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Old 11-17-2019, 09:06 AM   #21
JRTJH
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I'm going to go "way out on a limb" here and make some comments that I can't "prove to be fact" but rather, "are based on previous experience"....

Those who are old enough will remember when "plastic dash panels" first replaced steel dash panels in cars (around the mid 60's). How many of us remember those soft dash tops that cracked "almost as soon as the warranty expired" ???? If you look at any auto parts internet site, you can still buy "fuzzy dash blankets" to cover those dash panels to "prevent the sun from damaging them".... Since, the industry "improved the plastic formula" and cracking is less a problem in today's cars....

Now, let's move to the "mid 70's/early 80's" when "all cars could be ordered with an optional "vinyl top"... It really did nothing for the car's function, it was "just for eye appeal"... GM called it the "Landau package" and all the other manufacturers had their "pet names for that upgrade".... Again, the vinyl lasted "almost as long as the warranty".... Most of us that owned a car with a vinyl top still have a bottle of "some kind of junk" that we applied to try to keep it from cracking and disintegrating.... That's where Armor-All got its start BTW....

Now, apply this "try new stuff, find out it has problems, refine the process, evolve to different techniques and STOP USING THE FIRST EMULATION".....

I think (look back at the first sentence in this post) that the RV industry, in their "zeal to deliver what we want" started using DARCO.

This is the way I remember the evolution:

1. Wheelwells were lined with zinc coated steel sheets (tin)
2. That changed to spray on tar/bed liner
3. That changed to a plastic liner (similar to a truck bed liner)
4. That changed to an aluminum underbelly pan with aluminum wheelwell liners.
5. That changed to plastic sheeting (similar to a thick painter's drop cloth) stapled to the bottom of the trailer
6. That changed to DACOR underliner and is still used on some entry level trailers and in most wheelwells.
7. That changed to COROPLAST underliner and DACOR wheelwell liners...

At the same time, the flooring that used to be 1" marine plywood changed to 7/8" plywood, changed to 5/8" OSB/strand changed to "sandwich" flooring that was first 1/2" top layer of strand, 2"foam and 1/4" bottom strand, that is now either 1/4" top layer (or 2 layers of 1/8" luan), 1.5" foam and a 1/8" bottom layer, wrapped with DARCO to prevent water from rotting the structure....

Tow the "new and improved" floor over a gravel road and it doesn't take long to "fill the DARCO with pin-prick holes that will "wick water" the next time you tow during the rain.....

I see our future having more "evolution" and I'd suspect that as the industry gains "knowledge and experience" with current technology failures, we'll see different materials and different techniques as "trailer manufacturing evolves".... We can see that in the roof material too. First was a "tin roof" followed by a fiberglass or aluminum roof, followed by EPDM and now TPO (lighter than EPDM with the same characteristics)....

We ain't at the end of the line, but just like those plastic dashes and vinyl roofs, you don't see them on today's cars and I'd suspect you won't find DARCO wheelwells on "tomorrow's RV".....

In the meantime, buyers have a choice. Delay purchasing an RV "until they're perfect" or buy one today, deal with the growing pains and make memories (which are going to include costs to repair and replace things that break)...

Again, just my thoughts for what they're worth......
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Old 11-17-2019, 10:00 AM   #22
Fergie
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I have a 33ft. Passport ultra lite and it is definitely the flimsiest light weight I have ever owned. Roof and floor very soft. When you compare cost to other manufacturers, you would think Keystone would do a better job?
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Old 11-17-2019, 10:33 AM   #23
JRTJH
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fergie View Post
I have a 33ft. Passport ultra lite and it is definitely the flimsiest light weight I have ever owned. Roof and floor very soft. When you compare cost to other manufacturers, you would think Keystone would do a better job?
I'm not defending Keystone, heaven knows they build some "junk", but most are "industry competitive trailers at industry competitive prices".

When you compare a 5 year old trailer to a current model, there is a "flimsy feel" that goes along with that 600+ pound weight reduction off the older model. Current trailers do "feel lighter" than older trailers. That's because they are lighter.

All the "ultra-lite" trailers that I've walked inside of for the past 3 or 4 years seem to be "about the same in design and material use". I haven't walked into any brand 30'+ ultra-lite trailer that didn't feel "flimsy and bend in the middle or at both ends"....

I haven't seen that Keystone is much different than GD, Jayco, Winnebago, Forest River or any others. About the only difference that I see between any of the manufacturers is that they all "put the lipstick on the pig in different places"... Otherwise, they're all "the same pig underneath".... All are built with the same Lippert or NOCO frame, same tires (Jayco used all Endurance for 2 years, new models have some "different brands") all use the same appliances, same brand luan wallboard, some TPO roofing, same staples and adhesive, same workers (they move from plant to plant as they get laid off, fired or angry) and the same "cost constraints/engineering criteria/time to build model"

Comparing cost, GD is about $5K more, FR, Jayco about the same price, Winnebago is closer to GD than to Keystone in price structure... Keystone is among the cheapest in each "class offered".

Whether one brand is a "better value" than another brand???? Well, beauty lies in the eye of the beholder...
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Old 11-18-2019, 12:30 PM   #24
danf
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FishTx View Post
Is this a common problem with bullet series? I\u2019ve got a 2018 bullet premier
It's common. Other makes/models might have the same problem, but it's a common problem with Bullets. They didn't use butyl tape or caulking in the screws that screw on the apron. The Darco doesn't protect the underside of the floor. The darco also develops holes over the trailer frame where it is pinched between the frame and the trailer floor. There is no caulking there to keep dirt and water out. I would assume that Bullets in Arizona and places where it doesn't rain much may never see the problem. If you don't tow in rain, you may get away with not seeing the problem as long as you own your Bullet. But, I'd put money on almost all Bullets in wet places and towed in rain having bad floors or at least the start of developing a bad floor.

Knowing what I know now, if a new bullet dropped in my lap, I would caulk the apron and threshold screws. I would caulk underneath along where the floor is in contact with the frame rail. I would coat the bottom of the floor all along the wheel well area from the front of the camper to the rear of the camper with bed liner, undercoat, or similar. And then I would build inner wheel wells to keep spray of the floor.
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