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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello City!

My name is Andrey, I am a professional web designer from Toronto, Ontario. And as any designer I am quite visual person.
In 2010 I purchased white 2011 Ford Escape XLT and fell in love overall with its new body style and technical characteristics, but from the second day started planning miscellaneous exterior changes.

According to my personal observations, the majority of drivers who decide to customize, have black, red and silver Escapes. No light colors and white especially were mentioned. Correct me if I am wrong! And I am glad to change the situation!

First I got rid of default chrome grill and tinted front windows. My personal opinion is that if there is only one chrome part in exterior, it looks cheap and lonely (as it was in my case). I have ordered new grill and painted it into mate black color, that matches all black exterior details and makes a solid contrast to white body. Moreover I have all-black interior so it matches everywhere!

I have ordered black headlights from sport package from eBay recently to match the new grill. Waiting them to come.

But today I would like to share with you my idea of how to customize your wheels without spending lots of money.

I am starting Rims Visual Enlargement Project on my Escape!

The most popular XLT model comes with Base 16" wheels that look not big enough on medium size SUV (IMHO). And you need at least $1200 (according to my research) to upgrade to cheapest 17". Today I am not ready to spend that much money. So I started thinking of a walkaround.

Using my experience in Photoshop and design tricks I am offering a solutions for those who have 16" Base (NOT CHROME) Rims and ready to spend some time in their garage. I didn't calculate all the expenses for the project, but it is obvious and you will see that it will be absolutely incomparable with purchasing new wheels set.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I devide the project into two parts:
1) Rims works
2) Tires works

In the first part I am going to customize Base 16" Rims by painting its spokes in mate black color. In the second part I will use a visual trick that came to my mind after watching one of classic movies: I will wall paint my tires.

Thin line right below the Rim makes a visual effect so that the rim looks wider and the tire becomes look like low profile!

The benefits for me are:
- Almost no expenses, exept paint
- Imrpoved visual look
- No TMPS alignment


Here is a computer mockup of before and after. For those who like my idea I would like to show how it will look on other Escape colors.










 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
But these computer models were not enough and I needed more realistic example. So today I took black insulation tape and applied it to the Rim to make as close look as possible. :D
Here is how it looked like from close:



Then I photoshoped it and added white line on wheels:


And here is final, more realistic mockup of what will be done:




----------------------------------------------------------

So what do you think? I am opened to discussion and always appreciate opinions!
 

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I like it, but the white stripe around the rim makes it look like white wall tires instead of giving the rim itself a larger appearance...imo.
 

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I'm with skyline. It all looks great except the white stripe.

I wonder how your Escape would look with the sport appearance headlights BUT a painted white grille, instead of the matte black. Give it a sort of pre-2011 Expedition Limited-look.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
SkylineTj said:
I like it, but the white stripe around the rim makes it look like white wall tires instead of giving the rim itself a larger appearance...imo.
Thanks SkylineTj,

Well, it virtually is and will be a white wall tires like, nothing else. :shrug:
The stripe makes tires look divided and narrower overall from one side. The bad thing is that this wall paint is limited in colors otherwise I would be able to match the rim color...

Tang said:
I'm with skyline. It all looks great except the white stripe.

I wonder how your Escape would look with the sport appearance headlights BUT a painted white grille, instead of the matte black. Give it a sort of pre-2011 Expedition Limited-look.
Thanks, Tang!

White grilles are used on Escapes by municipal services here in Toronto. With them Escape achieves more friendly/romantic/tender look... :violin: I have made a mockup with it and personally don't like it at all. With black one it becomes more strong, contrast and bold.

 

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Adelion,

I really like what you have done to your Escape.

I myself hated the chrome grille, as I thought it looked cheap and didnt contrast with my black escape.

I added the black grille as one of my first mods, followed by a black bull-bar to give it a tougher look, black SAP headlights (also got off ebay) and i went for the black SAP wheels since I got them through a member for a great price and put some Hankook 17 inch tires.

Overall the transformation cost around $1500, not too bad (most of that was from the wheels and tires 600+500)

I was considering changing the grey radio and cup holder piece to the piano black, but I like the contrast the grey gives to the interior, otherwise it would be too black, since I have black leather interior.

Can't wait to see the rest of the transformation. :thumb:
 

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Wow, great idea to get a different look from your wheels. I like it. I'm with the others... drop the thin white wall look.

Do it, and enjoy it until you save up enough money to make the switch to the 17's.
 

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you are good at photoshop :D

do u use adobe? i started out on corel, haven't dedicated myself to make the adjustment to adobe.

the rim idea is great..but the tire paint probably wont last one good winter season in northern ohio.

i like the idea tho!
 

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jarheadoo7 said:
you are good at photoshop :D
Agreed,

jarheadoo7 said:
do u use adobe? i started out on corel, haven't dedicated myself to make the adjustment to adobe.
but NOW you've gone and done it! ;)

Being a graphics guy I learned everything Adobe on a Mac. Heaven.

Get hired with the current company (R&D, engineering & manufacturing)... everythig is PC and Corel. HELL!

The pervious guy had used Corel for who knows what reason.

I could live with the PC thing. But I did everything I could in PhotoShop and didn't tell anyone. I got our video/audio guy to switch from Corel PhotoPaint to Photoshop, getting better. Then ALL of the vector artwork was done in CorelDraw, and we had multiple users, so I was forced to learn it. I hate to admit most all of my Illustrator skills are gone. I can get around but not like I used too. CorelDraw was surprisingly easy to learn. And it is actually quite versatile in its import and export capabilities with all of the different file formats I deal with. Now I use a combination of PhotoShop, CorelDraw, Illustrator in that order.

Bottom line... learn Photoshop you'll be happier in the end.

:topic:
Do the wheels...
 

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IMO with the time and effort needed to properly pull this off (removing tires, prep work, painting, etc), you can probably find someone willing to sell you 17" Escape rims for cheap. There's a lot of people out there with 17s who wish they had 18s, 20s, etc.
 

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It's a really cool look if you can pull it off. I'm not sure if tires can be painted or how long the line would stay white, I know I have a heck of a time keeping letters on the front tires white.
Painting the aluminium rims I would think could have it's own challenges as well, by the time the surface is etched enough to hold the paint there will be no turning back. Looking forward to seeing how this turns out for you. :thumb:
 

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futameca said:
but NOW you've gone and done it! ;)

learn Photoshop you'll be happier in the end.
.
everytime i download the free program i get fed up well before the 30 day expiration :cuss:

:topic:

i think you should extend the black beyond the rim

 

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That can be annoying. You could start with PhotoShop Elements. It's a fraction of the cost of the full bown PhotoShop... might do everything you want.
 

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...or Corel Photo-Paint, which, IMHO, is every bit as good as Photoshop, without the Adobe price tag.
 

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jpark said:
...or Corel Photo-Paint, which, IMHO, is every bit as good as Photoshop, without the Adobe price tag.
Them are fight'en words... :box:

jarheadoo7 said:
thats what I use.. corel paint shop pro photo X2
NO NO NO NO NO!, ACK, stop... look turn away from the darkside. :fan:

('Course I was a PS user from the beggining then trying to use PP, ick. If you're starting from scratch it might be ok.)
 

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futameca said:
NO NO NO NO NO!, ACK, stop... look turn away from the darkside. :fan:

('Course I was a PS user from the beggining then trying to use PP, ick. If you're starting from scratch it might be ok.)
haha i know what ur sayin.. but i have grown up on it so its more familiar and easy for me to use..
 

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That's what some of the software guys here use for in house stuff, not for the paying customers consumption.

It might be a good alternative.
 
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