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Old 02-14-2014, 02:45 PM   #1
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Unhappy Columbus Factory Advice Needed

I have a 2013 340RK 5Th wheel. It has been at the dealer for a punch list of items since Oct 7th. As of Jan. 6th, I was told it needs to go back to factory for a fix on the one major repair. Because of the winter weather the factory (Cel Lopez) states they are at a minimum of a month behind schedule, so he has not sent a transport driver to pick it up at dealer. As of today (02/14/14), he said it could be another two months, they have to get the units that are there done to make room for the next batch (mine as well as others) to come in for warranty. He says I can use it and suggested bringing it to the FROG rally at Goshen. That I may be able to do but would need to get a hotel while there working on it. I dont mind waiting if they would at least give the hint they would work with me on some upgardes, but Cel, being new (only 7 months) is hesatant to promise anything. Any suggestions as to what you would do ? Is there anyone else at the factory that has the authority to promise upgardes in lieu of being without my unit for what appears to be at least a 6 month departure for warranty work. Thanks for any suggestions.
Paul
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Old 02-15-2014, 05:37 AM   #2
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3-6 months is NORMAL for return to factory major repair work. Although it sucks, neither your dealer nor the manufacturer can be responsible for "down time". On the bright side, people get things fixed for free and free upgrades at Goshen. I would go that route if you have the choice.

Columbus has a facebook group that is chock full of people that bought that brand in the early years when it first came out in 2012. Some of them had major repair work, factory returns, Goshen work, etc. They can also give you insight as to what, who, were to go.

Last time I checked, there was about 470 members in the group and 300 documented RVs. Rumor has it a couple of computer wizards keep up a list of Columbus owners and a map of were all the owners are located. Cool Beans!

If Columbus made a smaller travel trailer I would buy one. But for now, I will stay with the Sabre as my favorite. Sabre has a facebook group also. I don't remember the links but just type in Columbus group and Sabre group got me to them. Click join group and your in. I found a few more groups called RVing on a budget, full time RVing, RVing meetups, etc. You get the idea.

Anyway good luck with your Columbus repairs. Eventually everything gets fixed but you do have to wait forever for it to happen. There are two good stories about Sabre factory repairs I am following on this forum. Both started ugly, but turned out very pleased in the end. Forest River stands behind their products!
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Old 02-15-2014, 06:05 AM   #3
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SammySabre, I'm following all the same stories you are. Like I said I'm OK with waiting, If I had some assurance that they will try and throw in some upgrades. I also told Cel that I understand the situation their in as to weather. I guess its just bad timimg, Just seems odd the the Sabre factory is getting some units worked on while the Columbus building seems to be shut down alot.
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Old 02-15-2014, 01:17 PM   #4
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Enjoy your Columbus until they can pick it up. Stay in touch with Cel on a regular basis so he keeps your rig in his mind.
As for getting an upgrade for your troubles, though they may not promise you any, they probably would do something extra for you. I got a few when my rig went back, as did other people, too. Good luck.
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Old 02-15-2014, 01:26 PM   #5
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Well my unit went to the factory right before Thanksgiving for a major issue. As of today it has not gone into the shop. I do understand weather cannot be controlled, but if it would have been put together correctly the first time it would not be back at the factory.

They are having to replace the entire driver side wall. I really hope I will not have any leak issues when they are done. So now in my opinion I will have a refurbished camper, when I purchased a new camper and I am paying new camper price. I am not exactly a happy camper.

It appears that by the time I get my camper back the factory will have had it as many months as I used it. I owned it 7 months and I suspect it will return in May which will be 6 months at the factory.

So will have paid 6 months of note, insurance, storage fees and have denied the use of the unit. Also, the warranty will have expired by the time it gets back. I asked if it will be extended and no one can answer my question. I feel like I am going to lose big on this entire situation.

I too have asked Cel for upgrades. We shall see what they deliver.

Good luck with your issues.
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Old 02-15-2014, 05:43 PM   #6
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safetyguy, Cel keeps telling me they will extend the warranty for another year. I'm going to push for a third year as I have already paid for the second year warranty. I also dont consider the extension of warranty as an upgrade. If nothing else goes wrong, the factory loses nothing, and I gain nothing. Good luck on your repairs. What model do you have and what issues are you having w/ the wall. Sounds like I'm waiting for yours and a few others to get done before Cel will even think about sending a transport driver to pick mine up @ dealer.
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Old 02-15-2014, 05:44 PM   #7
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Oops I see its a flagstaff. sorry
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Old 02-15-2014, 06:30 PM   #8
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I don't know anyone at Columbus, but if you followed our story (Mad Momma and Mad Daddy) you know what all we went through. I did get the card of a guy at Forest River Quality Control. His name is John Miller and can be reached at the main Forest River corporate office - his number is 260-585-9009 and email is johnmiller2@forestriverinc.com

I am sure your story will end well, it sure does take a long time to get there though.

Hang in there, and keep us all posted.
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Old 02-15-2014, 07:08 PM   #9
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His name is John Miller and can be reached at the main Forest River

Do you know if he is Q.C for all brands. I have been following your story. What bugs me as I think about were all the delays up front. The unit was at the dealer on Oct 7th, and everything that needed to be done had to be approved by factory, then parts shipped out. Not a good process. Dealer spent days upon days trying to contact factory (Cel) both by phone and e-mails. I'v had Cel tell me he would call me back, only to not hear anything. Frustating !

I'm trying to be patient though as I know they are fighting the weather as I am in the Northeast.
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"DON'T FORCE IT - GET A BIGGER HAMMER'
"Paul & Laurie"
2013 Columbus 340 RK
2013 F350 Dually 6.7 Diesel
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Old 02-15-2014, 08:00 PM   #10
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He is over all forest river brands. My experience being at the factory - those guys cannot make a call during business hours. That place is loud! Email is how I was best able to communicate. There was no question what was said, and no relying on memories to finish the conversation.
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