Installing Bender's VIP Pipe

Project Viper's New Triple Triple Power

Nov. 01, 2005 By Matthew Baynard
The 2002 Yamaha Viper is an amazing sled, no one will argue that fact. BUT, all good things can be made better with a bit of good ole hard work. Bender has spent the past year doing just that, with a whole lot of research and development and an awful lot of hours spent on the dyno. The results are a set of triple pipes that are beautifully manufactured, finished and fitted into the very tight front end of the 2002 Yamaha Viper, and pump the stock horsepower up to 153. With these triples, the Bender team has once again produced a set of pipes worthy of the Bender name plate. More importantly, they are worth the investment for the snowmobiler who wants power and rock solid reliability.

Their was no second or third choice when we decided we needed to make more horsepower with our pair of Vipers. I wanted Bender quality and reliabilty or I didn't want triple pipes. In fact I wanted Bender to do the whole enchilada or nothing. More on that later. It seems to be the industry trend for a small handful of companies, like Bender, to do the R&D and then the have others try to clone the products. We've seen it with A.D. Boivins suspension kits, Woody's studs, REC-LIFTs lifts and I'm sure that some one will try to clone the Bender triple pipes. Remeber that other pipes may look very close, but their not the same and the results wont be either.

So why did we pick Bender to do all the engine work on our Vipers? Very simple, I wanted it all to work together from the second I pulled the cord until I put the sleds back in the garage. Bender does what the computer industry calls interoperabilty testing. Which means that all the compenents of a solution are tested together to ensure that they function together as planned. That's why when you buy a Hewlett-Packard or other brand computer, they want you to buy the upgrades directly from them. They've tested all the components to make sure they all work together. You can buy 'clone' components slightly cheaper, but they may not all work together. The same goes for performance modifications that are not tested together, on an engine.

Bender's approach is simple, the build a pipe that works with the snomobile and then they do extensive testing to get the optimal performance out of the sled with jetting, clutch work, and all the details that make it a complete package. You can get a base line on a dyno, but until the snowmobile has good ole snow under it, you really don't know who it will perform.

For that reason, if you buy a preseason pipe, and the manufacturer gives you detailed clutch and jetting information, they're making huge assumptions. Those assumptions can cost you horsepower and overall rideability. Bender, didn't give the jetting and clutching information out preseason. They had some ballpark ideas, but until their annual testing trip to Alaska, they couldn't confirm any of them. That's right, Bender basically moves his R&D team to Alaska prior to the season to test what they've learned on the grass, asphalt and dyno. I don't know of any other performance shop that does this. It's expensive and time consuming, but it make a difference that amounts to horsepower and rock solid reliability. This is also one of the reasons that the products coming out of Bender are the 'creme de creme' of the industry.

After Bender returns, normally the end of November, just prior to this articles posting, we hope to have a full feature on the Alaskan testing that the Bender goes does. We thinks it key, the attention to detail and testing of a product, is what ensure the quality that we demand.

Kit Installation

What we've done is to start our installation of the triple pipes, and we'll follow it up with a completion article at the Bender facilities in New York as soon as Bender returns from Alaska. Normally at the end of November. What we've done is prepare an article that takes you through the setup and installation of the triples. We think this will be helpful, since we followed the already detailed Bender instructions, but we also had a few tips to help the novice installer. We've also included lots of full color images to help you understand the orientation and position of the various components.

The second article will cover the jetting and clutching work that will need to be done. Along with that article, we'll be covering the trail porting that will take place at the Bender shop also. For the money, we recommend the trail porting to go along with the triple pipe installation. You'll get the most out of your upgrade and the reliability is not impacted one bit. The end result is also a whopping 163 horsepower. Pretty amazing output from a 700cc triple that is still a trail cruiser when you want to enjoy the scenery.

Kit Contents

The Bender kit is very complete and the pipes arrived well protected from one another and from shipping . The table below has the kit contents and list of tools/misc items required for the installation. We've added a few in italics that will help also.

Bender Kit Contents Required Tools for Installation
(3) pipes Drill motor and¼" and 3/16" bits
(3) pipe flanges 10 mm end wrench
(1) silencer pack 10 mm socket
(1) stinger extension 1 3/8" hole saw
(8) silencer springs
½" end wrench

(2) heat shields ( 1 large, 1 small)

½" socket
(2)¼" bolts Phillips Screwdriver (long)
(2)¼" nuts Spring Tool
(2)¼" washers Razor Blade
(1) 10-24 allen head cap screw Marker suitable for tracing on foam
(1) 10-24 stainless nylock nut Magnet (if you have butterfingers like we do, you'll need it!)
(1) 16" length helical wire wrap (1/2" diam., 500 deg F) Pliers or vice grips
(2) length heat tape Hacksaw blade
(1) 3/16 X 5/8 grip (black) rivet Yamabond 6B (best bond on earth)
(1) 3/16" rivet washer A snowmobile lift will save your back if you have one
(1) 6" length 3/16 helical wrap Plasti-Kote engine paint, we scratched our pipes up pretty good getting them fitted. A quik blast of paint will get them looking good again. We sprayed them while they where on the sled.
(1) nylon loop strap Beer - helps to keep free labor in the garage with you.

Bender's instructions, start out with the following warning, "READ THE ENTIRE DIRECTIONS THOROUGHLY BEFORE BEGINNING." We agree and we'll add, read them slowly.

We'll start each step in bold and try to expand on the Bender instructions as we go. Each paragraph is a step that needs to be completed. We didn't want to confuse anyone with our own installation steps, since the Bender intruction sheet is one of the best, so we've used their instructions as the base of this article. We did have a few additions, but nothing major. Let's get started.

Removing the stock exhaut and installing heat shields.

Right Heat Shield

Using Bender Spring Tool, we removed the stock silencer and pipe, setting aside OEM springs for use later. We first removed the springs at the Y-pipe and then the springs at the silencer. Pull the OEM pipe out and then remove the springs that hold the silencer in.

Once the pipe and silencer are gone, use 10 mm end wrench and socket to remove the Y-pipe from the engine. Leave the stock exhaust gasket in place as long as it's in good shape. Don't be tempted to us a gasket sealer, it wont work as well as the OEM gasket.


The stock hood wire mount that will be removed and covered with a heat shield.
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Install the three individual pipe flanges using the stock Y pipe nuts. There is only one way these go on correctly, and the orientation for these will be obvious. Be careful not to overtighten the bolts, as a snapped stud in the head will be a mess to fix. You may want to leave the PTO flange off, you'll see later in the article how we installed it with the pipe installed.

Using drill and 3/16" bit, drill out the rivet that attaches the hood support wire to the bellypan (seen on right side as you are seated on the sled). Now use plier or vise grips and drill the rivet the rest of the way out of the hood cable eyelet. We did this by holding the aluminum cable end with vise grips on a scrap of board to drill it out.

The hole left from the mount removal is covered by the heat shield. Take your time, a razor knife can help clean up the hole.
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The right shield installed in the sled, with the bolt visible in the center of the image.
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Using the hacksaw blade, remove the molded hood wire mount (from which rivet was drilled out in previous steps) flush to the bellypan. The photo below is of the removed portion of belly pan. We used a carbide round hacksaw blade to be able to cut it at any angle. A dremel tool with a cutter works well too.

Install the large heat shield to cover the hole created in the previous steps; slide the heat shield tab between bulkhead and bellypan.

Hold the heat shield tightly against the bellypan, with the¼" drill bit, and using the¼" hole in the heat shield as a pilot, drill a¼" hole and secure using¼" bolt (with flat washer on each side) and nylock nut, using ½" wrench and socket.

Left Heat Shield

Slide tab into place between bulkhead and bellypan as you did the right side shield. Trace the outline of the shield onto the foam. Carefully cut the foam with a razor blade. Remove foam so that heat shield will rest directly on the bellypan. A razor blade held by hand worked best for us. See photos below.

Using the¼" hole in shield, drill hole through bellypan, fasten like the right shield, using supplied¼" bolt, washers and nylock nut. Fasten down with ½" wrench and socket.

At this time take the longer length of helical wire wrap and place it around the wires on hood between OEM cable ties holding wires to hood. Now install the two lengths of foil heat tape to hood. It helps to pre shape the foil by hand so it fits nicely around the foam under the cowl. See photos below.

Next disconnect wires from the chassis to hood and pull them out from underneath bumper support and re-attach them together up along bellypan to hood lip. Using black 3/16" rivet, rivet washer and white nylon loop strap. Attach wires to bellypan on the outside of the hood cable. See photos below.

This is key, and Bender points it out with a big bold IMPORTANT!!!, when moving the wires, make sure they're not going to touch anything hot. That means they're not near the pipes at all.

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The foam is marked and ready to be removed with a razor blade.
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The left heat shield is mounted and you can see the wire mount in place in the left of the image.
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Enlarge to see the heat tape installed on the cowl foam and the helical heat wrap on the wiring.
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You can see the new cable routing in this photo. The cable once ran under the bumper mount, now its on top. The new route is marked in white.
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BEVERAGE BREAK!!! - time to read the instructions again since the complicated parts are going to start.


This is a Bender photo, but it shows the power valve cable routing perfectly. When enlarged you'll just be able to see the helical wrap on the cable.
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The next steps are the most complicated part of the pipe installation. Please read through the following paragraphs extra carefully, to ensure you have a thorough understanding of the next steps.

Remove the two bolts that hold the power valve servo motor to chassis and disconnect its wires and lay it on the clutch guard. The back bolt can be hard to reach, just push the plastic covers back so you can get a socket on them. Try not to drop the bolts, they're a bugger to get. I know, since I dropped the bolt.

Now take the power valve cable from the mag cylinder and the remaining length of helical wrap, and install the wrap on the cable where the cable goes around the PTO cylinder. See photo to right. Next place the center and mag power valve cables under the power valve housings on the center and PTO cylinder. The helical wrap is going to prevent the rubber casing of the power valve cable from melting. The cables are wrapped in a metal housing so the actual cable can't be burnt, but this will keep the cables looking better and you want to keep direct heat off them.

Now rotate the servo motor and cable 360° counterclockwise (as you're sitting on the sled) and re-install back to chassis. Compare your results with the photo above, since the routing is critical. The heat of the pipes and the PTO cylinder will melt the black rubber insulation completely off. As noteed by Bender, this would be a convenient opportunity to synchronize your power valves if you have the tool available. If you do your own maintenance, the power valve tool is orderable from your dealer and a good investment.

Pipe Installation

The real work starts now. I must admit, however embarassing, that I needed the help of my expert wrench man, my brother, to get the pipes installed. I wanted to follow the instructions word for word, but I wasn't completely successful. Up until now, the instructions have been pretty much verbatim what Bender said to do. I would recommend you still try their steps first, but if you can't get the pipes on, try our modified procedures. I'd also strongly recommend a helper and a lift to get the sled up in the air. One last recommendation is to dry fit the pipes in one at a time so you can see the final orientation of the pipes. Then actually dry fit all three together as the instructions call for. This helps eliminate the need to clean Yamabond off the pipes and flanges when you can't get them installed the first time around.

MAG PIPE (the pipe next to the silencers and magneto, thus the mag pipe)


The three pack silencers installed. In the larger image the spring is shown installed, but we left it off until the pipes were fitted. Don't forget to use the rubber foot from the OEM silencer.
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Remove bottom rubber pad from the stock silencer and install in the same position on pipe silencer.

Install silencer into sled making sure the three pipes exit the stock bellypan hole, and that the rubber pad sits in the mount. We didn't install the spring as stated in the Bender instruction, I wanted to be able to freely nudge the silencer around. Put Yamabond 6B on each end of the mag pipe, then take the mag pipe and install into flange on the #3 cylinder (right side as you sit on the sled) and insert other end into silencer pipe that is closest to the outside of the sled. This is the easiest pipe to install and a minimal amount of manipulation is needed. My audience called my manipulation more of a beating, but I'm no mechanical genius either.

Use two of the stock Yamaha exhaust springs to attached the mag pipe to the exhaust flange.


Now the fun begins. These are two very hard pipes to install regardless what anyone tell you. A helper is very helpful and highly recommended also. Remember that to build all that beautiful power, the pipes needed to be equal length and fat. That means fitting three in the place that one once was. The shape of the Vipers nose is also a bit tight. These two pipes need to be installed together or you'll never be able fit them. It is not just helpful, but a necessity in my opinion, to have a second person help with this step. Remember to put a conservative amount of Yamabond 6B on both ends of the pipes.

Put the pipes together as they will sit in the chassis. This will be a tight fit. Reference the photos with the instructions and this article to understand the general orientation of the pipes once installed. This is another area where we strayed away from the Bender installation sheet, we pre-installed the pipe flange onto the PTO pipe. We had originally installed it earlier as instructed by Bender. With the flange on the pipe and not the engine, we had just a bit more leeway to jiggle the pipe into place. Once the pipes were fitted in, we simply fastened the PTO pipe flange down.

Using a knuckle saving spring puller, install four more of the stock Yamaha springs to spring pipes to corresponding flanges. Using the stinger extension supplied, connect center cylinder pipe to silencer with Yamabond 6B.


The pipes provide the new mounting location for the hood cable.
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The mounting of the hood springs can be difficult if you don't fish the spring clips from the front of the hood mount back towards the engine. Enlarging the photo will show this in detail.
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Use the eight supplied springs to fasten the pipes to the silencer.

Using the 10-24 bolt and nut supplied, reattach hood wire to the hook on mag pipe.

Now install hood cable retaining springs to center of bumper in hinge for hood. (See fig. 4 ) At this point, close hood and make sure clearance between mag pipe and screen is sufficient. If not, open hood and firmly press screen with hand and proper clearance can be achieved.



The airbox will also have to be modified. First remove airbox from sled by using phillips screwdriver to remove it from carbs, and then 10mm socket to remove from chassis. A tip for the shade tree mechanic is to remove the top of the airbox while its installed in the sled. You can then use your fingers to help work the rubber boots off the carbs.

Disconnect vent hose and throttle cable from carbs and push cables to the right and pull airbox out.
Once removed, disassemble and remove shelves in the center.

Next the top will need to be modified. Simply draw a line parallel to the stock slots ½" forward of them. Draw two more lines indicating width of stock slots forward past the new ½" line. These lines will be parallel and approximately 9 ½" apart. Now using hole saw make a slot 9 ½" long and 1 3/8" wide, ½" forward of stock slots. Clean and debur parts and reassemble airbox without shelves. The airbox doesn't need to be re-installed until proper jetting is established.

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Here's the marked airbox. Take your time and be precise so the final cuts are professional looking.
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The cut airbox installed on the sled. Be careful to clean out all the debris in the airbox so the carbs don't suck them into the engine. The foam snow barrier needs to be re-installed also.
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Installation of your Bender Racing VIP triple pipes is now complete.

SPECIAL NOTE : In this article we haven't provided any of the jetting and clutching information needed for the triple pipe installation. Don't use the factory jetting! Bender has an annual trip to Alaska where they get all their products in the snow and cold for testing. When the article was originally done, we hadn't received the proper jetting or clutch setup from Bender yet.

For the clutch and jet work, refer to the follow-on article, Project Bender Viper Clutch and Jetting Work. This article will also discuss the head gasket change that is required with the installation of the Bender triple pipes. We'll also cover the installation of the bender rear heat exchanger which is not optional if you want your Viper to run cool.

Back to the Project Viper Main Page.

The Bender Triple Pipes are available at most dealers throughout US or directly from Bender Racing, Canadian Distributors Magneto Sales 780-469-2807, and Bender Racing Canada 705-694-2620.


For more infomation contact Bender Racing at:
General Business Line: 716-941-5010
Order Line: 716-941-5010
Fax Line: 716-941-5990

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