Unbalanced pipes on an 850

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Jan 10, 2006
I have unbalanced exhausts on my 850 and I wondered if this could affect and how to the behaviour of the engine, as all the manuals I've read say I sould have them balanced... For the moment it seems to go fine... what could happen?

Cheers, everyone!
balanced pipes

Hi Sparkplug,
Most modern bikes run balanced systems no doubt to help with increasing noise restrictions, when running more restrictive mufflers its easier to exhaust each cylinder through two mufflers rather than one.
In addition, IF, the system is engineered correctly some power can be gained through better exhaust scavenging. I have read where some claim a balanced system idles better????.
I'm not sure when the balanced system was introduced on Norton bikes, but, my 74 850 does not have them, and runs fine. Whether or not its any better I can't say, but, in my humble opinion the balanced system is just that much more complicated (IE another place to leak or break) and is UUGGLLYY!!!!
hey, justa thought,
When I bought my 850 74 in 82 it was unbalanced, I put a balanced system on and the torque in mid range definately improved but the noise did reduce.
Re: balanced pipes

geo46er said:
I'm not sure when the balanced system was introduced on Norton bikes,

All 850s had them as far as I know, so from 1973-on.

I also believe the main reason for fitting the balance pipe was to reduce noise, and it can increase the mid-range power slightly, although there is a small top end power loss, and either system can be used, but there can be a loss of power if the unbalanced pipes are used with the standard 'black cap' silencers (mufflers).

It would seem most folk prefer un-balance these days, after all we want more noise not less. Also the old boogey of exhaust nuts comming loose is worse with the balance system.

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