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Open Roads Forum  >  Travel Trailers  >  General Q&A

 > Conclusion made: 95% of all TT's are a crapshoot

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kayzap

The great Mojave Desert

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Posted: 11/07/20 10:27pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

In the past I have bought two new Airstreams.

I just bought my third. A 1960 Airstream. The brand new ones have massive QC issues as they shove them out the door as fast as possible.

If you are in the Airstream market. I'd suggest buying used. 2017 or earlier.


1960 Airstream
Adventure is everywhere but sittin
in your chair at home. Go get some.

DaveRVman

Kansas

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Posted: 11/08/20 07:30pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I can't even tell you how many dealers I made angry when shopping around. I said "Show me anything that is not built in Indiana". They got mad every time because just about everything is built there. I've heard the employees are paid per piece, not by the hour or salary (I heard from a source but not verified).

Many companies in Indiana are owned by the same parent company, Thor. Skip Indiana. Northwoods MFG or Lance for decent quality (a bit pricier but not too bad). It's nice to watch the difference between the Arctic Fox factory and Jayco. No comparison.

whjco

Lexington, KY

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Posted: 11/08/20 07:59pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Two years ago we bought a Forest River Cherokee 274vfk. I've been very impressed with the materials and the build quality. The only repairs that have been required are the replacement of the wood screws that secure the bedroom overhead storage with bolts that go through the wood with a flat washer, lock washer and nut on the inside of the storage bin. The other repair was for the strip that anchors one side of the v-nose to the trailer body. The plastic strip that covers the screw heads came loose. I bought a $14 roll of the plastic cover material and had it fixed in less than 10 minutes. Any other work has been typical maintenance such as cleaning and repacking the wheel bearings and replacing the Castle Rock tires with Good Year Endurance Tires.

Last year we toured the factory in Topeka, IN where our travel trailer was built. Many of the craftsmen building the travel trailers are Amish and getting to view the trailers in all states of assembly was very interesting. They're efficient but not sloppy and the quality control was excellent. I've been extremely happy with the quality of our Forest River travel trailer.


Bill J., Lexington, KY
2006 Starcraft 2500RKS 25' Travel Trailer
2015 Ram 2500 Big Horn 6.7 Cummins.

2012Coleman

Florida

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Posted: 11/09/20 09:13am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

GDS-3950BH wrote:

2012Coleman wrote:

Stclairm wrote:


Are there some brands under $30k that any of you recommend who stand behind their product and don't make the consumer regret their purchase? We're ready to pull the trigger on a larger TT, then sell ours, but man, this is disheartening. I will say my local mobile RV repair guy likes Forest River, so I guess he has no problem fixing them and getting paid properly.
Yes - Grand Design. I've had personal experience with talking at length with a manager on their customer support team. I emailed them about a problem with my awning. I didn't get a return email, I got a call. The awning was detaching from the side. The warranty was long over. But they fixed it - correctly at no charge to me. My friend had the same issue with his Alpine - just out of warranty. They would not help - sorry, but your warranty period has expired they told him.

GD sent me a recall notice about an electrical issue that could cause a fire. It is very hard for me to take off work to get it to the dealer who doesn't do intake on the weekend. They authorized a mobile mechanic to do the work at my storage location.

Others will chime in and throw shade on them, but myself and a lot of others will tell you different. Research the brand on both of their forums - PM me if you want the links or just Google.

I googled Grand Design dealers in NC and found a few close to you - Bill Plemmons RV World in Winston-Salem and Raleigh. Check them out. Go and tour a few units.

I can't talk about price as it is different depending on where your located and current market. I will say that I negotiated a substantial percentage off the MSRP and got a front bedroom AC installed as part of the deal. Also - you are in a good position to negotiate. You have multiple dealers in the area for the brand, you already have a RV you can use - so you want a new one, but you don't NEED a new one. This is to your advantage. Winter is here and that's also to your advantage. So if you don't get what you want, you can just get up and leave - leaving them with your phone number. Also, don't trade in before attempting to sell on your own - it will most likely sell if you present it properly.

And yes - they put their RV's together the same as other companies and yes, they may have issues. But beating their customer service is a hard thing to do. I'm very happy with it and fully enjoy using it.

Good luck.


Well good for you. I've had personal experience also talking with Grand Designs support team more times than I care to remember.

First on a 2014 Reflection purchased 2013 which was decent as 5ers go but not without issues, some sort of major such as new axles 3 times and two trips back to the factory. Grand Designs support was spectacular.

That led to the 2020 Solitude. What a piece of garbage it turned out to be. Grand Designs spectacular support went by the wayside with the acquisition by Winnebago. The 2020 was dumped after a little longer than a year of ownership just to get away from it and them. It had frame issues that I doubt could ever be corrected other than band aid fixes.

They turned into "just another name on a box of junk".

The first thing Winnebago did was pull the rug out from under what was considered the go to Grand Design forum, which is still independently operated but renamed to mygrandrv. GD had participated in that forum for years with lots of GD personel posting. Then they started two corporate controlled ones, GDRV4life and gdrvowners, so they could moderate the posts with mods they appointed. And believe me post in a negative light towards their product and posts are edited or deleted.

I used to drink the Kool aid but abstain now days. Plenty of buyers though purchased in the last 3 or 4 years still drink that juice, but Grand Design in 2020 is not the Grand Design it they were before Winnebago, by a longshot.

In any case I am done, and after owning over half a dozen over the years I'll never own another. Were almost done building a nice cabin on a large enough wooded parcel where we will never see another person or so much as hear their noise. You all can have them and I would argue that 99.9% are a crapshoot and a waste of money.
LOL - I knew that you would reply to my post.

Your comments regarding the forums are nothing but conspiracy theories. I also stated originally that you would come along and talk about "drinking the Koolaid" - I'm sorry I edited that out before posting.

Most likely your issues are due to your approach - as the old saying goes, You can catch more Bees with Honey than with Vinegar. Taking the standard RV.net advice to extract your piece of flesh from those very bad people didn't work out so well for you.

And FWIW, my experience happened AFTER the Winnebago sale.

Good luck on your cabin - I guess you won't be around here much longer - maybe there are some "cabin in the woods" forums you can join to bash cabin builders...


Experience without good judgment is worthless; good judgment without experience is still good judgment!

2018 RAM 3500 Big Horn CTD
2018 Grand Design Reflection 303RLS

GDS-3950BH

DC

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Posted: 11/10/20 11:14am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

2012Coleman wrote:

GDS-3950BH wrote:

2012Coleman wrote:

Stclairm wrote:


Are there some brands under $30k that any of you recommend who stand behind their product and don't make the consumer regret their purchase? We're ready to pull the trigger on a larger TT, then sell ours, but man, this is disheartening. I will say my local mobile RV repair guy likes Forest River, so I guess he has no problem fixing them and getting paid properly.
Yes - Grand Design. I've had personal experience with talking at length with a manager on their customer support team. I emailed them about a problem with my awning. I didn't get a return email, I got a call. The awning was detaching from the side. The warranty was long over. But they fixed it - correctly at no charge to me. My friend had the same issue with his Alpine - just out of warranty. They would not help - sorry, but your warranty period has expired they told him.

GD sent me a recall notice about an electrical issue that could cause a fire. It is very hard for me to take off work to get it to the dealer who doesn't do intake on the weekend. They authorized a mobile mechanic to do the work at my storage location.

Others will chime in and throw shade on them, but myself and a lot of others will tell you different. Research the brand on both of their forums - PM me if you want the links or just Google.

I googled Grand Design dealers in NC and found a few close to you - Bill Plemmons RV World in Winston-Salem and Raleigh. Check them out. Go and tour a few units.

I can't talk about price as it is different depending on where your located and current market. I will say that I negotiated a substantial percentage off the MSRP and got a front bedroom AC installed as part of the deal. Also - you are in a good position to negotiate. You have multiple dealers in the area for the brand, you already have a RV you can use - so you want a new one, but you don't NEED a new one. This is to your advantage. Winter is here and that's also to your advantage. So if you don't get what you want, you can just get up and leave - leaving them with your phone number. Also, don't trade in before attempting to sell on your own - it will most likely sell if you present it properly.

And yes - they put their RV's together the same as other companies and yes, they may have issues. But beating their customer service is a hard thing to do. I'm very happy with it and fully enjoy using it.

Good luck.


Well good for you. I've had personal experience also talking with Grand Designs support team more times than I care to remember.

First on a 2014 Reflection purchased 2013 which was decent as 5ers go but not without issues, some sort of major such as new axles 3 times and two trips back to the factory. Grand Designs support was spectacular.

That led to the 2020 Solitude. What a piece of garbage it turned out to be. Grand Designs spectacular support went by the wayside with the acquisition by Winnebago. The 2020 was dumped after a little longer than a year of ownership just to get away from it and them. It had frame issues that I doubt could ever be corrected other than band aid fixes.

They turned into "just another name on a box of junk".

The first thing Winnebago did was pull the rug out from under what was considered the go to Grand Design forum, which is still independently operated but renamed to mygrandrv. GD had participated in that forum for years with lots of GD personel posting. Then they started two corporate controlled ones, GDRV4life and gdrvowners, so they could moderate the posts with mods they appointed. And believe me post in a negative light towards their product and posts are edited or deleted.

I used to drink the Kool aid but abstain now days. Plenty of buyers though purchased in the last 3 or 4 years still drink that juice, but Grand Design in 2020 is not the Grand Design it they were before Winnebago, by a longshot.

In any case I am done, and after owning over half a dozen over the years I'll never own another. Were almost done building a nice cabin on a large enough wooded parcel where we will never see another person or so much as hear their noise. You all can have them and I would argue that 99.9% are a crapshoot and a waste of money.
LOL - I knew that you would reply to my post.

Your comments regarding the forums are nothing but conspiracy theories. I also stated originally that you would come along and talk about "drinking the Koolaid" - I'm sorry I edited that out before posting.

Most likely your issues are due to your approach - as the old saying goes, You can catch more Bees with Honey than with Vinegar. Taking the standard RV.net advice to extract your piece of flesh from those very bad people didn't work out so well for you.

And FWIW, my experience happened AFTER the Winnebago sale.

Good luck on your cabin - I guess you won't be around here much longer - maybe there are some "cabin in the woods" forums you can join to bash cabin builders...


LOL.....you're an A$$hole.

QCMan

Grand Strand

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Posted: 11/18/20 01:03pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The year is 2015 and we were in a campground in the Keys with our 2015 FR Mini Lite. I was turning off the water before we left for the day and overheard the folks in the Airstream talking about how poor and stupid we must be to have to buy such an awful unit. Didn't bother me one bit but when we got back, I kept hearing someone call for help. Could not see anybody in distress and then I saw a hand sticking out the bottom of one of the windows of the Airstream with a sign saying "help" so I went over thinking someone was in danger. No, there was no danger but the poor stupid FR owner did bail out the folks in the wonderful Airstream as they could not open the door from inside. Seems it was in the shop multiple times for the same reason and nobody could find the problem so they just kept traveling in it hoping there was always someone around to let them out. Gotta love those high end perfect units!


2020 Keystone Cougar 22RBS, Ram 1500, two Jacks and plenty of time to roam!

snowedin

Poverty Flats, MT

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Posted: 11/20/20 08:24am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Have to shed light on the doom and gloom as it has been my experience that these campers are pretty well designed and made. Have had 4 travel trailers over a period beginning in the late 1970's and really have not had any issues worth mentioning with any of them. I think the worst issue was the PVC plumbing on the shower drain came loose causing a water leak and this was discovered near Anchorage after the long drive up the Alaska Hwy and was an easy fix thanks to a well supplied RV dealership in Anchorage. Other than that I remember making some modifications but nothing in the line of repairs. My last three travel trailers were KZ CL180, Keystone Passport, and Lance 1985, the first two of which made the long journey to Alaska and back so were well tested. The shackle bushings wore out on the trailers with the spring & shackle suspension but that is just normal maintenance.

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