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Old 03-05-2000, 09:20 AM   #1
Shik
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Member#: 132
Join Date: Jul 1999
Chapter/Region: Tri-State
Location: Central PA
Vehicle:
2006 GT Ltd 5spd sdn
2015 WRX 6spd CWP

Post RalliSpec Legacy Turbo downpipe review

Well, my Legacy is back and happier then ever. I'll just break this down a little.

Quality:
It is a work of art. I know it sounds dumb but I can't think of how else to explain it much better. I mean everything about it is first class from the bends to the welds, right down to the mounting bracket. I've only seen various other downpipes for the WRX in magazines and on the web, but judging by RalliSpec's downpipe, I can't imagine anything else being a whole hell of alot better. As Andy said in a past post, they even ovalized the beginning of the downpipe and original downpipe flange where it bolts on to the turbo so the exhaust from the wastegate can flow much easier into the main exhaust. Looking at the stock set up, it's a wonder any exhaust made it to the downpipe at all! The wastegate exhaust litterally had to make a very sharp and short right-hand 90 degree bend once it left the wastegate, then had to try and make another very sharp and short left-hand 90 degree bend into the main exhaust that was coming full force out of the turbo!!! Not to mention how the wategate exhausts must have been completely disturbing the main exhausts flow out of the turbo. A place where you would probably want it as smoother as possible.

Fit and Finnish:
It fits perfect. I've put about 200 miles on it so far and not a single rattle or bang or anything. It really is solid as a rock. Also, it is tucked up in nicely and despite the actual diameter of the pipe being a bit larger, overall it is the same basic diameter because of the factory heatshields so it's as close to a factory fit as one could get. It is also done in stainless so it looks fantastic and as funny as it sounds, the welds even look good!

Performance:
Keep in mind that I got the midpipe done at the same time as well as an Apex-i N1 muffler. Before then, the midpipe was stock with no muffler at all. However, going by others experiences with the WRX, the downpipe(specifically the beginning part of it) is where the power hides so I do not really think from the downpipe back attributes a whole lot to performance gains, although I could see the stock unit possibly hurting them.

Boost from 3500rpms comes on much stronger. Before, after 4500rpm, although the rpm's were still rising, power did not feel like it increased with higher RPMs. Now it feels the opposite. The more RPMs, the more power. It does not run out of steam. I usually shift around 5500-6000 when I'm on it, and in the first three gears it will stick you in the seat right up till you shift. A VERY nice feeling.

Max boost probably rose maybe .5psi or so but the biggest difference was in first gear. With the stock pipe in first gear, no matter how hard you got on it or how long you waited to shift, it would never go above 6.5-7psi. Now it swings right to 8.5psi with no problems so needless to say, first gear is MUCH more fun. The max boost stays practically solid at 10psi in the higher gears.

Another big surpise was at cruising speeds. Say at around 65mph or so, hit the gas and the car just goes. Boost comes on much faster and the car accelerates alot quicker. To get to 90mph from 60mph is no problem at all. And even then, the car still doesn't feel like it's out of breath where before it did.

Surprisingly, I don't feel like the low end of the RPM range suffered much. At least not enough to be considered troublesome. Especially since I went from almost an entirely stock set-up to a straight-through 3" system.

Sound:
This one is hard to describe because their is a high flow cat in the mid-pipe. I wanted the mid-pipe done in aluminum to save a few bucks and RalliSpec had no problem with this but they only work with stainless so they contracted the midpipe out to a local shop that works with aluminum. But, the shop wouldn't touch it unless it had a cat. So right now there is a 3" in/3" out high flow cat on it which I would almost bet the farm is softening up the tone quite a bit. Even still, currently it is as loud, if not a bit louder, then the stock set-up with no muffler at all. The sound of the Apex N1 is the best I've ever heard on any car. But as it is right now, there are no cracks or pops between shifts or on downshifts as I've heard on a few Subes with N1s as well( a sound that I absolutely love). I'm going to be taking the cat off this week just for the sake of seeing if there is much of a difference. If not, I'll put the cat back on. Like I said, it is still loud at WOT, and by no means does it sound "tinny". Very Deep sounding that turns into a crackle when nearing the shift point. It sounds closer to the Group A cars then it did with no muffler which I didn't think would be the case. Still, I'm intrested to see if not having the cat will make a difference.

Price:
This is really tough since I had the entire exhaust done along with the price of an N1($200+) and various other services( tranny and diff fluid changed with the correct synthetics, turbo-to-intercooler pipe connector made, and a few other little things as well). Plus the cost of a cat which easily added over $100 dollars or more to the total and I paid around $840 for everthing including tax so I am quite pleased. You'll have to talk to RalliSpec to see how much a downpipe alone would be as I would think they have a pretty good idea what's involved both time and price wise after doing mine.

Overall, I am more then pleased with the outcome. I love everything about it. Seeing how much difference the downpipe made at only around 9psi, I am really intrest in turning up the boost just a bit more It makes even just a simple jaunt to the grocery store more enjoyable.

I also have to say thanks to RalliSpec for taking on the project. In a time when all the Impreza guys are beating down their door for Impreza products, they put that stuff on hold, if only for a few hours overall, and did the Legacy turbo dowpipe. Something that they are not going to sell a ton of or make any wild amount of money off of. So for that I say thanks.

BTW, I have two great pictures that RalliSpec e-mailed me while they were doing the downpipe. One of the whole downpipe, and the other of the ovalized inlet. I have no idea how to post a picture so if anyone that does know how( JC?) wouldn't mind, I'll e-mail you the pics and you could post them here. I'll get some pics of it acutally on the car and of the rest of the exhaust a bit later on.

Sorry for the novel-length post guys( and gal ).
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Old 03-05-2000, 10:43 AM   #2
Ben
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Join Date: Oct 1999
Chapter/Region: E. Canada
Location: Markham, Ont , Canada
Vehicle:
2002 WRX wagon
Silver

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Its great Shik!!!
Could you ask Rallyspec. that how much of those downpipe (just the downpipe) because I don't think I could take out the cat from my car because I don't want the cop catch me !!
I would like to know hows it go with all other parts are stocks! because I doesn't wants to change the entire exhust except the downpipe!!!
Thanks and conget!!
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Old 03-05-2000, 10:57 AM   #3
JC
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Triumph Street Triple R

Smile


I had to make sure it worked first, of course.
When you go to post click the part that say UBB code is on, then scroll down and copy the part with the code.

[This message has been edited by JC (edited March 05, 2000).]
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Old 03-05-2000, 11:23 AM   #4
Shik
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Member#: 132
Join Date: Jul 1999
Chapter/Region: Tri-State
Location: Central PA
Vehicle:
2006 GT Ltd 5spd sdn
2015 WRX 6spd CWP

Post

Ben, check out RalliSpec's site at www.rallspec.com and send them an e-mail with your questions. I'm sure they would be able to answer them a bit better.

As far as the downpipe with stock mid-pipe and muffler, I'm sure you will still be able to get performace gains because as I said, I think the power is in the downpipe. But, I'm guessing a better flowing exhaust from the downpipe back will be able to take better advantage of the better flow of the downpipe itself. However, maybe at stock or near stock boost levels, the gains may not be huge.

Also, their downpipe eliminates the main cat( which resides in the stock downpipe). That is why I had to get one put in the mid-pipe. The STi versions of the WRX have the cat in the mid-pipe only as well where as the stock WRXs also have one in the downpipe. So STi obviously felt there was some advantage to this as well. Hope this helps.
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Old 03-06-2000, 06:19 AM   #5
Miller3339
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Location: Everett, Wa. Snohomish CO.
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Rallspec, how much just for the Down pipe??

Miller
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Old 03-06-2000, 02:09 PM   #6
RalliSpec
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Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: Hainesport, NJ, USA
Vehicle:
98 Prodrive WRC

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The work we did on Shik's car was a one-off custom piece. The reasoning behind this decision was simple, we just don't see much of a market for a mass produced Legacy turbo downpipe at this time. Yes, we've received e-mail from many turbo owners that were curious about such a product but we really don't think we could sell any more than 5 or 6 of them... regardless of cost. Materials and labor costs on such a small quantity would make a $299 downpipe (like a DSM) an impossibility. However, we do take on custom work from time to time and would gladly reproduce the "Shik" downpipe for a loyal shop customer.
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Old 03-06-2000, 02:42 PM   #7
Miller3339
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ahh...that would be great but....I'd have to Drive from Washington State to NJ.....
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