Update: The airing date for the Motorhead Garage show featuring Under the Sun Inserts of East Patchogue has been pushed back to July 22 at 8:30 a.m. (Scroll down for the complete listings.)
Original post: Back in 2016, GreaterPatchogue reported all about the efforts of two close friends and Bellport graduates whose Jeep Wrangler products were “creating a buzz” in the Jeep world
Now their company is absolutely blowing up.
Under the Sun Inserts founders Jamie Thomas and Joe SanFilippo have since quit their day jobs to keep up with the international demand for their custom grill inserts and other products they manufacture in East Patchogue.
And next month the two will be appearing on Velocity Channel’s Motorhead Garage.
They headed to Knoxville, Tenn., in April to tape. The show airs on Sunday, July 8, at 8:30 a.m., then repeats after that.
Under the Sun Inserts will be featured for about eight minutes during the 30-minute episode.
Thomas and SanFilippo were taken by surprise when they got a call from Motorhead Garage.
“We were at Daytona Jeep week and my phone rings and this guy just started talking to me. .. after a five minute intro, he says this is Jeff rom MotorHead Garage,” SanFilippo said.
The two jumped at the opportunity to showcase their signature products to millions of Americans.
There’s also more to tell about the development of Under the Sun Inserts since 2016.
The company is close to inking a major deal with a national retailer.
“We are also now the official grill insert of Jeep Jamboree USA, which is a pretty big deal in the Jeep community,” SanFilippo said.
Jeep Jamboree USA coordinates off road trips and other excursions across the country.
The grill inserts they have developed are made from aluminum. They are heat-resistant and paint-friendly.
The insert slides easily behind a Wrangler’s grill. They make variations of the American flag, the Canadian flag and the Diver Down flag, to name a few, as well as custom inserts made-to-order.
The demand grew quickly as soon as the two started posting pictures on social media.
But they were able to grow their company by streamlining their production, greatly reducing the time it takes to make their inserts.
“It used to take three days to hand-paint them,” Thomas said.
With their state-of-the-art printer they invested in last year, it now takes a mere two minutes. And they can print three at a time.
The two believe their products are so popular because they’re high quality, affordable, and made in America.
“We offer a big variety of other Jeep accessories too, like LED lighting, bumpers, foot pegs, all quality and made in the USA, which is big for Jeepers,” said SanFilippo. “We’re Jeep lovers so we kind of have our fingers on the pulse.”
As for the inserts, they invented that product by going back and forth with each other over text message.
Each noticed the cockamamie ways Wrangler owners were finding to decorate the protective inserts behind their grilles.
Some would even tie perforated strips of gutter-guard together using plastic zip-ties.
Motivated by how many Wranglers they saw on the road — all potential customers —they developed their own product in Thomas’ garage in East Patchogue. Today, a sizable chunk of Jeeps here in Suffolk sport an Under the Sun insert.
“But I get excited for the Jeeps i see without them,” said Thomas, “because I feel like that’s an opportunity.”
“And we haven’t really touched the market potential yet,” said SanFilippo.
want to watch?
The show featuring Under the Sun Inserts airs Sunday, July 22, at 8:30 a.m on the Velocity Channel.
Motorhead Garage will also be syndicated on REV’N TV and MAVTV at varying times. Velocity (Ch. 150) and MAVTV (Ch. 243) are both available in Brookhaven Town through Cablevision’s Optimum. Click here for the channel lineup.
Scroll down for complete times.
Photos from the set of Motorhead Garage in Knoxville, Tenn., come courtesy of Under the Sun Inserts.
Top: (L-R): Dave Bowman of Motorhead Garage, Jamie Thomas and Joe SanFilippo and Sam Memmolo, also of Motorhead Garage.