Please allow me to preface this post: I know nothing about Phoenix Cruiser. This is based from a "Good Sam Action Line" problem that was printed in the Late Fall 2011 issue of "Highways" regarding the company. (Plus, it is just a good idea regardless of the manufacturer/dealer).
If you order new, make sure you have a written, signed contract spelling out the terms of your order. The contract also needs to detail what happens to the deposit money if the order is cancelled by either party, possibly contingent on the circumstances.
I would never give anyone deposit money without a signed purchase/order contract and I would think twice if any company is willing to accept a deposit without a signed contract in place.
This is a very interesting and concerning thread. I don't see that manufacturers are publishing front and rear axle weigh ratings, and the actual delivered vehicle axle weights. How would a consumer know whether a large rear storage area is meaningly useful? If the delivered vehicle is near capacity on rear axle, the storage area would be useless (except for a couple of lawn chairs!). Here I've been looking at floor plans where holding tank placement and rear axle weight ratings might be more important ! Who knew.
When I ordered my unit, I asked about the OCCC I would end up with - they provided that number and it was way more than enough for us. My rookie mistake was not asking about the individual axle weights. I was moving from an Airstream trailer and this was our first motorhome. I got bit my first time out - never again. The only tried and true method is to weigh it empty to see what you have to work with (just do it before you sign on the dotted line or have an escape clause written into your contract if you order one - which is what I should have done had I known)
There is a Ford document - SVE Bulletin - Q-18. It is a 17 page "guideline" for manufacturers to follow. It appears that many units that are built (mine included) do not seem to adhere to the section I have included below. This is the text from the Q-18 R5 version of the doc, dated Oct 2003 - I have not done much hunting to see if it has gone through a sixth or subsequent revision.
****************** Ford SVE Bulletin Q18-R5 in part:
The following sections contain guidelines that are surrounded by either a single box or a double box. Those items in a double box are considered "Minimum Requirements" (MR) and must be followed by participants in the various Ford quality programs in order to remain in compliance with program requirements. Those in a single box are considered "Other Quality Focused Characteristics" (OC) and are optional, but strongly recommended...................
II. COMPLETED VEHICLE WEIGHT ANALYSIS
(the next two sentences are surrounded by a double box in the actual document)
Ford requires a weight analysis to be performed on the complete vehicle. Some considerations for such analysis are as follows:
• The Maximum Vehicle Loading should include the Unloaded Vehicle Weight (UVW), 150 pounds for each passenger in all designated seating positions and sufficient payload capacity for reasonable assumptions of cargo and trailer tongue weight. The maximum vehicle loading shall not exceed the OEM chassis Gross Axle Weight Rating (GAWR), nor the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR), as identified on the front cover of the "Incomplete Vehicle Manual" (IVM).
• Avoid rear frame extensions or vehicle configurations that may allow the customer to distribute the vehicle load so that significant front unloading can occur. Ford recommends no less than 35 percent of the total loaded vehicle weight be maintained on the front axle for most vehicles included in this report. The E-450 should be no less than 32 percent. The F53 with a GVWR of 20,500 pounds or more should be no less than 34 percent (or 30 percent for any F53 with a tag axle). Inadequate front- end loading could adversely affect the steering and braking characteristics of the vehicle.
• A road test should be conducted on a completed vehicle with a payload representative of the user's likely worst-case application. This test is recommended to qualify the ride and handling characteristics and support the weight distribution analysis.
Welcome to the club!! When I ordered my Outlook, I was told I would have about 2000# of OCCC - great! - I thought. Once we got it home, I discovered (see my posts from 2 yrs ago if you want the gory details) through many trips to the scales, that our Outlook's empty weight should have been 300 lbs. lighter on the rear axle - should have had 1,000 lbs. to work with, only have 700 - (according to Ford's recommendations).
Needless to say, I am a very unhappy camper - we threw out a bunch of stuff, moved as much forward as we could - I only travel with 5 gallons of fresh water - when we leave, we are 900-1,000 lbs under gross - 2,000+ under gross combined, but our rear axle is still always around 150 lbs overweight. We have no where else to move the weight forward.
While I realize Winnebago is not the only manufacturer that apparently can't properly design a motorhome, this will be the only one I ever buy from them. I have since found several that actually paid attention to weight distribution when they designed their units. With today's CAD/CAM processes, there is no excuse for designs like this.
I don't know about paying $2400.00 - I paid out of my pocket to have one installed after we blew our tranny. The total bill was around $1300.00.
We now have 8600 total towing miles on the Escape with 3700 of those miles with the Remco pump.
We are on our 2nd set of LaFuma chairs. The first ones were very comfortable and we used them for 6 years. Those chairs had the padded cushion and it was a pain if they got wet. We now have the black mesh LaFuma chairs which are great. We used them in our screen room at our site the last 2 winters in Fl. They do put you to sleep. We looked at other brands but found nothing to compare to the LaFuma. The chairs do last a long time.
That is one of the reasons I don't want Lafuma. I like the mesh netting instead of cushion. Cushions make no sense for us since the chairs stay outside 24/7 when we camp and often a rainstorm will blow through w/out warning. By the time those cushions dry it would likely be time to head home.
I am still searching for a good zero gravity chair that is lightweight (i know by design they can only be but so light, but have found some are much heavier than others) and with the mesh netting vs cushions.
We bought two Lafuma's within the last year - they make them with a mesh (no cushion) - Futura Clipper is the model - we were in an accident last year that crushed my wife's spine - after massive surgery and a year's worth of recovery, she loves the Lafuma - we tried several others - no comparison. We keep one of them in our vehicle at all times - she won't leave home without it.
Has anyone had trouble getting their money back after the 5 years and not needing to use the warranty service? Having that 5 year money back if you don't use it clause would make the decision to purchase the policy a good bet in my opinion. Any horror stories on people not getting their money back? How long have RV insurers been offering this 5 year money back stuff?
Not related to an RV, but in the last 3 years I have cancelled two extended warranties and have gotten a refund with no problem. The first was on my Honda Goldwing - after it was totaled in an accident, I decided to give up riding - Honda promptly refunded my EW money. I then traded in my diesel truck that was used to haul our Airstream and Goldwing (in the truck bed) when we decided to buy the motorhome. Ford promptly refunded my EW money. In both instances, the EW's were factory purchased - not a third party warranty. Those are the only two extended warranties I have ever purchased on any product.