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Old 10-29-2010, 07:59 AM   #1
kz1 OP
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Question about blue headers

On the newer Triumph's, almost all of the headers look to be a very dark blue with very few miles on them. What causes this? Is it cheap metal used for the headers? Is it an engine problem? I think they are great bikes for day trips which is what I mainly do now.
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Old 10-29-2010, 08:17 AM   #2
plugeye
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thats normal for all headers
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Old 10-29-2010, 08:21 AM   #3
mneblett
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Single wall headers -- the chrome blues with heat, even on the highest quality pipes. Add heat and oxygen, and the chemical reaction occurs -- period.

The only BMW of which I'm aware that doesn't blue its headers is the R1200C cruiser -- which is also the only boxer BMW ever provided with double-wall head pipes, allegedy because the target audience wouldn't tolerate pipe bluing.
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Old 10-29-2010, 09:00 AM   #4
outfit
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There's some great colour's come onto single walled header's and I think they look fantastic.
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Old 10-29-2010, 09:02 AM   #5
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I've always been under the impression and understanding that headers turning blue is worse if an engine is running lean (higher exhaust temp). I don't know if it can be eliminated completely, but it might be possible to minimize it. I had also heard that "todays chrome" is not of the quality that it was "back in the day". Some of this is based on talk around hot rod circles, expecially open wheel cars like T Roadsters, 32 Highboys, etc.. Maybe just a wives tale....dunno. I was always more interested in GO, than SHOW, so never concerned myself with it (translated = lazy) too much.

Lynn
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Old 10-29-2010, 10:19 AM   #6
lrutt
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Actually, this can be somewhat prevented.

I have 2 old Triumphs and a Norton and they aren't blue, Might have a very slight gold tinge to them but that's it.

Trick is to coat the headers before installing. Get the highest heat bbq paint you can find in a quart can and pour it in with the ends of the pipe capped off. Roll around and coat thoroghly then let excess pour out to the can. Let dry completely and install. Might smell pretty bad initially buy your pipes will stay nice. Not much you can do with already blued pipes. I've not had much luck with that blue away stuff.
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Old 10-29-2010, 10:22 AM   #7
blaine.hale
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It would just be un-natural if they DIDN'T blue.
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Old 10-29-2010, 10:46 AM   #8
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Proof it's not a garage queen?
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Old 10-29-2010, 10:59 AM   #9
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[quote=lake_harley]I've always been under the impression and understanding that headers turning blue is worse if an engine is running lean (higher exhaust temp). I don't know if it can be eliminated completely, but it might be possible to minimize it. I had also heard that "todays chrome" is not of the quality that it was "back in the day". Some of this is based on talk around hot rod circles, expecially open wheel cars like T Roadsters, 32 Highboys, etc.. Maybe just a wives tale....dunno. I was always more interested in GO, than SHOW, so never concerned myself with it (translated = lazy) too much.


Back in the day we use to advise our customers the best way to prevent bluing on their then brand new airheads was to get back out of the choke as quickly as possible after start up and to not let their bike warm up too much while stationary. Rich really heats the pipes up. Air pump or not, unburned gas that gets into the pipes burns there creating a hotter than normal exhaust.
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Old 10-29-2010, 11:01 AM   #10
Bill Harris
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A bluish tinge is normal, especially with today's leaner EPA-compliant mixtures and higher exhaust gas temps. I look at it as the "patina of loving use".



Abnormal is a darker "indigo" color, which does suggest too-lean mixtures/too-high exhaust gas temps.
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Bill Harris screwed with this post 10-30-2010 at 01:31 AM
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Old 10-29-2010, 11:09 AM   #11
larryboy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lake_harley
I've always been under the impression and understanding that headers turning blue is worse if an engine is running lean (higher exhaust temp).
Lynn

Lean will actually remove the bluing, eventually burning the chrome away and leave black plain steel like Bill mentioned.
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Old 10-29-2010, 11:18 AM   #12
crazydrummerdude
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Quote:
Originally Posted by outfit
There's some great colour's come onto single walled header's and I think they look fantastic.
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Old 10-29-2010, 11:58 AM   #13
Yarddog
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Hain't been ridin' for very long, eh? Normal...is proof that the bike is a road dog, not a garage queen... That ain't no Honda/Yamaha/Suzuki/Kawasaki...
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Old 10-29-2010, 12:14 PM   #14
Al Tuna
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I do know, on the old Honda's advancing the timing will make them run stronger and blue the pipes.
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Old 10-29-2010, 11:48 PM   #15
danedg
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Some bikes run hotter than others...

This one's 45 years old...the silencers are new, the headers are original...
I've put 20k on 'em....they're "honey" colored.....

Blueing happens...it's not always "normal"....
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