A biker patch or "color" is usually sewn on a vest made of leather or denim to denote the biker's group, organization or gang. These sacred patches are worn with honor and may contain secret symbols that say things about the group or the individual wearing it.
There are basically 3 types of biker patches which come in one, two or three pieces. The one-piece patch symbolizes a motorcycle organization such as Harley Owners Group (HOG) and Honda Riders Club. Two-piece patches are usually used by riding clubs or may symbolize a motorcycle club awaiting the transition to be a full three-piece outlaw club. The three-piece patches symbolize an outlaw motorcycle gang.
Biker patches basically have three parts; the top rocker, the bottom rocker, and the group or gang emblem in the middle. The two crescent shaped rockers display the name of the club on the top and the place or region of the group on the bottom. Sometimes the word MC is placed beside the emblem or rocker to note that it is a Motorcycle Club.
In 1947, the American Motorcycle Association stated that "99% of all of their members are law-abiding citizens and only 1% are Outlaw" following a violent incident in Hollister, California. This gave birth to the One Percenters or Outlaw Motorcycle Clubs. These clubs cut their one piece patches into three to distinguish themselves from the rest of the law-abiding groups. A diamond shaped 1% patch may also be worn with the three piece patch. To show that they are the outlawed 1%.
Biker patches may have a hundred meanings and their symbols can stand for anything. Usually, only bona fide members of the group truly know the meaning behind these emblems. Here are some common symbols and their meanings.
1% – as stated by the AMA, these are the unrecognized outlaw motorcycle groups.
13 – this is used to symbolize the letter M which may stand for several meanings including motorcycle, marijuana, methamphetamine, or a secret meaning only known to the members.
It may also mean "12 jurors and a judge" which symbolizes that they can be judged by nobody. We are our own judge and jurors.
9er – symbolizes that the biker has Native American blood since the 9th letter in the alphabet is I.
Ace of spades – this is a symbol for the bringer of death. It means the rider is willing to kill for the group. Or perhaps he has already.
Bad Influence – shows that the biker is a mad man.
DILLIGAF – this is an acronym for "Do I Look like I Give a F ***"
FF – forever, forever is used with the group's title in the beginning and end, as in the Hell's Angels' AFFA and the Sons of Silence's SFFS
Flags – may be used to denote the group's location or origin.
ITCOB. – this is an acronym for "I Took Care of Business"
MC or MCC- this is an acronym for "Motorcycle Cycle Club"
Men of Mayhem – badges or pins given to members who have killed in the name of the group.
Nomad – used on the bottom rocket denoting a person of no particular address. Only a few can truly live to this title.
Skull and Crossbones – the patch stands for "Respect Few, Fear None". In some cases, the cross bones are replaced by swords.
It may also show that the member has killed someone for the group.
Swastika and Nazi symbols – these does not necessarily mean that the bikers are Nazi, rather, they show that they reject the rules of society.
Wings – these are usually used to show achievements. They may sometimes hold a sexual meaning but these are mostly believed to be jokes.
Red wings shows the biker had oral sex with a menstruating female.
Green wings shows the biker had sexual intercourse with a woman with a sexually transmitted disease.
Yellow wings shows the biker drank a woman's urine.
Purple wings shows the biker had sexual intercourse with a corps
Patches may also show the position of a biker in the gang. This may include president, vice president, secretary and sergeant-at-arms. For outlaw groups, it can only be worn in the territory and has to be surrendered when the biker leaves the group.
No matter what the meaning, the patches are treated with honor and respect for it is a great privilege to have the right to wear the group's emblem and call it their own.