TA Performance Race Headers cross over headaches

Toby_Goodmk

Test Fit officianto
Toby I feel for you .. yeah They screwed me over on 2 sets of rocker arm shafts that snapped ... which is why I will never buy from them again .. plenty of other good people out there that are willing to stand up for things they make .. if you know a fabricator that problem is super easy to fix.. just order 2 vbands and cut off the old ones .. use a motor with heads as a fixture and put the new vbands on the CORRECT way ... sucks we have to fix vendors problems ..

I am super reliant on myself to get things done on my own, I know it is super easy to get a fabricator to fix it, i just wanted to insure myself that it was nothing that I did on my own, or something that I could not address on my own.
 

Toby_Goodmk

Test Fit officianto
Instead of all you guys telling the OP to send them back and start over again, why don't you suggest a better set up...........?? Is there one out there of the same quality and equal performance gain?

Is it perhaps because you can't? Is it perhaps because most, if not EVERY SINGLE system out there provides its own problems?

Is it my memory failing or was GM known for somewhat "imprecise" fitting of just about EVERY part on ANY car manufactured in the 80's?

Thanks UAW!!!!!! Great job!

My TA SS headers have been installed, taken off, put back on and off and on the car again and again with little issue.

Mike works hard to make quality, good fitting parts and you guys piling on with your pissy complaints just goes to show you don't give a good got damn about if vendors continue to care and continue to make parts for our very obsolete cars.

Show me a TR body or engine that sits exactly on the car as the same one sitting next to it at a show and shine. It won't happen.

Mike's stuff is built to exact tolerances and made as close to the variance's the factory let slide back in the day. Each item is the same. It isn't his fault some GM union hack didn't square up and properly place the piece he was putting on the car correctly.

Let me ask all of you this......... What aftermarket piece have ANY of you put on your car without a little "nudge or wiggle" ?

But then again, it's only my opinion and I could be wrong.







GM wasn't exactly known for "precise tolerances" in the 80's, were they?
If you are aware of my back round you would be aware that I spent thousands of hours making things fit for the body panel side of the business for our cars, so I understand exactly what TA performance goes through. I wish this not to be a pissing contest, rather an info thread where people can look at this issue and see if they can find an answer to their question. I browsed through this forum everytime I have an issue with something. This was something where not alot was discussed, however more than we expect have issues. Whether it be installing them incorrect, installing them correct and having issues with them sealing down the road, etc. The bitch that I have with TA is when you bring it to their attention you are scoffed at, which I was. Honestly. If it were not for Nick talking me off the edge with these I would have already bought a set of factory replacement style with the other type of connection and called it a day. I think V band style headers should be reserved for custom built units, cause if you think about it, that is probably the only way to insure you have a positive fitment. Making a V band header is a good thing, and a bad thing at the same time if you ask me.
 

Toby_Goodmk

Test Fit officianto
When, where, how did the OP, in this thread, say he had special needs that said "this system will require modifications for installation if not using setup X,Y,Z " ???? Not once.

Did the OP install new body bushings, motor mounts, trans brace mounts, drop spindles, larger wheels, bigger/smaller front sway bar, remove the front sway bar altogether, install an aftermarket Turbo or a different down pipe????

None of this matters? None of this slightly changes any engine/exhaust system geometry?

I'm not saying he should accept a "Shit Product".

And I'm NOT saying the OP did anything wrong, I'm just asking if he did his homework?
oh yes, have done my homework, lol. I am almost compulsive about crossing T's and dotting i's
 

Toby_Goodmk

Test Fit officianto
Here is what I am left with. As mentioned above in last nights posts, I farted around with this thing for a few hours to get it to this point. The drivers side Vband collector is fastened tight. The drivers header is tight. If I apply pressure with my hands it will move up and make (what appears to be positive contact 360*) of course this is to be determined when driving under boost if it still leaks out. My crossover is no longer welded together. I was able to pipe cut the weld loose just to eliminate the possibility of me making an error in the weld, but appears nothing with welding the crossover together (because it was leaking as well) could have caused this. Time will tell as soon as I get another Vband clamp.
 

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Toby_Goodmk

Test Fit officianto
I found old pictures where I was struggling with the crossover from day 1. You will picture. One where crossover was too wide from the beginning, even after bottoming out the slip joint. It shows if I allowed the slip joint bolt flanges to align up, and bottom out, where my Vband flanges rested. See pic.
 

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Toby_Goodmk

Test Fit officianto
This is the Vband I have been having selaing issues with and in question. WIll someone tell me if the metal stock that comes from the pipe itself is supposed to angle in this manner?
 

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No disintegrations

Well-Known Member
If they engage but don't sit square the easy fix is cut 90% through the pipes (leaving only a tab ) and then lightly tighten the clamps. your cuts will open up and show how much metal should be added/ subtracted. write down the new specs for these new pie cuts. Have a welder finish them up.
sadly they seem to have moved or shrunk during welding or were mocked up on a diff engine somehow.
 

No disintegrations

Well-Known Member
This is the Vband I have been having selaing issues with and in question. WIll someone tell me if the metal stock that comes from the pipe itself is supposed to angle in this manner?
pic is hard to see area in question, but should be square to pipe.

That could be the whole problem. if that was ground square is the rest of it also square?
 

Toby_Goodmk

Test Fit officianto
pic is hard to see area in question, but should be square to pipe.

That could be the whole problem. if that was ground square is the rest of it also square?

The pipe was de-burred, if you look closely at the top of it. So it appears the metal stock was not cut straight and when the Vband is welded to the stock it was welded straight. My question, is this metal stock being cut wrong or not. And does the left over metal stock help the band seal inside the "female" portion of the drivers header. The passenger side header and passenger has metal stock sticking up out as well, but there is equal amount of stock 360* around the flange.

Here is another pic, this one has a gasket laying on top of the flange. Maybe a better picture, so you can see where I am getting at.
 

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No disintegrations

Well-Known Member
If that high spot keeps it from seating then that's the whole problem. Can be ground down in small amounts until it plays nice with others.
 

Toby_Goodmk

Test Fit officianto
If that high spot keeps it from seating then that's the whole problem. Can be ground down in small amounts until it plays nice with others.

I think it's ok. , it doesnt stick up high enough to bottom out against it's mate. I think it would help in general if it were flat across and came up into the header mate to help with airflow and sealing, the air is not flowing as good as it could would be my opinion.

I guess this is the reason I like to do things on my own to make sure extra steps can be taken to insure issues do not arise.
 

Toby_Goodmk

Test Fit officianto
Mike's stuff is built to exact tolerances and made as close to the variance's the factory let slide back in the day. Each item is the same. It isn't his fault some GM union hack didn't square up and properly place the piece he was putting on the car correctly.

Let me ask all of you this......... What aftermarket piece have ANY of you put on your car without a little "nudge or wiggle" ?

Calling TurboTGuy

Did your crossover have a gap this wide when installing it? This is what I am faced with after every joint is fastened, headers tight, etc. I am not using subpar gaskets either, I am using what they supplied, as recommended. I left this joint to be last fastened, as it is the straightest most level, easy to get to joint to do final joining. If I nudge, to the slightest amount....this side of the cross over it will not line up even close to where it is now.

And to give further data. This was a virgin block, machined by Zimmerman and the block was decked. THe heads are champion irons, I am the first owner of them new. The head gaskets are cometic .060 fastened with ARP studs. I am using the supplied gasket pack (which have not blown and are quite nice!) I am using ARP header stainless steel studs on ALL contact points on the header.
 

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Toby_Goodmk

Test Fit officianto
I didn't know that a gasket was used between the flanges. I thought it seal with just the v band.

Well, TA sent them with the kit and it was advised that they be used.

Here is how tolerant, or less tolerant this system is, as this is what I have learned with trial and error. If I DIDNT use a gasket (.030 thick) the Vband was loose enough to turn the crossover clockwise and counter clockwise when completely tight. When I put the gasket in, the ability to move it stopped. So the system (or the band, I should say) is precise enough to need the gasket to apply enough outward pressure to make the Vband clamp seal. I have learned ALOT about the clamps used in this system, and how damn hard they are to get. Example, you cannot just get any Vband clamp when using this system. It is a .04" apex (clamping force area) clamp. This is what makes it different to ALL clamps that I have researched.
 

Gene Van Horn

Active Member
Is this a one piece crossover, my ta ss headers came with a two piece cross over pipe. Is this a new or upgraded style? Mine went on like nobodys bussiness, but like i said two piece crossover so lots of adjustment room.
 

TurboTGuy

Gray Beard Member
Calling TurboTGuy

Did your crossover have a gap this wide when installing it? This is what I am faced with after every joint is fastened, headers tight, etc. I am not using subpar gaskets either, I am using what they supplied, as recommended. I left this joint to be last fastened, as it is the straightest most level, easy to get to joint to do final joining. If I nudge, to the slightest amount....this side of the cross over it will not line up even close to where it is now.

And to give further data. This was a virgin block, machined by Zimmerman and the block was decked. THe heads are champion irons, I am the first owner of them new. The head gaskets are cometic .060 fastened with ARP studs. I am using the supplied gasket pack (which have not blown and are quite nice!) I am using ARP header stainless steel studs on ALL contact points on the header.

Gotta be honest with you, I didn't do the original install, Lou Czarnota did so I can't answer the question. I've since had them off and on twice with no real fighting them.

I'd have jumped in with a fix way back if I knew of one. That's why I called on some of the others to provide one.
 

Toby_Goodmk

Test Fit officianto
Is this a one piece crossover, my ta ss headers came with a two piece cross over pipe. Is this a new or upgraded style? Mine went on like nobodys bussiness, but like i said two piece crossover so lots of adjustment room.

This is a two piece, but due to the issues with alignment from day 1 the slip joint has been suspect. It was too long for one. Two, the bolt together flanges on the joint did not "clock" together, so I could not take advantage of bolting the slip together. Three, the slip joint leaked as well. So, I have had it welded, then cut the weld, and will weld it back up again once I can get a positive leak free Vband
 
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Gene Van Horn

Active Member
I can understand your frustration when spending that kind of money for a part,if i remember correctly they were 700.00 or 800.00. Mine just bolted to the header. Tightened headers, slipped the crossover together and tightened them a little at at a time, they seem to adjust themselves,clamped crossover and that was that. Perhaps you got a bad set, it would seem to me that flange on the crossover would be staight all the way around,not tilted. With those clamps you have everything has to be aligned perfectly. You seem like a good mechanic so my only suggestion would be to cut crossover, slip 3 or 4 inch splice over it and tighten both sides of crossover then weld splice in. Probably look like kinda sloppy but that wouldn't bother me.
 

Toby_Goodmk

Test Fit officianto
I can understand your frustration when spending that kind of money for a part,if i remember correctly they were 700.00 or 800.00. Mine just bolted to the header. Tightened headers, slipped the crossover together and tightened them a little at at a time, they seem to adjust themselves,clamped crossover and that was that. Perhaps you got a bad set, it would seem to me that flange on the crossover would be staight all the way around,not tilted. With those clamps you have everything has to be aligned perfectly. You seem like a good mechanic so my only suggestion would be to cut crossover, slip 3 or 4 inch splice over it and tighten both sides of crossover then weld splice in. Probably look like kinda sloppy but that wouldn't bother me.


I have some new clamps coming from Nick so I can 100% make sure I have as positive as I can get, contact. If this doesnt work, going to the Fab shop to get the crossover altered. And BTW, they were $1100 :eek:
 

Gene Van Horn

Active Member
Your rite, i payed 700.00 for the one side and crossover and 400.00 for the other side they out of stock,had to wait a month for the other one. As far as im concerned they are the best headers for our cars but it seems you are really having problems with yours. Like i said mine attached different, no v bands. Nick will fix you up hopefully, got to be patient with these pieces of crap, very frustrating at times as you can tell.
 
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