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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I found very little mention about this downpipe so decided a new thread is worthwhile. I purchased a "PLM" downpipe off of eBay a few weeks ago, best guess is it may be a Milltek knock off. Regardless, it's construction seemed quite different than the pictures still available in the 199.99 eBay downpipe thread, so I figured I'd do my own little write up. I ended up submitting a Best Offer on one listed at $179.99 + $20 shipping and got it for $168 + $20. If it is the same one, sorry. Apparently PLM stands for Private Label Manufacturing.

plm.dp-focus_d.jpg plm.dp-focus2_d.jpg plm.dp-focus3_d.jpg plm.dp-focus4_d.jpg plm.dp-focus5_d.jpg s-l500 (1).jpg s-l500 (2).jpg s-l500.jpg

Pros:
  • price is significantly less than other new catless 3" downpies
  • surprising quality and welds compared to what I am used to receiving from eBay China stuff
  • found a USA seller/quick ship
  • came with all new bolts, gaskets, and spark-plug defouler (for those that want to turn off code P0420 that way and not a tune
  • I have not had catback or any other fitment issues anyone else mentioned having, absolutely flawless fitment
  • two piece design is ingenious and makes installation and final fitment a breeze
  • got Stratified tune for it, no issues
  • very quiet with stock CBE
  • comes with two flanges, one for 2.5" and one for 3"...by being on the downpipe side, this saves you from having to weld the adapter (like other kits, some people do not have welders at home)
  • extra bung for wideband, plug included
  • my particular eBay vendor click2buyhere was very fast with the two technical questions I had after purchasing
  • this plus going back to a stock CBE yielded a better WOT sound, ultra-quiet, and eliminated all the drone my stock downpipe + FlowMaster CBE had. The ultra quiet (maybe even TOO quiet) is really the purpose of my switching this, wife hated the drone ~ 75 mph and people were seeing no restriction on the dyno with the stock CBE and 3” catless DP.
  • able to purchase through eBay, multiple layers of protection as the buyer from Paypal, credit card company, etc. in case I got a dud

Cons:
  • I can't figure out how to connect the downpipe brace (two bracket flange). my car's previous owner had a DEPO downpipe so maybe he unbolted/lost/deleted something. I will also be adding a RMM, may be a factor
  • very, very rarely clunk on accel...I am researching what it is trial and error and will post if I find something...it is not the two long hanger rods others have mentioned hitting the subframe
  • I can't be cool and list expensive name brand mods in my signature
  • no instructions, really didn't need them
  • would like to see high temp exhaust RTV included in anything with a exhaust clamp or V band
  • exhaust smell due to catless. I have found driving very grandma for the last few miles of a trip and shutting off the ignition ASAP after getting into the parking space helps a lot

https://www.jhpusa.com/store/pc/viewPrd.asp?idproduct=37800&idcategory=0

PLM TURBO DOWNPIPE FORD FOCUS 2013 2014 2015 ST SS MK3 2.5 3.0 PLM | eBay

Overall I am 9.5/10 happy with this purchase. Came fast, appears very high quality, well thought out. I chose to put RTV exhaust on the v band on the turbo and between the clamp and the end section once I got fitment where I wanted it (and on the downpipe - CBE gasket). I reused the stock downpipe - CBE multi layer steel gasket and the two bolts. I chose to tune out P0420 instead of use the defouler. I still need to figure out the tiny intermittent clunk and the brace issue. Car runs like a top now after the tune, fitment is amazing with the two piece design, install was a breeze even without instructions. I'd budget 2 hours for a beginner working slowly on your back jack/jackstands. I am running all stock exhaust hangers without issue.
I am currently running the 2.5” flange to the stock CBE. My next modification will be to remake the very short front ~12” section before the stock resonator into a Y pipe. I will switch to the 3” flange (I already cut the flange off and 3” vbanded it while I wait cutout arrival) and run 3” to the Y, then an electric or wastegate (vacuum) cutout I have not chose yet. The other side of the Y will remain stock 2.25” to the resonator and rest of the CBE. When I re-installed the stock CBE, I was using one that was cut off the car so I cleaned up the cut (where the CJ Pony Parts location is in their how-to) and added a 2.25” v-band. This will allow me to take the CBE on/off the car in the future as I see fit without cutting (and v-bands always assist in fitment/tip alignment/etc). I have a few pictures they are not very interesting.

Imgur: The most awesome images on the Internet <--- CLICK LINK SIX PICTURES...YOU SUCK PHOTOBUCKET!!!

Shortly after this shot is when I cut that 3" end off to get ready to weld the V-band on it. I noticed it is TIG welded both INSIDE and OUT. Pretty high quality compared to what I've seen from other eBay stuff. The flanges are thick but the stainless is a bit on the thin side (I weld really, really hot settings) so I'm sure that's where the eBay savings comes in thinner tubing but certainly nothing thin enough I'm worried about. Aluminum/silver paint at joints and welds is a trick I learned years ago, if you develop a leak it's pretty obvious because the soot is black.

Anyone with tips on the brace issue, a sweet exhaust cutout switch to mount in the interior, or a sweet location to do so I’d appreciate your input. As it is now I am trying to search for an exploded parts diagram view of the stock downpipe area to see if I can figure out what I am missing.
 
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I got mine installed last week, joining the downpipe to either of the 2 adapters included was a pain in the behind, do this outside before installing the downpipe on the turbo, joining fitment is very tight, I had to dremel the adapters and made new cuts to allow the material to expand a little.................. I did get a weird vibration and clank noise sometimes when hard shifting (I still have the stock RMM) , the downpipe hangers "ends" DON'T hit the frame of the car, but the hanger horizontal surface area do hit the subframe under torque, I have a 1/4" clearance from the hanger and subframe, I cut a piece of my old car protane motor mount "rubber" and put in between the hangers and subframe and it fixed everything. I still have stock resonator and muffler and I saw improvements, you can hear the turbo spooling sound with the windows down, its very quiet with the stock resonator and muffler, but that's how I like it...........Sleeper :D
I paid $160 + $20 on ebay "Best offer".
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I got mine installed last week, joining the downpipe to either of the 2 adapters included was a pain in the behind, do this outside before installing the downpipe on the turbo, joining fitment is very tight, I had to dremel the adapters and made new cuts to allow the material to expand a little.................. I did get a weird vibration and clank noise sometimes when hard shifting (I still have the stock RMM) , the downpipe hangers "ends" DON'T hit the frame of the car, but the hanger horizontal surface area do hit the subframe under torque, I have a 1/4" clearance from the hanger and subframe, I cut a piece of my old car protane motor mount "rubber" and put in between the hangers and subframe and it fixed everything. I still have stock resonator and muffler and I saw improvements, you can hear the turbo spooling sound with the windows down, its very quiet with the stock resonator and muffler, but that's how I like it...........Sleeper :D
I paid $160 + $20 on ebay "Best offer".
oooh even better than I did on price negotiation. I also had a tight fitment on that piece, but I like that, it means it will seal up well. Nothing I haven't dealt with as a mechanic every day on the job, I used a dead blow hammer and block of wood on the flange...a couple love taps and it slid right on then went on/off with ease, just needed to be expanded a tad. by downpipe hangar "ends" we are both talking about the two "antenna" ends that go into the stock hangar, right? I'm trying to envision what you mean by horizontal surface area so next time I'm under there I can check for witness marks of rubbing. yes, way way more turbo noises now, but in such a good quiet way - same exhaust set up as you.

were you able to mount the "brace" that two bolt section? I guess I'm missing a piece of my car.
 

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Yes the hanger "ends" are the tips marked in blue in the picture, I have like 1/2" of clearance from the body of the car, all depends is how deep you put the adapter in/out, that clearance will change. but I have very little clearance on the horizontal hanger "tube" marked in red, it will look horizontal when installed lol. one of the hanger tubes hits the subframe bar when the engine moves back due to torque and you hear a vibration noise and a rattle. it went away when I put the protane insulation piece, but I know it's still hitting so that's something I will change later on. The 3" adapter hanger tubes are soldered differently, they might not hit at all, but I don't have a 3" exhaust so.

At first I didn't install the "brace" because I confused a installation video and they said it was not need it, but that was if you put a bigger turbo etc. I put it back 2 days after using the smaller screws that came with the downpipe.

Green line is the subframe bar
red is where I get contact
Blue are the hanger "ends" no problem there.
Untitled-1.jpg

I will try to take a pic of the actual piece that I put in a few minutes
 

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I just realized I didn't enter the adapter all the way in even though I hammered in place lol, but the way it's it gives me lots of clearance on the "ends"/tips of the hangers. You will see the black protane "rubber" attached with zipties that I added to eliminate the vibration and sound. I plan to leave it like that until I change to a 3" exhaust and then fix everything like it should, so far works great.


Untitled-2.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
1320 pipe is about the same price and they don't clamp their pipe together. 1320 is a really nice pipe. I have installed two of them and both felt really well made

somethings just aren't worth pinching pennies over.
My overall point was that the clamp-together design I am saying is a huge benefit, not a problem. Of course, any time you purchase a piece with more adjustable parameters, it's going to require more work in the long run (think about upgrading stock springs/shocks/top hats/sway bars to double adjustable coilovers, camber/caster plates, and two position swaybars with heim joint endlinks). Between the adjust ability you have in rotating it and slipping it in and out plus the v-band on the turbo you now have adjust ability in 3 axis. I would personally prefer to have a two piece downpipe like this one as opposed to say a Cobb downpipe that is all one welded piece because all cars are slightly different and you have less adjustment with the one-piece design and you are just praying it fits perfect the first time. I also think this is a superior design as opposed to the downpipes that are one piece but come with an extra catback flange for 3" because that MUST be welded on and not many people have welders at home, let alone SS welding capabilities and confidence = trip to welder and $$$.

Thanks for the video cdesigns, explained it very well. Can you get up in there further so I can see what I'm missing as far as this "brace" goes? Thanks!
 

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My overall point was that the clamp-together design I am saying is a huge benefit, not a problem. Of course, any time you purchase a piece with more adjustable parameters, it's going to require more work in the long run (think about upgrading stock springs/shocks/top hats/sway bars to double adjustable coilovers, camber/caster plates, and two position swaybars with heim joint endlinks). Between the adjust ability you have in rotating it and slipping it in and out plus the v-band on the turbo you now have adjust ability in 3 axis. I would personally prefer to have a two piece downpipe like this one as opposed to say a Cobb downpipe that is all one welded piece because all cars are slightly different and you have less adjustment with the one-piece design and you are just praying it fits perfect the first time. I also think this is a superior design as opposed to the downpipes that are one piece but come with an extra catback flange for 3" because that MUST be welded on and not many people have welders at home, let alone SS welding capabilities and confidence = trip to welder and $$$.

Thanks for the video cdesigns, explained it very well. Can you get up in there further so I can see what I'm missing as far as this "brace" goes? Thanks!
You are missing the dreaded "brillo pad" mount. Its this awkward series of brackets that bolt around the rear motor mount. They are a total pain in the ass, and the main reason I went with a DP that did not utilize the front mount.

https://www.tascaparts.com/auto-par...ne/exhaust-system-cat/exhaust-components-scat

parts 6, 7, 8, 9.

If you want them, I may still have them kicking around.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
You are missing the dreaded "brillo pad" mount. Its this awkward series of brackets that bolt around the rear motor mount. They are a total pain in the ass, and the main reason I went with a DP that did not utilize the front mount.

https://www.tascaparts.com/auto-par...ne/exhaust-system-cat/exhaust-components-scat

parts 6, 7, 8, 9.

If you want them, I may still have them kicking around.
Thanks for the info, and if you still do, I would like to try and fit them. Probably in person I'll say this is stupid and toss them, but I'd at least like to visualize what awesome factory design (can you hear the eyes rolling?) I am missing out on.
Haven't had a clunk since that one or two times, but also haven't put a RMM in yet. I'm giving it some miles to make some witness rub marks if it's going to make them, I'll install the "brace," RMM, and trim hanger rods/add prothane pads all in one shot next time I am down there. I still need a half day to final fit/cut/weld the front of catback (cutout) section I have sitting on my bench and re-install the chinsey under-engine cosmetic tray.
 
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