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Old 07-24-2012, 12:21 PM   #1
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Not a happy camper!!

This is our first trip in our 2013 Columbus 320rs. The problems keep coming..... The bedroom AC sounds like a jet plane when the compressor kicks in. The water heater cold water hose leaked and FILLED the undercarriage of the camper so now all the insulation is soaked!!!! The cable wiring was WRONG!!!! The kitchen sink drain leaked and soaked the floor and under the cabinet. We LOVE the layout and really liked the 5th wheel.... But if everytime we camp I have to spend this much
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Old 07-24-2012, 01:05 PM   #2
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So sorry to hear about these issues. I have to wonder about before and during the PDI and why all this went unnoticed or unfixed by your service team. I can understand about the cable wiring but there should had been signs of the other issues before your arrival for pick up.

Recommend getting it back to service to get it fixed right away. They should be able to open up areas and taking care of the soaked insulation.
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Old 07-24-2012, 01:32 PM   #3
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The Bedroom AC issue is a known problem and it's actually a Dometic issue, not Forest River. But...your local dealer should be able to help you with it. They installed a grommet "fix" kit on ours and that quietened it down considerably, but not enough to please the service manager so he is working with Dometic to get a replacement AC.

We too had the cable/satellite wiring done incorrectly - and again, the dealer handled getting it fixed. The problem lies in the screw-on connectors. Forest River acknowledges they need to be replaced with CRIMP style connectors.

As for the water leaks - fortunately I haven't encountered any of those problems. In fact, the bedroom AC noise issue, cable/satellite wiring issue and a couple of more very minor issues (no key to the front storage, bent rail on bedroom door, doorknob issue on bathroom) is all we've had go wrong in 30 nights of camping so far - and our local dealer has been very quick to get repairs done in every case.
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Old 07-24-2012, 01:53 PM   #4
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A mistake people often make is rushing through the PDI. The last three RVs I bought the wife and I used a checklist that I downloaded from the internet. You should always schedule the PDI for first thing in the morning and allow enough time for the PDI to where you feel comfortable that the RV is ready to be used. If the PDI last all day, so what, one dealer bought us lunch during the PDI. One motorhome I bought the wife and I spent the night in the coach before we would agree to the PDI. Don't think about imposing on the dealership, it's your money and if you leave the lot happy the dealer will also be happy. It's always best to be a happy camper!

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Old 09-16-2012, 10:59 PM   #5
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good point, Jayhawk! We were both naive and lucky with our first 5er. We will be more careful this time when we take delivery. Thanks for the checklist.
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Old 09-17-2012, 06:13 AM   #6
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When we picked up our Columbus the dealer scheduled us for noon (after lunch) and we got done ~ 5:00. They were very patient and covered EVERYTHING!! Then we stayed on the lot for 2 nights. Could have stayed longer but we were comfortable with leaving. As with any unit there is a learning curve!!! So our dealer, service dept and the walk through tech is in our cell phone. We have only had to call once for an issue!!!
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Old 09-17-2012, 06:42 AM   #7
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The dealer should preform their own setup and repair of items from factory/delivery to dealer before a customer goes through their PDI. When you get reports of things going bad during and/or just after the PDI I would encourage users of this forum to ALSO include info on the dealer they bought it from.

Allydaven - who is ypur dealer and did the dealer follow up and make things right for you or did the dealer's service dept fall on their face? Owner of Columbus camper want to know about problems that arise. We also want to know about good and bad dealers.

And you know dang well that Forest River, Columbus, and plenty of dealers troll on this forum board. They may not post here, but they are on here reading.
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Old 09-18-2012, 06:44 AM   #8
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Agreed that the PDI should catch most of the problems. We bought our new 2013 Sabre from Collier in Rockford Illinois. They "briefly" went through it with us, we asked some questions that we could think of, and off we went. Wished we would have had that checklist when we picked it up!

By the time we got back to home in Wisconsin and opened the RV, we had a light hanging by the wires and swinging away. Tried to tighten it back up and found that there was nothing in the ceiling to screw it too. Think that Collier might have known that when they got it in? Would think it had done the same for them?

Very disappointed - first that our RV left the Sabre plant in the condition it was in (so many problems that they had to take it back, keep it for 2 weeks to get them all done) but knowing that most of the issues could have been caught by the dealer and weren't even paid attention too, is just frustrating.

We bought the RV in May and had it back multiple times over the summer. Now we just called again this week and the service manager Jerry acted like he didn't even know who we were! Funny, I guess they must get so many back that they lose track of who is who????

Keep at them. I hate doing this as it makes you feel like you are the bad guy, but you've bought too large of an investment not to make sure that it gets taken care of.

I believe that Forest River has a great product, but someone really needs to take note of the problems that are leaving the factory and get them taken care of BEFORE they escalate to the customer.
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Old 09-18-2012, 07:11 AM   #9
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I think most people get confused with the factory responsibility, a PDI and a systems familiarization by the customer. These expensive units should come off the assemby line with all systems go, meaning that everything works and all construction completed to some quality standards. A PDI should be completed by a dealer before the unit is sold to ensure the factory did their job. It is also understood that transportation of units may cause some minor issues. The customer familiarization and inspection should only be intended to familiarize the customer with how the systems function and any questions a customer may have about functionality. It annoys me to no end that a large portion of responsibility is placed on a customer to inspect, test and correct factory mistakes or poor quality. It is also understood that some systems may malfunction after delivery. This is where a warranty kicks in. Having said all that, and reading hundreds of posts about problems with new units, it is my belief that most issue are related to poor quality control and workmanship at the assembly line. I also believe that this is not unique to Forest River. I think it is an industry wide problem that exists because consumers do not demand quality.
nuff said
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Old 09-18-2012, 07:19 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rugged Brown
I think most people get confused with the factory responsibility, a PDI and a systems familiarization by the customer. These expensive units should come off the assemby line with all systems go, meaning that everything works and all construction completed to some quality standards. A PDI should be completed by a dealer before the unit is sold to ensure the factory did their job. It is also understood that transportation of units may cause some minor issues. The customer familiarization and inspection should only be intended to familiarize the customer with how the systems function and any questions a customer may have about functionality. It annoys me to no end that a large portion of responsibility is placed on a customer to inspect, test and correct factory mistakes or poor quality. It is also understood that some systems may malfunction after delivery. This is where a warranty kicks in. Having said all that, and reading hundreds of posts about problems with new units, it is my belief that most issue are related to poor quality control and workmanship at the assembly line. I also believe that this is not unique to Forest River. I think it is an industry wide problem that exists because consumers do not demand quality.
nuff said
I agree 100 %
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Old 09-18-2012, 07:20 AM   #11
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Rugged Brown, well stated and very true.
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Old 09-18-2012, 07:34 PM   #12
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Agree, well said by all. Like many we still love the look and feel of our new Sabre, however like many posts I have seen we also have had numerous small issues. As well we have a significant issue with the fit and finish of our roof which I posted on in May. To be fair both our dealer bluenose Rv and warranty Manager Gary who was engaged by Sabre Sam ( best part of FR service so far has been the online assistance offered by Sam) have acknowledged in writing the roof and other issues and have committed to address at the end of the season in october. I'm am hopeful the issues will all be addressed and we will have many happy camping years with our Sabre.

However as stated well here I truly believe it would take only a few more hrs in quality control and proper assembly and most issues would have not occurred. A very small percentage increase in assembly cost would increase customer sat multiple times...seems like a no brainer! While certainly I have seen some posts that may possibly be too negative to forest river, I also see way too many post defending this poor quality control, reasonable threads like this are great and I trust Sabre Sam will pass on for future improvements as well as keeping collective pressure on FR to fully honor the warrenties or beyond to correct what appears to be some poor quality model yrs.
We may have just been lucky, but never had as many issues in 8 yrs of ownership with our first TT as we have had in one with Sabre.
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Old 09-19-2012, 08:00 AM   #13
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We share a lot of what you are experiencing and saying. We love our 32RCTS Sabre floorplan but are dispapoointed witgh each newly discovered defect. We wonder why so many of our issues were not corrected at the factory or better yet prevented in the first place by a better mfg process.

We've toured several RV mfg facilities and the one thing we noticed in common with all of them was how fast the units moved through the line. Maybe they need to slow down a bit (We call it "Go slow to go fast")

I work for a very large global manufacturing co and we learned many years ago that you cannot aqchive high quality performance by inspection. You control quality by eliminating manufacturing (& design) defects at the time of production (or development) through systematic &
continuous process improvement. I guess Palomino RV (& others too) have not yet figured that out.
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Old 09-19-2012, 08:55 AM   #14
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They'll learn when the RV's imported from China start rolling in.
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Old 09-19-2012, 01:19 PM   #15
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One of the biggest problem we have seen is that someone from Forest River knows about a problem and then chooses not to correct it until we bring it up. Example would be when we left our RV in Goshen for the repairs they wanted to do. Whatever they used to move it from the lot to the bay, damaged ur capture plate severely. At that point they knew about the damage and instead of doing what was right, they chose to take it off and throw it in the storage compartment. The work was completed and the transport brought it back home to Wisconsin. When he dropped it off, I asked where the plate was and we found it underneath. This was on Friday before the Labor Da weekend. We then had to contact them to tell them of the damage. Yes, they agreed to pay for the part, which we are still waiting for the check, but we had the inconvenience of not being able to move it for a week.

All could have been avoided as the part manufacturer is right there in Elkhart Indiana!

Understand that mistakes do happen, but so many can be avoided for the customer to find if the staff was just a little proactive. They have to know that you are not just going to say "oh we'll" on a $200 part and not be upset.
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Old 09-19-2012, 02:34 PM   #16
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[QUOTE=Rugged Brown;253668]I think most people get confused with the factory responsibility, a PDI and a systems familiarization by the customer. These expensive units should come off the assemby line with all systems go, meaning that everything works and all construction completed to some quality standards. A PDI should be completed by a dealer before the unit is sold to ensure the factory did their job. It is also understood that transportation of units may cause some minor issues. The customer familiarization and inspection should only be intended to familiarize the customer with how the systems function and any questions a customer may have about functionality. It annoys me to no end that a large portion of responsibility is placed on a customer to inspect, test and correct factory mistakes or poor quality. It is also understood that some systems may malfunction after delivery. This is where a warranty kicks in. Having said all that, and reading hundreds of posts about problems with new units, it is my belief that most issue are related to poor quality control and workmanship at the assembly line. I also believe that this is not unique to Forest River. I think it is an industry wide problem that exists because consumers do not demand quality.
nuff said.


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Old 09-20-2012, 09:15 PM   #17
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Ya i hear you all I am on my 6th camper now and 3rd 5th wheel and i am always amazed on the problems we encounter with them when we leave the lot. Quality control is out the window today,and no camper is immuned from this, from the low end to the high end. My friends and I sit around the camp fire and tell our war stores with all the campers we have owned,we always say we never know what will fine when we open the door ,water line brakets snaped,door handles that do not latch,that mysterious screw on the floor,draw slides that don't slide and always a leak that you can't get at with out tearing into half the camper. Oh well the best advice I can give is to shake them down hard on the frist year so these and all the problems shake out during the warrantee,and then learn to be a fix it man.
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Old 09-22-2012, 02:53 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by wincrasher
They'll learn when the RV's imported from China start rolling in.
I was coming back from Ohio to Mo and a nice person pulled me over and told me my roof skin was flapping.I called the dealer and left a message that I was leaving my Rv in their lot. They called Last Monday saying they would get it taken care of since it was only about 4 months old.
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Old 09-22-2012, 05:36 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Cuttinchief View Post
I was coming back from Ohio to Mo and a nice person pulled me over and told me my roof skin was flapping.I called the dealer and left a message that I was leaving my Rv in their lot. They called Last Monday saying they would get it taken care of since it was only about 4 months old.
Wow! Cuttinchief, you must have been really bummed, sorry to hear about this. Were you able to to get up on the roof to see where or how it started?
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