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  • Exhaust Headers

    So I'm deciding on headers after putting the exhaust on, so far it seems the logical choice are RB or Jackson racing, Rspeed has a JR header that's Ceramic coated for 460, RB lists theirs for 448. I've looked on eBay and it seems there's a company called Manzo that makes a decent looking header that's 187. What has been halls experience with headers and in talks opinion what's the best option?


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    Last edited by GTOTT97; 03-11-2017, 11:09 AM.
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  • #2
    If you discount the pricey long-tube stuff, the RB is generally regarded as being the best. That being said I doubt it's much of a difference in regards to performance gains over the similarly designed cheap ebay headers. If the coating on the jackson header is good quality, I'd go that route. I found a used RB unit and sent it to swain tech in NY for coating. The difference in heat emission was substantial.
    2018 Forester 2.5i 6MT
    2017 NV3500

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    • #3
      I wouldnt waste $ on an RB or Jackson. First generally the gains are minimal at best over a stock header, and secondly a Raceland 1.6 header is the same design as RB and does the same thing for $150ish.
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      • #4
        I've had problems installing RL headers on other cars. It has been mostly firewall/tunnel clearance issues. I know some have had issues with the welds failing on them as well. I run a coated JR header I took on trade when I went back to n/a many years ago. It has held up pretty well. I had developed a crack downstream after about 80k miles, but had it repaired easily.

        The only true difference is quality and S/C fitment (if you plan to use a JRSC anytime down the road). I also took the JR header for CARB compliance at the time. Unless you uncork the rest of the exhaust stream, the 1.6 headers don't make that much more HP over stock. If you are looking at them for a 1.8, an NB2 header is the way to go for value.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by kung fu jesus View Post
          I've had problems installing RL headers on other cars. It has been mostly firewall/tunnel clearance issues. I know some have had issues with the welds failing on them as well.
          I have never had issues with a 1.6 RL header. OBX headers tend to be problematic, and RL NB units sometimes dont fit right. I have seen quite a few JR, RB, and Bosal headers fail in terms of breakage. I see no huge difference there.
          For me its a dollar to benefit ratio. Its just not there, so why spend much on a header for a 1.6
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          • #6
            The only model years a header makes sense to swap is the 99-00 NB's. That log exhaust manifold is worthy of GM, replacing it with an OBX EBay header got me a nice little bump in power. For a 1.6, it's not going to get you much in real world gains, and because you'll lose the stock heat shield, your under hood temps will rise to the point where you're losing power.

            A better investment would would be a Randall cold air intake that draws cold airbof the high pressure zone at the base of the windshield. Then switch to premium gas and advance your timing. You can make a "Randall" from $20 worth of Home Depot stuff, and advancing the timing on a 1.6 is free! You saved $400, which you can use buying 95 octane gas.
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            • #7
              Originally posted by oldgrayfrog View Post
              The only model years a header makes sense to swap is the 99-00 NB's. That log exhaust manifold is worthy of GM, replacing it with an OBX EBay header got me a nice little bump in power. For a 1.6, it's not going to get you much in real world gains, and because you'll lose the stock heat shield, your under hood temps will rise to the point where you're losing power.

              A better investment would would be a Randall cold air intake that draws cold airbof the high pressure zone at the base of the windshield. Then switch to premium gas and advance your timing. You can make a "Randall" from $20 worth of Home Depot stuff, and advancing the timing on a 1.6 is free! You saved $400, which you can use buying 95 octane gas.
              I could care less about any gain, my main gripe is that this is my second factory 1.6 manifold and it's cracked after a few months of me having it, which ever I decide, looking towards race land now, it'll be coated or wrapped, most likely Ceramic coated


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              • #8
                I wouldn't put any wrap on a daily driver header as it has a tendency to trap moisture on short trips and set the stage for corrosion/rust. And yes, I've seen a magnet stick to eBay/chinese stainless parts and seen them rust.
                | 90 Miata | Turbocharged Stock Mazda FE-dohc 2.0L engine swap | 302whp 281ftlbs |

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by FE3tMX5 View Post
                  I wouldn't put any wrap on a daily driver header as it has a tendency to trap moisture on short trips and set the stage for corrosion/rust. And yes, I've seen a magnet stick to eBay/chinese stainless parts and seen them rust.
                  I sent an email out to a somewhat respectable seeming coating shop, I'm waiting for word back and will plan from there


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                  • #10
                    I would wrap a good mild steel header that had a good coating on it all day long. My first Jackson racing header was wrapped for many years before I bought it and I drove it wrapped for many more without issues. When I bent it I pulled the wrap off and saw no signs of degradation.

                    If it's straight mild steel or stainless then avoid wrap.

                    Also I felt there was a noticable bump in power after intially installing mine, that will be dependent on how tired your engine is.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by 91LudeSiT View Post
                      I would wrap a good mild steel header that had a good coating on it all day long. My first Jackson racing header was wrapped for many years before I bought it and I drove it wrapped for many more without issues. When I bent it I pulled the wrap off and saw no signs of degradation.

                      If it's straight mild steel or stainless then avoid wrap.

                      Also I felt there was a noticable bump in power after intially installing mine, that will be dependent on how tired your engine is.
                      Would the ceramic coating act as a protector for the steel once it's on?


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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by GTOTT97 View Post
                        Would the ceramic coating act as a protector for the steel once it's on?


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                        Yea it'll keep it from rusting. The problems with wrap don't from raw steel which the wrap holds moisture against and will cause rusting.

                        With stainless is a different problem. The wrap can actually cause the tube wall temps to become so high that it'll start to vent the chromium to atmosphere, you don't want to breathe hexavalent chromium by the way, and weaken the steel.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by 91LudeSiT View Post
                          Yea it'll keep it from rusting. The problems with wrap don't from raw steel which the wrap holds moisture against and will cause rusting.

                          With stainless is a different problem. The wrap can actually cause the tube wall temps to become so high that it'll start to vent the chromium to atmosphere, you don't want to breathe hexavalent chromium by the way, and weaken the steel.
                          Thanks for the info, I'll order the header in the next week or so


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                          • #14
                            from what Ive seen these headers look like the best value to me. Good coating, good design, and a good price.

                            https://www.summitracing.com/parts/x...da/model/miata

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Blake View Post
                              from what Ive seen these headers look like the best value to me. Good coating, good design, and a good price.

                              https://www.summitracing.com/parts/x...da/model/miata
                              I ended up with a raceland, hard to beat 159 with free shipping.


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