By Joe Roberts @jrobertsjourno

THOUSANDS of specialised LED lights have been used to transform a 2007 Chevrolet Suburban into a light show on wheels

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Videographer / director: Gerrit Messersmith
Producer: Joe Roberts,
Editor: Ross Dower / Ruby Coote

TJ Dickenson, of Titusville, Florida, is behind the pimped-out truck, which he refers to as the ‘Boom X’.

It features custom LED lights that respond differently to bass, mids, and treble – creating a fully unique light show.

TJ, who has been customising trucks since the mid-90s, told Barcroft TV: “I did all this myself. There is no truck or car in the automobile world that’s done to this magnitude.

“There are a couple thousand LEDs in this truck. The LEDs are digital which means they are completely adjustable.

“There’s separate channels for the bass, mid, and treble to where you can designate certain areas of your car to the frequencies.”

The lights have been added to nearly every part of the truck, from the seats to the custom steering wheel and around the massive speaker setup in the boot.

TJ has added 45 speakers, including 15 sub woofers, to make sure the truck brings the party to any car show it attends.

“What got me into cars was I always saw these low riders with booming systems,” explained the service electrician. “So that’s what I wanted, and that is the goal that I achieved with this truck.

“I was happiest when the subs finally went in. That was a big milestone because I finally got the bass I was looking for.

“It’s extremely loud, but more importantly it’s crystal clear like a symphony. The thing sounds as amazing as the artist intended when they recorded it.

“Now, we go cruising on the weekend, or if I just need some bass in my life I go on a drive and turn the stereo as loud as I can and just enjoy the music.”

With its custom lime green paint and 32-inch rims, the pimped-out truck draws crowds at car shows throughout Florida, where TJ has won more trophies than he can count.

“I couldn’t tell you or even come close to a number,” he said. “My attic is stacked and full of trophies and my living room is way too cluttered with them.

Still, he remains humble: “When I go to a car show I don’t expect to win anything, just because that’s not who I am. I’m going there for fun.”

No doubt, the truck’s sound and light setup, controlled by a one-off prototype controller, is what helps TJ stand out, even when competing against those with larger budgets.

As TJ explains: “The controller is really remarkable and has channels for the bass, mid and treble to where you can designate certain areas of your car to those frequencies.

“Before, you had to get on the computer and program one song, one note at a time and it could literally take you 48 hours to program one song.”

LEDs have also been installed in the headlights, and around the custom Chevrolet logo that TJ constructed for the front grille.

It’s taken a lot of work to get to this point, with TJ investing significant work into the one-of-a-kind suburban.

“When I first got it, it was completely stock and I actually found it in Alabama,” he explained.

“What took the longest was the customisation of the fenders.”

Before transforming the look of the truck with lights, TJ decided to remodel the fenders by removing them, modifying them, then welding them back on to look as though they were factory-installed.

“I knew that I didn’t want to do what everyone else did,” said TJ. “I wanted to custom fit the wheels to the truck so we cut the fenders off, we lifted it, welded it, stretched it.”

The result means the truck’s entire body has been completely reconstructed, giving the ‘Boom X’ its unique profile.

In terms of engine power, TJ opted to forgo increased performance, simply adding four alternators to cope with the extensive electrical power required to keep the lights and sound running.

That means he doesn’t ever go much faster than 75mph when he’s on the road, but he estimates he can hit 100 if he feels the urge.

Overall, TJ has put around $50,000 into the truck to bring his vision to life, and says he would consider selling his creation for the right amount.

“If somebody goes ‘here is a $100,000 for your truck’ I would have to think about it. Somebody offered me $70,000 and I just couldn’t do it. I was having so much fun.”

TJ now offers his LED assistance to others, customising cars from around the states with his top-tier lighting creations.

And he’s still not finished with ‘Boom X’. The enterprising electrician plans to chrome the underside of his creation and install even more speakers.

Meanwhile, he is happy to bask in the attention his truck brings: “Older people and younger people of all ages really enjoy it.

“You rarely get people who go ’it’s dumb.’ And that’s okay with me too because I still got your attention.”