JP Jeep (Tribute) vehicle - WIP

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JEXP94
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Joined: February 16th, 2015, 2:45 am
Vehicle Make/Model: Jeep Grand Cherokee (Tribute)
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JP Jeep (Tribute) vehicle - WIP

Post by JEXP94 » April 14th, 2020, 3:31 am

Hello dear forum fellows,

Buckle up and get ready for another typically long post by yours truly! :lol:

After so long searching for a viable host car for my explorer build and still sourcing parts that I come across with the help of a wonderful fellow forum member (you know who you are), I've come to the conclusion that it will be next to impossible to find a good base model first-gen explorer in or around my area, especially right now. For various reasons, mainly work, I am unable to make longs trips outside of DFW to look at possible cars, so I will continue the search as I have been, but only hoping I can find something close by.

However, I still want to drive something JP related until I can splurge and build my explorer.

I never gave it any thought, but I've had a jeep under my nose the entire time. It's been in our family since it was born in 2008, meticulously taken care of, and I actually just bought it off my father about 8 months ago. I don't know why I didn't think of making it a tribute vehicle any sooner. Granted, it's not a wrangler, but I figure it's as good a vehicle as any to make into a tribute, if JP had continued success into the late 2000's.

It is a 2008 Grand Cherokee Laredo.

I know there's not much to "build" for this car since it is obviously not one used in-film, but I would still like to keep as close to the original jeep designs as possible without breaking the bank.

I spent all day scouring the internet for (I don't know what to call them) blueprints(?) of 2008 Jeep Grand Cherokees and kept getting sent to this one website that had exactly what I was looking for, but behind a pay-wall. I kept looking around but couldn't find anything large enough or at a high enough resolution to use in a decent manner, so I settled for using the low quality, low resolution schematic(?) I found instead.

After a few hours making very rough design attempts in GIMP, I got this for a first draft. Please note there are definitely some inconsistencies in the designs because I've never done anything like this before, so please hold criticism unless it's constructive! Not trying to upset anyone here, it's just not going to be perfect on the first try or for a tribute vehicle! :lol:

Also, please don't mind the hideous watermarks and artifacting, I couldn't find a better version of the blueprints :( This is mainly for reference as a quick idea unless I decide to shell out money for the blueprints, which I might just do....

Image

Inherently because of the lack of large surface area on the side panels mainly due to the middle trim piece compared to it's wrangler counterpart, some adjustments such as striping location and logo positioning had to be made. Judging from the designs of the original jeeps too, it seems that the stripes would have extended across the roof (if it had been there), so I took creative liberty to wrap around the top and complete the look. I personally kind of like it. I also wanted to get the windshield frame that same red wrap like the original jeeps, but doing so meant the stripe of course had to be pulled further back, and it just didn't make the logo look good being so close to the stripe and off-center from the rear stripe, so I had to push the front stripe forward. I didn't want to put the logo on the rear door either because I fear it may not look as aesthetically pleasing. Furthermore, I am definitely keeping the original look of the painted side mirrors, no questions asked. lol

I most certainly am not spending hundreds of dollars on roof lights for this build either, unless I can find them cheap somewhere, but it is definitely a functional piece I would like to add as a throwback and to give it a bit more of an aggressive look. I currently have some cheap lights in my closet somewhere that I got off amazon years ago but never used, though they just don't fit the style. I'll have to do a little more research into this area to find something suitable. At worst, I'll probably just use those lights.

The back also looks kind of bland and I would really want it to stand out, but I'll have to think about what I can do to give it a JP look from back there (or maybe take ideas from someone here). Ideally, I would want people to be able to recognize it as a JP inspired vehicle from all angles. I'm thinking of maybe some "corporate" stickers, maybe an InGen logo, etc., but I still have to see what would look good and ultimately, what would fit.

For reference, here is my vehicle. (I spy a mirror-tag!)

Image

That picture is about a month and a half old, and I've since added roof rails to use for a roof rack system. Isn't she just purty? ;)

Something to note; I wanted to go completely accurate on the paint colors but when I called apparently the only place in the DFW metroplex that does PPG automotive paint, they said that they don't have the sand beige PPG code in supply. Something about it being a water based versus urethane based and because of that, they can't even produce it :?: so a few hours of several upon several phone calls later, I have all but given up on the base coat of accurate sand beige. For that reason, and it will likely be way too expensive and detract from my explorer build fund. However, I still want to do an accurate red color. So in essence, this build will be, unfortunately, on a white base, appearing more to be some sort of scientific research vehicle than that of a field transport vehicle.

This leads to me now consulting the veterans and fellow in-progress builders here - aside from knowing that it will simply be a tribute vehicle and has therefore no stringent guidelines to follow in order to be "screen accurate", what more can I do to really sell it on the whole look? I would like to be as accurate as possible, even though that's kind of impossible.... if that makes sense.

If anyone has any advice or suggestions or ideas, I really wouldn't mind hearing it. The worst that might happen is it doesn't happen. lol

It will be a good little while anyway before I actually paint it so there is time for plenty of planning, unless I get antsy and want to get this done ASAP which might also happen too :lol:

Look forward to hearing from ya'll!
Project: Jurassic Explorer #94 in Dallas, Texas
JEXP94.COM

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ratrace427
Completed JP Jeep
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Re: JP Jeep (Tribute) vehicle - WIP

Post by ratrace427 » April 14th, 2020, 9:37 am

I would scale down the door decals, they seem to large to me. You are on a budget but you could get the stripes done in vinyl. That way it all can be removed for future idea changes and or future buyers.
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bikemancs
Posts: 46
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Re: JP Jeep (Tribute) vehicle - WIP

Post by bikemancs » April 17th, 2020, 9:26 pm

I like the idea man. I think if you experiment with some tape to figure out the best spacing, it'll look good. I'd hope you could incorporate the windshield, but it may just not work.

What I would do? throw a cheap LED emergency light bar up top (clear lenses mean that it "could" be anything, security, medical, white floods...), and then put a more diluted (wider, and less in number) chevrons on the back.

https://cdn11.bigcommerce.com/s-snv0ypm ... 69.jpg?c=2

If that doesn't work, try this: https://danasafetysupply.com/ford-polic ... se-colors/
1994 Wrangler Sahara. Soon to become JP-30

Follow the progress @ Big E's Motorpool (insta: big_es_motorpool)

JEXP94
Posts: 49
Joined: February 16th, 2015, 2:45 am
Vehicle Make/Model: Jeep Grand Cherokee (Tribute)
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Re: JP Jeep (Tribute) vehicle - WIP

Post by JEXP94 » April 18th, 2020, 7:08 pm

ratrace427 wrote:
April 14th, 2020, 9:37 am
I would scale down the door decals, they seem to large to me. You are on a budget but you could get the stripes done in vinyl. That way it all can be removed for future idea changes and or future buyers.
Soooooo I bit the bullet and bought the vector map for my jeep in order to work with a clean and more capable design. Gotta say, it was a good choice and I am very pleased with the purchase. I've noticed that some areas just don't line up properly and the orthographic drawing isn't the greatest with some lines and curves and are likely just out of scale between each other, but all in all, it's quite good.

As such, I've re-done the design in the newly bought vector.

Image

I did take the advice to reduce the size of the door logo and found a way to incorporate the windshield trim into part of the color. Draft 2 is where I started experimenting with the trim and noticed on the original wranglers, that there appeared to be a sort of "plateau" and then upward move into the windshield with regards to the paint. I did this and it looked a little odd, so by Draft 3, I brought back the front stripe (both of which are equal angles and widths now, by the way), and shortened the amount of "plateau" before upward extension, and was happy with the results. Also in Draft 3, I reduced the size of the Hood Stamp since I was able to bring the front stripe back, and also because the original wrangler didn't have it so big. I guess being in Texas, we always want bigger :lol:

I also decided to add an InGen decal to the rear and color a little bit of the rear window trim red as well, again with the goal in mind of it being distinguishable or noticeable from most any angle seen. Yes, I'm making this vehicle for myself and also I won't mind the attention on-road from other :D

Full-Res image of Draft 3 here.
bikemancs wrote:
April 17th, 2020, 9:26 pm
I like the idea man. I think if you experiment with some tape to figure out the best spacing, it'll look good. I'd hope you could incorporate the windshield, but it may just not work.

What I would do? throw a cheap LED emergency light bar up top (clear lenses mean that it "could" be anything, security, medical, white floods...), and then put a more diluted (wider, and less in number) chevrons on the back.

https://cdn11.bigcommerce.com/s-snv0ypm ... 69.jpg?c=2

If that doesn't work, try this: https://danasafetysupply.com/ford-polic ... se-colors/
Incorporated the windshield now! See the GIF above. It's what I've wanted to do from the start anyway just to get it as close to the original design as possible, even though it's a different generation and model.

Once I finalize my design digitally, I'll definitely do a mockup with taped off sections to try to replicate this real-world, maybe even use a surface that can be painted to get a rough idea of how it would look before a final push. I don't know if any such thing or technique exists (first thing that comes to my mind is maybe plastic?), but I'll have to do more research and see.

As for the light bar, I do have an old Federal Signal Vector LED bar from my time in public safety, but in Texas, the laws here require clear lenses to take on public roads. Unfortunately the color of the bulbs on the Vector are clear and use the lens housing to project the appropriate colors, so mine would not be street legal thus. Plus, I don't think I'll be going for that look either, I might just keep mine plain and simple for the most part.

However...

I do have these cheap LED "light bars" I got off amazon close to 6 years ago and never used, for whatever reason.

Image

I bought them in packs of two - two floods and two spots configurations, so that gives me 4 light pods. I'll most probably set up one of each on each side of the roof rack, and in the future, add an actual "bar" to the front of the rack forward facing. I've been wanting to do it anyway since I bought the car off my dad months ago, so it's only a matter of time.

Finally, I don't know if anyone else here is interested, but if someone also has a 2005-2010 Jeep Grand Cherokee (WK Code) and is looking to do something similar to tribute their vehicle also, feel free to send me a PM and I'll send you the vector files to use so you can design your car yourself and have a good file to work with! Why pay $24 like I had to when I can give it to you for free? All ya's gotta do is ask :)
Project: Jurassic Explorer #94 in Dallas, Texas
JEXP94.COM

bikemancs
Posts: 46
Joined: February 23rd, 2020, 1:14 pm
Vehicle Make/Model: 1994 Wrangler
Location: Fayetteville, NC
Instagram: Big_Es_Motorpool
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Re: JP Jeep (Tribute) vehicle - WIP

Post by bikemancs » April 19th, 2020, 4:54 pm

Draft III looks good, and it looks better getting some color on the rear hatch. I still like the Chevron idea, but it's your rig, not anyone else's. Definitely need some additional lighting.
1994 Wrangler Sahara. Soon to become JP-30

Follow the progress @ Big E's Motorpool (insta: big_es_motorpool)

JEXP94
Posts: 49
Joined: February 16th, 2015, 2:45 am
Vehicle Make/Model: Jeep Grand Cherokee (Tribute)
Contact:

Re: JP Jeep (Tribute) vehicle - WIP

Post by JEXP94 » May 13th, 2020, 4:15 pm

I've decided I want to go big or go home on the back of my car.

I found an InGen logo file online that was decently high-res and scaled it up to something workable. I then sent it to a local vinyl decal creator who created a proof for me. It will be 15"x20" and go on the back window of my Jeep.

I know, I know, it should say "the" instead of "your", but again, creative liberty 😛

Since it will go on a surface that doesn't need any prep work besides some cleaning, I can't wait for them to make it and then apply it as soon as I get my hands on it!

Image

If anyone would like the high-res file, I'll be glad to send it to you in a DM, or maybe I can attach it in a post here when I get home later.
Project: Jurassic Explorer #94 in Dallas, Texas
JEXP94.COM

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