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Perhaps the most popular mod to any bike - and one that causes more debate than any other - is the exhaust system.  Riders purchase pipes for any of the following reasons
bulletperformance gains

Your priorities will determine how much research you'll have to do before your purchase, and what else you'll have to install at the same time.  Regardless of the reason, pipes can significantly affect performance.

Style - definitely the easiest reason to satisfy, but also the most precarious.  A good-looking pipe doesn't mean it's the best match performance-wise.

Sound - sound is hard to shop for unless you've heard the pipe you want on someone else's bike (which must be the same model as yours to be a true indicator).  Some pipe manufacturers do include sound bites on their websites. 

NEW - We have started to collect video & sound of certain pipes installed on the Raider.  Look for SOUND CLIP in the description of the pipe.

Performance - if you are interested in power gains, check out the "Educational Content" on performance posted in the Articles section of this site.  Here are a few accepted ideas (rules, caveats, etc.) that experience and "those in the know" seem to reinforce.
bulletBikes come from the factory running lean to meet EPA requirements.  Most aftermarket pipes flow more exhaust gases than stock, meaning that the bike will run even leaner (good for people, bad for internal combustion engines) if other measures (recalibration of Fuel Injection) are not taken
bulletUsually, the pipe alone will not make more power.  Adjustments to fuel injection/carburetion should also be considered for maximum gains.
bulletWe have it on good advice that installing a pipe that is longer than stock is detrimental to performance.
bulletPipe Design - 2-into-1 systems offer the best performance gains, followed by 2-into-2's that have a crossover.  NOTE: While it has two outlets, from a functional standpoint, the Raider's stock system is a 2-into-1 pipe.
bulletWhile beneficial on the strip, drag pipes (straight, no baffles) are the worst for everyday riding.
bulletWhen shopping for an exhaust, look at out Dyno Page for real-world performance numbers.  Note the intake and FI module used on the dyno run.
bulletRaider Specific - the stock air-box on the Raider is an excellent design that flows more air than the engine needs under most conditions.  What this means for you as the Raider owner is that the installation of an aftermarket intake ("big air") is not really necessary, and will not increase performance to the level as other modifications such as an FI module and exhaust.

NOTE: When replacing your exhaust, it's absolutely vital to replace the crush gaskets where the head-pipe meets the cylinder head.  Some pipe manufacturers include gaskets with their systems, some don't.  They run less than $25/pair, so it's a worthwhile investment. OEM Exhaust Gaskets part #1175368

Freedom Performance - A name that Raiders might not be familiar with, but have been involved with the American V-Twin market for years is Freedom Performance.  In 2011, FP introduced a pretty extensive line of pipes for the Raider.  With a definitive patriotic attitude, their systems carry names like "Amendment" and "Independence", and feature 2.5" diameter pipes, full coverage, seamless heat shields, and a signature sound.  All Freedom Performance pipes come with a removable performance baffle, with an optional quiet baffle available, and O2 sensor bungs where required.  Shipping on all Freedom Performance Exhausts is a flat $35.00 to the lower 48 continental United States.

Raider Performance is a Freedom Performance authorized dealer, and carries the complete line of Freedom Performance pipes for Yamaha, Kawasaki, Suzuki, Honda, Indian, Harley-Davidson and Victory motorcycles.

Combat 2-into-1 - Raider

The highly-anticipated follow-up to the popular Sharp Curve Radius, the new Combat  system for the Raider offers renowned Freedom Performance quality, construction, and style, together with the track-proven performance gains that only a true 2-into-1 system provides.  Based on their American Outlaw system for American V-twins, the Combat offers its own unique endcap design, along with a triple-step header, merge collector and megaphone muffler with 2-step baffle.  Available in all chrome, chrome with black endcap, or all black ceramic.

Finish and Options

Sharp Curve Radius - Raider -

The Sharp Curve Radius is the curved 2-into-2 exhaust that Raider enthusiasts have been asking for since day 1.  Just the right length, featuring Freedom Performance's seamless heat shields and a triple-step header, the SCR offers killer style and awesome performance.  Available in Chrome or Black Ceramic. Standard performance or optional quiet baffle. Featured on October 2011's Cover Bike.

Finish and Baffles

Cobra USA - Cobra is currently offering four pipes for the Raider.  All offer a lifetime guarantee against bluing, and full-length heat shields.

On Closeout! the Tri-Pro 2-into-1 for the Raider.  From out of nowhere, Cobra announced their Tri-Pro 2-into-1 exhaust for the Raider, and then just as quickly, ceased production due to low demand.  Originally designed for the Suzuki M109R, now available in both chrome and black ceramic with a chrome tip, the Tri-Pro offers the performance benefits of a true 2-into-1 system in a unique "tri-oval" package.  Cobra promises a deep mellow rumble that smoothes out at highway speeds.


bullet Tri-Pro 2-into-1 Exhaust - Chrome
bullet Tri-Pro 2-into-1 Exhaust - Black


Speedster Slashdown - Raider

Speedster Slashdown for the Raider offer what Cobra calls a "PowerPort", a crossover between the two pipes that is supposed to give the power benefits of a 2-into-1 system.  Certainly louder than stock, they will definitely enhance the sound of the engine, but these pipes are baffled as well, so you can expect them to be quieter than a straight-through pipe.  Fits all years.

bullet SOUND CLIP of Speedster Slashdowns, courtesy of Eian from our forum.  Eian also notes:

"The video has the baffles installed and they are a nice rumble at idle and cruise but will definitely let you know that they are there when you give her a little gas. I had the baffles out and ended up putting them back in because without them I was constantly setting off the neighbors car alarm"

Speedster Swept Exhaust - Raider

Speedster Swept Exhaust - Yamaha Raider offer the same technology and similar construction to the Slashdowns, but in a curved, swept design inspired by the custom market that compliments the lines of the bike.  The pipes have proven to be very popular among Raider owners. 

SOUND CLIP of the Swepts can be found here, posted by RochNYRaider.

Dragsters - Raider

Dragsters for the Raider offer the classic straight drag-pipe look.  They include full-length heat shields, removable baffles, and billet tips on the pipes.  Based on their construction, you can expect these pipes to be on the louder side.  Note that the pipes are shorter than shown in the pictures on Cobra's website.  An accurate depiction of the pipes can be seen on BusaJack's Raider here.

SOUND CLIP of Dragsters, from forum member Madcruzer, who posted more clips here.

Forum member AZ installed the Dragsters and Cobra FI2000 Fuel Processor.  Installation was painless and took less than 2 hours including the fuel processor.  This system is much, much lighter than stock, offers a lot more sound, better engine breathing, and better top end performance.  Check out his comments in the forum.

Vance & Hines - Vance & Hines has a reputation for manufacturing serious, quality exhaust systems.  While they make every attempt to build style into every system, their priority has always been performance.  V&H will never bring a pipe to market that compromises performance for appearance, and in many cases this means it might take longer than typical to bring a system to market.

Both Big Radius Systems can now be purchased directly at a significant discount by clicking the links below
Big Radius 2-into-1 for Raider

Big Radius 2-into-1 for the Raider was Vance & Hines' first pipe for the Raider.  An interesting pipe, developed by V&H to combined the custom aesthetics of a curved exhaust with the proven performance of their 2-into-1 systems.  The styling is somewhat controversial - some love it, some will hate it. Fit and finish to be just about perfect, and the curve of the pipe compliments the lines of the bike, especially regarding the rear fender area.  Styling aside, you can bet on the fact that with the proper fuel management, performance gains will be significant. If you've ever heard any Vance & Hines exhaust, you know that they provide a very nice, deep rumble to large V-twin engines, louder than stock, but never obnoxious.  Part number for the Raider Big Radius 2-into-1 is 28501.

SOUND CLIP of the Big Radius courtesy of forum member Aaron, posted by MountainMan113.

Big Radius 2-into-2 for Raider

Due in a big way to our petition, V&H has brought the Big Radius 2-into-2 pipe to the market.  It took quite a while, but they went ahead with more R&D and developed a solution that provides the performance gains that they are known for.  The Vance and Hines Big Radius 2-into-2 Power Chamber system utilizes their patented cross-over to provide the performance of the 2-into-1 system, while having the style that Raider owners wanted.

Morton's Customs - A custom bike shop out of North Carolina, Morton's has introduced a set of curved, swept pipes for the Raider.  Obviously influenced by their experience in the custom scene, this system is a classic, straight-through design, without baffles.  To break up the reversion pulse than can cause power losses in a straight-through system, they sell a pair of optional "Power-Cones".  You can expect this system to be LOUD, and Proper fuel management will be crucial with these pipes, but there's no denying the style they add.  They are available in both chrome and black ceramic.  Tejas Thump Cycles out of Meadow, TX, also sells these same pipes as "Raiderz", and includes the Power Cones in the purchase price.
bulletWe had some serious concerns about the quality and fit of these pipes.  Owners who have installed this exhaust have expressed a number of issues.  Installation was very difficult, as the O2 sensor bung was not centered in the hole in the pipe, and it took a couple of hours to file it down.  The bend in the pipe was not correct for the front cylinder, and did not seal correctly.  The curve of this system allows the tips of the pipes to grind along the ground when the bike is leaned over in a turn.
bulletUPDATE - Morton's did take a personal interest in the difficulties our members were having with these pipes, and has assured us that the quality control issues have been resolved.  The O2 sensor hole issue has been fixed, and the mount has more adjustability built into it to assist in proper fitment, as well as sealing at the front cylinder head.

RoadBurner - While perhaps not at the forefront in many riders minds when it comes to aftermarket exhaust systems, RoadBurner pipes are definitely worth consideration when it the market for a quality pipe.  Featuring full length Doublewall Construction, RoadBurner claims to have the patent on the first non-bluing pipes in the industry, and offer a 1-year warranty that the pipes will not blue.  RoadBurner's site has not been updated to show their systems on the Raider, but the following pipes can be seen on the bike and are available for purchase at Direct Line Parts.
bulletVelocity 2-into-1 - A true, high-performance 2-into-1 system, the Velocity features S-Bend equal length header pipes and a two-piece endcap.  DLP has bolted the Velocity onto their house Raider and reported that fit and quality are excellent.  Also available on the Velocity Lites version without the machined endcap.
bullet2 1/2" Street Pros - Classically designed drag pipes with 2 1/2" outer pipes, and a standard spiral core/baffle.
bullet3" Step Drag Pros - These drag-type pipes feature a stepped inner pipe, starting at 1 3/4" Dia. and ending at 2", contributing to performance.  Outer pipe is 3" Dia, giving the overall system a fat look.

Copyright 2013 LDA Technical Consulting, LLC & RaiderPerformance.com  All rights reserved.
Revised: 10/29/17.