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Harley Wheel Fitment Guide – Max Wheel Size You Can Fit Without Modifications

by | Jan 4, 2023 | Fitment

The ultimate fitment guide to front and rear Harley wheels without the need to purchase and install a rake kit, new fender, wider rear swing arm, or heavy modifications. This guide also includes matching tire sizes.

What’s The Largest Front Wheel I Can Install On A Harley Without Expensive Modifications?

Larger and wider motorcycle wheels make your Harley look tougher, but there are other reasons you may consider upgrading your wheels. Big wheels are a smoother ride as they are able to absorb disturbances on the road’s surface.

Another significant advantage of motorcycles with powerful engines is that they also support the transfer of power. Wider wheels are essential when it comes to the rear wheel where the rubber meets the road.

So what is the maximum size wheel fitment on a Harley?

21 inches is the largest front wheel you can install on a Harley touring model without changing the fender or rake.

The rear wheel fitment depends on your model and year. Most Harley touring models’ maximum is 6.25 inches rear width without heavy modifications. Think of all the components tucked under your rear fender, such as the swing arm, brakes, belt drive, and pulley.

Please contact us with any questions you have about your Harley wheel fitment at the bottom of this guide.

2013 harley davidson touring model

In this picture, the bolt securing the fender is coming from the inside of the forks and threaded into a blind hole that stops midway through the fork leg. The fenders contain a hole the bolt slides through. This allows a slight enlargement of the hole so the fender can be moved up if necessary.


Why Is The 21-inch Front Wheel The Maximum You Can Install On A Harley Without Modification?

A 21-inch (diameter) x 3.25-inch (width) front wheel will fit on a Harley touring model without requiring you to change the rake or fender. Depending on the year and model, the fender may need to be relocated with a fender adapter that will lift the factory fender to allow for the proper clearance.

Pre-2013 Harley touring models were designed with a front fender mounted with four bolts inside the fender (two on each side). The hole on the fender can be enlarged by drilling it and holding the fender up while tightening the fender bolts. The wheel fitment will be a close call on these pre-2013 Harley-Davidsons. Make sure you have enough clearance and ensure that the tire does not rub on the fender.

2014 harley davidson with fender lift
2014 harley davidson before and after

The “before” picture depicts two bolts holding the fender to the fork leg. The “after” picture depicts two bolts in the same spot holding a small bracket that moves the two holes up about 2 inches. Also included are 2 additional bolts holding the lift bracket to the fender itself.


Post-2014 Harley models are a different fitment story altogether. Installing a 21-inch wheel on these models requires a fender relocation bracket. It needs this because the fender itself is threaded and is secured to the fork by four bolts (two on each side) that come from the outside and thread directly into the fender.

Please contact us with any questions you have about your Harley wheel fitment at the bottom of this guide.

fender relocation bracket

Can I Fit A 5.5-Inch Wide Front Wheel On My Harley Without Modification?

Short answer, it will require some modification, but there is an easier solution.

If you want a wider front wheel for your Harley, SMT manufactures the Bulldog Series, which is a 21 x 5.5 inch fat tire wheel. The wider width gives the tire a taller profile similar to the 23-inch wheel and outer tire diameter.

Bulldog 21


The wide 21×5.5 inch Bulldog wheel requires a rake kit to correct the steering geometry. The rake kit required is the same one used to install a 23 x 3.75 inch front wheel. The overall rolling diameter, including the installed tire, has a very similar fitment.

There is a smaller fat tire option that does not require the use of a rake kit, and that would be the 18×5.5 inch Bulldog wheel. Although you don’t need a rake kit for the perfect fitment, you will still need the correct fender, as well as, fork slider cans for certain Harley models.

Please contact us with any questions you have about your Harley wheel fitment at the bottom of this guide. You can also download our PDF: Wheel Fitment Chart for Harley Davidson Models by clicking the button below.


Harley Wheels & Tires Fitment Guide

Our Harley wheels and tires fitment guide illustrates stock wheels and tires, as well as, the maximum sizes without modifications. Click the button below to download the PDF. If you have any questions or concerns about this guide, please contact SMT below. Our customer service crew is hands down the best in the industry.