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Old 02-19-2012, 01:09 PM   #1
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Has the Paint / Gel Coat Checking and Cracking Probelm Been Resolved in New Newmars

Ok, I really debated on whether to post a question on this subject again, but actually my question addresses if the problem has been finally resolved on new production motorhomes. Before posting this I read numerous posts on this subject dating back 5 plus years. These older posts state that the paint and fiberglass gelcoat slowly starts to develop checks and cracks on the surface of the composite fiberglass exterior sidewalls as the coach starts to age. This problem has been reported by many owners, with some reporting during the manufactures warranty and most reporting outside of warranty. I also understand that there may even be a movement right now by some to start a class action against Newmar. I have read many theories on why this happens, including differential thermal expansion between the fiberglass outer skin which was laminated to a thin layer of luan plywood backing, the gel coat on the fiberglass panel being applied to thin, etc. I also understand that the problem has occurred with many RV manufactures that used this same type of skin material that was sold by an independent manufacture. So here is my question.........

Has Newmar (and even the RV industry) figure out what the problem was and has it been rectified so that it does not on 2012 and newer units? The Newmar brochure states that the sidewall has a "Composite One Piece Gelcoat Exterior Sidewall". The website does not contain any information on construction at all. I am hoping to not again start the legal and moral debate that occurred on the previous numerous posts about this subject.
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Old 02-19-2012, 01:30 PM   #2
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bucket - There is NO "theory" as the actual cause IS positively identified as that one brand of panel - which was a near monopoly industry supplier before they went out of business. The physical/chemical/thermal theories plastered all around the 'net of how that brand causes the checking are irrelevant - it's simply those panels. There has not been a repeat of the checking since - unless it really was a paint boo-boo or paint crazing both of which can be fixed by repainting unlike the panel induced issue. This has been posted several times as well....

Newmar went with C-Tech panels in the 2007/8'ish timeframe (non luan of course) and has since changed to another panel recently, I understand. Also non-luan and 100% "glass" of some sort like C-Tech. BTW C-Tech can be identified by sighting along a panel with your head against it. You will notice a slight vertical corduroy effect. That is C-Tech.

So yes this problem IS solved and IS positively identified.

Newmar IS also working with previous owners to re-skin their rigs under a co-pay arrangement.
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Old 02-19-2012, 01:52 PM   #3
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Ottffss, Thanks for the quick reply!

Great summary on literally hundreds of posts. So what I understand from your post is that Newmar models from 2007 and newer should not have this problem since they started using C Tech. Since you mention that they are now using another panel besides C tech do you know why they changed the panel Manfacturerers again?

thanks for your help.
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Old 02-19-2012, 01:57 PM   #4
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Newmar switched to C-Tech 2007/8'ish depending on the model. Essex was mid 2007. Other models later.

I don't know the new panel name/brand (actually I forgot the name because I didn't write it down when I saw the new panels being used on a re-skin up there several months ago). I also don't know if it is being used on all Nemwar model lines.

Perhaps someone at Camp Newmar can inquire???????
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