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Old 08-01-2011, 03:51 PM   #1
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2011 ridgeview

after 3 weeks of ownership I can say QC is dead at forest river. The following issues are now being addressed by Dealer
1. A/C not connected in bathroom
2. black tank flush allows no water into tank
3. slides rub roof
4. kitchen drain not connected to main drain, all water drained into RV
5. hot/ cold water lines reversed
6. awning switch wired in reverse.
7. bathroom sink chipped
8. refrig. dented and does not work at all
the list is longer but I think you can see where this is going.
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Old 08-01-2011, 04:38 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by bob34787 View Post
after 3 weeks of ownership I can say QC is dead at forest river. The following issues are now being addressed by Dealer
1. A/C not connected in bathroom
2. black tank flush allows no water into tank
3. slides rub roof
4. kitchen drain not connected to main drain, all water drained into RV
5. hot/ cold water lines reversed
6. awning switch wired in reverse.
7. bathroom sink chipped
8. refrig. dented and does not work at all
the list is longer but I think you can see where this is going.

I would think someone at the factory would be doing a quality control check of these units before they are sent off to the dealers. To me it's a dollars and cents/sense issue. Surely, by this point in their business, FR has done the math on return repairs vs. cost of quality control. Could it be that hiring, paying and keeping good, conscientious workers has become so difficult that quality control is NOT cost effective? I know the owners at Forrest River must cringe when they hear of problems such as you’ve had. Letting a product “out the door” with the lack of workmanship you experienced is not good for the company name.

Maybe someone from FR that is looking in can explain how these units make it to the street without being checked out.

By the way, in all fairness, this plight of quality control is not exclusive to Forrest River. I've seen and heard of customer dissatisfaction across the entire RV industry.
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Old 08-01-2011, 05:30 PM   #3
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There is a saying that has been going around for years, it is: The buyers are the QC inspectors and the dealers are the QC repair department.
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Old 08-01-2011, 06:47 PM   #4
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why wasn't some of these things found during your PDI, like the dented fridge and the chipped sink and some of the other things?
and why didn't the dealer find these things BEFORE the PDI?

i'm not saying that the factory doesn't bear a lot of blame, but that's why the dealer is supposed to go through upon delivery from the factory.

a sales rep for the Ridgeview posts here often. i'll try to find his posts so you can shoot him a message.
i had asked him if FR was going to expand the Ridgeview floorplans from only one.
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Old 08-01-2011, 07:24 PM   #5
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got an email from Nancy Nigh before telling me someone would contact me shortly, that was 9 hours ago. I agree with the PDI being rather lack luster but still the manufacturer still should provide a quality product if you are going to ask 160,000 for a C. I just hope I don't find more things next week while we are on vacation. As far as the rest of the industry goes, our friend just bought a new 43' DRV Elite Suite that has almost 50,000 in water damage after just 1 month of use.
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Old 08-03-2011, 10:32 AM   #6
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QC is certainly not dead at Forest River. I can't speak for all of our divisions, but I walk many of the units coming down the Class C line. This unit is an anomaly for our division.

I am unfairly harsh on our production crew, because like everyone here I expect us to catch every obvious mistake. I have many dealers that have switched manufacturers and for the most part, they say our units come in show room ready. We are certainly not perfect, though.

I find it humorous when people cite "cost savings" as a reason for our "obvious" neglect of QC. It costs us twice as much to fix something in the field than it does here at the plant. We know that, which is why we have a 20,000 sq ft PDI facility that takes a sample from each division, every day, to monitor and improve each divisions quality control process.

In the end, these are still houses built on wheels. When I built my current house (and it was more than the $160k for a C), they gave me a 1 month, 6 month and 1 year inspection sheet. I was to write down those things that were damaged or failed to operate properly. I filled those out, and those items were taken care of. I was happy with the whole process even though there were things like a chipped tub, a bad drywall seam, an improperly crimped coax cable, a bad outlet and oddly enough, a dented fridge. How did those items ever get missed?

In my (10) years at Forest River, I have seen a unit sneak through the cracks due to a rushed delivery. In an effort to meet a timeline, it did not get its proper attention.

Another issue I have seen is parts shortages. Unit goes through the line, missing a countertop. It goes outside. The countertop comes in and the countertop installer goes outside to install it. While he's out there his screw gun hits the sink, chips it. He either doesn't notice it or doesn't say anything. Everything else worked, counter in, ship it.

I have also "personally" walked and tested a unit only to find something fail (that I know worked) after a 2000 mile shake down delivery.

Please don't take these as excuses, I'm simply trying to explain some of the issues that arise. It seems you may have had an unfair number of items and I hope that the dealer and our warranty dept take care of them in a timely manner. In the meantime I have forwarded your issues to our production manager, General Manager and Quality Control Department (yes, they do exist).
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Old 08-03-2011, 12:36 PM   #7
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Someone *is* listening.

B. Clemens,

Thank you for taking the time to give us a quality control 101 class. Without doubt, your working hours must be filled with complaints and very few compliments. I/we here at the FR Forum compliment your dedication to making a good product better and more reliable.

A personal question, if I may. I've tried to get an answer to this quandary for two years, from the factory to the dealer, and everyone has said the same, "There is no fix." I think/hope I/we've finally met the man in the RV industry that stands behind the shibboleth, "The buck stops here."

As you know, the Class C Freelander Dreamer and Sunseeker, (possibly others as well) are fitted with the Above Floor Slideout System. The slide itself works fine but the bottom seal (above and below the slide's rails/tracks) when the slide is out, is woefully inefficient. Not only do the rubber flaps allow cold air and dust to blow inside, bees, hornets, and mosquitoes have a way of sniffing-out a meal within.

Surely Forrest River has realized this engineering error and has had a retrofit designed and available.

Again, to the man on the line, thank you for giving us some understanding of how the QC pieces fit and comfort in knowing someone "out there" is listening.
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Old 08-03-2011, 01:40 PM   #8
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I have received a call today from Mike Burns at Forest river and many things were explained to me about my unit, 1st the drain not being connected was addressed by the dealer in March prior to me taking delivery and appears to not have been corrected properly , some issues he agreed slipped thru the cracks, but will be addressed. This is my 2nd forest river product in 2 years, my 1st was my 36 RE and we really had good luck with it after its initial shake down fixes. I know the company stands behind the product and all will be well in the end, it was just rather frustrating to have all the problems show up on our 1st trip. Losing all your food due to a bad refrig. is just not a good thing to happen at Disney with no tow vehicle available to run for resupply.
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Old 08-03-2011, 05:05 PM   #9
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Thanks, bclemens.
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Old 08-09-2011, 09:45 AM   #10
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B. Clemens,

As you know, the Class C Freelander Dreamer and Sunseeker, (possibly others as well) are fitted with the Above Floor Slideout System. The slide itself works fine but the bottom seal (above and below the slide's rails/tracks) when the slide is out, is woefully inefficient. Not only do the rubber flaps allow cold air and dust to blow inside, bees, hornets, and mosquitoes have a way of sniffing-out a meal within.
More and more of the below floor slides are shifting to the Schwintec "in-wall" slide. That slide type fits a little more snugly than the floor slides. The in-wall however is still a pretty new slide mechanism and we'd like to see a few more years of field service before we transition some of the bigger slides.

As for the floor slide, the only thing you can really do is go with a taller rubber seal on the bottom (cut out for rams, etc.) or put a similar continuous rubber seal on the face of the slide floor inside the coach. It may not be the most aesthetically pleasing fix though.
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