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Old 02-17-2008, 02:19 AM   #1
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OK, this is a couple of years down the road but might as well start thinking about it now. If you are a full-timer, why did you pick a Winnebago product? Secondly, are you happy with your choice? I have been an Itasca owner for only two months but in that time I have contacted the factory to ask them questions an I am amazed at the level of service I am getting. It seems to me that being able to contact the factory when you have issues is a huge plus for a full-timer. Thoughts?
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Old 02-17-2008, 02:19 AM   #2
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OK, this is a couple of years down the road but might as well start thinking about it now. If you are a full-timer, why did you pick a Winnebago product? Secondly, are you happy with your choice? I have been an Itasca owner for only two months but in that time I have contacted the factory to ask them questions an I am amazed at the level of service I am getting. It seems to me that being able to contact the factory when you have issues is a huge plus for a full-timer. Thoughts?
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Old 02-17-2008, 03:06 AM   #3
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i bought a new Itasca Meridian in 2005 and plan to full time in it when our house sells. I like the factory/customer service too.
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Old 02-17-2008, 03:07 AM   #4
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Bruce:

I wish we were full timing, maybe some day soon. I am sure you will hear from the full timers on the forum. I do hear a lot of folks mention the excellent service they get at the Winnebago factory in Forest City. For full timers who might have more flexible schedules for travel, visits to the factory for service/repairs seem a popular option.

Both of our Winnebago coaches were purchased used but whenever we've contacted Winnebago for assistance, they have been most helpful. Also, I'm impressed with the technical information they provide on their website, even for previous model years.

While we would not discount some other manufacturers for a full-timing coach, Winnebago still would be high on our list.
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Old 02-17-2008, 03:10 AM   #5
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There are many opinions, however mine is that Winnie/Itasca makes a good product at a reasonable price compared to a lot of other manufacturers. Are there better coaches made? Sure. Are there worse coaches made? Sure.

Are new Winnie/Itasca without problems. No ,,some have more problems than others yet if you are patient and use sugar rather than vinegar they will get taken care, sometimes not without frustration tho. There are so many components on a MOHO, that every supplier has to produce a perfect product to be trouble free.

I have always found their response to questions acceptable, yet others will differ. Patience is the key to owning a motor home of any brand.

Good Luck and Safe Miles
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Old 02-17-2008, 04:32 AM   #6
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We lived on a sailboat for over six years and lived in our Horizon for over a year, so we have quite a bit of experience with non-traditional homes.

After three years of owning our Horizon, we are still fans of Winnebago in general and still quite pleased with our choice.

Winnebago's design, engineering and manufacturing is generally very, very good. There are mistakes made in the process for sure, but Winnie will step up and make it right. Having been on two in-depth personal plant tours, I liked what I saw. They automate what they can for consistency and precision. You don't see somebody with a tape measure and chalk laying out fabrication like we have seen at another manufacturer.

I believe Winnebago will be a 'survivor' in the RV business for the long term and have the leadership and resources necessary to survive our economic cycles.

So.. what constitutes a suitable coach for fulltiming?

There are lots of opinions about this, but my benchmarks have evolved into this:

- You need a CCC of at LEAST 3,000 pounds. This is the bare minimum. Really 3,500 should be be considered the minimum.

- The insulation (R value) needs to be appropriate for the kind of travel you are planning. In other words, if you plan on spending lots of time in 100 degree or 20 degree temperatures, look for a coach with lots of insulation. Travel Supreme is probably one of the best insulated coaches made and you can even have more added as an option. Our Horizon (and probably the entire Winne line) is really designed for moderate temperatures.

- Obviously you need to like the layout and DW must decide the galley design will work for her.

- You need easy access to storage. We have two basement storage slides and that makes it very easy to get to your stuff.

- You need adequate hanging locker space since you will want to have good clothes, coats, etc. hanging up and not folded.

- We love the washer/dryer and wouldn't be without it. Jane will make the trip to the laundromat to do the large loads, but sometimes that's just not feasible.

As a general comment about fulltiming - we loved it but we knew we didn't want to do it forever, so we had a post-fulltiming plan. Some people take to it readily and some don't. Be prepared for the next stage.

It is a great lifestyle and lots of fun!
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Old 02-17-2008, 07:20 AM   #7
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On the subject of factory response I have found that, like all companies, some tech service people are great, some good and some below average. I have had techs give me the barest response possible as if they wished I would just go away and others spend time digging in the computer to find the answer they know is there. But, above all, I am more than satisfied.
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Old 02-17-2008, 12:22 PM   #8
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We literally did years of research, planning toward fulltiming from the day we were married until 33 years later when we bought our first (and only so far) RV ...a Winnebago. Two years later, we moved into it fulltime. We stayed in a few different RVs over the years, inspected them all inside and out at countless shows and dealerships, and monitored lots of internet groups (one thing we noticed was fewer recent year Winnebago products for sale than other brands, in spite of Winnebago's high market share). Our eventual conclusion a couple of years before we bought was that Winnebago products are better constructed than most, and that in the price range you get much more quality for your money from Winnebago than with other mfgs. We also concluded that Winnebago owners are more satisfied than other mfg owners, both with build quality and with customer service.

We have been pleased to note many times since our purchase that we have items on our coach that others wish they had. Yes, we have had some problems (some repeating), but we have also had great support from Winnebago Owner Relations. I have contacted them many times with questions, both by phone and by email. They have ALWAYS been quite responsive, and in some cases have paid for repairs well after the warranty period was expired.

Bottom line is that we have never regretted buying a Winnebago product. If we had unlimited $$$ to spend, we might consider a Prevost or similar chassis (would really be tempted if Winnebago did a Prevost conversion!!). Meanwhile, we are quite happey to live in our Winnebago!
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Old 02-17-2008, 02:20 PM   #9
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by John_Canfield:

- The insulation (R value) needs to be appropriate for the kind of travel you are planning. In other words, if you plan on spending lots of time in 100 degree or 20 degree temperatures, look for a coach with lots of insulation. Travel Supreme is probably one of the best insulated coaches made and you can even have more added as an option. Our Horizon (and probably the entire Winne line) is really designed for moderate temperatures.

</div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I agree with all of John's bullets...and this one about insulation stood out in my opinion. Winnebago really needs to look at offering an insulation package, and maybe a Winter insulation package at least as an option.

Our next unit will be a unit that is MUCH better insulated than our current Voyage.
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Old 02-17-2008, 03:20 PM   #10
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We are now fulltiming in our 2004 Meridian 36G (for a whole 2 months!) While we do not yet have longterm experience fulltiming, I can say that we are very happy with the Winnebago product. I do much of my own work and having the technical documentation on line from Winne has been very helpful (as has this site!). One thing that I have noticed is that Winne seems to engineer things so they work. Parts fit well and systems are well designed. I especially like the One Source and power management system as well as the ease of dumping/flushing the tanks. I would, however, pay extra to get more insulation.

We are now considering upgrading to a new coach and after comparing several makes, I am leaning toward a new Tour.
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Old 02-17-2008, 03:43 PM   #11
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We will be fulltiming in our 32' Itasca in the next 5-7 months. Quality was a big issue for me. I too have had some issues with the rig, but both my dealer (service rep) and Winnie have been very good. Plus I believe that Winnie will be there far into the future. Look at the detailed schematics that are available at the top of this site, all made available by Winnie.

I have owned the Itasca for a little under 2 years, but if need be I would shop Winnie for a replacement. As John said, all these systems are made to work together, and do so very well. The customer service has been very good.

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Old 02-17-2008, 04:28 PM   #12
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We have been fulltime for almost 4 years. The last 2 years have been in an 05 Journey 32T and our 07 Vectra 40TD which we will have been in for about 10 months now.

We have had issues with both of them but because of Winnebagos great customer service we would recommend a Winnebago for full timing.

There are many great motor homes out there that will make a great fulltiming rig. Since you are in the Tampa area I would suggest going to Lazy Days and walk thru all of the motor homes there (you might of already done that). Take your time and sit in the ones your are interested in and stay there for an hour or two. Play with all the appliances, start the engine, run the air-conditioners, heaters, stereo system. It should feel like home to you. Don't compromise till you have looked at all available motorhomes, even if you have to travel several hundred miles to see another brand.

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Old 02-18-2008, 01:26 AM   #13
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Thanks folks. I am glad to see so many others are satisfied with the customer service and think that they are getting great value for the RV$$$.
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Old 02-18-2008, 02:34 AM   #14
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If you want to mingle with lots of Winnebago customers there is the Florida State Winnie Gators Rally in March in Orlando, Fl. Here is a link for more information.

http://www.winniegators.org/2008%20Rally.htm
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