I just got done reading your entire post for the fifth or sixth time, and have a few questions.
You *clearly* have too much time on your hands!!!
I'll get out and take some pictures tonight or this weekend. Feel free to harass me if they're not here by Monday.
I'm still on my second muffler...a Jones Full Boar Turbo Tube Muffler. Review here: viewtopic.php?f=35&t=2741&p=97847&hilit=jones+muffler#p97847
It was cheap. $25-40, IIRC. It's pretty good, but I will build a quieter system "in my spare time".
My ultimate plan is to quiet it under the hood. First choice is to add a small turbo...not for power (already has more than needed) but for noise abatement. Another option is to add a big exhaust can under the hood. I'm actually thinking a largish can under the steering shaft, with input and output both at the rear end of it, feeding outside the car to the little Jones muffler. No telling when this might happen...Daddyhood is busy business!
I really think noise control is very important for these cars. Not only to be a good neighbor, but to make the car more enjoyable beyond the first 20 miles. And to prevent hearing loss. (what?)
Glad my build log is so useful and/or entertaining!
ps. Please post a link to your build log!