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 > Quality within the Forest River line of Trailers

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RobWNY

Jamestown, NY

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Posted: 03/07/18 11:08am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Does anyone have any idea which Forest River trailers are better than the others within their company? If you wikipedia Forest River, the company explanation is more like spaghetti than anything else. When you think you have things figured out, they create a new company, stop making this brand and revive that brand and so on to just confuse the consumer further. Within the company there's Prime Time Manufacturing, Forest River, Coachman, Shasta, Palomino, and on and on, can anyone say this trailer is better than that trailer if within the same price point? For instance, I'm considering a Salem Hemisphere and an Arctic Wolf. Both within a couple grand of each other and both are similar in size and options offered. Is one better than the other? I have no clue!

donn0128

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Posted: 03/07/18 12:41pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Let asking price be your guide.
FR is no different than any other. Thor owns a whole raft of names too. In fact Thor is probably the largest TV builder right now. They make good, OK, and junk just like FR.


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kerrlakeRoo

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Posted: 03/07/18 01:50pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

For starters, you may want to let RV Trader and RVT.com do some of the work for you.
Use their advanced search feature, fifth wheel, Forest River, and then the sub brands you listed and even the model numbers. Let them show you the range of prices and you have your answer as much as that can be answered.
They build almost identical floorplans under many different names. With some, as the materials improve, prices increase, (ie; corian countertop vs laminate) The company doesnt always increase the time allowed for assembly. So the price points change based on the cost of the materials.

In general with most low to mid priced lines the changes will revolve around the following

Outer skin and framing. Alum frame and glass skin vs wood frame and luan with alum siding.

Wood cabinetry vs plywood vs particle board.

Flooring, particle board and foam vs Tongue and groove wood OSB.

Solid surface countertop vs formica.

Higher priced units may get bigger tanks, which means frames, axles, etc all have to be slightly heavier to carry the increased weight.

While all brands use bascically similar appliances, as price point increases, use of slightly larger reefers, and furnaces will occur.

But with every single aspect of the unit being planned to the n'th degree for cost and weight savings, Quality control, which is a cost, that doesnt add a single inch to the size, or lighten the unit by a single pound, gets minimal attention.

2001400ex

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Posted: 03/07/18 01:58pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Like anything, price will be a determination factor in quality. On the toy hauler side, wolf pack and XLR boost are the cheapest, Shockwave/sandstorm/stealth are middle of the road. And thunderbolt and vengeance are the highest end. What that means is they have more solid construction and better components with fancier features. It does not mean the build quality is any better. My buddies thunderbolt has had as many issues is my stealth. But he has some cooler features than I do.


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ScottG

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Posted: 03/07/18 02:45pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Our Wildcat served us well for 13 years and with the exception of the metal frame underneath, it was about the same overall build quality as my Arctic Fox.


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ACZL

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Posted: 03/08/18 07:21am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We had a '06 Cedar Creek Silverback and was very happy w/ all aspects of the coach while we owned it. Tho you didn't mention it, IMO, CC ranks high in my book for quality.


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RobWNY

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Posted: 03/08/18 07:48am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks for the input everyone. Not sure if I'll be able to pull off a deal or not. I just learned that interest rates in New York are much higher now than they were when we bought our last camper. Our credit score is 800+ and the best rate the dealers I'm working with can get locally is 7.25% I may have to work the deal and then look outside of my area for a loan. That percentage rate for excellent credit is crazy!

laknox

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Posted: 03/08/18 08:00am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

RobWNY wrote:

Thanks for the input everyone. Not sure if I'll be able to pull off a deal or not. I just learned that interest rates in New York are much higher now than they were when we bought our last camper. Our credit score is 800+ and the best rate the dealers I'm working with can get locally is 7.25% I may have to work the deal and then look outside of my area for a loan. That percentage rate for excellent credit is crazy!


Don't be afraid to shop out of state, so long as the numbers work for you; different dealers use different lenders. Just know that the local dealers will almost certainly put you to the back of the line for any work they do, if they'll service your rig at all. Be sure to find a brand that will allow qualified independent mobile RV service techs to perform warranty work so you don't have to deal with this industry-wide b.s. Also, look into a HELOC loan. Just got an offer the other day for 2.99% for 12 months with 5.x% after that.

Lyle


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ACZL

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Posted: 03/08/18 09:58am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Look at credit unions as well for interest rates. Got ours last year for under 3%. Once you find a RV you like, google it to see if other out of state dealers like laknox said to get a better price. We did and saved over 9K and purchase price was STILL lower than that of a NY dealer. Sure we had to pay NY taxes, but less of 'em. I too had exact same prob that laknox said about getting service/warranty work done.

RobWNY

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Posted: 03/08/18 10:16am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks, I'll be exploring every option before throwing in the towel!

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