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Old 01-04-2018, 10:20 AM   #1
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RV Industry Death Spiral - Great Read

Just read an interesting article, a couple years old, that describes the overall "state" of the RV Industry. Well worth the time required to read.

http://rvdr-cdn3.appxtreme.com/wp-co...ompilation.pdf
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Old 01-04-2018, 10:27 AM   #2
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I got as far as the end of the index, saw there was 58 pages, and that was the end for me. I think we all know where the problem is. JUNK products, but as long as we keep buying them, nothing will change.
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Old 01-04-2018, 11:18 AM   #3
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I think for the most part most RV's are made pretty good. The only campers you hear about are the lemons.
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Old 01-04-2018, 11:28 AM   #4
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If it helps, here's a 12-page thread on that same article:

http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...al-113241.html

Personally, I think Greg makes some good points, but knowing the backstory to some of his stories- I take a lot with a grain of salt.
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Old 01-04-2018, 03:12 PM   #5
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Well..the article is a couple of years old and the industry just had a huge record year.
We're all aware of a lot of industry problems ...and I'd love to see some progress... but the death spiral doesn't seem to have started.
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Old 01-04-2018, 04:24 PM   #6
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OK, I remember reading this but my take on it is this. I haven't been over a lot of the country in the past three years, but between N. Tn and Pensacola I have seen ONE new campground, and its right on the Interstate. How do we overcome the lack of new campgrounds? Where are all these new units camping, where do the city folks store them? Folks are going to quit buying if there is no place to go.
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Old 01-04-2018, 04:26 PM   #7
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It's a long article, so I speed read/scanned it.
What I saw made a lot of sense.
Also, it doesn't let anyone off the hook (including the owners), so it's more or less neutral.
Of particular interest to me is the reason why dealers are hesitant or unwilling to provide warranty work, particularly for owners who did not buy from them. Here's a quote from the article:
"The problem with this business model is that there isnít enough profitability built in for the
manufacturer to cover the enormous costs of repair to correct problems with the products they build."
This is pretty obvious, but often denied by the manufacturers and their apologists on forums such as this one.
Another interesting problem, not often talked about, is the declining number of available campsites, and the increasing costs.
His what to do about it section is sensible, but, like the article, time consuming.
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Old 01-04-2018, 04:31 PM   #8
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OK, I remember reading this but my take on it is this. I haven't been over a lot of the country in the past three years, but between N. Tn and Pensacola I have seen ONE new campground, and its right on the Interstate. How do we overcome the lack of new campgrounds? Where are all these new units camping, where do the city folks store them? Folks are going to quit buying if there is no place to go.
I usually reserve my spaces up to a year in advance....almost have to to get the space you want.
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Old 01-04-2018, 04:44 PM   #9
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OK, I remember reading this but my take on it is this. I haven't been over a lot of the country in the past three years, but between N. Tn and Pensacola I have seen ONE new campground, and its right on the Interstate. How do we overcome the lack of new campgrounds? Where are all these new units camping, where do the city folks store them? Folks are going to quit buying if there is no place to go.
I can't speak for the rest of the country, but we live in Northern Illinois and we have tons of campgrounds around us. At least a dozen or so that I can think of just within about 50 mile radius. We've looked at many of them multiple times over the last few years searching for a seasonal site.

I only know of one (maybe two) that had a waiting list for seasonal sites and AFAIK, most if not all of them have plenty of sites open for weekend camping as well. That's not even including any of the state parks or forest preserves near us.

As for storage sites, they seem to be popping up all over the place around us. My wife and I were just commenting the other day on all the new storage facilities being built.

I don't see us running out of room any time soon.
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Old 01-04-2018, 05:58 PM   #10
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I think for the most part most RV's are made pretty good. The only campers you hear about are the lemons.
For what they endure on the road, I agree. Try hooking your house up to a truck and moving it down the highway at 60-65 MPH.
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Old 01-04-2018, 06:22 PM   #11
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Being in So. Cal you can about forget getting a campsite most of the time. I think if you are set up parking in the middle of the desert and boon-docking if an option if you like the heat and the wind. LOL. Most of the beach campsites are not big enough for something over 36' and they are all on top of each other and although the ocean is beautiful in isn't a paradise to camp there. A lot of people can't book a year out and the ones that I have tried to book ahead close off reservations for sometimes 6 months so you can't make them that long ahead. It seems like someone with some money that can afford to build a new campgroud would invest because so many of the ones there are are so old that they aren't inviting either. Take Prescott, AZ so many RV's all over and only about 2-3 campgrounds (private) and they are always full. Just my findings, thanks for listening.
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Old 01-04-2018, 06:56 PM   #12
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For what they endure on the road, I agree. Try hooking your house up to a truck and moving it down the highway at 60-65 MPH.
Wow, is that ever off base.
Houses are not intended to travel.
RV's are.
They should be built to withstand almost any kind of travelling. That's their intended use.
In fact, as the article points out (and I agree), too many break down simply because they are travelling. That is, too many (not all) are poorly built, and therefore break down more often than they should (which should be rarely).
I spent many years on cruising boats. If as many of those (built for the rigors of the sea) broke down as RV's do, nobody would go cruising.
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Old 01-04-2018, 07:14 PM   #13
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For what they endure on the road, I agree. Try hooking your house up to a truck and moving it down the highway at 60-65 MPH.
They both are built for a purpose. They know you are towing it, so it should be able to endure it. Your truck goes down the road right in front of it and it doesn't need constant attention. Lack of quality control is obvious. They drill, nail and screw into all sorts of plumbing and electric. Poor fit and finish. Low quality components.
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Old 01-04-2018, 07:16 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by camaraderie View Post
Well..the article is a couple of years old and the industry just had a huge record year.
We're all aware of a lot of industry problems ...and I'd love to see some progress... but the death spiral doesn't seem to have started.
And experts expect another record breaking year in 2018.....
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Old 01-04-2018, 09:09 PM   #15
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Wow, is that ever off base.

Houses are not intended to travel.

RV's are.

They should be built to withstand almost any kind of travelling. That's their intended use.

In fact, as the article points out (and I agree), too many break down simply because they are travelling. That is, too many (not all) are poorly built, and therefore break down more often than they should (which should be rarely).

I spent many years on cruising boats. If as many of those (built for the rigors of the sea) broke down as RV's do, nobody would go cruising.


About the only thing I can add to that is donít buy a camper. I knew there would be some things wrong with my camper and if I couldnít live with a few problems then I would trad for another camper. I have had right much go wrong with my Silverado 3500, under warranty for the most part. The rv manufacturing companies would sell there soul to save a penny. A lot of people are buying campers nowadays to live in full time and never move.
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Old 01-04-2018, 09:27 PM   #16
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I only paid $12,200 for the comfort of a house that I can pull and park anywhere. I'll deal with whatever goes wrong and fix it.
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Old 01-04-2018, 11:59 PM   #17
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I only paid $12,200 for the comfort of a house that I can pull and park anywhere. I'll deal with whatever goes wrong and fix it.
Many have paid a lot more, and still ended up with too many problems.
You may have knowingly bought a piece of junk because itís cheap, and you think you have the skills to fix it. I bet thatís not the case with most who buy RVís. They expect a product of reasonable quality, as Iím sure they were told by their salesman.
As to the increasing numbers of RVís being sold, it has nothing to do with quality, and everything to do with economics and fantasy. I wish less were being sold, so that i could find camping spots more easily.
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Old 01-05-2018, 12:18 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by jeffrapp View Post
Wow, is that ever off base.
Houses are not intended to travel.
RV's are.
They should be built to withstand almost any kind of travelling. That's their intended use.
In fact, as the article points out (and I agree), too many break down simply because they are travelling. That is, too many (not all) are poorly built, and therefore break down more often than they should (which should be rarely).
I spent many years on cruising boats. If as many of those (built for the rigors of the sea) broke down as RV's do, nobody would go cruising.
This is the most sensible and concise post made here and what I been saying since I got here.

Thanks Jeff for bringing some common sense and input here.
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Old 01-05-2018, 12:45 AM   #19
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If it’s as bad as all this I can’t wait to pick up some rich jerk’s 2 year old king aire for pennies on the dollar once he finds out camping sucks and there’s no place to stay. Seriously though it would be nice to see some new campgrounds open up. Most of these old places haven’t been improved since the 80s
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Old 01-05-2018, 04:28 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by jeffrapp View Post
Wow, is that ever off base.
Houses are not intended to travel.
RV's are.
They should be built to withstand almost any kind of travelling. That's their intended use.
In fact, as the article points out (and I agree), too many break down simply because they are travelling. That is, too many (not all) are poorly built, and therefore break down more often than they should (which should be rarely).
I spent many years on cruising boats. If as many of those (built for the rigors of the sea) broke down as RV's do, nobody would go cruising.
Some stick and brick homes are moved down the road. Definitely not any faster than 40 mph and no more than maybe 25 miles down the road, if that much.
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