Posts tagged custom club patch
On March 19 2012 Air Force Captain Ben Ward arrived in Colfax, North Carolina after completing a deployment in Afghanistan. Fully expecting to quietly head home, Ward was surprised when an entire contingent of Patriot Guard motorcycle riders met him and escorted him and his family to their house. Throughout the emotional experience and the inevitable media interviews that followed, Capt. Ward was visibly touched and had to fight back tears.
The love, honor, and show of support from the Patriot Guard that evening is nothing new. They are a nationally organized motorcycle club whose mission is to support troops and their family members by providing escorts and standing with them at funeral services, welcome home gatherings, and so on. The group is most often known for providing “protection” against disruption of military funerals. But every now and again we see them doing what they did in Colfax.
The Patriot Guard custom club patch features a golden triangle against a blue background with white stars in the middle and the slogan “Standing for Those Who Stood for US” underneath. And while there appears to be no special significance attached to his design, the use of the pyramid clearly demonstrates the group’s belief that our entire nation benefits because of the service of just a few.
Even though you don’t have to own a motorcycle to be a member of the Patriot Guard they are similar to other motorcycle clubs in that you can’t simply go down to the store and buy a patch. You must be a recognized member in good standing and you must wear it according to the organizations guidelines; a rule that is much more important for the Patriot Guard because of what they stand for and what they do.
In 1965 the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club was still a fairly new entity on the American motorcycle scene. So new, in fact, that the average American was barely aware of their existence unless one of the fledgling chapters existed in their town. In order to find out what they were all about, and capture the day-to-day life of a Hells Angels member, Life magazine sent staff writer Joe Bride and a photographer by the name of Bill Ray to spend a week with the Hells Angels in California.
Unfortunately, due to a disagreement among editors the story and its accompanying photographs were never published in Life Magazine. The good news is that Time Life recently decided to release the photographs on their website along with a very brief description of some of the events of that week. It is a captivating look into what the Hells Angels were way back in the early days of the organization. In most of the pictures the Angels look like regular Joe’s, while in other cases you can see members with full colors on their backs.
Not much has changed about the club since those photos were taken some 46 years ago. Even the Angels custom club patch remains nearly identical to what was in the early days. New recruits had to earn their full patches back then, and they still do today, which is why you can’t simply go down to the store and buy one off the shelf.
The Hells Angels are a proud group of bikers that take their name and brotherhood seriously. Since those early days the 1960s they have grown and expanded to be one of the largest motorcycle clubs around the world.
Most of the time motorcycle clubs have one official custom club patch distributed among its members. However, the Coffin Cheaters appear to have two. The more well known is a simple coffin with a red NAZI German flag draped over it. The other patch features the number 33 against a wall of flames, all surrounded by a diamond. I don’t know for sure but I suspect it was designed in 1999 to celebrate the club’s 33rd anniversary.
The Coffin Cheaters were originally established in Long Beach, California in the 1960s. Their Cleveland chapter was established in 1963 and eventually became the headquarters when the Long Beach chapter patched over to another club. Despite the fact that there are other clubs using the Coffin Cheaters name today, unless they emanate from Long Beach or Cleveland they’re not part of the original club. Today the Coffin Cheaters are fairly small by comparison even though they have members in six states.
Every motorcycle club is unique in some way – the Coffin Cheaters are no exception. With this club there are no prospects whatsoever. In other words, you cannot join the club by performing any specific tasks or rituals. You must be born into the club or be a blood relative of an existing member. The only exception is for a non-member who hangs with the club for at least five years and gets a 100% vote of approval among existing membership to be fully-patched. This is difficult to do, so it’s rare.
The Coffin Cheaters patch is also rare. Nonetheless, they get their custom club patches by ordering them through a patch distributor like The Cheap Place. You can do the same if you have any sort of club that would benefit from being identified by a custom club patch. If you want to shop with The Cheap Place all you need to do is submit your design. Just be aware that it must be original – The Cheap Place is not authorized to reproduce custom patches from existing groups without explicit permission.