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I think I castrated my Shelby….and I’m not happy about it

GJarrett

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After reading this entire thread I am still trying to wrap my head around the idea of modifying the GT350 exhaust. One of the most glorious sounds I have ever heard orchestrating from a street legal automobile. If I owned one, the absolute last thing I would think about altering is its song.
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dsiggi

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I realize that what I’m about to say will be the digital equivalent of finding a turd in the punch bowl, and I apologize in advance. But reading so many failed mod posts it increasingly occurs to me that one’s best bet by far may be to just buy the basic car that best suits you to start with and don’t try to outsmart the engineers that designed it. Maybe only the failed science experiments get posted, I don’t know. Anyway, it’s just a casual observation and I’m not trying to state a fact. Plus, I’m flaky and wishy-washy as heck and next week I may have a GMC 6~71 poking through the hood of one of my cars. There’s that.

One more thing, kinda related. Given the unbelievably beautiful sound that comes from a stock GT or Mach 1 running in track mode, I can only imagine how good a GT350 must sound live and in person. The videos alone border on qualifying as pure porn. I personally couldn’t imagine trying to improve it but clearly that’s just me.
All comes down to if you like working on your stuff or driving it better , i prefer to drive mine. All cars have deficiencies...
 

mavisky

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After reading this entire thread I am still trying to wrap my head around the idea of modifying the GT350 exhaust. One of the most glorious sounds I have ever heard orchestrating from a street legal automobile. If I owned one, the absolute last thing I would think about altering is its song.
If you can't hear the sounds getting progressively better over these various options, then I don't know what to tell you. To me the ARH setup is the best all around setup. Now it does set you back almost $5,000 last I checked for this setup, and I haven't been able to convince myself that the improvement in sound is something I'm ready to spend.

 

GJarrett

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Yeah that ARH does sound sweet.
 

Wildwildwest

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If you can't hear the sounds getting progressively better over these various options, then I don't know what to tell you. To me the ARH setup is the best all around setup. Now it does set you back almost $5,000 last I checked for this setup, and I haven't been able to convince myself that the improvement in sound is something I'm ready to spend.

OEM resonators sound right (sound character and volume), Resonator delete sounds similar but “raw” (sound character is sharper and more noticeable crackle…volume is significantly louder). Between these 2, OEM resonators provides best range from quiet to awesome sound. From the video of the ARH full system overall that has the best sound through out rev ranges (character and volume), though no ability for quiet option (Closed valves)?…and most expensive. if I didn’t care about having a quiet option and money was no concern, I’d go ARH. If versatility is key and best character open valve sound (my opinion), I’d leave it OEM. If I liked the “raw“ sounds (closed and open valves) better than resonated, id do an xpipe. I’ve had LTH xpipe sitting on my shelf for over 1.5 years. When I read these articles and listen to videos, it makes me want to install the x pipe (more for something new/different), but when I drive the car OEM with valves opened, Im reminded it sounds better/quality with resonators (to me).…if any of this helps.
 

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mavisky

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OEM resonators sound right (sound character and volume), Resonator delete sounds similar but “raw” (sound character is sharper and more noticeable crackle…volume is significantly louder). Between these 2, OEM resonators provides best range from quiet to awesome sound. From the video of the ARH full system overall that has the best sound through out rev ranges (character and volume), though no ability for quiet option (Closed valves)?…and most expensive. if I didn’t care about having a quiet option and money was no concern, I’d go ARH. If versatility is key and best character open valve sound (my opinion), I’d leave it OEM. If I liked the “raw“ sounds (closed and open valves) better than resonated, id do an xpipe. I’ve had LTH xpipe sitting on my shelf for over 1.5 years. When I read these articles and listen to videos, it makes me want to install the x pipe (more for something new/different), but when I drive the car OEM with valves opened, Im reminded it sounds better/quality with resonators (to me).…if any of this helps.
Agreed that it's a shame the ARH doesn't have valves as that option would be the ultimate.

I settled for the resonator delete along with the AWE controller to keep the valves open in 6th when I want or to close them in any gear and at any throttle input if that's needed as well.
 

rolfe.oliver

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After reading this entire thread I am still trying to wrap my head around the idea of modifying the GT350 exhaust. One of the most glorious sounds I have ever heard orchestrating from a street legal automobile. If I owned one, the absolute last thing I would think about altering is its song.
From my perspective, the GT350 sounds great. The previous owner of my car put a very cheap resonator delete x-pipe on it with booger welds, so I knew that had to go.

My car will be boosted, so I bit the bullet and got ARH headers without cats, since those were leaving anyways. Those headers, plus ARH's resonators should give me a great sound quality compared to the full ARH system.
 

rolfe.oliver

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Agreed that it's a shame the ARH doesn't have valves as that option would be the ultimate.

I settled for the resonator delete along with the AWE controller to keep the valves open in 6th when I want or to close them in any gear and at any throttle input if that's needed as well.
I was not willing to give up the valve option. My wife will not ride in the car in loud mode, and I wont give up those fun car rides with her.

I ordered ARH's long system with no cats, but WITH resonators, and that will be paired to the stock mufflers (retaining valves). I am hoping the sound will be very close to ARH's full system.
 

scd603

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It’s a 2017 Shelby GT350, beautiful car but just like every other guy on this forum, why keep it stock? I went ahead and picked up the infamous JLT intake and paired it up with a set of Stainless Works LTH’s, and also put in an MBRP X-pipe, and I have to say I’m not on board with it yet. First off, the enclosure for the JLT was too high so it propped my hood up. Had to shave off about 1/4” to get the hood back down and fitting right. I tuned it and didn’t feel any appreciable difference in power, but hey, who can honestly feel the advertised 8-12hp bump anyway.
But then the exhaust….where to start with the exhaust. With the stock exhaust and MBRP, whenever I would downshift or coast in gear, it sounded like demons shrouded in a thunderstorm were fast approaching. And at wot, it had a deep growl that just meant business.
Then I added the the Stainless Works LTH. The first cold start was alarming to say the least. It was ear splitting loud. Driving it normal on the interstate wasn’t bad though. But I did lose the melodious thunder that I was accustomed to. And then there was the wot pull. Oh my….I let off at 7k because I think I heard some dogs howling in pain a couple of counties over. This thing screams like sheep at a slaughter house. It’s no longer that growl that I look forward to hearing. It’s more like the local teenagers meeting at the sonic with their gutted cherry bomb mufflers.
Now as far as performance? I had the car dynoed stock, and it put down 477 to the wheels. I was told that was unusually high. After a custom dyno tune with all of the new goodies….. 485. Yeah, that’s 8hp. Two different dynos, so I get there are discrepancies, but just 8hp after almost $3k in parts and a custom tune? I’m just not seeing the juice being worth the squeeze! The real test will be in May when we take her to a track day to see if we have any time improvements with that 8hp.
I will not any performance mods to my 350. First, it is expensive. Second, the car is awesome as is, what would I be trying to accomplish (your 8hp stat)? Third, it reduces resale value.

I had on '06 GT that I put a lot of money into including a supercharger. When I sold it to get the 350 I didn't get any of that back. Once of the reasons I bought the 350 is that I knew it would inhibit me from doing it again for the reasons mentioned.
 

illtal

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Yeah, if it doesn’t grow on me, I might be swapping everything back
That's because they are equal length, the car will sound more like a traditional flat plane crank car with them. if you look at the stock headers they are purposefully done unequal to keep the cross plane sound.
 

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Crossi

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So I took the screaming meme out for a spin to see if the sound will grow on me or if it is really that bad. Only hearing it from inside the car, I took my son and his 2015 Roush out to follow me and swap cars so I can hear the new noise maker from a different perspective. First of all, I am astonished at how fast the Shelby is NA against his supercharged Roush. I had him take off in the 350 and I thought, ‘ah….I’ll catch up….’ Nope! I struggled to reel the Shelby back in even in his 600whp monster, so maybe that 8hp really does make a difference. Anyway, back to the obnoxious noise in the room…. So from the outside, the car sounds….well….exotic. Anything past 4k rpm and it sounds Ferrari like. I guess that can be attributed to the flat plane crank. Still no gurgle on the downshifts and the low rumble I’m so accustomed to is long gone. Sadly though, I didn’t buy an exotic, I bought an American muscle car with American muscle car sounds. So all of that to say, I’m still not happy. The ultimate test will still be the track day. If it puts up Ferrari/Ariel Atom lap times, I might sacrifice and keep them, otherwise they are getting swapped back out.
Now for all of the posts about….’why would you change them in the first place’ ‘the Shelby sound is already a masterpiece’, I’d have to say that in all of my research for headers/intake installs on the Shelby, not one person brought up how it changed the tone so much. All you read is about how you can add 25-35hp in two easy steps. And who doesn’t want that. And as far as sound clips go…they are only as good as the device you are listening to them on. If I had come across a post like this prior to eviscerating the thunder from my GT350, I would have likely researched more LTH’s based on tone rather than cost and might have even stayed away from the upgrade all together. Maybe this post will help someone else from making my mistake. I will admit though….those ARH have some pretty sweet sound clips. Crap!!! There I go again! More snake oil!! Nope, it’s stock headers or nothing from now on….
 

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If you can't hear the sounds getting progressively better over these various options, then I don't know what to tell you. To me the ARH setup is the best all around setup. Now it does set you back almost $5,000 last I checked for this setup, and I haven't been able to convince myself that the improvement in sound is something I'm ready to spend.

I like oem better
 

WhiteVoodoo

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I like oem better
you mean oem w/o resonators. A friend was beside me the other day and said “that thing is loud”. I simply told him “ thank you, that’s how cars are supposed to sound.”
 

Champale

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OP - sorry you went through all of that and aren't happy with the sound. I have toyed with the idea of getting headers on my car but the sound (volume and quality) was always my biggest concern.

For people who think the OE GT350R exhaust is the best sounding, wait until you hear one with the Hooker Blackheart catback. I tried the Borla Atak and really liked it, too. But the 3" Blackheart is amazing. No drone, no ugly tones like rasp, perfect volume.

2015-2017 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350/GT350R - Hooker Blackheart Cat-Back Exhaust System 70503348-RHKR (youtube.com)
 

galaxy

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Interesting, and nice to have options. Didn’t know that system existed. I have the ATAK and I like it. Do I like it better than stock? Yes, I believe I do. Do I like it better than stock for the money spent? Probably not. Better, but not a good bang for the buck.
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