How To Get On American Pickers

From someone who knows

January 26, 2018 - 2:54 pm

The producers of the History Channel show “American Pickers” want to film once again in South Carolina and they are looking for potential sites to bring stars Mike Wolfe and Frank Frick.

Sumter auctioneer Rob Dinkins was featured on the popular show in May 2016.

“What the producers are looking for, obviously, is an interesting story,” Dinkins said.

And Dinkins had quite a story for the collection Mike and Frank picked: It was in an old ice manufacturing plant in Sumter and was amassed by his mother and stepfather. The two frequented flea markets and auctions for years and had an antique store in Sumter. Dinkins knew where almost every piece of the collection came.

In short: Dinkins had a story about the place, a story about the collection and a story about each piece.

“I’m assuming why I was picked is you have an interesting location, an interesting story and, of course, then you have interesting things that they can look at as well,” he said.

Dinkins’ years among his parents’ antique collection led him to a profession as auctioneer. “It makes for an interesting show,” he told South Carolina Radio Network. “A lot of the time, it’s not what they buy. It’s the person or the story or the location that they’re talking about is what makes the show interesting.”

Dinkins said Mike and Frank preferred items that could be used for decoration, unique conversation pieces, “guy stuff,” and items with nostalgia. For people not familiar with the show, Mike Wolfe and Frank Fritz travel the country to “pick” items from junkyards, antique collections and personal collections to re-sell at their stores in Iowa and Tennessee.

The segment with Dinkins was filmed in December 2016. It took the crew about 14 hours for the shoot.

Dinkins said he enjoyed working with Frank and Mike. “The prices they offered, in my opinion, were absolutely in line with the values of prices you can get at that particular time,” he said. “And some of the prices they offered were actually better than I could have got on an average day.”

Dinkins said he was surprised by some of the techniques used by the production crew during the shoot.

“The filming tricks that I didn’t know about, like how you go from one room to the next, you have to do that, like three times,” he said. “They’ve got to film you leaving the room then they’ve got to film you coming into the room.”

“They made it look simple and easy and made you feel comfortable,” he said. “Fed you lunch. They took care of everything. They were prepared.”

Dinkins was pleased when he saw the show as it aired in May 2017.

“I wish every pick could be like this,” Frank said on the show. “Rob’s family had an incredible collection and Rob was a pleasure to work with.”

To contact the show’s producers, call 1-855-653-7878 or send an email to Be sure to include your name, phone number, town and state, where the collection is located and a description of the items in the collection.

JANUARY 26, 2018 BY RENEE SEXTON (South Carolina Radio Network)

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