Help! (my exhaust mods are not going as planned :( )

Discussion in 'SN95 V6 Mustang Tech' started by shira_uma, Feb 1, 2006.

  1. So I finally decided on a GT takeoff exhaust, and switching the mufflers out to Flowmaster Delta 40s. Great.

    Dropped the car off tonight at my muffler shop (Midas, but one of the guys there is really very good and comes highly recommended), and no sooner do I get home, than I get a call from the guy checking my car and all the parts I brought him, telling me that there are going to be problems.

    So I go back out, and we stand under the car and he's telling me that the left side front pipe is not going to reach, so flanging isn't going to do anything, that he's going to need to essentially trash all of the GT exhaust other than the rear pipes and fabricate his own, and somehow from what I've read on these boards, that doesn't sound right.

    Plus, he said it's going to take his guy between 4 and 6 hours to do the job, including fabricating the new pipes, at a cost of $85 an hour? Whoa.

    In trying to help, and save me some time and money, he offered me an H-pipe that they happened to have in the shop, something taken off some other Stang; said he'd check it and make sure it would bolt up, would make sure it will fit... but in all the reading and research I've done, I don't think I want to go with an H-pipe.

    And then besides that, the dealer I bought my Flowmasters off sent me the wrong intake mufflers; so as it stands right now, my car is still on the lift and I have to decide if I want them to just install the GT exhaust and replace the mufflers later, or if I just want to take all my toys and go home for now. And if I leave the car, I have to decide about the H-pipe. I want my Flowmasters, dammit, but I'm torn right now what to do - and I'm not real happy with what they say this is going to entail. Maybe I'm wrong in being a little miffed? I don't know.

    Guys, help. I did so much research for this, and nowhere did I get the impression that this was such a complex job that this shop shouldn't know how to deal with replacing the exhaust on my V-6. Is there something wrong here, or does this sound right to you all?


  2. They are trying to take advantage of you!

    You do need a midpipe or they need to cut your "y" pipe and make the GT exhaust work with that.

    I would say go get your car and your goodies and tell him that you will be back after some more research!

    Then come back ehre post some pics of the goodies and we will help you not get taken.

    I am a MAC dealer and for 85x6 hrs i can get you an hpipe and catback for that price.

    That is ridicoulous! They are trying to take advantage fo you!
  3. Usually it is easier to just use the tailpipes since you aren't using the Ford mufflers.

    Then they'll just cut off the Y-pipe, and fabricate midpipes.

    It is possible to re-use the Ford midpipes, but you would still have to fabricate some pipes and flanges coming from the cats. This is a good idea if you want to switch to another GT cat-back later on, but if you plan on keeping this system it's just another place for leaks to occur. This is also more expensive than fabbing entire, solid midpipes.

    What the guy's telling you is right, but either way Midas is a ripoff.
  4. Here's a pic of my system:

    The entire midpipe was fabricated with a crossover pipe. Then I have Mac Flowpaths and GT tailpipes. It was cheaper for me to buy a GT take-off system, trash the mufflers and midpipes, and have the midpipe fabbed instead of fabricating the whole system.
    IMO, the only reason to retain the entire GT system is if you're using the Ford mufflers.
  5. [QUOTE='66 coupe]What the guy's telling you is right, but either way Midas is a ripoff.[/QUOTE]

    The part that gets me is that I can't beleive it will take "4 to 6 hours." I know the rate is high, but the guy I wanted to do the job is a personal friend of a friend and known to do excellent bending and welding work, so that's why I took it there. But I guess in my mind, I'm thinking that if the guy is so good, why does he think this is going to take him so damn long?

    I really hate to think that they're planning on charging me for more hours than the job iwll really entail because I brought my own exhaust, rather than buying a complete Flowmaster exhaust from them, but they could not get me what I wanted, which was 2.25" pipes all the way back, so that's why I provided my own stuff. They kept trying to tell me that upping to 2.5" pipes would not make a difference with the car, but from everything I've read, I decided not to chance losing any low-end torque by sticking with the 2.25" original pipes off the GT.

  6. [QUOTE='66 coupe]IMO, the only reason to retain the entire GT system is if you're using the Ford mufflers.[/QUOTE]

    OK, I guess this is what he's telling me he needs to do. I just needed to know that this was, indeed, correct. I mean, it sounded like it made sense when we were looking at the car talking about it, but something still isn't sitting right with me about it. It must be that damn $85 an hour, lmao!

    Nice pic, btw. Looks like a nice, tidy job. How much did the labor cost on that (or did you do it yourself?), and how long did it take?

  7. I paid $310 for all my labor and parts. I had the work done at a small little exhaust shop that fabricated the entire system on my '66 the year before for $300.

    Even at 4 hours, your guy is running way too high for labor alone($340).
  8. I think he's trying to take advantage of you because your a women. You should read up on here and get your answers, and then go there, get your stuff and tell him to cram some mufflers up his :eek:! Oh, and I think that you should stay away from well known places like Mitas and places like that. Good Luck!
  9. Yea. I've never heard anything good about Midas.

    I usually go to small time mechanics that look like their struggling. Usually, if they're ripping people off and making lots of money, they're not going to be working out of a storage bay or something. Of course, there's always exceptions and there's no substitute for having references and word of mouth.
  10. I think everyone assumes they're trying to take advantage because I'm a woman, but I disagree.

    I know the guys at this shop. When I mentioned being referred to the one mechanic there, it's because he was my ex'es best work mate while HE worked there. He and I have BOTH talked to him about the car.

    If they're trying to take advantage, I'd more say it's for the reason I already stated - that I decided on bringing them all my own parts, and they could not sell me a retail exhaust kit, which was too much money as it is. $465 for a Flowmaster kit for a V6, when I know I can get them on eBay for $299.00.

    They know I'm not stupid, and they know that if I don't know something, that I will find out before I do anything. Therefore, I think I'm going to offer them a nice three hours to do the job (which I feel is being generous, but at least it wont be like a slap in the face), and if they want the work, they'll accept it, since it seems like that's MORE than enough time for them to do this... and if they wont accept it, then I will find another shop that can do this, and for a more reasonable fee. Of course I want a good job, but it's not like this is brain surgery or anything. I just wanted to come here before I made any decisions to make sure what I was being told about how this needed to be done was correct. I see now that there are, indeed, two ways to do this.

    I'll let you know what happens.

  11. I got a magnaflow cat-back system. I had my muffler guy cut off my Y-pipe right behind the cats, and he fabricated everything in between. Cost was around $500, but it was only like $200 total for the fabrication and installation. $300 for the magnaflow piece.

    Go there and see what you get. I'd take it to a small shop rather than a corporate shop. You're paying alot for the name on the door when you do that. ;)

    I've got to take my car back to the muffler shop so my tail pipes can be rebent to fit into the grooves in my new bumper. I wonder how much I'm going to get charged for that.
  12. Yeah, I think these guys get one chance to meet me in the middle, and if not, I take my stuff and find another shop.

    Love your sig. I think mine's becoming a money-pit as well, but it's fun! I've never had a car worth customizing before, so this is great. :D

  13. I was one of the ones who suggested going with a GT takeoff. Like you I took all of my own parts from the catback to a muffler shop. They cut the stock Y-pipe off behind the cats and and welded on two straight sections of pipe to mate up to the catback, and installed the catback, in about an hour. I did install the muffler and exhaust tip hangers along with a GT takeoff bumper cover myself prior to taking it in. Total labor cost: $100, plus $20 that I tipped the installer. If Midas penalizes a customer for bringing in their own parts go elsewhere whether you're friends with their installer or not.
  14. This is what I wanted. I even printed out the images and directions off that website you gave me the link to. HOW HARD could it be? It looked very straight forward.

    But now this is going from bad to worse. I should never have let them keep my car to "look at it". They kept it, and I was to decide if I wanted to install the GT system the way it is, with the idea of doing the FlowMasters later (I don't remember if I already mentioned this, but to add to this mess, we opened the muffler boxes and the dealer I bought from sent me the wrong ones), or wait, take everything home, and just do the full install when the correct mufflers arrived. PRICE was still an issue, however, and I spent the morning calling around talking to other shops.

    So they're not calling me back, and not calling me back, and finally I call them at noon. The first thing I get told is "You know, I've really been thinking about your setup, and I know you're not going to be happy with Delta 40 Flowmasters, because there is an unbearable drone around 3k, so I really think you should just do a stock GT install first and see how you like it."

    So then we started talking price on that, and they wanted to charge me $400. plus tax, and at that point I said "I think what I'd like to do is take the car home and do a little comparison shopping." I get told to hold on, and then when the service writer comes back I get told "Well look... we have less than an hour to go to finish your car, so I don't know how to handle this now."

    They installed the GT stock system without my permission. *wants to murder people right now* AND... after talking with the tech (yes, the guy who is supposedly a friend), he tells me that "this is how I wouhd have done it, regardless," that he would have installed the stock system first, then cut the mufflers off and put in the flowmasters. Despite the fact that the service manager told me that they would just fab new pipes straight from the cats to the Flows, and install it that way. Regardless of which way is right, I got two different stories.

    And do you want to hear the kicker? They installed an H-pipe. Without asking me. And after me telling the service writer initially that I did not want one. The tech is the one who told me this, and when I told him "I DO NOT WANT AN H PIPE!", he was speechless, and really had no clue what to say. He says he has spent his entire day until now, 1 pm, on my car, and now he has to go back and do it all over again, because I told him to remove the H-pipe.

    I am SO angry right now, I am livid. I feel like my car has been raped, as stupid as that sounds. Or maybe it's just my pride in my car, but either way, they had no permission to start any work on the car. And here I am stuck in that terrible area between "friends and enemies", where "I" feel like an ass, because I know the guy, even though they are the ones that screwed this whole thing up. And with something that I didn't want. And now doubting whether I really would be displeased with the Flows, or if they were just telling me that to try to sell me on the GT install, since essentially it had already been done.

    I'm dreading picking up the car, because in my annoyedness I think I agreed to pay three hours labor for this tragedy, but the more I think about it, I don't think I want to pay anything for this.

  15. That's definately more time than it should take, IF they know what they're doing.
    The guys that did my '66 fabricated a whole system from scratch and mounted it in 4 hours. They had my '01 done in like 1.5-2 hours.
    If they're charging you by the hour, make sure they don't walk away from the car to do something else. Usually the bigger places pull this crap, which is why it's good to go to someone with only 1 lift.
  16. [QUOTE='66 coupe]Usually the bigger places pull this crap, which is why it's good to go to someone with only 1 lift.[/QUOTE]

    I'm just flabbergasted right now. I was actually calling around to find a smaller place to bring it to, friends or no, but look up thread to see what happened >_<. So much for "knowing someone," if they're still going to pull the same BS. And still the guy maintains that he has spent over 4 solid hours on the car, that was before having to go back and do it again. Un-effing-believable. They insist that there is no way anyone could be doing this job faster, and that "I can't believe everything I read on the internet." Wow, forget about my basic PM and tires that I was going to go to them for.

  17. It won't hurt anything to have an H-pipe on there, other than the cost. When I did this mod I stayed at the shop and BS'd with the guy doing the work, and even then it only took about an hour.

    BTW most service writers require the customer's signature on their estimate form before doing any actual work on the vehicle. If this was not done they have blatantly done their thing without permission.
  18. Wow, that didn't show up before my last post.

    Like Give Me TP said, usually if they want to do work without contacting you, they have you sign a waiver. I never sign these and just tell them to call me, or I stay and watch the work. If they didn't do this, you can easily get out of paying, but if you signed something saying they could do work w/o consulting you, they may have you, although there may be a loophole(like if you were JUST getting an estimate).

    Even if you get out of paying, this should be a sign to stay as far away from Midas as possible.
  19. I signed nothing. And I left the car there because, again, I knew these guys, and trusted them. My mistake, apparently.

    I feel so very awkward right now. This has turned into a fiasco. Will update later when I get home, after I look at the botch job under my car and have it out with them.
  20. They have probably done good quality work, but that doesn't eliminate the unpleasant task ahead of having to deal with those clowns.