BUB Enterprises has been making noise in the aftermarket exhaust world since the late ‘70s and enters this contest with its BUB 7 Slip-On Muffler Set ($441). This bolt-on exhaust features many of the same high-end features of the competition with the most reasonable price tag.
The BUB pipes are similar in appearance to the Bassani units, with its chrome finish and cylindrical profile. Fit-and-finish also rated high courtesy of its clean welds and mirror-like finish. It was ranked second in this category and in “Appearance” due to the Bassani’s more elaborate end cap design.
Like the rest of the pipes (with exception of the Akrapovic) BUB chooses to utilize a one-piece design that does not make use of the stock cross-over tube. This means that the mufflers are a quick install and second to only the Screamin’ Eagles in terms of ease. Weight-wise the BUB’s were the lightest components in this shootout weighing two ounces less than its chief rival, Bassani (10 pounds 2.6 ounces).
Since the pipes utilize a large diameter and open baffle they are really loud at all rpm. In fact, it almost felt like the bike didn’t have an exhaust as the engine was quick to rev and tied the Bassani’s for title to emitting the highest sound decibel reading (87 dB idle, 108 dB at 2950 rpm). Although it measured identically on the street, the BUB pipes were even more obnoxious sounding than the Bassani’s almost to the point of deafening (BUB also offers a sound reducing baffle as an option for about $95).
A trip to the dyno revealed the obnoxious BUB pipes generate some serious power, recording the second-highest horsepower figure. Although power doesn’t start off as strong as some of the other brands, they get the engine spinning upwards of 4000 rpm and deliver some serious muscle with 67.52 horses available as the rev limiter shuts combustion down at 5900 revs. Peak torque on the other hand wasn’t as impressive with it churning out the fourth best score (69.59 lb-ft @ 4600 rpm) behind the Vance & Hines, Screamin’ Eagles and Bassani mufflers.
Based on its price you would assume the BUB pipes wouldn’t be able to match the quality, fit and performance of some of the other top brands. But this couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, when the points were tallied the BUB pipes slotted in the runner up spot via consistent scores in almost every category. While still too loud for our tastes, if you’re up for creating a ruckus without straining your wallet, you can’t go wrong with this exhaust.
“These pipes sound the loudest bar none. They have a very hollow roar and feel and sound like straight pipes. The engine revs much quicker now and acceleration performance has improved too. These are the pipes that make folks hate motorcycles because they are so dang loud. Jetting was okay on the throttle but it still backfired when you were slowing down. I like the performance these pipes bring to the table but they are way too loud.”
Harley-Davidson Sportster Exhaust Shootout
Akrapovic Slip-On Mufflers Comparison Review
Screamin’ Eagle Slip-On Comparison Review
BUB 7 Slip-On Muffler Set Comparison Review
Vance & Hines Slip-On Comparison Review
Bassani Firepower Series Slip-On Comparison Review