Exhaust dents are easy to put in but with patience and care they can be removed again. Here’s how to remove exhaust dents.
We have all managed to dent our motorcycle exhausts at one point or another. It can be rather disappointing especially if the bike or pipe is brand new. With the hard enduro scene being more popular than ever I am seeing bikes with beat up pipes all over the place. So if you are one of these guys with a pipe full of dents, here’s how to remove exhaust dents and get your pipe back to perfect operating condition.
Start by removing the pipe from the bike, in this case a Sherco. This absolutely cannot be done safely with the pipe still fitted to the bike.
Take your exhaust plug tool and fit the clamps to each end of the exhaust. Tighten them firmly and be sure that the rubber seals are making good contact.
Now hold the exhaust in the vice so that it cannot slip. Remember the pipe is going to get very hot so if you have anything touching the pipe it will melt.
Take your oxy torch and get it lit and ready. Pressurise the exhaust with air using a tyre inflator. Be careful not to over inflate it otherwise the exhaust may distort or split. Start with no more than 30 psi.
Start heating the dent with the oxy torch. Slowly work from the outside of the dent and work your way in. You will start to see the dent slowly come out as you heat the metal around the dent until the exhaust is glowing red. But be careful because if you heat the exhaust to much and turn the metal of the exhaust molten it will likely blow out.
Once the dent has been removed and you are happy with it, turn the torch off and allow the exhaust to cool. When the exhaust has cooled you can remove the exhaust plugs and if you choose polish the heat marks out of the exhaust. Take care when removing the plugs as hot air will escape and can potentially cause burns.
DO’S – How to remove exhaust dents.
- Take care not to overheat the pipe.
- Take care not to over pressurize the pipe.
- Wear heat proof gloves and eye protection.
DON’TS – How to remove exhaust dents.
- Touch the exhaust with bare hands once hot.
- Remove the exhaust plugs when the exhaust is hot.
- Concentrate the heat to much in one area or you may cause the exhaust to burst open.
Exhaust plug kit, oxy/acetylene torch, vice
I much prefer to us an oxy acetylene torch for this job as I find it quicker but I have also used propane torches in the past. A propane torch requires a little more work than an oxy torch and is safer for anyone not familiar working with heat or metal. Propane torches are cheaper and more readily available than an oxy torch which requires two industrial gas bottles connected to a handheld torch. Propane torches are available in most hardware stores and take up less space in your garage. I have also had people tell me that they have used industrial heat guns but I would expect this to take much more time and effort.
If you are not familiar with operating an oxy torch or working with heat then employ the help of someone who does as this can be a dangerous job for someone with little experience.