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Old 04-07-2015, 08:03 PM   #1
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Phaeton construction

DW and I are thinking of switching to a Phaeton. But something we cannot find information on is the bones. What is under the skin? What are its bones? And what are the components made of? I've read on this forum of wet bays made of plywood. Is Tiffin stuck in the dark ages of construction technology, stilll using wood framing for the basic structure? If anyone can point me to good information concerning the construction of the Phaeton models I would really appreciate it. They have a few floor plans we really like. We currently have a Winnebago that has a steel cage around the cockpit and an aluminum framework in the walls of the rest of the coach. The wet bay is a heavy cast polyethylene molded box, not plywood.

Trying to avoid a trip to the dealer so I appreciate any information you can provide.
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Old 04-07-2015, 11:10 PM   #2
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I surly would not go to a dealer and ask questions! they would not know! I would visit the factories if I was that concern! Ask question, take photos, and make a decision! Sales people will tell you anything to get a sale! I am sure their are good ones out there, but it is hard to find them! Good luck!
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Old 04-07-2015, 11:51 PM   #3
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There are numerous folks who followed their coach down the production line and documented the builds. Try to get that up close at Forest City.

They have posted on this forum, but the best source for all things Tiffin is the Tiffin RV Network.

If you have never been to Red Bay, you should go. A tour of the TMH factory will be unlike any that you have experienced before. EVERY coach that they build will be available for your inspection, during and after production. In most areas of the plant, your questions will be answered by the workers who are building them.


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Old 04-08-2015, 05:05 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChasA View Post
DW and I are thinking of switching to a Phaeton. But something we cannot find information on is the bones. What is under the skin? What are its bones? And what are the components made of? I've read on this forum of wet bays made of plywood. Is Tiffin stuck in the dark ages of construction technology, stilll using wood framing for the basic structure? If anyone can point me to good information concerning the construction of the Phaeton models I would really appreciate it. They have a few floor plans we really like. We currently have a Winnebago that has a steel cage around the cockpit and an aluminum framework in the walls of the rest of the coach. The wet bay is a heavy cast polyethylene molded box, not plywood.

Trying to avoid a trip to the dealer so I appreciate any information you can provide.
Tiffin motorhomes are built with aluminum-framed, laminated-foam sidewall construction. We posted a blog entry back in 2009 that has photos and a description of the construction methods used by Tiffin. Click HERE to read that blog post.

It is not all that uncommon in the RV industry for the floors of storage bays to be constructed of plywood. It has better rigidity than metal or plastic. Unfortunately, Tiffin didn't anticipate the effects of condensation on the plywood in their wet bays and had a problem with the plywood rotting. Because of this, they switched to a plastic floor some time ago. Note that in the the photo below taken from the blog post has a white plastic floor in the wet bay, which is located right behind the duals.



Should you buy an older Phaeton that has a plywood wet bay floor, Tiffin will repair it at no cost.
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Old 04-08-2015, 05:58 AM   #5
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Paz, thank you for the information.
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Old 04-08-2015, 01:05 PM   #6
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You can also check out this video tour of the Tiffin Factory... doesn't show the wall construction (aluminum frame, vacuum-bonded I believe), but it gives you a pretty good walk through of the assembly process.

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Old 04-08-2015, 08:31 PM   #7
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Quote:
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Should you buy an older Phaeton that has a plywood wet bay floor, Tiffin will repair it at no cost.
This is true to a point. They have limited this to eight years. For coaches over eight years old they will do the wet bay repair but charge $250. Basically this covers the material with the labor waived.
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Old 04-14-2015, 10:55 AM   #8
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Not sure exactly when Tiffin stopped using plywood in the wet bay (2012?) but you can easily check by looking at the wet bay to see if it is moulded.
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Old 04-14-2015, 12:15 PM   #9
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Not sure exactly when Tiffin stopped using plywood in the wet bay (2012?) but you can easily check by looking at the wet bay to see if it is moulded.
FWIW, My coach, 2012 late build (May 2012) Phaeton, has the plastic wet bay, new style DS slide floor and seal, and the "latest" roof material. The roof material was changed at least once, maybe twice, during the 2012 model build. I believe that the latest roof came on the scene in March or April.

I have had no issues with any of the above.
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Old 04-18-2015, 06:14 PM   #10
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The latest roof design started production 2/12/12.
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