Tim Suddard
Tim Suddard Publisher
10/21/08 7:33 a.m.

With our wheels installed and our Tiger running and driving, it was time to build an exhaust system. For many of our project cars, we can just order a finished exhaust system. While the Tiger aftermarket does recreate stock exhaust systems, they wouldn't work for our particular car. Our Tiger's stock exhaust system features a small pipe, a cobbled-together stock Fairlane, and custom-made cast-iron exhaust manifolds, making it barely adequate for a stock 260-cubic-inch Ford small block, never mind the stroker motor we built.

As we mentioned earlier, we ended up using a set of CAT headers that we modified slightly to fit our car. We sent these headers to Swain Tech Coatings, where they promised a durable, good-looking finish that would keep engine temps down.

Wow, Swain Tech delivered in spades! We chose a dull silver coating for our headers, and not only does the finished product look good, but the color has not changed or darkened a bit. Plus, the coating didn't chip at all when we installed the engine, even when we scratched stuff against it. We broke out the digital pyrometer to do some testing: While the water temperature was over 200 degrees, the headers read only 420 degrees--roughly half the temperature we'd usually expect. We were so impressed that we will most likely send every header we ever use to Swain Tech Coatings.

With the headers already installed and hanging below the car, it was simply a matter of designing an exhaust system to replicate the 1.75-inch diameter stock exhaust system that came with the car. We would use larger-diameter pipe and mufflers with a bit more performance edge.

There are some real restrictions when building a Tiger exhaust system. First, to avoid hitting the ground, you must route the exhaust system through the purpose-built cutouts in the frame. The largest-diameter pipe that will fit through here without flattening or rubbing issues is about 2.25 inches.

We went to the best muffler shop in our area, A&W Muffler in South Daytona, Fla. Owner Steve Davis has a hot MG Midget and certainly likes and respects higher-end British cars and other exotics. He suggested a pair of Magnaflow mufflers and an aluminized exhaust system that starts at 2.25-inches, then widens to 2.5 inches after going through the frame cutouts.

Since we still had the original exhaust system from our Tiger, we brought it with us so that Steve could mimic the original contours and 45-degree diagonal chrome tips.

Steve told us that the Magnaflow muffler would be quieter than a Flowmaster and flow better than the Walker Dynomax. He also told us that, like the original Tiger exhaust system, no resonators would be needed. We told Steve we wanted the system to be a bit rorty, yet not drone on the highway. We were skeptical about not running resonators, but he was right: When you tear through the gears, you know our Tiger is coming, but it settles into a delightful murmur at highway speeds.

The entire exhaust system set us back about $400, which we thought was very reasonable considering the fact that the guys at A&W Muffler--Steve and his assistant, Dan Beaulieu--did such a quality job.

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ptonizzo None
11/3/08 9:20 a.m.

Hi Tim,

Any chance you have the Magnaflow mufler part# you used? thanks, Paul

Tim Suddard
Tim Suddard Publisher
11/19/08 3:33 p.m.

Sorry it took me a while to get back to you. I have been traveling like crazy. The 14" shell is offset and carries part number 11225

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