First-Gen Camaro Exhaust - Flowing Low

Our Slammed F-Body Gets A Set Of Cool Pipes That Are Sure Not To Be A Smashing Hit

Terry Cole Sep 1, 2000 0 Comment(s)
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The suspension of our Classical Resurrection Camaro has been tuned to give a cool stance and, we're sure, terrific handling. But, you might wonder, how are we going get a free-breathing exhaust system to fit beneath the lowered underbelly without major clearance problems? The answer comes in the form of this dual-exhaust, single-muffler Flowmaster system designed to tuck neatly under a lowered first-generation Camaro. Add in a set of shorty Hedman headers and speed bumps should be no problem.

Just when you thought we had given up on our Classical Resurrection Camaro, the first-gen F-body has resurfaced with another cool twist. As we move closer to getting the car ready for some hot summertime cruising, we're realizing that there are a few special requirements that need to be met. But make no mistake about it, we're on a mission and definitely up to the challenge of getting the cruiser finished and on the road.

In this case, since the car is so close to terra firma (thanks in a big way to the 2-inch dropped spindles and adjustable coilover shocks from Superior Spindles), we were met with the stark realization that the underside of the headers and their accompanying collectors were on a straight path to destruction once the final ride height was arrived at. In simple terms, they were sitting on the ground! Furthermore, we soon envisioned how pancaked the mufflers were going to be the first time we encountered a speed bump. Back to the drawing board, we thought. Maybe it was time to investigate an airbag suspension, or worse yet, jack the thing up.

Then came the phone call from our good friend Brian Moberley at Flowmaster with news of a dual exhaust system designed specifically for early Camaros that have had their suspension height lowered. Voila, perfect solution. But, we thought, how can we stuff two-even slim-mufflers under the lowered floorboards? The answer was simple after we saw the press release. There aren't two mufflers, there's only one. And, it fits in the stock location!

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The Flowmaster system comes complete from headpipe to exit tips. The 2 1/2-inch heavy-duty aluminized tubing is mandrel bent and features an H-pipe connection and a large single muffler, which essentially mounts in the stock location. Tips come straight out the back, but in our case, we had them modified so they would dump out right after the rear tires.

One muffler, dual exhaust? Something doesn't add up, we reasoned. Well, as it turns out, this system uses a large dual-chambered muffler with two inlets and two outlets, accommodating the dual pipes from the collectors to the tips. And, with an H-pipe included, the sound is destined to be nothing short of awesome-as well as balanced. Again, our excitement level grew as we realized that we'd be able to keep the slammed look and actually drive it as well (forget the air bags on this baby!).

Then reality set in once again: What to do about the header collectors? Well, that's where the tubing experts at Hedman came in. They make a set of shorty pipes that exit just above the bottom of the floor. That meant we could keep the entire exhaust system-from the collectors on back-firmly away from the ground. In fact, the way it turned out, the subframe and K-member will hit the pavement before our aluminized 2 1/2-inch tubes will.

When the kit arrived we were extremely pleased at the quality and completeness of the package. Everything is included, from gaskets to all the required nuts and bolts. So, after loading the Camaro onto our H&H trailer, it was off to The Muffler Man (and our buddy Craig Watts) down the street from the office to have the headers and pipes installed. It took Craig the better part of one afternoon to put all of the pieces together (it took longer than expected due in part to a good lunch and the extra labor required to push the yet-to-be-driveable-or steerable-F-body into the shop and up on to the lift).

For an expert like Craig, the job wasn't hard. He did, per our request, make one adjustment by modifying the tips so they exit out just behind the rear wheels instead of straight out the back. Other than that, the Flowmaster system provides enough clearance and is neatly mounted the entire length of the Camaro's underbelly. To see how easy and clean a fit this collection of tubing is, follow along as we show you how you can have the driving pleasure of a lowered Camaro without taking a big hit on the pipes.

Sources

The Muffler Man
Placentia, CA 92870
714-524-7818
http://www.ocmufflerman.com
Flow Master
Santa Rosa, CA 95407
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