The 1970 GTO Judge is considered by many to be the quintessential muscle car of the era. With its aggressive looks, over-the-top styling, and with plenty of horsepower to back it up, the ’70 Judge had it all. The result of that popularity has created a niche market for creating tribute Judges. Adding the Judge styling to a basic GTO is fairly simple, the single most important piece of the puzzle is the stripes.
Phoenix Graphix spent 22 months, tripled the budget, and went through 24 color matches to produce a quality, correct Judge stripe kit. The stripes were originally produced with an iridescent quality, which took a lot of research to correctly reproduce. This is the only correct Judge stripe kit available.
There were four color combinations available for the stripes from the factory. These are green/white/yellow, yellow/red/black, yellow/red/blue, and blue/pink/orange. The stripe colors are dictated by the base color of the car. The factory correct color combos are as follows:
Green/white/yellow stripes: Palomino Copper, Baja Gold, Palisade Green, Pepper Green, Verdoro Green, Sierra Yellow and Granada Gold.
Yellow/red/black stripes: Burgundy and Cardinal Red.
Blue/pink/orange: Bermuda Blue, Atol Blue, Mint Tourquoise, and Orbit Orange.
The wrong color combo can really ruin the look of the car, so check your colors and make sure you order the right kit.
The stripes are quite easy to install, it is the placement that can be tricky. To help alleviate some of the stress, Phoenix Graphix cuts each stripe so that the bottom edge of the masking paper correctly positions the stripe. Placing the lower edge of the masking so it lays over the top edge of the body styleline, over each wheel well, achieves the correct height. The distance from the front and rear of the rear quarter panel should be equal. The front fender stripe crosses the door jamb, leaving approximately a 1\4” overhang to wrap around the fender and door, which will keep everything aligned and correct.
We visited Redline Auto Sports in Wilson, Ok while they were installing a Phoenix Graphix kit on this 1970 GTO Judge. The entire process took about an hour and totally changed the look of the car. Follow along and see how it’s done.
1. The GTO had been washed and wiped down with alcohol before a mixture of soap and water was sprayed on the rear quarter panel. The soapy water deactivates the adhesive for a short time, which allows the stripe to be positioned on the car.
2. The paper backing peels off easily. If the stripes have been sitting for a long time (6 months or more), the paper may stick or tear, so be careful. It is important that the decal not touch itself, which would effectively ruin it. Note the silvery look to the backside of the sticker; this is part of the iridescent finish.
3. Applying the stripe is much easier with 2 people, so get a buddy to help. Note the bottom edge of the paper is right at the ridge of the style line.
4. Using the supplied squeegee, the air and excess water is worked out of the stripe. Start at one end and work to the other.
5. Fred Murfin, of Redline Auto Sports, slowly peeled off the paper backing. Sometimes the end of the decal will peel up with the paper, simply press it back down.
6. First stripe down.
7. The front fender stripe comes in 2 pieces. The stripe should hang over the edge just about a ¼” so it can wrap around the fender.
8. This is what you don’t want, a lift or large bubble. Luckily in our case, the stripe could be lifted.
9. The stripe was off by about an 1/8”, which is what caused the section to lift. Fred pulled the sticker up and repositioned it. The car and sticker were sprayed with more water to make it easier.
10. The door stripe was matched to the fender and placed on like the rest.
11. The door was opened and the overhang was wrapped around the edge of the fender and taped down with some green painter’s tape. This will hold the stripe in place and allow the adhesive to cure. This is only required when a short piece is wrapped over and edge.
12. The lower fender was sprayed for the Judge decal.
13. The Judge decal should be centered on the fender and squeegee’d.
14. The side of the GTO is done, looks like a Judge now.
15. The trunk lids received its decal as well. The lower portion of the paper aligns with the bottom edge of the trunk lid for placement.
16. The backing was removed and the car is done.
17. This shot shows the iridescent quality of the stripes. Phoenix Graphix considers this stripe kit to be one of its 2 major accomplishments in striping. The other is their 10th anniversary Trans-Am kit.
A life-long gearhead, Street Tech Magazine founder and editor Jefferson Bryant spends more time in the shop than anywhere else. His career began in the car audio industry as a shop manager, eventually working his way into a position at Rockford Fosgate as a product designer. In 2003, he began writing tech articles for magazines, and has been working as an automotive journalist ever since. His work has been featured in Car Craft, Hot Rod, Rod & Custom, Truckin’, Mopar Muscle, and many more. Jefferson has also written 5 books and produced countless videos. Jefferson operates Red Dirt Rodz, his personal garage studio, where all of his magazine articles and tech videos are produced. You can follow Jefferson on Facebook (Jefferson Bryant), Twitter (71Buickfreak), and YouTube (RedDirtRodz).