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Old 08-12-2019, 07:04 PM   #15
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It seems that the RV industry may have gotten itself tangled up in a perfect storm . . .

Back in 2017 into 2018, shipments of newly manufactured travel trailers were hitting all time highs. This is from the Recreational Vehicle Industry Association (rvia.org) Winter 2017 "Road Signs" newsletter: "RV shipments have continued to grow at a record setting pace. RV shipments in the 3rd quarter of 2017 totaled 121,565 units, soaring 245 above last year's 3rd quarter, to the highest level in more than four decades. Moreover, the pace of shipments in the first three quarters of 2017 has been the highest since the early expansion of the industry in 1973 . . . RV shipments are expected to total 505,600 in 2017 and to increase to 520,700 in 2018. This represents an outstanding achievement for the RV industry both in terms of breaking the 500 thousand mark as well as establishing a record number of consecutive years of expansion." My understanding is that production has since slowed down.

Around the time that newsletter article came out, an inside sales rep at ORV told me that the company felt no need to build a presence in the eastern part of the country because their units scheduled for production were spoken for months in advance already. Anyone who has taken the factory tour understands how small a company ORV actually is. Any time there is a struggle for production to keep up with demand, errors are going to increase and overall build quality is going to decrease.

While all of the "sale-abrations" were going on, another problem was developing. With so many high school students bypassing career and technical schools to prep for Master's degrees (or better) at four year colleges, a shortage of RV technicians was developing. Super sales records coupled with fewer RV techs led to tremendous backlogs in repair centers - to the point where RVIA and the Recreational Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA) joined forces to create a state of the art technical institute to train RV service technicians. It's located in the Elkhart, Indiana area. The following quote is from an article that appeared on the RVIA web site in June 2018: "On Thursday, June 7, the RV Industry Association (RVIA) Board of Directors approved a comprehensive strategic plan and multi-million-dollar investment to address RV owner satisfaction by creating a supporting foundation, the RV Technical Institute (RVTI), to solve the RV industry’s shortage of trained technicians and to implement metrics to track the RV customer experience."

So, now the RV industry has reported incredibly strong sales over the past couple of years and there aren't enough service technicians to fix our old rigs, let alone service the new ones that have been rolling off the assembly lines. No wonder all the dealers are backed up.

I do believe that ORV makes a better product than most of its peers, but I also think that, just like other manufacturers, they're having a difficult time controlling quality - an issue that seems to plague the industry.

Our trailer, which we purchased new in 2017, had one major issue that may not have had anything to do with quality control issues, and a number of smaller issues that did. On the service end, whether it's your local dealer or Todd and his team at the ORV factory, the service staff is stressed from having more work than they can handle. I have no doubt it's a difficult time for both RV customers and the dealers who service them.

All that being said, I gotta tell you, my husband and I love this trailer, and I would be hard pressed to go back to another manufacturer.

This is an interesting thread with many good comments!

Mary
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Old 08-12-2019, 07:08 PM   #16
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Other than the floor and slide issue, just fix them and move on. Do some research on the floor and slide to see what the problem really is. Take some pictures and sent them to Todd. He might have some ideas about fixing them for you or the dealer. I have to fix stuff now and then. It's a house going down the road for thousands of miles. It's the best built house in a very bad neighborhood. The brite side is,,, there are many people looking to buy a ORV TT used and they hold their value well.

For what they cost, they should be perfect, but none are. I was at a CG this summer with a rally of Newell motorhomes,$2 million+. Their factory tech was there the entire time busy. How would you like to spend $2 million and have issues,,LOL. Enjoy you TT, don't overthink problems, use it. Someday you will sell it and move on, just like the rest of us will.
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Old 08-12-2019, 07:19 PM   #17
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My ORV trailer was just one small issue away from perfect when I picked it up.

But if I started a discussion about it, who would read it?
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Old 08-12-2019, 07:45 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Highway 4x4 View Post
Other than the floor and slide issue, just fix them and move on. Do some research on the floor and slide to see what the problem really is. Take some pictures and sent them to Todd. He might have some ideas about fixing them for you or the dealer. I have to fix stuff now and then. It's a house going down the road for thousands of miles. It's the best built house in a very bad neighborhood. The brite side is,,, there are many people looking to buy a ORV TT used and they hold their value well.

For what they cost, they should be perfect, but none are. I was at a CG this summer with a rally of Newell motorhomes,$2 million+. Their factory tech was there the entire time busy. How would you like to spend $2 million and have issues,,LOL. Enjoy you TT, don't overthink problems, use it. Someday you will sell it and move on, just like the rest of us will.
Why would I call Todd to ask how to fix something when his own guys couldn't even put it together right. Seriously man, the stuff I'm finding is ridiculously preventable. Most of it comes down to the screw guy easing up on the morning redbulls and GENTLY putting the screws in. What do you think is going to happen with a power drill and a wood brace? It was quite obvious to me that there was also zero quality control going on when this thing rolled out to the dealer. To me, these mistakes go way beyond just simple acceptable lapses in workmanship. It's an employee owned company so you'd think there would be a little pride involved too. Nope. I won't ever recommend this brand to anyone and I hope through that, I make a small contribution to them either going under or improving their product.
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Old 08-12-2019, 07:57 PM   #19
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RV's are more like houses than cars, we need to stop comparing them to cars when it comes to construction. Cars are built by robots on an assembly line, from sub assemblies manufactured off site, nothing like the rv industry

I keep quoting the condo my son moved into a few years back, it cost north of $400K and had numerous issues from, unalighned doors, too light switches not connected. He had a 30 period to note any deficiencies, otherwise he would have to wait for a year for the next round of repairs. Now that he has lived there for a few years all the bugs seem to be worked out. Is this what our expectations of the RV industry should be? The answer probably lies somewhere in between the home industry and Vehicle manufacturing

What separates the men from the boys is the customer service after the sale. While in your case they may not be living up to your expectations, most people who have owned several RVs' are quite pleased with ORV and the post sale service they offer.

Could not say it better. Having had two Aerolite products and now a ORV, night and day on how solid the ORV is built. Yes we had a few minor cosmetic issues I took care of myself, but otherwise after 21 months of ownership I would buy another.

The thing is just a beast. Better cooled, better heated, more comfortable, better cabinets, more storage, handles the bad road so much better (X4 suspension)...


If I had to put one production tide bit out there as I have heard from a few other is: some sheet metal screws to put in with a impact drill, they "over torque" the screw and partially crack the screw. At some point the screw head falls off along with what ever it was holding. I have had a number of them under the trailer for grounds, propane lines and electrical wires snap off. If you look at the screw carefully you can see the screw was twisted right below the head and starting to rust. Caused by too much torque.
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Old 08-12-2019, 08:00 PM   #20
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7 posts about how you HATE your new RV and how you won't ask for help! Is this your first RV?
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Old 08-12-2019, 08:10 PM   #21
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most people who have owned several RVs' are quite pleased with ORV and the post sale service they offer.

Sounds like you've swallowed enough crap to now say it tastes good.....
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Old 08-12-2019, 08:19 PM   #22
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Sounds like you've swallowed enough crap to now say it tastes good.....

Thanks for your input, quality info like that is hard to find these days.
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Old 08-12-2019, 08:36 PM   #23
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Sounds like you've swallowed enough crap to now say it tastes good.....
That's exactly what I was thinking.

Many suffering from ORV stockholm syndrome.
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Old 08-12-2019, 08:47 PM   #24
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7 posts about how you HATE your new RV and how you won't ask for help! Is this your first RV?
I didn't ask for help because I don't need it. However, I do expect that something brand new that lightly hangs on the Northwood manufacturing reputation in both quality and price should roll off the manufacturing floor with some semblance of "give a [Mod Edit]." Mine unfortunately lacks it.
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Old 08-12-2019, 09:56 PM   #25
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As others have so eloquently stated, ORVís are not perfect but are one of the better overall units made on the market. Prior to stumbling on ORV, we were going to reluctanty slam down the cash on an Airstream. I just could not justify the over inflated costs on those things. Even with those trailers, they also have manufacturing issues.
When I brought mine home, I had some minor issues along with a blown out panel but the big thing is the heater did not work. I worked with my local dealer and Todd at ORV to work through the issues. I still have a door to replace but I am not going to leave my trailer at the repair shop for a week! No big deal, I told them that I would rather reschedule late in the camping season, they said no problem since they are booked weeks out.
Long story short.....take a breath and relax. Try to fix your trailer to the point that you can use it, then go enjoy it. Take it back to the stealership in the winter time. Happy Outings!!
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Old 08-12-2019, 10:02 PM   #26
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Hi all. Just curious if any of you are having quality issues with your new ORV travel trailer. I just bought a new 28BKS and so far it has been riddled with issues. So far nothing major that would warrant sitting at the dealer for 6 weeks to get fixed but just small issues for now. Here's a list.

-sliding room door restraint strap broke first trip home. The restraint design was a poor design for the door.
- sliding door support rail was sagging due to not enough screws. The ones that were in were zipped in so hard they stripped.
- wife plugged her hair dryer into the bathroom plug for the first time and the whole panel caved inward.
- I've got a raise in the floor. It looks like a corner of the sub-floor section isn't attached or something because it raises and lowers depending on the way the trailer is leveled.
- Screen door retention screws on the access doors stripped and barely holding the bracket on.
- When I move the slide in and out, there appears to be an awful lot of wall movement between the couch/dining table etc. Almost like the floor is now moving with the perpendicular wall.

All in all, I feel this is a extremely poor built coach. As a former northwood owner, I'm quite surprised and disappointed.
Sorry for you minor trouble....itís only a trailer

I hope you did a very through PD inspection before hooking up and taking it home...there is a PDI punch list you can find on the Irv2 forum.

How far from the factory are? Great people in the service dept...I know they would like your feedback.

Did you do the tour of the orv plant....if not you should have...so you can share your wealth of knowledge to the production crew and your expertise on how to build a trailer. Sounds like you know quite a bit.

How many National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recalls has ORV been instructed to do.
2 in 10 years that I am aware of. Both were voluntary. Probably lowest in industry.

If you like I will cut and paste all your comments here and send them to the President of Northwood Industries ..he is the head of Arctic Fox and ORV....as it appears you don't have either of the companies email address.
Please let me know.

If you donít like it sell it....it is people like you on this forum who are the reason I would rather spend time with my grandkids than reading this stuff..life is way too short...for this crap...as indicated in El Paso and Dayton.

Travel safely...and remember a trailer is a trailer is a trailer.

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Old 08-12-2019, 10:58 PM   #27
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Why would I call Todd to ask how to fix something when his own guys couldn't even put it together right. Seriously man, the stuff I'm finding is ridiculously preventable. Most of it comes down to the screw guy easing up on the morning redbulls and GENTLY putting the screws in. What do you think is going to happen with a power drill and a wood brace? It was quite obvious to me that there was also zero quality control going on when this thing rolled out to the dealer. To me, these mistakes go way beyond just simple acceptable lapses in workmanship. It's an employee owned company so you'd think there would be a little pride involved too. Nope. I won't ever recommend this brand to anyone and I hope through that, I make a small contribution to them either going under or improving their product.
Well, you're not happy and it doesn't look like you're going to ever be happy with ORV. I agree with Coops, sell it and move on. No point in beating yourself up over this, it's just a trailer. Good luck.
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Old 08-12-2019, 11:39 PM   #28
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To the OP, sell it and go buy another one. I would suggest you read ALL the brand forums 1st, so you can find a brand that has no problems. I couldn't.
I came from a 2013 Northwood Fox Mountain. It had just as many problems as my 2019 ORV has. In fact I had the infamous faded cap. Zero help from NW.
I've had 3-4 recalls on my 2018 Ram 2500. My wifes 2015 Camry has dash squeaks that come a go. Almost impossible to fix. IMO not much made these days is perfect.
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