10 Motorcycle Patches to Avoid: A Guide to Responsible Riders
If you’re someone who loves riding your motorcycle with the wind to your face, taking in the open road, then you’re probably also very familiar with motorcycle patches. A time-honored tradition in the biking community, motorcycle patches are to some a right-of-passage, and to others a great offense. They can symbolize club affiliations, achievements, and personal statements. However, not all patches are created equal, and some can carry negative connotations or even lead to trouble. Big trouble; if you catch my drift.
In this article, we’ll explore 10 motorcycle patches to avoid, emphasizing responsible and respectful riding.
- 1 Percent Patches
- Hate Symbols
- Gang Sympathizers
- Offensive Language
- Fake Veterans
- Non-Existing Clubs
- Inappropriate Text
- Impersonating Security Officials
- Offensive Religious Symbols
#1 What Does A 1 Patch Mean?
Unless you’re a member of this notorious motorcycle crew, 1%er patches signify that the wearer belongs to an outlaw motorcycle gang or club. We all know the history and stories associated with the outlaw motorcycle gang. These clubs often engage in illegal activities, and wearing their patch can lead to unwanted attention from law enforcement and rival gangs. So, regardless of how cool the patch itself might look, it’s probably best to steer clear of these patches to maintain a law-abiding and safe riding experience.
What Does 15 Mean In The Outlaws MC?
Inside biker clubs, mainly among outlaw MC row, letters of the alphabet are assigned numerical values. This practice is known as the “alphabet code” or “1%er code.”
In this code, “A” is represented by 1, “B” by 2, and so on until the letter Z. Since “O” is the 15th letter of the alphabet, it is represented by the number 15.
What Does 13 and 1/2 Mean on a Bikers Vest?
Following the alphabetical code system, 13 is referred to as the letter M, which stands for motorcycle or Marijuana. Taking M for ‘Motorcycle’ 1/2 could be interpreted as halfway or completing a cycle. “13 1/2” might be a symbolic way of expressing jail sentence or his “back to life outside” hint.
What Does 81 Mean To Bikers?
Number 81 to biker vest refers to Hells Angels motorcycle club. Since H is the 8th letter of the alphabet and A is the 1st. Therefore, “81” stands for HA.
Regardless of known culture and use of numerical codes and symbols, the ultimate meanings of different signs and codes on biker’s vests and jackets may vary from club to club and region to region.
#2 Nazi Symbols or Hate Symbols
The world is a much different place than it was even just 10 years ago – never mind 70 years ago. Any patches or insignias associated with hate groups or ideologies have no place in modern society, and that includes the motorcycle community. Displaying symbols like swastikas or racist slogans not only reflects poorly on the wearer but can also incite anger and violence from others on the road. Imagine driving down the street, stopping at a red light, and getting punched in the face by someone who felt offended by the patch you’re wearing, even if you had no ill will intended. Wear this kind of patch, and that imaginary situation might just become your reality. Yikes!
#3 Gang-Related Patches
Patches that indicate affiliation with a street gang should be avoided at all costs. Wearing such patches can lead to misunderstandings, confrontations, and potentially dangerous situations with rival gangs or law enforcement.
#4 Profane or Offensive Language
Patches with explicit or offensive language can offend other riders, pedestrians, and motorists, tarnishing the reputation of the entire biking community. Respect for others on the road should always be a top priority.
#5 Fake Military Patches
Talk about having a lack of respect. Claiming military service that you didn’t actually perform is not only disrespectful to veterans but may also be illegal in some jurisdictions. But even if it isn’t illegal where you live, this is never a good idea. Avoid wearing patches or insignias that falsely represent military service.
#6 Outdated or Inaccurate Club Affiliations
Wearing a patch from a club that you no longer belong to or never belonged to can lead to confusion and potential confrontations. Ensure that your patches accurately represent your current affiliations.
#7 Inappropriate Sexual Content
Have you ever heard the saying, “There’s a place and time for everything?” Well, this is one of those things that have no place in the public. Patches featuring explicit sexual imagery or messages may offend others and even lead to legal trouble. Keep your patches tasteful and respectful; there are children out there on the road.
#8 Patches Impersonating Law Enforcement
Impersonating a police officer is a serious offense. Avoid patches that resemble law enforcement badges or uniforms to prevent legal repercussions and maintain a positive image within the riding community.
#9 Drug-Related Patches
Patches that glorify drug use or distribution can attract unwanted attention from law enforcement and lead to criminal charges. Keep your biking experience free from these negative associations.
#10 Offensive Political or Religious Symbols
Political and religious beliefs are deeply personal, and displaying patches that insult or ridicule these beliefs can provoke hostility. Promote tolerance and respect by avoiding such patches.
Motorcycle patches are a powerful way to express individuality and club affiliations, but they should be chosen with care and responsibility. Avoiding patches that promote hate, violence, illegal activities, or offensive content can help maintain a positive image for the motorcycle community and ensure a safer riding experience for everyone on the road. Always remember that respect, safety, and responsibility should be at the forefront of your biking journey.