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Old 07-24-2015, 10:47 AM   #1
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1961 22' Flying Cloud
Oklahoma City , Oklahoma
Join Date: Oct 2014
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Something Crappy that Airstream did

I live in OKC. I went to Griffith RV to schedule some work. They have been the authorized Airstream repair center for 26 years. I was informed that Airstream just pulled their agreement with them because the do not sell Airstreams they only service them. We have a new Airstream dealer in town so they didn't need him anymore. He is closing his doors because all he has ever worked on is Airstreams and now he can't even get parts. What a crappy thing to do to someone that has been loyal to Airstream for 26 years.

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Old 07-24-2015, 10:58 AM   #2
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1991 34' Excella
Princeton , New Jersey
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Airstream as a company has not quite caught up to today's marketing and customer service standards. They are affiliating themselves with what one can only describe as used car lots and have no idea of current trend in web site marketing let along the value of their brand. Harley Davidson makes more on the clothes and accessorizes then the sale of the bikes yet Airstream, with a naturally loyal clientele, won't even consider selling accessorizes.

If I remember right the last marketing employee they hired had a career in the sale of underware.

2004 Excursion 4x4
1991 34 ft. Excella +220,000 miles, new laminated flooring, new upholstery, new 3200 lbs axles

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Old 07-24-2015, 11:11 AM   #3
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Wichita Falls , Texas
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Why doesn't he continue his business anyway? There are private Airstream restoration and repair services around the country. How do they obtain parts? His website states he repairs any brand.

Maybe he could get that dealership to hire him. Owning a small business is rough work. Just going to a job to work on Airstreams and get benefits then come home is much less stressful.

Still Airstream shouldn't have cut him off like that. There should be enough business to go around. Appears Airstream is more interested in sales than service so why cut him off? Guess his shop as shown on his website is not glamorous looking enough for Airstream

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Old 07-24-2015, 11:27 AM   #4
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Oswego , Illinois
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There may be more to the story. I have no Idea how strong the RV dealer associations are, but there are negotiations for franchise agreements that are very complicated....very much like union agreements.

A dealer Sales AND Service agreement is probably required. If a business has an expiring Service agreement, but the new legalize may require Sales AND Service. Was this Gentleman offered a Sales agreement and he didn't want to or have the means to finance a new AS inventory??/ Who knows, but I wouldn't just assign blame without all the facts, whch we will never have.

"If the women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy." - Red Green
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Old 07-24-2015, 11:57 AM   #5
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2012 25' Flying Cloud
Battle Lake , Minnesota
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We did business (and still do) with a former dealer who had kept his authorized service with Airstream before they cut him loose. The place is rough, really rough looking but the mechanic knows what he's doing. I value that over shop appearance. The story goes he lost his authorized service because of questionable warranty charges to Airstream, and that manager is gone.

I don't like the new dealership service in town. The pretty girl greets you at the service entrance, who passes you to a service writer who does not care or know enough to discuss your problem. The mechanics are behind closed doors and inaccessible. Small wonder why so many problems are not fixed on the first visit.

Car dealers have been doing this for years now. You are often completely isolated from the guy/gal doing the work. Realizing with some customers that's a good thing.
Doug and Cheryl
2012 FC RB, Michelin 16, ProPride 1400
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Old 07-24-2015, 01:29 PM   #6
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Hot Springs , Arkansas
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Some of the best mechanical artisans are independent. Franchise fees, Inventory quotas, all add up to it's not worth the stress.

It's easier to find a good Heart Surgeon than an exceptional Mechanic, whatever the discipline.
If Airstream Inc. is resting on Wallys achievements, they will go into decline. How many threads have there been lately with comments on quality issues?

I don't care who you are or what you do, You have to take care of your people from the greatest to the very least. All and each just the same. It was the "little people" that put me at the top. Loyalty and filial relationships are becoming a thing of the past.
As long as the independent fella keeps up on current models and methods, why not keep him as an ambassador?
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Old 07-24-2015, 02:22 PM   #7
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Augusta , Kansas
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We had Griffiths install a new door on our 2011 FC. Absolutely fabulous work and nice people. Easy to deal with (insurance claim). We have been to a couple of certified dealers with small adjustments... Shoddy work and actually damaged ( cosmetic) skin of our trailer. I would take my camper to Griffiths in OKC for anything and know it was done correctly. I hope they work out a solution to stay in business. If not, they will be missed.
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Old 07-24-2015, 04:25 PM   #8
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Tuttle , Oklahoma
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No, please say it's not true! Griffith is the best. Found the problem with my old trailer and fixed it when no one else could. Nice folks, too.
Haven't heard of an Airstream dealer in this state.
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Old 07-24-2015, 04:59 PM   #9
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Tulsa , Oklahoma
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My experience with successor

I don't know anything about past history, but I bought my 2016 Grand Tour from Leisure Time RV in OKC. They were good to deal with, serious about Airstream (they sent a crew to factory for several days to learn more Bout them). I have a feeling they will be in the "good" category of dealers.
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Old 07-24-2015, 05:21 PM   #10
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Biloxi , Mississippi
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There is always at least two sides to every story. Reserving judgement until the rest of the story is revealed.

Do you know what a learning experience is? A learning experience is one of those things that says "You know that thing that you just did? Don't do that."
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Old 07-24-2015, 06:46 PM   #11
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Garden Valley , Idaho
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Even you or I can order parts from Airstream, so that shouldn't keep him from repairing Airstreams. He could find a way to make it work, even if it was running his parts orders through another dealer. Maybe his credit wasn't up to snuff.
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Old 07-25-2015, 11:40 AM   #12
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2000 30' Excella
Greeneville , Tennessee
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I needed new decals for my Excella. Airstream would tell me what I needed but would not sell directly to me. I had to go through a dealer. I paid the dealer via PayPal and he placed the order and the decals were drop shipped directly to me. This was a very easy transaction, I guess they just want to favor their dealerships.
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Old 07-25-2015, 12:00 PM   #13
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Not sure who you talked too but You can order and buy decals directly from their store in Jackson Center. I bought a couple for my Safari.

Do you know what a learning experience is? A learning experience is one of those things that says "You know that thing that you just did? Don't do that."
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Old 07-25-2015, 12:27 PM   #14
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1985 25' Sovereign
Okc , Oklahoma
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Angry Airstream behavior

Tom tried to work something out with Leisure Tiimes. He Would have to go to them to order parts, I'd problem found with shipment, damage, etc., would have to go back through LT for resolution , etc. He was willing but it got to be too much. I like others am very sorry to see him close up shop. You are not going to replace his expertise, skill and craftsmanship by sending a bunch to receive overnight training.

Lee Johnson
Corriente de Aire
85 Soverign
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