Which headers will fit?

Discussion in 'High Performance Modifications' started by valleyguy, Mar 16, 2020.

  1. Sad Sack

    Sad Sack New Member

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    Make sure you get the best you can afford or find which ones have good clearance for #6 spark plug, that one is a bitch to get to with some headers. And if you have a certain heat range requirement for the plug, Accel doesn't have many options for shortys, they are mainly heat range 7 and my 383 requires a heat range 3 and the fit sucks with a normal length plug.
     
  2. BillyDean7173

    BillyDean7173 Veteran Member

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    I went with Stainless Works custom T304 stainless steel polished mid-length headers back in 2018 for my 73Z with TH400, PS, PB, and AC. The rest of my custom exhaust is 2.5" stainless steel with an H-bar and Thrush 304 polished stainless steel glasspacks. The exhaust system is the biggest mod for my car. The rest of the car is very stock.
     
  3. Lowend

    Lowend Administrator. .a car, a man, a maraca. Staff Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    OK - 3 headers I really like for applications like this

    1) The Doug Thorley or Doug's 375-Y (designed by the same guy) These are some of the only Tri-Y style headers on the market for our cars. The design is the best for torque and broad powerband (good info on this here . )

    2) Hedman 68608 - this is a mid length header that dumps the collector right at the firewall. It's a nice compromise for a street car that needs ground clearance. These are not the same quality as the Thorley or Sanderson headers, but just fine for a street car.

    3) Sanderson CC3-158 These are true shorty headers the max ground clearance. These are built like absolute tanks with the thickest flanges I've ever seen on a header. These have the least power potential, but also will be the least intrusive of the headers here. Note - Sanderson is also listing the CC17 as fitting our chassis now. These look very similar in design to the Hedman, but are almost certainly better quality. I don't have experience with these directly, but Sanderson is very good about fitment.

    A Note: Somewhere out there you will probably run across Flow-Tech Afterburner headers. They are cheap and look like a great option on paper. DON'T their build quality is awful.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2020 at 4:28 PM
  4. Dogstevens

    Dogstevens New Member

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    I've had Flow-Tech long tube headers on mine for 27 years and never had a problem. Whatever one you choose make sure they're either stainless or ceramic coated, painted ones will rust away. Mine are 16 guage, don't go thinner than that stay away from 18 guage they won't last long at all in a street driven car. Since the stock exhaust manifold flange is so much thicker than a header flange you will have to make a spacer to fill the gap where the a/c bracket bolts on. Long tube headers install fairly easily on an F-body with a small block. One side goes in from the top and the other goes in from the bottom if I remember correctly. Mine has a manual transmission with a Z-bar and there is no fitment issue whatsoever. Here's some gold for you: Take the paper header gaskets that come with the headers and throw them in the trash. Go to the parts store and buy STOCK exhaust manifold gaskets, the kind encased in metal. These won't leak and you can even reuse them if you take the headers off for something. The rear header bolts are almost impossible to get a wrench on, I solved this by using Allen head bolts on those. You can take them in and out easily with an Allen key. Mine are straight plug heads and there's no interference, I don't know about angle plug heads but I heard they can cause header interference with the plugs. Just went outside and took pics, I installed these in 1993 and here's how they look 27 years later. I bought them at a header 1.jpg header 2.jpg speed shop chain called Super Shops! Who remembers those? In the top pic you can see the beautiful custom fabricated spacer for the a/c bracket. Go long tube, trust me. You're engine will love you, your rear tires will hate you. Oh, and ground clearance was mentioned. I lowered mine 1.5" in the front and there's no problem at all...but...make sure your front supension is in good shape and most importantly the bump stops on the lower control arms. I'd go ahead an replace them just to be safe, the bump stops will hit the frame before the headers hit the ground. I think that's where people have ground clearance problems the bump stops are either wore slap the F out or missing entirely. I could sand blast the surface rust off of these Flow-Techs and have them ceramic coated and they'd still be kicking long after I'm dead. Primary size was also brought up, the Engine Masters series did a header bash dyno test. They wanted to see if denting up a header for clearance caused a loss of power. They bashed these headers up so badly it looked like air could hardly pass through...and it gained a couple of horsepower!! So don't worry so much about primary diameter, 1 5/8" O.D. is the most common for our cars and they work just fine. 3" collector.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2020 at 4:49 PM
  5. Lowend

    Lowend Administrator. .a car, a man, a maraca. Staff Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    Bracketry is a whole 'nother issue.
    To me (who doesn't care about originality), all of the factory bracketry is garbage.
    The Alan Grove stuff is superior in every way
    http://www.alangrovecomponents.com/Small_Block_Long_Pump.htm
    Their Mid-Mount Alternator and PS brackets make life so much better
     
  6. CMCE

    CMCE New Member

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    These are a nice alternative to long tube headers. They have the same footprint as an SBC log manifold, so you'll need a BBC 2.5" downtube from Pypes or Flowmaster to connect to your exhaust. You'll need to leave off the bottom back A/C bracket, but I've had this setup on my Chevelle for awhile and it's great. A/C, P/S, A/T or M/T linkage fit perfect with no interference anywhere. You will need shorty plugs though.

    https://classicmusclecarexhaust.com/p/thornton-sbc-headers
     

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