By Zach Collier
The concept is simple: there’s some big, weird-shaped, and/or strange item that needs to be transported. FedEx, UPS, and the United States Postal Service won’t ship it. So independent shippers step up to the plate and compete against each other to land the job. When they do, they then need to figure out how to transport the dang thing while turning a profit.
Television network A&E has been airing Shipping Wars for 9 seasons now. The exploits of independent shippers take the show’s crew all over the world. This includes Orem, Utah, where Elkins Engineering has built the world’s hottest new instrument. Literally. The Flamethrower Pipe Organ is a $40,000 prop organ that shoots flames and requires an independent shipper to deliver it to its new owner in Saudi Arabia. A&E needed a venue to show off the unique device while they were in town, so they contacted Logan Casper, the owner of The Boardwalk.
It wasn’t long before Casper got roped into a bit of an acting job. The show portrays him as a “buyer” who has to ship the organ ASAP. Since there’s a time crunch for a fire organ, ya know? Gotta add some drama somehow.
“Really, I just helped them load it in, played it a bit, and said a few lines,” says Casper.
Even though the show has scripted elements, one thing is certain: there really was a pipe organ shooting fire at The Boardwalk in Orem, UT and it’s h*ckin cool. Casper, The Boardwalk, and the Flamethrower Organ appear on season 9, episode 6 of Shipping Wars. You can see the Flamethrower Organ in action below.