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Topic: Carri-Lite by Carriage

Posted By: goodbyejob on 09/04/07 08:08am

Living in a small city in N. Ontario, our RV dealers are few & far between and don't usually stock the larger 5th wheels. We took advantage of several days we had in S. Ontario to go to various dealers to see what was in stock. One stop was the only Carriage dealer in ON. They had one Carri-Lite (CL) CL36XTRM5 in stock being sold as a demonstrator plus a few Cameos and the new Dumani (we toured them all). Though I have seen the odd CL on the road periodically, I had never been inside one and was quite impressed!! It has a few things I don't care for like the 2nd BR slide on the RHS that cuts down on the awning size available; I don't like the King bed option and "Lite" doesn't seem to be the operative word as, though this unit was optioned almost to the hilt, it still came in quite heavy especially if one were to consider adding the generator option. Nevertheless, we're still quite interested considering the well reduced asking price. In the meantime, I thought I'd put the word out for some thoughts from you well-travelled RV'ers regarding the Carriage line of 5th wheels especially the Carri-Lite and it's little brother the Cameo.


Posted By: Dr Jay on 09/04/07 08:12am

It is a good unit once you get all of the bugs worked out in the beginning. There sales service is not very good.


Jim & Barbara
Burlington, Massachsetts


Posted By: Washboy on 09/04/07 09:25am

I've got the "little brother", an 03 Cameo. It's traveled over 35K miles, in 27 states, all four seasons.

My coach has been back to the dealership once in four years...to install a shorter pinbox and to make some minor tweaks that I could have easily taken care of myself. But, it was under warranty.

My only complaint is with the drawer slide hardware...had several of them break due to being heavily laden and some rough roads.

Since I'm an obsessive tinkerer, I've made some significant modifications to my coach; rear view camera, 2nd A/C, 2K watt inverter/charger, built-in genset, 4 golf car batteries, roof-top satellite dish, LCD flat screen, solar battery maintainer, etc. The coach was also ransacked by burglars while in storage.

Therefore, I have been into the dark recesses of the coach on many occasions. I am still impressed with the quality of construction and materials used. IMHO, Carriage is a well designed and assembled unit. Should the fancy ever hit me to replace it, I'd likely buy another. It will certainly be on my shortest of short lists.

BTW, that new Domani is a pretty cool little 5er, dontcha think?


"If you don't know where you're going, any road will get you there."

2003 GMC Sierra SLT ExtCab 3500 D/A 4X4
2003 Carriage Cameo LXI F34CK3



Posted By: bdonpap on 09/04/07 09:26am

I used to have a Carri-Lite, and I have very high regard for them. I sold mine to a guy who just up and asked me if I would sell it, and after doing so, I really missed it. Like you, I'm not sure what the "lite" means, because it doesn't mean "light-weight." Very well made units.


1998.5 Dodge CTD, QC, SB, Guages, EZ, Suncoast VB, Mag-Hytec DD pan
2003 KZ Sportsmen, 32' Triple Slide



Posted By: Turby's_03_Stroke on 09/04/07 08:55am

One of my local dealers has one in stock. My wife and I looked it over and was impressed with the layout and quality of materials in the CL36XTRM5. My biggest issue is the overall length and weight of the unit. My F350 would be at it upper limits with this unit. Still on our short list.


Posted By: George H on 09/04/07 09:42am

What can I say, we love it. Service is a dealer thing, and a lot of those don't understand the meaning of the word. Factory has stood behind a friends Cameo when dealer couldn't seem to get it right.

I wish they hadn't dropped the 32ft model from the Carri-Lite line, will just have to keep what I've got.

I've seen some comments about the weight, check a comparable Montana and see where the "Lite" comes from.


George, Juanita and Mandie (boss Shar-Pei)
01 F350, PSD, DRW
05 Carri-Lite 32RS3


Posted By: Darrell on 09/04/07 02:06pm

We've got a Carrilite and have fulltiming in it for almost 10 years. Great trailer. The name has nothing to do with the weight of it and our F 350 is maxed for pulling it.
Would we buy a new one, probably but I think we'd stick with the 3 slides as it is heavy enough without 2 more. We've always had great service, from the factory ans also our dealer.
When I bought ours, new, I figured the litr means litening the wallet., LOL
Darrell


PEACEFUL PATTON
"In His Grip"
A true friend is someone who reaches for your hand,
and touches your heart.

"FULL-TIMING & LOVING IT"


Posted By: m&d kelly on 09/04/07 11:17pm

We had a Laredo and I researched and looked at quite a few 5th wheels. We purchased a Compass 30RLS due to the floor plan and the deal we got. Carriage make a good product. I will say that the factory response to questions is very poor.


Mike & Dava

2007 Sierra Classic 2500 HD Duramax/Allison 4X4 Crewcab, Super Springs
2005 Carriage Compass 30RLS, MOR/ryde suspension & Pinbox, Onan 3600LP
Huskey 16K EZ Roller, DigiTrac



Posted By: Ninebell on 09/04/07 01:02pm

In my opinion the Carriage trailers are an excellent trailer.We have owned Jayco and Keystone also fleetwood and none of them compare to the Carriage we now own.The structure is outstanding,I turned mine over on its left side it was stood back up on the wheels and towed 200 miles to a repair facility and repaired and to this day the coach is still holding up well.


Ninebell,the Wife,and Ginger the Shiz-zhu
2011 Chevy 3500 Duramax dually
2007 Jayco Designer 34RLQS.

My Photo's


Posted By: Dustytuu on 09/04/07 07:38pm

We have ordered a Carri lite and should be ready sometime in Sept or Oct. We ordered the brand new floor plan 36SBQ. Has an enclosed bathroom. That bedroom slide has me a little worried because of the weight but will have to see. Will probably need to buy a bigger truck and the diesel we have now is hardly broke in.


Posted By: Fishn101 on 09/04/07 11:40am

My office partner has had a Carri-Lite for about 3.5 years and has loved it. He has had no problems with it whatsover. His wifes parents traveled in Carri-lites across the USA & Candada for about 15 years and loved them.

I just bought a Cameo a couple weeks ago after shopping and comparing units for about a year and half. The dealer is adding on some extras for me in a couple weeks and I have a little list of things for him to fix but nothing big.....

They are very impressive..... Go to their web and fins a floor plan that will work for you....


2007-Cameo 30RLS - 2003 Chevy Silverado LT,Lg Bed,2500 HD, xtCab,4x4,DuraMax /w Alison Trans, Cab Controled Ride-Rite Air Bags, Cab Controled Rancho Shocks. BW Hitch 20' Northriver Boat



Posted By: NHIrish on 09/04/07 05:55pm

We have the Cameo and it is a great unit. Service with our dealer has been great...for the one little thing that needed repair. We have had a Coachman and 2 Keystones...no comparison.


2010 Carriage Cameo 32FWS
2011 Chevrolet 3500 DMAX ECLB
B&W Companion

Diplomacy is the art of saying 'Nice doggie' until you can find a rock




Posted By: goodbyejob on 09/05/07 03:11pm

George H wrote:

What can I say, we love it. Service is a dealer thing, and a lot of those don't understand the meaning of the word. Factory has stood behind a friends Cameo when dealer couldn't seem to get it right.

I wish they hadn't dropped the 32ft model from the Carri-Lite line, will just have to keep what I've got.

I've seen some comments about the weight, check a comparable Montana and see where the "Lite" comes from.


It was curious to see your reference to Keystone's "Montana". The Carriage dealer where we saw the Carri-Lite is also a Keystone dealer and says he can't keep any Montanas on the lot as they're selling like hotcakes!!'
But all the references I've received on this forum regarding the GVWR of the Carri-Lite points to where I thought it would - it's a heavy trailer to begin with! Also a real push for a 1 ton dually at 16700# GVWR though I have a certain advantage here as I'll be getting a new truck to pull the trailer we chose. That being said, if I have to look to a 4500 or a specialty MDT to pull the carri-lite safely, I may as well raise the bar and start looking at a Teton!?


Posted By: Blaster Man on 09/04/07 06:10pm

Nice rigs, but "lite" in name only.


Posted By: guardrail on 10/22/07 06:46pm

36xtrm5 is a high eight trailer? compared to what? Doubletree is stuck between 18000-20000#

glad to see all these reports on the CarriLite.

so what options do you like/not like?


2008 F450 CC Lariat White/Gold
B&W Hitch
Carriage Carri-lite CT36XTRM5

http://www.f150online.com/galleries/albumview.cfm?num=15052

Traded>>> 2003 F250 CC LB XLT 4x2
2005 Pilgrim 306RL-SS w/Hensly Arrow (sold 2-16-08)


Posted By: FiverBob on 10/09/07 12:48pm

madashby wrote:

Luvlabs,
If they are aluminum framed, what makes them so heavy?

Because they use quality materials in them in construction. No junk. Check the construction on their website such as the roof system, floor systems, double floors and fully insulated storage for four seasons usage - - and on and on.


2003 Dodge 3500 HO dually 6 speed Laramie, Jordan Controller, RDS aux tank/tool box, Bremen boards, RamAirIII, Jacobs EBrake, Air Safe 25K hitch
Carriage 36' Triple slide Fiver, Onan Gen, Sat, Prosine Inv., MORryd IS and pinbox


Posted By: luvlabs on 10/08/07 04:58pm

Madashby,

Carriage only uses aluminum framing and, even the Cameo's are heavy. Mine was 12k even out of the factory.


2014 Tiffin Phaeton 36GH
2012 Tiffin Allegro 32CA (traded)
2012 Honda Fit


Posted By: ljguidry on 10/11/07 08:18am

We have an '05 36XTRM5 and are totally happy with it. Our TV is a 1 ton GMC and we've simply not looked back since we got it. Been all over the U.S. and up into Canada with it. DW even talks about how we ought to consider full-timing in it (and we could, easily).

We've had NO problems at all. It is truly a high-quality rig.


Ellen & Loyd Guidry
Suzie2 and Ozzie2 (Brother/Sister Scottie/White Highland Terrier mix who don't know they're "D-O-G-S"-(We recently lost Suzie1 and Ozzie1 - BUMMER!!)
Grandkids every chance we get
Butte, MT

GMC 1-TON DURAMAX
36 ft. Carriage Carry-Lite



Posted By: madashby on 10/10/07 10:07am

I didn't find construction info on their website....That's why my OP...I'll look again.

Found it...I was looking for a cutaway picture!

* This post was edited 10/10/07 10:57am by madashby *


Posted By: madashby on 10/09/07 08:41am

Luvlabs,
If they are aluminum framed, what makes them so heavy?


Posted By: madashby on 10/08/07 09:53am

I was hoping they were 'lite', but the used one I found is 12,000+ lbs. Are they not aluminum framed (sidewalls, roof, ends)? I went to the Carriage website but there is no picture of the construction. Thanks!

* This post was last edited 10/09/07 08:49am by madashby *


Posted By: PA12DRVR on 09/05/07 03:26pm

[quote=goodbyejob][quote=George H]though I have a certain advantage here as I'll be getting a new truck to pull the trailer we chose. That being said, if I have to look to a 4500 or a specialty MDT to pull the carri-lite safely, I may as well raise the bar and start looking at a Teton!?[/quote] Can't say for sure about 2007, but in 2005, when we got down to brass tacks, the Teton on the short list was about $30,000 more than the Carri-Lite that was also on the short list and about $37,000 more than the KZ Escalade we ended up buying. If you're getting an MDT, I'd get it big enough to tow a Teton just in case! :)

Note: Due to invalid formatting, all formatting has been ignored.


CRL
Arguably Displaced Alaskan AGAIN !
My RV is a 1946 PA-12


Posted By: Fishn101 on 10/08/07 12:01pm

I researched various product lines for a couple years. The Carriage line just always showed up favorable. Rarely did I ever find anyone who said they wouldn't buy one again if the had the floor plan and they could afford it. I love mine and like evry RV I ever bought including boats cars and houses, there were a few minor fixes but that was it minor fixes... The comfort and quality seem to be as other said very high..

They are not light in weight. There lengths run about 1 foot longer than there label. Mine a 30RLS is 30 feet 11 inches. My office partners was 11" longer than his label.... Some other models we looked at were 3-5 ft off there label...

Good Luck in your search. Take good notes and try to enjoy the journey.


Posted By: vwsportbug on 10/08/07 05:32pm

goodbyejob wrote:

Living in a small city in N. Ontario, our RV dealers are few & far between and don't usually stock the larger 5th wheels. We took advantage of several days we had in S. Ontario to go to various dealers to see what was in stock. One stop was the only Carriage dealer in ON. They had one Carri-Lite (CL) CL36XTRM5 in stock being sold as a demonstrator plus a few Cameos and the new Dumani (we toured them all). Though I have seen the odd CL on the road periodically, I had never been inside one and was quite impressed!! It has a few things I don't care for like the 2nd BR slide on the RHS that cuts down on the awning size available; I don't like the King bed option and "Lite" doesn't seem to be the operative word as, though this unit was optioned almost to the hilt, it still came in quite heavy especially if one were to consider adding the generator option. Nevertheless, we're still quite interested considering the well reduced asking price. In the meantime, I thought I'd put the word out for some thoughts from you well-travelled RV'ers regarding the Carriage line of 5th wheels especially the Carri-Lite and it's little brother the Cameo.



Now who told you they were the only Carriage dealer in ON? Our dealer is in Bayfield ON (near Goderich/Grand Bend) and they had 3 or 4 different Carri Lites on their lot a couple of weeks ago. Can't imagine that they've sold them all. End of year (and '08) pricing seemed to be VERY attractive - thankfully we're not in the market for a new one this year so we can save our money for now.....


VeeDub
2006 Carriage Cameo LXI F35FD3
2006 Ford F350 Dually


Posted By: R&L on 10/10/07 10:19pm

We have an '04 Carri-Lite and really like it. We've had several problems we took to the dealer for repair. We were at the factory this summer and had to pay to have several of the dealer repairs redone. If you can do the repairs yourself your better off, even if it's covered by warranty. I don't think the Carriage dealers/repair shops are any worse than any other, they all seem to cut corners if they can. If you can take your coach to the factory for repair you'll be happier with their work than a dealer. We've logged about 25,000 miles on ours with no major problems. While at the factory we took the tour and were not impressed with any of their new products. We were unimpressed with the peep hole in the entry door and that held true with everything else we saw. I believe they still put quality in their products, it's the interior design we were the most critical of. If you find a floorplan and interior you like, buy it, you won't be sorry.


Rich
2004 Carri-Lite CL36CK3 - Triple Slide
5000W Onan Generator - Directv Satelite dish
2004 Ford F450 6.0 diesel dullie
34 gal main with 33 gal Auxilliary Fuel Tank
Easy Rider 20K Air-Ride Hitch


Posted By: all3littleones on 10/11/07 07:44am

If you go the the Carriage web site, click on "find dealers" enter your postal code you will see that there are 3 dealers in Ontario. With the Canadian buck doing so well right now it would be a good time to buy. We bought ours when the dollar was at 65 cents and we really paid a premium. BTW when you look at the weights of all the Carriage units you will see they are not light... and you will need an A drivers license to haul anything over 10,000 lbs in this province.


2004 Dodge 305/555 3500 SRW 48RE 4WD QC SB
Pullrite Superglide, Jordan
2005 CameoLXi F34CK3


Posted By: fulltimer5er on 10/08/07 11:05am

We have the 05 36KIQ which they don't make anymore, Light they are not we have the gen the W/D fireplace and lots more and we are 13525 empty with max at 16800 with all our junk we set at 15800 and pull with a 05 Dodge duelly great combo fantastic home you'll love it.


2005 Dodge one ton duely quad cab navagation system don't want to get lost before were ready to
2005 Carriage carri lite 36 KIQ four slides {HOME}


Posted By: Navy_LDO on 10/10/07 02:16pm

Had a Carrilite and now have a Carriage - love both!! We full-timed in both with no problems and have NEVER had an issue with service or warranty! As mentioned above, service is in regard to the dealer - but have found that the Carriage dealers we have dealt with (from Virginia to Maine to Kansas) have all been great - and warranty is not just a word with Carriage. If you are getting a good deal, I wouldn't hesitate a moment to buy! Good luck!!


2007 Dodge 3500 6.7L, 68rfe, exhaust brake, 4x4, Pull Rite Super Fifth, Prodigy
2005 Carriage CW378, Onan 5.5 LP, Astro Foil, Dual Pane Windows, Mor-Ryde IS and Pin Box. (Former Full-time House)
2006 Eagle Cap 950, 85 watts of solar



Posted By: Navy_LDO on 10/10/07 02:17pm

Had a Carri-Lite and now have a Carriage - love both!! We full-timed in both with no problems and have NEVER had an issue with service or warranty! As mentioned above, service is in regard to the dealer - but have found that the Carriage dealers we have dealt with (from Virginia to Maine to Kansas) have all been great - and warranty is not just a word with Carriage. If you are getting a good deal, I wouldn't hesitate a moment to buy! Good luck!!


Posted By: goodbyejob on 09/05/07 03:28pm

Dustytuu wrote:

We have ordered a Carri lite and should be ready sometime in Sept or Oct. We ordered the brand new floor plan 36SBQ. Has an enclosed bathroom. That bedroom slide has me a little worried because of the weight but will have to see. Will probably need to buy a bigger truck and the diesel we have now is hardly broke in.


My wife likes the CL36FDQ as well with the separate bathroom. A friend of mine who is in the business says a lot of the manufacturers are now going with a few enclosed bath models as it seems some folks are getting sick of having one choice of the ensuite bath.
Yes, that 36FDQ is a heavy mother at around 16,900# GVWR but all of them around that gross weight. The dry weight is around 13,800#. I don't know what kind of truck you have now but I would suggest you'll be needing a 1 ton dually diesel even if you feel you may never load the trailer to 16,900# with options and stuff. But that's just me - my feelings are to match the truck to the trailer's GVWR and max tongue weight even if I don't ever expect to load the trailer that heavy. Sort of like "Fudge Factor"!!??


Posted By: guardrail on 12/10/07 06:17pm

well - we did it. The order is in and the new truck is in break in mode.

New Truck

http://www.f150online.com/galleries/albumview.cfm?num=15052


Posted By: FiverBob on 12/11/07 06:57am

I think many people do not understand the history of the Carri-Lite, hence think they are getting a light trailer. It was conceived as a lighter version of the Carriage back many years ago, hence the name Carri-Lite meaning a lighter Carriage. The Carriage is a good 3 - 4000 pounds heavier when loaded out. As stated, there are lighter models in the Carriage line, still made with quality, but lighter materials and on the same assembly line as their high end models and still using all aluminum framing, not the cheaper bonded walls. The Carri-Lite is a beautiful and well made rig.
Bob


Posted By: Okie1 on 12/10/07 06:38pm

Mine is 13 years old and we really like it, no problems in the 5 years that we have owned it. When I get ready to full time I would definitly look at Carrige products. Ours is holing up extremely well for it's age.


1997 F-250 Powerstroke Extended Cab 4X4 & 2012 Sabre 34RLQS...



Posted By: Dustytuu on 12/12/07 11:04am

We have our new Carri lite. Took possession of it in Oct.
We are very happy with it.


2008 dodge 5500, diesel,Laramie
2008 Carriage Carri-Lite, 36SBQ, 4 slides,dishwasher,washer/dryer,2 fireplaces,6500 gen.
D & D
3 Schnauzers and a BIG cat

http://s6.photobucket.com/albums/y250/Dustytuu/

Kindness, and good manners are important.



Posted By: Fishn101 on 12/12/07 08:57pm

My Cameo has been great and dealer service and factory support has been great. I did a lot of homework before buying. After a couple of years of looking it was an easy pick. I have a few friends with them all with great results for years.

If you can find a floor plan that will work, a price that will work and dealer with a good reputation, you won't be sorry.


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