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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-26-2013, 08:10 PM Thread Starter
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Yet another exhaust question

I am looking for a new set of pipes. I had originally dismissed the curved pipes as I have a LT and thought the flat bottom of the bags and the curve would not look/fit good.

However, after listening to everything I could find one youtube my favorite sound was the V&H big Radius, plus my hope is that the curve of the pipe directs the noise towards the pavement and not the passenger (gotta keep her happy)

I am looking for a low rumbling at the stop sign with a bit of smack when you twist the throttle but something that doesn't leave you deaf after an hour commute to work (or 5 hours to Americade)

I photoshopped these pipes on a LT and really liked the way the curve of the pipe matched the curve of the back of the bag. There seems to be plent of clearance between the bag and the pipe. In short the look is growing on me.

I have a few questions though for anyone with these pipes installed -

Any smartphone can get an app to measure decibels. Has anyone found a site that has decibel ratings for different pipes?

Do these install ok with passenger floorboards or do they boards get in the way of the pipes?

If they fit is there enough gap between board and pipe to keep the passengers right foot from roasting?

Thanks - jeff
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-27-2013, 06:17 AM
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I just put a set of Big Radius on my Vulcan. My commute is about 20 minutes.Here are some thoughts...

They are loud. You'll be wanting hearing protection, or an alternative baffle.

I have a sound meter on my phone, and have used it. But, I'm not sure I trust the results. The problem with cell phone sound meters is the microphone: most cell phone microphones can't handle loud sounds (upper limit is 75db iirc).

I never found a site that had db ratings for pipes.

I don't have passenger floorboards, so I can't comment.

It's the bottom space that's a problem for me. I've already scraped my lower pipe. It extends below the frame a small amount. You'll want to pay attention to this if your'e the type that scrapes pegs a lot (like me).

"Never attribute to malice, that which can be attributed to stupidity."

2010 Vulcan 900 Custom
Cobra PowerFlo Intake
Vance & Hines Big Radius Exhaust
Cobra Fi2000AT Fuel Pack
VulcanLife's Control Extensions
Baron's Front Pulley
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-27-2013, 12:38 PM
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I just ordered these for my custom, yeh I know its a different bike, but the frame is the same and I have hard luggage on the bike .





I will be installing these when I get home, probably next week, so I can take a pic and let you know. I suspect they are going to be loud, certainly more than stock, but they do come baffled from the store. I wear ear plugs when I ride anyway, and I suspect my neighbor will want to as well. Still I am hoping that the down turned pipe ends with my bags will muffle the sound a little. I specifically got these due to the bags and because they are a shorter and lower pipe at the ends.


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2009 Classic LT Bagger ... SOLD .... ... Batwing Fairing, Metzler 200 rear, Mutazu Hard Bags, Denray Hitch, Mustang Seat, Piggybacker Trailer. traded on a Versys 650 LT ... Loaded

2010 Custom [I] ... traded on a 2015 Ninja 650 Abs traded on a 2016 Versys 650 LT ... Loaded

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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-13-2013, 03:57 PM Thread Starter
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So I ordered the big radius. The install took two sessions as I either managed to misplace 4 hose clamps or was shorted 4 hose clamps. Trip #1.

Day two I got the all the heat shields on and everything tightened and cleaned. Fired her up - wow - great sound but loud. Took it down the highway and decided I needed additional baffles.

Ordered smartpartz hard kore.

Took off the lower heat shields and removed the Allen screw. Spent two hours trying to pull the baffles. No luck. I need a slide hammer. Trip #2.

Slide hammer does the trick. Baffle comes out and I am surprised to see it wrap in fiberglass.

Smartpartz install instruction stink. They want you to drill a new hole in the baffle right next to the old on and then rotate the entire unit in the pipe. This would work fir straight pipes but not curved. I need a grinding wheel to remove the spot welded nut from the original baffle Trip #3 - I save a later trip and return the slide hammer to autozone

Several hours later I am able to remove the nut and finally install everything. In goes the old baffle, in goes the new baffle. In goes the Allen and immediately the new baffle pops out on the non screwed side. Wtf!

Out comes the new baffle. I do not see anyway of securing this without going back to autozone, getting the slide hammer and removing the old baffle and drilling two new holes in old and new and tightening everything down.

What am Missing?

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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-16-2013, 05:53 AM
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I can't answer your question, but I was surprised to read that the original baffles were already wrapped in fiberglass. Hmm. I was going to pull mine and wrap them... Guess I'll have to think up Plan B.

I created another post, but thought I'd mention it here for your sake: don't drag pegs with the Big Radius system. It extends below the frame and will hit well before the peg does.s

"Never attribute to malice, that which can be attributed to stupidity."

2010 Vulcan 900 Custom
Cobra PowerFlo Intake
Vance & Hines Big Radius Exhaust
Cobra Fi2000AT Fuel Pack
VulcanLife's Control Extensions
Baron's Front Pulley
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-24-2013, 10:19 AM Thread Starter
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Update:

I called Smartpartz to see if I was installing everything correctly and I was. I looked more closely at the baffles and noticed that the threaded hole in the new baffle is 7/16" from the collar whereas the hole in the exhaust is 5/16" and the new screw supplied by smartpartz is too long and bottoming out. It was the combination of the 1/8" gap and the screw being too that caused the baffle to be loose and bounce around.

I added a lock washer to the outside of the pipe but that prevented the heat shield from going back on.

Another call the smartpartz and the guy suggested I get shorter screws. Recommended 20x1/4 x 3/8. Couldn't find these so I cut down 1 inch screws.

Everything is finally installed and tight.

Here are some numbers as measured from about 2 feet away and 45 degree angle from pipe and the bike at low idle. Original pipes - 75-80 decibels. Big radius 87-95. Big radius with smartpartz 80-85.

Standing next to throttle and revving on the same order. 85-95, 95-107, 90-100

Ride wise I thought originals too quiet. Big radius was too loud. I could not listen to head phones (please no safety comments) and needing ear protection. A lot of popping on decel and was too loud to really accel fast and found myself cruising at 50-55 to limit noise. They sound great at idle, lots of throat and growl.

Big radius with smartpartz - louder than stock but I can still use headphones. Noticeably less decel popping. I am back to cruising at 65 comfortably. I accelerate quicker but I don't know if that is an increase due to better back pressure or that I am hitting it harder cause I don't feel guilty about walk g the neighbors.

My recommendation is if you want a little louder start with the extra baffles and install them before putting them on the bike. I would even go as far as to say leave the existing screw as is and drill a new hole 7/16 from the end of the pipe trim the supplied screw to 3/8 and install baffle. I would suspect this would give a tighter cleaner look and save a lot of slide hammering and dremel woes

Happy riding!


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