Well, we think there's a TJ in there somewhere ... the hood and grille, at least. Whatever it is, Matt Thorson's Jeep-inspired creation qualified for TTC on its first-ever attempt, and it certainly appears to have all the markings of a contender: Monster horsepower, big honkin' tires, a reasonable center of gravity, and rear steer to boot. But all that good stuff doesn't mean a whole lot if the driver and spotter can't do their jobs well-and TTC has a way of separating the men from the boys that way. Does Matt have what it takes to pilot his Tube-J to victory? Tune in next month to find out. With its marbleized blue and silver paint and owner-fabbed metalwork, Matt's TJ is good looking as well as functional. The full tube chassis comes from Bluetorch Fabworks in Dothan, Alabama, and was powdercoated by Nor-Cal Powdercoating in Ukiah, northern Cali. The owner-fabbed nerf bars are made of 2-inch, 0.250-wall DOM tubing, and a Warn 9.5ti winch up front is ready for pulling duties on demand.With its marbleized blue and silver paint and owner-fabbed metalwork, Matt's TJ is good lo Inside the Jeep, it's basic but down-to-business: Mastercraft Baja seats provide comfort, and a Grant steering wheel and Auto Meter Lunar-series gauges rest in a custom dash and console. Check out the transfer-case triple sticks and Hurst long-throw shifter (real men drive stick, remember?), and the exterior powdercoating extends to the console and door panels. We're not sure what the diff covers recessed into the firewall are for, but hey, they look cool to us all the same.Inside the Jeep, it's basic but down-to-business: Mastercraft Baja seats provide comfort, A virtual mirror image of the front axle, the Jeep's rearend is equally stout. The Rockwell 2 1/2-ton boasts virtually the same impressive array of hardware as the front axle, though it uses an OE driveline brake and is fully hydro-steered. The link/coilover suspension with 3-inch Sway-A-Way boingers and custom-bracketed bumps mimics the front, the OE driveline brake provides stopping, and a Warn 4,700-pound rear winch and twin tow hooks are availableA virtual mirror image of the front axle, the Jeep's rearend is equally stout. The Rockwel The roster of parts for the TJ's frontend assembly reads like a TTC wish list: Rockwell 2 1/2-ton axle; 2-inch-diameter shafts with 47-spline inners; High Angle 0.120-wall driveshaft and 1410 U-joints; Ouverson spool and 6.72:1 gears; and full hydraulic steering. The Ouverson/Wilwood pinion brake is on hand to halt forward progress, and a 54x20 TSL Bogger is mounted to a 20x12 USA 6x6 two-piece rim at each axle end. Locating everything is a four-link front suspension incorporating 3-inch Sway-A-Way coilover shocks, extended hydro bumpstops in custom-welded brackets, and "a lot" of body lift provides added clearance for major-league meats.The roster of parts for the TJ's frontend assembly reads like a TTC wish list: Rockwell 2 Under the hood, the TJ's engine bay is simple and uncluttered. Resting between the tube rails is a 502ci RamJet V-8 crate motor that's been left completely untouched, save for the addition of Sanderson headers, Spin Tech mufflers, and 3-inch dual exhaust; all belts, pulleys, electrics, and ancillaries are stock-from-the-box GM Performance parts, not counting the Optima Red Top and dual electric fans. The engine cranks out an estimated 502 hp and 500 lb-ft at the Centerforce flywheel, which in turn powers the SM465 transmission and triple-sticked NP203/205 double transfer boxes.Under the hood, the TJ's engine bay is simple and uncluttered. Resting between the tube ra Owner name/city: Matt Thorson/Santa Rosa, CaliforniaOccupation: General contractorVehicle model: '00 Jeep Wrangler TJEstimated value: "A lot"Engine/aspiration: 502ci Chevy RamJet crate V-8/Stock EFI, Sanderson 3-inch dual exhaust, Spin Tech mufflersTransmission: SM465Transfer case(s): Triple-stick NP203/NP205Suspension (f/r): Four-link, Sway-A-Way 3-inch coilover shocks/Four-link, Sway-A-Way coilover shocksAxles (f/r): Ouverson-spooled Rockwell 2 1/2-ton/Ouverson-spooled Rockwell 2 1/2-tonAxle ratio: 6.72:1Wheels: 20x12 two-piece USA 6x6sTires: 54x19.5-20 Interco TSL Boggers By Douglas McColloch Enjoyed this Post? Subscribe to our RSS Feed, or use your favorite social media to recommend us to friends and colleagues!