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Old 07-11-2020, 09:58 PM   #1
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Cabinet/Wood Shrinkage

Did some searching.. Anyone else having this issue.
Newmar Ventana 3412 purchased Febuary of this year.
Chassis Manufacture date August 2019.
Over the last 3 weeks we have begun to see some canbinet seperation/shrinkage at the front of the coach. One so much it fell apart.
We have contacted Newmar and our selling dealer. We are little concerned with the longevity only being at 120 days.
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Old 07-11-2020, 10:32 PM   #2
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OMG! That’s incredible! We have the exact same problem on our 2018 DS, but to a much lesser degree. It seems to only be the two cabinets in the front: over the entry door and over the ds window. I surmised a humidity problem since we were in Arizona when we noticed it, but the shrinkage has not changed as we’ve gotten into more humid summer weather. From my background in custom residential cabinetry, I would have to think that the moisture content of the wood was too high at the time of manufacture. Even though we’re out of warranty, we’ll be following your struggle. Good luck.
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Old 07-12-2020, 07:46 AM   #3
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Had the same problem. IMO, poor doweling was a problem. First Newmar had service center try to glue everything back together. That did not work and looked terrible. Newmar then replaced entire units over the drivers window and over the entrance door under warranty. So far replacements have held up
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Old 07-12-2020, 07:55 AM   #4
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Wood does have a tendency to expand and contract based on temp and humidity. Ideally wood should be down to about~7% moisture when using it for cabinets. Lengthwise the wood does not move too much but width wise it can shrink significantly depending on wood species.

Most special joints and glue, which when done correctly, can be very strong and robust.

Finishes also play a roll as they encapsulate the wood and prevent humidity form entering the wood and causing expansion and/or contraction.

Almost seems like the manufacturer needs to revisit quality control checking moisture, joint tolerances and type of glue used and finishing.\


I've had one door on my 2002 Monaco Windsor fail, reglued and all is good.
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Old 07-12-2020, 10:55 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Calpop45 View Post
OMG! Thats incredible! We have the exact same problem on our 2018 DS, but to a much lesser degree. It seems to only be the two cabinets in the front: over the entry door and over the ds window. I surmised a humidity problem since we were in Arizona when we noticed it, but the shrinkage has not changed as weve gotten into more humid summer weather. From my background in custom residential cabinetry, I would have to think that the moisture content of the wood was too high at the time of manufacture. Even though were out of warranty, well be following your struggle. Good luck.
We spent the weekend in Blythe, CA. A quick Colorado river trip and the cabinet over the entry has also begun to separate.
I'll keep you updated as to what answers/solution we get.
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Old 07-12-2020, 11:04 PM   #6
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I would never have expected that from Newmar. Wonder if they make their own cabinetry or do they outsource to a sub that has let their quality control slip?

Pretty sad either way.
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Old 07-12-2020, 11:16 PM   #7
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Just a thought: as we traveled today on somewhat rough and twisty roads, I noticed an elevated noise level from the cabinet over the driver window. It sounded like two pieces of wood rubbing together as we would make a turn. Im wondering if there is excessive movement in the front of the coach, thereby slowly destroying the cabinets. All other cabinetry is in great condition.
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Old 07-13-2020, 08:54 AM   #8
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As others have said, it's a problem with the joinery, not necessarily with wood shrinkage. If you notice on the pictures which show the light coming from behind the cabinet, the frames which hold the panel are also separated from each other. The panels are meant to float within a solidly built frame. In your case, the frames are poorly joined and are coming apart, most likely from vibration as much as shrinkage.


If I was to guess, from looking at the top photo, I would say the cabinet frame is made of a fairly thin soft wood, that was joined by rippled staples without glue and certainly no dowels. That is not going to be a long lasting construction, if correct.
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Old 07-14-2020, 07:29 AM   #9
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Oh, they have dowels. On my Ventana the dowels on the bottom corners broke in two.
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Old 07-14-2020, 09:27 AM   #10
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Cabinet/Wood Shrinkage

Newmar went to a bow tie like plastic joiner at each miter joint. Im guessing you will see that the plastic joiners have broke in two. Best thing to do is stain the edges of the center panel reassemble with glue and clamps.
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Old 07-16-2020, 07:19 AM   #11
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Newmar went to a bow tie like plastic joiner at each miter joint. Im guessing you will see that the plastic joiners have broke in two. Best thing to do is stain the edges of the center panel reassemble with glue and clamps.
Yes, here is what the joiner looks like. Two at each miter joint.
I was hoping to do just as you said... Stain, reassemble, and glue/staple.
Unfortunately there is some shrinkage because the miter joints do not and will not line up flush.
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