The Motorcycle Bikers Dictionary – P

Parallel Twin - Inline 2 cylinder engine
Parallel Twin – Inline 2 cylinder engine




P-Pad – Pillion Pad – The passenger seat

Paddock – Area where maintenance on race entered motorcycles takes place, which also includes support vehicles and transport.

Paddock stand – A detachable stand used to raise either the front or rear wheel off the ground.


Pads – Tires

Pancake Engine – Horizontally opposed engine. (i.e.. BMW Boxer or Honda Goldwing engine)

Pan Panhead – 1. Slang for the Harley-Davidson engine produced between 1948 and 1965. Named after the valve covers that look like small turkey roasting pans. 2. The Panhead Engine (V-Twin, produced from 1948 – 1965). 3. Harley-Davidson’s second generation overhead valve Big Twin.

Pannier – One of a pair of saddlebags, packs or baskets hung over the rear wheel of a motorcycle

Parallel Twin – 1. An inline 2 cylinder engine. 2. A two cylinder engine with its cylinders placed side by side in an upright position.

Parked It – Going slower in a race than conditions allow.

Participate – To aid a member in a fight by ganging up on the opponent.

Parts per million (ppm) – A measure of concentration usually indicating the number of volume parts of a substance per 106 parts of air.

Passenger Backrest – Sissy Bar

Passenger Pad – Pillion Pad

Pasta Rocket – any Italian Sportbike (Ducati, Aprilia, MV Agusta, Benelli)

Patch holder – a club biker

Patches – Patches are sewed onto a jacket or shirt to signify a club, brand or something of note.

Pavement Surfing (PS) – Being thrown from your bike and skidding along the highway.

PCV – Positive Crank Ventilation. Vents crankcase vapors into the intake manifold to control pollution.

Ped boi – (British term) A chav on 2-wheels/a hoodie riding a moped. Typically with a noisy spannie and using the pillion pegs instead of the footboard, ped bois are often to be found in packs in McDonalds carparks.

Pegging or To Peg Someone – This is when one rider pushes a disabled M/C and rider with their M/C using their leg with their foot on the disabled M/C’s rear foot peg or axle – hence the term Pegging or to Peg Someone.

Personal electric vehicle (PEV) – PEVs are fully electric vehicles – usually a motorcycle or scooter – designed to transport a single passenger over short distances. They offer several potential benefits, including lower transportation and fuel costs and reduced environmental impact. The eTV fleet includes several PEVs: the Vectrix electric motorcycle, the Segway i2 and the Zero S electric motorcycle.

Petcock – Fuel Valve. Petcock’s can have multiple fuel options such as: OFF, ON, RESERVE and PRIME.

PhD – A self-paced learning system designed by Harley-Davidson to keep professional dealership technicians current.

Pillion (or ballast). 1. Motorcycle passenger (on the back seat). 2. chiefly British : a motorcycle or bicycle saddle for a passenger.

Pillion Pad– A small seat attached to the rear fender of a motorcycle to provide seating for a passenger.

Pinched – Picked up by the police

Pin It – To open the throttle wide open.

Pipes – Exhaust System.

Pisspot – An old-fashioned open faced helmet usually favoured by owners of vintage British motorbikes.

Piston Caliper (single/double/four/six) – For disk brakes, the caliper holds the abrasive brake pads so that they are on either side of the brake disc. The number o fhydraulic pistons in the caliper that squeeze the pads against the disc causing braking of the disc’s rotation.

Pistons – The slugs moving up and down within the engine cylinders.

Pit – A designated area where makeshift garages are set up to perform maintenance on race-entered motorcycles takes place. Where the racing teams park their trucks and set up makeshift garages to work on the bikes and house the riders.

Pit Crew – Mechanics and or assistants.

Pit Board– A large sign a mechanic writes on and shows to his rider as he goes past. Pit board signs can be used to show a rider’s position, how far he’s ahead or behind, to encourage him or even to remind him to breathe.

Pit Lane – A lane adjacent to the track used to enter and exit the race track circuit and where maintenance takes place prior to and during practice sessions and the race event.

Planetary gear – A gear driven by a central sun gear or crownwheel.

Plastic Bikers (similar to R.U.B.’s) – Refers to new riders who have gone to their local motorcycle shop, pulled out their plastic credit cards and bought everything brand new – a mega bike and all the gear.

Plastic Fantastic – Sports bike, ’cause they are plastic and the riders think they are fantastic.

Plastic Maggot – (1) Honda CX500 (Great Britain) (2) Honda PC800 (North America) .

Play the Clutch – Use of partially engaged clutch.

PLP – Acronym – Parking Lot Practice

Plugs – Spark Plugs

Plugs too cold – A plug that doesn’t have a hot enough spark to burn off carbon deposits and will foul.

Plugs too hot – A hot plug produces a spark so hot that it will fire the air/fuel mixture before the valves are shut and the piston is in the proper position for the down stroke. The result is pre-detonation or pinging which can hole the piston.

PMS – Parked Motorcycle Syndrome. A condition suffered by both male or female riders when they can not ride their motorcycle due to bad weather, repairs, or other reasons.

P.O. – Acronym for Previous Owner.

P.O.B.O.B. – Pissed Off Bastards of Bloomington – the original gang that later developed into the Hell’s Angels.

Poker Run – A poker run is, for the most part, like any old motorcycle run. Instead of just riding from Point A to Point B, however, there are also several stops in between (usually 5 total). At these stops you go in to the checkpoint and draw a playing card from a deck of cards. Depending on the rules, you either keep the card or the person at the checkpoint will mark down what card you drew. You do this at each checkpoint, and by the end of the run you will have 5 cards … this makes up your poker hand. At the last stop you turn in your poker hand, and whoever has the best hand wins.

Popping the clutch – Letting the clutch out quickly to achieve a fast start.

Port – Opening into a cylinder.

Ports – intake & exhaust valve openings

Poser – A wannabe Biker (i.e. Shiny new leather). A pretend biker.

Positive Camber Turn – Turn that is banked such that the outside of the turn is higher than the inside of the turn. Properly banked speedways and freeways have positive camber turns.

Postie bike – Asingle cylinder 90cc or 110cc step through Honda as used by the Aussie and Kiwi postal service.

Pot – A single Carburetor. (So 4 pots would be a 4 barrel carburetor)

Pots – Pistons found in a brake calliper which push the brake pads against the disk. Many different variations: single pot, 2-pot, 4-pot, 6-pot etc. Generally, the greater the number of pistons, the greater the stopping force.

Pour on the coals – To accelerate hard.

Power – A measurement of how much work the engine can do over a given period. So while the engine generates a certain torque, power is a measure of how frequently that torque can be generated. Measured as a unit of speed combined with a unit of force and typically expressed in units of hp, bhp, PS or kW.

Power RPM – The number of revolutions per minute at which the maximum power occurs.

Powerband – The RPM range of an engine where the most power is produced.

Power Plant – The motorcycle engine.

Power Ranger – A derogatory term typically applied to owners of sportsbikes who have 1-piece leathers colour-matched to their bikes.

Power Shower – Riding in the rain with anything other then a full face helmet. Also riding in the rain without rain gear.

Power Train – 1. Components that deliver rotary motion from the engine to the drive wheels (transmission, clutch, primary and secondary drives.). 2. Refers to all of the components that generate power and deliver it to the wheels, including the engine, transmission, drive shaft and drive wheel.

Power-weight ratio – The power generated by the engine divided by the weight of the engine. For example, a turbocharged V-8 with an engine power of 190 kW (250 hp) and a weight of 450 kg (1,000 lb) would have a power-weight ratio of 0,56 kW/kg (0.25 hp/lb).

Power wheelie – Using the engine’s power to bring up the front wheel into a wheelie during acceleration.

Precious metals – A general term for gold, silver or any minerals of the platinum group.

Pre-Ignition – Pre-ignition is when the intake charge is ignited too early. The combustion pressure exerts large forces on the upward traveling piston and can destroy the engine. On the other hand, detonation can occur at any point during the combustion process. It is basically a violent and uncontrolled explosion in the combustion chamber. Although folks commonly refer to combustion as an “explosion” it is actually more appropriately termed a “controlled burn”. Explosions in the combustion chamber are undesirable, and the violent release of energy can also destroy an engine. Pre-ignition can sometimes lead to detonation because the premature burn is simultaneously compressed. Pre-ignition and detonation are both bad news. Detonation is usually caused by a *lean* A/F mix. (Vacuum leaks) or improper jetting. Also by low octane fuel,over advanced timing, lugging of engine, and of course excessive carbon in the combustion chamber. A rich mixture can lead to detonation due to excessive carbon buildup in the combustion chamber decreasing its volume and raising the compression excessively.

Primary Drive – The drive method of connecting the engines crankshaft to its transmission.

Pivateers – Racers who do not have the backing of a manufacturer.

Probate – Club membership hopefuls, who ride with the gang during their probationary period. After this time a unanimous vote must be cast by the membership for acceptance, initiation, and awarding of colors.

Production Motorcycles – The bikes manufacturers produce to sell to the general public, rather than bikes built specifically for racers.

Prospect – A prospective member.

Protein Facial – What you get on the highway without a windshield

PSI – Pounds per Square Inch. An example would be used in tire/tyre inflation.

PUB – Poor Urban Biker. Generally used as a comeback by Bikers who are accused of being RUB’s.

Pucker factor – Refers to a very close call. “I had a pucker factor of 10 around that corner.”

Pucks – Part of the required safety garment. Pucks or knee pucks are part of the body armour worn by the rider that attaches to the side of the knee and is used while cornering.

Pull – Ability to accelerate.

Puppies – Female Breasts.

Purple hooters – Topless female rider in cold weather.

Purring – Referring to a smooth running engine.

Pushrod (Pushrode System) – 1. In overhead valve engines, rods from the camshaft to the rockers, activating the valves. 2. In a pushrod system, the cams are located below the cylinder heads and push on the rockers arms by moving long rods, called the Pushrods.




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