New Numberplate

Hi, Must just say a big thanks to the guys and girls at
for the help and advise regards my new plate. Ordered on Monday evening, chatted through Tuesday and the plate arrived today exactly as I wanted. Top job, cheers.

Nice one Kwaked now get it stuck on!

crack open the champagne

Got that size on my bikes for last four odd yeas never been tugged

6.5 x 7.5 can take standard size letters and numbers so that is the smallest that is considered legal. Really wanted something smaller…but didn’t want to get pulled and fined.

Hi Guys

I hope you don’t mind me replying to your posts, but I wanted to answer your question and I had to register to do so! I work at Craigsplates (hence my username lol!) and can give you the info you need about your plate sizes.

DVLA do not quote the size of plate you must have but how high the fonts should be, the minimum margins, minimum spacing between lines AND how your registration must be laid out. If you have a 7 character registration you’re stuck with the massive 9" x 7" plate but if you have only 5 or 6 characters you can have a smaller plate either the 7.5" x 6.5" or 6.5" x 6.5". BUT a 6 character reg cannot display a badge on the 6.5" x 6.5" plate, because there just isn’t enough room to put it anywhere. Sorry guys but one-liners are big no nos!! (Just to confuse you a bit more - if you have a 7 character reg with two 1’s in it, you can have the smaller plate size as 1’s need less width than all the other characters).

The vintage biker (pre-1973 models) bikes not riders can display the modern yellow reflective plates, but they can also have the metal black and silver vintage plates which have slightly different dimensions due to complying to a different BS. A 7 character reg must have a 9" x 6" plate but the 5-6 character regs can have 6.5" x 6.5" - all digits must be 2.5". Sadly Lambretta owners with 7 character regs are stumped because (I believe) you have to have a 6.5" x 6.5" plate regardless so it will fit. You would have to order a showplate for off road use only with 1.75" digits (or buy a new reg that only has 6 characters lol!). There is one more road legal plate for 5-6 character regs and that’s the shaped rear plate (curves at the sides) it’s dimensions are 7.5" x 5.75".

Another type of road legal plate is the bendy plate, solid enough to fit to your bike in the normal way, but ‘gives’ if scraped along the ground. We do stock these in 9" x 7" but I have to admit the most popular size for these ones is 7" x 5" (showplate)

I would say our most popular off road bike size plates are the 8" x 6" and 7" x 5" because they keep the same ratio as the 9" x 7" so your reg still looks ‘normal’ just a little smaller, but all in proportion. The 6" x 4" plate that used to be very popular, seems to be dying out a little now, maybe you’re getting tugged a lot more??

I think most Traffic police are either mad about cars or mad about bikes, so they tend to use their common sense. We sell quite a few showplates to them (but don’t tell anyone!!)

I hope this helps!!
All the very best

Thanks Karen much appreciated your advise the other day. See you followed the link I sent over. Welcome to LB by the way.

Thank you - I was in two minds whether to reply as I didn’t want people to think I was trying to advertise and get more business!! We do genuinely like to help where we can and advice costs nothing!! My Dad’s crazy about vintage bikes: Nortons, Triumphs, Velocettes (apologies for spelling) and is trying to restore several he found dumped!! I’m not brave enough to ride a bike but watch you all whizz by me green with envy!!
Keep safe!

I’ve been told by the cops I know not to have it on one line. While the writing on my plate is small I have it on two lines and after getting pulled a number of times they have never said a word about the plate. Most of the time they are talking about the speed and looking at the cans

Hi Drei,

The plate size you’ve chosen will be a showplate because you have a 7 character reg and your own slogan at the bottom. If you had a 1 in your top line, it could’ve been done as road legal (minus your slogan). It’s a nice size plate though and a badge with a border always finishes the plate nicely. Badges on plates without the border seem to float in ‘mid-air’ and look a bit unfinished.

OK so who can tell me what all the biker codes that you put on the bottom of your plates mean? I know DILLIGAF (for those that don’t it means…Does It Look Like I Give A F***!). C’mon please tell!!

Some popular slogans are:
“catch me if you can”
“dip me in chocolate and feed me to the lesbians”
“if you can read this YOU’RE TOO DAMN CLOSE”
“my other toy has t*ts”
“I wish my wife was as dirty as this”


Well what can I say? I sat down to read my emails over my first steaming cup of black coffee, only to find they were all from you guys asking for a discount on plates. Please please stop emailing me, I promise I will look after you and yes I know you are the best Bikers in the country (or offering to take me out - you know who you are!!) Here is the code:


Enter that in the discount code box (online orders only) and you will receive a 10% discount on your plate (doesn’t include fixings or postage).

I don’t know if this is visible enough to be seen by everyone?? Do pass it on to the organisers of your forum if this has to go in a special place!!

Very best wishes

Hi Drei

Sorry I didn’t mean to confuse you. The current BS states what size letters must be, how far apart they should be, the space between rows and how much space must be left as a margin all around the plate. Generally, if someone has 7 characters in their registration without any number 1’s or letter I’s (eg A234 XYZ) they must have a 9" x 7" size plate to be road legal and have the BS mark in the corner etc. If their reg is A123 XYZ, i.e. it has a 1 in it, then they could have a 7.5" x 6.5" plate road legally. If their reg is A112 XYZ or only 5-6 characters, i.e. A23 XYZ, then they could have a 6.5" x 6.5" plate (but no badge possible). All this is for compliance with BSAU145d to be road legal.

If someone has a full 7 character registration and they cannot fit a 9" x 7" there is nothing legally they can do. They cannot have a smaller plate as the letters will not fit with all the correct spacings and margins therefore they will have to buy a showplate. A showplate is a plate made from the same material as a road legal plate but does NOT conform to the current BS. As it does not conform it is not legal and therefore, cannot be used on the UK road and they can be stopped, can fail their MOT etc.

From what I have heard, talking to customers, it is not slightly smaller than the legal size plate that the boys in blue often pick you up on, but one line plates, ridiculously small plates or plates with offensive slogans on the bottom (such as “here piggy piggy”). I cannot in anyway tell you it is OK to buy a non-legal plate - sorry!! But something like a 7.5" x 6.5" or 8" x 6" isn’t being too cheeky, especially if you have a functional reason for having a smaller plate, which you might be able to argue about at the roadside if you are stopped. Traffic cops, do have common sense, they aren’t just out to get you, but I guess it does depend on what you are doing and where at the time you are seen!!!

Now talking specifically about your plate Drei, your registration is X917 YMK, you can legally have a 7.5" x 6.5" as you have a number 1 in your top line. 1’s do not take up as much width as any other character, this reduces the space required to fit your 4 character top line in, so you are lucky. I hope all this makes sense, it’s very hard to explain something I take for granted having made thousands of plates both show and legal!!

Very best wishes