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Open Roads Forum  >  Travel Trailers  >  General Q&A

 > Best Quality Travel Trailers

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Kampfirekid

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Posted: 08/03/21 11:21am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Is there such a thing? Is the RV industry capable of delivering such a product with the same construction practices, materials, and appliances?
If the answer is “No”, is it reasonable to find what one considers the best for their needs, and one that has the construction and details they find most desirable, and have it air tested and then the roof coated with a hard shell for a good starting basis, and then just maintain the remaining trailer caulking as needed?
I’m not new to travel trailers. I walk the roof bi-weekly, to once a month, depending on use, weather, etc. I have no concerns with my required maintenance, but it seems the new standards are just garbage. I’m not so sure if I should expect more out of a Lance or Arctic Fox. The components, construction, and appliances are the same. I’m mot hearing from many that 2 and 3 year warranties mean much as manufacturers try to pass the buck. Just curious what others consider the hierarchy in selecting a new RV, and what they expect as normal for maintenance and upkeep.


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Lwiddis

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Posted: 08/03/21 11:43am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

When the public stops buying poorly assembled RVs quality will improve.


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TurnThePage

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Posted: 08/03/21 12:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I'm sincerely hoping the RV industry slows down a bit and maybe a little quality gets injected back in. Yeah I know, fat chance.

I really like the fiberglass shells like Oliver and Bigfoot, but the boss wants more room. When I buy my next one it will likely be a Lance or Outdoors RV, or maybe a Grand Design. Which ever it is, it will be independently inspected and as you noted, I will probably also get the roof sealed in some fashion (after I've added a bunch of solar, etc.).

I think most people, myself included, don't have a lot choice. I expect to finish out my life financially secure, but I'll never be anything resembling wealthy. And that's what it will take to get the golden goose RV.


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Old Days

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Posted: 08/03/21 12:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Quality is based on what you can afford.

n0arp

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Posted: 08/03/21 12:36pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Arctic Fox eeems to be a step up from Lance, which is a step up from a lot of your bigger producers. At least in my experience owning two Keystones, a Crossroads, an Arctic Fox, and working on trailers for several friends, and some pretty extensive shopping around.

Within Keystone, you definitely get what you pay for, and I'm sure that's the case across all brands as you move up the tiers. Our '15 Alpine is far better constructed than our '14 Hideout was, even though they're the same company. Our '16 Arctic Fox is better constructed than our Alpine.

I don't think Arctic Fox is all that great, but they're better than a lot of the other ones out there.

If money/time/manpower weren't issues, I'd build all custom. Or have Spacecraft or New Horizons build for me.

* This post was edited 08/03/21 12:49pm by n0arp *


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wanderingaimlessly

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Posted: 08/03/21 01:56pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The problem is multi faceted
Sizes and features that buyers are demanding, versus not only quality and cost, but also weight.
If you want ease of towing, you want a light trailer, but light means less robust construction if you are to maintain a low price point.
You could build a very solid light trailer, with a carbon composite and kevlar based shell over a titanium frame and get both light and solid, but at an astronomical price, or you can get a stick and tin shell on a slightly too light steel(?) frame with foam core laminated interior floors and have a cheap, light, trailer. And if you put a few glitzy items in with LED lights as accents, some schmuck will buy it.
And there are a lot more schmucks out there with shallow pockets than there are discerning people with deep pockets.
So,, they tend to build the most for what they percieve as "the masses"

theoldwizard1

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Posted: 08/03/21 02:54pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Lwiddis wrote:

When the public stops buying poorly assembled RVs quality will improve.

Sad but true !

theoldwizard1

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Posted: 08/03/21 03:02pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

wanderingaimlessly wrote:

The problem is multi faceted
Sizes and features that buyers are demanding, versus not only quality and cost, but also weight.
If you want ease of towing, you want a light trailer, but light means less robust construction if you are to maintain a low price point.

True ! But I believe that on a $20,000 TT, an extra $2,000 can buy a lot of improvements. Like a better roofing system. Better wall construction and subflooring (several manufacturers tried honeycomb and fiberglass floors; they failed because they did not add addition structural bracing underneath).

Would you spend an extra $5,000 for a true bumper-to-bumper 5 year warranty including all of the appliances ?

Desert Captain

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Posted: 08/03/21 03:29pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The OP noted:

" I’m not so sure if I should expect more out of a Lance or Arctic Fox. The components, construction, and appliances are the same."

I have to disagree. Arctic Fox and Lance are head and shoulders above the vast majority of other brands in terms of quality construction, features and equipment {slides, appliances etc.}. My best friend just bought a top of the line Lance 1685 {he opted for 24 of the 27 available options} and that trailer is nothing short of amazing, you really do get what you pay for.

Another post indicated that spending an additional 10 percent will get you a lot more trailer and again I seriously disagree. An extra $2K on a $20K trailer {entry level at best} won't even be noticeable. If you want a quality build expect to pay for it especially in this market.

As far as paying $5K for a 5 year bumper to bumper warranty I wouldn't. You would be locked in to having all service done on their timeframe/locations, hardly a viable option if you travel. I would invest that $5K into a financial product that would give me reasonable access and some sort of a return. In doing so you get to choose by who, when and where your rig will be worked on, a particularly advantageous circumstance when out on the road.

A well built/quality RV given the proper maintenance should not require much in the way of expensive repairs. Better yet buy a lightly used, high quality product, ideally about 2 - 4 years old and you will get the best of both worlds. Any major problems along with the usual minor bugs will have been dealt with and the huge hit on depreciation by in large disappears in the third or 4th year.

As always... Opinions and YMMV

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amxpress

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Posted: 08/03/21 07:05pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I’ve been RVing since high school. Now that I’m all grown up, and retired, I purchased my last trailer. This will be #5. I purchased an Airstream Bambi. It’s an entry level trailer, but the build & construction quality is far superior to any of my previous RV’s. It is also the best towing trailer I’ve ever owned. I was considering a Lance, but the boss, I mean DW liked the Airstream better. It’s not for everyone, but we’re very happy with it.


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