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Old 01-19-2007, 03:48 PM   #1
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I visited the Tampa RV show yesterday (WOW -- what a show) to look at new coaches and in talking with a competitor to Winnie, learned that the Winnebago roof (on the Tour coach) was only about 3.5 inches thick and that much of this thickness was taken up by the ducts for the A/C leaving little insulation space. The competitor showed a 6" thick roof, but did use roof air systems.

Is this actually correct? If so, does it matter?

I was very impressed with the fit and finish of the Winnebago product and except for this issue, am inclined in their direction.

Many thanks

Rick
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Old 01-19-2007, 03:48 PM   #2
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I visited the Tampa RV show yesterday (WOW -- what a show) to look at new coaches and in talking with a competitor to Winnie, learned that the Winnebago roof (on the Tour coach) was only about 3.5 inches thick and that much of this thickness was taken up by the ducts for the A/C leaving little insulation space. The competitor showed a 6" thick roof, but did use roof air systems.

Is this actually correct? If so, does it matter?

I was very impressed with the fit and finish of the Winnebago product and except for this issue, am inclined in their direction.

Many thanks

Rick
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Old 01-19-2007, 03:57 PM   #3
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If you want to see how a competitors roof is built go to web site "welcometonewmarcorp.com" and look in the construction section and they will explain how their coach is built.
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Old 01-19-2007, 05:02 PM   #4
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I guess you can always make the argument that 'more is better.' I can only say that I walk around on the roof of my rig and there has not been a problem...seems sturdy enough.
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Old 01-19-2007, 05:19 PM   #5
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So, when researching a coach the one person you believe is a competitor's salesman. I am having trouble with this thought. Have you stopped to think just how thick 3.5 inches is?
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Old 01-19-2007, 05:21 PM   #6
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Hi Rick,

I would be curious on what other manufacture you are looking at. I have had Monaco, Fleetwood and now Winnebago and I think for the money, at least so far, the Winnebago is the best bang for the buck. Every brand has a selling point that a good salesman will jump on. You are in the right spot for good information on Winnebago. I have not had a problem with the roof and the basement air/heat works great. Good luck and happy travels.

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Old 01-19-2007, 05:36 PM   #7
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Rick - the two A/C ducts are maybe six or eight inches wide. Other manufacturers also duct roof mount A/Cs. Like Gary (smlranger) says, the roof is plenty sturdy to walk on.

Don't get hung up on only one element or attribute of the design or execution - consider the entire package. Do a lot of research and tire kicking; look inside of cabinets, under counters, look at specifications, etc. No coach had exactly every feature and attribute when we were shopping - there are a lot of good coaches out there but the Horizon came closest to meeting our most important expectations.
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Old 01-19-2007, 06:01 PM   #8
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Rick

Did the "competitor" rep tell you that one test Winnebago does of their design is to turn one upside down and drop it on its roof to test structural integrity? ...and does his mfg do a comparable test?

Like the others said ...salesmen will say just about anything about competitor's rigs. In my experience, they don't know all that much about the brand they are selling, much less a competitor's brand...
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Old 01-20-2007, 06:49 AM   #9
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I'm glad Paul brought up the roof test. A lot of RV companies rely on the walls and roof to add to the structural integrity. If you have a chance ask the Winnie dealer for the DVD it really does a great job explaining how they are built - I think some or all of the DVD can be viewed on their website too.
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Old 01-20-2007, 04:33 PM   #10
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I greatly appreciate your responses and agree -- I was an old salesman, so am more than a bit skeptical! The "competitor" I mentioned was Monaco Coach who seems to make a nice rig as well, so thought I would check the claim out.

I have looked at quite a few coaches and keep coming back to Winnebago for the overall fit and finish as well as the feature rich environment. The other thing I really like is their engineering expertise.

Thanks again

Rick
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Old 01-21-2007, 07:32 AM   #11
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Winnebago builds one of the sturdiest rigs on the market. They spend a lot of time and effort of structural integrity. They are also the only company that does perform a "crash test" on their rigs, I think that says a lot.
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Old 01-21-2007, 11:18 AM   #12
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While most have stated the obvious fact about the "sturdiness" of the Winnebago roof, the insulating factor is one of the weakest I have seen. I've burnt my hand feeling on the edge of the ceiling where the roof attaches to the walls...there is absolutely no insulation in that area. The ductwork takes away from the insulating factor also....
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Old 01-30-2007, 06:52 PM   #13
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I think the winnebago roof is probably built stronger than most. I just wish it had more insulation for heat and cooling and most of all for sound. In a hard rain the noise about drives us out. The same rain in some of the monaco coaches I have been in will be very hard to even hear.
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Old 01-30-2007, 08:20 PM   #14
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I certainly agree with the extreme lack of roof insulation. On a 25-35 degree night the wall where it joins the ceiling feels really cold to the touch and the wall and ceiling above the shower will sweat during a hot shower. I never really thought about the cause of this but from the above postings I can understand now. I don't understand how Winnebago can be above average in so many places and literally screw up in others. Either they have some very junior engineers or someone was asleep when decisions were made. Six munths ago I cudnt evan spill injeneer and now I air wun.
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Old 01-31-2007, 02:09 PM   #15
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For what it's worth...just dropped my rig off at the dealer in Nashville who sells Winnebago, Monaco, Fleetwood and I think there was one other. Although I'm not quite sure yet how I'm going to feel about their customer service...one comment the service manager made in reference to the Winnebago was that they are best built rigs they deal with and if he had any say in the matter, Winnebago coaches would be all that they would sell. Then he said he's not really allowed to say that out loud.
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Old 01-31-2007, 02:33 PM   #16
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Ron the comments you got from your dealer echoed some comments I have, and not from the sales staff. This is my third purchase from my dealer and they know me well enough to know my expectations. When one of the service guys said to me "trust me you'll be much happier with a Winnebago" that meant a lot to me, enough that I opted not to buy the Damon.
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Old 01-31-2007, 03:18 PM   #17
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I love the sound of the rain on my roof -- real cozy.

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Old 02-01-2007, 03:53 AM   #18
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Like most have said, every coach has it's own set of compromises.

Like John Canfield, our "due diligence" included gaining an understanding not only of how the coach was assembled, but how it was engineered. We believe that the total value of the coach is known 10 years later.

Is it still on the road?

Can you still get parts?

Is every wire numbered?

What about a catastrophic accident? Can they build a whole new sidewall, graphics and all, and just disconnect the old broken one, remove it and lock in an exact replacement?

Winnie can, and I have seen it done several times. It's amazing.

Are they insulated as well as others? H*ll no. As others point out, it's not a strong point.

For us, the engineering, manufacturing and support well after the sale made the difference.

How many 20- 30 year old Motorhomes from ANY other manufacturer do you regularly see still on the road?

If you have time, make the trip to Forest City, IA and schedule (before hand) a "VIP" plant tour.

For us, it's the best compromise.

Good luck, and hope this helps.
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Old 02-01-2007, 06:19 PM   #19
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If the roof is 3.5 inches thick there is minimal insulation between the roof and the cold air flowing (on A/C) through the ductwork. If you check the temp of the air coming out of the ducts in the middle of a blazing hot august afternoon and later that evening when the sun is not shining on the roof you will know just how the small amount of insulation over the ducts effects your camper. I am considering adding a roof ac in place of the roof vent in my kitchen area so that my coach will be "liveable" in the afternoon. Oh I have heard all the crap from Winnebago and Coleman. Coleman says ac is working correctly (inlet and outlet temps within specs) and Winnebago says its not there problem. If the AC temps are good, 18 degree difference during the day and 28 at night, then why does my coach go from 72 in the morning to 83 in the afternoon with the ac running continuously? Oh both compressors are working and if I park under trees (shade) I do not have this problem.
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Old 02-01-2007, 06:31 PM   #20
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Bill, what outside temperatures are you referring to? So far, I've traveled in 98 degree weather and able to keep the coach pretty comfortable. I'm wondering if your ac system is not operating at full capacity and may be in need of service/recharging?
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