Techin’ in with Fletch - August 2013

Dan Fletcher Aug 1, 2013 0 Comment(s)
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Nova Header Swap

I have a ’73 Nova with a 350 engine and a four-speed transmission. It has the factory dual exhaust straight to the mufflers. The exhaust pipes are chrome, so I’d like to keep them. I really want to lose the stock exhaust manifolds and install direct fit headers. I can find them readily for later models, but I can’t seem to locate them for mine. Can you please help me?

Tom Koehler

Via email

Unfortunately, I’m afraid a direct-fit header for your application is not readily available, at least not that I’ve been able to locate. With that said, both Hedman (PN 68600) and Hooker (PN 2466) make a shorty header that you may be able to adapt to your chrome pipes with some careful and precise fabrication work. Obviously, you’d have to have your pipes altered somewhat, but hopefully the ugly spot would be hidden in the tunnel. Not a perfect answer, but one hell of a lot closer to fitting than a set of long tubes.

If it were me, I’d probably just decide what I really wanted more, headers or chrome pipes. If I chose headers, which I would, then I’d simply go with some ceramic coated long tubes and just fill in the blanks from there on back. As a much tattooed biker I once met had emblazoned upon his person, chrome don’t get ya home …

Shell Game

We are currently building a ’69 Camaro SS big-block car. We received the vehicle as pretty much a shell, with most of the parts in boxes. We are at the point of putting the frame together, and we have new engine mount frame brackets. There is one tall one and one short one, and we need to know which is right and which is left. Also, regarding the coil springs, are the coil springs for a ’68 Corvette the same as those for our ’69 Camaro? Can you tell us if they will work?

Thanks for all your techin’ in support.

Tony & Lisa

Via email

The taller mount is for the driver’s side of the car. It should measure 2.5 inches in height. The shorter one is for passenger side and should measure 2 inches in height. Please do ensure that you, in fact, have big-block mounts, as the small-block frame mounts will not locate the engine properly. And yes, unfortunately, as someone that has had virtually every engine configuration known to man in a ’69 Camaro, I know this from personal experience.

As for the coil spring interchangeability between a ’68 Vette and your ’69 Camaro, that would be a large negatory.

True Duals

I love, love, love your magazine! Reading it over the years has converted me from a “factory original” Chevy guy to a custom Chevy guy. I’m building a custom ’68 Camaro convertible and I’m having trouble finding a way to put true dual exhaust on it. Nobody seems to sell a turnkey exhaust system for it due to t It’s priced similarly to its competition, but if can’t afford even a 1LT base model, it’ll be too much no matter the cost. It’s priced similarly to its competition, but if can’t afford even a 1LT base model, it’ll be too much no matter the cost. he center structural cross bracket. Do you know of any vendor that sells full length (headers back) dual exhaust for this car, or can you recommend a custom solution? The original exhaust was a Y-pipe single pipe configuration. I’d like to get rid of the Y-pipe design and have two full-length exhaust pipes go to either one common muffler or two separate mufflers.

Ed Handschuh

North Wales, PA

I first spoke with the fine people at Summit Racing for some input into your question, and everything that they would offer came with the caveat of “except convertible.” I was thinking that you were probably destined for a custom exhaust shop and a high dollar fabricated set up, but then I called my local experts for everything Camaro, an establishment near Buffalo, New York, called Camaro Specialties.

I spoke with Keith, a member of the knowledgeable staff there for some help, and low and behold, it offers a kit that will do what you’re looking for. Well, almost. It’s made to bolt up to the stock exhaust manifolds, not headers. But to shorten the pipes and add a flange to mate up to a header collector really shouldn’t be too big of a chore. The kit is something that they pretty much have come up with on their own for customers like you with similar wants and desires. It is a factory aluminized dual exhaust with transverse mount featuring 2.25-inch main pipes with 2-inch tailpipes. It’s a single muffler design that is housed in the stock location. It is reasonably priced at $359. You can check out their website with the following link

Keith did say that some people simply remove the factory brace to facilitate proper clearance, but that is something he and I highly recommended against.




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