I did the FAE muffler bypass at the beginning of this season. I already have the FAE and built a custom surf flap due to the FAE destroying the wave.
- Price was high for what you get - $190.25 shipped
- Lack of mandrel bends is unfortunate, as is being totally unfinished
- Fit was decent. One side fit better than the other (I think it was the starboard side that had the better fit). Regardless, no issues with 60+ hours on them so not a problem and I never fiddled with them once post initial install. Paint held up well; just did a ton of thin rattle can coats of high temp paint.
- Performance gain for sure. I lost about 5MPH when I installed the FAE originally. I gained a little back going to a 15" prop. The bypass gained me an additional 1MPH - all measured by two different GPS units on the same water/conditions/loads and is consistently repeatable. 100% factual that the bypass increases power.
- It is noticeable how much more water comes out of the FAE pipe vs the weep holes when on the hose at idle - obviously less back pressure in the exhaust system
- Sound wise, I think it sound the same except at WOT, where the boat got a bit more of the aggressive sound back. My buddy who is with us most times out thought it was a little quieter. For certain it isn't any louder
- Space increase is significant. Far easier to work on that part of the motor now with no muffler.
Fairly straight forward. The only hard part is getting the old rubber couplers off. Just takes a lot of twisting, pushing, turning and some use of a screwdriver to pry it free. Paint in the butt - putting the new unit on is cake. Painting the pipes was nothing more than a ton of thin coats with 500 degree high-temp paint, hanging them in the air with a wire hanger to get full coverage.
Pics below. It is a worthwhile mod but for the price should come either painted or polished SS and be mandrel bends...heck, I'd pay a little more for a mandrel bent SS product.