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Old 12-12-2013, 12:22 PM   #1
Junior Member
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 8
Good service

Excuse me if my english is not too good. Here is my story. Last summer, I found out that I had a problem of frame flexing on my Sanibel 3500 2012 that was still under warranty. If you look under FWguy, you will find the whole story. I called Roger Stickel at Prime Time and he told me that he was sorry to hear about that and offer his help. He told me that my frame flexing was a rare thing on the Sanibel. He also told me that there was nothing to worry about since I was getting ready to leave for my vacations. Since I always wanted to see what it looks like in Elkhart and that I was just retired, I decided to take the Sanibel to the Prime Time factory after my vacations. We agree on the date.

During my vacations, I had a problem with a low bridge that my Garmin DEZL did not see and me neither. A/C was tore down, a few roof rafters were broken, ceiling in the bedroom was all cracked up or bent out of shape and cabinets were broken. I called my insurance and they said I was covered. So I tought why not have Prime Time do the whole job (roof and frame flexing) since I was going there anyway. Insurance agreed.

After explaining my accident to Roger Stickel, he was very supportive and told me that he had experienced the same problem once. we agreed on a date I would bring my Sanibel to the factory. When you put so much money in a FW you want to make sure that it is in good hands when it is time to have it repair and I felt at the moment it was the case.

For me, driving to Elkhart is a 16 hours drive. I knew, I could not stay in Elkhart for the whole time. It was a 3-4 weeks job. I was going to bring the Sanibel to Prime Time and take a few days to visit other factory. When I arrived that night after a full day of driving, I took a motel and parked my FW close to my room. I left the motel next morning on my way to Prime Time. First impression of the place: very good. I met Roger in the main office. We talked about my travel while we were going to take a look at the dammage on the FW. He was kind of surprise that I did not hit the front cap and told me that this would be a fairly easy job.

When I asked him where do I park the FW, that is when came in the first bad news. "We don't do the repair here, this is just the factory. We have an external contractor who does warranty repair." I don't know if he saw it in my eyes at the moment but I tought "what the ....". I could get my fifth wheel repair at home but I wanted to make sure that it was the people who build the Sanibel that would repair it.

Second bad news. The repair facility is a few miles from the factory. I had 2 choices. Leave the trailer here or take it myself to the other facility. I opted for the second option. On my way to the other place, I said to my girl friend that I should have asked more questions before driving 16 hours. Here we are at REC-SPEC (recreational speciality). A warehouse with a huge door. Went inside and asked for Ronald (Roger told me his name). "Not here, but will be back in a few minutes. He went to the paint shop facility. It is just a few minutes walk from here."

Got outside and look at my girl friend that is waiting for me. She could see on my face that I was almost ready to leave the place and go back home. That is when I hear a voice saying "Hi, you must Bob." There was a man walking toward us with a big smile. He presented himself. Ronald Green. I'm the owner. I was waiting for you. Come in.

He showed us around the repair facility. You could easely see that he knew a lot of thing about repair and also about all the RV industry. We talked for about an hour. He explained to me every step they had to do to restore my baby. First, remove the front cap. Second: Lippert is going to send a team to repair the frame flexing problem. Third: repair the roof, A/C, ceiling of bedroom. He said that when the job will be finish, you won't be able to tell anything had happened to the Sanibel except if you go take a look at the roof. New EPDM roof. I was re-assured.

4 weeks later after a call from Ronald, we are on our way to Elkhart from Montreal, Canada. When we arrived at REC-SPEC, my baby was outside. Let's see that. Nothing apparent from the outside. Climb the ladder to the roof. WOW. New shiny roof. New A/C. New vent cover. Take a look at the caulking job. Perfect. Nice job. He had also taken care of a scratch that I had made on the driver side lower panel near the wheel. Now for the bedroom. Hard to believe. It really was like new. Like the first time I visited that FW at the dealer. Very impressed. Hitched the FW and no more frame flexing. Theses guys are magicians. They do all kinds of customs modifications in that facility.

I'm not paid by Prime Time to tell my story. I was just a sad owner when I saw that frame flexing last summer and a veryyyyy sad owner when the accident happen. It can be hard today to get a good service from a dealer but I have to give Cudos to Roger Stickel at Prime Time and Ronald Green at REC-SPEC for restoring my baby.

Nice holidays to all of you
Robert Levasseur

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Old 12-12-2013, 01:00 PM   #2
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Southwest Michigan
Posts: 527
Love that story, Robert, and can understand why you wanted to share it. We can all understand the fear and anxiety which the situations you describe would create for an RV owner. In addressing those issues, I would have been extremely apprehensive at every turn, just like you. However, all's well that ends well. Good for you and thank goodness the factory put you in the right hands to get things done right! Bravo!

2013 Windjammer 3008W
2006 Chevy Silverado 2500HD 6.0L w/Equalizer 4
Nights camped: 2012 (29); 2013 (26); 2014 (40); 2015 (43); 2016 (35)
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Old 12-12-2013, 01:42 PM   #3
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Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: HuntsVegas, AL
Posts: 5,504

Great story and great service - thanks for sharing.

Sad sad thing about the low bridge - I think this is a fear all of us 5er drivers have! ( this sucker gonna fit?! )

Wanted to share a app for my iPad (I think it works on iphone too and maybe andriod) It is ALLSTAYS Camp & RV. It is a $9.99 App that has a low bridge database (and routing around steep inclines as well). This is in addition to the excellent campground info, Wal-mart/Sams club overnight locations, flying J/Good Sam discounts.

You mentioned your Garmin had a low bridge DB? (I did not know that!) but perhaps this can be a $10 (US) addition to your route planning!

Oh..and Bonnes vacances à vous et votre petite amie!

(Et pardonnez mon français, je l'ai étudié il ya plusieurs années à l'université!)
Bob & Anne-Marie [BamaBob & 6 Actual]
| 2017 Berkshire XLT 43A with Ultrasteer Tag | Blue Ox Avail + KarGard II |
| SMI AF-1 Air Brake | 2016 Jeep Cherokee Overland TOAD | Pedego Bikes |
Nights Camped: 2013 - 242014 - 422015 - 56Jul 2016 - Fulltime
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Old 12-12-2013, 02:54 PM   #4
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Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: VA
Posts: 291
I started it when I was driving my old Monaco, and keeping that tradition, I printed a labled based on my own height measurements of what clearances I was comfortable passing under. I will say the sanibel is a heck of a tall trailer.
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Old 12-12-2013, 10:29 PM   #5
Junior Member
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 8

thank you all for theses nice words. I had a label on my dash with the actual height of my fifth wheel but the scenery was so nice that I forgot about the bridge. Since then I bought a database for my Garmin DEZL GPS and it is way more complete than the OEM one.
Low Clearance GPS Data
it is cheap and now I have way more low clearance warning.
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