Front Wheel Size Matters. New 23″ And 26″ Front Fenders.

Builders have found a new way to rejuvenate and improve the overall look of their custom bikes. After focusing during years on the rear wheel and experimenting with diameter and width to the point of exhausting all possible rideable options, the new cool thing is to use taller front wheels. And in many cases, not all, it’s both an aesthetic improvement while keeping the bike perfectly rideable. Hence the 23″ and 26″ front wheel pushing for a new generation of tires and fenders.

So, in the next months, expect the industry to multiply the options available to dress your new taller wheel, either 23″ or 26″. One of them is Eddie Trotta’s front fenders that he chose to propose in heavy duty composite fiberglass to keep your front forks as light and possible and not add close to 18 pounds to it.

They  wrap a full 180-degree and perfectly fit the radius of all 23″ & 26″ wheel/tire combos on the market. They are bolt-on fenders on all Harley-Davidson forks and most customs. Also available are 21″ front fenders in 2 widths. At Thunder Cycle Designs. 954-763-2100.

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19 Responses to “Front Wheel Size Matters. New 23″ And 26″ Front Fenders.”


  1. 1 Wikked Steel Nov 28th, 2010 at 8:58 am

    Who says that a tall front wheel keeps the bike perfectly rideable? These tall wheels completely change the physics of your front end. That large of a rotating mass creates far more gyroscopic energy than the stock wheel. Add in that now the 2 wheels have such completely different gyroscopic tendencies and now the once predictable effortless handling of the stock bike becomes a situation where you have to be aware and compensate for what you’ve done to improve/change the aesthetics.

    Don’t get me wrong, I like the way it looks but you do pay a price.

  2. 2 freedomlaw Nov 28th, 2010 at 9:21 am

    I have been wondering about what Wikked Steel says. I expect that the major motorcycle manufacturers have considered this in their designs. I also wonder about a more narrow wheel on the front of a bagger. Just me, but I always found the thinner width tires to be more apt to slide on tar during rides on country roads on very hot days, and to be more difficult to control on highways that have been scaled for resurfacing.

  3. 3 Woody Nov 28th, 2010 at 12:09 pm

    Wikked, are you sure? Everything about those wheel/tire combinations appear to have less mass than the stock setup, especially near the outer diameter where most of the gyroscopic force is created. I have no dog in this and wouldn’t run a tall skinny tires on a bagger/tourer because I think they look stupid, but I have to question your assessment on the forces. I feel the smaller tire footprint and less cushioning of the lower profile tire would be the real detriment to handling compared to stock. For the record, I wouldn’t put ghetto hoopty rims on a classic ’60’s Riviera either ;)

  4. 4 zyon Nov 28th, 2010 at 1:24 pm

    “Who says that a tall front wheel keeps the bike perfectly rideable?”

    I’d guess the people who have ridden them….

  5. 5 1/4 20 Nov 28th, 2010 at 2:50 pm

    As far as bigger front wheel a good rider can rider can learn to ride anything .

  6. 6 BadMonkeyMW Nov 28th, 2010 at 8:23 pm

    Woody, I see where your thought process is, but it doesn’t play out in practice. The only thing you really need to look at to believe that a larger front wheel doesn’t handle better is race bikes. They run 17″ wheels. The best combination of handling and stability.

    These big front wheels are just the next fad for the credit card bikers to jump onto now that the huge back tires have played themselves out. If somebody likes them, get one for your bike. Just don’t kid yourself about the negative effect it WILL have on your bikes handling.

  7. 7 Woody Nov 28th, 2010 at 11:28 pm

    Bad Monkey, thanks but I don’t see anything in your response about the mass issue (compared to OEM) I was addressing.

  8. 8 Wiz Nov 29th, 2010 at 3:49 am

    I just know that a skinny front tire doesn’t work as well in a variety of road conditions like road construction, gravel, etc. We can’t always ride the smooth main streets so you have to, as the Boy Scouts say, “Be Prepared.” That groovy bagger custom don’t look too good layin’ on it’s side. It’s Form follow Function, not as alot of people go with Function follow Form, yer gonna get into trouble sooner or later. Wiz

  9. 9 broadway choppers Nov 29th, 2010 at 7:24 am

    Form follow Function on all your main rides ,! JUST another reason to have a couple bikes as its a hot look and i just started building one this winter and looking forward to styling n profiling my hood next summer on it, will see 1st hand how that works out on the streets.

  10. 10 Mike Nov 29th, 2010 at 9:35 am

    I’ve ridden a lot of baggers with both stock wheels as well as 18″ and 21″ wheels. Personally, I prefer stock or 18″ at most. A bagger with a 21″ wheel does feel less stable at low speeds. If you lower the front end down an inch ot two it helps a lot!

  11. 11 Josh Bourassa Nov 29th, 2010 at 10:29 am

    I am in the build process of a 26 inch front and Eddies fender is exactly what I was looking for. All this grypin about form, function, ridability blah blah blah. I would bet to say most othe posters on here have had or pined over a little bobber or an old school chopper, tall bars horrible geometry springer front end, much less a fat tire modern chopper. They were cool, this is cool now. Guys will ride whatever they want and figure out how. That is what the modern big twin culture is built on.

  12. 12 Harl Nov 29th, 2010 at 10:59 am

    I’ll be damned, they’ve reinvented the wheel!

  13. 13 Olive Oil Nov 29th, 2010 at 11:02 am

    I remember a pot hole one night in Nashville to remember!! Bottomed out on the motor , would hate to think how a skinny front wheel would have handled that situation.
    Potholes I remember!!

  14. 14 jatinder pal Nov 29th, 2010 at 11:58 am

    Beautiful front wheel design and fender….love ur work Eddie.

    Who cares about handling,this is a showbiz.

  15. 15 martin Twofeather Nov 29th, 2010 at 6:14 pm

    Ditto,Love the work Eddie and keep it up……………
    You want to race buy a race bike.
    You want style see Trotta.
    There is plenty for everyone…………

  16. 16 Bigfoot Nov 29th, 2010 at 7:22 pm

    I ride all year in all weather. I have a narrow 21 on the front and have had no problems with it in rain, snow ir hot tar. I have a raked and extended front end set-up and I can take my hands off without havein the bike move one way or the other. Tracks just like stock. I do all my own work and I just make sure everything stays in a straight line when I weld the front on. I have one bike with a 280 rear and a 21 front that is on a frame that I streached front and back with a 40 degree rake and a 20 over front and it has had no problems in ant weather. The 26 shouldn’t be any different.

  17. 17 highrpm Nov 30th, 2010 at 2:09 am

    “Who cares about handling,this is a showbiz.” like 8″ spike heels.

  18. 18 joe casillas Oct 4th, 2011 at 1:34 am

    I want to order a fender

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