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Old 07-26-2008, 11:12 PM   #15
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There's another thread speculating on Airstream wanting to form its own club. They've tried it before. I don't think they've given up on the idea and continuing to support the WBCCI would be counter-productive to that goal.

Out for coffee!
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Old 07-26-2008, 11:29 PM   #16
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altering how the company is involved in 2 rallies...

doesn't EQUAL no support for the wb'...

much of the company support isn't obvious or visible, but it's STILL there...

Originally Posted by Forrest View Post
...thread speculating on Airstream wanting to form its own club...
and i've not seen ANY recent thread here on a new company driven club (we speculated about this 2 year past here)...

there is a new thread asking about the need/potential for a new club,

but it makes no mention of being company driven.

are u privy to some info that suggests otherwise?


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Old 07-27-2008, 06:38 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by 2airishuman View Post
and i've not seen ANY recent thread here on a new company driven club (we speculated about this 2 year past here)...
2Air - I remember a thread that got started based on a question that was in a survey done by Airstream Co. last year. But it was at the SaveWally forum. Here's the link.
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Old 07-27-2008, 08:09 AM   #18
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If you read the reports in the latest RV Dealers Report, the RV industry as a whole is in pretty rough times. Sales are down, across the board, over 30% for this year and, Thor Industries of Jackson Center, Ohio, is down almost 20%.
Lay off? More like hemorrhaging~!
Is there a turn around, NOT for this year. In fact, it's fairly much said that this year is totally written off. They are looking to 2009 and beyond as the recovery period.
The sharp thinkers are say the money is in "USED PRODUCTS" market~!!
The bright side to all of this down turn?
The "camp grounds"~!! In fact, a few of the Class A manufacture are either buying into campgrounds or setting the camp ground networks up. What that tell you?
People are still camping, just staying closer to home~
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Old 07-27-2008, 08:32 AM   #19
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It doesn't take a PHD to know that the RV industry is in bad shape. I would sumbit that in part it is their own fault, though clearly this has been vastly amplified by the fact of high energy prices and the overall economic issues, including the financing issues.

What I mean by the RV industry is partly at fault (and I mean the whole industry, not just Airstream), is that for decades they have had extremely lackluster quality and we as consumers have simply accepted this fact and continue to buy.

The RV industry, like the domestic auto industry is going to find that foreign RV builders are more than willing to step up and put top quality products out. Take the Canadian company that makes Bigfoot RVs. These units have thermopane windows and most of the things that are incorporated into the mid to low high range RVs. Factory support from what I heard is second to none and they are at any Bigfoot gathering out there.

Add to the fact the US Dollar is weak, it's just money in the bank for the foreign RV companies as recovery starts to happen. Folks who are paying, in the best of hopes, $2.50/gallon for gas (post recovery) are not going to want to haul their RV to the dealer for a laundry list that is 3 pages long, as was the case with my 2004 Safari. Sure most of the issues were addressed, but I had to haul the Safari to JC and back on my dime because the dealer network was at best inconsistent in terms of exp, and skill sets.

These next few years are going to be very interesting. Thor isn't going anywhere, they have a somewhat diverse product line, but as we have already seen, many others are just closing their doors.

IMHO, it's going to get far worse around here before it gets any better and the Cadillac of RVs, Airstream, I would think may take a bit bigger hit as folks are being pretty tight fisted with any disposable income (let alone financing drying up for a percentage of the customer base that can't pay cash), making these RVs a niche market in these kinds of times....... I think we are just now seeing and hearing the beginning of a leaning out of the factory. If you read the corrosion thread, you'll find they are also following the written warranty to the letter and walking from any warranty claims in regard to corrosion. This last announcement of lack of participation at the Airstream rallies, is, IMHO, just another item in a growing list of what appears to be cost cutting measures to reduce the bleeding.
Computers manufactured by companies such as IBM, Compaq and millions of others are by far the most popular with about 70 million machines in use worldwide. Macintosh fans note that cockroaches are far more numerous than humans and that numbers alone do not denote a higher life form. -NY Times 11/91
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Old 07-27-2008, 11:11 AM   #20
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If everything we have was not paid for, I'd be thinking hard about not traveling. As it is,no worries & we'll head out in the fall, wintering in Arizona again. It will be interesting to see how many of you are able to get out, too.
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Old 07-27-2008, 05:04 PM   #21
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Makes me wonder just how many of my well-heeled customers and their $500K+ motor homes will be making the trip to FL this winter. It is my hope that they make it, but will probably leave the beasts on their RV lots (which in most cases they own) and either drive or fly back 'home' in the Spring.

I have several big RV rallies coming up in the next few months, and I think the attendance there will be a telling factor for the 'season' to come. OTOH, it just might increase my business, as I am fully mobile and can do all of the fixes for just about any component right at the RV site.
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Old 07-27-2008, 05:57 PM   #22
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We went for a week long travel and camp with our A/S the week of July third. We were in No. and So. Cal, Oregon and Nevada.

We saw five other Airstreams a double handfull of SOB and a ton of Marathons and other high end Moho's.

I think the folks plunking 1 to 3 mil. on a Moho can afford to enjoy the RV lifestyle.
I'd rather be boon docking in the desert.

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Old 07-27-2008, 07:29 PM   #23
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It's a shame if Airstream has started to scale back their attendance at the major rallies. At the International in Perry I was very impressed with their willingness to inspect and correct an electrical problem with my 2005 Bambi, at no charge, even though the warranty had expired two weeks prior. Their techs were top notch, and even took the time to answer several other questions I had about the trailer. (Or, perhaps they were enjoying the air conditioning. It was hot down there, people!)

I also had Fantastic Fan install a reverse switch in my fan, and '2air' is right about their tremendous customer service. In my opinion, they set the standard.

I was at a local state park campground here in Delaware a few weeks ago, and had a chance to speak to the Park Manager (and old friend). He said their campground attendance was significantly higher than last year, and confirmed that they were getting more business from locals than usual. In retrospect, the reason we were there is for a mini rally with friends from our former unit that was mostly comprised of members who didn't go to Bozeman because of the distance and travel/fuel expenses.
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Old 07-27-2008, 09:22 PM   #24
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You are dead on. When you spend the kind of money Airstream wants, you had better do a good job. I read the discussion items on this web site and it makes me think twice as to why I should take on the problems of a newer trailer.
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Old 07-27-2008, 10:49 PM   #25
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Sarasota, together with its neighbors to the north and south, Manatee County and Charlotte County, form the 7th-largest market in Florida. It is also Florida's third-fastest growing major market. With over 600,000 people, the Sarasota/Manatee/Charlotte area is one of the largest, most affluent markets in Florida. In the last 5 years, it has grown 4 times faster than the national average. The per capita retail sales are almost 20% above the national average. It has a strong base of retirement age people, about a third of the population, but the fastest-growing segment of the market is middle-aged adults and their children. It has approximately 1/4 the population of the Tampa/St. Petersburg area.Its a work load enough for any other to be indulged in it, so Airstream Plant employees has a reason to no longer work with them !!

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Old 07-28-2008, 06:36 AM   #26
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To get this thread back on track..... The decision of Airstream as a company to discontinue it's attendance at the two major rallies a year is not a big surprise no matter how you look at it. First, the Airstream Company did not start the WBCCI, so they are not jumping ship. Of course the Airstream Company has been a hugh supporter of the club and I am sure they will continue to do so. I am sure Larry and Bob made this very tough decision based on the economy. Getting the parts truck to a rally location is getting more and more expensive everyday. Having some of their best techs on site is also not only expensive but places a strain on the staff at the plant. From a business owners point of view and the present condition of the RV industry as a whole it is a smart move. I too am not happy about it but if it will help the Airstream Company survive the current economy so be it.
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Old 07-28-2008, 07:07 AM   #27
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it might help if the factory started charging a nominal fee for repairs to defray the expenses. it would be a win-win situation for everyone.
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Old 07-29-2008, 10:02 PM   #28
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I for one would hate to see the factory store discontinued at the rallies. At Bozeman we were in the store several times and purchased items that I not know that I needed them until I saw them on the table. Every time we were there they were alway busy. We purchased over $200 in merchandise.

I personally know several friends with new AS's and they have had their share of issues with their units. One had a door that did not fit and you could see day light through the cracks. That's sad when you consider that it was a new 2007 model and probably cost over $40,000. These are quality control problems that should have been adressed before the unit was shipped to the dealer.

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