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Old 04-15-2016, 05:26 PM   #1
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Freedom Express Poor Workmanship

We just picked up our new 2016 Freedom Express 257BHS not too long ago and although it seems nice, upon digging deeper into our unit, we found signs of poor workmanship.

How much longer would it take to properly drill a hole through wood and not punch through the back of it so it fractures like in these pictures of the boards under the cushions for the dinette set? I can only imagine other holes that are hidden that are this way that I haven't discovered yet.
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Old 04-17-2016, 06:32 AM   #2
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What exactly is this picture of?

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Old 04-17-2016, 06:32 AM   #3
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Nvr mind lol...I read it again

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Old 04-17-2016, 10:32 AM   #4
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Nvr mind lol...I read it again

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I can understand the mentality that "who cares if the customer can't see it", but my finger can sure feel the splinters as I put it through the hole to try to use it...
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Old 04-17-2016, 02:35 PM   #5
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looks like they used a hole saw as they should, but pushed it instead of allowing it to cut through at the end. 1/4" needs care
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Old 04-17-2016, 07:16 PM   #6
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looks like they used a hole saw as they should, but pushed it instead of allowing it to cut through at the end. 1/4" needs care
Luckily it's an easy enough fix. Push the plastic circle out, trim the edges of the splinters, then put some wood glue down and press it back in place.
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Old 04-18-2016, 09:33 AM   #7
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Mine were exactly the same. They are forcing the bit through the wood, and it's probably drilled hundreds of holes and is probably dull at this point too. It's all because they are being rushed down the line, which is unfortunate.

Be prepared to find other things like this too. Trim that doesn't line up right, gaps in woodwork, scratches, lazy wiring like my coax that was just thrown into the rear compartment and not stapled... It goes on.

It's not specifically a Coachmen, Forest River, or any other brand issue - it's across the industry. I think it should be better, but it's unlikely to happen, so I just chalk it up to little projects to keep me busy. This weekend, I installed my Progressive Industries EMS, and while I was in the back compartment under the bunks, I cleaned up the remnants of wire, and stapled the coax to the bed supports so it didn't tangle with the outside shower or other items. I've also filled in missed nail holes, touched up scratches in the woodwork, etc.
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Old 04-18-2016, 10:00 AM   #8
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Mine were exactly the same. They are forcing the bit through the wood, and it's probably drilled hundreds of holes and is probably dull at this point too. It's all because they are being rushed down the line, which is unfortunate.

Be prepared to find other things like this too. Trim that doesn't line up right, gaps in woodwork, scratches, lazy wiring like my coax that was just thrown into the rear compartment and not stapled... It goes on.

It's not specifically a Coachmen, Forest River, or any other brand issue - it's across the industry. I think it should be better, but it's unlikely to happen, so I just chalk it up to little projects to keep me busy. This weekend, I installed my Progressive Industries EMS, and while I was in the back compartment under the bunks, I cleaned up the remnants of wire, and stapled the coax to the bed supports so it didn't tangle with the outside shower or other items. I've also filled in missed nail holes, touched up scratches in the woodwork, etc.
Thanks for the tips. I'll have to check out everything that's hidden that I can access. I still haven't dewinterized my unit yet, as it was still getting below 32F at night here in NY the last couple of days. I think I will want to keep a close eye on my plumbing as I begin to pressurize it for the first time. I'm hoping the poor cosmetic workmanship in hidden areas doesn't apply to plumbing, as I'd hate to have a leak!
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Old 04-18-2016, 10:34 AM   #9
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Thanks for the tips. I'll have to check out everything that's hidden that I can access. I still haven't dewinterized my unit yet, as it was still getting below 32F at night here in NY the last couple of days. I think I will want to keep a close eye on my plumbing as I begin to pressurize it for the first time. I'm hoping the poor cosmetic workmanship in hidden areas doesn't apply to plumbing, as I'd hate to have a leak!
We live in California and have purchased all our rigs here or in Nevada. I've never winterized an RV before, so I am asking in ignorance: How can you buy a rig and say "a close eye on my plumbing as I begin to pressurize it for the first time."? Does that mean the dealer never ran any of the plumbing? Do you all buy frozen rigs off a lot and wait until Spring so see if they work correctly????

To paraphrase Woody Allen..."Maybe being able to turn right on a red light isn't the only cultural advantage to living in California..."

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Old 04-18-2016, 10:36 AM   #10
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Thanks for the tips. I'll have to check out everything that's hidden that I can access. I still haven't dewinterized my unit yet, as it was still getting below 32F at night here in NY the last couple of days. I think I will want to keep a close eye on my plumbing as I begin to pressurize it for the first time. I'm hoping the poor cosmetic workmanship in hidden areas doesn't apply to plumbing, as I'd hate to have a leak!
I haven't dewinterized my new unit for the first time either, but my friend warned me to check all connections before pressurizing the water. The hidden connections should be fine, as they are all crimp PEX connectors, but definitely check the screw on connectors at the sinks, toilet, etc. I'm not familiar with your particular unit, but on mine (282BHDS), the water heater is accessible by removing the mattress and boards on the lower bunk. That's where my power and cable TV enter as well.
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Old 04-18-2016, 10:39 AM   #11
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We live in California and have purchased all our rigs here or in Nevada. I've never winterized an RV before, so I am asking in ignorance: How can you buy a rig and say "a close eye on my plumbing as I begin to pressurize it for the first time."? Does that mean the dealer never ran any of the plumbing? Do you all buy frozen rigs off a lot and wait until Spring so see if they work correctly????

To paraphrase Woody Allen..."Maybe being able to turn right on a red light isn't the only cultural advantage to living in California..."

Cheers
Partially correct - the units came from the factory to the dealer winterized - as in antifreeze is in the lines and they are not pressurized. They can't really test them without dewinterizing the unit, and in my area, it's just getting to the point at which we can do that, so they couldn't test them. They aren't really "frozen", they just don't have water in them and the dealer never really tested them. I plan on doing mine in a couple of weeks before I take it out for the first time.
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Old 04-18-2016, 10:42 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by ChateauV10 View Post
We live in California and have purchased all our rigs here or in Nevada. I've never winterized an RV before, so I am asking in ignorance: How can you buy a rig and say "a close eye on my plumbing as I begin to pressurize it for the first time."? Does that mean the dealer never ran any of the plumbing? Do you all buy frozen rigs off a lot and wait until Spring so see if they work correctly????

To paraphrase Woody Allen..."Maybe being able to turn right on a red light isn't the only cultural advantage to living in California..."

Cheers
I believe it came winterized straight from Coachmen, but it could be possible that the dealer may have winterized it as well. We didn't test the plumbing in the PDI, but we tested everything else. I wanted to keep the antifreeze in the system anyway until it warmed up. I tried to schedule the PDI when it was warm enough, but apparently I got it wrong and it snowed a couple inches that day. If I find a leak or if there is one, I can bring it back for warranty work.
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Old 04-18-2016, 10:43 AM   #13
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We had an issue with the skylight over the shower/tub in our Freedom Express 261BH. Plexiglass popped off the plastic well/housing. Took it down was surprised at what they used for adhesive. It was practically nothing. Doomed to fail. Had to re-stick it with something better but while the well housing was out we smeared a thin layer of caulk on the exposed wood framing and stuffed a little bit of insulation in the cavities up there. Then screwed the window well back into place. In our home, we did the same thing (20+ years ago) with caulk in the cut out of our laminate countertop so if water got under the sink edge, it did not mess up the "wood" under the kitchen counter. Also could not understand why they used regular bulbs (which get SOOO hot) instead of LED's. Now, all the main areas are warm white LED now and the storage areas are white white LED's. Haven't done the outside lights yet.
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Old 04-18-2016, 10:45 AM   #14
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Partially correct - the units came from the factory to the dealer winterized - as in antifreeze is in the lines and they are not pressurized. They can't really test them without dewinterizing the unit, and in my area, it's just getting to the point at which we can do that, so they couldn't test them. They aren't really "frozen", they just don't have water in them and the dealer never really tested them. I plan on doing mine in a couple of weeks before I take it out for the first time.
Yes, my water heater is also below my bottom bunk in the very rear of my 257BHS. We took the mattress off during my PDI and they explained to me how the bypass valves worked. So I will check that area when I first pressurize, also the area under the kitchen sink near where the water pump is I believe, and maybe under the bathroom tub and bathroom sink?
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Old 04-18-2016, 10:50 AM   #15
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Also could not understand why they used regular bulbs (which get SOOO hot) instead of LED's. Now, all the main areas are warm white LED now and the storage areas are white white LED's. Haven't done the outside lights yet.
I think they had recently switched to all LED's in the latest Freedom Express models? I believe the only one that isn't is the light for the hood vent over the stove? Up until a couple years ago, LED's were still pretty expensive but I think the price has dropped enough where they can put them everywhere now.
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Old 04-18-2016, 12:31 PM   #16
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I think they had recently switched to all LED's in the latest Freedom Express models? I believe the only one that isn't is the light for the hood vent over the stove? Up until a couple years ago, LED's were still pretty expensive but I think the price has dropped enough where they can put them everywhere now.
Nope. Ours is a 2014. Bought new and were the regular filament bulbs. It wasn't that hard to change out. The covers were the hardest to get off and put back on. The bulbs only work when plugged in correctly so if it didn't work the first time, flip 'em over. Since we have 2 different colors, we can have brighter ones in the storage areas and the warmer in the living areas.
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