Help me go through up-pipe gutting
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This is a discussion on Help me go through up-pipe gutting within the Engine Modifications forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; Hey there, I just bought a 2004 WRX. It's mostly stock with a K&N drop in filter and an axle ...

  1. #1
    Registered User Crazyced's Avatar
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    Arrow Help me go through up-pipe gutting

    Hey there, I just bought a 2004 WRX. It's mostly stock with a K&N drop in filter and an axle back exhaust. The one thing I would like to tackle ASAP is the up-pipe. I'm still completely baffled that Subaru somehow went through with putting a cat there but that's beside the point.

    Considering I plan on keeping the car 'stock', I think the best for me is just to gut the stocker. From the research I did, I think the only down side (vs aftermarket) is some people noticing wastegate flutter (anyone else noticed this?).

    Now, when it comes to actually doing it, I'm not afraid of the steps themselves. I have a shop with a lift and all the tools needed (except maybe a flex head 14mm and O2 sensor socket). What makes me pucker though, is 10 years of Canadian winters and their effect on bolts and nuts. I got the car on the lift and took a look at the bottom heat shield and the nuts on them look more solidly welded then the chassis itself. Knowing that, and from past experience, what I don't what to happen is to have a paperweight car just because I snapped a couple of studs.

    So could someone share a list of P/N of studs/bolts/nuts that I better stock up before going through with this endeavor? Just so I'm not stuck with my only mode of transportation up on the lift?

    Thank you
    2004 Subaru Impreza WRX
    2004 Dodge Neon SRT-4

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  3. #2
    Luke Skywalker Mikie13's Avatar
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    Step 1: Go to Rallysportdirect.com

    Step 2: Order Grimmspeed UP

    Step 3: Install.

    Step 4: Profit.

    Step 5: Get bitchez.
    The Hawk-Eye Alliance #90|The Blobeye Syndicate #0|The Stink-Eye Mob #0|N.E.R.D. Founding Member & #3
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  4. #3
    Registered User MainFrame's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikie13 View Post
    Step 1: Go to Rallysportdirect.com

    Step 2: Order Grimmspeed UP

    Step 3: Install.

    Step 4: Profit.

    Step 5: Get bitchez.

    I gutted my stock uppipe 10 years ago and it was no big deal.. free, and worked great.



    But that was on a one year old car. I don't know of a parts list for all of the rusted up bolts, but any competent Subaru parts department should be able to get everything together.

  5. #4
    Registered User Crazyced's Avatar
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    One of the reasons why I would prefer gutting the stocker is that I already have it and don't have to wait for shipping. Plus even though the Grimmspeed is a very nice piece (I presume it's not back ordered anymore) It still wouldn't come with turbo to downpipe or manifold bolts that can possibly snap.

    It is unreasonable for me to think that I could do this job without removing either the turbo (by turbo I mean the oil/coolant lines attached to it) or the manifold?
    2004 Subaru Impreza WRX
    2004 Dodge Neon SRT-4

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    Registered User wreckingball man's Avatar
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    PB Blaster
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    Read the DIY's

  7. #6
    Registered User Crazyced's Avatar
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    Anyone has a good link that has all the OEM parts blow out plans along with the Subaru part numbers?

    Again, from past experiences, the way to go is to get to the dealer with the part numbers already in hand. Otherwise they often find ways to screw up. If I have those parts I will be able to tackle this job with confidence.
    2004 Subaru Impreza WRX
    2004 Dodge Neon SRT-4

  8. #7
    ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ Rambo's Avatar
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    You can definitely do the uppipe without removing the turbo. I did. You only need to disconnect the downpipe for access to the bolts underneath the downpipe.

    You will definitely need to remove the manifold though. I don't remember the exact size, but I want to say it was 12mm? None of my stock header bolts were bad, but I went ahead and replaced them anyway. You can source Grade 8, M12 bolts at the hardware store.

    Search around for the Subaru maintenance manual PDFs. I don't have the link handy, but they are available online for free, and have exploded views with all hardware, torque specs, etc.

    Also be sure to pick up all new exhaust gaskets. Grimmspeed's are thicker than OEM, giving you a bit of wiggle room if can't quite get everything lined up perfect upon reinstallation.
    Isaac -- 2003 WRX sedan Stg II - Gave its life for mine 6/2013.
    2007 Outback 3.0R wagon
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    Master Baiter EJ257's Avatar
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    Grimmspeed includes new uppipe studs with their unit (at least they have for every one I've installed).
    2005 WRX STi (Mods | Virtual Dyno)

    Resident Tuner @ WTF Tuning, LLC

    "Never trust anything that bleeds for a week and lives ..."

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  10. #9
    Registered User Crazyced's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rambo View Post
    You will definitely need to remove the manifold though.
    Interesting, some of these guys claim that they did remove it without touching the manifold.
    Removing up pipe w/o removing manifold - NASIOC

    I would definitely prefer not to touch the manifold if I can avoid it.
    2004 Subaru Impreza WRX
    2004 Dodge Neon SRT-4

  11. #10
    ClubWRX.net Vendor rexxx0486's Avatar
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    I ended up just buying a turbo xs up pipe for like 90 bucks shipped... They even threw in the lack of bloody knuckles! Plus it looks purty.
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  12. #11
    ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ Rambo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crazyced View Post
    Interesting, some of these guys claim that they did remove it without touching the manifold.
    Removing up pipe w/o removing manifold - NASIOC

    I would definitely prefer not to touch the manifold if I can avoid it.
    Removing the manifold is 100x easier than messing with the turbo, IMO. You don't have to remove the entire header assembly: you can get away with just removing the manifold where the left and right headers come together and are routed to the uppipe. I just dropped the entire header and manifold as one piece though. That gave me a good look at the exhaust valves while I was under there.

    You'll also need to unbolt the passenger side engine mount and lift the engine up a couple inches in order for the uppipe to clear. This is easy to do and is not as scary as it sounds. One upside of aftermarket uppipes is their narrower width, so you only need to jack up the engine for removal. If you gut the uppipe, you'll need to do this for removal and install.

    Use PB blaster and six point sockets (DO NOT USE 12 points!)

    Drive the car to the work area and lift it up the night before. Wait an hour and spray PB blaster on all bolts. The next morning, spray all bolts again. You'd be surprised what PB Blaster can do once it's had time to soak in.


    Last thing: I have a catted uppipe laying around in the garage if you wanted to gut that first and have it ready for the swap.
    Isaac -- 2003 WRX sedan Stg II - Gave its life for mine 6/2013.
    2007 Outback 3.0R wagon
    Proud owner of a N.E.R.D, Member 1.38×10-23

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  13. #12
    Registered User Crazyced's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rambo View Post
    Removing the manifold is 100x easier than messing with the turbo, IMO. You don't have to remove the entire header assembly: you can get away with just removing the manifold where the left and right headers come together and are routed to the uppipe. I just dropped the entire header and manifold as one piece though. That gave me a good look at the exhaust valves while I was under there.

    You'll also need to unbolt the passenger side engine mount and lift the engine up a couple inches in order for the uppipe to clear. This is easy to do and is not as scary as it sounds. One upside of aftermarket uppipes is their narrower width, so you only need to jack up the engine for removal. If you gut the uppipe, you'll need to do this for removal and install.

    Use PB blaster and six point sockets (DO NOT USE 12 points!)

    Drive the car to the work area and lift it up the night before. Wait an hour and spray PB blaster on all bolts. The next morning, spray all bolts again. You'd be surprised what PB Blaster can do once it's had time to soak in.


    Last thing: I have a catted uppipe laying around in the garage if you wanted to gut that first and have it ready for the swap.
    Hahaha thank you for the offer but I think I should be fine (unless you live in the Ottawa region ).
    2004 Subaru Impreza WRX
    2004 Dodge Neon SRT-4

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