What are my options for replacing the stock exhaust system?

There are 7 companies that I know of that make pipes for the RT:

[If you know of others or have experience with any of these exhaust systems   please let me know!]

Steve Burford <burf@iquest.net > wanted a new exhaust and his pals Steve  and Archey  both suggested the D&D exhaust system. "…with the "euro spec" silencer on it if I wanted the bike to sound like a motorcycle. Steve noted that his impression of the muffler was from what he had put on his twin. We both liked the sound of an older twin with a two into one exhaust system on it, and this D&D was similar sounding. OK, I’m hooked. Archey got one of the aluminum units for us out of the D&D shop in Texas in short order. Archey mentioned he had heard of some problems with their carbon fiber units failing at the rivets and suggested we not get that model, thus the reason for the aluminum (plus I think the aluminum looks neat). "

"Installation was difficult only in the removal of the very heavy old system. While the bike only had 1500 miles on it at that time, the old system had a number of supports and do dads that had to be removed before it could be cleared from the bike. The most important thing to remove (and on the RT’s, it is a real chore ‘cause you have to virtually strip the bike to get to it) is the oxygen sensor. The cabling for the sensor runs up the right side, behind the injector. I wound up removing all the wire ties from the clips holding the lead wire in order to get the cable long enough to remove the sensor. There is no swivel on the sensor, so you have to rotate the whole sensor and cable (or the exhaust system that would be almost impossible) to unscrew the unit. This has to be repeated when the new header pipe is installed. The new unit has a new header pipe and a separate muffler. The header extension is about 3 feet long and less than 5 pounds vs. the considerably longer and heavier one piece stock unit. The muffler is equally light weight and has a style that goes with the overall style of the motorcycle. "

"Bolt up is a piece of cake, although there are no written instructions on what goes where with the new exhaust system. Rough align all the "stuff" and get it all on before you go back and tighten. I gotta tell you, sound, and feeling is GREAT!!!!! The sound is a bit louder than what I was expecting, but not window rattling, squid rider loud. Just a deeper and more authoritative sound. Steve H. noted that his bike sounded good at speed, and would let those around you know when you tickled the throttle a bit. Yet at a smooth speed, the sound is just a slight, healthy tone."

"Biggest difference I have noticed so far is in the midrange of the rpm’s, where I used to get some of the now big twins famous stumbling. While the stumbling it still there slightly, most of it is gone (helped also by plug changes, noted below). I guess lowering the back pressure the engine was fighting has reduced the amount of work the engine has to do, so the engine is not working as hard and the power delivery is smoother. At a price of around $700, this is not an inexpensive change, but it was well worth it for me. I guess the silencer is rigged for several different models and is supposed to exit on the right side of a number of these models, but this pipe exits on the left side, so the D&D logo is pop riveted to the INSIDE of the muffler. Kinda fits the not totally conforming mode I seem to be in most of the time."

Troy Torrison <ttorrison@mnh.com> Says that he "met a guy who had a CC Spytech Exhaust on his R1100RS and I asked him about it. He got it from a BMW specialist in Northern California and was very happy with it. Claimed it was holding up well after much use and abuse (he complained of often hitting the rev limiter--something I've almost never done) and the muffler looked nice (though not as clean a design as the more expensive Sta-in-tune) except for the rather awkward empty space that exists where the catalytic converter once was. Since the unit was lighter the guy claimed better performance but hadn't dyno-ed the thing. Anyway, the bike sounded fantastic to my ears. It sounded about as loud as a stock Ducati (without the Desmo rattle of course) but with that unique BMW boxer note. It's music if you ask me. And it's why I want a new muffler.. .but I think I'm going to go with Sta-in-tune regardless. Looks better."

My dad put a StainTune on his '98 RT, and turned out to be way too loud for his comfort on the highway, and backfired all the time when decelerating. After some investigation, we found out that StainTune makes two different pipes for the R1100 series. One has a "sport" baffle and the other a "touring" baffle. Turns out that Steve had the sport baffle. The sport baffle did create a noticeable increase in Horsepower, but according to the guy we spoke with from StainTune, the tour baffle does not enhance performance.

As of September 2000, CBT Imports reports that the touring version of the StainTune has been discontinued for the sport version with removable baffles. Its your choice to be loud or quiet(er) - the baffles come in and out very easily.

James Meyers <bently19@earthlink.net> Went with a system is built by Two Brothers Racing. "The system I have has an aluminum canister with a thin walled stainless steel connector pipe. It was an absolute piece of cake to install an leaves plenty of room for the stock luggage. I didn't weigh the system, but the whole thing can't weigh more than ten pounds. There are no baffles anywhere in the system. The muffler is totally straight through. There is a stainless steel vortex tube running the full length of the muffler. Surrounding the tube is stainless steel wool, this being surrounded by fiberglass pads. A kit is available from Two Brothers for rebuilding the interior of the muffler, should the fiberglass need replacing. The stock system (including the catalytic converter) is removed totally at the junction of the stock pipe and the header system connected to the engine. The Two Brothers thin wall stainless connector pipe is then connected to this junction with a clamp supplied with the kit. There is a bung for the oxygen sensor in this connector pipe which accepts the stock sensor. There is no need for re-chipping the fuel injection with this system."

"The muffler itself a slip-on, retained by two springs and a large clamp surrounding the muffler. This clamp connects to a very short aluminum bar bracket with a 8mm bolt. The other end of this bracket connects to the original 10mm muffler mounting bolt located in the stock position. The slip-on area is coated lightly with high heat silicon to prevent metal to metal contact at this joint. The original mounting area in the center stand area, for the catalytic converter is not used. I am not positive on this, but I think the change has resulted in an 18 pound loss of weight."

"The bike has a very deep sound that can now be heard. The bonus is that the bike performs much better, especially at the point where the torque really kicks in, about 4300rpm. I rode the bike to Sturgess this year and it performed without a glitch. You must maintain a very clean air filter as the engine is pumping quite a bit more air. Another plus is the cost. The system, with alum. canister cost 419.98, considerably less than many other systems. The quality of the construction is A+.

G. Mayes <gmayes@sprintmail.com> opted for the Laser Exhaust System with Chip after doing considerable research on the various exhaust systems. "After going through the list of available systems, it came down to Remus and Laser. Staintune, D&D, Two Brothers  etc... could not substantiate their claims or had no claims to substantiate.  The Remus system cost the same as the Laser and could / would not guarantee any horsepower or torque gain. So I opted for the Laser, and got it within 5 days of ordering. I was very satisfied with the quality and the looks."

"Installing the exhaust was simple; one advantage of the Laser is the weight - about 11 pounds. The old system came off easy - weighed a whopping 31 pounds. I did not to make any changes to the fairing, frame or anything, it fit perfect. Installing the chip was a little more time consuming and takes more mechanical knowledge and skill. You have to remove the gas tank to get to the Motronic box and install the new chip and re-seal the box with a good Silicone Sealant. To do the whole job, a person with good mechanical skills should be able to do the job in a half-day."

There has been a lot of discussion about buying the Laser exhaust and not the chip or vice versa. If you get the chip only, and do not change the exhaust, you will cause permanent damage to the Catalytic Converter on your bike and possibly damage the valves on your RT. If you get the exhaust only, you also will need to purchase a BMW Potentiometer and other parts - see the Surging FAQ for more info on this. There is no bung for the Air (lamda) sensor on the Laser or the Remus systems. Also, I should note that opening the Motronic Box and installing the chip will void your warrantee.

G. Mayes had his motorcycle dyno-tested prior to changing the exhaust and noted a measurable improvement in performance with the Laser system: "The stock rear wheel HP was 76.5hp @ 7500rpm. This is approximately 15% of BMW's stated 90hp at crankshaft. BMW says this difference is about the correct percentage  of gear and differential loss that should be expected. After the Laser system was installed, I had it dyno'd again at the same place on the same machine, and it showed 84.4hp at 8000rpm for about a 10% gain. The torque did not exceed 70 lb/ft, but was a very smooth curve/ Also the Horsepower curve was very linear, with no dips or flat spots as in the stock dyno-test."

"Noise was a big concern for me as well, but I am pleased with the sound. Its definitely louder, but not by much. Its a lot quieter than a stock Harley, which doesn't say very much! I ride with a guy that has a Honda VTR 1000 and has punched out baffles, and it sounds a lot like his bike. I don't think anyone will be disappointed in the sound or think its too loud.