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Old 01-23-2012, 01:53 PM   #1
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General Quality Question

At the risk of raising a huge ruckus, I have to ask what brands people look to for quality in a class A motorhome. I have a Serrano (Four Winds / Thor) and I love the layout and relative size, but the quality issues are driving me nuts. Just when I think I'm down to the last thing, something else pops us. This on an 18 month old unit!

Thor has a new Freighliner chassis pusher that seems like a good layout and the right size, but if the quality is no better than I certainly won't trade for it.

If quality was high on your criteria list for your next RV, what companies would you look to?

Niel Powers
2010 Serrano 31V
Colorado Springs

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Old 01-23-2012, 02:18 PM   #2
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As well put together as this Newmar is, there are still quality issues. I've had to address a few and can just scratch my head. They go out of their way for fit and finish but there are some things that are just put together a little on the in adequate side for this quality of a coach. I won't pinpoint the issues but all I'll say is that a little dab of glue here and there could work wonders along with maybe some screws rather then staples.

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Old 01-23-2012, 03:08 PM   #3
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RV Quality

IMHO, here are the RVs i think are of the highest quality in the "affordable" range.

  1. Tiffin
  2. Winnebago
  3. Newmar
If you are considering USED as well as new, here is another list.

  1. National RV
  2. Alpine by Western RV
  3. Monaco
I have been hearing that Fleetwood has really stepped up their quality control since 2006, but I have no direct knowledge. Thor Industries is supposedly fairly good. Not much feedback on the new Monaco line. Monaco is now manufactured by Navistar which has a good reputation for quality.

If your pockets are very deep, Travel Supreme (now a Jayco prod.), Prevost conversions and Newell.

Tiffin has the best customer satisfaction rating on the RV forums. Still family owned and operated and really take care of their buyers.

These selections are worth every penny you paid for them!

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Old 01-23-2012, 04:06 PM   #4
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We just traded our 2003 fleetwood excursion, never any major issues for a new 2012 fleetwood providence. So far no major problems. Small issues, bay door alignment, moulding fastenings, but the layout room and systems for the price point are overwhelming! We feel that past experience re: Fleetwood and to this date Fleetwood rates very high as to affordable and quality points. There may be negative points as to any coach manf. Money does not solve minor issues all coaches take time to de-bug!
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Old 01-23-2012, 04:10 PM   #5
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Always an interesting question... and one with no clear answer.

IMHO... one has to get past the natural feeling that, "hey, I paid a fortune for this machine and it shouldn't have all these little problems!" While there might be a lot of truth to the statement... it's just not how things are.

On my shake down cruise with my new Itasca 40DP I got great advice (and a martini) from an experienced neighbor. He told me to not get upset about all the little things that I found wrong, that it would take a year to get all of the bugs worked out. While it turned out to be great advice, things still continue to go wrong and need attention as long as the coach is being used.

It does seem that Tiffin has the best customer satisfaction... although I don't believe it's because fewer things go wrong but because of how they take care of their customers.

It's impossible to compare "quality" without qualifying price points. If one spends a million bucks on a coach there're probably going to perceive higher quality that those of us who "only" spend a quarter of that. I spent a winter in a very nice Class A resort and got to know several of our neighbors who had million dollar rigs. My assessment is that they too have a lot of things which require fixing... but Marathon and Newell will send a tech to your site to fix them while you're playing golf.

Good luck.

Rick, Nancy, Peanut & Lola our Westie Dogs & Bailey the Sheltie.

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Old 01-23-2012, 06:24 PM   #6
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Niel, we have also had very good luck with our 2012 Fleetwood Bounder. We have owned it since November and have logged 4,000 miles with only 1 dealer trip for our punch list of minor problems. That said, I believe the purchase of a new coach is the luck of the draw. There seem to be industry-wide quality issues, no matter which brand you choose.
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Old 01-23-2012, 06:44 PM   #7
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From reading here and other forums it seems like Tiffin quality has slipped (do a search on "roof cracks" or cap cracks).

When we belonged to one club my parents helped found there were 12 MH's, of these six were Newmars and everyone was very pleased. One of the SOB's was a Prevost.

My parents had an Airstream TT and a Foretravel MH, so when we went looking I was looking for quality and we found it in the Newmars. We did have some SOB's in between, some of them required repairs every time out. I can't remember how many match sticks I used repairing stripped screws on the '98 Santara 35'er. The cabinet frames seem to be pressed cardboard!

Anyway, do some looking and find what you like, you might even want to look at used Foretravels too.
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Old 01-23-2012, 06:51 PM   #8
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We have been RVing now since 1984. The Thor products have never impressed us. I do hope you get all of the issues resolved so that you can enjoy the RV.

Amateur Radio Operator (KE5DFR)|Full-Time! - 2012 6.7L Ford Crew Cab Dually -2013 HitchHiker Champagne 38RLRSB - Travel with one Standard Schnauzer and one small Timneh African Gray Parrot
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Old 01-23-2012, 07:36 PM   #9
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As I said b4, we own a 2008 NEWMAR Bay Star 2901 since new and NEVER had a problem. Did not have to go to a Dealer for some work. Quality is just as good......... PERFECT. Miles on the clock are just under 20,000.
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Old 01-24-2012, 05:39 AM   #10
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My vote is for Winnebago. When you've had a serious accident in one- you find out how well they're put together.
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Old 01-24-2012, 06:39 AM   #11
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Entegra (used to be Travel Supreme)

2 year bumper to bumper transferrable warranty. Can any other companies top that?
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Old 01-24-2012, 06:45 AM   #12
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Kind of depends on what you definition of quality is, too. Is it materials or construction technique or engineering? I have decided that RV's are places to put time and money. This was true on my 1990 TT and is true on my Dynasty. I enjoy fixing things so it is not a burden. I find vinyl cheesy, there are yards of it in the Monaco, the cabinetry is better than my house, go figure. RV's definitely take more maintenance, no matter the make.
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Old 01-24-2012, 09:57 AM   #13
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At the top of our pick list would be Tiffin, American Coach, and Entegra. I feel Entegra has the best foundation, quality, and support. But, buying a coach involves balancing your floor plan decision with features and amenities as well as quality and factory support. I'd be happy with any of the three. If you want to see how Entegras are built check out RVcruzer.com - Entegra Coach Construction Overview
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Old 01-24-2012, 12:37 PM   #14
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I like my monaco a lot.

There are certainly brands that are built to a lower price point. Recognize them, and if. U can afford better, do so.

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