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Exhaust, SET

How to change your pipe, and remove the SET valve.

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Introduction Choices Sounds SET valve Installation Notes on '03 and '05 Tboubleshooting


before after

The stock exhaust has a nice sound, and is certainly quiet enough to pass at state inspection time. But all Gixxer guys know that you can gain 3 to 5 horsepower by simply changing out that stock exhaust can for an aftermarket exhaust system that allows better free flow of exhaust from the engine. Aside from the TRE, changing your exhaust with a "slip-on" replacement is the next easiest and the next most cost-effective way to improve your ride.

Aside from performance and sound, the final reason we like to change the exhaust is for looks. That's up to your personal opinion, but I really don't dig that "low mount" look of the stock exhaust, with all that space between the undertail and the can. You get a much better look with either a simple "high mount" exhaust system (which will bend the tailpipe up toward the undertail with a single "can") or in my case the Devil Shotgun system, as you see.

Like everything on my web pages, doing this requires no expertise at all, and extremely little in the way of tools or time. So read on , and then start looking for your own aftermarket exhuast system.

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How to choose

First, you have to decide whether you want a full system or a slip-on.

"Full system"
the entire exhaust system is replaced, from the connection to the engine to the end of the tail pipe. This means new headpipes, the part that connects to the engine. These can be difficult to fit and connect properly. With a new "full" system, you might get 10 - 15 horsepower gain.
only the muffler (the "can" as we call it) is replaced, including a section of pipe about 2 to 3 feet in front of the can. The connections are very easy, taking only minutes. The gains in horsepower are usually in the 3 - 5 range.

Unless you're a racer, willing to spend $1000 - $1500 to get 10 extra horspower, don't think any further about a full system. Installing a full system is very difficult by yourself, and is better accomplished if you have a buddy to help you fit and bolt all the pieces together.

if you get a slip-on replacement system as I did, the installation takes only a few minutes, and is very easy to do all by yourself. The cost is also much lower - the $500 range.

Brand Names

There are many more, but these are three of the most popular for you to look into.

Most popular: Yoshimura. yoshi

It's not worth arguing about which system will give you 1/10th of a horspower advantage over the other system. Likewise you'll find the weight differences between brands are minimal, and just not important unless you have serious racing ambitions. For all but professional racers, the choice is going to come down to four factors:

  1. Looks
  2. Sound
  3. Price
  4. Passenger Foot Pegs

That last point is important if ever plan on using the bike to attract the ladies. Most exhaust systems will sacrifce your passenger foot pegs. For me this was an absolute dealbreaker, and I finally found the Devil system, which allowed me to keep those pegs intact.

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Below are some sound files of the Devil Slip-on system on my 02 GSXR 1000. Of course these were just made by me in the garage, at idle,so they cannot convey the awesome display of sound and power that are yours while doing 12,000 rpms on one wheel with the pipes SCREAMING behind you!!! But they'll give you some sense of the good low grumble that you feel at the stop lights.

Devil Shotgun - 218kb
Devil Shotgun - 136kb
Taz's web page - bike sounds - another place to here exhaust sounds.

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The SET Valve

This is a valve in your exhaust pipe which remains partially closed at low rpms. It acts to increase resistance to the flow of exhaust, thereby increasing "backpressure" into the engine. It turns out this is necessary to decrease a serious dip in torque that occurs at 3500 - 5000 rpm. You may see this gadget called the SET valve or the EXCV. Other motorcycle manufacturers, such as Honda, have similar gadgets to increase their performance at low revs. You should not remove the SET valve unless you have a good reason to do so, such as the installation of your aftermarket exhaust system.

Do not remove the SET valve if you are keeping your stock system.

Read more about the SET valve system on Suzuki and other sportbikes.

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There are really no special instructions to give you here. This is a straight-forward wrench job. Just unhook the stock pipe from the position immediately below the rider's footpeg (not the passenger's). Unbolt the old pipe and connect the new one. Your exhaust system manufacturer will supply you with a diagram if there is anything else special to consider. In the case of the Devil system, a nice passenger footpeg adapter is included so that you can retain your passenger pegs.

You'll have to remove the SET valve and SET servo assembly. It's ok just to cut the cables that connect to your old muffler pipe, then remove the whole black box servo unit, and remaining cables, and throw it away.

The three basic steps to adding your slip-on pipe are listed below:

set diagram

1. Take off the old pipe

-- the SET valve (labelled "EXCV" in the diagram) is inside the pipe- just infront of where your right foot pedal. You can just cut the cables that you'll find. If you don't cut them you can't get the old pipe off. Then trace the cables back and you'll see the motor they came from -- that's the EXCVA, commonly called the "SET servo motor". This is the little motor that controls how far the SET valve opens or closes, depending on your rpms. Just unbolt that little motor from the frame because it's now useless. Throw it away. Put your new pipes on.

In the diagram at right, you are sitting inside the frame of the bike, looking out at the inside aspect of the right side of the bike frame. The SET servo motor is labelled "EXCVA" in this diagram. Take it off and throw it and the cables away.

short wires

2. Cut off 2-wire connector and "short" wires:

Find the two wire harnesses that lead over to the SET servo. One has three wires connected to a white plastic connector -- Just unplug this one and leave it alone. The colors of the three wires should be Y, R, and B/Br.

You will notice another plastic connector that has only 2 wires. Those wires are colored R/B and B/R. Cut off the white plastic connector and throw it away. Now twist those two wires together. Don't be afraid to twist these together - this is absolutely correct, and will not hurt your bike. If you do not do this, the bike will have a C46 error code, and run in error mode, so make sure you do not forget this step. Then cover the twisted, connected wires with electrical tape.

It is worthwhile stressing something here. Those two wires that used to go to the EXCVA (also known as the SET servo motor) are colored R/B and B/R. What is their function?

These are the power wires for the servo motor that move the butterfly. There is very little resistance to the motor windings, so that the net effect of "shorting them" together is almost the same as still having the servo motor attached. The ECU wants to see that there is still a "connection" at the end of the R/B wire. Shorting these two together will satisfy the ECM. There will be no "short" damage to the ECM from this connection, since this is a current limited signal.

These wires are electrically continuous within the EXCVA, while it is installed. The other ends of these wires go nowhere except straight back to the ECM. So when you throw away the EXCVA, these wires have now LOST continuity, producing an ERROR situation.

If you do NOT remember to short these together when you've removed the EXCVA, the ECM will be a bit annoyed. It will send you an "FI" message on your instrument cluster, C46, to be exact. This message is trying to tell you that "Hey -- I cannot detect the EXCVA anymore, what's wrong?" Well, you took it out and threw it away -- that's what's wrong. So to get rid of this FI message, twist the wires together as shown. It's worthwhile soldering the wires together while you're there.

Read more about FI errors

3. Go to the ECM to disconnect the SET feedback wire.

black-brown wire

You'll need to remove the black/brown wire from the ECM. Removing this black/brown wire from the ECM input will prevent that "FI" warning message from appearing in your instrument panel. It will not affect the function of the bike in any other way.

Be careful NOT to disconnect the black/brown wire in the MIDDLE of the connector. The one you want is in the upper left hand corner of the connector, as you face the rear of the bike. It's original position is indicated by the orange arrow.

After you have removed this wire, you will have left a a hole in the top of the ECM connector where this wire used to be. It's a good idea to plug that hole with some silicone sealant to prevent water from entering. You could also just CUT the brow/black wire, to allow the cut remnant to plug the hole.

white button

Some guys just cut the B/Br wire, then tape off the cut ends. If you want to pull the wire cleanly out of the ECM it is a bit difficult. You'll have to push in this little white button, shown in the photo at right. It will click, meaning it is open. Then you can easily pull out the B/Br wire, but be sure you don't loosen any other connections while that tab is open ! Then click the white button OUT again. You do this by pushing IN from the opposite side.

shotgun notes

Actually mounting the Devil half-system couldn't be easier. Literally just slide it into place. I used the stock Suzuki pipe clamp at the junction to secure the Devil pipe in place (see the lower yellow arrow), then just bolt on the support bracket (top arrow), and you're done!

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Notes on the 2003 and newer Gixxers

There really are no important changes for the '03 1000. The wiring diagram of that bike is really unchanged, and the color codes are the same, so you will still be looking for a B/Br wire to remove from the ECM in order to eliminate that FI error. But the location of the wire in the ECM has changed. The pictures below should show you where to find it if you've got the fancy new '03. Thanks to a cool rider named bdidihey banana(Brian from for supplying these pictures! Brian informs me that the ECM for the '03 gixxer is all new : and now the Gixx uses a 32-bit computer instead of a 16-bit computer. Fancy, Fancy... wtf

set03 set03b set03c

The picture at right shows the B/Br wire removed from the right ECM plug (referring to the RIGHT side as you are facing FRONT). The red arrow points to it's original location before it was taken out.

Notes on the '05 GSXR


For the best instructions on finding that Black/brown wire on the 2005 GSXR, see the yoshimura instructions available at JSD products.

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Now my bike won't start!

It's pretty unusual to have a starting problem after you install an exhaust system, since the exhaust really has nothing at all to do with creating a simple spark and exploding fuel. The exception is on the GSXR-1000, because of the wiring issues noted above.

First, be sure that you correctly stripped, twisted and taped the R/B and the B/R wires, as shown in the photos above. You may want to solder them, because if they come undone, your bike will have no ignition at all, and you'll just see "CHEC" in the intrument panel when you turn the bike on. Normally these two wires are continuous inside the EXCVA itself (also known as the SET servo motor). When you rip out the EXCVA and throw it away, these two have lost their connection, so that you'll have to twist them together or the bike won't start.

Forgetting to remove the brown/black wire at the ECM will not prevent the bike from starting. It will only cause you to have that annoying "FI" message on your instrument panel. To get rid of it, pull out the Br/B wire as shown in the photos above.

Other things to consider are listed below, and they are all quite embarassing. But we've all done these things, especially at 3am, after working on the bike all night, and maybe having one too many beers in the garage. So consider these before you kick the dog, set the bike aflame, or just take a shotgun to the gixxer while gushing forth a foreign language consisting only of four letter words.

  1. Make sure your kill switch is set to RUN
  2. Make sure you don't have the bike in gear with the kickstand down.
  3. Did you plug both ECM plugs back into the ECM?
  4. Make sure you've unplugged the 3-wire connector that goes to the SET valve.
  5. Did you disconnect your power commander while doing this? Remember to plug it back in to the ground terminal of the battery.
  6. Check on the Brown/Black wire removal from ECM - (as mentioned above, forgetting this would not prevent the bike from starting, though)
  7. Securely twist, solder and tape the R/B and B/R wires together (see above). If you've forgotten to do this, this WILL prevent the bike from starting.

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