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SOUND OFF. Mufflers

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    SOUND OFF. Mufflers

    I have a 1986 Buick Century TType. I want to get a more aggressive sound from it but not crazy, kinda like an 80s V6 camaro or Cavalier Z24. ANyone ever do a muffler swap using one of those?

    It actually can come down to the type of engine you have.

    The 2.8 or 3.1 MPFI does much better with the Delta 60 Series.

    The 3.3 or 3.8, in my opinion, never sounds good without a complete custom exhaust, and even thou, the note is not that great.
    Brian - Carpe Diem

    I dont have to love my president, or any god, to love my country!!
    More people have died in the name of "God" than in all wars combined thruout history
    01 Pontiac Aztek GT AWD 127k - 04 GMC Envoy SLT XUV 193k


      Beastcub, the cylinder bank angle is different between the Chevrolet V6 (2.8/3.1) and the Buick V6 (3.3/3.8). The Chevrolet V6 has a 60 degree bank angle and the Buick's is 90 degrees. This has a direct impact on intake and exhaust port shape along with valve sizes and engine bore, all working together to dictate the engine note. If you want your Buick 3.8 to sound like a Chevrolet V6, swap in the Chevrolet V6.

      I personally always liked the Buick 90 degree V6 engine note, as they also received split pin crankshafts (at least the 3300 did). This means each cylinder fired at an even 120 degrees of crankshaft rotation, resulting in a very smooth idle. When they're uncorked, particularly at idle, they burble at a lower note than the Chevrolet V6, sounding almost like an Oldsmobile V8.

      Depending on your state regulations, you may not have to have a catalytic converter, or it may have already been removed by a previous owner. Due to the way the exhaust system is routed on these transversely mounted engines, the front cylinder head's exhaust has to pass through part of the rear cylinder head's exhaust manifold before going into the downpipe and to the muffler. This can lead to a drone/imbalance exhaust pulse when cruising. I recommend a light resonator to be installed in place of the catalytic converter (if it is not required or is missing). If the catalytic converter is still present, leave it in place as it will help dampen this imbalance and prevent the drone.

      From here, I suggest simply swapping out your rear muffler for an aftermarket brand. Borla, Magnaflow, and Spintech are favorites of mine. The chamber style mufflers like Cherry Bomb or Flowmaster seem to sound "tinny" at idle and excel at droning inside the car at cruising speeds, which I find intolerable. Of course, that is my personal opinion, so you may have a different perspective. I suggest going to a carshow and talking to owners and seeing what brands of mufflers they run, then listening to their ride. Don't think too hard about it, have fun!
      What is this & what does pulling it out do?


        I have the 60 degree engines. Around 20 years ago I bought a Holley Flowtech 304 muffler. Sounded great. Then I found 2 more on eBay so I snagged them. Never seen them for sale since. 304 stainless so I’m still running them on my cars. Nice throaty sound but not loud and rumbling like the Magnaflow glasspack I tried before that.

        Anyway the place I bought the first one from said the sound was similar to a Dynomax Super Turbo.
        1989 Celebrity CL 4 door, 3.1 MPFI, 4 speed auto, summer daily driver
        1989 Cutlass Cruiser wagon, 3.1 MPFI, 4 speed auto, special summer ride
        1996 Cherokee XJ 4 door, 4.0, 5 speed, winter daily driver & towing vehicle
        1991 Tracker 2 door, 1.6, 5 speed, needs work
        Previously several Celebritys, 6000s, & 2 U-vans