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Old 07-31-2013, 02:28 PM   #1
1 Rivet Member
Cherry Log , Georgia
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 12
Bates RV question

After close to a year of research and looking around on this forum ( great information here btw) we are close to pulling the string on a 2014 classic 31. .. Bates has one on order arriving in late October with just about everything we want or I can special order one for January delivery. Anyone's experiences with Bates both in sales and more important service, would be greatly appreciated..
Thank you

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Old 07-31-2013, 02:46 PM   #2
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1974 Argosy 20
2014 20' Flying Cloud
Kooskia , Idaho
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 4,591
For what it is worth, my dealer had my 2014 FC on order but not built yet. They told me they could change the specs on it up until the build date, and they did, allowing me to have the white countertops, ultraleather and regular oven stove I wanted.

So, they could, I dont know why any other dealer could not do the same thing, and you could get it in late October, not January.

I sure would ask anyway.

No experience with Bates, sorry.

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Old 07-31-2013, 02:50 PM   #3
1 Rivet Member
Cherry Log , Georgia
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 12
Thanks very much. Good to know.
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Old 07-31-2013, 03:37 PM   #4
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1986 31' Sovereign
Miami , Florida
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 1,909
Blog Entries: 13
Bates does not have a stellar reputation for service after the sale although I never got a chance to find out first hand.

I drove up there to look at a used '31 and the salesman really wasn't interested in me or making the sale. Guess the commission on a used unit is too puny.

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Old 07-31-2013, 03:54 PM   #5
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2011 27 FB International
sarasota , Florida
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 14
This just goes to show that everyone has their own opinion. Last month we bought a 2011 27 International FB. My wife & I had been looking/shopping for over 2 years to get our selfs educated about what we wanted/needed in a R/V. We visited both of the Bates R/V locations and felt that we were treated fairly and given the attention that we wanted. We actually saw our 27 International first on the web & then contacted Bates R/V & made an appointment to see our choice of AS. Although not as flashy & new as many R/V dealerships, our experience has been fine. As of yet, we have not had the need for any work from their service dept. But, I expect that when we get to that point the experience will be similar to any other service dept I have to deal with. Some good some a PIA. I would recommend Bates R/V.
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Old 07-31-2013, 03:54 PM   #6
3 Rivet Member
2014 30' Flying Cloud
Ponce Inlet , Florida
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 168
Ordered 30' Flying Cloud from Bates 2 weeks ago. Special Order with exactly what we wanted. Used 30' delivery slot in October. Can't speak to quality but their AS service bays were full. Our sales person knew his stuff and we got exactly what we wanted. Salesman knowledgeable and no hassle . Price was very competitive.

Hope this helps.
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Old 07-31-2013, 04:02 PM   #7
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2013 27' FB International
Beaufort , South Carolina
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 8
I have bought there and have first hand information, if you care to talk please just respond and we will figure out a way to discuss it.
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Old 07-31-2013, 04:18 PM   #8
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Cherry Log , Georgia
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 12
Thanks everyone. Every ones information and experiences help.
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Old 07-31-2013, 04:59 PM   #9
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2005 30' Safari
Houston Texas , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 476
I bought from bates new back in 2006. So so service but awesome price, nobody came close.
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Old 07-31-2013, 05:04 PM   #10
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2014 25' Flying Cloud
2012 20' Flying Cloud
Vero Beach , Florida
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 29
We bought a new 2012 FC 20 from Bates on July 1 this year. Our experience with them, from sales staff to warranty response and service has been very good. Bates supplied and installed an Equal-I-zer weight distribution hitch for our Toyota 4Runner. We also had a Fiamma bike rack added, in addition to the commissioning.

During our final inspection of the trailer, I noticed some deterioration of the clear coat finish on one wheel. Although they were not able to replace the wheel that day, they did contact Airstream and get written approval for the warranty replacement before we left the lot. I made a service appointment for July 23 to have the wheel replaced.

On our way back to Vero Beach that first day, we noticed that the weight distribution hitch setting was taking too much weight weight off of the rear drive tires on our Toyota 4Runner. I called Bates about this when we reached home and talked with Victor Jones, the General Manager. He was concerned about the way the hitch was working, and said that it needed to be adjusted. Since I have not had experience with this type of hitch before, I didn't feel confident that I would get the settings right. Victor drove to my house three days later, about a three hour trip each way, to make the hitch adjustments. I haven't experienced that kind of service on anything in a long, long time!

Looking through the Air Forum, I noticed that the early 2012 units had experienced problems with bad gaskets on their running lights. Sure enough, when I checked mine out, they all had water inside the lenses. I called Brenda, in service, emailed her pics of the running lights, and she scheduled the warranty replacement of all of the running lights to be completed when I returned for the new wheel on july 23.

I accept that everything isn't always perfect the first time around. What distinguishes my experience with Bates is that everyone I talked to when I had questions or problems went out of their way to help me, get an answer for me, or to deal with the issues we had.

At this point, color me a very pleased new Airstream owner. If Bates ever opens a Toyota dealership, I'll make the three hour drive Bates to buy that Tacoma I've been lusting for.
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Old 07-31-2013, 05:45 PM   #11
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2005 30' Safari
Houston Texas , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 476
Saves you "Mooola", you have not lived until you see Frank Bates in a cow suit...
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Old 07-31-2013, 05:55 PM   #12
2 Rivet Member
2011 27' FB Classic
Masontown , West Virginia
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 70
Our 2011 came from Bates and we were pleased with sales personnel and the deal - -all done online and with our trade-in fairly priced, sight unseen.

The only service experience was at pre-delivery and hitch installation - all was as expected with good attention to detail and our satisfaction.

Overall a good experience.
Bill & Dorothy Reeves
2011 27FB
2016 F250 6.2L
TAC # WV-2
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Old 07-31-2013, 06:00 PM   #13
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2011 25' FB Flying Cloud
Anywhere & , Everywhere
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 1,090
After seeing their "rock bottom prices" on the units they had at the Tampa RV Show last January suspect Colonial would beat them on price by a bunch based on my experience buying 2 trailers from Colonial.
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Old 07-31-2013, 06:43 PM   #14
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2012 25' FB International
Annapolis , Maryland
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 117
I had good experience negotiating over e-mail, picking up the trailer and getting a WD hitch installed. But... It's been over 3 months and I am still trying to get the paperwork out of them so I can register my trailer in MD. I am on temp plate #3 and it is hard to get then to call back or do anything. One more week and I'm calling the FL Attorney General's office.

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