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Trained (ex)Professional, , 1953-2018 RIP,
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16,232 Posts
Jim,
Improving the scavenging will allow more fresh fuel/air into the combustion chamber in place of the residual exhaust gasses. Improved scavenging will result in more air flow during the overlap period and L-Jet will add fuel to compensate. These two things will result in more torque.
Sorry, forgot to reply to this.
@alfaparticle,
Please read this thread for an explanation.
 

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But Mad North-Northwest
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9,884 Posts
Let me dispel the rumor that you will fail a California Smog test with a header. I have have had no problem passing smog over the past eight years.
So they might pass you on the visual inspection, but that doesn't mean they should. It depends if the smog guy notices and wants to make a thing about it, but headers without an EO testing number are not smog compliant. It really depends who you're dealing with whether they pass you or not.

Now, if you put on the two-piece cast manifold from an S4 and modified the downtubes you'd almost certainly pass the visual provided you still have a CA cat converter: no smog guy is going to know the difference in the cast manifolds. But again, this would technically not be legal.
 

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11,677 Posts
So are you allowed to put mag wheels on a car, or any mods at all?

Surely what comes out of the exhaust is what matters, not the make and model of the extractors or muffler for example ... ?
Pete
 

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But Mad North-Northwest
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Cosmetic mods are no issue. But any engine or ECU stuff that potentially affects emissions is regulated. I don’t recall all the details but it’s pretty comprehensive. You’d think it would just be based on the results of the emissions test, but I guess the concern is people gaming the system.

For pre-1976 cars there are no restrictions. For more modern cars you can get aftermarket components that have been tested and certified. But no company bothers doing that for our old Alfas.

It can be a pain. At the end of the day, though, we have like 10x the cars on the road as we did in the 60s when the air quality was already crap. If you want to see what CA would be like without the smog laws just look at China.
 

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At the end of the day, though, we have like 10x the cars on the road as we did in the 60s when the air quality was already crap. If you want to see what CA would be like without the smog laws just look at China.
Good stuff and thank god we have made improvements! Pete
 

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Discussion Starter #46
Here is my final report on the headers issue. I just finished the install and took it out for a test drive. I hope my years of SCCA racing has given me a workable filter in the "actual vs. perceived" performance evaluation.
Without a dyno run I cannot make any comments about peak horsepower difference. Your body just wont feed back that info. Dyno sheets and lap charts are the best way.
But I KNOW I have improved the torque curve considerably. At lower RPM the car pulls out of corners like it never did. Running along in the lower gears at 3500 RPM and then kicking it open now gives one hell of a snap. That wasn't there before.

That being said, there may be more involved. This car lived in Colorado for a few years, mostly stored. The PO I bought it from here in California knew nothing of it's history. But it had the headers installed when he bought it. The springs and Koni Reds are not stock. So perhaps there has also been some cam/valve work done. I'll be looking for that in the future.
In the meantime, I couldn't be more happy with my decision to re-install them. I will deal with the smog issue in 2 years.
Thank you all for your input.
 

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Practical experience beats speculation and incorrect theory every time.
 

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Trained (ex)Professional, , 1953-2018 RIP,
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I am pleased that you are pleased with the result, Keeth!
And your results are believable because, believe it or not, you specifically state that there is no data to support the result. This makes the result an opinion and therefore, believable.
I posted my results on our Spider seeming to be slower at times in the identical manner; zero data to support the result which means my result was completely subjective as well.
IMO, others on this site would do well to learn from our examples.
Thanks for the update.
 

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670 Posts
Great thread, tons of good information. I have been on the fence for quite sometime with regards to the stock
4 into 2 cast iron system. This winter I will be searching for either the pre 74 cast iron or another more free flowing.

thanks all
 
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