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Old 08-25-2020, 12:47 PM   #61
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Originally Posted by RolnThndrCat View Post
To original poster; sorry for the troubles and hope you get resolutions soon.

I have been RVing for better part 25 years. I am not a handy man by any means so repairs have to rely on a dealer or (hopefully) respectable shop. I will learn though but know my limits.

With that said, it really all boils down to the lack of companies and people really giving a shitz about what they do/how they build and the QC involved, both at mfg. and dealers.

Now this is a Forest River forum and I do not want to trash them by any means, BUT my previous 5th and current 5th are about the biggest rolling POS I have ever had. I tried getting help and satisfaction from FR but to no avail. I hear a lot of talk on hear about how great it is to work directly with the factory ect. ect., but I have never been able to get anywhere.

Division of FR, Prime Time, had a Crusader Lite. Spent more time in the shop than at than camping. Thought I was trading up to the Wildcat. Found out it was made in the Prime Time factory by same peeps.

If I went on with the list of stuff for both of them, I would run out of room. The Wildcat, let's just say I am screwed on as since warranty went out, no more help.

May never but another FR product again. For now, dealing with it as I can.

I had an older Wilderness 22' TT, a 36' Mallard single slide TT, a Pioneer 38' double slide TT all of which predated 2006 (Pioneer was a 2006) and hardly had issue one with them. I did have a slide seal that was installed wrong that was leaking and the A/C went out while under warranty but that was it, period. The Crusader and Wildcat......

Anyways, comes down to caring about the work you do and people you sell too and that has disappeared from most industries today.

Good luck to original poster.
Quality of a product/service should start with a mission statement. Words, by themselves are black ink on paper. With that mission statement, the leadership needs to follow through. Following through is instilling pride of workmanship and coaching employees to do better. Without that ethic, QC is doomed.

I was a manager, for a time, at a large health care organization. In an effort to recreate itself, upper management came up with this overall training program to make staff and patients customers. In effect, staff would be treated with care and respect. Well, after a year into this scheme, it became apparent that upper management really was not doing what they were preaching. Upper management now wanted staff to do more with less and really weren't concerned about staff treatment. What started as low moral tanked when the organization cut staff by 10-20 percent. In my resignation letter, I stated that I could not be a part in the way they were now treating their employees. Other managers and directors were doing the same. This organization (for lack of a better term) used the mean and lean approach when trying to merge with a very respectable larger health care system. In doing so, wings at the hospital were shut down for lack of staff. The larger health care organization flatly rejected them.

So, here we have a comparison of two organizations. One who has a mission statement that was ink on paper and one who had a mission statement that meant something. Both are still in business, but the other has expanded. When in need of medical care, there is no question as to my choice.

When the mom and pop camper manufacturers first started building campers on a larger scale in the 1970's, they did take pride in their products. And, many are in use today. As some may attest, there is difficulty keeping new ones serviceable the first year. Fifty years? Not a chance!

There are quality RV products today that cost considerably more. But does it really cost that much more to put just a little more care in what is more affordable? Not until upper management realizes the company needs a mission statement and the mission statement is more than ink on paper.
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Old 08-25-2020, 01:17 PM   #62
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Although I'm not discounting the fact that the QC isn't as high as it can be, or should be in any of the newer RV's that I've laid eyes on, I do wonder if it's a bit like boats (from my experience). I've owned 2 boats myself, and my parents had 2 separate boats throughout my childhood. One thing I found, no matter if it was a pontoon, or a runabout, inboard, or an outboard engine, the more you used the boat, the better it seemed to run and perform. This could be simply because you're on the boat more often and therefore notice little things, before they become big things, but I really believe that these recreational toys don't like to sit still.

I'm guessing that the RV world is a bit the same. If you full timed in the RV, you might notice things before they became an issue, and get them taken care of, or actually be able to take care of them yourself because it was a little / simple fix. On the contrary, if you only use the rig 6-10 times a year, and that 6-10 times falls in a 4-6 month span, then things might not be noticed while they are "little". Plus, plumbing, electrical motors, mechanisms, etc are all sitting for months on end. The we drag them over crappy roads, and expect them to perform flawlessly for us, while we just want to sit back and enjoy a beer or two at the lake.
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Old 08-25-2020, 01:22 PM   #63
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So far...knock on fake wood...everything has been minor and easily fixed with my Coachmen.
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Old 08-25-2020, 02:44 PM   #64
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I recall the 80's and 90's when the Japanese auto manufacturers discovered how to build quality cars and by the Obama years had almost put the American manufacturers out of business. American manufacturers finally figured out how to build a quality automobile, but by the time they did Toyota had taken over the number one spot from G.M. Perhaps the Japanese should start building travel trailers and 5th wheels.
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Old 08-25-2020, 03:10 PM   #65
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I recall the 80's and 90's when the Japanese auto manufacturers discovered how to build quality cars and by the Obama years had almost put the American manufacturers out of business. American manufacturers finally figured out how to build a quality automobile, but by the time they did Toyota had taken over the number one spot from G.M. Perhaps the Japanese should start building travel trailers and 5th wheels.
This idea has been floated many times before and it'll probably never happen mostly because they don't really use RVs in Japan. It's such a small country that they really don't have the wide open spaces to go camping like we do here.
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Old 08-25-2020, 03:22 PM   #66
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Amen. Compared to any other big ticket consumer product, late model RVs are junk.

I totally understand the need to vent.
And it wont get better until the RV industry adopts the car and truck consumer model.
That means Monroney Labels, Lemon Laws and three year factory warranty repair at any dealer.
Of course with more government regulation, the price of RV's would go up.
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Old 08-25-2020, 04:16 PM   #67
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Originally Posted by Wishart View Post
I recall the 80's and 90's when the Japanese auto manufacturers discovered how to build quality cars and by the Obama years had almost put the American manufacturers out of business. American manufacturers finally figured out how to build a quality automobile, but by the time they did Toyota had taken over the number one spot from G.M. Perhaps the Japanese should start building travel trailers and 5th wheels.
Never going to happen unless some Japanese investors buy a RV corporation.
Japan has virtually no RV culture and neither do any Asian country, as opposed to car culture.
And forget any European RV manufacturers flooding North America with their RVs.
The bottom line is that the costs of shipping RVs over the Pacific or Atlantic, make it unprofitable. The average TT here takes up the space of 3 import cars.
Sure it would be nice but there's no monetary incentive for it to happen.
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Old 08-25-2020, 06:45 PM   #68
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Most of the stuff coming out of Goshen is junk. That's why I elected to by my RV from a California Co called Lance. Their quality is top notch and they cover all the corners: electric stabilizers, twin batteries on sliding trays locked up, triple 20# LP tanks, Solar panel, 3'ft dinette slide with full queen bed, walk around queen bed with under bed storage, twin hanging closets with a third for jackets, single discharge for waste water, electric tongue jack, oversize roof ladder, and four season construction with heated floors, holding tanks and four vents! You get what you pay for!
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I bought a Lance camper for the truck bed in 2000, after finding out my old camper didn't fit my new pickup. Anyway, we have gone four wheeling with it on, on dirt roads, through tunnels, and four wheel through sand with it. It was such a trooper, but the family got bigger and I wanted a 5th wheel because we have a gooseneck horse trailer and I like the way it pulls. Bought a new 2018 in 2017 and nothing but trouble. None of it is with the components (fridge, A/C, batteries, tanks, or stoves) everything has been with the put together parts. Axle fell off, frame cracked after the "repair" wall is buckling outlets falling out of walls, etc. But I am so glad we didn't get rid of my Lance! Even though I took out a welded overhead sign--no leaks and no problems. The only thing I ever fixed was I put in new batteries and new fancy LED lights. Still have the 5th wheel only cause I paid cash for it so it's a lost cause.
I think a lot of people think they will void warranty if they fix something, but in reality the dealers keep them in for repairs so long that you don't have time to try it out before the 1 year wears out. Even if you buy extended warranty they won't pay for anything because they call it normal wear and tear.
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Old 08-25-2020, 07:31 PM   #69
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Not siding with FR ( or any manufacturer) or trying to argue, but we as buyers are part of the problem. The forums are filled with examples of buyers anxious to get their new RV home or disappointed that it is a few days late to the promised delivery. Then there are those who are so excited to get their new toy that they accept units without thorough inspections or "We Owe you"s". Like it or not the economy operates on supply and demand. If we all stopped buying RVs that were not up to expectations quality would improve. This is what drove the auto industry as US sales dropped in favor of a higher quality foreign maker. All these large companies are stock companies and no one ever kept their job by recommending giving up $1000 of profit for an improvement that the customer was not willing to pay for. It is unlikely that these driving forces will occur in the short term therefore it is unlikely there will be a need to improved quality.
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Old 08-25-2020, 07:54 PM   #70
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Started with a 2015 FR Evo one slide out. Schwintec slides. Never ever again. Left me on the side of the road 100 miles from home. Slide is out. No emergency slide retraction for me. Supposed to press a button 6 times on the control module once you find it. NOT . Shear muscle from a nice young Canadian man , and got it in. Sold the unit and it was still having slide problems. Onward. Battery bracket broke and dropped the battery . Oven quit. Stabilizer jacks quit. Trim falling off, and on and on. Anyways , sold that baby and bought a 2005 Keystone Cougar. Back when quality still existed. Like new unit. Love it. NO problems and with the slide out being a geared system it works hard and fast. Best move I ever made. Like me, older is definitely better!!! Happy trails
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Old 08-25-2020, 08:15 PM   #71
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Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
So, the answer is no RV companies besides Forest River. Thank you.

BTW, Forest River is one of over two dozen manufacturers based in the US and over 50 worldwide.
I was kinda stating that if you buy a Prime Time Manufacturing
Coachmen RV
Shasta RV
Palomino RV
Forest River RV
Dynamax Corporation
Glaval Bus
Elkhart Coach
Starcraft Bus
AmeraLite
Cargo Mate
Continental Cargo
Haulin Trailers
Lightning Trailers
Rance Aluminimum Trailers
US Cargo
Berkshire Pontoon
South Bay Pontoon
Trifecta Pontoon
Qualridge
Rockport Commercial Vehicles
Berkshire Coach
East to West
Battisti Customs

You are buying a Forest River, and that is a lot. But if you go to Forest River to complain about one of these other brands, they say they are not responsible. I know this because we were almost killed buy our Primetime trailer. Thor is the same way, they are buying up all the brands to eliminate competition.

Our axles were tack welded on and the rear axle ripped off while going the downhill side of a pass.
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Old 08-25-2020, 08:20 PM   #72
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I kinda find it interesting when someone complains about a trailer brand but the complaints are about components supplied to the trailer manufacturer. Even if you bought a lot higher quality trailer, they will often have the exact same components on there. Example is the Schwintec slides. MANY brands of trailers have those same slide mechanisms.
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Old 08-25-2020, 09:00 PM   #73
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Originally Posted by Spazz View Post
I was kinda stating that if you buy a Prime Time Manufacturing
Coachmen RV
Shasta RV
Palomino RV
Forest River RV
Dynamax Corporation
Glaval Bus
Elkhart Coach
Starcraft Bus
AmeraLite
Cargo Mate
Continental Cargo
Haulin Trailers
Lightning Trailers
Rance Aluminimum Trailers
US Cargo
Berkshire Pontoon
South Bay Pontoon
Trifecta Pontoon
Qualridge
Rockport Commercial Vehicles
Berkshire Coach
East to West
Battisti Customs

You are buying a Forest River, and that is a lot. But if you go to Forest River to complain about one of these other brands, they say they are not responsible. I know this because we were almost killed buy our Primetime trailer. Thor is the same way, they are buying up all the brands to eliminate competition.

Our axles were tack welded on and the rear axle ripped off while going the downhill side of a pass.
And I was stating that Forest River (and Warren Buffet) are a tiny fraction of the RV market. There is a lot of competition in the RV market. More than 2 dozen companies in the US and 50 worldwide.
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Old 08-26-2020, 07:54 AM   #74
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I understand the profitability thing, but in general it doesn't take any longer to do things right than it does to mess it up and have to re-do it. The workmanship on my unit is quite poor. When gutters go up towards the ends, the installer didn't care one bit that they wouldn't work. And now the dealer has to remove them and re-install. How many leaks am I going to get from that project?
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Old 08-26-2020, 08:36 AM   #75
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I agree that doing it right is sometimes no more difficult than doing it wrong.

Expanding on that, it has to be more cost effective to build something right in a factory environment than to ship out defective products and then need to correct the defects in the field, or worse yet bring the unit back to the factory to be rebuilt. That is what I don't understand about the current RV industry business model. I think most industries are very concerned about warranty costs and try to build their product right to begin with.

Besides warranty costs, the other aspect of building shoddy products is that it greatly lowers customer satisfaction.
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Old 08-26-2020, 09:23 AM   #76
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I agree that doing it right is sometimes no more difficult than doing it wrong.

Expanding on that, it has to be more cost effective to build something right in a factory environment than to ship out defective products and then need to correct the defects in the field, or worse yet bring the unit back to the factory to be rebuilt. That is what I don't understand about the current RV industry business model. I think most industries are very concerned about warranty costs and try to build their product right to begin with.

Besides warranty costs, the other aspect of building shoddy products is that it greatly lowers customer satisfaction.
Well said, Thank you. Obviously, Forest River doesn't spend much time reading it's own forum!
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Old 08-26-2020, 09:28 AM   #77
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As someone, I think PenJoe said, I have been on an exit plan for rving for a while now.

Bought my one and only MH in 2007, a 2006 Sunseeker 2860ds, and know the problems I have while being thankful it seems to be of a more robust and maintainable design than the newer ones.

Not planning on taking any more new rv depreciation debt at this point, until I do!

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Old 08-26-2020, 09:40 AM   #78
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Well said, Thank you. Obviously, Forest River doesn't spend much time reading it's own forum!
If you'll read the disclaimer at the bottom of every page, it says:

Quote:
This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Forest River, Inc. or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.
We have a handful of FR representatives on the site that try to help out members with certain problems, but that's about it.
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Old 08-26-2020, 09:57 AM   #79
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...We have a handful of FR representatives on the site that try to help out members with certain problems, but that's about it.
When they are visiting the site, their user names show up in bold, green letters on list of active users on the bottom of the main page. They visit quite a bit.

On edit: I just checked. As I type this, there are four FR people reading the site.
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Old 08-26-2020, 02:14 PM   #80
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I am sorry to hear all the sad stories of quality issues with today's rv's. My brother purchased one of the last Weekend Worriers that were made ( I think it was a 2016 ) and it literally fell apart, from the cabinets falling off the walls to the plumbing leaking all over then if that was not bad enough the entire front skin became detached and started sliding off the trailer UGH!!

My wife and I decided to purchase used. We ended up purchasing a 2000 Forrest River fifth wheel. We love it!! It's a bit dated inside and minor dents and dings outside but we only paid $6000.00 cash for it. We have not had any major issues in 4 years. The only issues I've experienced are due to my not having the owners manual so I had to figure things out myself.

If I were to give any advice, look at buying used. It saves thousands of dollars and most of the quality issues would more than likely have been fixed already.
Happy Camping.
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