Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Congrats and best of luck with it. Regarding Open Range being bought by Jayco did you know Jayco was bought by Thor which of course also owns Keystone. Really it come down to 2 major corporations owning most of the rv factories Forest River or Thor, Rev corp. makes some motorhomes then some smaller companies that are trying to survive. Camper looks very roomy and can't wait to see the bar!!!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, dblr....Rennie said:

Congrats and best of luck with it. Regarding Open Range being bought by Jayco did you know Jayco was bought by Thor which of course also owns Keystone. Really it come down to 2 major corporations owning most of the rv factories...

Thanks!

Yeah it's crazy that there are all these brands out there that are mostly all made by 2 companies.  What's stranger still is there still seem to be wide swings in quality between some of them, but I imagine much of that is tied to the price point they're selling at.  Our hybrid was a Kodiak, made by Thor. It was an awesome little camper in the early days of hybrids. The first time we took it to the Fort we were just about the only hybrid in the place. We stayed in 500 and were surrounded by pricey Class As and our neighbors kept coming by asking if they could see inside.  LOL!  We kept it for 5 years and never had a single problem - and we spent weeks at a time in it with 3 dogs!  🙂

When we bought our Open Range they were still a small independent company and did things differently than a lot of others - a big reason we bought it. Once they got swallowed up things changed (as they do) and unfortunately not so much for the better.

Keeping our fingers crossed with this one.  The quality definitely seemed better than some similar ones we looked at, so we're hopeful.  I'll definitely share bar pics once it's built/installed!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Congratulations on the trailer.

I think a lot of the quality issues are related to paying the workers on a piece rate. It encourages the folks to get done as quickly as they can so they can leave work and go do something else. I'm not sure of when the manufacturers switched over from hourly rates but folks I've talked to in the industry say this is when they noticed a change in build quality. I also think we as RV owners are part of the problem as well. Too many times things that should be charged back to the manufacturers as warranty work we end up doing ourselves for whatever reason. Since the executives don't see the real costs they have no reason to believe anything other than the products are performing well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, keith_h said:

Congratulations on the trailer.

I think a lot of the quality issues are related to paying the workers on a piece rate. It encourages the folks to get done as quickly as they can so they can leave work and go do something else. I'm not sure of when the manufacturers switched over from hourly rates but folks I've talked to in the industry say this is when they noticed a change in build quality. I also think we as RV owners are part of the problem as well. Too many times things that should be charged back to the manufacturers as warranty work we end up doing ourselves for whatever reason. Since the executives don't see the real costs they have no reason to believe anything other than the products are performing well.

Thanks!

Really interesting points and I can see how both would lead to less emphasis on quality.  DH was a car guy for 25+ years and sold warranties for most of them. He gets where/when warranties make sense, and he also knows the markup on them. This is the first time we haven't gotten an extended warranty on a new car or camper (eek).  Big reason is that we're not planning to keep this camper forever, so we didn't feel we wanted/needed the "hefty" options (also I really don't want you spraying every surface in my camper with some chemical so that I can allegedly clean up a spill easier - yuck), but DH's rationale for not even wanting the basic extended was... "even if all of the things that are covered by the basic warranty all broke, I could fix them myself for less than the cost of the warranty."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
49 minutes ago, BradyBzLyn...Mo said:

Thanks!

Really interesting points and I can see how both would lead to less emphasis on quality.  DH was a car guy for 25+ years and sold warranties for most of them. He gets where/when warranties make sense, and he also knows the markup on them. This is the first time we haven't gotten an extended warranty on a new car or camper (eek).  Big reason is that we're not planning to keep this camper forever, so we didn't feel we wanted/needed the "hefty" options (also I really don't want you spraying every surface in my camper with some chemical so that I can allegedly clean up a spill easier - yuck), but DH's rationale for not even wanting the basic extended was... "even if all of the things that are covered by the basic warranty all broke, I could fix them myself for less than the cost of the warranty."

And based on the majority of posts on this site dealing with warranties, a heck of a lot quicker!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Travisma said:

And based on the majority of posts on this site dealing with warranties, a heck of a lot quicker!

Indeed!!

It was a concern for us that this dealer is 3+ hours away from us, but then we found out they have another dealership only an hour away, and we can use them if we need to.

Here's hoping we don't!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

the smaller and fewer systems on a camper, the less the extended warranty makes sense. My little unit, only the A/C, Fridge, and overhead fan would be covered by an extended warranty. The cost of that warranty was more than buying those units as replacements, so we most definitely passed. Plus the warranty was only five years. At 12 years, those items all still work. If any of those units die, we'll just buy replacements.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A lot of people say take the money that you would pay for the extended warranty and put it away for the repairs later, plus less of a fight trying to get them to cover the repair.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Congrats Mo and Happy Travels with the new rig.

As to JAYCO and HIGHLAND RIDGE (formerly OPEN RANGE) they are still run as independent companies  JAYCO owns STARCRAFT too and has since 1992 when STARCRAFT went bankrupt. Actually Lloyd (Jay) Bontrager started our as an Engineer at STARCRAFT before he and his wife started JAYCO. THOR primarily provided an infusion of operating capital. Wilbur Bontrager (son of the JAYCO founder) retired last year and a fellow from THOR did get hired as COO, but he just got released and Derald Bontrager took back full rein he is now ,COO, PRES and CEO. The family never did relinquish control.  The quality issues people see today are primarily due to the lack of qualified employees and the high demand for RV's. JAYCO produces over 40,000 rigs ia year. Last year the Elkhart area was short over 10,000 employees for the RV industry.  One of the big problems was the fact so many failed the drug tests. 

In case anyone's interested here's a link to JAYCO's 50th anniversary synopsis.  https://rvfta.com/podcast/jaycos-50th-anniversary

And yes I'm a little prejudiced, everything Linda and I have  purchased since 1973  was a STARCRAFT or JAYCO, 9 for us and 3 for the kids.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Grumpy, you are so right about how Jayco and StarCraft were one of the better built units but at last years Hershey show we were looking at their Pinnacle line and were very disappointed in what we saw, now everything looked very nice but we felt the wall that would sway back and forth to the bathroom kind of made us nervous, friends are looking for a full time 5th wheel so that's what drew us to them. Also you are correct in the lack of quality workers in the whole sector which reflects the quality coming out of the whole industry. Glad to hear you had great luck in all of your units we had a StarCraft pop-up and a Jayco 5th wheel and both served us well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/9/2019 at 6:51 AM, dblr....Rennie said:

Congrats and best of luck with it. Regarding Open Range being bought by Jayco did you know Jayco was bought by Thor which of course also owns Keystone. Really it come down to 2 major corporations owning most of the rv factories Forest River or Thor, Rev corp. makes some motorhomes then some smaller companies that are trying to survive.

Yep... which is probably why no particular "manufacturer" is overly concerned, if they put out junk. 

Mo... congrats on the camper!!  Enjoy!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/9/2019 at 9:08 PM, mouseketab.....Carol said:

At 12 years, those items all still work.

We emptied out the camper today and I have to say, I know we've been careful about taking care of it, but all emptied and cleaned out it looks pretty darned good for an almost 10 year old camper! The worst "damage" is that the strings along the bottom of a few of the curtains dried out and broke, but they're easily replaceable.  And yes, every single thing still works perfectly - fridge, stove, a/c...  Not sure if we were just lucky or it really was that good a unit.

On 5/10/2019 at 6:17 AM, dblr....Rennie said:

A lot of people say take the money that you would pay for the extended warranty and put it away for the repairs later, plus less of a fight trying to get them to cover the repair.

I like that idea.

23 hours ago, Grumpy and Grandma said:

As to JAYCO and HIGHLAND RIDGE (formerly OPEN RANGE) they are still run as independent companies ...The quality issues people see today are primarily due to the lack of qualified employees and the high demand for RV's. JAYCO produces over 40,000 rigs ia year. Last year the Elkhart area was short over 10,000 employees for the RV industry...

Very interesting, but it makes sense!  

13 hours ago, twiceblessed....nacole said:

Mo... congrats on the camper!!  Enjoy!!

Thanks!  Have to say we were a little sad cleaning out the old one today, we had a LOT of great times in it, but I'm looking forward to something new.

Oh and the bar has been carefully removed and is ready to be refit to the new camper.  Now *that* thing has a lot of miles on it.  It was in the first Open Range we bought and then rolled over in an accident, so it's over 10 years old. It amazingly survived the crash with just a small chip in the front trim (DH built that thing to last) and it will live on in a slightly shorter version in the new camper.

Tomorrow DH is re-installing the jack knife couch and bunk that came with the camper originally.  Both are brand new, never been used.  🙂

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sounds like someone will get a very good used trailer down the road, are you trading it in or selling outright? When we traded our Cedar Creek 5th wheel in on our River Stone Legacy they sold it in less then 3 days and the new owners even tracked my wife down on Facebook to thanks us for taking such great care of their new to them camper.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/12/2019 at 5:51 AM, dblr....Rennie said:

Sounds like someone will get a very good used trailer down the road, are you trading it in or selling outright? When we traded our Cedar Creek 5th wheel in on our River Stone Legacy they sold it in less then 3 days and the new owners even tracked my wife down on Facebook to thanks us for taking such great care of their new to them camper.

That's awesome.

We're trading it.  It's a fairly big, heavy, nearly 10 year old camper.  I'm ok with letting the dealer find a new home for it.   But along those lines, my in laws just bought a new-to-them camper and sold their 7+ year old hybrid.  They got a few hundred more than one dealer would have given them on a trade (a couple of dealers didn't even want it) and it sold in less than a week. 🙂

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We traded our previous trailer as I didn't want to deal with a private sale and having two trailers in our driveway until it sold. Of course this is  guess but based on previous used sales of our old trailer model and the price the dealer asked for it on their lot we might have been able to sell it for $500 over the trade in price. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×