Had an interesting evening. In order to put in the headers I had to remove the engine mount on the driver's side. Did that; headers went in from underneath surprisingly easy. They were a little tight fitting on the studs but I attribute that to the extra thickness of the ceramic coating in the holes. Got 7 of the 8 nuts on and tightened down. The last one which is under the thermostat housing and nearly impossible to see proves impossible to put on. The stud sticks out just far enough that there isn't enough room between the header wall and the end of the stud to put even the washer on, much less the nut. Since the header has a nice thick, solid flange all the way across I decide to try leaving that one nut off for now and see if there's any exhaust leakage.
Wasn't happy about that but I go to reinstall the motor mount and it won't go back in; the headers are just a bit too close to the mounting studs and won't let the motor mount go back into place. It quickly becomes obvious I'm going to have to loosen the headers I just loctited on and move them out far enough for the motor mount to fit. At this point I've begun using colorful metaphors.
So I loosen the headers, move them outward a bit, motor mount goes into place. I tighten everything back up thinking "finally" and attach the muffler to the side of the trans. I go under the car, put the connecting pipe into the headers which fits fine, get out from under the car and notice there's absolutely no way that pipe is going to fit into the muffler. Not only is it several inches too long but the pipe coming out of the muffler is at the wrong angle; it wouldn't even line up if the connecting pipe was the right length. That was it for me for the evening.
So tomorrow I'll have to take the muffler and connecting pipe to a local muffler shop, have them cut the connecting pipe to the correct length (I marked it with a pencil); cut the pipe off the end of the muffler and re-weld it facing the correct angle. This of course is going to ruin the nice ceramic coating on the end of the muffler. I'll have to take it to the shop that did it and see if it's possible to re-coat just that end; if not....or if they're going to charge too much... oh well. I'll just have to paint it a gray engine paint.
What I expected to be a simple bolt-on installation turned out to be anything but that. I wish companies would do a better job of checking fitment before sending things out! As a result of all the extra time I had to spend, I didn't get the radius arm installed. Hopefully tomorrow the exhaust system drama will be easy to resolve and I can get the rear suspension back together.
Here's a few pics of the evening's events.
The headers finally installed after all the install drama.
Overall engine compartment with headers and muffler installed (I've been trying to clean as I go to help get the engine bay looking good.)
Mismatch between connecting pipe coming from headers and the pipe on the end of the muffler.