MC Patches Defined..
The Patch, explained..
In the 1920’s, theAmerican Motorcyclists’ Association (AMA) was founded. It was supported by motorcycle manufactures to promote American motorcycling. The AMA sanctioned clubs. These groups of riders started wearing matching attire with their club name embroidered on the back of shirts and jackets from the same area that rode together as motorcycle “clubs”. At AMA events, awards were given for the best-dressed club.
After WWII, most returning GI’s contined the AMA culture. Some went a different direction… Because they were denied participation in AMA race competition… The started proxy clubs and raced under the new club name.. Their original club was “outlawed” from competition by the AMA.. Also, in a newpaper article written about Hollister ’47 , it was noted that 99% of all motorcyclists were upright solid citizens…..So, from these two (and loads more) ideas, we can see the origins of the concept of an “outlaw” club and 1% motorcyclists.
Some time after the 1947 uproar in Hollister, some “outlaw” clubs began to use a patch that was different from the “civilian” AMA patches. They even put their patches on old Levi jackets with the sleeves hacked off. They used patches that used three separate pieces. The top rocker has the name of the club, the center has the emblem of the club, the bottom rocker has the local chapter name. They put on their own events and parties. Many members stripped their bikes down to resemble race bikes. These bikes continued the tradition started in the 1920’s of making a “bob-job” or “cut-down”.. This type of modification morphed into the “chopper” of the 1960’s.
Today mc patches are generally recognized like this:
• A one-piece patch = Civilian, non-outlaw patch.
• A two-piece patch= Might be outlaw. Might be civilian.
• A three-piece patch= Outlaw patch! Even clubs that are made up of firefighter or cops are made up of members who consider themselves as “bad ass, mf’ers” . The cop clubs are worse than a traditional “outlaw” club. All their members carry guns. Outlaw clubs may beatup people who disrespect them.. Cop clubs just might shoot you and then get their buddies to arrest you, if you survive..
The diamond shaped 1% patch is only worn by some outlaw club members.. This designates a hard core outlaw and all that it implies.. This individual may be a great guy but don’t make the mistake of offending them..The joke will be on you..
Four and Five Piece Patch= Outlaw Club!
Club patches identify who the club is..Up front, out in the open. Most people who self identify are straight forward folks. Most clubs do not wear a patch to intimidate civilians.. Show them respect and life is good.. Don’t touch anything they own without permission (including the door to their clubhouse). You will get yelled at or maybe smacked.. You will find that most clubmembers (yes, even the outlaws) are honorable and work. People join clubs for the botherhood.. A feeling of belonging.. And this is why club members are fiercly loyal to their brothers.