Oliver Factory tour, Observations - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 11-23-2016, 11:24 AM   #15
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A couple of years ago, hubs and I saw an Oliver, and being Uhaul owners, hubs really liked the smooth, inside walls, not to mention all the quality in the camper. However, I really wanted a camper with a sense of multiple rooms and had been looking at Bigfoot 25-foot campers online. Happily, for our checkbook (The 25-foot was simply not in the finances, anyway.), we found our Bigfoot Silver Cloud. There is not a trip we take that we don't comment over and over how much we love this camper. In fact, hubs was not home when I came home this AM from a doctor's visit. I bet he is at the parking place where our Bigfoot is, doing something to prep it for our FL trip in a few weeks.

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Old 11-23-2016, 11:52 AM   #16
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Thanks. I am going to check out the BF Silver Cloud on line right now. Wife and I were just discussing all this over lunch.
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Old 11-23-2016, 12:52 PM   #17
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Sorry, they only made 12 Silver Clouds in the 80s and 90s. Ours is a 1987. The 25-foot Series 2500 version RQ new Bigfoot model is similar though in that you get a sense of rooms like our Silver Cloud. It is nice to be able to go to the bedroom and nap or (eventually) watch TV that is different from what is being watched in the livingroom.

Occasionally, they do come on the market in various condition. We were lucky. We had to repair water damage in the bedroom, put in new curtains, a new fridge, a new door, new tires, new hitch, and, because we had a lot of sway, a Propride sway bar. That sounds like a lot, but we got a really good deal to begin with, and now, barring new stickers and since we cleaned and poly-glowed, it looks like a new camper.

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bedroom Bigfoot.jpg   Bigfoot living room.jpg  

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Old 11-23-2016, 12:55 PM   #18
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Here is the link to the 25 foot RQ Bigfoot: 2500 Series Travel Trailers - Bigfoot RV - Truck Campers & Travel Trailers - Recreational Vehicle Manufacturer

The other thing is the Bigfoot Silver Cloud is really low if you are in rough areas. The newer ones are higher.

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Old 11-23-2016, 01:31 PM   #19
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Thanks for the pics Cindy. Looks great, good job indeed!
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Old 11-23-2016, 04:11 PM   #20
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gsg,

The Escape company would not allow anyone to tour the factory at the time we were there. They were working on existing orders and at the same time trying to move into another building. Their current facility is small and very crowded. They did have one each of all their models outside and open for inspection. They responded to our questions. There were 20 to 25 other people going through the trailers.

We spent half a day or so looking at the 19', 21' and the 5th wheel. The fiberglass was well done, on par with the Casita, and is a single layer of fiberglass with a soft smooth padded cover inside, so easy to clean. The design of all their units are a bit more square in cross section, and therefore results in the cabinets holding more items (compared to the more rounded hull of the Casita). The units have wood cabinets, so the insides are similar to stick built trailers, and are a bit dark as a result. The drawers have metal glides. The cabinets are glued and stapled. Quality of the wood working is about the same as a low to middle end stick built trailers out of Indiana. We were hoping for a high end product, but were disappointed in the quality of the units overall, relative to the price. To put this in perspective, it is about the same level of quality as the Casita, but costs quite a bit more.

We viewed the Big Foot Travel trailer at Camper Outlet, 9620 SW Tualatin-Sherwood Rd, Tualatin, OR 97062. According to this dealer he is the only dealer for Big Foot in the US. I did call around to the dealers listed on the Big Foot website prior to driving out, and this was the only dealership that had units available. Some of the dealerships I called did not even know they were a dealer for Big Foot travel trailers.

There are two salesmen/owners at this dealership. I called to make an appointment two months in advance, and was assured the next shipment of trailer would be in two weeks from that date. When we got there we were not allowed to go into the only trailer on the showroom floor. It had been prepped for a customer and was ready to be picked up: I can understand why we were not allowed to go inside. However, I was upsit that they did not have any trailers at all from Big Foot. They were adamant about not letting us go into the purchased trailer. We did look at the outside, and we did go into a number of slide in truck campers, which the dealer said was the same quality as the trailers.

The trailers are square in cross section, similar to the Escape. They do have some sort of paneling over the fiberglass, with insulation in between. Fit and finish is high quality. The units are very expensive. Overall they do not have the bling of the Oliver but do have quality fittings. They are more expensive than the Escape, possibly more expensive than the Oliver.

We rejected the Big Foot (although I may go back and review again) because the propane tanks drop below the frame. We go over some fairly rough terrain and difficult situations and need the clearance. I asked the dealer if the company would be willing to place the tanks above the frame like other manufacturers, and he stated Big Foot would not make that change, others asked and were declined.

It is hard to recall much about the trailer, because I was a bit upset about not being allowed to go inside the unit that was sold, was upset they would not make a simple change, and basically wrote Big Foot off because they did not have the courtesy to call and let me know they did not have any units to view, even through I had left my name address, telephone number and email. I wonder what happens when an owner has a serious problem.
We have viewed several Escapes and they are nice trailers.
That being said I was also not impressed with the cabinets.
Hot melt glue and staples is something I would expect from IKEA
but not in $40 K trailer.. In one of the 21 footers we viewed the cabinet components were pulling apart ,the glue joints had separated, and the staples were working their way out . It may look good when new but probably not 4 or 5 Years down the road .
The cabinetry in a friend's new stick built is much better.
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Old 11-23-2016, 04:38 PM   #21
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My Escape is eight years old and there is no evidence of deterioration due to the build. I've taken it over a lot of washboard and forestry roads.
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Old 11-23-2016, 04:48 PM   #22
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My Escape is eight years old and there is no evidence of deterioration due to the build. I've taken it over a lot of washboard and forestry roads.
No issues at all for the 6 1/2 years I owned my 19 either. The Bigfoot trailers I have worked on were had cabinetry work not even as good as the Escapes. I toured a lot of big rigs at the RV show here this spring, and was appalled at the quality of workmanship with all but the more expensive ones.

Funny too, I have heard of very little issue on the Escape forum about cabinets coming apart.

Escape uses real hardwood for the doors and drawer fronts, the parts that take the most wear, but a thin luan plywood for the carcasses, which is structurally good and light in weight. Staples are used as surface fasteners, as they don't show like screws would, and hold way better than nails do.
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Old 11-23-2016, 04:55 PM   #23
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I've seen no evidence of hot glue either. Can't imagine anyone using hot glue for any construction reason.
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