Hassled by the police?

I was pulled over the other day, and thought the officer was going to sweat me about my Yosh pipe, but much to my surprise he was more interested about my license plate. I have the KTM rear fender extention, and the plate is wide enough that it sticks out on each side of the fender. To keep from getting cut I bent the corners of the plate behind the fender extention. The numbers are still visible, but he said I was ruining state property and had to straighten it. I told him to write me a ticket then, and show me where in the vehicle code that it said that it was illegal. He did niether, and told me to just straighten it. I straightened it and asked him in my best sarcastic voice if he was happy now. When I got home I removed the plate, and mounted it sideways. Dont know if this is legal or not, Anyone out there that might know?

I've seen them mounted that way in Bay Area. Don't know if legal.

Can't answer to the legality question. But you're not alone. Last night I cut 3/4" off each side of my plate so it wouldn't hook brush and branches and get torn off. The numbers are all there, but I definitely defaced state property. I used an aluminum backing plate to stiffen up. If I would have been patient I could have made it look almost factory. But I did a rush job and the edges are a little rough. Still better than sticking out and maybe I won't get caught?

Seems like mounting it sideways is asking for trouble though.

If it's state property than why did I have to pay for it???

If I pay for it it's mine :) As long as it's readable what's the issue?

Sounds like he just needed something to give you crap about. He was probably hoping to bust you on some unknown/other issue.

You didn't pay for the piece of metal .. You are paying for the privlage to drive on the roads maintained by the state.

I thought about doing this myself.

I seen a couple of KTM with them mounted side ways.

They said they have never been hastled and one was a bone stock exc 200 with a street plate.

I think it depends on the state/country issuing the license plate. Here in NH we are not required to turn in our old motorcycle plates - they are ours to keep.

I mounted mine sideways as you suggest and it fits very well. Better than cutting your leg up on it. I haven't been hassled over it in Colorado, they are just amazed to even see it when I get stopped!

The guy must have been really bored to mess with ya about that man. In my Harley and Triumph chopper days they were all mounted sideways on one side or the other of the frame. I started to say swingarm but they were in rigid frames so that wouldn't have been right. Hopefully something more important than hassling a dirt rider will come his way, then he won't have time to hassle you. George :D:)

NH - the "Live Free or Die" state :D .....for now :):D

this just goes to show how little police do during the day, maybe we have to many cops?........hmmmmmmmmmm..................

Just a guess, your loud pipe got the Officers attention, and not having a DB meter focused his attention on your license plate. Our state code forbids the mutilation of a license plate of any kind. Mounting it sideways, popularized by custom Harleys, is not specifically illegal but is written as a legibility (or lack there of) issue. Take my advice and try to make your bike as outwardly legal as possible unless you like dealing with the cops. Remember, Traffic Cops have nothing better to do than look for the odd-ball car or bike. That is our job!

I can understand using something for PC purposes, but the guy is obviously petty if he is going to waste paper by writing up someone for a bent license plate. Especially if all numbers and tags are visible. I could understand if the guy was trying to hide a part of the plate number. This is obviously a case of the cop that would ticket his own mother.

I was browsing the California Vehicle Code and I couldn't find anything that said the plate had to be mounted a certain way. It basically said that the plate has to be visible/readable from a distance of 50 feet, and properly lit at night. Assuming your local law enforcement officials can read sideways, you should be okay mounting the plate vertically. :) Every street-licensed KTM dirt bike that leaves my friends' shop, has the plate mounted vertically.

I'm guessing your cop friend wouldn't have liked my setup........but geez, the WR's don't have licence brackets, and the rear fenders are quite skinny.........you do what you have to do, right?


Never mind the rear tire, 26 miles on a flat doesn't do a tire good........


Dodger :D:)

:mad:Oooooooo... That Bastard!!!! Gosh I'd just love to meet some guy like that when he's off-duty at a bar being rowdy. "I was afraid for my life!" :D would be my catch phrase, if you know what I mean. :D

The guy wanted to fuq with you... once he found there was nothing really he could fuq with you about... he obviously tried to invent some BS story about state property. I salute :) you for sarcastically checking this little beyotch right there on the spot! (DAMN that had to feel good!) If you were a smart-ass with him... and he didn't give you a ticket... you know he couldn't. C'Mon.. by that time he would have been fuming under his collar, chomping-at-the-bit to cite you for something, anything... that is... if he could. Oh man... your story felt soo good to read.

There's a friend of the family whose girlfriends somehow always tend to go out with these bungholes. There is almost ALWAYS some kind of deeper psychological problem/wound that they makeup for... and make themselves feel better by.. by trying to impose their will/authority/opinions upon others.

You get a Golf-Clap my good man!

YOu should have said, "since it is State property and you are a State employee, feel free to straighten it."


"The tag is a safety hazard with the exposed edges. Which would you rather me do, be responsible and not possibly hurt someone or my self or leave these sharp edges exposed and cause the State a law suit for:

1) not making a tag that fits a motorcycle

2) Making a hazardous product that is dangerous to the occupant of this vehicle and anyone that passes to oclose to it....let alone the occasional endo......."

I'm not trying to "call out" any cops or Law Enforcement officials nor am I trying to piss anyone off by writing this - but I read in the local paper a study that was being done showed that some 70% +/- police officers were abused as children in some form, fashion or another. This alledged abuse, be it repressed or acknowledged, resulted in the individuals desire to be in a career, family or situation whereby they could be a controlling factor in a given situation, again, be it career, family or otherwise.

NOW, before you guys that are cops fly off the handle and tell me that it is irresponsible to repeat and/or write such B.S., which I think it is, I simply found the correlation's that were being drawn very interesting.

Something to think about anyway.


Maybe some people are posting some suggestions that might not be very constructive to our sport. Police have a job to do and its there job to stop and inspect people who might have some questionable equipment. It’s there job to keep the roads safe for you and me and everyone else. Copping an attitude with a law enforcement officer is a nice way to piss him off and even though you might get away with it the next time he is out and about it might be your buddy who gets stopped and gets a ticket. I understand that there are always going to be cops who are non-forgiving and will throw the book at you but I would dare to say that on average cops are pretty lenient. If they enforced every rule there was on the books life would be allot different, as we know it. So give them a break and be kind (even if they aren't being kind to you) because when you are in the spotlight of the police you are not an individual but in there eyes you are everyone who owns or rides a bike on the street, road, trail or anyplace else.

This is just my opinion and how I deal with this type of situation. I guess with age and maturity you start to think about the BIG picture more than you think about yourself.

Also on a side note. I don't consider myself to be Mr. All Law Abiding Citizen. I do my share of speeding, and rolling stops and other minor stuff. But I also know that if I get pulled over for it then I have to pay the price. I try to do my best to keep in line and not put any flags up to single myself out.

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