It's been a while since I've updated this thread, but thought I'd show off my new exhaust!
I've had a nagging leak between the exhaust manifold and exhaust pipe flange. The PO had installed new exhaust a few years back and it was less than admirable. The 304 felt like it was struggling to breathe and I've always had a soft spot for the V8 rumble. After some research, I decided to stick with the stock manifolds, duals, Flowmaster 40's and exits behind the rear wheels. I'm thrilled with the results.
I first needed to do something with the rusty old manifolds. I really liked what Matt1981CJ7 did to his, so I picked up a bottle of Ospho, dipped the overnight, wirewheeled and painted them in POR15 Intake Manifold Gray (in hindsight I wish I'd picked a more "silver" color, but they still turned out fine).
By the way, when I posted these pics on another thread regarding exhaust, a member correctly pointed out that these were not CJ manifolds (these have a rear dump on the drivers side which interferes with the clutch linkage). Well, as it turns out, the muffler shop that installed the old system for the PO put a severe bend in the pipe to clear the linkage, and this resulted in a massive restriction in the flow. The shop I used got creative and made a more custom mandrel bend which preserved the integrity of the pipe opening. They tucked the mufflers between the rails and did a really nice job with the exits in the rear. Also, the power difference I have now is amazing. Part of me thought "Nah, it's just the sound that makes it SEEM like it has more power", but after a couple of days of driving it, I'm fairly convinced that restriction was costing me some HP.
I see a summer project in my future. The underside of this thing is NAS-T!
I took a quick video of my wife unit and daughter headed to the store, but I guess I need to download it somewhere other than photobucket in order for it to work.