After yet another very long (but not quite as shitty) day at work, I worked on the Chevelle again. Yesterday I picked up a couple ball flanges to deal with the pipes from the muffler not being square with the headers and started fitting one side. Today I finished fitting those parts up... and hit the next problem (though this one was predictable had I thought about it).
The diagram above shows the phases of exhaust issues. In A the mufflers are right, but the header flanges are not square with the pipe and thus cannot mate/seal. In B the flanges are square, but it puts the mufflers passing through eachother (and the differential/driveshaft). C is how it is going to be, with the mufflers in a physically-possible orientation and alignment corrected by ball flanges. In A-C the H-pipe is ignored.
My new problem is shown in D. The T-shaped pieces the H-pipe goes into on the sides are square, and since the pipes don’t run parallel this means the pipe cannot be square (this is like 6th grade geometry so I hope you follow without more pictures). The solution is shown in E, which requires me to run back down to Summit again to pick up another ball flange and a couple more clamps so that the H-pipe can ‘hinge’ in the middle.
This is how much it’s off by. I considered beating it into submission and making it work, but at this point I know I’m not going to be done before the weekend, I have plans all day Saturday, and it’s supposed to rain from Sunday through Wednesday so I might as well get the parts to do it right.