How-To Mount Harley Mufflers - GL1100

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How-To Mount Harley Mufflers - GL1100

Post #1 by Roady » Sun Aug 10, 2008 10:55 pm

Harley-Davidson Sportster mufflers can be easily adapted to fit most GoldWings. The chrome quality on H-D parts is absolutely stunning. Most new owners of Harleys will immediately remove the stock mufflers and put on a set of loud'n'obnoxious ones. That means that there is a ready supply of brand new pipes for us to scavenge. Ask your Harley buddy about that 24"x10"x4" box on his garage shelf. It's probably the stock mufflers off his bike. Or, check with the local H-D dealer and watch Craigslist and eBay.

Shown below is a set of 2003 Sportster mufflers installed on my bike. (NOTE: '03 was the last year for non-baffled Sporty mufflers.)

left-right.jpg

The view that most people see of my mufflers.

rearview.jpg

Here's a shot of an unmounted set of '02 Sportster mufflers.

02sportys.jpg

The two mufflers in a pair are identical except that the one you'll use on the right side has a larger hole thru its mounting tab. The one for the left side will have the stamped-in lettering on the top, outside of the mount.

There will be a dimple at the rear, on the top of the left one.

dimple.jpg

Mounting the Sportys on a GL1100

  • Remove the old mufflers and headers (be sure to get the "squash" washers out and replace them with new ones).
    .
  • Carefully cut the chrome covers off the headers. These will be remounted so don't mess them up.
    .
  • Cut and grind the header exits to get to good metal.
    .
  • Get two 4" x 1-3/4"O.D. pieces of muffler pipe at Advance Auto, AutoZone, Pepboys, etc.
    .
  • Temporarily remount the headers (without squashies), slip the bolt thru the new muffler and onto the stock mount.
    .
  • Line it all up and trim the 4" pipes to the correct angle and length.
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  • Tack weld the now-modified 4" pipes to the headers.
    .
  • Move the headers to the bench and put a good weld around the joint.
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  • Tack the chrome covers back onto the headers.
    .
  • Put in the new squash washers, install headers and torque down bolts.
    .
  • Put H-D muffler clamps (or radiator clamps) over the header ends.
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  • Slip the mufflers onto the headers. Tighten frame connection then muffler clamps.
    .
  • Go for a ride!

With the mufflers mounted directly to the stock mounts, I thought that the left one was too far out and too high. The centerstand also struck it. So I made a bracket from a 1" piece of strap steel. It's now about 1/2" too low at the end (see the rear pic above) and still maybe an inch too far out. I also added a rubber-baby-buggy-bumper to catch the centerstand. These pics were taken from the rear.

rearmounts.jpg

Initially I used radiator clamps at the junction but they blued quickly and I ended up buying a set of '02 Sportster clamps from the H-D dealer. $8 each. Again, great chrome!

h-dclamps.jpg

They sound great, rumbly but not too loud.



And a bit longer clip, just before Randakk's '09 Rally.



What about them Dyna Mufflers?

I had a set of Dyna mufflers but did not try mounting them. They are almost identical to the Sportys except 1/2" shorter and they have a different mounting arrangement

dynas.jpg

It looks like you'd need to fashion some mounting brackets for them. Perhaps the stock muffler brackets could be used for these.

dynamount.jpg

I've shown you mine so you show me yours.

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On May 20, 2014, I completed the installation of a set of Interstate panniers. To channel the exhaust I added extensions from the front of the Sportys to the rear. Below is the write-up from my "[don't] Flip This Bike" thread.

I finished up the new bags today and added exhaust extensions. The bags took some effort to clean up and to repair the rubber seals. I also transferred my old locksets. I think She's looking mighty fine.

newbags3.jpg

When removing the old bags and old exhaust shields I found a layer of soot that took me at least an hour to clean off. What a mess. This was the old way.

shield1.jpg

For the new way, I decided to go with extending the exhaust pipe to the back of the bags. That presents the problem of the angle of the Harley mufflers and the taper at the end. So I picked up 2 pieces of stock 2-1/4" pipe from AutoZone, slashed the ends and cut slots in the the fronts. To attach them, a 3/16" self-tapping bolt and a strong clamp from Rural King were used.

Left Top:
pipeext1.jpg

Left Side:
pipeext2.jpg

She sounds different with those extensions ... I kinda like it.

Here's she sits with the new sound and soot free mounting.



Notice that the LED brake lights in the bags come on before the stock set.
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Last edited by Roady on Thu Sep 03, 2009 4:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post #2 by octane » Mon Aug 11, 2008 1:31 pm

Thanks!

Good stuff!

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Harley Mufflers

Post #3 by cycleman » Mon Aug 25, 2008 2:51 pm

I too just finished installing a pair of 98-04 Sporster mufflers on my 77 wing.

I used a piece of 1 3/4 diameter exhaust pipe, had one end flared to fit over the header portion and had a 2 " offset bent into the pipe. This pipe ended up being about 10 " long ( I didn't measure it ) which moved the sportser muffler further back more in line with the location of the stock muffler. It also allows the muffler to sit lower, more in line with the stock location.

I used a piece of 1 1/2 " exhaust pipe ( smallest I could find ) to make the cross-over pipe joining the two exhaust pipes in roughly the same location of the old horse collar muffler.

The use of this style of installation requires two small tabs to be welded onto the curved portion of the rear frame so that you can get a fairly straight bracket to mount the sportser muffler using the existing holes. Then weld a short stopper directly onto the center stand where it stops against the frame. Because of the off set exhaust pipe you have no side clearance problems or interfence with bags etc.

I used 4 Harley clamps on the header to exhaust pipe & exhaust pipe to muffler . They are fairly expensive but work extremely well and look sharp. Bolted it all up and it is very rigid much like the original. I painted the headers and exhaust pipe with flat black header pipe. One nice thing is that you can take the exaust system off without removing tire or shocks to lift the tire up to clear. It removes from the bike easily.

This is the second set of Sporster mufflers that I've installed on Japanese bikes. The first was on a 81 Yamaha XJ650. It worked very well and I had no carb or running issues. Although I have't driven the wing yet as I'm waiting for the header paint to dry, I have started it, sounds a bit louder and much deeper tone.

This type of installation requires a little more work but I wanted to retain a cross-over pipe so that it would keep the exhaust balanced and retain the mid range power. Somebody who is mechanical, has a few tools and has access to a good welder would have no trouble in doing this install.
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Post #4 by sunnbobb » Mon Aug 25, 2008 11:46 pm

Can you post up some pics of the install?
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Post #5 by cycleman » Tue Aug 26, 2008 1:25 pm

sunnbobb wrote:Can you post up some pics of the install?


I have some pictures but no idea how to post them.
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Post #6 by Roady » Thu Aug 28, 2008 12:12 pm

I'd love to see your pictures.

Have a read through the instructions that are linked in my sig below.

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Post #7 by cycleman » Mon Jan 26, 2009 10:00 am

Just an update. It's been a long winter up here so I've been playing around with stuff on the bike.

I've picked up a pair of Road King mufflers and am going to try mounting them. Most likely will go without cross over pipe to see how it works. They are long & mount at the rear so will create some challenges.

I'll set the Sporster mufflers aside and see how it goes.
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Post #8 by cycleman » Mon Mar 16, 2009 11:51 pm

I posted this on another site & thought I should post it here as well.

I've run with both the Harley Sporsters & Road King mufflers on my 77. I have incoporated a cross over pipe into the exhaust. I never did try it without the cross over - here's why.

Recently I was doing some searching for exhaust info and ended up on a couple of Harley sites because they know more about Harleys than I do. Too make a long story short all of these later Harley factory mufflers run with a cross over pipe in the system. In the case of the Road Kings if you look down the rear portion you can see that both mufflers are different on the inside. The way it works with a Harley is the right exhaust exhausts most of the exhaust at idle and then as it speeds up more exhaust starts coming out of the left side. This is what gives them there unique sound. The right side muffler scavenges more exhaust. I know on my wing at idle you can feel & hear a totally different exhaust sound out of the right muffler verses the left. There is hardly any exhaust coming out of the left side. As the revs go up the exhausts flow about the same. The sound also changes as the revs go up from the Harley potato,potato, potato sound to more like the higher note of a superbike.

I have no idea how they work or flow without the cross over pipe. Just thought I'd add this little bit of research.
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Previous bikes: XJ650, GS550, XT500, 77 Goldwing, and a few others

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fishtails

Post #9 by rocknturtle » Mon Apr 06, 2009 12:05 pm

I just got a set of 30 inch fishtails. I will be putting them on this next week will send picx turtle
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Post #10 by cycleman » Tue Apr 07, 2009 11:47 am

Further update.

Still haven't been able to ride but have found that the Road Kings have too much scavenging action for my bike. Over the winter I'd rebuilt the carbs & fixed any carb issues along with doing the air jet & needle fix as outlined by Randakk.

What I found was that the Road Kings where fairly loud ( to my ears ) and the scavenging action out of the right side was amazing. It flowed about 3+ times as much exhaust as the left side. ( I have a cross over pipe installed ). They made the bike idle rough & you couldn't really get the bike to settle down. Hard to balance carbs etc. Accleration was fairly good but if you killed the throttle really quick it would stumble & almost die.

I put the Sporsters back on. ( I'd welded a 4 or 5 inch extension onto them to get the exit diameter down closer to stock & it balanced the exhaust system better. With out the extension you got the Harley potato, potato, potato sound and their was a difference in flow between the left & right side.) Immediately the bike settled down & both exhausts where fairly equal. This set up is much quieter. Throttle response was better & bike jumped to 4000 immediately with no stumble. On quick deccleration the bike didn't stumble as bad.

The Road Kings have a much bigger exhaust chamber & the exit size is about 1 5/8" and they are longer. The stock muffler's exit size is more like 1 1/4".

My conclusion is that the Road Kings because of their interior design & lack of back pressure/odd exhaust wave don't work that well on the wing. They are designed for a much bigger engine ie: 1200/1300 cc. The Sporsters are designed for an 883/1200 cc bike which closely relates to the early wings. Exhaust travels like a wave through the system and this is balanced to the motor's tourque & power band. With the addition of the extensions onto the Sporster this more closely resembles the overall length of the stock exhaust system. I have no dyno results but I would suggest that the Sporsters are a better fit for the Gl1000.
Currently own: Restored 1977 Goldwing

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Post #11 by Whiskerfish » Tue Apr 07, 2009 11:54 am

Only the newer kings are the large displacement correct??

Yes I had read somthing about the internal construction of the pipes being different to enhance pulse and scavenging. It makes sense that this could be counter productive for the 4 cylinder engine.
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Post #12 by cycleman » Tue Apr 07, 2009 12:03 pm

Whiskerfish wrote:Only the newer kings are the large displacement correct??


I'm not a Harley person but understand that the newer ones have more displacement. Usually their mufflers fit a fairly broad range of years. The ones I tried where off a 2007 year but fit multiple years.

Sombody more knowledgeable than me will provide us with the answer.
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Post #13 by rocknturtle » Wed Apr 08, 2009 7:50 am

please explain what the savaging is and what it means to the 1200 goldwing exactly. I want mine to perform well but I also want my fishtails. they are about 30 inches long and have no baffles. I was wanting to leave out the cross over pipe. would this be wise oldies ? thanks turtle
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Post #14 by cycleman » Wed Apr 08, 2009 11:11 am

Scavenging is just the muffler creating a vacum effect inside it that aids in pulling the exhaust out. You have to use your imagination because you can't see it but exhaust coming out of an engine works in pulses or waves as each cylinder fires. Engineers use this wave to design the exhaust system to get the most power etc out of the engine. You can sometimes see the engine's pulses on a set of carb sync gauges.

I would suggest that you try it. If the fishtails are just a basic motorcycle muffler with or without baffles they should work. You may or may not have lean issues. The crossover effects midrange power & smooths out the exhaust. Better to have one but not crucial if you don't. The bikes orginal system had a cross over pipe. If you find the engine wants to stumble or show lean symptoms I'd put the baffles back in and try it that way. You'll probably have to sync carbs when you are done.

The problem with the Road Kings is they are truly designed for a twin, with the interior design on the right & left side being totally different. I've read that they could actually run one of these bikes on the right side muffler alone. It carries about 80 % of the load. I had thought about getting another left side & trying it but its not worth me wasting another $100.00 to get a pair. As I understand it the lefts sides are designed more like a normal muffler and have less scavening effect.

The Sporsters are similarily designed but too a much lesser effect. There is a slight difference in exhaust note/volume at idle ( with cross over pipe ) but this dissappears once you are off idle. Carbs sync easily.
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Current project: Restoring 78 CB750F

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Post #15 by rocknturtle » Wed Apr 08, 2009 11:27 am

thanks for the information. "if you stop learning,you might as well die" I always enjoy learning from others experience. I will make a crossover but will plug it off at first. If I need then I can go back fairly easy and put one back in. thanks again. turtle tumb2
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