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John Maxwell knows just about everything a Harley-Davidson enthusiast needs to know.
Curious about what kind of gear you should take with you before you head out on your Harley? No problem. What about the essential equipment for your toolbox? Yeah, he knows what you need. Or how about the right sunglasses for your next ride? Come on, that one’s easy!
In fact, Maxwell has a YouTube channel to answer all of those questions and lots more.
The Harley Tech is a YouTuber, Motorcycle Mechanics Institute (MMI) graduate, and certified technician who works at Chattahoochee Harley-Davidson in Columbus, Georgia.
Maxwell draws viewers with his laid back sense of humor, relatable demeanor and authentic appreciation for everything he talks about.
He loves interacting with people, but he wanted more reach than his shop could offer. So he decided to start a YouTube channel where he could connect with other motorcycle enthusiasts.
Maxwell filmed his first YouTube video in August 2017, where he showcased 2018 Harley model releases.
“The first video was me having fun and goofing off more than anything else,” says the 33-year-old. “It got a stupid number of views, considering I'd never uploaded anything before, so I brought the camera back a couple days later and set it up and started working.”
Now more than 65 videos later, John has a fervent following of viewers who ask him questions about everything from manual labor to recommended gear. He even has fans who visit him at the shop. Some even bring gifts.
Maxwell had an unusual path to becoming a Harley-Davidson fan. He had a little experience riding dirt bikes with this stepdad where he grew up in Georgia, but his interest in motorcycles started to become a passion during a trip to Europe when he was 13. He wanted something to read that would keep his interest during the long flight, and that’s when he saw a thick magazine that was celebrating the 95th anniversary of Harley-Davidson.
He went on to write an eighth-grade research paper about Harley-Davidson, and then he saved up and bought his first Harley-Davidson Sportster when he was 23. It was a model that was inspired by the magazine he bought back when was 13. And he still has it today.
Maxwell worked nights at bars and restaurants, but he spent his days riding. That first year he put nearly 10,000 miles on his bike. He loved the open road so much that he’d go 200 miles just to grab lunch.
When Maxwell found out that his first child was on the way, he decided it was time for a career change so he was no longer working nights. But he didn’t want to give up his Harley-Davidson.
“If you're going to have a job and have kids, you don't get to ride your motorcycle as much, that's the rule,” John says. “A lot of people would trade their motorcycles in and give up their bikes, but that's not the life I wanted.”
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