My name is Sean Puz, I was born and raised in Pittsburgh Pa. All through my childhood I was fascinated by art. I would draw pictures often. When I was very young, my father started to race on local dirt tracks. Obviously he was into the passion for cars. I immediately developed the same passion as well. Many times in school I would Draw pictures in class. I distinctly remember a teacher yelling at me for doing so. She said “Mr. Puz, you can’t go through your life drawing pictures”. Jokes on her. That’s exactly what I do, and I have been able to earn a handsome living by doing so. As a child, while at some local dirt tracks I would take clay that had been thrown into seating areas from the race cars and would shape that into small cars and in order play with them. Ironically, I do the same now but in metal. During the school years I would help my father repair cars for his living. We did everything from frame and rust repair, to engine overhauls. Almost everything. This is where my background started. After high school, a very hard time for me due to family separation issues, I started full time jobs in many entry level jobs In automotive and construction fields. Eventually I ended up a union equipment operator. This afforded me the time and resources to purchase a home and start to equip a shop. I started designing and building my own furniture and accessories due to what I wanted, wasn’t available. This ended up leading to a friend of mine opening a bar/ restaurant and wanting some of this type metalwork in his establishment. I jumped all over that opportunity. This ended up being a huge step in my life.
This bar opened and was very popular bringing in many people from all over. Some were a group of people from a new local general contractor company. They inquired about the source of the metalwork and were told it was me. They immediately called and I began to do jobs for their company. That was the official start of Metal Shop Designs. This work load enabled me to transition to full time self employment. Within a couple years, I outgrew the 2 car garage at my home and moved into a 40x80 shop within a few miles of my house. Things were going well enough to start racing. I did that for a couple years but realized it was a very large strain on the shop, family, and finances (which I knew already from my father’s experience). But I did anyway. So I decided to stop racing and build a hot rod to try and “curb the appetite”. I did a full chassis s10 truck. During that build I happened to find a 1936 Chevy truck for sale. So I purchased it. This was my first rat rod. After that truck was done and the next one – a complete hand made truck of my own design, I finally felt Like I found the niche I was looking for in life. That was the start of Bad Ass Rat Rods. By this time, my 3rd Build was complete and I was enjoying them everywhere. Next was another big life event. So over time, I heard about a rat rod show in Gulfport Ms. the Atomic Blast. In the mean time work was good enough to relocate to central Florida, as much of my work was in the south. So one day I saw an advertisement about the Atomic Blast, now I was only 8 hrs away rather than 20. I decided to take the full custom build I named RATIcal. To the Show. I didn’t know a soul there, but this crowd and participants treated me like royalty. I ended up winning best of show and was presented a huge hand made trophy. The main organizer, Stephanie Lea had taken my contact info at some point. Fast forward to a year and a half later. I get a phone call outta the clear blue from Stephanie. She identified herself and I remembered. She proceeded to ask if I was interested in doing the RATIcal Rod Buildoff, Drive off. I thought about it and decided it was definitely a bucket list item in my life, so I accepted. Enter iL Capo, the radically altered 1936 Packard. This build worked well enough to win me the world champion title. After that build, I decided to actually head a new direction in auto building. 1 of One Customs was born! We are half way through this build and I could not be any happier! The rest, is history in the making!
Thank you, Sean Puz.