Bikers from across the world ensure they have the right accessories to augment their bikes. It is important that a biker dresses well when out with biker buddies. Their usual attire is jeans and leather jackets but these are usually decked with numerous accessories, which make them stand out. These accessories include belts, altered helmets and vest patches among others.
Biker vest patches are attached to jackets or vests and these colorful patches not only serve as decorative pieces and add color but they also convey different meanings. Biker patches represent specific activities that bikers may have taken part in or the clubs they belong to. Bikers patches include the one-piece patch and the three-piece patch
The one-piece patch is displayed on the back of the jacket or vest and usually signifies the motorcycling group or the riding club the biker is a member of. The club’s logo or the location of the club is usually shown in this patch.
The three-piece patches are displayed on the back of the vest or jacket and bikers earn them after completing rigorous tests, which allows the biker to gain membership in the organization. The three-piece patches that bikers wear also make them stand out from the ordinary bikers. The tree-piece patches show an exclusiveness that is not obvious in the one-piece patches. In the top section of this patch is the club’s name, while the centerpiece contains the emblem. The bottom section will depict where the club is located. Sometimes club members who are not connected to a local club will have the word “nomad” on the bottom section of their patches to indicate their status. All three combined areas of this patch are known as the club’s colors.
Activity vest patches are also called rally badges. These are given to bikers for attending or participating in major rallies. Rally badges are also given when bikers take part in charity rides. The activity patches vary depending on the preferences of the riders. Some riders will choose activity patches depicting the original country of the bike, others will prefer taking their original country and there are other bikers who prefer to choose their military service. See this URL for more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colors_(motorcycling)
Outlaw Bikers Badges
There are ‘gangster bikers’ badges and these are diamond shaped. These patches are used to identify the one percent outlaw bikers who are not a part of the regular bikers in the community. These patches may consist of criminal activities or sexual images in general.
The majority of self-designated “gangster” motorcycle clubs wear patches having a diamond-shape with a log reading “1%.” This means that these bikers do not think they are to be associated with the 99% of motorcyclists who are supposedly represented by the American Motorcycle Association. Some other patches that these outlaw bikers wear indicate that they have participated in activities that are of criminal or sexual nature. Among the outlaw bikers’ patches is the number 13. It is alleged that the number 13 represents the letter “M” which is in the 13th position in the alphabet, and is an indirect reference to marijuana or methamphetamine use.
Rules and regulations of any organization are set as guidelines as to how members of the group should conduct themselves. This is no different in the motorcycle riding community where vest patches indicate the rules governing the group. Every patch conveys a specific meaning, either for the person, or the club, or organization they belong to. Patches are designed according to the dictates of the club or organization, using whatever materials are currently available. Some bikers vest patches will indicate a biker’s home state and ethnicity, among others.
While patches may be used for self-expression, they are also used in the small community of brigand bikers as a means of identifying the different groups. Both the outlaw bikers and his law-abiding counterpart often use the same patches, those in the one per cent outlaw group usually cut their vest patches into three pieces before attaching them to their vests. This is an indication that they are not willing to abide by societal rules.
Meanings for Other Patches
- Crescent Patches: Some bikers who are rock-and -roll music fans or musicians will wear a crescent either below or above another patch. There are situations, however, where this patch may be misconstrued to represent an outlaw biker, but the real meaning is that the biker who wears this patch loves music.
- 9 or 934 Patches: The remaining 99 percent of riders wear patches just to indicate that they are affiliated to the American Motorcycle Association, and several other organizations. There are the 9 or 934 patches, for example, which indicate that the biker who wears it is part American Indian. Flags designed on patches are used to indicate the state or country where the club comes from and it also indicates ethnicity or nationality. Read here for more on patches.
- Ace of Spades: The ace of spades is among the most common symbols you will see on a biker’s vest. This patch is an indication of the willingness of the biker to fight for their club, and or their country. Since many lawful biker clubs often participate in issues relating to communities, the ace of spade could also signify the willingness to fight long and hard to protect persons who are affected by abuse or domestic violence.
- Wing Patches: These biker vest patches are very common also and they convey several different meanings. When worn by legitimate or law-abiding bikers, wing patches usually represent special achievement, the achievement, however, will vary among individuals as well as clubs. In most extreme alliances though, wings can signify sexual or unlawful achievement, however, different colors are used to indicate the type of acts performed.
- Skull and Crossbones: These vest patches convey several meanings, but this depends on the club the rider is attached to. In the 99% lawful clubs, it is an indication that the biker wearing it has killed someone or has experienced a near-death situation.
Bikers vest patches are made specifically to identify the group. Nevertheless, different patches may suggest more than what the design says.