Biker patches are used to denote a biker’s club affiliation. They are typically worn at the back of a vest. Apart from signifying the club membership, bikers use the patch design and color to say something about themselves too.
There are no specific rules on how these patches are designed. Often though, a one piece patch signifies motorcycle associations while the two piece patch means the rider is a member of a biker’s club.
The three piece design is known as the outlaw motorcycle club patch. Outlaw motorcycle clubs are biker groups that are not officially recognized by the American Motorcycle Association.
The three piece biker patches have crescent shapes above and below the club logo. These crescent shapes are known as rockers. However, not all bikers who don three piece patches belong to motorcycle outlaw clubs, which sometimes lead to confusion.
The 1% and #13 Patches
The 1% patch is worn by outlaw bikers in reference to a statement by the American Motorcycle association that 99% of custom iron on patches American bikers abide by the law. This refers to the belief that outlaw bikers are criminals.
In response to the 1% patch, some bikers wear 99% patches to express their membership in an officially recognized club.
The #13 patches stand for the letter M, the 13th letter in the alphabet. The M stands for marijuana, meaning the biker takes or sells drugs.
Other Types of Biker Patches
The 9 or 9er patch means the rider has Indian blood. The letter “I” is the ninth letter in the alphabet, hence the number. The Ace of Spades means the biker will fight for their right to the death; a flag patch can refer to family lineage or the country where the bike came from.
MC or MCC means motorcycle club while the President patch is worn by the rider who holds that position in a club. There are also memorial patches. These patches have messages like “in memory of…” These can be worn anywhere by the biker, not just the back of the vest.
More Biker Patches and their Meanings
Patches with wings can mean different things, but most of the time it stands for achievements made by the biker within the club. In some cases the wings and their colors could refer to criminal or sexual acts. A biker who wears a patch made of skull and crossbones is saying they’ve cheated death or killed someone.
Other patches denote their position in the club, like Vice President, Secretary or Sergeant at Arms. Some patches are made up of road names. The road name patch is the moniker given to the biker by a higher authority in the club.
The Men of Mayhem patch is given to bikers who have performed violent acts for the club. The same meaning is attached to the I.T.C.O.B (“I Took Care of Business”) patch.
Biker patches are employed primarily for establishing a biker’s association. But as the preceding information makes clear, these patches can and often reveal much more than that.