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Old 09-04-2008, 08:40 AM   #1
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THE DAY YOU BUY ONE AND THE DAY YOU SELL ONE!

Over the last fifteen years, we have owned 7 motorhomes from different Companies (Safari, Airstream, Winnebago, Newmar) and have enjoyed extensive travels. We have visited many of the Mfg. plants and have spoken to hundreds of owners all over the Country about their motorhomes. Most owners will tell you that they love the life-style and enjoy it for many of the same reasons whether they full time, part time,and are retired or still working.

However, a common complaint we heard was the utter disgust over the inevitable mechanical breakdowns (major and minor). It is interesting to note that many of us buy motorhomes so we can travel with our pets, sleep in our own beds, eat our own food and cooking, yet because of breakdowns we are forced to spend time in lousy lodging with horrible food because our "home" was being repaired and our trip was interupted. After the breakdown "horror stories" are shared around the campfire, the subject of manufacturer service and support raises the discussion to another heated level and don't get me started about discussions on depreciation!

I know, I know,- preventative maintainence is the key to success you say- but how many of us have the tools, parts and knowledge to repair the many mechanical and electrical systems on today's motorhomes? After reading many of the threads in the various forums, I am absolutely convinced that most problems can not be prevented and happen due to faulty design, engineering and /or quality control.

I will admit that the older I become, I am less flexible and forgiving. Accordingly, when I consider spending another $500,000 or more on a new coach, I expect a much better product than what is currently being produced. There does not appear to be any correlation between the purchase price and reliability. As a matter of fact, a case can easily be made that the high line coaches suffer the most debilatating malfunctions!

For my part, I am no longer willing to support an industry that has brought some of their current problems upon themselves. Frustrating customers because of on-going problems with reliability seems to me a very unacceptable business model. And did I mention depreciation??

For now my coach has been sold (thank you, Lord) and I am on the happy side of the equation once again!

Best wishes to all and..... ARRIVEDERCI....
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Old 09-04-2008, 08:40 AM   #2
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THE DAY YOU BUY ONE AND THE DAY YOU SELL ONE!

Over the last fifteen years, we have owned 7 motorhomes from different Companies (Safari, Airstream, Winnebago, Newmar) and have enjoyed extensive travels. We have visited many of the Mfg. plants and have spoken to hundreds of owners all over the Country about their motorhomes. Most owners will tell you that they love the life-style and enjoy it for many of the same reasons whether they full time, part time,and are retired or still working.

However, a common complaint we heard was the utter disgust over the inevitable mechanical breakdowns (major and minor). It is interesting to note that many of us buy motorhomes so we can travel with our pets, sleep in our own beds, eat our own food and cooking, yet because of breakdowns we are forced to spend time in lousy lodging with horrible food because our "home" was being repaired and our trip was interupted. After the breakdown "horror stories" are shared around the campfire, the subject of manufacturer service and support raises the discussion to another heated level and don't get me started about discussions on depreciation!

I know, I know,- preventative maintainence is the key to success you say- but how many of us have the tools, parts and knowledge to repair the many mechanical and electrical systems on today's motorhomes? After reading many of the threads in the various forums, I am absolutely convinced that most problems can not be prevented and happen due to faulty design, engineering and /or quality control.

I will admit that the older I become, I am less flexible and forgiving. Accordingly, when I consider spending another $500,000 or more on a new coach, I expect a much better product than what is currently being produced. There does not appear to be any correlation between the purchase price and reliability. As a matter of fact, a case can easily be made that the high line coaches suffer the most debilatating malfunctions!

For my part, I am no longer willing to support an industry that has brought some of their current problems upon themselves. Frustrating customers because of on-going problems with reliability seems to me a very unacceptable business model. And did I mention depreciation??

For now my coach has been sold (thank you, Lord) and I am on the happy side of the equation once again!

Best wishes to all and..... ARRIVEDERCI....
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Old 09-04-2008, 09:07 AM   #3
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Wish you the best living without your RV. Your comments make me realize how fortunate and blessed I have been. Been doing this for over 30 yrs and fulltime since 2001 and have never had to spend time without my "home" because of a breakdown. Yes, I have had a few problems but nothing major. I would also think there are a lot of others like me out there or there wouldn't be so many of us on the road.

I think the RV industry is not the only one whose reliability,as you called it, is not what it should be. It seems like that is the way of the world these days.
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Old 09-04-2008, 10:11 AM   #4
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">THE DAY YOU BUY ONE AND THE DAY YOU SELL ONE! </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
No way Dude!That saying is for boats.I have had my share of mishaps but plan on doing this the rest of my life. Life as I know it is always throwing me knuckle balls, but every once in awhile I get that fastball right in the sweet spot over the plate and wham.
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Old 09-04-2008, 10:47 AM   #5
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Taxed.....Just want to say I enjoyed your post and how true it is. My biggest concern down the road is when it comes time to sell my existing coach so that I may buy my retirement coach.
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Old 09-04-2008, 11:21 AM   #6
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Over the last fifteen years, we have owned 7 motorhomes from different Companies </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
Wow!! Sounds like there were more than just two happiest days -- there were 14 happy "buy one" and "sell one" happiest days in those 15 years!!!

If I thought I would have to replace my coach every two years, we would never have bought an RV in the first place. The thought of going through that hassle every other year is just too depressing!!! It talkes that long just to work out the little bugs in an RV!!

We are now into the sixth year of ownership on our coach, and no plans to have any happy "sell this one" or "buy another one" days -- we're too busy having other kinds of happy days!!
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Old 09-04-2008, 02:57 PM   #7
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I guess we all have our approach to MHs. We've only owned one but, after 4 years of use, the day that we bought it is still one of the best days of our lives.

Freedom. I don't know how important that is to others but it is the best thing about our MH to us. We have the freedom to go where we want, live the way we want and be able to enjoy the sights of this great country. We just came back from a 22 day, 4,399 mile trip to NC, PA, CT, NY, Ontario, and MI that we could have only done with a MH. So, tell me how you would carry a 45" model sailboat to race in a regatta in Mystic Seaport, buy a dinette full of outdoor Christmas decorations at Bronner's in Frankenmuth, MI and see Niagara Falls, Keuka Lake, and the Mackinaw Bridge in one time span any other way? More important, we did it while keeping DW on her diabetic diet. I've traveled for business and sworn that I'd never do the same thing (stay in hotels, eat in restaurants) for vacation. OK, we've gone to Hawaii a couple of times and it has been enjoyable but we get so much more enjoyment when we can do it
"our way".

We came home with a list of repairs. Today, I fixed the latch on the driver's door that came loose in the last day of the trip. Tonight, I'll replace a couple of parts in the Winegard crank-up "batwing" antenna. Before we left, I spend the better part of a week, washing and waxing every night and another week replacing all of the coolant hoses on the engine. To me, those kinds of things are a labor of love. I love the fact that, when I do them correctly, we can travel nearly 4,400 miles and have no major issues. There is a commitment to repairs and I know that I'll always be faced with them. There is both a challenge and an adventure to them, however. How do you recover from loosing one of the pins in the tow bar in Mackinaw, heading for Dallas? We did and only delayed our trip a few minutes. I take great satisfaction in finding and fixing the problems that occur and trying to keep us on the road with minimal impact while it is happening. All I can say is, "so far, so good."

It is clear that the RV lifestyle is not for everyone. For those who enjoy it, however, there can be no substitute. The day that we have to give up the RV is the day that my heart breaks...
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Old 09-05-2008, 07:26 AM   #8
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You have high (and unrealistic) expectations grasshopper. Owning a house, boat, car, computer, a pet, hiring contractors and other service people, calling help desks, asking for help in department stores and home improvement centers; all these things are going to fall way short of your expectations, (being an over achieving virgo's virgo, mine too). Although I do not always follow my own advice, I do have some (after all, I do own or perform most of the aforementioned problems). Grasshopper, before your next adventure, you need to lower your expectations to the point they have already been met. In this way, you will not be disappointed next time.
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Old 09-05-2008, 08:47 AM   #9
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Hi Taxed--

I just realized the reason for your RV concerns and failures. You only kept one, on the average, two years, two months.

My goodness, it takes me two years just to figure one out. When your dealing with a home, a restaurant, a hotel room, a day room, and TV's, stereo systems, a sewer system, all on wheels going 60- 70 MPH down the highway--Probably in a rain/snow storm--you kinda can expect some problems or concerns.

We sincerely wish you "Happy, trouble free Sailing" in your new found life style-- whatever that may be
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Old 09-05-2008, 10:12 AM   #10
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I agree that the positives greatly outweigh any problems you may have with motor home ownership.

Since we bought our first motor home in 1988, my three boys have been to 48 states, traveled almost 100,000 miles, and have gained more life experiences than you can imagine. It is great to hear their teachers talk about how much they add to a class discussion. Since they have been so many places, they make a classroom discussion alive and real to the other students. My satisfaction is hearing them say how they one day definitely want to bring their family to a certain spot we visited.

Sure when you put the dollars and cents down it may not be cost effective. But I learned early in life - work hard for your money and then work just as hard at enjoying it.
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Old 09-06-2008, 08:37 AM   #11
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Hey, TaxedtoDeath, I realize that you will probably never see this or other responses, because, now that you've let us know you only buy half million dollar coaches, you're "outtahere." Being that unhappy with the whole scene, probably just as well, for your sake. Not all personalities and temperaments are geared to it. Different strokes, as they say.

However, I can't help but notice that even Becks, who "agreed" with you, is planning on buying another coach. Surely you didn't post negative on a motorhome forum, and expect to find a lot of sympathizers?

SO LONG, SAYONARA, VAYA CON DIOS, ADIEU
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Old 09-06-2008, 10:39 AM   #12
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by blacktie.shooter:
Hey, TaxedtoDeath, I realize that you will probably never see this or other responses </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Hey, Blacktie.shooter,-- wrong, I am still here and I hope that I can appreciate other points of view without expressing an attitude.

If you re-read my post, you will see that most of the manufacturers listed don't even offer to sell $500,000 coaches, so you surely missed my point. I certainly didn't post looking for sympathy, and if I offended you because I didn't express happiness, roses and lollipops,- well, so be it. We didn't stay in the lifestyle for over 15 years, because we didn't like it!
You only have to read the many, many posts on different forums to realize that a lot of owners have been frustrated by breakdowns. I fully understand that these things will happen and only posted to indicate that even though we love the life-style, we are no longer willing and able to contend with the negatives (from our perspective).

Different strokes, as you say........
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Old 09-06-2008, 10:53 AM   #13
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Funny - one of the things I like best about RVing is not having to maintain a house!! The yard, the plants, the roof, the pipes, etc., etc., etc. I'll deal with all the breakdowns, mechanical problems, electrical problems, ANY problem - as long as I can hit the road again when they're repaired!! I wouldn't trade this freedom for the biggest mansion on the California coast . . . .
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Old 09-06-2008, 10:55 AM   #14
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">I fully understand that these things will happen and only posted to indicate that even though we love the life-style, we are no longer willing and able to contend with the negatives (from our perspective). </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Well said, understood, and respected. I expect that at some time in our future, (and many less than permanent moments in between now and then) we too will come to the same effort vs reward decision.
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