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Old 07-29-2012, 09:58 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: St. Eugene, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 7
First time 'ouch' with our Columbus 365RL

We were excited to finally pick up our Columbus RV and roll down to New York for our first weekend away. We all know and expect that not everything will be perfect on your first time out, but we were extremely disappointed with the number of problems that came up over the weekend. Although we are confident that between our dealer and Forest River all of the defects will get corrected, it was still a bit of a bummer and not something we expected from this high end fith wheel. We are curious to get some feedback from other Columbus owners what their experience was. Here is a brief list of some of the problems.

1. We extended our pop outs to find an ugly deep scratch cut across the floor. After investigating we found that the four screws holding down the base of the dining room table were too long. There are other scrapes (scratches) from the entertainment pop out as well. Not sure what caused these.
2. The kitchen pop out cut a gouge in the moulding on the adjacent cabinet.
3. We couldn't get any reception from the outside radio. Maybe antennae not connected or not there at all?
4. Inside sound system is supposed to have surround sound, but to have surround sound doesnt there need to be a sub-woofer. We couldn't find one! Overall the sound system sounds like crap - very tinny. On top of the inferior sound from the system, one of the speakers crackled. Our Flagstaff travel trailer that we traded in had a superior sound.
5. Love our full size shower BUT the water didn't stay in the shower. Had my first shower in my new RV Saturday night to find a pool of water on the bathroom floor and leaking down into the vent. Couldn't figure it out until we noticed that the shower door moulding was put in backwards and instead of the water running down the inside shower door and then draining into the shower, the water drained outside the shower.
6. We have the double fridge and found the door hard to open. No problem with the freezer door, just the fridge. There must have been something wrong because the handle snapped off in my husband's hand.
7. Some seams on the ceiling moulding are buckling.
8. Decals on the outside have streak damage (noticed when we picked up and they are supposed to be replaced)
9. Only one of the two sockets work where the microwave plugs in.
10. Wine rack popped out
11. Bike rack?? really has anyone figured out how to load up two bikes when the wheels don't fit in the groves. We ended up having to lay the bikes down and stack them on top of each other.

Having said all this, we still love our Columbus fifth wheel, but maybe by posting our experience will help others in knowing what to double check before leaving their dealer's lot.

Happing camping all!!

The Rolling Stones

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Old 07-29-2012, 10:10 PM   #2
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Join Date: May 2012
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 18
We had pretty much the same feelings. We thought there would be some problems but not this bad.
Below is the link to the post where I listed some of ours. Repairs are on going at this time.

A few issues with Columbus 385BHS

2013 Columbus 385BHS (Grey)

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Old 07-29-2012, 11:28 PM   #3
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Location: BC Canada
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The gouges in the floor should have been noticed during the walk thru as should some of the other items.

The problems with walk thrus is that there is too much to take in, its also embarrasing to take all day going thru everything with a fine tooth comb, however it should be encouraged due to the shoddy workmanship these days.

I would suggest to any new owner to do the walkthru then suggest to the assistant that you want to be left alone for a couple of hours, take photos and make lists of what you think is wrong, discuss and get them to fix the items on the spot if they can.

Also spend the next 2/3 nights at the very nearest campsite so you can check out everything.

Hoping to collect and be home the same day or have your new rig delivered to your home is a mistake, allow 3 or 4 days anytime you buy a new rig and be prepared to stay in a hotel whilst they fix things in needs be, they should pick up the hotel bill at least.

Sorry to hear of your problems I hope your dealer was better than mine.
Nigel & Bev
Brit Driver & Canadian Naviguesser

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Old 08-01-2012, 10:36 PM   #4
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Location: St. Eugene, Ontario, Canada
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Update to first time 'ouch' with our Columbus 365RL

We had the RV for a few days before leaving for the weekend and the floor scratches only appeared after traveling a number of kilometers down the road. Before leaving we had opened and closed the pop outs without the long table screws causing any damage. The movement of the travel must have shifted something. Taking possession of a 40' RV is like taking possession of a new house and it is almost impossible to get everything right the first time, too many suppliers and manufacturers of various components. We spoke with our dealer Alexandria Camping Centre in Alexandria, Ontario, Canada, and we got the excellent service we have always experienced with them. Our Columbus is already in the shop and ALL problems are being repaired or replaced. We didn't have any plans for the next two weekends so leaving our Columbus with our dealer is no big inconvenience. We're looking forward to our next trip out!
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Old 08-05-2012, 10:32 AM   #5
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Ours is at Alexandria Camping Centre also and I agree with the service it is excellent and they try to work very hard around your schedule.
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Old 07-30-2015, 12:54 AM   #6
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Join Date: Jul 2015
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We picked up our new 2015 Columbus 365RL 5th wheel on 18 June for our trip to Kalispell, MT. During the drive up, the driver's side forward wheel severed the gas line and the water line to the refrigerator. Also, first morning taking a shower flooded the bathroom and the storage area beneath the bathroom. The wood trim above the master bed is bowing and the lights above where your head lies in bed are both cockeyed. Nothing for one of the three screws to bite into. Coming back home, the latch on the shower doors failed, and damaged the shower doors. Just can't make this stuff up. Very disappointing. Almost wish I had my Open Range back.
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Old 07-30-2015, 12:29 PM   #7
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Location: Sandstone
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Welcome to Columbus quality.....

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Old 07-30-2015, 12:37 PM   #8
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Location: Kenosha Wisconsin
Posts: 475
Guess I got a good one.. No problems other than needing to tighten a couple of screws..

2013 Ram 2500 "Cummins"
2014 Columbus 340RK
28 Days camping 2015
2013 Ram 2500 "Cummins"
2014 Columbus 340RK
Day's Camped 2017 "21"
You can find us in Egg Harbor, WI 7/14 -7/17
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Old 07-31-2015, 08:28 AM   #9
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 31
The problems with walk thrus is that there is too much to take in, its also embarrasing to take all day going thru everything with a fine tooth comb, however it should be encouraged due to the shoddy workmanship these days.

We just purchased our second new camper this spring... I can not believe the shoddy workmanship that goes into these very expensive units. Our first one was a big pop up and we had many many problems that we had to go back to the dealer and have fixed. Now our new Travel Trailer has been in once already to have the dinette squared up... and because it was not put together square the table slipped off the ledge and broke... Our dealer, PleasurelandRV in Brainerd, MN, has been great! But now we are waiting for a new audio system to arrive as it plays for a while and then the speakers cut out... apparently a problem others have had with iRV33 radios.

I think RV manufacturers need their cages rattled like the Japenese did to auto makers in the 80s. We have tried two different companies... and both were shoddy... and judging from this thread they are all pretty much full of poor workmanship.

The other thing that should be changed is the warranties. While some components have multiple year warranties.. the standard one year bumper to bumper is good if you catch a problem on first summer of camping... but in Minnesota... winter is long and eats up much of the warranty period. I think two years or three would be better... then you would have 2 or 3 summers to see if there are more issues that should be covered by warranty.
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Old 05-02-2016, 03:06 PM   #10
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I purchased a used 14 340rk used in January. After using several times, Only minor problem with toilet paper not anchored in sidewall very well. Same for shower bar that shower rides up and own on. I notice a very very slight softness on floor at entry area. No big deal. How is your unit holding up after having it for a while. Thanks for any info you can send my way....John

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