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Discussion Starter #1
I am having a local (Not dealer) mechanic replace mine with Cajun BPipes Stage 1.

As I look at the instructions that came from Cajun as well as the service manual, I have 2 questions -
  • Cajun instructions mention undoing the engine mount bolts and jacking up the engine about an inch. No mention of that in the service manual.
  • The service manual mentions draining and removing the radiator and removing the engine drive belts. Is this in order to jack up the engine?
(I think that is all in order to get the heat shields off)
Any insight on these 2 areas would be appreciated so I can relay this info to the mechanic. He has done exhaust manifolds before, just not on an Armada.
 

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Hi tchjts1,

I had to replace one of my manifolds a while back. I simply popped in a cheap replacement from A1auto. Chances are I will regret that later on, but we will see. As to your questions, I did the job by slightly jacking up the engine and removing both lower engine mounts. This has to be done in order to remove the heat shields as well as the manifolds themselves. On a side note, this is a great time to replace the engine mounts as it literally only entails removing two more bolts.

FYI, removing the front wheels and wheel liners will give you much easier access to all the bolts.


 

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I did mine myself. I am not 100% sure jacking the engine up is necessary - because I didn't try to do it without - but I believe it is because there is not a lot of wiggle room in there - you need all the room you can get. You do not have to remove the engine mounts or bolts though - just loosen them enough to jack the engine up to get the room you need. That way you don't have to worry about getting it all lined up again - just loosen, jack up, do the work, set the engine down and tighten the bolts.

I can say you 100% do not have to drain and remove the radiator - I did not and I got the job done with no damage to those parts.

Buy a 12 pack for whoever is doing the job for you - it is a bitch.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks guys! I appreciate the info you have shared, as well as the link to the excellent video!
 

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Hi tchjts1,

I had to replace one of my manifolds a while back. I simply popped in a cheap replacement from A1auto. Chances are I will regret that later on, but we will see. As to your questions, I did the job by slightly jacking up the engine and removing both lower engine mounts. This has to be done in order to remove the heat shields as well as the manifolds themselves. On a side note, this is a great time to replace the engine mounts as it literally only entails removing two more bolts.

FYI, removing the front wheels and wheel liners will give you much easier access to all the bolts.


I ordered the EXACT part number as in the one in the video that SSWISS posted, MagnaFlow 49356 and 49357. They are a "direct fit" but designed like short headers with cats all in one nice looking assembly. Perfect right? Nope, I made arrangements and an appointment to have the dealership mech install them. I received the parts but even though they are part marked with the correct part numbers they are not what was advertised nor do they look anything like the ones I ordered on the Summit Racing site. The ones I received are very poor design, poor welds and poor quality with weld splatter all over the mating surfaces. I believe what I received was the CAF looking MagnaFlow 4451500 and 4451501 part numbers that "possibly" got miss part marked. Very dissatisfied!

I would ask you SSWISS, where did you purchase your MagnaFlow manifolds? Very informative video btw! Thanks for taking the time to video and edit it so well.

I would do the JBA long headers with Cajun B pipes (Stage 1) but I'm told no shop will install them because the cats are not in the same location as OEM which violates some regulation even though they perform better than OEM. GREAT! So now I'm stuck back in the same boat trying to find after market "direct fit" manifolds that actually work.
 

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just to be clear, the video I posted is not from me. As mentioned in my precious video, I installed a cheaper aftermarket version from A1Auto.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
So I will share what I am learning as I go through this replacement process of putting on Cajun Stage 1 headers and UpRev tune:

Jeff at Cajun and Joe at UpRev provide outstanding support. They are very accessible and will answer any questions you have, without you feeling rushed or put off.
I received the components quickly upon payment. The quality of the parts (to me) are obvious. Nothing shady about them. The UpRev portion seems straightforward, for as far as I am through it, and I have had some good e-mail discussions with Joe at UpRev. I don't have the custom tune done yet as I am not to that point in the process. The Cajun stage 1 kit is still being put on as I type this.

One thing I would strongly suggest before you purchase this setup though, if you are not doing the job yourself and you plan to have a mechanic do it, is first find a mechanic willing to do it.
It's a tough job in tight spots and it is modifying the stock cat/O2 sensors setup. You are going from having a 4 cat manifold system to having a 2 cat header/long tube setup. Be sure your mechanic is aware of exactly what components are going onto the vehicle. You may have a tough time finding someone to do this work.

I was fortunate to find one willing to do it after I purchased the package, and he balked at doing the job. I talked to 6 others who just flat out turned me down.
I think he was more comfortable doing the job when he started putting the parts on and knew that they were quality and that they fit well.

But, I still stress - find a mechanic willing to do the work first.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
So my mechanic has completed the install with no issues. Took him about 8 hours.
I think part of his initial reluctance to do the job was using customer-supplied parts.
He stated that in the past he has experienced trying to put on customer parts that were just not of good quality or fit, and I can totally understand that frustration.
He was pleasantly surprised at the quality and fitment of Cajun BPipes.

Next up is putting on the initial UpRev tune, doing the data logging and getting everything dialed in.
 

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Wow a mechanic taking 8 hours to do the job? I can’t imagine how long I would take - probably a week lol.

Finding a mechanic is the stage I am at now (stage zero :)). I called a few places who said no and left a message for another who didn’t call me back.

The reduction of the cats will likely make this impossible as most mechanics won’t mess with emissions in NY especially with the CARB restrictions.

I’m wondering if there is a nearby state I can go to someone comfortable with doing this job? Seems all the titan guys don’t have an issue finding anyone.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I feel your pain, man. I truly got lucky in this guy doing the job for me. I knew he was sitting on the fence about it, so I offered him some bonus cash on top of his hourly rate, which I also paid in cash.

Have you tried going over to the TitanTalk forum and posting about anyone in your area who might have leads on someone to do it?
And when you do talk to mechanics who say no, ask them if they know of anyone in the area who might be interested in doing the work.

Another option may be to get on Craigslist and check the "Services" section. They have an automotive subsection under that. Being as it is getting near Christmas time, perhaps there are some folks strapped for cash that would be willing to do the work. You could also try posting on craigslist yourself describing what you are looking for. Craigslist can be quite sketchy though, so if you find someone through there, perhaps ask if they have some references as to the quality of their work.

I've got a feeling that if someone were to come to the guy who did the job on mine, with an identical vehicle and identical parts, he would turn them down at this point. It is a labor intensive job in very tight quarters.

Not sure where you are in NY, but I found this on Craigslist:
 

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NY is very strict around the CAT stuff - I believe there are big fines for mechanics who do the wrong thing - so to most mechanics it is just not worth it if there is other work they can do. If you are close enough to PA or CT you may have better luck. It is not a technically complicated job - like working on a transmission - it is just tedious. So you don't need the best mechanic ever - just someone competent. Took me 9 hours to do it on my back in my driveway, in August on a 95 degree day.
 

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Wow a mechanic taking 8 hours to do the job? I can’t imagine how long I would take - probably a week lol.

Finding a mechanic is the stage I am at now (stage zero :)). I called a few places who said no and left a message for another who didn’t call me back.

The reduction of the cats will likely make this impossible as most mechanics won’t mess with emissions in NY especially with the CARB restrictions.

I’m wondering if there is a nearby state I can go to someone comfortable with doing this job? Seems all the titan guys don’t have an issue finding anyone.
I’m in NYC and if I had the time, I’d help you out because although it is somewhat tedious, it really is just bolting on parts. Even the whole Uprev process couldn’t be any easier, unless Joe (Seymore4) was sitting next to you. Between work and as parents of (4) with their after school activities, barely have time for my DIY projects.
 

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If you’re running off to the dealerships or franchised automotive repair shops in NY for annual inspections/emissions, no chance in getting it done or even passing.
My 04 never had any problems with inspections/emissions even after I installed the JBA LTs. Even my current QX80, with an Injen CAI, aFe catback passes without issues. As a matter of fact, I just had the inspection renewal done last month.
 

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Thanks both for the insight and ideas. I find it amazing I have to go through such lengths to prevent my truck from spitting exhaust fumes out before it goes through the cats.

I’ll keep trying to find someone local or in a neighboring state. Unfortunately most who are willing to “risk” it are likely not that good.

I understand I might not need a certified ASE master tech, but I’ve heard of issues where mechanics installed the gasket backwards and other issues. Moreover, all the exhaust shops I’ve been to have been hacks (leaks, crooked tail pipes, etc). So I’m nervous to hand money over to have the job messed up.

If that fails, I may do it myself once I get another daily driver so I can have the truck out of commission with no impact.

What is taking 9 hours? Most of the extra time I’ve put into the truck has been due to lack of knowledge. For example, it took me about 10-12 hrs to install my radiator. Now that I know how I could bang it out in a few hours at most. I fear with the headers I could be stuck for a week!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I believe the time is spent trying to get to things. Trying to undo 16 nuts that may or may not be rusted on in spaces that you may only be able to get a quarter or half twist out of on each try because of the limited working space. If you round off a nut, or worse yet, snap a stud...
 

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If you’re running off to the dealerships or franchised automotive repair shops in NY for annual inspections/emissions, no chance in getting it done or even passing.
My 04 never had any problems with inspections/emissions even after I installed the JBA LTs. Even my current QX80, with an Injen CAI, aFe catback passes without issues. As a matter of fact, I just had the inspection renewal done last month.

Thanks for the offer - let me know if you get time ;)

As long as the exhaust passes emissions I should be ok as the shop I go doesn’t give me trouble.

I would ask them to do it but I am not sure of their mechanical capabilities.

I texted the guy from Craigslist. Let’s see if he responds.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Is the uprev tune plug and play no tuning required?
No, it is not a canned tune. It is custom, but the customization is part of the price with the Cajun package.
I'm sure you could work with Joe from UpRev if you want it separately.

If you want plug and play, then go with something like Bully Dog, SuperChips, etc.

It is the customization of UpRev that is needed for proper AF ratio after the JBA headers install.
 
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