The Best Exhausts For The Harley Fatboy

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Most Harley’s exhausts aren’t all too bad, but the benefits of going aftermarket are huge and it’s no different if you ride a Harley Fatboy. In this buying guide we’ve researched the best exhausts for the Harley Fatboy.

We came up with these three choices based on our own experience riding Harley Fatboys or more commonly referred as Softails. We compared a variety of factors like price, materials, brand trustworthiness, features and also just how the exhaust felt in our hands.

While you can be confident that all our recommendations will fit your Harley Fatboy, it’s best to double check fitment specifically in the small chance that the exhaust we recommend does fit.

ImageProductFeaturesPrice
Bassani Radial SweepersBassani Radial Sweepers
  • Super aesthetics 
  • Great looking design
  • Bolt on design
  • Easy installation 
  • Made in the USA
  • Light weight
  • Stainless steel
  • Double wall steel
  • Stainless steel
  • Great customer reviews
  • Cool looking slash cut ends
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Vance & Hines Shortshots StaggeredVance & Hines Shortshots Staggered
  • Slack cut ends
  • Full coverage heat shields
  • Removable baffles
  • Mounting hardware included
  • Made in the USA
  • Deep growl
  • Great build quality
  • Exceptional longevity
  • Great heat resistance 
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Slip-On or full system for the Harley Fatboy?

We’ve given our two best recommendations for both Slip on Exhausts and full system exhausts that will fit your Fat Boy, we recommend purchasing a full system because you’’ get the best bang for your buck and the most performance benefits possible.

For other motorcycle types there’s usually quite a disparity in price between slip-on and full system, but browsing various stores for exhausts that fit Harley Fatboys, surprisingly the slip ons aren’t that much cheaper than a full system.

Spending a little more money to purchase a full system is going to get you a lot more performance per dollar spent, but beware that a full system will be more difficult to install and it needs to be done right or it will cause problems very quickly.

If you’re on a budget we recommend you pick up a slip on exhaust if you’re looking for best bang for your buck and less constrained by price we recommend you pick up a full system exhaust.

Bassani Radial Sweepers Full System Exhaust

Best Full-System For The Fatboy

Bassani’s Radial Sweeper is one of the best performing and arguably the best looking exhaust available for the Harley Fatboy. If it’s the matte black or stainless steel, it’s a great looking exhaust that performs pretty good too.

Bassani’s Radial Sweeper is by far the best looking exhaust for the Harley Fatboy, the way it curves away from the engine. Make sure you compare the matte black and the steel version. Personally I prefer the steel but it’s going to depend on the style and look of your motorcycle.

I know we’re raving about the look of this exhaust but there’s more to it than just a pretty face, because of it’s design it actually cuts down a lot of weight, mainly because the two exhaust systems are quite short and also relatively narrow, it comes in at 16 pounds which should see you shedding a few pounds switching from stock.

Expect some significant performance benefits across the whole spectrum,better torque and higher top speeds.

If you look closely at the ends of this exhaust you’ll notice there’s two rows of steel protruding at the end. That’s because they’re made using double wall stainless steel, this will make it a little heavier, although it’s going to improve it’s longevity because of the added heat resistance, and in the case of a crash it’s going to be more durable since it’s double walled isntead of single.

Lastly we’re gonna cover the sound of this exhaust, you know it does come down ever so slightly to personal preference although generally a deep pur is what you’ll be looking for from a quality exhaust for your Harley Fatboy. The Radial Sweeper is no different and comes with a deep pur that growls more aggressively when you hammer the throttle.

The only real downside we could find is that since the ends of these exhausts are quite short, they actually are parallel to the seet. Take a look from the end and draw a line upwards. Now this isn’t too much of a problem once you’re moving because the wind carries the fumes before they can even get close to you. Although if you’re at the lights you could potentially get a whiff of your motorcycle’s fumes.

Pros
  • Super aesthetics
  • Great looking design
  • Bolt on design
  • Easy installation
  • Made in the USA
  • Light weight
  • Stainless steel
  • Double wall steel
  • Stainless steel
  • Great customer reviews
  • Cool looking slash cut ends
Cons
  • Pricey
  • Ends of the exhausts are parallel to the seat

Vance & Hines Shortshots Staggered Exhaust

Best Slip-On For The Fatboy

Vance and Hines staggered short shots are one of their lesser known models but that definitely doesn’t take away from being excellent quality and well built exhaust.

While the Shortshots is one of the best exhausts available for the Harley Fatboy, it’s not exactly affordable. Unfortunately full systems for Harley Fat Boys do not come cheap and while we tried looking for an alternative Vance and Hines was one of the cheapest options.

In terms of quality, holding this exhaust in your hands feels very sturdy and you can just tell it’s build quality is top of the range.

The heat shield fully fills the exhaust, while a lot of exhausts don’t have a heat shield the ones that do will last a lot longer and general longevity is going to be way up there. When they’re fully covered you can expect it will last you a heck of a long time.

The shortshots sound is an awesome deep growl that will definitely piss off your neighbors, read a few customer reviews and a number of them their neighbors complained at the sounds of this exhaust.

While build quality is top quality and an entire covering of heatshield will greatly improve the longevity of this exhaust, it does also mean there’s going to be a bit of extra weight. Coming in at 22 pounds I wouldn’t call this exhaust light, it’s in the middle of weight ranges, and it’s main drawback is that there is more performance to be squeezed out if it didn’t have an entire shield covering it. This will come down to personal preference and what you value you most? Performance or longevity…

Pros
  • Slack cut ends
  • Full coverage heat shields
  • Removable baffles
  • Mounting hardware included
  • Made in the USA
  • Deep growl
  • Great build quality
  • Exceptional longevity
  • Great heat resistance
Cons
  • Rare Complaints of poor quality brackets
  • Poor packaging
  • Could do with less weight

Author
Cooper Higgins

Cooper Higgins is a motorcycle enthusiast who’s been riding for the last 10 years. He’s passionate about all things motorcycles and started Bikes Future to help other riders make the right motorcycle moves. He rides a pimped out white Kawasaki Ninja 400, and also enjoys adventure riding when out of the City.