I finally got the exterior close to what I want it to look like. In November of 2005, I dropped the Explorer off at the painters after some long days of fiberglassing bumpers, making splash panels, fiberglassed the grille, and fabricating a wing. Two months later, I picked it up and have been enjoying it ever since!
This is what I started with before the paint job and fiberglassing:
I fiberglassed the front bumper and made it into one piece (combined the stock bumper and Explorer Express airdam into one). Then I fiberglassed an Explorer Express X-Spec grille and finished it. After that came fiberglassing and smoothing the rear bumper. I removed the chrome splash panels from the rear and had sheet metal fabricated to match the body contour and welded in place.
My final step before it went to paint was custom fabricating a wing. The only companies that made a wing for Explorers that looked good in my opinion was Saleen and Explorer Express. Both are no longer in production; so that left me with making my own. I looked at different makes and models of vehicles and came across a wing for a Kia Sedona. In stock form, it is too wide for an Explorer, but with some modifications, it can be made to fit.
Click here for instructions on how I made the wing.
I was in no hurry to get the Explorer back since it was being painted in winter and I wouldn't be driving it, so I let the paint shop take their time. They removed the roof rack and did the final sanding, etc. I got it back in January of 2006, and have been thrilled. There were a few things we changed and had to repaint, but overall I am very happy with the outcome!