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Old 08-22-2013, 03:15 PM   #1
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What is the best trailer to buy.

I have a 2011 caliber made by heartland. I do not like it.Taking it to many times to the shop to be fix. Always something wrong with it.
What is a good trailer to buy.Is a Dutchman or a Coachman good. What do you think. Looking for 27 foot to a 29 foot with one slide out. looking for a 2013. What is a good brand to buy. (Bumper Pull)
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Old 08-22-2013, 04:15 PM   #2
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Although I've been looking, and purchased a shorter trailer, I can share a couple of thoughts. Although I don't like what they are doing with some of their smaller, lightweight units, Jayco products are pretty good and have the advantage of a two year warranty. In temrs of buying higher quality units (and that's difficult to define at times) I would suggest the Winnebago One or Minnie Winnie product lines. We're picking up our new Winnie 2201DS next week...it's much smaller than what you want, but from my examination, the quality is better than much of the mass produced market. And, the Winnebago One units that I've looked at look very nice and well built. If you are near a Arctic Fox/Nash dealer, I'd look at their units as Northwood MFG is known for well built trailers. I found a Nash trailer similiar to what we purchased, but there aren't any Nash dealers anywhere near the Cleveland OH area. And...I should have mentioned that Winnebago bought out Sunnybrook and is making trailers/fifth wheel units using the Sunnybrook name, and that line was always considered to be an above average product.

Good luck in your search!
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Old 08-22-2013, 04:44 PM   #3
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We have a 29 foot Rockwood we love it.It has a outside kitchen which is awesome no cooking in camper and the bathroom is so big we never use camp facilities it's a 2013 pull it with our 3500 Ram Diesel truck so good luck hope for many years of great camping...
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Old 08-22-2013, 06:40 PM   #4
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Dutchman is by Thor and I would avoid entry level Thor products. SO far, all you have mentioned are entry level trailers.

You may want to step up to a nice used Jayco, Arctic Fox or Sunny Brook (now owned by Winnebago).

Ken
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Old 08-22-2013, 09:01 PM   #5
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X2 on Jayco. Ours got through its two-year warranty without one issue that required a visit to the dealership. Thank goodness. It's a thousand miles away.

The one problem that did need fixing was a worn electrical brake wire due to a poor job of securing it during manufacture. I had it fixed at a nearby horse trailer sales dealer on a Saturday so we wouldn't be delayed for a planned trip on Sunday.

I called Jayco on Monday. They okayed the repair. I sent them the bill and was reimbursed. My other contacts with Jayco customer service have dealt with requests for part numbers, etc., and they have always been prompt and cooperative.

Some units have given people problems, but overall it seems to be a good mid level manufacturer.
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Old 08-22-2013, 09:13 PM   #6
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I would question if Winnebago has changed their construction practices since my Itasca was built. $200,000 plus rig that had no primer put on the sub frames for the basement cargo holds. They just sprayed a single coat of black paint that started peeling off after 2 years. Rust followed shortly. Then they hide behind a ONE Year warranty.

A sub-$40K BMW 3 series gets 12 years? Wazzup with that?

BMW Ultimate ServiceŽ - Warranty
...Rust protection for 2006 and newer models. For 2006 and newer models, we also provide a 12-year limited warranty rust perforation warranty without mileage limitation. This warranty is for defects in materials or workmanship that results in rust perforation of the vehicle body. This coverage period begins at the start of the New Vehicle/SAV Limited Warranty. BMW Extended Vehicle...
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Old 08-22-2013, 09:18 PM   #7
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If you start looking at TT that can be towed by say an F-150 and in the 26-29' range you will usually see the word Ultra-Lite. That means that they have to scrimp somewhere to save weight and that is usually in the frame and other supporting structures. That translates into cheap, flimsy and prone to a lot of TT movement when people walk inside. I've read of some with frame cracks very early in the life of the TT, or signs of frame weakness.

We've owned three TT's that we pulled with an F-150 and weighed in at around 7,000# loaded. That was the max that I wanted to pull. I did not want to get toward the maximum that I could pull for the safety margin.

What we didn't like about TT is the fact that most are suspended to just barely carry the maximum weight. The tires are also just barely able to carry the maximum weight. The don't come with anything but drum brakes. They have no shock absorbers which means that any TT up and down movement will effect the TV. No shocks means that TT sway will also be an issue and means that you will have to have a good WD hitch with good sway control. It is my opinion that having shocks reduces the chance of TT sway.

We did talk with a decent CW general manager and he said that Jayco does build a better unit. MY advice is when you are looking use a cheap digital caliper and measure the thickness of the sub frame. Get some idea of the possible differences in the frames. If the frame is thicker there is a better chance that the TT will be of a better quality. I didn't do this when we looked and we have switched to a MH. If you are serious about finding a decent quality TT check the frame thickness. It might cost a bit more but you're chances of getting a better product are greater.

TeJay
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Old 08-26-2013, 06:06 PM   #8
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Wow just found this site. Thank you so much for posting such good info on TT's.
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Old 08-26-2013, 07:08 PM   #9
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We had a 2010 NT 26LRSS and other than the upper cabinet hinges popping out we had no problems. Never took it back for a Heartland related problem. I did have a bent axle in the 2nd year of use. Wouldn't of been covered under warranty. With that being said I fell there are as good or better units out there. I would look at any Northwood or OutdoorRV product. Northwood will let there customers take their units to another repair facility if a dealer is not close by. Also Northwood and OutdoorRV make there own frames. What was said about finding one that has a high CCC is also important. Most RV makers are skimping on build quality.
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Old 08-27-2013, 06:30 PM   #10
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Here's my lengthy 2 cents on our new TT.

We have a 2013 Hill Country HCT32RL 38' made by Crossroads (Thor). I purchased it new last October. This was a new model for 2012. There was only one reason why we purchased THIS particular trailer. The inside was done western/rustic like the interior of my wife's 2005 Sundowner 727 8012 horse trailer. It was exactly what we wanted and although it had a MSRP of just over $50K, I purchased it for $31,500. I have towed it less than 2000 careful miles, and we have stayed in the trailer 3 weeks total.
In the 10 months since I purchased it, I have done the following:

Replaced the Wipe Seals on ALL 3 Slide Outs (Sides and Top)
-Slide Mechanisms are eating the seals with every use and require adjust.
-Have had MAJOR leaks at the bottom of each slide because of this!
-Carpet at the bottom of the slides gets SOAKED when it rains!
-Thank GOD I have Covered Storage at home for it!

Skylight was replaced because it Broke into pieces with no explanation!

Low Point Drains had to be "relocated" because they were literally caught in the electric stabilizer jacks and were going up and down in the back

Fresh Tank Drain Cap Cracked/Broke/Fell Off

Water Pump Failed during the First Use, Would Not Pressurize

Fresh Water Storage Tank had a missing anti-freeze shut-off valve that flooded the master bedroom/bathroom on 1st use (Factory Mistake, Oops!)

Sani-Flush System Failed on 1st use. Factory forgot to tighten a fitting under the sink in the bathroom. This caused a VERY LARGE FLOOD.

Shower Head Hose Cap Broke and Failed on 1st Use

2 Entire Awning LED Strips Failed. Service tech at ExploreUSA noticed. I never even knew it had LED lights outside (though I was always curious about the interior switch that said "Patio LED Lights")

Roof "Membrane" wont stay sealed at the front of the trailer, under the Master Bedroom AC Unit. Air gets under and causes the roof to "puff up" like an old convertible, flap in the wind and cause wrinkles. It is currently at the shop right now (going on 1 1/2 months) having this issue remedied. I have picked it up twice from them, only to get on the highway, turn my mirrors up and see a poofy, flapping roof!!

The roof membrane has been punctured by exposed staples/nails at the tops of the slides (where the membrane folds over the sides)

Every Axle Seal on the trailer (4) has been replaced at least twice! Grease is always evident on my wheels, i think it gets over-greased every time they service it!

Interior Wall Adjacent to the Front Door is being replaced due to Factory Defect (only because I decided to get picky)

Both A/C Units and several vents had to be adjusted because of rattles and unusual noises. Pieces of metal foil are always falling out of my ceiling vents!

Living Room TV is on a Swivel so you can use it outside with the outdoor kitchen/entertainment area. Nice concept, except they only use one metal pin to secure the TV swivel mount during travel which promptly broke the first time I pulled the trailer. I now use a carefully positioned towel to keep the TV and mount in place while towing.

Overall Poor Build-Quality! I spent many hours caulking and spraying expanding foam everywhere I could see an entry point for mice, rats, snakes, etc... Within the first month this thing was FULL of mice. In 8 years i've never so much as seen a mice turd in my wife's Sundowner!
I have since remedied this issue but it took much patience and diligence.

No option for a 12V disconnect switch to prevent killing the battery.
Dealer argued when I wanted one installed, even though I was paying for it. In the end, I got it, yet they couldn't quite figure out how to operate it. (ON is ON and OFF is OFF, this isn't rocket science folks!)

This is all in the first 10 months of ownership. I have experienced similar issues with most every trailer I have owned, but this was my first NEW travel trailer and I was not expecting to spend this much time reconditioning and diagnosing problems on a BRAND NEW, 30K trailer!

Thor has been great about approving any and every warranty claim I present to them, but the ongoing roof issue has me really worried! I have less than 60 days left on my 1 year factory warranty, then im stuck with my Xtra-Ryde coverage. 2012 models had a 2-yr warranty. 2013's came with a 1-yr warranty. I think they are aware of the issues, yet I haven't found any other Hill Country owners expressing their opinions (good or bad) anywhere online.

I still love the trailer, but i'm not impressed with Crossroads/Thor or their build quality.
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Old 08-27-2013, 06:34 PM   #11
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The roof is worrying you? You need an entirely new roof! Wood and all.
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Old 08-27-2013, 06:54 PM   #12
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I wouldn't personally speculate that it needs new wood under the membrane. The trailer only saw 4 non-consecutive days of mild-moderate rain and I have never found a problem with it leaking in the front where the air gets in. I have walked on the roof myself and it is stable and does not have any areas that make noise, crunch, or feel soft. Unless i'm missing something, why would it need an entirely new roof? Membrane.. definately, but all the decking? I would be afraid they would cause even more issues!
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Old 08-27-2013, 06:54 PM   #13
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You still love the trailer. I'd have dropped it off in their showroom floor. At midnight.
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Old 08-27-2013, 06:56 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HarlenReed View Post
I wouldn't personally speculate that it needs new wood under the membrane. The trailer only saw 4 non-consecutive days of mild-moderate rain and I have never found a problem with it leaking in the front where the air gets in. I have walked on the roof myself and it is stable and does not have any areas that make noise, crunch, or feel soft. Unless i'm missing something, why would it need an entirely new roof? Membrane.. definately, but all the decking? I would be afraid they would cause even more issues!
The adhesive is useless now. Staples coming up.
It was POORLY built. I'd return it and get another brand.
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