Recently we've taken a look at header coatings and even showed you a no-buck way to rust-proof your mild steel headers. So we thought it was only appropriate to hit the trifecta and take an in-depth look at a third option for protecting your headers and controlling heat: header wraps.
Header wraps are definitely old-school, and honestly, you don't see them on race cars too often any more. But Design Engineering Inc. (DEI) has been bringing some pretty cool new technologies to the table recently and we thought it deserved a closer look.
DEI's newest wrap is known as Titanium Exhaust Wrap and the premise is pretty interesting. Instead of a fiberglass-based material, DEI says the Titanium Wrap is made from pulverized lava rock and stranded into a fiber material that is then woven into the wrap. This is supposed to create a wrap that is stronger and capable of withstanding a greater temperature range. DEI says it has also addressed one of the greatest complaints about wraps--this new material is resistant to abrasions and isn't very absorbent. That means that it won't tear apart with a little contact and it won't become oil soaked as easily as other wraps. What we do know is the wrap has a cool metallic sheen that looks pretty high tech.
Of course, looks mean nothing in circle track racing. If it doesn't help you go faster, make your equipment more dependable or save you time, it's practically worthless. To find out whether--and just how much--a header wrap can help your racing effort, we put DEI's new Titanium wrap to the test on a real racing engine on the dyno. Here's what we found.