ROADRAT started back in 1967 as a joke. I would ride this 1950 Panhead everywhere. Dirt roads didn't bother me at all. I loved the adventure of out of the way places, still do I guess. Seemed like every time I'd see one of my pardners the bike would be caked with mud. They'd usually say "Wash that rat" and of course I'd retort with " Hey, I'm on the road, not just polishin' it" The two got melted together somehow and the handle ROADRAT was born. I really hated it at first. I'd pull up to the crowd and a chorus of "LOOK! it's the ROADRAT!" would ring in my ears. It was quite the joke and seemed to go on forever. Several versions of the cartoon were drawn. This moved to the T shirt, I couldn't believe it, give me a break, people! This was making me crazy, I'm surprised they didn't make ROADRAT the movie, I was thinking that would be next! Everybody was havin' such a great time with this. So much, so, it stuck. It finally dawned on me, that my friends must really like me, to go to all this trouble. Then it was OK and I must admit I've grown really fond of it over the last three decades.



I did my first patch at the age of 17. That was back in 1967....... To this day I have no idea why? Over the years I've done almost 600 different designs. Sold a lot of patches to a lot of bikers, never big time. I must admit that most of that time I had to have a real job. But hey, I had fun and met some really cool people. I gave it up in 1991 after a lot of miles and a lot of biker events. Patches fell out of fashion, everybody was wearing pins and riding motorcycles that looked like Darth Vader's helmet?????? So, I gave up, for awhile, anyway. Then along came the internet, I know, I was a little slow.... Has to do with old dog, new tricks thing. This new media is so exciting, and it's global. There's even a few people in Europe and Asia with my stuff, cool huh? Times change, that's for sure, and looks like patches and choppers are coming back into favor, never left for some of us. The bike rags are featuring choppers again, so we'll see.....

 



LEFT: the original 1968 art work..... CENTER: 1968 first production run patch..... RIGHT: 2002 re-issue patch....
From the pictures above you can see I try to match thread color and the basic feel of the patch. Actually, with today's computer technology these re-issues are closer to the original art work than the original patches. The main difference between my original 60's and 70's patches and the re-issue patches of 2002 is the material used in the construction. Back then I always used wool felt. Today the cost of wool has skyrocketed to the point that it would triple the cost of the patch, if I could find a source for it. I now use the highest grade polyester replica felt. Not as good as real wool, but the moths won't eat it.... The polyester should hold up for at least ten years or so, under hard use. If your a vampire, your patch will last a little longer, sunlight breaks down polyester, so wear only at night.............. just kidding.......