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 > Any warnings on brands to beware of?

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SidecarFlip

SE Michigan

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Posted: 07/12/18 07:59pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

mobilefleet wrote:

I've rehabbed and flipped over 200 trailers. From my experience the top 2 would be winnie and keystone. Don't even look at forest river. This is my opinion


You said a mouthfull there. If it's FR, it's basically slapped together. Expect issues down the road.

Not all bad but most.


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Last Train

Texas

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Posted: 07/12/18 09:08pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Another positive vote here for the Coachmen Freedom Express 192RBS. As far as a couple's camper goes, this rig has worked very well for us and was delivered new to us in August of 2015 in virtually perfect condition (it's a 2016 model).

I do carefully watch and maintain the roof, seams and seals, and we have never had any water intrusion. Otherwise I'm proactive in regular inspections and maintenance and cleaning. All systems have worked as designed and advertised from day one. The only major component I've replaced was the factory supplied Chinese made tires after 12,000 miles (internal belts were failing showing accelerated and uneven wear). I replaced them with a new set of Goodyear Endurance, and they've been great so far.

We've only clocked just over 15,000 miles towing this unit, but it has always tracked stable and true behind our truck and is a delight to tow. I can sympathize with those who have experienced QC problems, but that has not been our experience. When we've arrived at our destination we've not had to worry (so far!) if something would or would not function correctly.

We recently returned from a ~3000 mile/3 week round trip to the Midwest (eastern Ohio) and back to Houston. On the way back we looped up to Middlebury, IN for a tour of the Coachmen plant. I went into this with a jaundiced, skeptical eye but actually came away fairly impressed. Our appointment was for mid-afternoon after the work day had finished and all workers had departed, so it was just my wife and I (and our dog which they welcomed) led by a Coachmen representative, so I had the opportunity to ask lots of questions. Basically I came away with a better understanding of the materials making up our unit and the process to put them all together.

With all that said other posters in this thread have offered wise counsel to very carefully inspect your prospective rig - no matter the brand or model. Any of them are subject to imperfections and/or malfunctions.

* This post was edited 07/13/18 11:37am by Last Train *

WNYBob

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Posted: 07/12/18 09:23pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have a Cruiser RV Shadow Cruiser which is one step below the FunFinder. By below I mean in the way it is appointed, with suspension and hitch upgrades as examples, not in the way it is built.

Poor workmanship and piece-work is the major issue. Workers being pushed to get pieces out an not trained to do the job properly. All mfg are prone to this. Here is what I found on my camper!

In the spring after I bought my camper I noticed that there was water being held under the camper (the cover fabric covering the insulation held the water in). So I looked for a way the water was getting in there. I noticed the angle trim was not a feared to the side, so I removed it. It was being held in place by a few screws driven up through the bottom of the angle. What amazed me was there was a bead of caulk in the inside corner of the angle, still round! The caulk did not touch anything! I replaced caulk with butyl tape o. The camper sealing the corner, and then mounted th angle trim. To finish I added a bead of caulk betw8the siding an the angle. Guess what... no more water.

End of rant!

rbpru

North Central Indiana

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Posted: 07/12/18 09:38pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

From what I have learned those TTs that are a cut above average, such as Lance, Nash, the Arctic series and of course Airstream; have a price to match.

Even these models have their detractors.

Do not confuse design trade-offs with shoddy construction. My 2010 TT has design issues that make me shake my head. They were not built wrong, there were built as designed. There is an annoying amount of "fix it" projects, still, it does not leak.

Good luck


Twenty six foot 2010 Dutchmen Lite pulled with a 2011 EcoBoost F-150 4x4.

Just right for Grandpa, Grandma and the dog.


old guy

Oregon (pronounced Or e gun)

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Posted: 07/13/18 02:28am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

mobilefleet wrote:

I've rehabbed and flipped over 200 trailers. From my experience the top 2 would be winnie and keystone. Don't even look at forest river. This is my opinion
that is my opinion also when it comes to forest river. we were working on a brand new forest river at the lot and the service tech put his hand on the wall and it broke into pieces and we had a heck of a time replacing that wall. all TT manufactures have entry level TT's. but in saying that Rv building is not rocket science so do a very intense inspection before you buy. I for one would not buy an entry level TT. if it were up to me I would buy one with a metal frame as opposed to wood

BurbMan

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Posted: 07/13/18 07:06am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Information gets outdated very quickly as the industry changes....Forest River was complete junk in the early 2000's when Sunnybrook was considered the quality standard....then they started making junk, went out of biz, then FR quality started improving. Fleetwood was good for many years, went to junk, made a brief comeback and then folded their towable division.

As rvparkowner noted, pay attention to components....stay away from cable-driven slides, undersized axles and without self-adjusting brakes, etc. If you want to see how a TT is made, look in the dead spaces behind cabinets where pipes and wires are run to see if holes were cut or just made with a hammer, see how many screws are driven straight vs on an angle, etc.


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SoundGuy

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Posted: 07/13/18 07:42am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

BurbMan wrote:

Information gets outdated very quickly as the industry changes....Forest River was complete junk in the early 2000's when Sunnybrook was considered the quality standard....then they started making junk, went out of biz, then FR quality started improving. Fleetwood was good for many years, went to junk, made a brief comeback and then folded their towable division.


A gross oversimplification that may read well here on the forums but is about as far from the truth as any statement could be. In reality corporate Fleetwood simply decided to get out of the towable trailers market for a variety of reasons, including Fleetwood Folding Trailers which they had owned & operated since 1988. Travel trailer / 5th wheel manufacturing facilities were sold off while the folding trailer facility in Somerset, PA was sold to Blackstreet Capital Management, an equity holding company with a history of eventually closing down companies. Their new acquisition continued to manufacture folding trailers in Somerset just as it always had, operating under the name FCTA, but anyone with any knowledge of the industry knew it was only a matter of time before the doors would close, which indeed did happen in Jan 2011. This decision had nothing to do with so-called "quality issues" but was strictly a matter of a dollars & cents. The market had changed, there wasn't the demand for folding trailers approaching anywhere near the level there had been in previous decades, and labour costs had driven the selling price of these units to the point where few would buy them. In the meantime more and more manufacturers began to offer smaller, lower priced, single axle hybrids and travel trailers that were priced not much more than a Fleetwood folding trailer. The die was cast and Blackstreet decided the time had come to close down - a business decision, nothing else - just as it was corporate Fleetwood's decision to get entirely out of the towable market.

* This post was edited 07/13/18 07:55am by SoundGuy *

Gdub2

TN

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Posted: 07/13/18 10:27am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Went online and found hundreds of complaints
about keystone rvs about the crappy workmanship
on their rvs.worked in the construction field
for 20years just because you say you can build
a house doesn't mean you can.

JIMNLIN

Oklahoma

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Posted: 07/13/18 11:59am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

This thread reminds of the our local tv channel new girl reporter. She did a survey around town of auto repair shops on which car had the most customer complaints...the Ford Taurus had the most complaints by 20 percent.
Old reporter on another tv station made another survey about which car had the most sales in the same city....the Ford Taurus had the most sales by the same 20 percent margin.


"good judgment comes from experience, and a lot of that comes from bad judgment" ............ Will Rogers

'03 2500 QC Dodge/Cummins HO 3.73 6 speed manual Jacobs Westach
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Gdetrailer

PA

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Posted: 07/13/18 08:27pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

JIMNLIN wrote:

This thread reminds of the our local tv channel new girl reporter. She did a survey around town of auto repair shops on which car had the most customer complaints...the Ford Taurus had the most complaints by 20 percent.
Old reporter on another tv station made another survey about which car had the most sales in the same city....the Ford Taurus had the most sales by the same 20 percent margin.


[image]

Finally, someone posts the true reality of how folks opinions can bend the truth.

Honestly, OP if you are still with us, FORM YOUR OWN "OPINION".

ALL RVs are built the same way with the same materials and construction, employing manufacturing methods going back to Henry Ford with an assembly line. RV manufacturers pump out thousands of units per yr using teams of workers who do small parts of the assembly. Not one person works from start to finish on all units, each team builds a part, that part gets integrated into the assembly and it is moved to the next station where the next part is installed.

Once all assembled, it may or may not be fully "inspected", depends on the plants QA policy.

What I am getting at is that there will be good units and there will be a few bad units.

There tends to be MORE good than bad for any manufacturer.

The bad ones do eventually get fixed under warranty.

If buying used, pretty good chance that the previous owner shook out most if not all the issues and now you are left with a unit that if the previous owner took care of it will be fine. If the previous owner ignored the routine maintenance and water damage has happened then you may have a problem to deal with.

Best bet is to find a RV that MEETS YOUR NEEDS whether it is a specific layout design, color, decor and size.

Once you find what you like, then make a deal and go camping..

No need for all the fence sitting and drama of peoples opinions of what they consider quality or best..

You can read opinions until you are dead and never get the chance to go camp if you let others decide for you..

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