Go Back   iRV2 Forums > TRAVEL TRAILER, 5th WHEEL & TRUCK CAMPER FORUMS > 5th Wheel Discussion
Join iRV2 Today

Mission Statement: Supporting thoughtful exchange of knowledge, values and experience among RV enthusiasts.
  This discussion is proudly sponsored by:
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about their products on iRV2
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 07-05-2014, 08:34 AM   #1
Junior Member
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 1
Review of Redwood 2015 38RL and Crossroads RV

Earlier this year I promised to come back with a review after two months as full timer, George reminded me last week since it then was exactly two month and here is my review:

I am as you all know Swedish but prefer to write in bad English ;-).

Me and my wife made the decision to sell the house and become full timers in November last year. Hard to change from 4400 sqfeet to a little over 400 at first. I sold my companies in Europe and got retired at 51 and that is pretty unusual in Sweden where I am from. After seven years in the same place in the US it is time to start travel I use to have over 200 travel days per year and really hate flying and airports, hotels etc.

So when decided, step one was to find a unit that would be so comfortable that you can live in it for a longer time.

In November last year we planned to look for a condo in a place warmer and sunnier than Wisconsin during the winter.

First step was to find a unit.

I think I spent at least three weeks on internet trying to figure out what brands, manufacturers etc. that was available in the US. We hardly have Fifth Wheeler in Europe. Too expensive and roads to narrow I suppose and gas is over 9 dollars per gallon.

I found three manufacturers that I liked and started to compare. Got a good feeling and emailed when their home pages did not give enough info. Read reviews, forums, blogs etc.

Since I have time we took our trike down to Key West literally and started to visit dealers all the way up to Wisconsin. Stopped at a huge dealer in Florida and could walk through many different unites made from the three manufacturers I have pinpointed. Then a number of smaller dealers on the way back home.

Problem was that every time me and my wife entered a Redwood, it just clicked. Redwood felt just like Apple. Just works, great floor plans and exactly like Jonathan Ives and Steve Jobs thinking re. details.

You get the feeling right away this is not just an ordinary RV but put together by somebody who has been thinking, and thinking a lot. Intelligent solutions and smart thinking in details.

After all most of the RV manufacturers use generic components so a lot of brainpower is needed to really make the wow-feeling appear. Redwood has succeeded with this.

Given the fact that I really do not understand structural components. To get all components from one company like Redwood gets from Lippert make sense even if I don't have a clue if that is a good brand.

Next question is what size. My best friend told me right away. Don't save, go for the best and then add a bit or you are not going to be happy living in it full-time. We did so. Ordered whatever we could add except a built in generator and full paint. The later since I am Swedish and think the base paint looks more like a house. Americans most likely feel different and like more flashy outsides. Volvo is Swedish Cadillac is American.

We decided to go for the 38RL.

Went to a RAM dealer and got a new 3500 Dually as well after reading this forum. I have no clue of trucks but no European trucks in the US and RAM seemed to be ok.

From day one I still get the wow-feeling every time I step in to our home!

When I reefer to Apple my thoughts goes to Jobs and the Think Different campaign.

Redwood thinks different. Maybe not world changing things but the total experience is the sum of all details, it is all in the details.

Slide in slide - genius. Gives and extra 75cm. Kitchen layout with the possibility to have a real coffee brewer (European off course) hidden in the pantry, the finish of all the wooden interiors, a good quality dishwasher, a real fridge same brand as we had in our house, King Size bed, ability to have two heat pumps and the most important - the floor plan.

Then when it comes to technicalities I was given a lot of information when doing the factory tour.
Just a bit hard to know whether the information you get there is relevant since I don't know what to compare it to. Great however that a company dares to show off the factory from the inside.
I was not offered that from the two competitors.

We have had some minor problems and somebody told me that the RV business in the US are some 20 years behind the car industry. He was correct.

QC within the RV industry has a lot to improve. It is not ok to deliver units with pipe cutouts in the tanks, with broken recliners, with valves that does not shut, leaking water connections etc etc but again that is not the end of the world. Fixed once and then it is ok.

I still think it is important to have a perspective before one complain too much. In Europe we would pay at least 75% more for the same unit even before our 25% sales tax and it would be branded Mercedes or BMW. That would translate to about 190.000 dollars and nobody here is willing to pay that. Same applies to cars.

And after all looking at both Thor Industries and Crossroads annual financial closing of books report for 2012 I am happy that they are able to make a decent profit. They are not swimming in gold but hopefully they will survive so that we are able to get our warranties taken care of and spare parts in the long run. A strong surviving company is important for us customers. I am thinking of all SAABs customers with small or no chance to get hold of popular spare parts today after their bankruptcy.

As some of you know Carrier, one of my second choices actually did not survive, not because they were manufacturing a bad product but they happened to be a customer in a bank that was bought up and despite that they actually were able to provide what the "new" bank required still was put in to bankruptcy.

So all companies have to cut corners somewhere but I am very happy that Redwood are showing black figures and hopefully they will stay in business long.

However, in the unit we got the factory had connected the wires to the brakes wrong. That is far from acceptable. Dealer was confused and did not have all the equipment needed to test the new disc brakes immediately. Our RAM had to stay in service for two days since no one thought that brake wiring on the RV was the problem. It had been hauled all the way from Indiana to South Dakota. I got hold of the owner of the company producing the brake boxes and I was not the first to call. That is not acceptable.

But all in all. Redwood is a clear winner. They have that little extra that the competition lack. With one exception which Andy who showed us the factory confirmed several times.

Marketing and communication can be improved. Homepage had outdated pics (better today), not one single video online even if several dealers have their own on YouTube.

Yesterday when I checked their brochure still offers 1/5 years warranty even if it should be 2/5 I think. Before buying that was one of the things that confused me so I emailed Crossroads just to make sure it was 2/5.

First email no answer at all, reminder no answer. Called and left my name and number no one returned my call. I also emailed some other very simple questions in total five. Some where answered within weeks some not at all.

My second question out of total five was what color scheme will our RV have on the outside resp. Inside. We first asked one dealer and answer nobody knows. We then asked Andy at the factory tour and same answer, outside is set but was wrong on Redwoods homepage at the time, but inside you don't know until you get your unit. Unacceptable to since I am going to live in the unit and that was one of the unanswered email to Crossroads. The competitors answered fast and correct but here I think Crossroads have stepped up today.

Emailed my last question from a different email address before this review now in June and no answer, two reminders etc. when I finally got a person in this case Jim Lazzarinos email I received an answer within 30 minutes!

And then a very prompt and professional follow up even at 11.18PM. Made me very happy. He helped me out once before with a small thing. So my thinking is first always ask the dealer and second try to get hold of a person on Crossroads, don't use their general email.

Problem with us is that we did not do it the typical American way with first finding a dealer and then a brand but the opposite. And very few dealers have more than a couple of brands except a large one in Florida.

I am seldom impressed and reading this forum where every one says Redwoods customer service is outstanding and earlier I did receive an answer after weeks or not at all but that has changed.

I also understand that if Redwood should try to handle every single question on every single detail they most likely needs an army of staff. That must be the dealers job. So it is a balance.

Back to what I would have changed if I was the owner of Redwood:

as being from Sweden the country who invented safety belts, Airbags and Volvo I would not place the emergency window behind the rear ladder

Improve QC a bit since for full timers it is annoying to put their home to service for small items like cutouts in a tank or a leaking valves, loose cables etc. If I was a dealer I would employ a person paid by the dealers to do the last QC since they end up with all the problems in the end

I would offer carefree batteries as an options - easier to steal Mona Lisa in the Louvre than to check battery level on our 38RL

I would give more options for micro/oven since it is for full timers

Offer a tempur mattress solution as an option

Use the same size for the spare tire at least the same rating

Change the Redwood logo from robust capitals from the seventies to something more Elegant reflecting 2014 and the fact that Redwood is not a VOLVO but a Maserati

I would introduce a chat or a faster email response system

Update the homepage with both actual pics and small 360 videos and a success stories section, change the text in the warranty Still 1/5 if it still is 2/5 and that is just confusing and very unprofessional to have printing mistakes for over 6 month and then blame the marketing people (Andy's words)

Find a door knob system more convenient than the present plastic ring

More and more people do use WiFi more than local TV and one options should be a per wiring coax for a WiFi antenna

Use the same key for all outdoor locks

Offer an option with a shade covering the sun window in the bathroom

Offer an option with a built in BOSE sound system. JBL sound bar is ok but as being your home you might want a bit higher standard.

Offer a litterbox solution for those traveling with cats. A small hole under the coach in the living room leading to the basement and the extra storage in the back for easy litter change

Remote controlled slides with or without cable

USB outlets with full iPad amp not just the standard iPhone current

Option to buy an end table to the recliners

The list can be long. After all most of things is just cosmetics but Redwood has already changed the market with intelligent solutions so why stop. If they can get me to put a cutting board with a hole in to be on my plus list before deciding a cat hole would for sure be two pluses.

We must also understand that it is a very complex unit with a lot of systems, all bumping around at 65mph on the road and things do break. What I am after is that all must be ok for the PDI.

Summary: Redwood won the game but can improve.

BasilFawlty is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 RV Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

iRV2.com RV Community - Are you about to start a new improvement on your RV or need some help with some maintenance? Do you need advice on what products to buy? Or maybe you can give others some advice? No matter where you fit in you'll find that iRV2 is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with other RV owners, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create an RV blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 07-05-2014, 10:12 AM   #2
Senior Member
glennwest's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 1,036
Welcome to the forum. Hope you are content with your choice. I was not impressed with Redwoods but that me. God bless

2003 Teton Grand Freedom. 2006 Freightliner Century 120 with Detroit 14L and Ultrashift.. Full time going from job to job. Building and maintaining plants across the USA. Sold 2006 Mobile Suites 32TK3
glennwest is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2014, 11:13 AM   #3
Senior Member
mo5er's Avatar
Evergreen Owners Club
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Springfield, MO
Posts: 417
Welcome to the forum!! I hope the Redwood serves you well for many years.
Keith & Drena with Casey & P-nut (dogs) & Gabby (cat)
2014 Silverado 3500HD Dually 4X4
2014 Evergreen Bay Hill 365rl
mo5er is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2014, 05:28 AM   #4
Senior Member
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 124
Good luck with your redwood. Any rig at any price can have problems.
sk734 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2014, 08:47 PM   #5
Senior Member
Thor Owners Club
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 2,881
Lotsa luck with your Redwood. Safe and Happy Travels.
Fred1609 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-08-2014, 03:58 PM   #6
Junior Member
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 5
Can you give any input on how the trailer does in hot weather ? Is it insulated well so the trailer does not heat up fast. How is it in cold weather ? Does it hold the heat from overnight so it does not feel as cold as the outside temp in the morning.

We bought a Columbus Palomino fifth wheel and it states it is well insulated, including the slides. From our experience the last year and one half, It is NOT insulated well.

Thanks for your input on your new trailer.

Jon_Celia is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2014, 09:03 AM   #7
Senior Member
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 1,481
What most don't realize is that even though the manufacture has put gobs of insulation in it there are still holes all over he trailer. Any outside orifice needs to be looked at. Even where the slide is making contact with the exterior. If it has a rack and pinion slide that moves on rollers inside the trailer then lift the carpet on the slide and see if you can see day light. There are gaps all over these things. Even dual pane windows won't help in the cold if the trailer has air leaks.

Cumminsfan is offline   Reply With Quote

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities

Copyright 2002-2015 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:51 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.