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#21 OFFLINE   alpenliterep

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 09:40 AM

How about some type of trap door in the FLOOR of the cabover. Then one could buy a pick up with a sunroof and use it to get into the truck in an emergency. Would have to climb under the mattress of course. Would probably be easier with twin beds.


You are right, if more campers had twin beds this would be a more viable option to consider putting into production. Building code would not alow it under the mattress.
Thank You.
Beau
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#22 OFFLINE   alpenliterep

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 09:56 AM

I agree with the cabinet latches. Copy, do not try to improve on, Lance and Eagle Caps latches. I would like to see a SOLID rear step like the Snowriver built to incorporate the rear ladder. You could remove the ladder and use it as an entry step. Frees ups up the basement for larger holding tanks and/or more storage.


There are about 5-6 veriations of the positive catch cabinet latch. I will use one of them. Great idea on the step/ladder. However, with the saftey egress through the roof it does not comply with code to have the ladder removable. I have been considering making the saftey egress out the side window and this might alow us to get creative with the ladder.
Thank You
Beau
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#23 OFFLINE   alpenliterep

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 10:07 AM

My wife says it might be nice to offer the consumer a choice of solid colors on the cushions, pillow shams, bedspreads and the like. On some makes you feel like you are walking into a traveling "bordello"... :D .....I say add an option for upgrading the faucets in the bathroom and galley. With the amount these units cost, and with water leakage being our worst nightmare a better quality fixture would be something I would pay extra for. Or just be the first one to do it because you care......Innovative idea !!! ;)

Mike


There are to issues for upgrading the faucets, weight and cost. Assuming I could handle the weight side of things, let me ask you this. How much more would you be willing to pay for a faucet upgrade?
Thank You
Beau
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#24 OFFLINE   alpenliterep

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 10:25 AM

Are there any exterior plastic components that don't yellow when exposed to the sun? That would be a great addition.

I agree with better documentation when it comes to wiring runs and areas available for modifications. I have always had to spend most of my time making sure I am not drilling or cutting the wrong thing when installing a modification. This would help the weekend handymen.

I think some manufacturers are going with upgraded power systems, but I would think it would be a great selling point to have the power system that everyone talks about on the forums already installed in your unit. I always ask myself "If we are all talking about it, why do they just include it in the first place?"

Pre wire for solar and possibly other additions. What does it cost to plan ahead for an inverter installation? Maybe that could be a selling point for dealers, "this baby is per wired for an inverter! We can get you that installed for just $$$$ additional."

I could probably come up with a couple more and I will think about it. Thanks for asking the question, it's a great communication tool and even though I own another brand, I'll remember that you asked if I ever purchase again.

Dean


You have touched on one of my personal "pet peeves". The quick answer is NO, there are no plastic exterior components that won't yellow. However, most of these components can be replaced with fiberglass, metal or other materials. It comes back to the old weight and cost formula, how much would you pay to get rid of the plastic?

What upgraded power system are you speaking of?

We do prewire for solar. The inverter is another story. All inverters have different installation specifications, hence the problem with a pre-wire.
Thank you for your comments. I try to always remind myself... it is not what we don't know, it is what we don't know we don't know. So I keep asking the questions.
Beau
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#25 OFFLINE   alpenliterep

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 11:42 AM

Perhaps insist that the vendors you use do a bit more as far as quality control on there end. I understand that there are only so many options you have to choose from, but what you all have to understand is that the biggest name on the camper is YOURS, and that is the one people see when we are heading down the road......It does not make me very Happy, actually I get a bit Jacked Up when I see rust spots developing on exterior parts of my camper that is less than 2 months old....Ya know what i mean :D

Mike

So how are we all doing so far Beau? And I agree with "canyonwren", thanks for asking !!


I do know what you mean. We don't like lesser quality parts anymore than you do. The cost of warranty repair and replacement can eat a manufacture alive. Everyone is doing great with there responses. Keep em coming.
Thank You
Beau
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#26 OFFLINE   alpenliterep

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 11:49 AM

I was thinking of the same thing after my first post. Having a the option of an factory installed inverter or the option of a pre wire for an inverter. A quality inverter. Something like a Xantrex RS400 or an Exeltech with the power going to limited outlets in the living area. The most popular spots: TV, bathroom, dinning table. maybe have separate outlets so you can choose what to plug into at the outlet. I wouldn't bother with any high power inverters. In my mind their called generators ;)

Being an Alpenlite owner I already know that Alpenlites come with the upgraded power systems and have the pre wire for solar option as well. That is something you don't want to get rid of. They also have a pre wire for a generator option... which I wish mine would have been ordered with so I didn't have to do it myself. :D I bought mine used and the original owner didn't order the option.


I like the idea of offering a inverter option and I will do some research on this. By the way... nice camper.
Thanks You
Beau
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#27 OFFLINE   alpenliterep

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 11:57 AM

Get rid of the worthless sewer hose holder that only holds the cheap 10' sections of hose. I think most of us are using a heavier grade hose and they just don't fit in those holders. I looked at a camper today with it. What a waste.


I couldn't agree more.
Thank You
Beau
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#28 OFFLINE   alpenliterep

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 12:02 PM

Aaah, just thought of something else.
By the time one gets the bed nice and comfy with all of the foam, down & fleece blankets, the side closets doors just barely scrape over top of the covers. Maybe the cabinet doors on the cab over could be a few inches shorter?


Great observation. This one is going on my list for sure.
Thank You
Beau
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#29 OFFLINE   alpenliterep

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 12:10 PM

Here are a few more suggestions.

Some of your current or prospective buyers may have disabilities. The one that comes to mind is Sleep Apnea, which I and others here suffer from.

There needs to be adequate 110v and 12v plugs in the coach to accomodate this. In mine I had the factory add 12v plugs on either side of the overhead bed. I also had them add an inverter, to handle both a sleep apnea machine and a heated humidifier. The humidifier needs to run off the inverter. There also needs to be adequate battery capacity to support people with sleep apnea. The batteries should be no maintenance, like agm which even could be mounted in the coach.


Ok, here is the truth. As a manufacture I can't afford to put extra items in all units if the demand is not there by a majority. This does not mean I wouldn't be happy to accommodate people with special needs and requests on a per unit basis. I hope this seems fair to everyone.
Thank You
Beau
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#30 OFFLINE   mjgcamper

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 12:15 PM

Alpinlite was really great to us when we toured the factory in the caravan.

The only suggestion I have is to have an outside compartment that is big enough to hold the Honda generators, because they are very popular, also with real locking locks that no one elses key will work in. Or a way to lock up the portable gen while running like a bicycle lock cable in order to set it on the ground.

Softer shore power cables with easier storage too.
To go see the Northern lights, Alaska, Queen Charlot Islands, all of B.C., Alberta too, To travel every back road inside the American and Canadian Rockies. Not a 'Grand Potentate', just grand while in the mountains, fire going, bears all around, no work to do.

#31 OFFLINE   alpenliterep

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 01:08 PM

How about an aux water pump switch in the bathroom? We leave ours off normally and inevitably there is the "d'oh" that we forgot to turn on the water pump..... :D

Also, when hooking up to power it would be nice to have some kind of indicator that you can see while standing at the back door looking inside (without having to climb in). The way I determine if we're good to go is to look at the microwave. I did this with the Six Pac and the Host. Both require me to climb inside to see.


EXCELLENT IDEA! Water pump in the bathroom goes to the top of the list. Nothing worse than getting cought in the bath with no water.
Thank You
Beau
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#32 OFFLINE   alpenliterep

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 01:12 PM

How about some windows near the ceiling so that a 6' person can see out without stooping.


Which overhead cabinet are you willing to give up?
Thank You
Beau
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#33 OFFLINE   alpenliterep

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 01:31 PM

This is a modification I plan on doing and I though what the heck I'll throw it in as well. I like to go deep into the back country and sometimes you’re dragging tree limbs and stuff on the side and top of the camper. On my old camper, I managed to scrape holes on the very edge of the roof where the rubber edpm is curled over the edges of the roof. I know it was from some low hanging tree branches. I was checking the roof top but I missed these small rubs on the side in the very front where you feel unsafe to get out on. You guessed it I got some water damage before I caught them.

Most all campers have a roof railing on them but just on the back end. I am thinking about a 7/8" tube rail about 3" or so running along the full length of the rubber roof edge to protect it. Just like a bow rail on a boat. It will need to be a little more outbound than the roof racks are. That way branches and stuff would hit and rub on the rail and protect the roof. You could even incorporate it into the roof rack. Starting in the front running relatively low ~3" then it could raise up higher toward the back to encompass a roof rack. The front leading edge also has to die into the roof so you don’t catch anything on it. I was going to do it in stainless steel but an aluminum rail would be just as good. I was going to build mine using boat railing fittings. This could be just an option for us back county types but it may be worth while for everyone. I am sure we all have come across low trees and such on the public roads.
P.S. Ditto on the cabinet doors on the cab over. The doors were ok until the 2" memory foam topper and down comforter came along. I don't think I know anyone without a foam topper so make room for them.


I like the concept. But, I have a couple of considerations. First, you are adding weight. Second, how many holes are you going to put in the roof to try and keep from getting holes in the roof. Third, the old stand by... how much would you be willing to pay. Suggestions like this are the tough ones for me. Its a great idea. But, if a majority of the market can't or won't see the value how as a manufacture do I justify offering it. Even as a option there has to be a large demand in order to off-set introduction cost.
Thank You
Beau
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#34 OFFLINE   alpenliterep

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 01:49 PM

I think you should be able to upgrade the galley and bathroom faucets along with the shower head to some good quality fixtures for a extra $100.00 or less. Since I'm sure you buy in bulk the added cost should not be huge. In my AF, in the bathroom in order to use the shower, you pull up on a little (cheap plastic) lever that sits between the hot and cold on and off valves. The only access to the faucet is on the outside of the bathroom in the pantry area. The pantry is a very narrow door with a slide out rack. I took the cover panel off inside the pantry (about a 10" square opening) and thats where access to the faucet is. There is NO WAY I can change this out. If there was I would, but I can't reach it...... If this faucet breaks or starts leaking, at $70.00 an hour for the dealer to replace, you would probably end up with another cheap faucet at somewhere around $250.00 to $300.00 or an ongoing slow leak that might cost thousands in damage before you knew it was there!!! Yeah, I would gladly pay extra for GOOD QUALITY fixtures just for the peace of mind.........
Mike


The upgraded faucets we use in our high-end 5th wheels and motorhomes cost about $280.00 more per set than the current camper models. I will build a few with the upgrade and see how they are received by the public.
Thank You
Beau
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#35 OFFLINE   alpenliterep

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 01:55 PM

Alpinlite was really great to us when we toured the factory in the caravan.

The only suggestion I have is to have an outside compartment that is big enough to hold the Honda generators, because they are very popular, also with real locking locks that no one elses key will work in. Or a way to lock up the portable gen while running like a bicycle lock cable in order to set it on the ground.

Softer shore power cables with easier storage too.


I have some new models coming with a compartment for the Honda Gen. I like the idea of a locking station for the portable Gen. I know what you mean about the shore cords. I don't know of a more flexable choice though.
Thank You
Beau
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#36 OFFLINE   2ivswo

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 03:19 PM

Hey what about the LED light suggestion?

#37 OFFLINE   TCINTN

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 03:29 PM

Beau,
Thanks for letting all of us contribute ideas on how to make a better TC. One of the things I would like to see, is for us bigger people in a dry bath shower, put the shower curtain on a curve rail attached to the ceiling so that when taking a shower, your arms and elbows want be hitting the or sticking to the shower curtain.
The other is places to store things. I remember working with a "space engineer" on how to store things in an efficient manner in an operating room. It was amazing the ideas he came up with on how to store all of the supplies we needed to keep in the rooms. So, is there any way you can get someone like that to help in coming up with more efficient ways to store the things we carry. Maybe some of what you develop could be an option since others might not need as much storage.
Steps into a camper are usually straight up. Find a way to step up at an angle to make it easier to get in.
Battery roll out tray with easier connectors.
I agree with upgrading the bath and kitchen fixtures and some type of latches for cabinet doors.
tcintn
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#38 OFFLINE   alpenliterep

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 04:43 PM

Hey what about the LED light suggestion?


Sorry, I wrote a response to this earlier and it must have not posted. Anyway, I am a big fan of the LED light. They put out a more pure light(less eye strain), last longer, and are lighter weight. What more could someone ask for? You could ask for them to be less expensive. They are starting to come down in price and you should start to see them showing up in the campers within the next year sometime.
Thank You
Beau
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#39 OFFLINE   alpenliterep

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 05:04 PM

Beau,
Thanks for letting all of us contribute ideas on how to make a better TC. One of the things I would like to see, is for us bigger people in a dry bath shower, put the shower curtain on a curve rail attached to the ceiling so that when taking a shower, your arms and elbows want be hitting the or sticking to the shower curtain.
The other is places to store things. I remember working with a "space engineer" on how to store things in an efficient manner in an operating room. It was amazing the ideas he came up with on how to store all of the supplies we needed to keep in the rooms. So, is there any way you can get someone like that to help in coming up with more efficient ways to store the things we carry. Maybe some of what you develop could be an option since others might not need as much storage.
Steps into a camper are usually straight up. Find a way to step up at an angle to make it easier to get in.
Battery roll out tray with easier connectors.
I agree with upgrading the bath and kitchen fixtures and some type of latches for cabinet doors.


Ed,
You really got me chuckling with the shower curtian idea. Last week on a sales trip I stayed at a hotel with a curved shower curtian bar. I thought what a great idea for the little camper showers. Great minds think alike as the saying goes. I don't know about the "space engineer". Most of you are already putting 10 lbs of potatos in a 5 lbs sack. All kidding aside having a expert analyze space utilization is a great idea. I'll have to think on the steps for a while. Our new camper due out in october will have a slide out battery tray. Another vote for better faucets and fixtures... its moving higher up my list.
Thank you
Beau
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#40 OFFLINE   kayakin

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 08:08 PM

I'm agreeing with the upholstery comments. If I wanted to look like I was in a cheap living room, I wouldn't be out camping. Solids, denims, wildlife scenes, even camoflauge belong in campers instead of some of the faddish or light colored (see all dirt) fabric.

Bonnie in Montana




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