>>3) The windshield amplifies, reflects and directs the exhaust noise directly into my ears and brain. Eh, what's that you say?!?<<
It says you can always tell a hardcore 'pedder by the bugs in his teeth when he grins.
>>As far as the straight pipe goes, it has to be much less restrictive than a muffler, but maybe the engine needs a little back pressure to operate properly...?<<
For all that I have never really seen proof either way, I suspect this may be the case, as in adding a little compression, but don't take that as established fact.
>>I can't really test drive it right now, since it is raining...<<
What, you don't think the drowned-rat look is fashionable ? LOL !
All in all, seems general suspicion is the rings, and I agree, it's worth a look anyhow.