RV.Net Open Roads Forum: Travel Trailers: Help me with current best manufacturers

RV Blog

  |  

RV Sales

  |  

Campgrounds

  |  

RV Parks

  |  

RV Club

  |  

RV Buyers Guide

  |  

Roadside Assistance

  |  

Extended Service Plan

  |  

RV Travel Assistance

  |  

RV Credit Card

  |  

RV Loans

Open Roads Forum Already a member? Login here.   If not, Register Today!  |  Help

Newest  |  Active  |  Popular  |  RVing FAQ Forum Rules  |  Forum Posting Help and Support  |  Contact  

Search:   Advanced Search

Search only in Travel Trailers

Open Roads Forum  >  Travel Trailers  >  General Q&A

 > Help me with current best manufacturers

Reply to Topic  |  Subscribe  |  Print Topic  |  Post New Topic  | 
Page of 4  
Prev  |  Next
Sponsored By:
flylipsdad

Montrose,Mi.

New Member

Joined: 03/25/2008

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 05/10/23 10:09am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Just Bought a New 20 ft Grand Design. Don't do it! The enginering isn't the Best is an Understatement. and out the Door Quality??? Rust? Door that won't open? Etc...

aftermath

Washington State

Senior Member

Joined: 09/18/2005

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 05/10/23 02:51pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Nice post JBarca, you summed up the important issues. Everyone is different so it is hard to come up with a system for everyone. I don't like changing trailers so will purchase something with the long haul in mind. We had our Starcraft tent trailer for 17 years before selling it and now, after a good 10 years my daughter purchased it back and is still using it. We had a hybrid for about 8 years and it was holding up nicely before we retired and purchased a used Airstream. I am not pushing Airstream but I can get the same price I paid for it back in 2009, the market remains pretty strong. I do take care of my stuff and that is a big issue if you want to protect your investment.
My Airstream does not leak any more, and I would bet, far less than a regular box trailer. It is very short on storage space outside, has enough inside and is not a huge palatial trailer like so many Americans want. No slideouts either AND the price is insanely ridiculous. I got mine used back when the price of used ones were bad but not that bad.
If you want toots and whistles, like outside kitchens, fireplaces and an island in your kitchen I have no suggestions. My cousin has an Arctic Fox and I am impressed with how sturdy it is . It is also quite heavy. I have also heard that Nash makes a good trailer.
I would avoid anything that has the word "lite" in it. Again, I want something to last even after traveling many miles on the highway. How do you suppose they make trailers "lite"?
In the end, it will be important to get something you want. If you want a fireplace then you need to get one of those. Keep your eyes on how sturdy the trailer is built. Look at the GVW ratings between some of your choices. Simply walking across the floor in some trailers will say a lot. Best wishes in your hunt.


2017 Toyota Tundra, Double Cab, 5.7L V8
2006 Airstream 25 FB SE
Equalizer Hitch

CWilson

Beach

New Member

Joined: 03/26/2023

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 05/11/23 02:50am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

flylipsdad wrote:

Just Bought a New 20 ft Grand Design. Don't do it! The enginering isn't the Best is an Understatement. and out the Door Quality??? Rust? Door that won't open? Etc...


Huntindog wrote:

Focus on what is important.
The foundation IE, The frame axles and tanks. GD tends to have more robust items, an even has axle/tire/brake upgrades avaiable on some models. I have read good things about Northwoods and outdoors as well.



Interesting. I am not sure what Grand Design has that would qualify as "more robust items". From what I have seen and researched they use just as much cheap junk obtained from Lippert as Forest River and Thor, perhaps more, from the frame on up. A couple oif years ago they had Lippert running gear failing in a big way. A close friend bought a Solitude 5th wheel which had so many recurring issues he dumped it after a year and a half.

Grand Design was started by 3 guys who spent their life in the RV Industry, mostly with Thor/Keystone/Dutchmen RV, who were/are known for the highest level of quality LOL. They blew a lot of smoke, built up a cult like following the first few years, then cashed out and sold out to Winnebago. One stayed at Winnebago as Pres of the Grand Design Division, the other two now have started another company to fleece more people with slapped together junk. All of the original hoopla over higher quality and better customer service went out the window over time. Grand Design is no better than any other of the mass produced brands.

TurnThePage

North ID

Senior Member

Joined: 10/08/2003

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 05/11/23 11:25am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have to agree. The Lippert frame on my new GD, has items literally welded on crooked, like the tongue! It's still usable and should be strong enough to last.

Where GD shines is the clever designs and layouts they've come up with over the years. Their customer service still appears to be pretty good too.


2015 Ram 1500
2004 Pioneer 18T6

Huntindog

Phoenix AZ

Senior Member

Joined: 04/08/2002

View Profile



Posted: 05/11/23 03:07pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

CWilson wrote:

flylipsdad wrote:

Just Bought a New 20 ft Grand Design. Don't do it! The enginering isn't the Best is an Understatement. and out the Door Quality??? Rust? Door that won't open? Etc...


Huntindog wrote:

Focus on what is important.
The foundation IE, The frame axles and tanks. GD tends to have more robust items, an even has axle/tire/brake upgrades avaiable on some models. I have read good things about Northwoods and outdoors as well.



Interesting. I am not sure what Grand Design has that would qualify as "more robust items". From what I have seen and researched they use just as much cheap junk obtained from Lippert as Forest River and Thor, perhaps more, from the frame on up. A couple oif years ago they had Lippert running gear failing in a big way. A close friend bought a Solitude 5th wheel which had so many recurring issues he dumped it after a year and a half.

Grand Design was started by 3 guys who spent their life in the RV Industry, mostly with Thor/Keystone/Dutchmen RV, who were/are known for the highest level of quality LOL. They blew a lot of smoke, built up a cult like following the first few years, then cashed out and sold out to Winnebago. One stayed at Winnebago as Pres of the Grand Design Division, the other two now have started another company to fleece more people with slapped together junk. All of the original hoopla over higher quality and better customer service went out the window over time. Grand Design is no better than any other of the mass produced brands.
My Momentum has optional 8K axles and disc brakes, 17.5 LRH tires, a 12" tall frame, and is the first RV I have owned where the tanks actually hold what they are spec'ed at. This is my 4th RV over 30 years, and the best one yet.


Huntindog
100% boondocking
2021 Grand Design Momentum 398M
2 bathrooms, no waiting
104 gal grey, 104 black,158 fresh
FullBodyPaint, 3,8Kaxles, DiscBrakes
17.5LRH commercial tires
1860watts solar,800 AH Battleborn batterys
2020 Silverado HighCountryC CD/A 4X4 DRW



CWilson

Beach

New Member

Joined: 03/26/2023

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 05/13/23 06:06am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Huntindog wrote:

My Momentum has optional 8K axles and disc brakes, 17.5 LRH tires, a 12" tall frame, and is the first RV I have owned where the tanks actually hold what they are spec'ed at. This is my 4th RV over 30 years, and the best one yet.


Thats great, but I am not sure what the height of the frame has to do with quality. One would expect the frame rails to be larger on a bigger rig. A 12" high frame can be fabricated just as shoddy as a 6" high frame and when it comes to LCI that speaks for itself. I've yet to see a quality weld on an LCI frame and its a known fact they use cheap surplus steel whenever they can and the smallest/lightest they can get away with. You paid for the optional axles and disc brakes, what would you have gotten from Grand Design as "stock"? Are you saying that the stock axles and brakes are low quality? I looked at a 2021 Grand Design TT and it had OEM installed Lionshead Castlerock China Bombs.

JBarca

Radnor, Ohio, USA

Senior Member

Joined: 12/16/2004

View Profile





Offline
Posted: 05/13/23 09:24am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

CWilson wrote:

Huntindog wrote:

My Momentum has optional 8K axles and disc brakes, 17.5 LRH tires, a 12" tall frame, and is the first RV I have owned where the tanks actually hold what they are spec'ed at. This is my 4th RV over 30 years, and the best one yet.


Thats great, but I am not sure what the height of the frame has to do with quality. One would expect the frame rails to be larger on a bigger rig. A 12" high frame can be fabricated just as shoddy as a 6" high frame and when it comes to LCI that speaks for itself. I've yet to see a quality weld on an LCI frame and its a known fact they use cheap surplus steel whenever they can and the smallest/lightest they can get away with. You paid for the optional axles and disc brakes, what would you have gotten from Grand Design as "stock"? Are you saying that the stock axles and brakes are low quality? I looked at a 2021 Grand Design TT and it had OEM installed Lionshead Castlerock China Bombs.


I am "not" defending poor craftsmanship. I detest the lack of good quality welds and the lack of pride in a trade that has been mastered long ago. There is more to what Huntingdog was talking about past the craftsmanship issues.

I can speak to the 12" frame comment, and that size does have to do with quality. I have seen the recent years' downsizing of the main frame rails across many brands. I'm not sure what his camper is rated at, but a triple axle camper can now be on a 10" frame. Does it work? Yes, will it last? Maybe not, pending the use of the camper.

As a point of reference, I can speak to the 10,000# GVWR-rated campers, which used to have 10" main frame rails, but now they are nearly non-existent and have been replaced with 8" frame rails other than a few select brands. I will never buy a new camper in the 10,000# GVWR range on 8" frame rails. I have seen what can happen over time with them if you plan to keep and use the camper for a good long time. I dealt with the 10" rails bending behind the rear hangers from a mega pothole-laced highway. And this was on HSLC 55ksi yield steel frame rails. HSLC = High Strength Low Carbon steel has a higher yield and tensile strength and is a way to gain strength without adding weight. The standard 36 ksi steel is the same shape, just not as strong. And downsizing to 8" from 10" is the wrong direction in my view for a camper to last a long time, even if it is on HSLC steel.

These I shape thin main frame rails came out of the manufactured homes industry. They are called MH beams in the industry. The MH beams are unlike a standard true I beam used in buildings and bridges. The MH industry uses them to transport the home to the job site, and that is about it. The RV industry was looking for a lightweight beam that, on paper, would work; they found the MH beams and have been dealing with frame cracks and how to try and stop them ever since. Hanger area web cracks, rear overhang past the rear hanger on longer campers, A-frame failures, and the list goes on. There are ways how to make that shape work, but it costs more $$ in materials and more time to reinforce the frame. Why not add it to all campers using that I shape frame?

Further downsizing on 10,000# campers, axle ratings, and springs is now well established. A 10,000# camper used to come with qty, 2, 5,200# axles and springs on 12" brakes. Many brands have adopted these new 4,400# axles, springs, and 10" brakes. Why?

Thin metal roof rafters and thin composite glued-together floors, in my view, are not of lasting quality either. The list just keeps going...

Quality, even if the craftsmen ship is done right, is also with what components are selected. An RV buyer dealing with past issues is more educated on what "not" to buy. Some of us want to keep our campers for a long time, I being one of that group. In order for long life and leak-free to happen, you have to start with something built better than most and then constantly be on top of the maintenance. My only suggestion is to educate yourself on what fails on certain brands and what to look out for.

There is always more to the story.

John

* This post was edited 05/13/23 05:20pm by JBarca *


John & Cindy

2005 Ford F350 Super Duty, 4x4; 6.8L V10 with 4.10
CC, SB, Lariat & FX4 package
21,000 GCWR, 11,000 GVWR
Ford Tow Command
1,700# Reese HP hitch & HP Dual Cam
2 1/2" Towbeast Receiver

2004 Sunline Solaris T310SR
(I wish we were camping!)


CWilson

Beach

New Member

Joined: 03/26/2023

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 05/14/23 04:04am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

JBarca wrote:




I can speak to the 12" frame comment, and that size does have to do with quality. I have seen the recent years' downsizing of the main frame rails across many brands. I'm not sure what his camper is rated at, but a triple axle camper can now be on a 10" frame. Does it work? Yes, will it last? Maybe not, pending the use of the camper.


His TH is 20K GVWR and 15K UVW.

If it says LCI on it, something is boogered up somewhere or it's just simply wrong, and they used the absolute cheapest of everything.

Huntindog

Phoenix AZ

Senior Member

Joined: 04/08/2002

View Profile



Posted: 05/14/23 05:53am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

CWilson wrote:

Huntindog wrote:

My Momentum has optional 8K axles and disc brakes, 17.5 LRH tires, a 12" tall frame, and is the first RV I have owned where the tanks actually hold what they are spec'ed at. This is my 4th RV over 30 years, and the best one yet.


Thats great, but I am not sure what the height of the frame has to do with quality. One would expect the frame rails to be larger on a bigger rig. A 12" high frame can be fabricated just as shoddy as a 6" high frame and when it comes to LCI that speaks for itself. I've yet to see a quality weld on an LCI frame and its a known fact they use cheap surplus steel whenever they can and the smallest/lightest they can get away with. You paid for the optional axles and disc brakes, what would you have gotten from Grand Design as "stock"? Are you saying that the stock axles and brakes are low quality? I looked at a 2021 Grand Design TT and it had OEM installed Lionshead Castlerock China Bombs.
GD uses Dexter axles with self adjusting brakes. In the 2021 model year they were 7K axles on the big Momentums with an option for 8K with disc brakes and Cooper 17.5 LRH tires. Triple 7Ks had a GVW of 20K and Triple 8Ks bumped that up to 21K. The pin box is/was the limiting factor. Now they are coming With the 8K axles/disc/LRH tires standard. This puts the GD toyhaulers far ahead of the competition.
If you will notice even the 7K axles in 2021 exceeded the GVW of 20K...A stark contrast to the industry standard of subtracting the hitch weight from the GVW to determine axle size.
A testament to GDs confidence in their frame and running gear is that they state the garage can have the entire CC loaded into the garage! My Momentum 398M has a CC approaching 5K!! I have a trip planned where I will load a Jeep into the garage. That would not be possible within the ratings of most of the competition

I haven't been shopping since I bought my Momentum, but at that time, they stood out from the rest. Only DRV, Luxe, and New Horizons were better in some areas. But none of them had the 18' garage we needed


* This post was edited 05/14/23 06:35am by Huntindog *

Huntindog

Phoenix AZ

Senior Member

Joined: 04/08/2002

View Profile



Posted: 05/14/23 09:43am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

CWilson wrote:

I looked at a 2021 Grand Design TT and it had OEM installed Lionshead Castlerock China Bombs.
If the only thing I did not like about a TT was the tires, I would buy it.
It is literally the easist thing to fix. One could take care of that on the way home from the dealer.


Reply to Topic  |  Subscribe  |  Print Topic  |  Post New Topic  | 
Page of 4  
Prev  |  Next

Open Roads Forum  >  Travel Trailers  >  General Q&A

 > Help me with current best manufacturers
Search:   Advanced Search

Search only in Travel Trailers


New posts No new posts
Closed, new posts Closed, no new posts
Moved, new posts Moved, no new posts

Adjust text size:




© 2023 CWI, Inc. © 2023 Good Sam Enterprises, LLC. All Rights Reserved.