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 Post subject: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 1:03 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 26, 2008 6:28 am
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Location: Ottawa, Ontario
Year and Trim: 1999 Bonneville SSEi
It has come time to replace some of the exhaust on my Bonne. The muffler is the main part that has let go, but being complete original welded exhaust it would appear I need to replace from the catalytic back.
I am contemplating doing it all in one shot from the down pipe back, including a high flow catalytic and muffler. I looked at ZZP, Intense. Borla, Walker, and Magnaflow. None of them seem to show anything for performance exhaust for my car. ZZP does have a 3" down pipe and catalytic and that is all. Walker only shows a stock system and no "Dynomax" muffler or catalytic.
I took some time to read some of the exhaust threads here....and this is what I have concluded. (please correct if I am wrong).
1) Exhaust sound is VERY VERY personal, there is no right or wrong "sound" for your car.

2) Unless your car is pushing OVER 400 HP at the crank, a 3" down pipe and a high flow catalytic will give you the most bang for your buck performance wise.

3) For my car (1999 Bonneville W/ 3.8 SC series II) stock 2 1/2" catalytic back pipe to muffler will create enough back pressure to keep the torque up on the car.

4) Keep the resonator, as it stops drone and helps with the sound.

5) Stock muffler is OK but if I want a bit more rumble a high flow muffler will be good (wont give ANY increase in performance)

ALL this being said... I stopped by Stebro performance exhaust today to get a quote.
I am looking at about $1400 CDN to do a stainless exhaust from the down pipe back including high flow catalytic resonator and high flow tuned muffler.
This includes a lifetime warranty on all parts for as long as I own the car. also they will tune the exhaust for the sound I am looking for.

By the way, Stebro has been doing performance exhaust since 1956, they have mostly specialized in euro cars, and now are doing more North American.

So all the gearheads am i in the ballpark for my car?

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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 1:09 pm 
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That sounds like a LOT of money for am exhaust for a 3800...

My vote? ZZP 3" DP & HF Cat, 2.5" the rest of the way back, using an F-Body (Camaro) cross-flow muffler. I can't see how that's gonna cost $1,400. DP & Cat is around $200, muffler is around $100, rez is probably $75, and the tubing would be around $100 if you replace it all. That's around $500, so you're paying $900 labor and for a warranty? See if they'll drop their price if you supply all the parts except the tubing.

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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 1:15 pm 
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Location: Dekalb Il
Year and Trim: 96 olds cutlass supreme 4 door
ill say this much..all the exhaust work on every one of my cars/trucks...two things happen
1) i buy the parts they put them on

2) its gotta be loud-ish enough to where i can hear it under all conditions
not to mention its gotta sound good to my ears

GMC Guy wrote:
1) Exhaust sound is VERY VERY personal, there is no right or wrong "sound" for your car.

so very true, so no matter what gets said in this thread, you need to like the final product and sound and you need to be happy with what you paid, and happy with what you got for your money

good luck :beerchug:

p.s as far as your set up goes, if it were me, i would run a 3" Down pipe, HF cat, stock resonator and a nice set of flowmasters or borla mufflers..those two brands last the best (IMO) and also gives the better sound!

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Wake asked SSEiman01 wrote:
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Last edited by wake on Sun Oct 23, 2011 1:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 1:23 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 20, 2008 9:39 am
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Location: Montevideo, MN
Year and Trim: 1999 SSEi
1997 SSEi-Resting-353K
I wish I could find someone close to me, I have a new exhaust system that is ready to bolt on. Even has the dual slanted tips.


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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 1:23 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 19, 2008 2:14 pm
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Location: Orlando Fl
Year and Trim: '00 SSEi (proj), '99 Tahoe & '05 Bonne GXP
Here's my setup, and it really didn't cost too much...

3" ZZP downpipe (It's up to you on the cat, I got mine from Summit)
3" Magnaflow cat
3" Summit glasspack (longest one, I think 24"? This is to be used as a resonator)
3" to 2.5" reducer
2.5" Magnaflow F-body muffler
And depending on the tip size you choose, your tail pipes should match accordingly.

Now with mine, I made it in two sections, and joined them at the tail end of the res with a 3" header coupler. I want to say a total of around 700, but some of the parts I already had, and others I got on clearance through various sources.

While I can't say the exhaust added any power, it did shift the torque curve up, and makes the 3.29 gearing a bit more enjoyable.

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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 1:58 pm 
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Location: Ottawa, Ontario
Year and Trim: 1999 Bonneville SSEi
00Beast wrote:
That sounds like a LOT of money for am exhaust for a 3800...

My vote? ZZP 3" DP & HF Cat, 2.5" the rest of the way back, using an F-Body (Camaro) cross-flow muffler. I can't see how that's gonna cost $1,400. DP & Cat is around $200, muffler is around $100, rez is probably $75, and the tubing would be around $100 if you replace it all. That's around $500, so you're paying $900 labor and for a warranty? See if they'll drop their price if you supply all the parts except the tubing.


It is ALL STAINLESS including cat muffler and resonator.

$450 muffler
$200 resonator
$150 for 10 feet of pipe
$ 240 for the custom work
$ 190 for the cat
$75 for mandrel bends
$ 40 for flanges

I think that covers all of it... and I need the car to pass emission tests as well.

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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 2:10 pm 
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A Magnaflow muffler is all stainless, and at least 1/2 that price. IMHO you can bring them the parts and have them do that for a lot less.

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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 2:33 pm 
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Location: Ottawa, Ontario
Year and Trim: 1999 Bonneville SSEi
00Beast wrote:
A Magnaflow muffler is all stainless, and at least 1/2 that price. IMHO you can bring them the parts and have them do that for a lot less.


Yes 00 Beast I believe you are right on bringing the parts to save money. I have been in a Bonne (2000silver bullet) with Magnaflow exhaust, it is not the sound I am going for (too much in the cabin).

Is Magnaflow the only one available for my car in stainless?

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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 2:39 pm 
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Gotta remember that Paul also has headers and a full 3" exhaust, along with other mods, along with 2 mufflers, not the cross-flow like you'd get. That's a far different exhaust than what you'd end up with.

Magnaflow is known for making full stainless mufflers. I doubt they're the only ones, but they're the best known.

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Sirius wrote:
Think about it. You’re tooling down the road in your Prius, knowing full-well that this thing being green is as big a sham as federally mandated ethanol-enriched gas, Russia pulling out of Ukraine, and Obamacare.


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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 4:55 pm 
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Year and Trim: 96 olds cutlass supreme 4 door
ive never heard a magnaflow on a 3800 that sounds good..IMHO :roll:

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96 olds cutlass supreme SL 4 door 3100 4t60 *3.33 gears* *Fe1* 115K bone stock DD
Wake asked SSEiman01 wrote:
why in the the world do you have or need Vaseline in your trunk??!!..well Leather cleans easy..


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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 5:03 pm 
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You've obviously never heard Booze's SSEi, Jovan's car, Golden Bullet's old car/Gordy's old car, etc. IMHO they sound the best on 3800's.

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Sirius wrote:
Think about it. You’re tooling down the road in your Prius, knowing full-well that this thing being green is as big a sham as federally mandated ethanol-enriched gas, Russia pulling out of Ukraine, and Obamacare.


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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 5:07 pm 
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Location: Dekalb Il
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i did a tune up and most of the stereo on Jovans car...so therefore im pretty sure ive heard his exhaust...hell i put 350 miles on jovans car by myself....betcha didnt know that did ya Ed? :twisted:

its just on a BOOSTED 3800 magnaflow doesnt sound the best..in MY opinion..and my opinion has not, will not, or will ever be...YOUR opinion :wink:

lemme reiterate this AGAIN!
GMC Guy wrote:
1) Exhaust sound is VERY VERY personal, there is no right or wrong "sound" for your car.

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96 olds cutlass supreme SL 4 door 3100 4t60 *3.33 gears* *Fe1* 115K bone stock DD
Wake asked SSEiman01 wrote:
why in the the world do you have or need Vaseline in your trunk??!!..well Leather cleans easy..


Last edited by wake on Sun Oct 23, 2011 5:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 7:15 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 26, 2008 6:28 am
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Location: Ottawa, Ontario
Year and Trim: 1999 Bonneville SSEi
oops... did I start another war?

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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 7:27 pm 
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I guess. My advice is up there somewhere. It's your car, do what suits your tastes and wallet best.

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Sirius wrote:
Think about it. You’re tooling down the road in your Prius, knowing full-well that this thing being green is as big a sham as federally mandated ethanol-enriched gas, Russia pulling out of Ukraine, and Obamacare.


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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 10:02 pm 
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95 SLE (SC)
97 Buick LeSabre
Don't compare your car to the bullet. I've driven it, built parts for it, worked on it, and heard it more times than any other member here. Your exhaust is a totally different design and format, even in stock form. Magnaflow will give you the mellowest tone with no drone assuming you keep a high-flow cat and resonator.

Paul has no cat, headers, 3", etc. His taste is different than yours, and his car was different to begin with.

Your prices are more than double what they should be on some components.

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Last edited by willwren on Sun Oct 23, 2011 10:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 10:48 pm 
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GMC Guy wrote:
also they will tune the exhaust for the sound I am looking for.

The way I see it, you can put together your own components and have them just install it for much less, but if you're not happy with it, then too bad. So what does this "tune" entail? Sounds like its the only thing that implies the price they are asking.

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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 10:58 pm 
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willwren is gonna throw a rock at me (plus I'm not a gearhead), but I like the sound of a stock Maremont dual tail pipe muffler (1 in, 2 out). I have a 30 second video posted of what mine sounds like. It's the closest I've heard from a 6 that sounds closest to my '69 SS396 did when it was new. - BC

EDIT: okay, here's the video. I copied the link on photobucket where it is. - BC
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Last edited by 1oldman on Sun Oct 23, 2011 11:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2011 7:54 am 
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I haven't seen a video yet that properly represents the actual sound.

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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2011 4:35 pm 
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Location: Ottawa, Ontario
Year and Trim: 1999 Bonneville SSEi
I hope no one here thinks i was comparing my car to 2000 silver bullet!!

Mine is NOTHING like it...

It is the ONLY 3800 I have heard in person with a performance exhaust.
I realize it was probably a bad choice of car to reference, but most here I think would understand what I was talking about with the cabin sound on the bullet.

Yes Mr. Wren the prices are more... it is one reason I posted this thread...
If I may ask... in my original post, did I cover the important aspects of what to get to improve the performance?

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 Post subject: Re: 1999 SSEi Exhaust
PostPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2011 5:22 pm 
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The headers give a more throaty sound anyways.

I would just try to find an exhaust system from the JY, thought that all 96+ SSEi's had stainless exhaust?

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