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  1. #1
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    Default Any good reason to join a club?

    Is there any good reason to join a Motorcycle Club? Not a local, quasi-gang, or even a real one. But an actual club like the AMCA. (Just to pick a well known example)

    ?

    Are you in any of them? Are there good benefits, like tech resources.. Or is it good for networking... Or are the members only events out of sight, or.. ?

    Right now, I'm only a member of ABATE. (Who really do good work and deserve the support of everyone on principle, imo. They put a lot of first timers on two wheels and they fight against bullshit laws, but they're not so much a "club")

    As far as actual clubs go, what is your experience with them? Do any of them fit in well with the chopper hobby that you know of?

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    some get ya discounts on parts at selected dealers,
    entry to swap meets early & free,
    usually a good place to find parts of your model bike,.
    usually a rally or meet yearly around the world in some cases,
    a good starting place if ya new to bikes or a particular make & model.
    also a good place to get good deals on bikes for sale........
    & ya never know, it might get ya laid !... (but probably wont !! hahahaha)
    Last edited by tzienlee; 07-19-2021 at 2:52 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tzienlee View Post
    it might get ya laid !...
    I did go back and review the AMCA website after reading this..

  4. #4
    Sugarcubes
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    Guess it depends on what is local to you. There are some country-wide registered official clubs here that as a member would entitle you to discounts on insurance premiums, e-zines, the odd discount on clothing / gear etc but its not like a close knit group of friends who share the same kind of vibe and get together often to ride other than maybe an annual run.

  5. #5
    ptrouton
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    There are a few country-huge registered legitimate golf equipment right here that as a member could entitle you to reductions on coverage premiums. an awesome beginning location if ya new to motorcycles or a selected make & model, additionally an awesome location to get suitable offers on motorcycles for sale

  6. #6

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    Being on the same wavelength among like-minded people is cool! When I was in school, I was constantly a participant in every noisy company. But closer to graduation, I started thinking about goals after high school. I started to get interested in this, used additional resources to figure out who I want to be after graduation, and which college I'm need to go to. And also, should I go where to study at all, or is it better to start working. Now everything is not the way I imagined it, but this is my experience, and I love my life.
    Last edited by Canded; 11-04-2021 at 5:47 AM.

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    As in all things its "Variable",. At one time, in a trial here locally, the Hells Angels were compelled to testify and Sonny Barger was on the stand and said "Its really hard to get anything done by committee or vote" As well, as the local press made fun of him when they asked about kicking people out, and compared the HA to the Mickey Mouse club.

    But he is right. Gather up a bunch of opinionated A-holes, Type A personalities and everyone has an opinion of what people should be doing, but dont want to volunteer or actually do the work. Many people claim, and rightfully so, that 10% do all the work and the rest bitch about it.

    However, and this is a observation that is true no matter what the organization. If you have to fight egos and personalities and run things like a Marine corp boot camp, its not going to be very successful because its no longer fun or enjoyable. The few who do step up quickly get burned out and stop showing up.

    However, If you run things differently, team based and delegate and ASK what people want, need or are interested in, You really win because people WANT to be involved, and enjoy it. A local guy runs some events and I am SO impressed with him. Thor Drake of See See Coffee and Motorcycles. He now has multiple stores, businesses, a bike dealership, product line and runs multiple events that has corporate sponsors who line up to hand him money just so they can be associated with his brand.
    PLUS! He has really motivated friends, helpers and volunteers and his employees LIKE to work for him.

    Think that dude is doing something right? A lot of the crusty cranky old bastards can learn a LOT from a guy like Thor.

    See: https://www.seeseemotorcycles.com/ ( 3 stores-shops in Portland, and another in Reno Nevada)
    See: https://www.seeseemotorcycles.com/pa...-one-moto-show


    So, I have been in, or currently (Im not current on a lot of memberships) the following:
    ABATE, VME (Vintage MC Enthusiasts, PDX Chapter, Club is based out of Seattle) WVM (Washington Vintage MC Club) AMCA (Antique MC of America, generally a regular with the Evergreen chapter but we have a local chapter here in Oregon), OVM- (Oregon Vintage MC) ONE (Oregon Norton Enthusiasts) Formerly NWNO as NW Norton Owners was BC Canada, Idaho, Oregon and Washington but we split off and formed the Oregon chapter. As well as INOA (International Norton Owners Assoc.) NOC,. (UK based Norton wankers). Attended a few local BMW Airheads group Barley Therapy...UK and US divisions of the AJS-Matchless owners club, and likely soon will join the VMCC in the UK for discounted machine dating and other benefits.
    Almost forgot, Buell club,
    And member and volunteer at the NW Vintage car & MC Museum,

    As well, many years ago, but BSA owners club of NorCal, and the Handcrafted automobile association of Oregon. (kit cars and customs) As well as Chevelle & El Camino club of Oregon/national. Ohhhhh, Does 4H count?

    So, it just depends. I can tell you about all kinds of dickheads, jerks and morons in some of these clubs who suck, and I dont like, treat people badly and ruin what is supposed to be fun. BUT........I can also tell you about a ton of really nice, helpful people who will drop things at a moments notice and rescue you, bring you parts or tools or haul your broken down bike home in their pickup. Loan you tools, mentor you, and point you to resources and parts. ANY organization from a Miltary unit, Police dept,Workplace or club has a composite of the good guys (And gals) the OK ones, the peanut gallery and the toxic ones. Its pretty much the same everywhere.

    Sometimes the toxic ones, while a small minority ruin things for everyone. I can tell you a lot of stories about that.

    But often many of these clubs have something to offer, for example some of the clubs like AJS-Matchless run a "Spares scheme" and members are allowed to purchase hard to find parts at discount prices, discount or free literature, decals, stickers, badges and other stuff, and or, Machine dating.

    Many clubs (BSAOC, Goldstar club,AJS & Matchless club, VMCC, NOC, etc etc) will have a service such as "Machine dating officer and registar" And they will take your engine and frame numbers and research it and give you critical data such as date completed at the factory, date it passed testing, the name of the ship it was transported to,. the Importer in the US, the dealership who sold it and tell you what it left the factory as and what parts were outfitted.

    For example, On several of my Goldstar BSAs, I have all that data, and copies of the handwritted testing certificate as every Goldstar is hand built and dyno tested. All specs are noted on the card and then the fitter signs his name. I HAVE that!

    For really collectible bikes (Norton, Goldstars, Triumphs) A dating certificate and these details of what is called "Provenance" makes it even more valuable. A REAL numbers matching legit bike is worth bank... but with so many fakes out there, when you go the extra mile to prove your bike is correct and the real deal, its worth it.
    The joke is "Triumph made approximately 2500 TT and T120C models a year during the production run from 63-67, However ONLY 5250 machines of each year exist today!"

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    A 59 Bonnie? One year only special? Beware of fakes! A real one is worth big money!

    https://www.vmcc.net/Factory-Records

    " FACTORY RECORDS

    Following the generous gift of all the original factory records held by the science museum we now hold the surviving records of a very large part of the once mighty British motorcycle industry. We hold Ariel, BSA, Douglas Vespa, Gilera (c 1971-4), Levis, Norton, Royal Enfield up to 1920, Scott, Triumph, Velocette pre RS frames and late Zenith.
    From the following factories:

    Ariel,
    BSA,
    Douglas Vespa,
    Garelli
    Gilera
    Levis,
    Norton,
    Royal Enfield Up to 1920,
    Scott,
    Triumph,
    Velocette (pre RS frames) and late Zenith
    We do not photocopy any of the factory records

    If you would like the full factory record, we will need a side view photograph of the machine and either rubbings or photographs of the engine and frame numbers.

    The cost is £37.50 (£25.00 if a member) typed on a certificate plus £2.50 postage for overseas.
    You can pay by card, cheque, postal order (made payable to VMCC Ltd) or by PayPal.
    Members Non-Members
    Typed Factory record £25.00 £37.50
    Factory record search £10.00 (2 Free a year) £10.00"

    https://www.vmcc.net/Library (Treasure trove of data)

    https://www.jampot.com/Spares.asp

    " How it works: The prime aim of the Club Spares Scheme is to help you all keep your machines on the road. We try to do this by purchasing suitable, reasonable quality second-hand spares, and more importantly, having unobtainable parts made. Some may query why we also stock items available elsewhere, such as gaskets and the like, but obviously these quick moving parts enable us to build up funds to pay for the tooling and manufacture of non-existent ones.

    A Spares Scheme Price List is available to all members via a download option, with additions and amendments published periodically in the club magazine. It is impractical to list our second-hand stocks, as many are held on a one or two off basis, but a separate note of your requirements in this respect (with a stamped addressed envelope), giving as much information as possible, will then enable us to let you know if we can help, the cost and an accurate description of its condition and serviceability. Such enquiries should not be made on an Order Form. All used items are sold 'as is' and are not returnable.

    The Vincent club makes almost enough NEW parts you could build a brand new Vincent from the clubs spares scheme if you can afford it.

    But some clubs run really cool events and ONLY allow members. The VME is this way and some of the events are so popular that they keep the dates and times secret to keep the public from showing up as otherwise its TOO popular. The annual "Isle of Vashon TT" is this way. A super cool event, it was over run by obnoxious sport bike riders, Do-rag wearing Harley riders in chaps, and general idiots that the event was nearly cancelled as, the Isle of Vashon is not very big. But sometimes you can be TOO successful.

    Some of these clubs hold regional and national or even international rallies, members only. The BSAOC does a International and held in different countries every year. A friend has traveled to Australia, NZ, Japan, Switzerland, Germany, Italy, UK and South Africa and as well, rode cross country to attend the US events. (He rode from Calif Bay area to East coast on his BSA, with his wife on the back, and got hungry on the way back so went to New Orleans for Jumbalaya, before returning to Calif.) He showed me pictures of riding across the swiss Alps and the Italian Alps on that BSA as well.
    https://www.bsaownersclub.co.uk/interrally.php

    63 2026 New Zealand -
    62 2025 Denmark -
    61 2024 Norway -
    60 2023 South Australia -
    59 2022 Belgium Theux
    58 2021 Germany Cancelled due to Covid-19
    57 2020 Czech Republic Louti Lake Slapy
    56 2019 Great Britain Moreton in Marsh

    https://inoanorton.com/ 2021 was supposed to be up in Lumby BC Canada, and I was looking forward to riding around the base of the Canadian Rockies. Canadians know how to party!
    At the 2016 INOA rally in NorCal, Quincy I was a tech speaker and gave a talk about the Modern Nortons, Norton America, and the development of them with the unique chapter Oregon played in the Norton history. I have a very nice award from the INOA for "Contributions to the Norton community" and got a standing ovation (Although I suspect some people were cheering I finally shut up!) I also had prototypes of the bikes and parts, company literature and all sorts of secret stuff most people dont know.

    Some insurance companies give discounts as well if you have club memberships.
    I could go on & on, But you get the point? As I said. Its variable.

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    Since Im a motor mouth, let me give you a metaphor that, I truly believes defines almost anything you do, or participate in. Its very much applicable to business or organizational mgmt, or running a club, swap meet, bike show or, Chopper cult forum???

    So, Years back I got laid off from an Aerospace manuf. job, Because they laid so many of us off, they had to pay the state to offer job retraining and education to the laid off workers. I had been told by the FAA that I had more than enough experience via the military to pass my FAA mechanics and inspection exams for my A&P federal license (Airframe & Powerplant).
    BUT..... they felt I would really benefit from taking some civilian aviation classes especially for FARS, which is the FAA regulations and rules.
    So I signed up for some classes in a aviation school locally.

    I DID learn a lot! However at one point we had an old guy named Harold who used to run the local Cessna factory service center. Smart guy and seen it & done it all, certainly saw guys like me come and go.

    So, during a Ignitions course I had to rebuild the magnetos (Multiple ones) and install and time them on a 18 cylinder Radial engine. (2 banks of 9 cyls each) Not an easy job and there was tricks to it and everyone failed the first attempt. some people it took weeks to get it right.
    So I was really REALLY proud, I got it on the second try. That thing was purring as much as a Radial can. (Odd number of cyls and firing means Radials have a unique noise and you have to split the difference to get the timing right).

    I cant stress how complicated this is, So I was PROUD! Old Harold comes over, makes a lot of dismissive gestures, and then making fun of me says the most profound thing anyone has ever said.
    "Doug, Does this engine run BECAUSE of you? Or........In SPITE of you?"

    Man, Was I pissed off! But, over time, I realized that was some heavy shit right there. What he said was profound.

    Think about it. Does it run BECAUSE of you or in SPITE of you?

    Now,. how many F**Ked up companies or workplaces do you know of? Events ruined by incompetence? Businesses that were started and built up but then destroyed by the owners kids?

    Do they run BECAUSE of you? or in SPITE of you? Clubs and events are NO different. Some coast along on perpetual motion, but if you look carefully, this is true in everything.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Does this engine run BECAUSE of you? Or........In SPITE of you?"
    Fucking gold. Imma steal that one.

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    In Spite of you...

    [Observation] something that causes vexation; annoyance.
    In spite of, in disregard or defiance of; notwithstanding; despite: He assembled, & timed the engine despite its difficulty.

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    I can see the advantage with some of the machines you deal with, Doug. I dunno if there's a comparable level of value for me and my mongrel bikes?

    I was looking at the AMCA. I'm not really interested in organized rides or competitions, or any of that. Networking for parts would be good, though. I like their swap meets. Limited to old bikes, you see a lot of stuff that you would never otherwise see. They seem to promote an adult atmosphere, also. Events so disciplined you can take small children, and many people do.

    But he is right. Gather up a bunch of opinionated A-holes, Type A personalities and everyone has an opinion of what people should be doing, but dont want to volunteer or actually do the work. Many people claim, and rightfully so, that 10% do all the work and the rest bitch about it.
    lol.. That's so true. Never been to an AMCA anything till Wasseon, last year. We're resting on a bench and what do I hear? Some of this higher ups are standing a few feet away, bitching like school girls over the internal politics of the place.

    "And.. And then.. And then, motherfucker just joined and he shows up and a meeting with them and they want.. "

    lol. OMZ.. CATTY!

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    I cant advise what kind of Club experience anyone would have outside my regional area, It just depends on the personalities of those running things, and how well you fit in.

    I wrote all that based on the variables as many people would read this. Some clubs I am in dont like choppers or customs., The local guzzi club said that another club, the OVM are "A bunch of anal retentive bolt polishers" and thats not true of all of that club, but I laughed because I DID know exactly who they were talking about. * One guy especially, We think his sock and underwear drawer is another level of OCD organized, as is everything he comes across.
    So, funny thing, That guy, freaks out and highly insecure gets mad if people dont fawn all over him or someones bike gets more attention. So, a local nut job Jeff, After being insulted about his ratty daily rider, went to a fabric store and bought Tartan Plaid fabric and covered the fenders and tank in it. Was proud too! The only Tartan Plaid Norton I have ever seen. Of course, I think the OCD guys blood pressure went ballistic.

    Anyrate, Some local vintage people I really like, however, Im not universally popular, (Shocking) or well liked.

    ** IN fact, My name-tag here is one I have used because of local drama, A guy mistakenly included me in a group CC email and said "Doug is just an internet annoyance" So I started using that and that mad them even more angry.

    I have been going to the Washington Regional AMCA event, the Evergreen Chapter Tenino swap and show (Club ride too) and its one of my favorite events of the year. We get alot of Canadians as well who show up. Been going to it since 1990 when I returned from overseas. The Oregon Trail chapter, I know a lot of the members, But, admittedly have not been as active with them. But I am in a lot of clubs, and I generally rather spend my free time in the shop, Used to a lot more with ABATE as well years ago,, but again, Not as active.

    But events have changed a lot. We had some really great events, and many dont exist anymore. ABATE used to have great bands at their runs, Seen Steppenwolf multiple times, Dr Hook & the Medicine show, Little Charlie & the Nightcats, Molly Hatchet, and many more...

    But we have other stuff thats happening that didnt exist years ago. A friend said it best about competing clubs and events.,..
    "Those who throw the best parties win"

    But with all the petty drama from some clubs-members, the least of it is with our local museum and 98% really nice people to work with who all really positive, very little drama. So I focus in on that.

    It is what you make it. Also your priorities.... Some people are all about riding,. Some, are more interested in building or tech, I was in a car club that was "Handcrafted Automobile Association" and customs, hot rods and kit cars. What I wanted and joined for is spend a day at Bobs house or Steves shop learning welding tricks, How to do better fiberglass, or engine building. We had about 5 of us that thought that way... But the majority were all about "Fall colors driving tours" or attending the Oregon Shakespeare theatre in their Kit cars.... (WTF??) so, we did have some cool tech sessions at a race car shop, but I couldnt have cared less about some of it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by confab View Post
    Is there any good reason to join a Motorcycle Club? Not a local, quasi-gang, or even a real one. But an actual club like the AMCA. (Just to pick a well known example)

    ?

    Are you in any of them? Are there good benefits, like tech resources.. Or is it good for networking... Or are the members only events out of sight, or.. ?

    Right now, I'm only a member of ABATE. (Who really do good work and deserve the support of everyone on principle, imo. They put a lot of first timers on two wheels and they fight against bullshit laws, but they're not so much a "club")

    As far as actual clubs go, what is your experience with them? Do any of them fit in well with the chopper hobby that you know of?
    Iíve always hoped for a chopper riding/building club in my area if thatís even a thing, but no such luck. I hang around with a bunch of 1% local guys but that has more to do with a lot of them being high school buddies and the reality always seems like itís more of a drinking club with a motorcycle habit then the inverse situation which is what Iíd prefer. Always wanted to find the right group though, as I enjoy the company of other enthusiasts. The Freemasons are also intriguing, met a lot of men over the years that really impressed me who belonged to that organization.

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dougtheinternetannoyance123 View Post
    I cant advise what kind of Club experience anyone would have outside my regional area, It just depends on the personalities of those running things, and how well you fit in.

    I wrote all that based on the variables as many people would read this. Some clubs I am in dont like choppers or customs., The local guzzi club said that another club, the OVM are "A bunch of anal retentive bolt polishers" and thats not true of all of that club, but I laughed because I DID know exactly who they were talking about. * One guy especially, We think his sock and underwear drawer is another level of OCD organized, as is everything he comes across.
    So, funny thing, That guy, freaks out and highly insecure gets mad if people dont fawn all over him or someones bike gets more attention. So, a local nut job Jeff, After being insulted about his ratty daily rider, went to a fabric store and bought Tartan Plaid fabric and covered the fenders and tank in it. Was proud too! The only Tartan Plaid Norton I have ever seen. Of course, I think the OCD guys blood pressure went ballistic.

    Anyrate, Some local vintage people I really like, however, Im not universally popular, (Shocking) or well liked.

    ** IN fact, My name-tag here is one I have used because of local drama, A guy mistakenly included me in a group CC email and said "Doug is just an internet annoyance" So I started using that and that mad them even more angry.

    I have been going to the Washington Regional AMCA event, the Evergreen Chapter Tenino swap and show (Club ride too) and its one of my favorite events of the year. We get alot of Canadians as well who show up. Been going to it since 1990 when I returned from overseas. The Oregon Trail chapter, I know a lot of the members, But, admittedly have not been as active with them. But I am in a lot of clubs, and I generally rather spend my free time in the shop, Used to a lot more with ABATE as well years ago,, but again, Not as active.

    But events have changed a lot. We had some really great events, and many dont exist anymore. ABATE used to have great bands at their runs, Seen Steppenwolf multiple times, Dr Hook & the Medicine show, Little Charlie & the Nightcats, Molly Hatchet, and many more...

    But we have other stuff thats happening that didnt exist years ago. A friend said it best about competing clubs and events.,..
    "Those who throw the best parties win"

    But with all the petty drama from some clubs-members, the least of it is with our local museum and 98% really nice people to work with who all really positive, very little drama. So I focus in on that.

    It is what you make it. Also your priorities.... Some people are all about riding,. Some, are more interested in building or tech, I was in a car club that was "Handcrafted Automobile Association" and customs, hot rods and kit cars. What I wanted and joined for is spend a day at Bobs house or Steves shop learning welding tricks, How to do better fiberglass, or engine building. We had about 5 of us that thought that way... But the majority were all about "Fall colors driving tours" or attending the Oregon Shakespeare theatre in their Kit cars.... (WTF??) so, we did have some cool tech sessions at a race car shop, but I couldnt have cared less about some of it.
    I got to the tenino swap every year since I found out about it 3 years ago!
    I don't have a vintage bike at the moment but I like to ride.
    Ran into a dude with a shovelhead chop this weekend who talked about planning rides and trips.

    That would be my reason to join some kinda club.
    Wrench on shit, ride more than just to 3 shit hole bars in town. Do fun shit. Learn some shit from other people.

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    I have been in England for far too long (30 odd years now !!) to know how things are Stateside,
    but here in Europe, there are many MC & non MC clubs & group's who are purely into chops and extreem customs, to mild street racers,
    The N.C.C (National Chopper Club) for example are ordenary everyday bikers, no chips on their shoulders or attitudes, & with a love of building & riding chops,
    little formality, realy a group of like minded friends helping each other, they hold custom shows all over England where everyone of the same mind set is invited & more than welcome to meet up for great party weekends, tech help, paint help, fab help welders, between all their members they have access to just about all forms of engineering for their builds and you get access to some of the best engineers in the bike world,
    if thats your idea of something you'd be in to, look out for a simular type club Stateside near you, & if none exist... look at starting one... you'll soon get like minded people wanting the same thing knocking at ya door,... If ya want in with a 1% MC club, I am not qualified to comment there. but Respect goes a long way. & any 1% clubs near you should respectfully be approached to explain your idea of a 'Chop builders & riders group', and dont want to tread on toes or piss people off........
    Last edited by tzienlee; 11-03-2021 at 7:00 PM.

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