Stainless steel exhaust studs - are they a good idea?

I have my engine out at the moment and some of the exhaust studs are looking a bit rough so I intend to replace them. Some of the VW shops
in the UK sell stainless steel exhaust studs - I just wanted to see if anyone had any thoughts on these before I go ahead and swap all mine over.
Thanks
Will
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I've never used stainless steel studs myself. But I do know that whatever you use in terms of threaded fasteners, you need to apply a generous amount of anti-seize compound to the threads before you assemble anything. It will make your life much easier in the future.
Chris
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Stainless will gall and seize if you don't use anti-seize. I'm not sure what the benefit of SST studs would be. Andy

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Chris,s suggestion that anti-seize should be used is one of those fundamental truths that should be etched in stone and hung on the garage wall. Innumerable barked knuckles and obscenities bear testament.! John
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I would pass on the stainless studs because they can gall and freeze and also not reach the recommended torque specifications. You would have to use anti-seize on them just as you should with high-carbon steel, and you are still left with a questionable installation with stainless.
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I agree with John, and the new Street Rodder Magazine has an article with Doc Hammett, owner (along with the lovely Linda) of Totally Stainless. Along with other pearls of wisdom (such as you CAN re-use Nylock nuts, up to a point) he says the same thing as John about not reaching proper torque specs, in some applications. I can also, from first hand experience ($$$$) what happens when you have polished stainless spring perches, for an early Ford front end, and even in mock-up stage, with the nuts just on snug,what will happen if you don't use anti-sieze... you end up taking them off with a torch. Ouch, lesson learned.
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I only use copper or brass(my first choice) nuts on standard steel studs... no problems removing them...
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And that works...provided you have the hardware.
For everyone else, a generous swab of anti-seize(and don't be shy about it...) on the exhaust parts will ensure you can take it apart down the road without breaking the studs off and then pitching a fit when you have to buy a heli-coil kit to fix the mess.....
Good luck with it.
Chris
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it's all in what works for folks and what their preference is..... Years ago I bought some copper exhaust nuts at the same time I bought copper exhaust gaskets... since then I went to brass nuts that are a smaller size than the stock nuts... you can buy them at most vw retailers, or do as I did, I spent the five bucks the anti-seize would have cost me on 100 brass nuts (11mm wrench size and taller than the steel stockers).....
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Joey Tribiani wrote:

Like these? http://www.geneberg.com/product_info.php?cPathE0_2938&products_id 10
Or these? Bag of 100 for $5.30, zinc plated, 8mm, Also, self-locking, w/ built-in washer, $0.55/ea. http://www.germanautoparts.com/Hardware/Nuts/Nuts
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yep, like the berg ones... also those copper pinch lockers... I prefer the brass...
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If I could find stainless studs for my entire exhaust system with brass nuts I would use them.
Back in my "youth" I would snap header collector bolts trying to remove rusted nuts. The temp variations and exposure under the car caused steel nuts to rust.
One day and old-time racer suggested fine-threaded stainless bolts with brass nuts along with lock washers. The stainless would not rust and the brass nuts would expand at a different rate than the stainless preventing them from bonding together. Warm up the motor just a little and the brass nuts would expand faster than the stainless bolts they held onto making removals easy. The split lock washers and fine thread prevented them from vibrating loose. And I didn't even need to use anti-sieze!
Not practical for all applications, but great when you "uncapped" your headers every weekend !
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In article

IMHO, lock washers are a no-no for exhaust port fasteners and a super bad idea for head bolts or any critical part that must have proper torque.
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Thanks for all the advice. I think Ill experiment by replacing the 2 most corroded of my studs will S/S ones but use anti-seize and brass nuts on all the exhaust studs.
Can I just clarify that by anti-seize we are talking about copper grease (Copaslip) or is there something better?
Thanks
Will
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On 03/11/2010 08:15 AM, Bluedc wrote:

Far more important than that is to use anti-seize and also copper or brass nuts, not steel.
nate
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