Living By The Code: Rules That All Hells Angels Have To Follow
The Hells Angels biker club is so famous that people from outside of States have heard about them. They are one of the most well-known biker clubs globally, and it all started in far 1948. A group of motorcyclists in Fontana, California, decided to form a group that now counts hundreds of international charters.
They are known for many different reasons, and some of them have been known to break the law, but there is one law that they will always respect and follow: their own. Hells Angels rules are no joke. They have a rule for almost everything, from what they wear and drive to how they get and stay in the club. Read on to see how their world is organized.
30. You Have To Be Voted Into The Group
Becoming a Hells Angels member is a few years of a long procedure. The main reason for this long procedure is because Hells Angels are serious when it comes to their membership – once you join, you are there for life.
Cultivating a relationship with the other members requires time. Even on their website, it stated that you have to ask how to get into a club, then you “probably won’t understand the answer.” Basically, the only thing that can determine if you’re ready to join this club is if the rest of the group votes you in.
29. Before You’re In, You’re A “Prospect”
Julian Sher, an investigative journalist, claims that those who want to join this motorbike group have to go through certain chapters. The very first chapter is so-called a “hang around.”
Hang around are bikers who get invited to some Hell Angeles events and parties, so both sides can get to know each other and see if they would be a good match. Before they invite you officially to the group, you’re called a “prospect,” a name that gets stitched into your vest. These members run different errands that are described as “gopher work.”
28. Their Vests Are Treated As Sacred
The easiest way to recognize a Hells Angels is by their vest. Getting a vest is an important step because it marks a full-fledged member. In motorbike groups, in general, the vest is the most important item that one can own.
A vest with a famous logo and name is sacred to members. How sacred? Well, if one of the bikers gets arrested, he’ll hand his vest to a fellow member to avoid tainting it in jail. Even if they get injured and need an emergency procedure, they will do whatever possible to keep the vest in one piece.
27. They Have A Dress Code
The rules may vary, but there are some general guidelines that all members must follow. Precisely saying, there is a particular dress code that members must follow.
One member told Inside The Angels that he could only wear black jeans, shirts, and vests when he joined. You will never see them in shorts, and you will see them in different colors. The color and design codes can help distinguish which charter you belong and your level without the group.
26. There’s An Order That They Ride In
The Hells Angels biker groups can be large. They can be so big that they could take up an entire street as they ride. Did you know that there is an order that they maint while riding?
The front of the group is always reserved for the road captain and charter president. From there, the rest of the group aligns based on seniority and rank. The older members will always stay closer to the front, while newer members follow them.
25. They All Pull Over Together
If a police officer stops one member of Hells Angels, the entire group will stop. After all, they have an order to maintain. Sticking together communicates two things: it helps keep everyone in their place and shows how important the brotherhood is.
Basically, if you mess with one Hells Angel, you mess with them all. People are less likely to start a mess with a big group of people, right?
24. They Can’t Work For A Prison
Hells Angels members aren’t allowed to work for prison while they Are members. This is due to the fact that they have a rich history with law enforcement.
Plus, Hells Angels can’t work as police officers due to possible conflict of interest. Hells Angels have been known to engage in criminal activity at times. The group stands for freedom, and they love to live by their rules, so prison guards and law enforcement officers wouldn’t exactly fit in with the crowd.
23. You Can’t Share Information About Fellow Members
Trust is very important to Hells Angels culture. Therefore, they have a rigorous discretionary policy, which is another reason why Hells Angels can’t be in law enforcement.
If anyone shares any information about a fellow member, they will be automatically kicked out of the group. Their secrecy is a way of protecting their group’s regulations.
22. Once A Hells Angel, Always A Hells Angel
Once a Hells Angel, forever a Hells Angel. Once you become an official Hells Angel, there’s no backing out. Members don’t retire, and the only way for them to leave the group is to be kicked out for breaking a rule.
Your charter is your family. They spend a lot of time together, and they know each other to the bone. When one of them passes away, everyone unites to honor the memory of their fallen brother.
21. No Talking To The Media
Hells Angels like to keep things private and within the group. Therefore, there is no talking with media or any public representative unless mandatory by the law.
They are secretive because they want to protect the group as a whole and enforce the rule that members don’t talk about one another. This is also part of their security. By keeping as many things themselves as possible, they mitigate the risk of information leaking.
20. Long-Standing Association With Harley-Davidson
To be a Hells Angel, you need to have the right bike. Any bike would do. To join their circles, once they invite you, you must own a Harley Davidson.
Riding Harleys is a long Hells Angels tradition that runs along the same lines as the sacred vest. It’s valuable because its a big part of what makes them who they are.
19. They Ride Thousands Of Miles A Year Together
The Hells Angels love to communicate with other clubs and their fans via their website. This is where you can find much valuable information about their actions and even interesting facts. According to their website, the Hells Angels ride around 12,000 miles together every year.
To fit into this schedule, you need to be a true motorcycle fanatic because a bike is their top transportation mode. They are a well-connected group, but their connection is actually founded on their shared love of motorcycles.
18. Show Up To Club Events
Supporting your team is important. That’s how you build up the bond, which is why Hells Angels love having their members regularly on different events and activities.
Members who fail to show up to meetings and hangouts indicate to others that they are missing the club’s point. Moreover, those who miss events regularly are seen as disrespectful and are not likely to become full members.
17. Members Are Like Family
The Hells Angels love to bond. After spending so many hours on the road, they really connect as if they are a real family. They get to ride bikes together, and they get to do it with people who share their passion for bikes and similar lifestyles.
Their passion is much more than merely an excitement over motorcycles. Being a Hells Angels member is more about a way of life, the same values, and a belief system.
16. Don’t Join Another Biker Club
The Hells Angels members aren’t fon of sharing. So, when a new member joins, it’s expected never to join any other bike club. The Hells Angels have a deep bond that is meant to last a lifetime, and anything else would consider being disrespectful.
Members shouldn’t even consider joining another biker club, and they need to be careful about who they associate with. The website warns, “Never combine your support to Hells Angels with other clubs, street gangs, or others if you are unaware of the relationship between those others and the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club.”
15. It’s A Brotherhood, Not A Sisterhood
Hells Angels refer to itself as a brotherhood, and you will only see men with the death head symbols on their back. Women aren’t technically in the club, but they still play a significant role in it.
Many of the Hells Angels have wives and families, and they are even seen on some events together. Whoever decides to join the Hells Angels needs to be clear with his partner that being a part of this family is considerable. The partner needs to understand the commitment and be ok with this lifestyle.
14. Not Just Anyone Can Start A Charter
The Hells Angels website explains, “Motorcycle Clubs consist of people who have ridden together for years, live in the same area, are known by the community, have runs and parties, and are a brotherhood.” This means that creating a charter doesn’t happen overnight.
To establish a chapter, it takes years, if not decades. Only then would you consider morphing your group into a Hells Angels charter. This is the main reason why the website states that when you’re ready to start a charter, you won’t have to ask how.
13. You Don’t Want To Break The Rules
Following the rules is such an important part of Hells Angels culture. Breaking them puts members in a position they’ll strongly regret. The motor club is secretive and full of loyal members, and there is no telling what’s the procedure for someone who betrays the brotherhood.
Investigator Julian Sher claims that the group has burned off past members’ tattoos who broke the rules. The worst punishment is being kicked out of the club. With that, other members banish the member.
12. Don’t Question The Missing Apostrophe
Grammar lovers might notice that Hells Angels is missing an apostrophe. Since the angels belong to hell, there should be a possessive apostrophe between “Hell” and “s.”
This group is all about breaking rules that aren’t established by them, so breaking this rule seems fitting. Their website simply states, “Yes, we know there is an apostrophe missing, but it is you who miss it. We don’t.”
11. Non-Members Can Buy Merchandise To Support The Club
If you love motorcycles and love the idea of running a motorbike club, but you don’t need to be in it, you can still support Hells Angels. There are merchandise fans can buy to support the group.
This famous group has a support shop where non-members can show their appreciation for the bikers’ way of life. This is a great way to support local charters.
10. You Have To Be Clean
Hells Angels have a reputation as tough guys. With that reputation, you would think that they don’t care about what substances Hells Angels members use.
However, the group is very strict about any members using substances. Moreover, all contact or use of substances is forbidden. If you aren’t clean, they will kick you out of the club.
9. You Can’t Link To Their Website Without Permission
You may think that Hells Angels are focused only on offline presence, but that isn’t the case. It may sound surprising, but Hells Angels prefer their website to be more ‘private.’ You cannot link to the club’s website without express written consent.
Since the club is very protective of its members, this comes as no surprise. A rule written on their website reads, “You may not establish and/ or operate links to this website without the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club’s prior written consent. Such consent may be withdrawn at any time at the Hells Angels MCs own discretion.”
8. Prospects Cannot Retaliate Against Hazing
Once you officially become a prospect to join the Hells Angels, there is one rule that you must follow, and its a big one. You cannot ever retaliate against hazing.
According to the club’s bylaws, this practice is not done to belittle potential members but is instead seen as a test of their character. If you retaliate against hazing, you show that you aren’t worthy of continuing with the process.
7. Only Members Can Wear Official Merchandise
Fans and supporters can buy Hells Angels merchandise, but they aren’t allowed to wear them. Only Hells Angels are permitted to wear Hells Angels merchandise.
If you are caught wearing merchandise intended to impersonate the Hells Angels, you can expect retaliation. Also, if you are determined to support the club, do it through the proper channels.
6. Patches Are Sacred
As members grow within the club and rise through the club ranks, they are given patches. Patches are seen as sacred symbols and something to be handled with care and respect.
There are even rules when it comes to owning patches. Just like the vest, members will do everything they can do to protect their patches. In the case of an emergency, they will do all they can to save patches, even prevent doctors from cutting them.
5. Consent Is Required
They may be tough by their reputation, but specific rules shouldn’t ever be broken. Hells Angels require members to show quite a bit of respect and restraint, including their interactions with women.
Any member must get consent. Taking advantage of a person is unacceptable, and the club has a zero-tolerance policy towards this behavior. Rumor has it that you will find yourself in a world of hurt if you break this rule.
4. They Don’t Talk About Missing Members
Hells Angels are both secretive and protective of their members. Little is known, but this protection actually extends to anyone associated with the club who has gone missing.
Not only that members are not allowed to talk tot he media, but they also shouldn’t discuss other members with anyone not associated with the club. This not only protects the privacy of members, but it also protects them from law enforcement when necessary.
3. Some Charters Will Allow Non-Harleys Under One Condition
It’s well-known that members can only ride motorcycles that are Harley Davidson. However, some charters are willing to bend the rules a bit.
Still, it cannot be any motorcycle. The only brand that can be seen among Hells Angels circles is Buell Motorcycles, a originally established brand in Wisconsin in 1983.
2. The Club Always Comes First
Once you join the Hells Angels, you are considered family, which means that the club comes first. Being a member means having voting rights and being an active participant in the club.
Joining Hells Angels is a lifetime commitment, and everyone else is expected to understand what being a Hells Angels member means. Once you join this club, you won’t have time for any other club.
1. Cultural Inclusivity Is Not Widely Accepted
Hells Angels are deeply rooted in history and rules, meaning that they are more traditional than the time we live in. Now, it’s changing as well, and Hells Angels are accepting more culturally diverse members.
Interestingly, this may vary from charter to charter. Some have loosened their rules, while others have stayed rooted in the past. Each charter hets to have more