Tim Edmondson, co-founder and lead designer of American IronHorse Motorcycle Company, resigned from the company Feb. 24 to produce custom, one-of-a-kind motorcycles, Powersports Business has learned.
Edmondson, who formerly served as company president, will continue as an AIH director and will serve as a consultant to the company. He’s the single largest shareholder in AIH.
“What I do is create,” Edmondson told Powersports Business, “and as we’ve gotten to be a larger manufacturer we’re more regulated by the government. My passion for one-of-a-kind motorcycles has taken a back position.
“My main focus,” he continued “is to make IronHorse be the best that it can be, but also to develop my Signature line of motorcycles.” AIH dropped the Signature line in December. “But since that time, 27 people have called and want me to build a real radical, one-of-a-kind of bike, and I had to say, ‘No.’ That weighed heavily on my decision,” he said.
Edmondson said he’ll work as needed at IronHorse, although details of the consulting arrangement have not been completed. “If they need me every day for three months, I’ll be there,” he said.
Edmondson said that liability concerns limited creative options available to a manufacturer and restricted his creativity. Special edition bikes don’t have to meet the same Department of Transportation regulations, for example, that bikes produced by a manufacturing company have to meet. Items such as turn signals, engine size and rake angles are highly regulated for manufacturers but not for custom builders, he pointed out.
He’s been considering a move for several years, Edmondson said, and he decided to make the move now because the company has a strong management team in place and has design resources on staff to continue.
Edmondson said he plans to create a small design shop in the Fort Worth, Texas, area and produce only about 10 bikes a year.
The move, says Edmondson, “allows a creative guy like me to continue to be creative. It reminds me of the early days of IronHorse; it was an exciting time, and I hope I’ll be able to recreate that excitement for myself.”
Edmondson said he wouldn’t be working with Bill Rucker, his partner in founding IronHorse, who resigned last year and is preparing to launch his own bike company. “Bill would be a competitor; that would be working against my own company. The last thing I would want to do is hurt IronHorse; I’m still there,” he said.
Copyright 2004 Powersports Business