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Old 11-12-2010, 11:11 PM   #1
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Unhappy Cracks in 5th wheel pin box to frame

I have a 2007 Forest River Wildcat model 28RKBS 5th wheel trailer. This trailer has had nothing but problems since the day that I bought it. The latest problem is cracks in the 5th wheel hitch pin box where it attaches to the frame of the trailer. The crack is bad enough that there is about .5 inches seperation between the bottom of the pin box and the frame. The front of the 5th wheel settled about 4 or 5 inches where the underside of the 5th wheel was almost touching the bed rails on my truck. I was lucky that I noticed the problem before the hitch broke away from the trailer. That could have been a huge problem for me or someone driving behind me if the 5th wheel trailer had broken away fow the tow vehicle.

Other problem that I have had with this trailer is axle problems, worn spring shackles, water leaks, broken cloths hanging bar in front closet, sliding closet door track coming loose. water heater problems. drawer slide problems, window valances coming loose, and problems with the motor for the slides.

I like the floor plan of my trailer, but the quality of Forest River trailer leaves a lot to be desired. Thia is the last Forest River Trailer that I will ever buy
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Old 11-13-2010, 07:50 AM   #2
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With all of the comments with your 1st post, you failed to mention if you bought this new, or 2nd hand, and how long you have had the trailer. If you bought this new, then the dealer should have addressed these problems from day 1.....that is when you said bad things started. If you bought this used, then a 3 year old trailer is going to have a some problems, especially if it has been well used. The pin box crack sounds like the most serious, and should not be expected....ever.

This is a forum for Forest River owners. We are not associated with Forest River, other than owning their product. Regarding the pin box crack, you should contact Forest River.......that could be a serious problem.
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Old 11-13-2010, 07:56 AM   #3
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Question

It could also be indicative of a severely overloaded camper.
All the other issues seem to point to the same conclusion.

Have you EVER weighed it loaded for camping?
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Old 11-13-2010, 05:20 PM   #4
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Now that I think further on this:

The frame is probably not made by Forest River, even though they used it to build the camper. I would think that hitch pin box probably came to Forest River as part of the frame. The axles and shakles are not made by Forest River....they also probably came with the frame. Now, Forest River does have the responsibility of buying quality parts, but might not have in this case.

The slide and motor again are an outsourced product.

The water heater is not made by Forest River....that would either be Atwood or Suburban.

Forest River has the ultimate responsibility for the quality of the total package, but with all of the outsourced parts that would be hard to control.

I agree with Lou.....sounds like this trailer has maybe been overloaded, or has a lot of rough miles on it.
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Old 11-13-2010, 09:08 PM   #5
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I bought the 5th wheel new in June of 2007. The problem with the axles was excesssive tire wear on the outside edge of the tires. The excess tire wear occurred when the trailer was less thn 9 months old and had less than 3000 road miles on the tires. This was caused by improper alignment of the axle to the trailer. The camber and toe-in of the axles was not set properly and caused excessive tire wear on the outer edge of the tire. It took me about 4 months to get reimbursed from Alko for the repair of the axle problems. If you look on the web there were quit a few people that were having trhe same issue with Alko axles on Forest River Trailers.

To answer your question about the trailer being overloaded as a cause of my problems. This is not the case. I have weighed the trailer and truck at the local Flying J Travel Plaza, The GVWR on the trailer is 11,750 pounds. The loaded weight of the rear axles on the trailer is 8,820 pounds. The weight on the king pin is 1,420 pounds. That is a total weight of the trailer and cargo in the trailer at 10,240 pounds. That puts the GVWR for the trailer at 1,510 below the maximum GVWR. As for the trailer having a lot of rough miles on it, this is also not true, unless you consider driving at 60 to 65 MPH on highways as rough use.
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Old 11-13-2010, 09:36 PM   #6
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Sorry to say it does sound like a "Monday Camper."
Hung over at both Forest River AND Lippert.
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Old 11-13-2010, 10:35 PM   #7
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Didn't Lippert trailers have an issue with the frame cracking on the extended portion of the 5th wheel that put more stress than normal on the pin box??? I am wondering if that could be the problem causing the cracks in the pin box.

I can't remember all of the details but maybe some older members might have some intel on this subject....
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Old 11-14-2010, 12:19 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bsmall View Post
Didn't Lippert trailers have an issue with the frame cracking on the extended portion of the 5th wheel that put more stress than normal on the pin box??? I am wondering if that could be the problem causing the cracks in the pin box.

I can't remember all of the details but maybe some older members might have some intel on this subject....
After seeing your post about Lippert frame problems, I did some research on cracked welds on Lippert frame pin boxes. I was amazed at how many posts I found on different forums about problems with cracks in Lippert pin boxes where they attach to the frame. Thanks for the information.
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Old 11-14-2010, 12:37 AM   #9
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Old 11-14-2010, 01:21 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tinyphil View Post
After seeing your post about Lippert frame problems, I did some research on cracked welds on Lippert frame pin boxes. I was amazed at how many posts I found on different forums about problems with cracks in Lippert pin boxes where they attach to the frame. Thanks for the information.
Well I hope you can fiind out more information and a suitable fix for your problem, glad it helped.
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