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Old 04-20-2012, 04:47 PM   #1
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thor and newmar

Did these two factories merge or share floorplans?
I was just looking at some new 2012 ventanas, dutch stars. WOW the coaches looked to much alike of the thor tuscany and astorias

same door step lifty thing
same baggage doors, i mean exactly same number and opening layout
even the ones that hurt your head when the slides are out.
really freaked me out
i know they share chassis (f/l) but it was weird
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Old 04-20-2012, 05:16 PM   #2
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I doubt if Newmar would ever drop to the level of a Thor.

Ken
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Old 04-20-2012, 06:37 PM   #3
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I doubt if Newmar would ever drop to the level of a Thor.

Ken


my Damon (prior to thor) layout is what caught my attention
I look closely at baggage or basement doors and how much i would bend to get in for stuff,
and since we have been eyeing a few for a replacement.(yes we want a bigger one)...it really gave me pause, especially since they are both on f/l chassis

levels of quality have me in hysterics,
almost all use same windows, doors, seals, a/c's etc. roll the dice on how long a window will hold its seal,
f/l chassis is same

its all just a question of how well they assemble the respective unit along the line
now the million dollar units are almost perfect...but I am not spending that much on a rolling yacht.
we will trade all for a big boat first
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Old 04-20-2012, 06:57 PM   #4
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There are only so many floor plans you can have in these things. If you visit all RV manufacturer's sites, you will see virtually the same floor plans...every once in a while something will be radically different, but not often.
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Old 04-20-2012, 07:35 PM   #5
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I can't see Thor and Newmar doing anything together. My experiance with Thor could fill a book. From very low quality, non existant customer service and on and on. They could not even send parts correctly or to the right address. And I needed a lot of them!
Anyway took the loss and moved on to a Newmar fifth wheel. Not perfect but a lot better.
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Old 04-20-2012, 08:25 PM   #6
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Differences in quality control, fit and finish, and appointments can only go so far. There are only a few options for the house appliances, the onboard systems, chassis, and floor plan. So why do some manufacturer's products fail early and often and others just seem to go and go?

It can only be in the structure of the box, and the care with which the parts are all 'married' both to the system and to the box itself, the quality of the fastening systems, and the attention to all the little things. When we purchase, we are marrying into that particular family. In my book, that's not the best time to rush into things.

Take your time.
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Old 04-20-2012, 09:42 PM   #7
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It's a gross over-simplification to say the chassis are the same - Freightliner configures their chassis in almost an infinite variety of ways, as specified by the coach builder. Just because two manufacturers use the Freightliner XC chassis does not mean the chassis are at all the same. Even within one manufacturer, different models often have a different chassis configuration, e.g. longer wheelbase, IFS vs solid axle, bigger engines, larger fuel tanks, side vs rear radiator, alloy vs steel wheels, different axles and GVWR, etc. etc.
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Old 04-21-2012, 08:06 AM   #8
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I totally agree that the factory level is where quality starts and stops in Rvs. I have been to Fleetwood factories and the difference between what I saw there and visits to the Newmar factory were huge. I suggest every Rver take a few visits, it is quite an eye opener. You need to ask questions and not just take the suger coated tour. At Fleetwood there were huge amounts of turn over in the mostly young work force. Pay was low. Some of the employees were from temp agencys for the day. Newmar, on the other hand, had a more mature workforce. Many worked at the factory for a lot of years. The employee parking lot was filled with new or nice looking cars (Some drove their buggies )
I also stopped at a small Rv factory in Nappennee which built an off brand Rv I've never heard of. It looked like something out of the 18th century. Dark, dirty, junk piled everywhere. I can only imagine what would come out of that factory.
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Old 04-21-2012, 03:34 PM   #9
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I totally agree that the factory level is where quality starts and stops in Rvs. I have been to Fleetwood factories and the difference between what I saw there and visits to the Newmar factory were huge. I suggest every Rver take a few visits, it is quite an eye opener. You need to ask questions and not just take the suger coated tour. At Fleetwood there were huge amounts of turn over in the mostly young work force. Pay was low. Some of the employees were from temp agencys for the day. Newmar, on the other hand, had a more mature workforce. Many worked at the factory for a lot of years. The employee parking lot was filled with new or nice looking cars (Some drove their buggies )
I also stopped at a small Rv factory in Nappennee which built an off brand Rv I've never heard of. It looked like something out of the 18th century. Dark, dirty, junk piled everywhere. I can only imagine what would come out of that factory.
Since 80% of Newmar workforce drive buggies are ride bikes to work I don't see how you could of seen to many cars and trucks in there parking lot also Newmar only give tours in the after noon when 95% of the workforce has all ready ride off on there bikes.
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Old 04-21-2012, 05:15 PM   #10
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Since 80% of Newmar workforce drive buggies are ride bikes to work I don't see how you could of seen to many cars and trucks in there parking lot also Newmar only give tours in the after noon when 95% of the workforce has all ready ride off on there bikes.
I have been to the Newmar factory 3 times. Once staying there for two weeks. They have several Amish that ride their bikes or buggies to the plant but it isn't 80%. I took the tour but also talked to many Newmar workers both at the plant and in town. I also talked to several former employees and that is where you can learn alot. I'm not saying Newmar is perfect, far from it. I've had problems with mine. That is why I was at the plant for two weeks. But as a production worker myself (retired), I saw a big difference in how the two plants where run.
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Old 04-22-2012, 12:53 PM   #11
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We took the Newmar factory tour several years ago (in the morning) and were told that 85% of the workers were Amish. I came away highly impressed with their quality and their fit and finish. They also build to order than build to inventory so they have a hedge against the recession. When and if we buy another coach, it will be a Newmar.

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Old 04-22-2012, 08:24 PM   #12
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I'm not an expert in Amish but not all Amish ride buggies or bikes I noticed while in Napannee. Many are just regular folks with cars, houses with electric, etc. I think there are different off shoots. Someone told me the Amish are often confused with Mennonites. Anyway, I found the people around Napannee to be very friendly and hard working.
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Old 04-23-2012, 05:13 AM   #13
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i've been to both thor four winds plant and newmar. i really didn't see much difference in the building of the smaller units. the real only diifference i saw was the way the walls were built, which could be good, but also probably has their own set of problems. they both seemed to build a nice unit. buy what you can afford.
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Old 04-23-2012, 05:55 AM   #14
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They may be on the same chassis but I doubt very much there is any relationship between the two manufacturers.
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