dB Dawg

MotorcycleUSA Staff | July 6, 2007
The dB Dawg universal insert is a quick way to cut down some unwanted decibels without modifying your bike.
The dB Dawg universal insert is a quick way to cut down some unwanted decibels without modifying your bike.

The Score

If for some reason you haven’t heard someone bitching and moaning about how loud these modern 4-strokes are, then it’s probably because the thunderous output has made you deaf. Noise is fast becoming the leading problem for motorcycle enthusiasts who, in our own stupidity, refuse to back down on the decibels. Aftermarket exhaust companies are slowly starting to come around, and consumers are as well, but it seems as though we’re not taking notice nearly as much as the irritated non-enthusiasts. Ignition Products is trying to make it easier for riders to manage their noise output with a simple creation called the dB Dawg.

The Scoop

The dB Dawg is a about as simple of a device as you could hope for. The muffler insert is available in three different universal sizes depending on the diameter of your exhaust (1.31-1.5 inches, 1.5-1.75 in., and 1.75-2.0 in.) Held in place by a pair of set screws, the Dawg is a simple and fast installation. We’ve got an old WR426 that belongs to a staff member and it loiters around the shop hoping to get selected for some form of riding assignment. It actually gets used quite frequently as a spare machine to carry our camera and video men as we conduct our testing. Being six years old, the WR has seen better days, especially the exhaust, which desperately needs new packing. But before we pulled it all apart, we figured it would be the perfect bike to test one of the Dawgs on. We ordered one up and were ready to ride with it in place in less than five minutes.

Installing the Dawg only took a few minutes. The key is making sure you order the right size to fit your muffler. Each piece only fits a certain range of diameters.
Installing the Dawg only took a few minutes. The key is making sure you order the right size to fit your muffler. Each piece only fits a certain range of diameters.

A quick note about installation – make sure to extend the set screws as much as humanly possible with your fingers, and when they are snug, then cram the Dawg into the muffler. If you try to tighten the recessed Allen bolt entirely with the included wrench, you’ll be there forever because it only cranks about 1/16 of a turn each time. Once it was installed, the anodized blue piece added a little sparkle to the WR’s rear end. It also took away some of the horrendous noise which it usually spits forth. It originally blew 101 dB on our meter but that dropped to 97 dB immediately with the Dawg inserted. The website claims up to 10 decibels so we were hoping for a little more, but four was enough to gain us entry to local trail rides that were previously out of spec.

On the trail, we didn’t really notice any ill affects in terms of performance. The quieter exhaust note was definitely noticeable but the grunty 426 was just as chug-happy as ever according to our testers.

The Sentence

The universal applications can be had for $30 and Ignition Products makes some custom fit Dawgs that are pricier, but it’s a small fee for a quick reduction in noise compared to the alternative of buying a new muffler. We’d like to see exhaust manufacturers crank down on the noise levels, but until that happens, the dB Dawg is an easy way to pass sound emissions previously unreachable with your machine. This product is great for people who take their MX bikes off-road for casual rides or GP-style races.

Cranking down these set screws will take a long time if you don t adjust them mostly by hand before inserting the dB Dawg. We never had any trouble with the screws coming loose  but we think this could be a problem area over time.
Cranking down these set screws will take a long time if you don’t adjust them mostly by hand before inserting the dB Dawg. We never had any trouble with the screws coming loose, but we think this could be a problem area over time.

We only have two areas of concern, the first of which is that this product won’t work with some spark arrestors. The shaft of ours stuck 2.5 inches down into the muffler, so if you have a spark arrestor that is in the end cap, then it will likely cause a problem. Secondly, though we never had a problem with the set screws coming loose, we just don’t trust them entirely considering how much vibration and abuse is transmitted to the muffler. Ignition Products recommends safety-wiring the Dawg in case it comes out, and so do we. Overall we were satisfied with the performance of such a simple, but important, piece of equipment.

Product: Universal dB Dawg

Color Options: Blue, Red, Black (depends on size of application)

Sizes: 1.31-1.5 inches, 1.5-1.75 in., and 1.75-2.0 in. Custom sizes are becoming available, check website for specific applications.

MSRP: $30

Find out More: www.ignitionproducts.com

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MotorcycleUSA Staff