Joining a Motorcycle Club

If you're thinking of joining a motorcycle club here's a small bit of info about a very tiny part of my experience that might help.
I've been in and around motorcycle clubs since my early teens, I wasn't born into it but easily found my way forward.

Being a Biker was meant to be, it was in my blood and I knew my father and grandfather had bikes in the past but nothing from when I was born, I guess I was just a natural born biker and joining a motorcycle club was the right path for me.

Joining a Motorcycle Club

If you're thinking of joining a motorcycle club & wearing or as we bikers say, 'flying' a patch you usually expect to become brothers eventually by showing trust & loyalty to the club and members but that's not always foreseen.

I've been in and around several motorcycle clubs gaining plenty of experience from front & full back patch clubs, MCC to 1%ers and despite the bickering and ups & downs I've seen or experienced, I've never had a real problem and can honestly say its been the best times of my life.


I've since moved on from one bad experience in quite a large international club that I had put everything into but found the right path by putting that time behind me.

I helped form another club, became president of a chapter and spent a few years riding & knowing that the guys by my side always had my back. 100% dedication and loyalty to each other, something I'd never really known of before when joining a motorcycle club.

This was the life for me but unfortunately poor health forced me to retire from club a few years later, but I was still me and my brothers are always there for me, despite having to part with my bike, I am a biker always & forever!

Being a Biker

I love the clubs scene, I class myself as being a biker as many people that ride will do on custom builds, chops & Harleys. However there are many others that don't and generally ride sports bikes (Plastic Crap) or scooters & mopeds etc.

Bikers are generally known as having long hair, long beards, wear leather jackets & filthy jeans and cause mayhem in every town or village we rode to! Well that was the case 40 years ago when I started life as a biker officially early in the early 70's but things change.

I used to wear the 'originals' the unwashed Levi jeans thick in crap and ripped so always had to wear a half decent pair of jeans underneath, even then the dirty oil use to get through to my skin.

Steel capped wellies or jackboots with fisherman's socks, cuts usually in denim as it was cheap and far easier to cover in studs, chains and badges. I also used to have a postman's (I think it was but it could have been anything as long as it looked right) hat with the sides pinned down to look Nazi style and of course covered in studs and chains for under the chin. A lot of the gear we used to nick from pet shops or army surplus stores, once a Saturday as my old man would find and burn my cut-off most weeks.

A biker nowadays is more likely to have a skin head, be clean shaven or sport a small goatee, smell of aftershave, wear shiny leather trousers and behave, depending on how many beers or JD's have been sunk! Fortunately there's still plenty of old school boys alive & riding, they have my utmost respect.

Other motorcyclists like to be known as just that or as a rider but a biker to me is part of belonging to a very large group of like minded people. Most are very friendly and will do anything to help each other. I have met hundreds of bikers in my years and many I would class as good friends or even now as brothers including 1%ers.

Self Employed

I was in manufacturing for most of my working life, sheet metal as an employee and after several years in 1992, I decided to try out a few ideas. I borrowed a small fly press from the company I was working for, made a small press tool and started knocking out a clip I'd invented for farm crates. Next thing I was renting floor space in a unit with a couple of machines I'd made out of bits and pieces. 

So, I set up my own small company and went self employed. Six years later I had put my former boss out of business & his competition. However due to a bike accident and several years of working like a dog in a back breaking job, my back eventually said that's enough.

So, I retired to the office and spent some of my time working on our website, then I built a website for Bull Trikes up in Scotland who was building me a trike in return. However the idiot hit the vodka hard, started to lose business and like several others, got no trike. I felt sorry for those who had laid out so much money even though I'd spent hours working on the fcukin Bull Trikes website.

Couple of my brothers paid him a visit, but he was in such a state, his wife explained how bad things were, that there was nothing left, so they left.

I built another website for the club I was in at the time, I think it was one of the free ones like GeoCities. I felt rewarded for my work but got fcuk all thanks from the others.

I built another 1 or 2 sites for others until I decided on building one for myself. I couldn't register Arnie (Thanks to that Arnold from the US of A) so settled for arn1e.

This site was booming for a few years but I lost interest, health had worsened, let things slide and concentrated more on a business site which I've been working so hard on, long hours that there's been little time in my life to do anything else.

However, I needed a break and as the club scene is of great interest to me, this website was the ideal solution and so I'm still tidying things up and doing most of the things you're supposed to do. You will notice a gradual change heading towards a bright new look, it's a forever ongoing process.

Health & Retirement

I had a Sportster custom 1430 chop, but the pain in my back had gotten too bad to go any further than a mile up the road to the service station. Very sad to see her go and just knew that I would probably never ride again and 8 years after selling on I sill haven't but even without the back issues I have evolved other health shit to deal with.

I've got an implanted loop recorder in my chest and the doc monitoring it says my heart rate drops to 40 and peaks around 240 bpm, its under control now but I still have the device in my chest which must be over 4 years now since early 2018. I've had a stroke which wasn't so bad as I never knew until they scanned my brain, the speech part showed some damage I remember a doc saying and this was only brought to light as I had a mini stroke (TIA) while sitting in local doctors surgery and then another not so long after.

Also in the last 14 years I've told I have bronchiectasis, TMJ/D, cervical & spine spondylosis, degenerative discs, crumbling vertebrae, (Six lower lumber fractures from a bike RTA I think when I was about 30 odd, never healed and look bigger than ever on the x-ray screen) ME-CFS, AFIB, fibromyalgia, corneal dystrophy, chronic anxiety & tinnitus, depression & insomnia (surprise), overloaded CNS, damaged vagus nerve from an oesophagus wrap (Nissen fundoplication) operation, dysautonomia, peripheral neuropathy, osteoarthritis, arthritis and the latest is gut related but as of 25th Nov 2023 I'm still waiting 15 months later to see a gastrologist.

FTW, life's a bitch and then you die.

Anyway I hope you like the website, I built it though it has been a learning curb this WordPress platform maybe much easier to use but, it's also very easy to bugger up as I've found on several occasion, 20 years ago I could have built this blindfolded but I suffer with brain fog so everything I do now is a struggle and a doubt that I'll ever be able to ride again or even be in position of joining another motorcycle club.

I think I'm getting the hang of this WordPress now though and have applied several improvements over the last few weeks and will continue to do so.

With Respect, Ride Safe, Stay Safe, Be Healthy & Enjoy Life. LL&R

Drop me a line in the comments and say Hi.


joining a motorcycle club

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14/10/2023 01:14

Nice website but when i clicked joining a motorcycle club i expected the steps involved including time periods etc to getting in not your background story which would be better in a section named about me. Also under A-Z you could create a google map with the main location of each uk club as i have no idea where they are based. I have seen a few clubs at rallies but they mainly keep to themselves so i have no idea how someone wanting to get into it would go about it as again the section joining a motorcycle club is not about that

12/06/2023 09:27

Complete poser. Deleting comments calling you out for it proves it further. Make believe biker and a coward

11/06/2023 16:35

This rant reads as “I am the best ever and for some reason no one believes how great I am”
Yam pathetic mate.

James Fletcher
James Fletcher
25/10/2022 19:24

Good write-up. Interesting read.
I have been out of the UK since the late 90’s working in conflict and post-conflict countries but now returned to Cumbria. When possible I run with a Spanish club called Calamity Jayne over in Spain but as backing not as a fully patched member due to my time away working overseas. I was interested to learn from your article that some clubs don’t have your back. I am an ex squaddie working in the private military sector and sometimes in the humanitarian sector as part of a rapid disaster response team. I now reside in Carlisle and having been away from the UK scene I am looking for an MC club that is not full of wankers. I am looking for brotherhood and a sense of belonging. I am curious as to which MC you might recommend and which was your club that you found. I have a couple of bikes a Triumph Bobber and a HD electraglide.


24/09/2022 08:30

Hi Annie, great read. I have been riding bikes most of my life growing uo on a farm and years of motor cross. I’m yet to get my bike licence but would live to join the viking mc.

I love my vikings history and have been obsessed since a kid. I’m 33 and live in Hampshire. I work full time as a hgv driver.

When you join the club what is expected from you at all times? How often do you meet etc. I look forward to hearing back from you. Cheers, Lee

Mark Lawton
Mark Lawton
20/09/2022 21:36

I read your write up. It was awesome! I’m not a 1% er but in another life maybe. I certainly admire them!

I’m sorry to read about your misfortune and health issues, what you wrote is good reading though.

I’m reading Frank Thorleys books. I’m through the second one now. Awesome read! Scary stuff tho bu I get the impression that if you’re an ok guy you’ll be ok with the Angels if you respect their ways and today they’re mellowed out more.

I’m just a little gutted tho that some MC groups don’t like others. It’s a shame that really.

I’m a tad biased to 81 support so obviously I wouldn’t affiliate with the opposition while this is the case.

L&R and thanks for the interesting read!

brian stuart
brian stuart
16/09/2022 07:13

Well we did move to Poland, and what a nice country it is to live in, I have found a great bike shop ( moto frog ) in Opole, and they did a great job on my Harley Sportster 1200, they put it through the Polish test for me and it is now on a Polish plate, there is a great bike event called the Polish bike week, it is a very good event, put on by the Harley club in Wroclaw, but bike of all kinds come and are made very welcome, and in the parade we saw bike of all sizes, trike,s mopeds, and scooters, with 2 music stages, lots of food and camping at the event, and the event is Free?? so a big well done to the bikers who put the event on for all of their bikes friends.

Warning Warning

The (market place ) on Facebook has people trying to steal your money, please take note, they steal photo,s of bikes, quads, and other equipment, they are all fake,
They take deposits and try to get more ( the remaining balance ) using foreign bank accounts, and fake Facebook accounts,
I know people who have lost money in Poland, France, and the UK.
and then they find out that you can,t contact Facebook ??? to tell them about a theft,
you can report it as a scam but they pop up a few weeks later and can start all over again, so please take care.

camp 1.jpg
15/09/2022 10:22

Thanks for your efforts with a interesting web site. I’m in the process of joking an MC at the age of 55. Have always been around bikes but life and work never gave me the time to join a club. So far the club I’m with have been very welcoming but have a strict protocol,the members come from all walks of life and will help each other in anyway possible. I have a little advantage as I build and restore motorcycles.If people are interested I will update my journey from prospect to full member.

John Andrew Duncan
John Andrew Duncan
22/02/2022 10:58

I want to to learn everything I can

Suzanne North
Suzanne North
19/04/2021 21:44

Just wanted to say thank you for mentioning my dad. Hope you’re doing ok. Life has a funny way of turning out and you just have to roll with the punches.

Reply to  Suzanne North
20/04/2021 17:16

My dad’s Derrick

brian stuart
brian stuart
29/08/2019 10:31

Hi, I am in Poland with my Polish wife in Opole, and I saw your site, I have found that with this age thing it gets harder and harder to be a biker, my best biking friend and brother Mike was taken by cancer, he took me to see easy rider in 1970 and that set us off, and my other friends have all given up due to old age, but not me we are just back from the Rock roof event in the alps, on my 1200 Sportster with trailer, I live in France just now and we hope to move to Poland next year, good health my friend

john kellam
john kellam
28/08/2019 14:53

Respect to you for opening up to the world! Biker life has changed radically since the 60’s & 70’s. Not always for the best I think. We need people who there to share thoughts and history. Thanks.

Geoff Jones
Geoff Jones
06/07/2019 00:27

Hi Arnie, wow – massive respect. I been ‘biking’ since ’75 and worked my way up through the cc’s. I served for over 12 years in the RAF, after release retrained in IT. Had a 20+ yr break from bikes and now been back for just over a year. Current ride is a 1981 GL1100, starting to find that I am no longer a young pup and all the stuff I put my body through is now catching up with me. hey-ho. Best regards.

Reply to  Geoff Jones
06/07/2019 00:36

Hi Geoff, I’ve been on the road since 76, or had been should I say. Age catches up with us all but some are luckier than others when it comes to health. Much Respect Geoff.

Barry Paginton
Barry Paginton
28/06/2019 22:14

Hi, I served in the Royal Signals as a reserve and would like to become a member of your club. If at all possible could you could you send me some information please. Regards, Barry Paginton.

Neville hogarth
Neville hogarth
25/06/2019 15:31

Id just like to say a massive respect to you. You are a true insparation to people everywere and you never give up. You are a trooper thank you for sharing your life with us god bless you. yours neville hogarth lone rider .

Reply to  Neville hogarth
25/06/2019 21:48

Thank you so much for your king words Neville.

Mark Anthony Bent
Mark Anthony Bent
15/08/2017 13:30

I Am Disabled And Unable To Ride . Been Very Ill Myself . But I Love Bikes And Love The Idea Of Brotherhood. I Look For Loyalty And I Give Loyalty Back . To Me Nothing Else Matters

Reply to  Mark Anthony Bent
06/06/2019 18:08

I hear you Mark!

owen wacey
owen wacey
29/06/2017 22:47

Hi Arnie, great tribute Arnie, just like a true Brother would post. My name’s Owen

I hope to get back on the scene asap (currently bikeless) but also disabled myself; was diagnosed with Gulf War Sickness and chronic MS back in 2003, osteporosis, knackered patella, crumbling disc in my spine and the lobe at the top of my right lung has calcified. No problem, crack on, life’s a piece of piss right?

Once I do get a bike, I’d like to join Gravesend MC (if you accept a disabled rider?) after I’ve joined NABD. Because of balance problems (and no feeling in my right arm & both legs), I was looking at a bike-to-trike conversion but’d need a second mortgage; that bein the caseI’d probably have to opt for either the Flatshifter Max or Expert Dualever (I’ll have to get more info from NABD when the time comes)

Anyways, take care brother, I’ll be at the fund-raiser the the Railway in Sole Street on 8th July, buy a club t-shirt (if that’s ok?) and buy you an ale.

Take care buddy

Reply to  owen wacey
06/06/2019 18:11

Hey Owen, good to hear from you but sorry about your health issues. I’m well retired from club now, it’s a struggle just to get out of the house!
Much Respect Buddy

Jock Agnew
Jock Agnew
31/05/2017 21:55

Dunno if you still kick around here Arnie but all the best and good luck.

Reply to  Jock Agnew
06/06/2019 18:13

Hey Bro, I know I’ve not replied to any messages until now, been busy but intend to keep on top from now on.
Hope you’re well wherever you may roam.

Phillip Carless
Phillip Carless
24/10/2016 02:13

Just a salute Arnie, good work. Am only just seeing how biking can work (from the sidelines as don’t trust easily), whilst renovating a bike. Although had a bike for many years, have been biased away from clubs as they have a darker reputation than I could handle. It is a reflection of my bias that shows my stupidity when I read posts similar to yours, and attend meets, and realise that I could well have missed a richer more colourful life if I…. so, good health to you and yours.

Reply to  Phillip Carless
06/06/2019 18:16

Hey Phillip, thanks for your kind words.
Yes it’s a good idea to start hanging around where the family type of club get together to find your feet.
It’s a great way of life, best path I choose many years ago.

Take Care