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Old 04-17-2008, 04:23 PM   #15
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Personally, if you like the motorhome, go ahead and buy it. They are nice rigs. There may be some body parts that might pose a problem if you needed to replace, but I wouldn't let that stop me. I had purchased motorhomes in the past that the manufacturer was no longer in business. I figured I could work through any issues. It is a risk, but probably not a big one. My $0.02.
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Old 04-17-2008, 09:37 PM   #16
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The Vansco Multiplex Module VMM2820 Hardware User Guide describes how a new module programs itself. I hope a new module knows that it needs programming and that the single working module constitutes the majority as referenced in the excerpt below.

4.7 Plug and Play Automatic Module Programming

The VMM has a very powerful Plug and Play feature, which allows replacing a single module in a vehicle system with a VMM that contains a different vehicle configuration or no vehicle configuration at all. There is no need for reprogramming.

Upon every system power up each VMM communicates its firmware and ladder logic revision on the CAN. If one module mismatches the majority, that one module automatically downloads the firmware and ladder logic from another VMM in the system. Once this process is complete, all modules go online and continue to operate as though no module was changed.

This feature is particularly useful for module changes in the field in the unlikely event that a module in a system fails to operate properly.

John
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Old 04-18-2008, 02:11 AM   #17
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Mike,

The body parts are something I hadn't thought of (silly me). Somehow I don't think of accidental damage as much as I think of the 'normal' problems, which I can probably get around. Aside from the front and rear caps, I could probably get the job done with what I have in the shop/garage. It'd have to be a pretty bad wreck to put ours permanently out of commission or on the "Parts available" list.

I know nothing of these beasts other than mine but the multiplexing issue should be like anything/everything else we've seen on our forum. There's a lot of really good help here and even it probably was not a proprietary technology of WRV's origin.

Your hint about a person launching a service business is a good point. I just don't think there is a lot of documentation that escaped the WRC security net. But, as a side business, it could have potential. We all have to eat, yes?
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Old 04-18-2008, 06:14 AM   #18
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John,

We had a VMM module fail a few months ago. When a new module is installed, there is an easy procedure that you follow that causes that new module to program itself from the system. I don't remember the procedure, but do have the notes on how to do it saved with my VMM information in our coach.
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Old 04-18-2008, 07:48 AM   #19
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This is my first time posting on the forum. I have used it solely to monitor different issues that owners have so that I can be more informed as a service manager for a WRV dealer. I have always been amazed at the vast range of abilities of the individual owners whether it be with Alpines or any other brand or type of RV. There are a lot of DIY's out there that seem to be as inventive as the most experienced service technician and there are alot of people who need to seek service from others. My opinion on this topic is this: A vast majority of warranty complaints are about the most minor, many times cosmetic issues that owners bring to the dealer or service center because they have the blanket of protection provided by the initial warranty process. These are typically not items that a customer is not able to figure out or repair on their own. There is a vast difference in what a customer/owner will have on their list for repairs when covered by a factory warranty that would not be significant enough of an issue if it were a "customer pay" situation. The major problems that you should be most concerned with are normally things that would be covered by the individual manufacturer warranty of that specific part or appliance. Many first time buyers are oblivious to the fact that there will be problems during the first year. Too many relate it to a car buying experience and are upset that they have problems before their first 100,000 miles. You've overcome that hurdle already by either being a previous RV owner or by your mere participation in this forum. I don't know the percentages, but many owners opt to purchase the extended service contract for peace of mind, over and above the factory warranty. I'm sure the price of the service contract is going to be dwarfed by the amount you will be saving by purchasing an Alpine at this time.
As a service professional, being familiar with the normal slough of warranty complaints from new buyers, I would be capitalizing on the discount, knowing I could either live with a few imperfections,deal with them myself, or be far enough ahead of the game having bought the Alpine right to pay for the additional repairs. And I would still have the confidence of knowing that a vast majority of the warranty issues could be addressed thru seperate manufacturers. Any service facility should be able to make the necessary warranty repairs or coordinate them on your behalf if they are not equipped to do so. It couldn't be a better "buyer's market" for someone interested in an Alpine in my opinion. Another opinion I have is that these leftover Alpines are not going to sit around on dealer lots like many think. I think there are plenty of loyal Alpine owners out there that want nothing more than to upgrade and this may be their last chance to do so. Many have held off waiting to see how WRV was going to emerge from the transition. Sometimes it isn't so much the anticipation of failure as much as it is the uncertainty of the situation. The situation now is unfortunately fairly certain and now we all know what cards we have been dealt and it's up to all of us to play the hand or fold. As a potential Alpine buyer, as far as a dealer is concerned, you are holding pocket aces. If I were in the market for an Alpine, I'd have a hard time laying them down.
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Old 04-18-2008, 01:54 PM   #20
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Jim-
You are the most literate, and eloquent service manager in the universe. Mike
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Old 04-18-2008, 04:02 PM   #21
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Jim, I could probably say something in addition to what Mike has said but it would be pointless.
thank you for your incredible understanding and the absolute monumentous position you take to put yourself forward to us.
Thank you.
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Old 04-19-2008, 06:19 AM   #22
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I'd like to inject a little reality into the parts availability problem. I've personally been through this with my Alpine. Alpine is a custom coach designed with standard and sometimes unique parts. I had my parking brake actuator and switch go out. The actuator was discontinued by the OEM supplier. WRV had some rebuilt ones so I got one of theirs. The switch was obsolete and I purchased another brand and installed it myself with a little re-engineering. It is working fine. Bottom line if WRV did not have the actuator I would have no parking brakes today. The OEM supplier refused to rebuild mine. Parts will be a problem. Don't fool yourselves. Yes anything can be re-engineered, but if a repair shop is doing it get out your checkbook, you'll need it.
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Old 04-20-2008, 11:57 PM   #23
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I think one of the big unanswered questions is what will happen to the manufacturing tools, fixtures, dies and parts if WRV doesn't re-open or get picked up by another company.

As already stated by other members the coaches components / systems can still be repaired or replaced by their individual manufacturers, the coaches fiberglass body panels, front cap, rear cap, roof and sides are another story. Without the tooling and fixtures it would be prohibitively expensive to make those parts.
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Old 04-21-2008, 04:05 AM   #24
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Years ago I had understood that when a manufacturer goes bankrupt there is a legal obligation that the company is obligated to find another company to continue to supply parts for an additional 10 years.
Any truth to that and does it exist at all?

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Old 04-21-2008, 04:40 AM   #25
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Ted,
As I understand the ruling(s), this applies to only those companies continuing in the business. Also, it is 7 years, as governed by the Federal "Statute of limitations".

Example:
An OEM auto manufacturer continually operating must, for a period of 7 years, also maintain their ability to supply repair parts for any production vehicle carried in it's line-up. However, there is no obligation that they continue the manufacture those parts, allowing them to purchase the parts from an outside party (farm-out).
In the case of Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, all bets are off because the company declared "Bankrupt" by the Federal Bankruptcy Court is insolvent, liquidated to reimburse "Post-petition" creditors and it's liabilities discontinued.

Consequently, it would appear that a company not officially "Going out of business" or having the Federal Court adjudicate "Bankruptcy" has an obligation to provide parts availability.

However, all legalities (as I understand them) aside, Good luck with that!

The preceding opinions are RMMPE's and RMMPE's alone. They are not endorsed by the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Defense, rubber duckies anywhere, Snopes, Snopeydog, Mustang Survival, Stearns Safety Gear, ACI, Comcast.net, AOL, Yahoo, Google, Microsoft, Mozilla, Godzilla, Mothra, or any other entity that may be connected/disconnected to/from this post in the wildest legal or illegal sense.
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Old 04-21-2008, 09:11 AM   #26
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As a practical matter, you can remove the front & rear caps from the mega-worry list. Any fiberglass shop can fabricate such a thing from scratch (might be costly for the insurance, and take some "energy" to organize). However, under most damage scenarios, repair to the fiberglass parts has been done to complete satisfaction of the owners.

There is, of course, that occasional boob who just has to detonate a tactical nuke right next to his front cap, and will need a whole new one, plus fresh shorts.
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Old 04-21-2008, 05:53 PM   #27
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As some may recall, Fortravel had a "fireside" sale of all their inventory then ceased operations a couple years ago. They closed their doors for a couple months (don't remember the exact amount of time) and the entire Fortravel group was really worried. Matter of fact, Motor Homes of Texas sprang up as a result...some of the Fortravel folks got together and started the new company. Up until that time Fortravel had a far superior customer satisfaction rating. To make a long story short, they were bought out and are doing fairly well today. We can all hope for the same results.
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Old 05-07-2008, 06:12 AM   #28
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Well we did purchase an 07 Apex, and pick it up on Saturday, and the great savings part was just the ticket, we saved a lot of $$$$. 90% of the parts if not more are someone else's manfacurer. We got an 8 year extended warranty to offset any issues we might experience. Cabinet hardware, little plastic things will break, and home depot will have replacements most likely for those. If I cannot fix it, then that is what the warranty is for. I am looking forward to our new coach as we embark on a new facet to our RV'ing experience. Happy MHoming to all.
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