Noise pollution from race tracks is something that has been on the agenda for local councils for many years now. With the increase in activities at many circuits (coupled with the circuit owners not quite being as strict as they could) residents are becoming unhappy with the noise levels originating from the track.
The discussion about whether or not residents have the right to complain is for a whole other article, but the simple fact is that if they keep complaining then the councils will inevitably put more pressure on the circuit owners to further reduce their noise levels.
This is the reason why so many circuits are lowering their noise test limits on track days, and why in some cases they are facing the possibility of having to close up shop.
Because the noise test limits are being lowered, many riders are finding it increasingly difficult to pass the test at certain tracks.
There are however some things you can do to make your motorcycle quieter and get the noise level down to acceptable standards.
Unfortunately your options are fairly limited, and for most of them it means some sort of expense, but there are a few things you can do that should help knock some of those decibels off to keep the circuits, councils and residents happy.
A very popular option, and one that more and more riders are using to get their noise levels down.
Acousta-Fil is a product used to repack your motorcycle’s exhaust silencer. The sheets of PTX yarn are placed inside the silencer between the inner perforated tube and the silencer’s outer casing. It is designed to expand once it’s heated, and in doing so it fills all remaining space in the can, providing great silencing characteristics.
It is said to be very effective for motorcycle noise levels, with some riders claiming it can knock off 3db+ depending on the bike and silencer it’s being used on.
Acousta-Fil is meant to replace the existing packing inside the exhaust (if there is any) between the inner tube and outer casing.
Most riders will already have a baffle for their silencer, and if you do and you haven’t fitted it then this is obviously going to be the easiest and cheapest way to reduce the noise level of your exhaust.
Some riders however won’t have a baffle as it may well have been removed by the previous owner and lost or given away. If that’s the case then I would recommend you buy another.
You can buy one specific to the brand and model of your end can, or you can buy a universal baffle that will also do a good job of lowering your decibel reading.
This will be the most expensive option – and I would guess the one that riders would want to avoid – but if you have a stubby end can then there’s only so much you can do to keep it quiet.
If you have an end can on the shorter side and you can’t seem to get your level down to an acceptable standard then I’m afraid buying a new, longer silencer is your next port of call. This will almost undoubtedly lower the noise level.
It’s worth looking around at what people are saying about the different brands of end can, because some manufacturer’s silencers will be quieter than others and vice versa. Yoshimura full length cans are said to be among the quietest.
In an ideal world we wouldn’t have to worry about noise levels, but unfortunately for us this isn’t the case. Councils are slowly grabbing the circuit owners by the wedding vegetables, which means that noise limits are only going to get lower.
If you’re struggling to reduce your motorcycle’s noise then try some of the above methods. This, I would like to think, will have you passing the noise test with ease and in turn keep councils and locals happy.
Photo by AlchemyPa
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