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Old 04-18-2010, 03:34 PM   #1
Johnyoder
 
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Help with poor fitting ARH exhaust

I need some help deciding the most cost effective way to fix my exhaust problems. Last summer I purchased an ARH exhaust system including the headers, cats, and 3 inch pipe hooked up to Magnaflow axel backs. First let me say that I have had Kooks, QTP, and Hookers on other cars I have had and I am very impressed with the ARH HEADERS the ARH exhaust in another story. I have installed over a dozen exhaust systems on other vehicles always with good results but after I installed the ARH twice it was still hitting the underside of the Camaro. I then took it to a local exhaust shop to have them install it. $100 later it was worst than ever. I then called ARH and was told by a gentleman that they have sold thousands of exhaust systems and none of them have had problems so I must be doing something wrong. I listened to his recommendations and removed the exhaust and installed in once more and it is still hitting. I contacted a trusted vendor from this forum and he told me that he has also had problems with their system and recommended that I get the full Magnaflow system for best fit. ARH tells me to take the car to one of their recommended shops which is an hour and one half away from me to have them install it. I was quoted $300 by this shop to (fix) this exhaust. So the question is should I spend the $300 in the hopes that they can fix it or just buy the full Magnaflow system?
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Old 04-18-2010, 03:48 PM   #2
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Maybe you caught a defective pipe . ARH should at least try to help you instead of passing the buck .
You seem experienced enough to have gotten the job done correctly and then your muffler shop surely should have been able to fit it .
The guys that want 3 bills to install it probably know it won't fit and are adjusting the price upwards to cover their time bending and correcting what ARH may have screwed up in manufacturing .
Installing an exhaust ain't exactly rocket science .
At least now I know what headers not to buy .
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Old 04-18-2010, 04:48 PM   #3
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Where is it hitting? I have the full system and have plenty of clearance everywhere. Seems like loosening up the slip joints, getting a big pry bar in where ever it is tight and retighten while prying on it should line things up. Between all those slip joints on the cats and X pipe should be able to shift things around to clearance where ever is close. See if you can get a picture of where it is hitting.

Not sure if it's possible to get the cats on the wrong side or the X upside down. Maybe look at some pics on the web of other installed systems and see if anything looks different.

Here is a local shop by me that put on an ARH system. I used these pics to help me make sure I had the cats oriented correctly and the rear O2's in about the same position as in these pics. With all these slip joints should be able to adjust it quite a bit.
http://www.engineeredvictories.com/fugitive/phase2/

Last edited by Russell James; 04-18-2010 at 04:58 PM.
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Old 04-18-2010, 05:16 PM   #4
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Thanks for the replies guy! I would not shy away from the headers they are very nice quality just not a big fan of the 3" pipes. When I spoke to ARH they told me to make sure the cats are on right, they are, and that the x pipe was not upside down, its not. They told me to use a jack to jack the x pipe all the way up then tighten, I did. It still hits.
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Old 04-18-2010, 05:36 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Russell James View Post
Where is it hitting?
Pictures also help...
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Old 04-18-2010, 05:37 PM   #6
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So its actually hitting the underside of the car?

Your not talking about the tunnel brace are you? Thats a common problem with aftermarket exhausts.
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Old 04-18-2010, 05:43 PM   #7
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I can take pictures but it only hits while driving. When it is sitting you have enough room for your fingers in every direction. And it is the tunnel brace it is hitting.
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Old 04-18-2010, 05:47 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnyoder View Post
I can take pictures but it only hits while driving. When it is sitting you have enough room for your fingers in every direction. And it is the tunnel brace it is hitting.
Very common problem. Your first bet is to add a few thick washers to all four bolts holding on the tunnel brace (washers go between the brace and the car). That will give you an additional 1/4'' or so of clearance. That might be all you need to stop the banging.

If that doesn't correct the issue, I would suggest that you get an aftermarket tunnel brace that provides additional clearance.

I know a bunch of guys that have gone through this. I'm also one of them. I have several washers on my tunnel brace right now to keep my exhaust from hitting it. I'm also getting a new Tunnel brace just to give me some more clearance.
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Old 04-18-2010, 05:51 PM   #9
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Check out this thread (post # 8).http://www.camaro5.com/forums/showth...t=tunnel+brace
He makes a nice tunnel brace but its expensive.

BMR has a tunnel brace that only $89.00 and is suppose to give an additional 1/4'' of clearance.
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Old 04-18-2010, 05:57 PM   #10
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My ARH system came with the tunnel brace spacers and fits fine. Did they leave that out of your kit? Washers will do the same thing though.
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Old 04-18-2010, 06:46 PM   #11
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It did come with washers. When I took it to the Muffler shop they were nice enough to add 2 washers all the way around (3 total) and take a hammer to the brace. WOW. If you think the BMR would help I'll order one in the morning. Thanks for the advice.
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Old 04-19-2010, 06:20 AM   #12
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The real thick washers are in there? They are like 1/2 inch thick?

When I put mine in I put a chunk of plywood under the brace before cranking it tight. Had the joints fairly tight but a hair loose so they would slip. Then tightened that tunnel brace down with the wood in there. Then tighten all the joints real tight. Then adjusted the rear tips and cranked the rear joints tight. Then pounded the piece of wood out and there was some gap left there.
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Old 04-19-2010, 07:53 AM   #13
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Sounds like you might have forgotten to push it through the hangers on the exhaust.............especially if you have a finger gap all around and only hear it when your driving
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Old 04-19-2010, 10:26 AM   #14
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i too have ARH headers, cats, and x-pipe connected to magnaflow comp series axle-back.

mine was hitting the tunnel brace as well, so i bought the tunnel brace from MBRP that comes with their exhaust. it gives you 3/4" more clearance and i bolted it up with the 1/4" spacers that came with the ARH kit.

i would also venture to guess that those stupid ball-joint connectors on the ARH kit are "sagging" over time. mine would at least. to solve this i turned those clamps on this socket style connector almost vertical so there was a bolt on the top and on the bottom, preventing the pipes from sagging since those bolts won't stretch and allow it to sag as if they were horizontal.

so i lossened all connections, lifted the center of the exhaust up as far as it would go, tightened all the connections and torqued them to specs going from the cats back, adjusted those socket style connectors to where the bolts were nearly vertical and still accessible and tightend them down as much as i could get them to, then the next section of pipe i had to adjust to make sure my tips were perfectly aligned, then i tightend them down. hasn't hit the tunnel brace since, and i have about an inch of clearance with the tunnel brace.

whenever i get my supercharger & cam, i will also install a full 3" exhaust, probably the magnaflow comp series catback, and slice those dumb socket style clamps off, then weld the magnaflow catback to the ARH x-pipe without that connection if it'll work. if not i will just trade my x-pipe & cats in for the ARH short kit cats, then expand the ends so it is a flush 3" all the way back.

that is what we get for mix matching 2 different aftermarket exhaust systems... nothing will be 100% bolt-on!
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