Marcel's Custom Metal

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A photo of Marcel on his older days. Photo courtesy of the De Ley family, from Hemmings.
James Hetfield's Aquarius is a coachbuilt custom by Rick Dore Kustoms. Featuring a hand-formed body by Marcel's Custom Metal, the build made its first public appearance in January of 2015, at the 66th annual Grand National Roadster Show in Pomona, California.
Rick Dore's Illusion. The Illusion is a coachbuilt custom by Rick Dore Kustoms. It features a hand-formed body by Luc De Ley of Marcel's Custom Metal. The car made its debut at the 2019 Grand National Roadster Show in Pomona, California in January of 2019.

Marcel's Custom Metal of Corona, California is a custom fabrication shop started by master metalshaper Marcel De Ley.[1]


Marcel was born in Belgium. 14 years old, during World War II, Marcel left school to go to work building cabs and bodies for military trucks. Over the next 20 years, he continued to build his skills as a metalshaper. Around 1963 - 1964 he moved to the US where he began working at a collision shop. At the collision shop, Marcel began hand-shaping hard-to-find or impossible-to-find parts for exotic and rare cars like Ferraris and Duesenbergs. In 1974 he decided to open up his own shop Marcel’s Custom Metal to replicate or repair rare auto bodies on a full-time basis.[1]


Both Marcel's son Luc and his brother Marc began to learn metalshaping and work alongside their father, and over the years the shop has turned out bodies for people like James Hetfield, Chip Foose, Rick Dore, Roy Brizio, Boyd Coddington and Jerry Kugel.[1]


Marcel and Marc retired from the business around 2011, leaving Luc to run the shop. Marcel did so due to a declining health. He started to feel better son afterward, and about a month later he started helping out a bit. Then another month later he was in the shop for five days a week. That lasted until 2014 or so when his health began to decline again. May 21, 2018 he passed away, 89 years old.[1]


Cars Built or Restyled by Marcel's Custom Metal

James Hetfield’s Black Pearl
James Hetfield's Aquarius
Rick Dore's Illusion


References



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