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A local motorcycle enthusiast's look at motorcycles, motorcycle gear and anything that goes into enjoying a ride — including where you can find the stuff in our area.

Exhaust – something so simple yet so important

Last week we talked about certain upgrades I made to my Fat Bob, specifically air intakes, Dynojet’s Power Vision and a touched a little bit on my exhaust of choice.  The exhaust that I chose for my bike was actually one that you, the reader, chose for me earlier this year in a poll – the Vance and Hines Big Radius 2 into 1.  

This exhaust combines really sharp looks with the significant performance boost brought on by most 2 into 1′s.  I looked initially at getting a 2 into 2 but the anticipated power gain of about 5 HP and 4 TQ over stock left me a little dry.  I was very pleasantly surprised to see the 2-1 Big Radius pulls in about 10-12 more HP and 10-12 more Torque over stock – just what I needed at the time, lol.  Retailing for $719.95 it’s actually a pretty fair price, considering that it is a full exhaust system and gives you access to V&H’s incredible Tech Support.

If you really need to go with a traditional 2-2 exhaust you can always choose Vance and HinesBig Shots Staggered“.  They look terrific as an old-school 2-2 but have this power chamber that gives them almost as much power as a 2-1.  My buddy actually report an 8HP gain and about 7 lbs of torque over stock.  I’m not sure what air cleaner he went with or the dyno he used but by the seat of the pants it felt about as good as my Fat Bob, with much more traditional sound.  At $624.95 these are even less expensive than the Big Radius 2-1, and a really strong alternative given the combo of looks and power.

I’m a big fan of Vance and Hines, primarily because of the fit,  finish and performance but also because of their pricing and availability.  Just about anyone in town can hook you up with their products, although I know for a fact that you can get them at Precision Bikeworks where you can also have the whole set-up dyno-tuned too.

Vance and Hines also make pipes for more than just Harleys, I would definitely check them out.

Ride safe,


Posted in: Motorcycles, My bikes, Reviews

4 Responses to Exhaust – something so simple yet so important

  1. SS3V says:

    Are these 1-and-done upgrades, so I can just get them and put them on and I’m done, or do they need other upgrades to get their full effect?

    • admin says:

      Either of these two exhausts are full systems, which means that they definitely require a fuel management system and an air intake as well. You could follow my lead and go with the full bore Dynojet Power Vision or if all you’re going to do is pipes and cleaner you could save some money and go with the extremely easy Vance and Hines Fuelpak. Some slip-on exhausts don’t require an air intake or fuel management but I would check with the MFR and your mechanic.

  2. Dan says:

    Interesting article, but who do you think makes a good exhaust for Sport Bikes?

    • admin says:

      Well, V&H makes some but there are a ton of different exhausts that match up well with different bikes. For Triumphs I like Remus, Arrow, Jardine. For Ducati and Moto Guzzi my favorite by far would be Termignoni. Japanese Sport Bikes have a ton of options, like Yoshimura, Two Brothers and more. I think you should look for a specific forum for your bike – I’m sure there will be a LONG thread on exhausts. Good luck!

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