ParkLiner Concerns from a previous owner - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-12-2013, 09:28 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by LindaK View Post


2. We had concerns about a number of ParkLiner components that did not seem up to the standard of other current molded fiberglass travel trailers. Some examples were:
  • Battery that was not in a closed, vented (to the outside) and secured container (despite recommendations of the battery manufacturer; Pete did some research due to his own questions about this set-up and found this forum in which a tech person who works for Optima explains the necessity for enclosing and venting batteries that are inside a vehicle or an RV; here is the link: Battery Vent? - evolutionm.net )
  • Torsion axle that was welded to the frame (in spite of the fact that no other current trailer manufacturer that we are aware of does this; current standard promotes attaching axle with brackets, not welding to the frame of the trailer; there are many potential problems that could result due to this set-up)
  • Gray water tank mounted to the underside of the trailer with plumber's tape, not the typical brackets, bolts, and secure straps found in most travel trailers; a full tank is heavy!
  • Interior wiring, plumbing, and gas lines exposed and not secured or protected from the jostling of items stored in cabinetry while traveling, thus creating a potential of loose connections over time
  • Wheel wells not proportional to size of tires (not enough room for movement of tires and wheels during travel); Pete pointed this out to me prior to any of the threads that now identify this as an actual issue in PL trailers
  • No drain on water tank (most, if not all other travel trailers/RVs that we know of, have a drain on the water tank)
  • Escape hatch is not located in an area that would facilitate actually being able to use it
  • Various poor fit and finish issues; too numerous to mention
.
Optima batteries are sealed and are often installed without a purpose built vent. If you drive one of certain late model Buicks, stay out of the back seat if having the battery inside the vehicle is a problem.It may be vented but it is a standard lead/acid battery... Ejection seat or PITA?

Well.... Scamp comes to mind as one example of the torsion axle being welded to the frame, I would have it no other way as it is more reliable aand easier to service. I can not think of a problem which is caused by a properly sized axle being properly welded to the frame, let alone many. Torsion axles are commonly welded in place and have been for generations.

The typical graywater tank is fastened to the floor by something like 20 screws through the flange and then the tank straps are added security.
Plumber's tape being about the same as most any other strap material used.
I use scrap pieces of Signode banding from the dumpster behind my local HVAC store. In most cases two of these are used to install the gas tank back into an old car and it is often the only means of support.
A full gas tank is heavy and common,but I almost never tow with a full graywater tank.
The Falcon's tank is the floor of the trunk and there are no straps added.

While I agree that the freshwater tank should have a drain, The pump should empty the tank ....unless the battery has exploded!

I refused an escape hatch as a condition of purchase when I bought my Scamp.
If it ever falls over, the additional expense of kicking a window out will certainly be inconsequential!

I don't own a Parkliner, and I have several sound reasons for not owning an Escape eventhough both are fine trailers.
I am partial to Scamp,and own a 2004 Scamp 13 and, although no trailer is perfect from the factory, it is so satisfactory that I would not consider trading for any other make now extant.
However, if you go over to Scamper's yahoo group you might sometimes think it was founded for the sole purpose of finding fault with Scamp.
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Old 05-13-2013, 12:13 PM   #16
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As a Parkliner owner (with the tire rub issue) I have done some hard thinking about how I want to approach all of this too. My patience has run thin a few times but what I have decided is this....

As a guy who is 6'1" in socks, I need a tall trailer. That limits my options dramatically if I want to be able to stand up inside without a bent neck, which I do.

I believe in the fundamental design of the trailer and I believe Chandler is a good person and wants to do the right thing. Those are all key ingredients.

Are there some issues? Clearly. So far all issues I have raised have been or are being resolved. I believe that any future warranty type issues will also be resolved. Since Parkliner is still relatively new (<40 units seems VERY new to me) I am willing to work through a few of these. Once I do, I feel like I will have one of the coolest campers out there! Five years down the road, when I have made all of my Mark-ish customizations, well, it will be super cool.

I agree with posting any issues (thus my posting on the tire issue) because I believe that benefits everyone in the end...even Parkliner. They have the chance to connect with us and see what we are saying, thinking, and doing with our trailers. So, I think all these discussions are good.

I want Parkliner to succeed as a business. I have started a small business myself and I know how hard it is to wear all the hats and be responsive too. It wears a person down. Just when you think you have hit a smooth patch, someone calls with a tire issue!

In summary, I think we should let each other know of issues, but I also think we should do what we can to help Parkliner succeed. So if FUTURE Parkliner owners are reading this, and I know they are, be sure to ask Chandler about some of these things. The tire issue is fixed, so you are good there. Ask him about the batteries...see if he has any knowledge or ideas on alternate solutions that may benefit us all. Direct him here too, as he may learn some ideas from all the years of experience people on this forum have!

Anyway, my two cents....

Mark
Parkliner #37
Mark, I definitely appreciate and support your perspective! We also hope that Chandler and ParkLiner succeed! Ultimately, I think we all choose a path based on our own personal experience. The beauty of this forum is that people can share their experiences and we can learn from each other.

I also agree with the fact that Chandler is a good person! In the six months that we were communicating with him, we refrained from posting for the same reasons you mentioned: it is a new and struggling company with a good product; our hope was that the particular issues we had would be resolved; when we shared our concerns with Chandler, he offered to help us (we asked for some items and some instructions in how to install them and said we would pay for the items, including shipping; Chandler said that wouldn't be necessary and that he would take care of it); the uniqueness of the ParkLiner design was what drew us to purchasing one and we wanted to make it work for us.

Some of the issues we had with our particular unit have been resolved and fixed in newer units. I did not list all of the things that we needed to fix; those things that were safety issues, we did fix. When we drove off with our "new" ParkLiner, after having purchased it from the previous owner, within 1/4 mile our door flew open three times. We finally secured it with a bungee cord and were later told by Chandler that this was a design flaw in the first few ParkLiners that had been resolved by making a sturdier door frame. He said that he was concerned about our door set-up failing over time and would send us a template for the new frame (we got that five months later), along with complete instructions for how to install it (we never got the instructions). In spite of numerous conversations with Chandler (phone and emails), and continued promises that he would help us, with this door issue along with a few other concerns (and at one point, he told us that we were the only owners that had any problems), all of which were on a friendly and positive note (we remained friendly and Chandler was always positive and often apologetic for the problems and for not following through), we ultimately decided that six months was our limit. I truly hope that Chandler is able to overcome and resolve the customer service issues as well as fixes that are needed.

Any new product can have issues; we certainly had issues with our new Escape trailers. The expectation, though, is that these issues will be resolved in a timely manner by the manufacturer of that product. This has happened with our Escape trailers. This is definitely an important aspect for any new trailer on the market in order for that company to succeed! That was not OUR experience with ParkLiner and it became very frustrating and disappointing. I look forward to hearing about many future happy ParkLiner owners on the forum. This is a good place to vent and share experiences so that all of us can learn, including the molded fiberglass trailer company owners!

Happy Trails,
Linda
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Old 05-13-2013, 01:33 PM   #17
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This is a great thread!!!

We have ordered a ParkLiner and have been following the tire rub issue and it's resolution with great interest. Believe me, we've learned a ton from all of those postings!

While I'm very glad to hear the support and optimism for the future of ParkLiner, I'm also very glad to see that someone has so succinctly listed the issues they personally have had with the company and product. It allows those of us going forward with ParkLiner to do so with eyes wide open. In our case, we're coming from a pop-up tent trailer. This thread provides yet another springboard to educate us and gives us food for thought as to what other questions and concerns we may want to address before we take delivery.

At this point, we are still planning to go ahead with our ParkLiner because no other fiberglass trailer provides the height needed for my husband. I've gone back and looked at the other brands and they all look like great trailers! I'd be happy to own any of them, but none of them has the interior height that ParLiner offers.

So far ParkLiner's issues look fixable. I hope their will be fewer fixes needed by the time we get ours But more importantly, I hope that other current and/or previous owners will continue to share any issues they've had with their ParkLiners. It's really helpful to know what issues we may need to address as we move forward into ownership. It's also nice to hear how different people have addressed some of these same issues.

The spirit of this board is wonderful! It's a pleasure to read about the pros and cons of products and solutions without having to wade through some of the snarkiness seen on other boards.

Thank-you to all of you for making this website so rich and valuable to newbies like us.
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Old 05-13-2013, 02:07 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Birmingham1 View Post

As a guy who is 6'1" in socks, I need a tall trailer. That limits my options dramatically if I want to be able to stand up inside without a bent neck, which I do.
Other trailers inside height....
Scamp = 6' 3"
Casita 17' = 6' 1-1/2"
Escape = 6' 2"
ParkLiner 6' 5"

Granted ParkLiner has the highest ceilings. Interior height determined my choice when I bought my Scamp 13'. I wanted a smaller trailer, with less stuff to go wrong and lighter. The only two on the market at the time was Casita Patriot and Scamp 13'. The Casita has only 5' 10" interior height, why the Scamp at that time was 6'1" I stand 5' 11" and don't have to bend over to stand and cook.
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Old 05-13-2013, 02:18 PM   #19
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Escape interior height is 6'2" for the 17 and 6'5" for the 19. I'm guessing the 21 will also be 6'5".
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Old 05-13-2013, 02:25 PM   #20
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Not only is the ParkLiner truly 6'5" inside, we figured out a way to use the queen bed as a king bed (which also meant one of us didn't have to crawl over the other at night!) and that was a definite plus. Each particular trailer seems to have its own unique qualities; how could there possibly be one "perfect" trailer for everyone, when each of us has uniquely different needs in a trailer? The husband of the couple that bought our ParkLiner was 6'4" and he was thrilled to be able to stand up in the trailer! That was the deciding factor for them and anything else was "fixable!"

While the interior height of the 19ft. Escape is technically 6'5" inside, the height under the AC unit is a bit less.

The beauty of the Internet, and especially forums like this one, is the increased demand for high quality products and decent customer service. That's a good thing! Personally, I think that competition is also good and start-up companies can learn from the successes of similar companies.

Happy trails,
Linda
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Old 05-13-2013, 03:17 PM   #21
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Don't forget the EggCamper, with a 6'7" interior height. LIGHTWEIGHT FIBERGLASS TRAVEL TRAILER
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Old 05-13-2013, 03:37 PM   #22
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Not only is the ParkLiner truly 6'5" inside, we figured out a way to use the queen bed as a king bed (which also meant one of us didn't have to crawl over the other at night!) and that was a definite plus. Each particular trailer seems to have its own unique qualities; how could there possibly be one "perfect" trailer for everyone, when each of us has uniquely different needs in a trailer? The husband of the couple that bought our ParkLiner was 6'4" and he was thrilled to be able to stand up in the trailer! That was the deciding factor for them and anything else was "fixable!"

Happy trails,
Linda
Good for you for being so upfront with prospective buyers, Linda! Some folks would hang fire on such things until the unit was safely sold...

I understand that you were also kind enough to let Thom and Cari look your Parkliner over before they ordered their new one and I'm sure they appreciated the heads-up(s), too!

Francesca
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Old 05-13-2013, 03:59 PM   #23
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Just finished reading this thread and i'll add some observations in context.

These are specific to our Parkliner #035 who came off the line April 9, 2013...your millage may vary. I will be adding to my gallery/album later on tonight.

1) Tire Rub. Issue is on its way to be resolved. I had the crew at the local tire center test some tires and they found a nice set of LT/Trailer 185/r14 8 ply with an ~1850lb capacity with nice clearance in the well. When Chandler called me the next day after my testing, i asked him what size tire was on the way...It was like i was hearing the tire center crew yell out the numbers all over again. So i was pleased with the _fix_ Chandler had come up with since i have trusted this particular tire center for about 20 years and putting wheels/tires on half a dozen rigs for us without issue.

2) Battery area: I will post pictures in my album but i think i must have something very unique to the Parkliners?? You see i have a battery bay that has two compartments; the aft compartment exactly fits two blue top sc34dm dual purpose AGM Marine batteries (with about ~1" wiggle room), then in the next compartment is the converter/inverter. Nothing is going anywhere in this box.
a PS on the AGM batteries...I've seen these same batteries in the bilge of power boats and sailboats with engine right next to stock batteries...with no _box_ between or vents. . . right from the manufacturers with USCG approval.

3) Fresh Water Tank: I will post a close up tonight in my album, but this tank has a valve for emptying tank immediately aft of the tank that is located at the rear curb-side corner. Remember also this tank location was at our request, and Chandler was happy to oblige and did a great job!

4) Grey tank: Yes ours has the metal banding. <(I look under nearly every trailer at RV shows...You would be surprised at how many rigs have this same system in place!) And so did our A-Liner! And it's tank was the same size and i've (crazily) pulled it full of grey since i was not able to empty the tank for many miles down the highway. I might ask our local RV shop for a recommendation.

5) Besides the one fresh water pump, and the one shower bilge pump, there are NO other systems (besides the 7 LED lamps) in our rig. Very, very simple rig for off-grid entertaining and relaxing.

6) Door Locks: Ours has a residential Schlange door lock plus matching deadbolt...it is honestly the nicest door hardware i've seen on an RV entrance door!

So there you have it. AND i will repeat once again (in harmony with some others), I only want the best for Chandler, Parkliner, and its customers. AND i am happy to be a Parkliner owner and that Cari and i had the vision to be early adopters...even with the _issues_.

Cheers,
Thom

PS...just saw Francesca's post...yes we were sooooo happy to see their early PL!
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Old 05-13-2013, 04:06 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by accrete View Post
Just finished reading this thread and i'll add some observations in context.

These are specific to our Parkliner #035 who came off the line April 9, 2013...you millage may vary. I will be adding to my gallery/album later on tonight.

1) Tire Rub. Issue is on its way to be resolved. I had the crew at the local tire center test some tires and they found a nice set of LT/Trailer 185/r14 8 ply with an ~1850lb capacity with nice clearance in the well. When Chandler called me the next day after my testing, i asked him what size tire was on the way...It was like i was hearing the tire center crew yell out the numbers all over again. So i was pleased with the _fix_ Chandler had come up with since i have trusted this particular tire center for about 20 years and putting wheels/tires on half a dozen rigs for us without issue.

2) Battery area: I will post pictures in my album but i think i must have something very unique to the Parkliners?? You see i have a battery bay that has two compartments; the aft compartment exactly fits two blue top group 27 dual purpose AGM Marine batteries (with about ~1" wiggle room), then in the next compartment is the converter/inverter. Nothing is going anywhere in this box.

3) Fresh Water Tank: I will post a close up tonight in my album, but this tank has a valve for emptying tank immediately aft of the tank that is located at the rear curb-side corner. Remember also this tank location was at our request, and Chandler was happy to oblige and did a great job!

4) Grey tank: Yes ours has the metal banding. But then so did our A-Liner! And it's tank was the same size and i've (crazily) pulled it full of grey since i was not able to empty the tank for many miles down the highway. I might ask our local RV shop for a recommendation.

5) Besides the one fresh water pump, and the one shower bilge pump, there are NO other systems (besides the 7 LED lamps) in our rig. Very, very simple rig for off-grid entertaining and relaxing.

So there you have it. AND i will repeat once again (in harmony with some others), I only want the best for Chandler, Parkliner, and its customers. AND i am happy to be a Parkliner owner and that Cari and i had the vision to be early adopters...even with the _issues_.

Cheers,
Thom
The only thing I see here that's a possible problem in the battery location. In the other thread the OP indicated that liquid was coming out of both batteries. That liquid is not contained in an acid proof container like it would be in a battery box. Sulfuric Acid is pretty strong stuff and can cause burns, eat through fabric and many other things.
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Old 05-13-2013, 04:13 PM   #25
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Cheers,
Thom

PS...just saw Francesca's post...yes we were sooooo happy to see their early PL!
I should have added to that post that in my opinion welding an axle on is NOT a defect. Also per the axle: it's probably useful to point out for the record that the early Parkliner in this thread probably has the Flexiride axle which seems not to have the tire rub issue.

Francesca
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Old 05-13-2013, 05:20 PM   #26
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I should have added to that post that in my opinion welding an axle on is NOT a defect. Also per the axle: it's probably useful to point out for the record that the early Parkliner in this thread probably has the Flexiride axle which seems not to have the tire rub issue.

Francesca
Yes, our ParkLiner had the Flexiride axle and therefore, no tire rub issue. However, we did note the small amount of room in the wheel well area and that was a concern. Smaller tires than the ones that are rubbing will definitely make a difference for those who have this issue.

Concerning the issue of welding a torsion axle directly to the trailer frame (and the floor frame as well, in the case of the ParkLiner): in all of the research we have done concerning this issue, the torsion frame is meant to be attached with brackets that are then welded or bolted to the frame. ParkLiner welds the torsion axle directly; no brackets. The problem with welding the actual torsion axle is that the heat from the welding can damage the rubber components that are inside the axle and this can degrade the integrity of the axle itself. We have found this on numerous technical welding sites as well as on torsion axle manufacturers' sites. It is simply not a good practice. Not only that, if there is a problem with the axle down the road (and many older trailers do have to have their axles replaced), the axle has to be "un-welded" from the frame. Much more practical to have the plates that can then be unbolted rather than having to remove direct welds to the frame. Older Scamps had axles welded to the frame like this; apparently, they don't do that now. They use the brackets and attach them that way.

All of our concerns are not necessarily others' concerns. I know that a number of the things we were dealing with on our early model have been changed in more current models. That was not our main issue with the trailer. As I said earlier, most, if not all, of the issues we had could have been fixed.

Our biggest issue, and this is based on OUR personal experience, was with the lack of support and help that we got from Chandler. I hope that others haven't had or don't have those issues. We did. I have a pile of emails and notes from phone calls that were not answered; I also have emails from Chandler promising to send the package for us that was sitting on his desk "next week." That took 5 months and it did not have the items in it that were promised. We received a template to fix our door frame (because Chandler told us that he was concerned about the integrity and longevity of the frame on our door; he had fixed later models and made them stronger) with a promise that we would get instructions for how to make the change. The instructions never came. He said he would send us a potty hatch with the hardware for installing it. The hardware did not come. We asked what sized rivets to use so that Pete could install it. We never got an answer; luckily, Pete guessed correctly. We asked for photos of the more current set-up for the propane line (ours came through the inside of the trailer and we were concerned about the safety of that) so that we could have that fixed. Those photos never came. We offered to pay for items and shipping; we just wanted a little help. What we did receive was minimal and incomplete. We didn't want to say anything about any of this publicly; we told Chandler that we wanted to make our trailer more up to his current standard before we showed it to anyone. He said he greatly appreciated that because he had made improvements and he would help us to get it to that point. We kept the trailer a secret from good friends, didn't take it camping, didn't say a word about any of this on any forums. We just waited and tried to fix what we could without the support. The issues I mention here and the list of concerns in my other posts are not all of what we have been working on; just the most important ones. Actually, though, the propane regulator that was on our ParkLiner was a single stage regulator (used on propane barbecues) and not safe to use if you have more than one propane item attached (we had a stove and a propane water heater). Pete fixed that by installing a dual stage regulator (with cover) and found a much better way to attach it.

I am glad that Accrete and others love their ParkLiners. I hope the business thrives and I hope customer service and support continues to improve. I hope no one else has to go through what we did.

I am not trying to cause the "demise" of ParkLiner, nor am I saying that our issues are common to anyone else. Each owner of any given trailer has their own needs and priorities. I was simply sharing our experience. It was frustrating for us to go through this; it was hard to be patient after waiting for 5 months and then to not have instructions or photos or hardware, not to mention some of the items that were promised, was disheartening. Period.
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Old 05-13-2013, 06:28 PM   #27
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Our biggest issue, and this is based on OUR personal experience, was with the lack of support and help that we got from Chandler.
Linda, I appreciate your letting us know of the issues you have had. I think most of us who have purchased or ordered a PL have experienced this lack of support, which is one of the problems associated with many small, start-up companies. I think it would help us all to hear from Chandler himself how he's planning to address the support issue. To my way of thinking, it would be beneficial if he pushed back the production schedule to focus on getting the support issue resolved. If I was currently evaluating trailers (instead of waiting to take delivery of my PL) this type of thread would most likely cause me to look at other manufacturers. It takes so long to build a good reputation, but it can so quickly become tarnished.
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Old 05-13-2013, 06:51 PM   #28
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Our biggest issue, and this is based on OUR personal experience, was with the lack of support and help that we got from Chandler. I hope that others haven't had or don't have those issues. We did. I have a pile of emails and notes from phone calls that were not answered; I also have emails from Chandler promising to send the package for us that was sitting on his desk "next week." That took 5 months and it did not have the items in it that were promised. We received a template to fix our door frame (because Chandler told us that he was concerned about the integrity and longevity of the frame on our door; he had fixed later models and made them stronger) with a promise that we would get instructions for how to make the change. The instructions never came. He said he would send us a potty hatch with the hardware for installing it. The hardware did not come. We asked what sized rivets to use so that Pete could install it. We never got an answer; luckily, Pete guessed correctly. We asked for photos of the more current set-up for the propane line (ours came through the inside of the trailer and we were concerned about the safety of that) so that we could have that fixed. Those photos never came. We offered to pay for items and shipping; we just wanted a little help. What we did receive was minimal and incomplete. We didn't want to say anything about any of this publicly; we told Chandler that we wanted to make our trailer more up to his current standard before we showed it to anyone. He said he greatly appreciated that because he had made improvements and he would help us to get it to that point. We kept the trailer a secret from good friends, didn't take it camping, didn't say a word about any of this on any forums. We just waited and tried to fix what we could without the support. It was frustrating for us to go through this; it was hard to be patient after waiting for 5 months and then to not have instructions or photos or hardware, not to mention some of the items that were promised, was disheartening. Period.

I'm totally lost...especially when it comes to the necessity for "secrecy"- who hides a trailer purchase from their friends???

Did you buy this trailer new from Parkliner, or is it something you bought on spec used and for resale (hopefully at a profit)???

I ask because it seems to me an important distinction if this is to be a conversation about "customer support"....

Thanks!

Francesca, at sea as usual
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