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Old 06-10-2018, 08:56 PM   #1
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Considering Cardinal Estate 3850

Good evening folks.. My wife and I are considering upgrading from our 2014 Sabre to a 2018 Cardinal Estate (3850). I been browsing this thread just looking at random issues. We looked over a Cardinal 3850 this weekend to compare quality of our Sabre (wood, cabinets, flooring, etc) to the Cardinal Estate. Lots more bells and whistles for sure. But I'm really looking to justify purchasing a coach in this price point compared to the price point of our Sabre. it seemed like ever coach we went in this weekend whether a Forest River product, Heartland, etc had something broken on it.

So for current Cardinal Estate level owners, do you feel like you got your money worth in this price point 5th wheel coach??? Any major issues???

I realize no matter what brand or model, these things take a beating towing on the crappy roads.. Small repairs I can make myself I don't fret over. But roof leaks, slide issues, etc yeah I have issue with spending $$$$ for problems. And I don't believe I should have to thousands for an extend warranty just to feel comfortable spending this price point for a 5th wheel coach.

Thanks for any input

2015 Ford F350 Super Duty DRW Crew Fx4. 6.7L stock 8 foot box, 2014 Sabre 34-REQS-6, B&W 18K Ford puck Companion Hitch
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Old 06-10-2018, 09:11 PM   #2
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The Cardinal Estate Edition is a beautiful coach. There are some very nice upgrades included in the estate such as 8k axles, MorRyde LRE 4000 suspension, 17.5Ē wheels and tires, slide out toppers, 3 ACís and many other items. If youíre ordering you can even upgrade to disc brakes. We just bought our second Cardinal and have had great luck with them and any issues were promptly handled by the Cardinal division. If youíd like to talk more, shoot me a PM. Iíve got some good background on the Cardinal brand and Iím happy to answer more questions you might have.

John Taylor
2019 Newmar Bay Star 3609
2018 Cardinal 3350RLX - sold
2013 Cardinal 3030RLS - sold
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Old 06-11-2018, 06:01 AM   #3
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Location: Michigan
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We have a 2017 3850RL, thats not labelled Estate Edition, but has all the same equipment, except the 8K axles and LRE4000 shocks. We love the trailer, and yes, if you have seen some of my posts, I've reported a few. That said, both my dealer and FR have been stepping up and have taken care of everything we've reported, some of it well beyond the warranty period. I've had the pleasure of working with one of the lead guys in the FR Warranty division, and he has been bending over backwards as well.

My personal impression is that ALL MFR's have build quality problems because they cannot keep up with demand. It's how its handled after the sale that matters to me. While price of the unit is important to me, its not the primary selling point, because I *know* I'll be a the dealer getting serviced, so the dealership I deal with is the primary selling point for me. I don't know if our next one will be a Cardinal or not. But I will tell you, that the next one will be special ordered, the order will be placed in a January/February time frame, not to be delivered until mid-April, and the PDI will last hours, and no papers will be signed until we've gone stem to stern, and all issues addressed.

Heck, I'd be willing to even pay an up-charge if someone could *guarantee* me a issue-free unit upon delivery. by issue-free I mean even cosmetic issues addressed, not just mechanical/build issues.

2017 Cardinal 3850RL Mocha Pearl full body paint
2016 F350 Lariat 4x4 FX4 SRW CC SB 6.7 Magnetic Metallic
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Old 06-14-2018, 07:51 PM   #4
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We have a 2018 3950TZ. Love it
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Old 07-26-2018, 06:56 PM   #5
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I own a 2015 Cardinal 3850RL. Worst purchase ever. Pantry door broke, large moulding above the bed, fell onto the bed, smallest bath sink EVER, can't even lean over the sink to brush your teeth, but the coup de grace was the fresh water tank falling down twice, with less that 1/3 tank of water, the second time it fell completely out onto the ground which destroyed it. The replacement tank leaked and had to be replaced. Now I don't go any where without tie-down straps, five of them, permanently strapped under the water tank.

Yeah, they fixed the problems, but had the coach each time for over three months. That's three months I was making payments, and couldn't even use the trailer.
Sgt Ed
2011 Ford F350 Lariat Crew Cab, Dually, Long Bed
2015 Cardinal 3850Rl

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Old 07-30-2018, 09:33 PM   #6
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Vicki and I just took delivery on a 2019 Cardinal Estate 3456RLES and we love it. We starting living in her on 6/26/2018. There have only been a few minor things that we have come across that need repaired. Nothing major at all and we are very pleased with the quality, the factory did a wonderful job. TV cables not labeled correctly, minor window leak, cabinet door needed adjusted, need some touch up putty/stain,one of the arms/plunger that hold up the mattress for under bed storage, awning needed adjusted and that about it. Oh a couple of minor finish issues on the exterior finish and I stress minor. So we are very pleased. The factory was fantastic to work with and our dealer I can't say enough about. There service manager Eric is second to none, he's a top notch guy that's very honest and straight forward. I know he saved us alot of money, he kept us from buying alot of unnecessary items that we surely didn't need. Our dealer is Economy RV out of Machanicsville Md. So yes we are very pleased with our Cardinal Estates. Rob was our factory rep. Good luck on your new purchase and I hope you have the same experience we have. Happy Trails to you.🥂
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Old 07-30-2018, 09:36 PM   #7
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I couldn't agree more, those are the exact reasons we bought the Cardinal Estate 3456RLES. I'm. Glad to here that others are feeling as good as we are about the Cardinal product.
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Old 08-05-2018, 09:58 AM   #8
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I guess you never looked at that sink before you bought it. The water tank was an issue because they went cheap on the bracing. I knew others that had the same problem. A door and molding falling off are an easy fix
Everything is put on with brad air guns. If that is the extent of problems that's not much.
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Old 08-05-2018, 11:53 AM   #9
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Location: Garner, NC
Posts: 417
Glad to see these remarks about the Cardinal and specifically the 3456RLES as we are looking hard at that specific model as our retirement present. We've had very good luck with FR products to date, we have a Rockwood currently and have had no issues with it what so ever. I Fixed a couple of very minor popped nails but that's it. My monitor panel got recalled by it's manufacturer, I called FR Rockwood division and they shipped they entire monitor system to my dealer instead of making me wait to have the panel reprogrammed. Dealer had it in and out in 3 days. That is the total extent of my issues with FR. I'm not new to RVs, owned many since 1975 from popup to Class A and I do 99% of all my own repair and maintenance work, only expensive warranty work goes back to the dealer. Heading to Hershey next month to crawl all over the higher end 5ivers.
44 Years RVing and no end in sight.
2018 Ram 3500 SB Limited, CC, 6.7/Aisin, 4X4, SRW. Comfort Ride Energy Absorbing Hitch.
2020 Cedar Creek Hathaway 34IK, Reese 19K Sidewinder PB.
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Old 08-05-2018, 08:21 PM   #10
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I couldn't agree more. As I stated before we have had very few problems and yes the factory has been fantastic to deal with and our dealer Economy RV out of Machanicsville, Md has really been a pleasure to work with. No excuses they just want happy long term customers. Like somebody said above it the service you get after the sale. If you look at the quality of the upper end 5th wheels there is a big difference in the quality of the end product. We are happy that we spent the extra dollars and went high end. I know after living in this unit for about 6 weeks now full time the transition from S & B to our 5 th wheel has been simple and easy. We don't miss anything about our home. This feels like home and gas from day one. I like the idea of being able to change our surroundings whenever we feel the need. Happy trails to everyone.
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Old 01-19-2019, 10:42 PM   #11
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We just got a 2018 3825 FL and we like it. No issues yet.
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Old 02-14-2019, 11:06 PM   #12
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I have a 2013 30-30. The reason the water tanks fall out is the went cheap and quit putting plywood under them. Just drop your belly and put a piece of plywood in the space . Mine came with it but in 2015 they cheaped out.

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