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Old 06-01-2018, 10:55 AM   #1
mtlakejim
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Who are the buyers for Camping World

I have tried several times to talk to engineers and designers at Montana to no avail. The customer service people SAY they will pass on your contact information but it never happens. Likewise, I have tried to get thru to the 5th wheel purchase agents at Camping World with no luck.

Main reason I wanted to get hold of the purchase agents is that they are the real customers for the manufacturers and as such get listened too. Unlike the end customers that carry virtually no weight with builders.

Oddly I had some suggestions on how to improve their sales of some of the units that were related to quality control on some obvious areas. For instance, my unit had unsightly expanding foam sticking out everywhere. I almost decided not to buy the unit out of concern for the quality of the build just based on that. Sadly it would have been a very easy quality control fix to have the guys spraying the foam take a gloved hand, cardboard or putty knife to smooth down the exposed foam for a clean appearance (would have taken all of 2 seconds while foam was still soft). There were several other appearance issues that would have made a BIG difference as well but you get the picture....

Likewise there are some floor plan ideas that I had (remember I am the guy that did in fact draw out the basement garage design for SOB at the Dallas show that became the HC 381TH eventually). Unfortunately no one wants to listen now......
 
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Old 06-01-2018, 12:09 PM   #2
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James … 30 years ago would have been your heyday … fast forward to 2018. Just think of all the kooks a design dept at a manufacturer would have to wade thru should they open up to ideas … think of how it's decided who gets a patent right and royalties for the good stuff … think of how it's decided who gets named in a law suite should some idea go sour after it's put into production. We used to have an employee suggestion unit at work in the 80's. Workers got paid a calculated sum for their ideas to improve production depending on production rate and how much it cost to implement their suggestions spread out over 3 years. All gone … too many lawsuits over the almighty dollar. I loosely agree with your intent here, I just think today's way the world churns won't support it.
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Old 06-01-2018, 01:47 PM   #3
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With RV sales numbers increasing every year they already think they know it all.
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Old 06-01-2018, 01:56 PM   #4
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I have tried several times to talk to engineers and designers at Montana to no avail. The customer service people SAY they will pass on your contact information but it never happens. Likewise, I have tried to get thru to the 5th wheel purchase agents at Camping World with no luck.

Main reason I wanted to get hold of the purchase agents is that they are the real customers for the manufacturers and as such get listened too. Unlike the end customers that carry virtually no weight with builders.

Oddly I had some suggestions on how to improve their sales of some of the units that were related to quality control on some obvious areas. For instance, my unit had unsightly expanding foam sticking out everywhere. I almost decided not to buy the unit out of concern for the quality of the build just based on that. Sadly it would have been a very easy quality control fix to have the guys spraying the foam take a gloved hand, cardboard or putty knife to smooth down the exposed foam for a clean appearance (would have taken all of 2 seconds while foam was still soft). There were several other appearance issues that would have made a BIG difference as well but you get the picture....

Likewise there are some floor plan ideas that I had (remember I am the guy that did in fact draw out the basement garage design for SOB at the Dallas show that became the HC 381TH eventually). Unfortunately no one wants to listen now......

You would like to think an extra 90 seconds per unit taking care of the foam would be something they are interested in. Neither the company or the employees care enough to spend the time.
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Old 06-01-2018, 02:24 PM   #5
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All about profit … 2 minutes per unit (.03 hr) times a very conservative company labor cost (wages, ins, benefits, perishable items to sustain workforce) of $50 hr times 10,000 units a year times say 20 consumer ideas per unit on quality comes out to $300,000 a year. I've worked on assembly lines before as have some of you. After years of doing the same thing didn't you become a bit numb to it all?
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Old 06-01-2018, 02:34 PM   #6
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Is it just me or does anyone else think Jim would be a hoot on a factory tour?
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Old 06-01-2018, 02:37 PM   #7
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"Katie bar the doors"!
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Old 06-01-2018, 02:52 PM   #8
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We get people all the time who suggest ways to improve the products we make or new products. Very seldom can we use their ideas. They are way to expensive or simply wont work. If we used all of their ideas we would wind up with products so expensive no one could buy them.
I’m not saying Montana couldn’t use this idea but if they used them all there would be no MOC Montana campers would be so expensive no one could afford them. I’m sure they get hundreds of ideas on what people would like them to do.
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Old 06-01-2018, 02:59 PM   #9
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Can they just not strip out all of the screws.
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Old 06-01-2018, 04:39 PM   #10
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With sales growing like this, they will not be interested in outside input.
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Old 06-01-2018, 05:08 PM   #11
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We get people all the time who suggest ways to improve the products we make or new products. Very seldom can we use their ideas. They are way to expensive or simply wont work. If we used all of their ideas we would wind up with products so expensive no one could buy them.
Iím not saying Montana couldnít use this idea but if they used them all there would be no MOC Montana campers would be so expensive no one could afford them. Iím sure they get hundreds of ideas on what people would like them to do.
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As I have said before.If they built a Rv the way I think it should be built it would be to expensive to purchase and to heavy to pull.
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Old 06-02-2018, 01:44 AM   #12
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All about profit … 2 minutes per unit (.03 hr) times a very conservative company labor cost (wages, ins, benefits, perishable items to sustain workforce) of $50 hr times 10,000 units a year times say 20 consumer ideas per unit on quality comes out to $300,000 a year. I've worked on assembly lines before as have some of you. After years of doing the same thing didn't you become a bit numb to it all?
The math is right, but it's based on hypotheticals. $50/hr? 10k units a year? Sounds reasonable. Who can argue? But the bottom line is correct. We ALL become numb to the process after years of performing our jobs. This is what the bean-counters are hired for. Good post.
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Old 06-02-2018, 03:34 AM   #13
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and the numb part is not just on the assembly line.
i work for a logistics company. and it is rampet here also. in the warehouse, front office, computer center. and in the trucks.
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Old 06-02-2018, 11:01 AM   #14
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Sorry to say, but it seems the younger generations do not have the work ethic to perform their jobs with pride. They seem to want to do as little as possible for their pay. End result is crappy products. It has to start from the top and be taught . You could have the best quality parts in the world, but if the person doing the assembly doesn't give a darn for anything except quitting time, then you get junk. This is also the problem in the service side of it also.
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Old 06-02-2018, 12:09 PM   #15
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I must live in a different world. We worked at Disney world during our Florida winter stays and the young people we worked with were hard workers most of them seasonal working their way through school. Perhaps we know the wrong young people as we see hard working young folks trying to improve themselves.

We have been through I think every RV manufacturer assembly line in the Elkhart area and we see people working hard under what I consider harsh conditions.

IMO the worker is not at fault for poor quality or workmanship the company sets the rules and controls the work environment. The worker assembles the RV with parts provided by the vendors according to rules set by the manufacturer.
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Old 06-02-2018, 02:11 PM   #16
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Can they just not strip out all of the screws.
Their answer to that is the staples and look how well that turns out.
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Old 06-02-2018, 02:14 PM   #17
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.

IMO the worker is not at fault for poor quality or workmanship the company sets the rules and controls the work environment. The worker assembles the RV with parts provided by the vendors according to rules set by the manufacturer.
Got to totally agree with this. Between the speed they require, the hours they work and the fact that the factories aren't air conditioned in a part of the country where the humidity is frequently as high or higher than the temperature and it's a wonder they come out as well as they do.
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Old 06-02-2018, 02:21 PM   #18
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Their answer to that is the staples and look how well that turns out.
They stripped out the screws holding the inner sliding door on the closet. Had to rehang it on the last trip.
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Old 06-02-2018, 04:26 PM   #19
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I must live in a different world. We worked at Disney world during our Florida winter stays and the young people we worked with were hard workers most of them seasonal working their way through school. Perhaps we know the wrong young people as we see hard working young folks trying to improve themselves.

We have been through I think every RV manufacturer assembly line in the Elkhart area and we see people working hard under what I consider harsh conditions.

IMO the worker is not at fault for poor quality or workmanship the company sets the rules and controls the work environment. The worker assembles the RV with parts provided by the vendors according to rules set by the manufacturer.
The worker is responsible for workmanship, the company for the parts. If the worker says, this is not working, We have a better way, the company should listen.. If the quality of a part is always causing warranty issues, ie, thetford toilet, it is much cheaper to remedy the situation with thetford, or go to another supplier. If cutomers complain about blow outs, its cheaper for the company to fix this. Returns to the dealer for warranty work are much cheaper to fix at the point of origin than out in the field where dealers and customers get frustrated.As far as workng condirtions, aint no use in complaining when you got a job to do.. it dont get done looking at it. I have worked in snow, 15 below zero, rain, heAt and wind.. Aint no biggie...
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Old 06-02-2018, 04:34 PM   #20
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All about profit Ö 2 minutes per unit (.03 hr) times a very conservative company labor cost (wages, ins, benefits, perishable items to sustain workforce) of $50 hr times 10,000 units a year times say 20 consumer ideas per unit on quality comes out to $300,000 a year. I've worked on assembly lines before as have some of you. After years of doing the same thing didn't you become a bit numb to it all?
But if another company took the time to do this, they may sell more units than a sloppy company.. Think 1970s GM..if it costs more, charge me.. one place I worked at had employees moving to different jobs in the plant.. Made it much less boring.if it cost you say 50 more, would you pay it to have nicely ran wiring, clean plumbing lines, and a schematic of all systems?..quality keeps on giving..
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