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Old 09-04-2019, 09:43 AM   #1
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Hi all, just bought a new Forest River NOBO 19.1 Toy Hauler

Hi everyone, new here, we were previous Casita trailer owners and we moved on up to a larger trailer that can haul the motorcycle.

I wanted a trailer that would be mostly composite and salt water and rot resistant, and I cannot afford Airstream or other custom all aluminum trailers. I love this trailer and the layout, and I really have high hopes for this trailer, except things were done so poorly by the factory that I am now worried overall.

I am questioning everything now about this trailer as stuff was literally falling apart on the drive home from the dealer, so I am not going to take it back to the dealer for these repairs because I don't think they will do as good of a job as I will, at least on all these small items. Also when I read about all this online, there are tons of complaints about poor workmanship everywhere on the Internet, so I don't think I got a lemon, its just the Forest River way of putting things together.

So on the 3 hrs drive home from the dealer, the cabinet/ cubby next to the door was falling off the wall. The main RV door kept flying open on the road, thank God its not a suicide door. The vanity at the top of each window that covers the mini blinds, one of those just popped off and lay on the floor of the trailer. We saw a big bend in the thin plywood that covers the outside of the refrigerator and it turns out, that much of this is being caused by too small of staples or the staples weren't driven in all the way.

So first, I immediately drove to Home Depot in Shreveport 10 miles from the dealer to get what was necessary to fix everything.

The cabinet, the staples were coming out all over, and it appears they are too short, which makes me think all the cabinets are using too short of staples. The staples only have about 1/4 in sticking into the next panel, and that needs to be about 1/2 in. So I wood glued everything on the cabinets and clamped all of them together and put in stainless corner brackets and screws and went on my merry way like that home so the clamps would take the bouncing until the glue sets. That turned out to be the right choice. The cabinets are very solid now so far.

About half the screws I am finding for the blinds covers were stripped. I changed those out with oversized stainless screws, and I can tell you right now, the interior of the Azdel side walls, the vinyl covered walls, they are paper thin and screws easily strip, so my advice is coat the screws with epoxy and install oversize stainless ones and so far that seems to have worked well.


Don't peel the stickers on the inside of the trailer off the walls right away! Use a hair dryer. They will pull the vinyl off the walls and cause bubbles. I was able to press the bubbles down and that appears to have holded so far. My feeling is the panels are so new the glue has not cured on the sidewalls.


The door was flying open because someone didn't actually put any holes in the frame for the latch and the deadbolt. They simply screwed the striker plate to the inside of the door frame right onto the frame with no holes. I used a dremel and a diamond burr and was able to route out perfectly sized holes into the aluminum frame and Azdel fiberglass and then paint it black. The door latch and deadbolt works well now.

The small staples used to hold paneling onto the side of the fridge, most of those have pulled out and once again, are not long enough. I haven't tackled that yet because its more cosmetic and thats going to be last on the list.

Anyhow, I do want to like this trailer allot but I am concerned that if they overlooked so much common sense things and didn't even bother to check their work. Am I going to have these problems with the actual frame and walls of the trailer? I mean am I going to go down the road and the entire Azdel side of the trailer starts to peel off?

I would be interesting in hearing any stories about other people with NOBOs. Like I was saying ,its all just little jobs so far, glueing, stapling, re-inforcing cabinets, nothing major, and its made easy by everything being new and clean so glue sticks well and problems are obvious.

Look forward to seeing yall on the road. Our first big trip will be the Lone Star Motorcycle Rally on Galveston Island Texas.

Sincerely,

Steve
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Old 09-04-2019, 09:53 AM   #2
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If you have benches that have storage underneath or can be converted to a bed, open them up and check all the supports. The dinette on our 2018 Cherokee fell apart the first time one adult slept on it. Nothing was right and I rebuilt the frame of the benches and supports for the table to lay on for making it a bed and now 3 adult's can stand on it and it won't give.
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Old 09-04-2019, 10:15 AM   #3
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Thanks. I didn't think about that, but the front bed is a queen and is built using light weight pine and 1/4 plywood, but I will go ahead and run a bead of glue underneath all of it and install extra screws and maybe some more stainless brackets. Under the bed is a pass through storage from one side of the trailer to the other with outside hatches. It needs an inside hatch and doesn't have one. I was going to install one.

I can say this. TightBond III exterior wood glue is really good. It drys a clearish light brown color so it matches the wood and the cabinets well and you don't see it. I have been running beads of it inside the cabinets and squeezing it down into the joints and it cleans up with water if any drips out and runs.

Thanks for the reply.
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Old 09-04-2019, 10:43 AM   #4
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Welcome to the forum. As you found out new tt can be a bit of a sore spot for being perfect. I see where you are handling it quite well. Being handy helps. Enjoy and Later RJD
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Old 09-04-2019, 11:12 AM   #5
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Welcome from SoCal! Sorry about your troubles - but you seem to have the repairs well in hand.
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Old 09-04-2019, 11:29 AM   #6
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Sorry to hear about your problems. It's sad that we accept such inferior quality from the US RV mfg's. Look at the Austrailian and European RV's and there is a world of difference. Higher price..yes but I'd be willing to pay more for some quality workmanship.
The US RV community needs to stop buying these inferior products for 6 months and see if anything changes. I would love to have a new RV but I'm not willing to go thru the repair process of their poor workmanship.
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Old 09-04-2019, 12:03 PM   #7
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I live to be handy, I think RVing is about improvising

So wife was just throwing fits the whole way home as all these problems happen right off the lot. She was saying things like "if I paid $25k for a car, I expect it to be perfect".

Also she was wanting the dealer to fix it all, but honestly in these rural RV dealers, who always have the best prices, they also have the least amount of talent. When "Bubba" looked at the cabinet which was already starting to show signs of failure at the RV lot, they said they would have to keep it another week and then we would have to drive back and pick it up. As far as I was concerned "Bubba" would probably have just glued it like I did, and thats about it. Not any further re-enforcement with stainless hardware, and stainless screws, so I am looking to upgrade what Forest River does factory, not just patch it. I want it to never come apart again. RVs shake and rattle far too much on the road for anything to just be stapled together like that.

I explained to her that an RV is really partially a vehicle but partially a house, and in my opinion it being built like a house with wood and separate modular components like AC, Water Heater, fridge and so forth is actually a must for RV's because all RV shops will have those components anywhere you are at.

Can you imagine if an RV was built like a car. Only a certain water heater or ac unit with a specific shape from that manufacturer would work, and if the part isn't available, just like the auto parts store you would have to order it.

Anyhow, lots of good glue and stainless hardware is a friend of the RVer, and zip ties. I live to go through the entire RV and check every fitting, joint, leaks , waterproofing, whatever.

Even our previous Casita which is built like a tank. I spent $100 on 3M Undercoat and first thing I did when we brought it home was spend all day undercoating it, and 14 years later, not one lick of rust anywhere.

Thats been a very good trailer but they don't make any bigger than 17ft and no toy haulers.

Anyhow, looking forward to many years with the NOBO. I just hope the trailer frame and walls live up to what they advertise as being well built and solid weather resistance.

P.S. I am not knocking the name "Bubba" if thats your name.
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Old 09-06-2019, 04:55 PM   #8
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Thanks for posting. This is the camper I want to get into, and your post kinda scares me.

I like the idea of being able to put multiple kayaks on top, and then having the toy hauler space for a variety of uses. We don't actually plan to haul toys, but rather gear and such. To me the garage seemed like the perfect convertible space that could be used for a variety of things, especially when you add the back porch. I also figured you could throw an air bed down in the floor for added sleeping space.

Thanks for the update and keep us posted on your adventures!
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