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Old 03-20-2013, 06:33 AM   #51
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Keep us posted. Did you contact your insurance company? That's another can of worms, potentially. I appreciate the education in this thread....on many levels.
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Old 03-20-2013, 09:52 AM   #52
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Have decided the least stressful and best way for me to repair is to have it done myself. Spoke a local trailer fabricator yesterday and will have it repaired very soon. Will let you know outcomr
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Old 03-20-2013, 09:58 AM   #53
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Originally Posted by soccerloco View Post
First thanks for all of your posts and support. Please see response from Lippert I am sure you will see some information that might surpirse you.

Mr. Gran,

After reviewing the photos and the weight information, LCI will maintain our denial of your frame issue based on the following:

1. If this was a basic design flaw in the frame, we would see multiple units with the same issue. LCI designs the frame and submits them to the OEM (Forest River in this case) with recommendations if needed for final approval.
2. Photos clearly show that the U-bolts have struck the underside of the frame which is attributed to either striking a pothole, running over an obstruction or from overloading.

3. Photos also show that supports for tanks are bowing down which implies traveling with fluid in the tanks. Since tanks are not baffled this allows for fluid to transfer freely within the tank causing undue stress to supports as well as the I-beam itself, in this case located just in front of the axle area where you are experiencing torsional cracking.

Based on the information presented, and the lack of history regarding failures of this type on the Forest River Stealth model, LCI must stand behind the denial of your claim. We have been in discussion with Forest River representative and they are in agreement with our denial. Please contact LCI should you require assistance as to the process for repairing your coach.

Regards,

Brad Smith
Lippert Components, Inc
Call Center Technical Supervisor
Customer Service Division #39
1701 Century Dr.
Goshen, IN 46528
574-537-8900 – Office
574-534-7161 - Fax
www.lci1.com/dealerhomepage

After reading this I checked my owners manual there is nothing indicating lack of bafflles in water tank and certainly no admonitions regarding towing trailer with water providing you do not exceed maximum weight. Regarding supports for water tanks today I got under the trailer and removed 4 cross members that support water tanks. I must tell you that I was taken aback by what I saw. These supports are 1 1/2 inch angle iron with 3/16 wall thickness and yes they were bowed. After removing I placed each angle on two bricks and with my body weight of 195lbs easily bent these back straight. Mind you two of these are to support 400llbs of weight and the supports span over 70 inches. More disturbing was the lack of craftmanship in their installation. Two of the supports were tipped on theri side because of the way the slotted holes were made in the support. They apparently used a cutting torch and made the holes so large that a 3/8 inch flat washer passed through the cut hole and allowed the support to move about. I can't imagine that these suppports would hold anything more than the empty tanks yet the Forest River makes no mention of not hauling water if you do not exceed maximum weight. So we have lippert saying there are no baffles in the tank and traveling with water would contribute to a torsional issue. Wow. I can't tell what poor workmanship I witnessed under this trailer. Now regarding the dimpling I have never been off road, never overloaded, never hit a pot hole but have traveled the highways of the Western States mainly California. The tires on my rig wear evenly, all of the shakles and supension components are all perfectly well and my towing rig has had no issues at all with alignment, tire wear or anything other issues regarding pot holes.

I now believe that they rely on the fact that most people do not use their trailers much and they engineer them to that level cheesey. I must interate to all of you out their check your frames, check the corss members holding your water tanks and you will see what I am talking about. I have yet to respond to Lippert and Forest River but I feel compelled to respond first to all of you that have been so interesed.
I will be replacing the cross memeber and met with a trailer fabricatior today. He has shown me how all of the cross members of the frame are above the center line of the I beam and there is nothing on the bottom half to help the forces of torsion when you turn. In indicated that he has seen many trailer especially the newer lighter versions that suffer from symtoms torsion from turning and that's what he attributes my problems to.Will let you all know how the repairs go and I must say I feel better that I have a real expert working on my problems. I can't imagine letting these people touch what they have already screwed up.. Again thanks to all

[*] 2013
Cannot see the photos now, does the dent, purportedly caused by the u-bolt, in fact line up with the u-bolt? Is there evidence, damage, mushrooming, bending, on the u-bolt? What is the clearance between u-bolt and dent? Is there a design flaw in the alignment or clearance? Ask to see the design drawings of your frame. Are the stamped by a structural engineer?

Personally, you have to think how is this going to play in court? If you have six kids and three large dogs it won't look good on the overloading issue. If it is you and DW and two cats, diff story... You have any photos of your setup, maybe showing that you don't travel with everything but the kitchen sink?
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Old 03-20-2013, 10:18 AM   #54
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soccerloco, I think you have chosen the least stressful direction.
Forget Lippert, as they obviously have no intention of standing behind their product.
As for the poor construction of the water tank supports, welcome to the world of cheap RVs. That is why we never travel with any amount of water in any of the tanks.
But you mentioned that the frame cross-members do not extend to the bottom of the I-beams? What kind of two-bit engineer designed that? I have never heard of such a thing, as anyone with half a brain would realise the potential for issues. Lippert really is a joke.
I am sure that once a real trailer shop has worked on it, your camper will be good o go!
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Old 03-20-2013, 11:49 AM   #55
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to answer the dog and kid issue. My wife and I are 64 years old . My kids are grown in their 40's and don't live at home. I have one dog a border colley and she weighs 40lbs. Yeah RV's are built cheaply but the lack of quality is amazing. My trailer fabricator said by adding to cross members near the bottom of the ibeam web will stabilize the torsion. He also mentioned that everything else underneath looks fine. I will be changing the water tank supports and replacing with larger wall thickness angle. I don't travel with much water but the 3/16 wall thickness angle is totally ridiculous. One of the nice things of RVing is when you travel you don't have to use public restrooms. So typically we travel with 40 to 50 gallon of water for that convenience. As I mentioned in Forest River's operations manual there is nothing that says you can't haul water as long as you don't exceed max weight. I love the lippert response that indicates the exact opposite what bozos. In the future when I buy a new unit my research will be much different checking potetnial units online. One thing for sure it will not be a Forest River product or Lippert Frame!!! I will try and post pictures again
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Old 03-20-2013, 11:53 AM   #56
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hopefully this works
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Old 03-20-2013, 11:56 AM   #57
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water tank supports bowed
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Old 03-20-2013, 12:26 PM   #58
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Touche'....you worked it out. I just e-mailed a manufacturer to find out what kind of frames they use. It's a smaller company and I was impressed with the upgrades that come standard. I wondered if they are using Lippert frames.
I will always be on the lookout.
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Old 03-20-2013, 01:07 PM   #59
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Hooray you made my day...For armed is for warned. I just emailed responsed to Lippert and Forest River. I waited for several days because I was so upset. I will let you know what lame excuses they come up with this time. Remember your Forest River manual is wrong according to lippert you cannot haul any water in your RV because the tanks are not baffled and if you do it creates torsional stress on your frame. FR manual says you can if you do not exceed max weight........
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Old 03-20-2013, 01:20 PM   #60
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soccerloco View Post
Have decided the least stressful and best way for me to repair is to have it done myself. Spoke a local trailer fabricator yesterday and will have it repaired very soon. Will let you know outcomr
Get it fixed right and send them the bill. I've heard the lippert field repair guy does some sloppy work if they did fix it...
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