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I'm fairly sure my car's pretty loud.  Of course it's hard to say without a decibel meter.  But I'm almost embarrassed turning it on for my neighbors (and try to avoid pulling back home later at night), it sort of tires out me/passengers after say 15 min of driving, and in small downtown strips it turns heads before I even pass the pedestrians.  The silver lining of that last one is that people get a good early look at the car and give thumbs up, which is fun, but I don't think it's worth the "headache."

More specifically, it sounds very much like a motorcycle as opposed to the smooth hum of this original that was recently posted in another thread: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4rnBcnflXvE.  If it were an outlaw style speedster or an American muscle car, then loud would've been great.

I've been told that installing any of these would cut noise:



I'd appreciate any wisdom on any of this.  Attaching some photos of the engine & exhaust system in case that's helpful:

IMG_4616IMG_3920

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What the car in the video sounds like is a stock VW exhaust.

What you have in your photo is most of that, swapping out that big can across the back, and that can probably doesn't have much for noise-cancelling baffles inside.

Question:  What size is your engine?

If it is a 1,600 up to a 1,776 you, too, could run a stock VW muffler like this:

https://www2.cip1.com/ProductD...3%2D251%2D053%2DAKKT

Dansk, in the Netherlands, made all of the mufflers for VW Beetles for like, forever, so if you've heard an old Beetle, that's what'cha get.  Nice and quiet, just like your video.

Be warned that you absolutely NEED the two chromed tail pipes for a quiet engine as they drop the noise level by about half.  You'll also look like the Pre-A 356's as they pretty much ran the same (Dansk) system.  It should bolt right up.

Also be warned that you may, depending on your engine size, feel a slight drop in performance (which means you can sneak by people before they notice you because you're a lot quieter).

$124 bucks for that system is a really good deal, too.  If you don't like it you can sell it to a local VW owner for about what you pay for it.

That looks like a $150 EMPI GT 2 Tip Glass Pack Muffler that fits Standard and Super Beetles as well as Karmann Ghias with 1300cc to 1600cc based engine.  I bet all the muffling fiberglass has blown out or settled/compacted.  I'd also check for carbon evidence of leaks at joints, where the heat exchangers mount to engine, and around head to cylinder mating surfaces.  Looks like very clean engine so should be easy to see..  Neither your intake manifold nor the exhaust use the heat riiser tubs so don't need the block off plates.  Ate your head exchanger maybe rusted internally - car would probably smell like exhaust/oily when heat is on.

My speedie has a 1776 with dual Dellorto carbs. My exhaust is this 4- tip GT exhaust from Empi: https://www.jbugs.com/product/3414.html. It's reasonably quiet, yet still a little bit throaty, unlike the stock VW exhaust. I've discovered that most of the noise I hear while driving is actually from the intakes of my Dellortos. The car gets pretty quiet inside when I put up the top, the wife and I can have a conversation at two-lane backroad speeds without shouting. Can't do that with the top down.

I'm finishing an MG TD replica. It came with the same 4-tip GT exhaust on a 1500 single port. It's rather quiet, without that distinctive VW whistle. I'm changing it to this single-tip GT exhaust, also from Empi: https://www.jbugs.com/product/3487.html. I imagine it will be just as quiet, perhaps moreso, but the reason I'm changing is because the single tip looks more aesthetically correct on an MG TD. I hope this helps.

Last edited by Eric (McGruff)

How old is your exhaust, Sean?  I'm with Wolfgang. I suspect your glass pack done packed up and left.

From the looks of it, you don't want to put OEM tailpipes on it, I think they'd be too restrictive. OTOH, an appropriate length pair of these might work. https://www.appletreeauto.com/...QOUwL8RoCs5oQAvD_BwE

Are your tailpipes open?  That could be amplifying the noise. As for baffle inserts, I did that to mine. It didn't so much make it quieter than it changed it to a more pleasant note.

Last edited by dlearl476

I'm finishing an MG TD replica. It came with the same 4-tip GT exhaust on a 1500 single port. It's rather quiet, without that distinctive VW whistle. I'm changing it to this single-tip GT exhaust, also from Empi: https://www.jbugs.com/product/3487.html. I imagine it will be just as quiet, perhaps moreso, but the reason I'm changing is because the single tip looks more aesthetically correct on an MG TD. I hope this helps.

That single tip GT kit looks exactly like what a stock MG TD had. It's like it was made for those kits. I had one on Bridget before I swapped the Subaru engine in it and it looked and sounded great. I would not use it on anything bigger than a 1641 though.

@WNGD posted:

Why don't you post a video of your own car so we can hear it? Maybe you've just gotten old?

Thanks all for the superb feedback as always.  I'm posting a few videos in case it might help with the diagnosis.  Of course, it'll never be like standing next to the car in person, but maybe some things can be determined.  I used a decent quality mic to try to remove the variable of a bad recording in the first place.  Of course, it depends on the position of the mic, your speakers, and your volume.  I suggest turning the volume up for best/accurate results 😊.  

First one is in the garage, so it's going to be louder.  Then out on the street.  Then in an alleyway to garage.  I tried to record a few on the open roads, but the mic picked up a ton of wind, basically making those recordings useless.  I can try again with a better mic position if anyone thinks that'd be helpful.

Sorry for the Dropbox link that'll probably disappear some day, forum direct video uploads kept erroring out:

To me I did detect an exhaust leak and possibly some valve noise but I'm no expert. I'd make sure the whole system is leak free from the J-tubes on down and adjust the valves to make sure the lash is set properly. If none of that works then it may need a new exhaust.

The Tri-Mil Exhaust came stock on almost all of the cars built by VS on their stock size engines. They are very quiet and not a lot of money.

Last edited by Robert M
@Robert M posted:

To me I did detect an exhaust leak and possibly some valve noise but I'm no expert. I'd make sure the whole system is leak free from the J-tubes on down and adjust the valves to make sure the lash is set properly. If none of that works then it may need a new exhaust.

The Tri-Mil Exhaust came stock on almost all of the cars built by VS on their stock size engines. They are very quiet and not a lot of money.

Thanks, at this point I'll take whatever option is quietest just to not take chances.  I know this isn't the kind of thing people just readily know, unless we "taste tested" a "flight" of mufflers side by side under the same conditions.  Eg, in various prior threads where people have sought out the quietest exhaust system, I've had trouble confidently sussing out which is the quietest.  

But any inkling which is quietest?  The Tri-Mil versus the Dansk that @Gordon Nichols posted (Gordon I meant to answer mine's a 1641cc).  Both look like good options.  Or any others?

That just looks like a bent fin, Greg, but there certainly sounds like the huffing of an exhaust leak going on, too.  To amplify on what Robert said, above:

@Sean Seena take a close look around where the exhaust pipes connect to the heads.  You may see small black stains where the exhaust is leaking out.  Same thing where the heater boxes connect to the muffler - those slip-joints are notorious for leaking.  If you find leaks, you'll need new exhaust gaskets or at least tighten the flanges up.  Be careful that you don't over-tighten them - it's a steel stud threaded into the aluminum head and they strip out if you're not careful.

Regardless, you may not like the sound even if you cure the exhaust leaks so a newer, quieter system may be in order so let's see what others are running on here.  Mine is a Berg extractor and it seems to get progressively louder as I get older.  

Dansk makes a very nice (stock) system which would work well with your 1641 and be quiet.  If you've ever heard a Volkswagen original Beetle, that's what they sound like as long as you install the chrome-tip resonators with it.  Leave off the resonators and the sound level almost doubles.  You would want one for a sedan or Karman Ghia 1970 - 1974  (the 1600cc years before smog pumps and stuff).  If you have dual carbs now you won't need the carburetor manifold heater tubes.  If that's the only way they come you can buy some block-off plates for those tubes and cap them without hurting anything.

Last edited by Gordon Nichols

That just looks like a bent fin, Greg, but there certainly sounds like the huffing of an exhaust leak going on, too.  To amplify on what Robert said, above:

@Sean Seena take a close look around where the exhaust pipes connect to the heads.  You may see small black stains where the exhaust is leaking out.  Same thing where the heater boxes connect to the muffler - those slip-joints are notorious for leaking.  If you find leaks, you'll need new exhaust gaskets or at least tighten the flanges up.  Be careful that you don't over-tighten them - it's a steel stud threaded into the aluminum head and they strip out if you're not careful.

Regardless, you may not like the sound even if you cure the exhaust leaks so a newer, quieter system may be in order so let's see what others are running on here.  Mine is a Berg extractor and it seems to get progressively louder as I get older.  

Dansk makes a very nice (stock) system which would work well with your 1641 and be quiet.  If you've ever heard a Volkswagen original Beetle, that's what they sound like as long as you install the chrome-tip resonators with it.  Leave off the resonators and the sound level almost doubles.  You would want one for a sedan or Karman Ghia 1970 - 1974  (the 1600cc years before smog pumps and stuff).  If you have dual carbs now you won't need the carburetor manifold heater tubes.  If that's the only way they come you can buy some block-off plates for those tubes and cap them without hurting anything.

FWIW, a stick of incense makes a good low budget leak detector. I've been convinced I had a bad seal between my head and header, but the incense says no.  

Smells good, too. I prefer green tea flavor.

@WOLFGANG posted:

I can't tell if a head fin is just bent or the heads are loose.  I'd check the circled area out.

vs

See the source image

I think what you're seeing is simply camera angle. I just had a (failed) experiment in trying to photograph a part against a rule to explain dimensions of a part I'm trying to get 3D printed. No matter what I did, I couldn't get the correct dimension to show up in the photographs. The camera exaggerated every error 2-3 times.

Those hoses for the external oil cooler/full-flow oil filter definitely should not be routed between the cooling tins and the cylinders. Not only will the hot air eventually dry out the rubber hoses, but that tin foil heat shielding will raise static pressure and reduce airflow on that side of the engine, which already runs hot.

Not to mention wrapped around the heat exchangers.

@Sean Seena posted:

Thanks, at this point I'll take whatever option is quietest just to not take chances.  I know this isn't the kind of thing people just readily know, unless we "taste tested" a "flight" of mufflers side by side under the same conditions.  Eg, in various prior threads where people have sought out the quietest exhaust system, I've had trouble confidently sussing out which is the quietest.  

But any inkling which is quietest?  The Tri-Mil versus the Dansk that @Gordon Nichols posted (Gordon I meant to answer mine's a 1641cc).  Both look like good options.  Or any others?

My 1776 cc VS came with the Tri-Mil and it was pretty quiet so that’s the only one I have direct knowledge of. It is definitely quieter than the exhaust I have now on my 2110 cc motor which is an original 356 exhaust.

Gordon has experience with the Dansk and it sounds comparable. Throw the dice or let your budget decide for now.

Last edited by Robert M

If a picture is worth 1k words, a video is worth at least 10k?  Hopefully this vid helps: https://www.dropbox.com/s/v1o6...gine%20view.MOV?dl=0

Re the hoses, yes the mechanic I started working with issue-spotted it (who's been great btw and I'll followup on in that other thread about LA mechanics).  I kinda put it on the back burner until the bigger problems were resolved.  Which I think might be soon hopefully.

Make sure the heads are bolted on tight. Believe it or not they can loosen and it does make quite a racket. Happened to one of our TD guys a few years ago at Carlisle.

Get an open wrench and check the top ones. Pull the valve covers and put a socket on the ones in there. If ANY turn you need a torque wrench. Loosen them all and then tighten them in sequence to 23 pounds.

Get under there and look for exhaust leaks. Make sure there are not at any of the pipe flanges, or in the slip joint. Once you're sure everything is tight and nothing is leaking, THEN buy a new exhaust system.

If you do that, buy new oil line too. You want those running back (toward you) and outside the sheet metal under the engine. Go the long way around to the oil cooler and back.

Sean

When was the last time the valves were adjusted?  To me the engine seems to be louder than the exhaust.  I had a Trimill exhaust and thought it sounded good, not too loud not too quite.

Contact the guys at Vintage Speed and tell what the style and noise level you  desire.  These guys can make it as loud or quite as you want.  Their poducts are top notch with superb craftmenship.  They are in Tiawan, not China.

This exhaust you have looks like a Tri-Mil or EMPI clone. They are nice but loud; I used to have one in my car; I would drive with the motor idling in some streets and it would trigger car alarms as I passed; maybe a question of frequency rather than volume but it was rather throaty and nice. I later traded it for a stainless steel Vintage Speed unit for Speedster replica; basically sounds like a real 356, which is not much different than a stock VW Bug:

http://vwparts.aircooled.net/V...-p/155-204-052sf.htm

Last edited by Impala


...

If it is a 1,600 up to a 1,776 you, too, could run a stock VW muffler like this:

https://www2.cip1.com/ProductD...3%2D251%2D053%2DAKKT

Dansk, in the Netherlands, made all of the mufflers for VW Beetles for like, forever, so if you've heard an old Beetle, that's what'cha get.  Nice and quiet, just like your video.

...

@Gordon Nichols I've intended to follow your recommendation because it was stock, simple, quiet, and quite inexpensive.  But since your post last Nov, the kit's been out of stock.  CIP1 said it would auto order, but today they told me that Dansk itself is out of stock, and CIP1 probably won't have it for another 2-3 months, minimum.  Maybe pandemic related?

However, there are also:

VWC-113-251-053-AKKT - (113251053A) COMPLETE 13-1600CC MUFFLER KIT - OE QUALITY MADE IN EUROPE - INCLUDES MOUNTING CLAMPS/HARDWARE / GASKETS/TAIL PIPES - BEETLE/GHIA 66-74 EXCEPT 1974 CALIFORNIAN MODELS - SOLD KIT

&

VWC-35021Z - (113-251-053A 113251053A) COMPLETE 13-1600CC MUFFLER KIT - OE QUALITY MADE IN EUROPE - INCLUDES MOUNTING CLAMPS/HARDWARE/GASKETS/TAIL PIPES - BEETLE/GHIA 66-74 EXCEPT 1974 CALIFORNIAN MODELS - SOLD KIT

These both seem very similar to the one you linked, I'm assuming they're all interchangeable and you happened to just link that other one?  I'm keen on ordering the former link (VWC-113-251-053-AKKT) which is currently $135.  Seems pretty straightforward, I'm just asking in an abundance of caution, because why would they have different variations?  The CIP1 gent helping me wasn't sure why this was the case himself...

Ps, it seems the difference between these 2 that I just linked is that the former originally comes as a kit whereas the latter is a kit that CIP1 groups together from separate parts (you'll see it parted out when added to cart).  CIP1 said that's probably why the latter is more expensive than the former.  So it pays to shop your options...

I looked at both as well as all of the other options Cip1 offers and I can't tell much difference, either, so go with your gut and get the AKKT model.   I wish we were closer - I have a Monza-style one in my shop attic, taking up space, although that might be a little louder.

Usually, the only differences are thickness and quality of metal used to make it and that explains why the Brazilian and Mexican models don't seem to last as long - they're made of thinner metal.  

BTW, few, if any VW mufflers were made in Germany,  which is why they always say "made in Europe" not Made in Germany on them.  The Dansk ones come from Denmark, Spain and Belgium (among others).

@Gordon Nichols thanks, looks like the VWC-113-251-053-AKKT it is, I better order before it's out of stock too.  Ps, CIP1 had told me that in September they'd bought ~85 units of the one you had originally linked, so apparently they were selling them at ~40 / month.  Not bad.

@DannyP @JMM (Michael) I know one purpose for ceramic coating is for longevity as mentioned above, and it definitely looks nice too ("chrome" finish would beautify the area and match the tail pipes), so I'll look into it just for those reasons.  But any effect on noise?  Secondly, just to start gathering price points, what's the average cost for the service?

"I know one purpose for ceramic coating is for longevity as mentioned above, and it definitely looks nice too ("chrome" finish would beautify the area and match the tail pipes), so I'll look into it just for those reasons. But any effect on noise? Secondly, just to start gathering price points, what's the average cost for the service?" - @Sean Seena

Sean, in our application ceramic coating exhaust systems is for looks and longevity. As for cost of ceramic coating on an exhaust system,  add about $250-$300 (US dollars) to a similar non-ceramic exhaust.

On my VS (1915cc mild cam, 40-IDF carbs) I have a ceramic A-1 Sidewinder exhaust with flanged fittings on the heater-box pipes. Click on pics to enlargeIMG_0390IMG_0393

This particular exhaust was not specific to my car so it sits lower than it should. This exhaust was the only one available at the time of my engine build and was used (at the cost of non-ceramic) instead of waiting another 2 months for a exact fit.

Here is a comparison of A-1 Sidewinder in my car vs my buddy SOCer "Dutch" with properly fitted A-1 system.20140921_170834

The lower system kinda gives the car a 'hot rod" look.11165141_382241331975071_1708599675787756813_o

Here is a video to reference the sound of an A-1 Sidewinder. This video was made with my previous VS with 1835cc, 1.25 rockers, 38 IDF carbs. Nice aggressive sound on acceleration but a mild tone at cruising speed (not an annoying droning sound).

I hope you find this information useful!

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Last edited by MusbJim

@MusbJim Thanks for that very thorough and informative post!  I've seen your exhaust video a few times around the forum, very helpful.  I've bought the VWC-113-251-053-AKKT / (113251053A) discussed above, I'll try to recreate my demo drives to provide a comparison for future SOCers.  Being that I don't even know what exhaust is on there now, it's not a great before/after comparison, but hopefully it'll at least be something people could synchronize on when discussing this stuff.

Ps, I'm envious of your beehive taillights, double louvered deck lid, and wide rear tires, you've got the works!

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