Running without Mufflers?

Information and questions on GL1200 Goldwings (1984-1987)
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Posts: 64
Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2012 1:07 pm
Location: Rolla, Missouri
Motorcycle: 1984 GL 1200 Standard

Running without Mufflers?

Post by filupsd » Mon Sep 14, 2015 3:47 pm

I have pulled off my mufflers to sand and polish out some rust and in general buff out scratches. Yesterday I wanted to go for a ride so I started it up and literally roared down the highway. By the way an unmuffled boxer motor turns heads cause it is LOUD. Someone said I shouldn't run without mufflers because it is bad for the engine but couldn't really say how it was bad. someone else said it's because there isn't any back pressure. If that's the case how do all these Harley guys run with straight exhaust? And not damage their engine.

I'm not saying I want to run straight pipes all the time but it would be fun to drown out a couple Harleys now and then.

Opinions please.

Posts: 112
Joined: Tue Oct 01, 2013 10:04 pm
Location: Cedar Rapids, Ia
Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Aspencade
1989 GL1500 Aspencade

Re: Running without Mufflers?

Post by rzaugg » Fri Sep 18, 2015 3:37 pm

There is a noticeable loss of top end, and an increase of low end with less back pressure in the exhaust. Kind of depends on ignition and cam timing to cover that problem. (That's how the drag racers do it). The biggest concern I would have if you are just using the headers and nothing more, is that when you shut it off, if an exhaust valve happens to be open, the cooler air can get to the valve and possibly "warp" it. Don't know whether the headers are long enough to cover this or not. We always used to stuff a rag in the end of the muffler (that was gutted of course) in our motocross bikes. If you put a length of pipe on it, I would think you would be fine.

Bring ear plugs!

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