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Old 01-13-2017, 10:35 AM   #21
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'twill be interesting to see how a FG manufacturer in America will do going through dealerships. There's one thing you guys are missing- how much more will a person be willing to pay to drive to a dealership, SEE the camper they can have in possession NOW?

Something to think about.
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Old 01-13-2017, 10:44 AM   #22
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Later this year, the Airstream Nest is to be released into production and will be sold at dealers.
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Old 01-13-2017, 10:47 AM   #23
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Where did you see the prices?

I recall the Airstream Nest being VERY expensive...that in the range of the Oliver/Bigfoot models. But it was going to be very expensive before it fell into Airstream's hands.

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Originally Posted by rdickens View Post
Just FYI -
A Scamp16 Deluxe, with the "options package", is about the same price as the base model Parkliner.

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Old 01-13-2017, 10:55 AM   #24
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I asked. 😉

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Old 01-13-2017, 11:16 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
A no-option Scamp 13 with icebox, stove, and beds for four is $10K. The option package adds a 3-way fridge, screen door, and a few more goodies for less than $1K. Reasonable price, no dealers, a very modest deposit, outstanding durability and resale value: it's the perfect molded fiberglass trailer for a young family!

I will not despair of the direct-sale model until Scamp does.
I can also buy a 24 ft standard trailer with far more options / features than a Scamp 13 for $12,500 at a dealer close to my home . If you take the cost per foot and the standard options , FG trailers are about double the cost of a standard trailer . A 17 ft Casita with a few options is over 20 K , a 21 ft Escape with options is well over 30K , some as high as 40 K and a Oliver is 50k with no options.

A 13 ft Scamp may be reasonably priced but for most it is too small and does not fulfill their needs especially families with children

A friend recently bought a new 34 ft 5th wheel with more options / luxury features than any FG trailer has or has ever offered for $32K
Many people make purchases based solely on price and using that criteria alone FG trailers come up short.
You can preach forever about the merits of FG trailers forever but when you get to the bottom line they are expensive.
Could you imagine what vehicles would cost if they were built and sold using the FG trailer as a model , no one except the wealthy could afford a car .
A 15 ft Parkliner at a cost of $30 K is $2000/ft and that's with few options . A 34 Ft Standard 5th wheel which is fully loaded with options costs under $1K per foot.

We've owned two fiberglass trailers and have liked them .
We are looking at buying a larger trailer and would like to go FG but at the high cost of an Escape or Bigfoot or Oliver , we may go with a standard trailer . We are in our late 60's and at this stage in life if a trailer last 7 or 10 years that's plenty for us . A FG trailer may well last 20 to 25 years but by that time I will be 90/95 years old and won't care or know.
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Old 01-13-2017, 11:30 AM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donna D. View Post
No not the first. Bigfoot does it, Escape did it at one time and so did Trillium along with Little Joe/Ponderosa. There's probably others that I can't remember right of the top of my coffee-lacking brain.
None have prospered by adopting that model. Bigfoot has how many dealers in all of North America… a handful? Escape abandoned that model. Trillium folded, and Little Joe… not sure.

Does anyone think Parkliner is so different or unique that it will fare differently?

It's ironic that in the auto industry, the newest manufacturer, Tesla, is attempting to bypass the dealership model. Our last two vehicle purchases came from dealers many hours away after shopping online and haggling on the phone. I have only been back for warranty repairs. Everything else our local independent mechanic can handle. He could have done the warranty work, too, if allowed.

We live in the internet age in which there are a lot of ways to interact with a product, both digitally and in person, that do not require a middleman.

Dealers are… analog.

Here I go, spouting off on an over-caffeinated brain!
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Old 01-13-2017, 11:47 AM   #27
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I don't know anything about Parkliner's business model. It's entirely possible they're no longer interested in doing custom work and dealing with customers. Some of those can be a PITA. Then too, they're probably wholesaling trailers to dealers... maybe. Everyone is under the assumption using a dealer network will drive up prices. That may not be true. It's possible they'll be moving more into volume, if they're moving out of custom.

I wish them well.
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Old 01-13-2017, 11:50 AM   #28
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A 15 ft Parkliner at a cost of $30 K is $2000/ft and that's with few options . A 34 Ft Standard 5th wheel which is fully loaded with options costs under $1K per foot.
You are forgetting one thing, TOW VEHICLE. Many people, like myself, are retired. To cut expense only use one car. We do not want a $50K truck to pull it and then drive the gas guzzler everyday. Yeh yeh, you can get a truck cheaper then that, i hear ya, but not so easy. But then are stuck with two vehicles, to park, maintain, double in ins. so forth. Who wants to store a 34' trailer. It is not all about money and size, it is about love. Regards, Carl
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Old 01-13-2017, 11:51 AM   #29
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Don't think trying to move to volume makes sense in such a limited market.
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Old 01-13-2017, 12:07 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
...The days of reasonably priced fiberglass trailers that young families or senior citizen can afford are going fast...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
...Scamp 13… the perfect molded fiberglass trailer for a young family!
Quote:
Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
...A 13 ft Scamp may be reasonably priced but for most it is too small and does not fulfill their needs especially families with children...
I agree that molded fiberglass is a niche product and does not compete directly with conventional construction.

I was merely pointing out that, for those who do choose to embrace the road less traveled, there is one company left that continues to offer moderately priced molded fiberglass trailers with family-friendly layouts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
Could you imagine what vehicles would cost if they were built and sold using the FG trailer as a model, no one except the wealthy could afford a car.
Not a fair analogy, since cars can be considered a necessity and the vast majority of households have at least one, while an RV of any type is a luxury item and only a fraction of households own one.

But it does raise an interesting thought… Henry Ford made cars affordable through mass production. What if someone did come up with a practical way to mass produce molded fiberglass trailers? What if shell layup could be automated? What if the cost differential versus conventional construction could be narrowed substantially? What if Parkliner has a plan to do that?… To borrow a line from Henry Ford, "You can have any color you want… as long as it's white!"
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Old 01-13-2017, 12:40 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
I can also buy a 24 ft standard trailer with far more options / features than a Scamp 13 for $12,500 at a dealer close to my home . If you take the cost per foot and the standard options , FG trailers are about double the cost of a standard trailer . A 17 ft Casita with a few options is over 20 K , a 21 ft Escape with options is well over 30K , some as high as 40 K and a Oliver is 50k with no options.

A 13 ft Scamp may be reasonably priced but for most it is too small and does not fulfill their needs especially families with children

A friend recently bought a new 34 ft 5th wheel with more options / luxury features than any FG trailer has or has ever offered for $32K
Many people make purchases based solely on price and using that criteria alone FG trailers come up short.
You can preach forever about the merits of FG trailers forever but when you get to the bottom line they are expensive.
Could you imagine what vehicles would cost if they were built and sold using the FG trailer as a model , no one except the wealthy could afford a car .
A 15 ft Parkliner at a cost of $30 K is $2000/ft and that's with few options . A 34 Ft Standard 5th wheel which is fully loaded with options costs under $1K per foot.

We've owned two fiberglass trailers and have liked them .
We are looking at buying a larger trailer and would like to go FG but at the high cost of an Escape or Bigfoot or Oliver , we may go with a standard trailer . We are in our late 60's and at this stage in life if a trailer last 7 or 10 years that's plenty for us . A FG trailer may well last 20 to 25 years but by that time I will be 90/95 years old and won't care or know.
One thing I can add to the cost subject is about production...I come from a production manufacturing background and own a production manufacturing business. If a fiberglass trailer manufacturer can streamline operations and mass produce them the could reduce the cost per unit to make them by labor saving production methods, lowering costs by volume purchasing of the supplies and components required to manufacture them. The only way to do such an endeavor would be do have enough orders, for example through a dealer network, to justify the large scale production facilities to facilitate this. Now whether a fiberglass trailer can be mass produced at a cost to compete with stickies would come down to sales volumes, dealer markups, corporate and manufacturing overhead, etc. etc. But I believe its possible.

The most expensive parts (the fiberglass shells) could even be outsourced as well, like some other stick manufacturers who sub out components then assembly the whole thing in their facility.
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Old 01-13-2017, 12:53 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donna D. View Post
I don't know anything about Parkliner's business model. It's entirely possible they're no longer interested in doing custom work and dealing with customers...
You can eliminate semi-custom work without abandoning the direct sales model. That's how Casita operates, and they seem to be doing very well at it.

An attitude of not wanting to deal with customers… now that scares me for some reason...
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Old 01-13-2017, 01:11 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by Carl Pa View Post
A 15 ft Parkliner at a cost of $30 K is $2000/ft and that's with few options . A 34 Ft Standard 5th wheel which is fully loaded with options costs under $1K per foot.

You are forgetting one thing, TOW VEHICLE. Many people, like myself, are retired. To cut expense only use one car. We do not want a $50K truck to pull it and then drive the gas guzzler everyday. Yeh yeh, you can get a truck cheaper then that, i hear ya, but not so easy. But then are stuck with two vehicles, to park, maintain, double in ins. so forth. Who wants to store a 34' trailer. It is not all about money and size, it is about love. Regards, Carl
The fiberglass trailer community seems to be centered in the minimalist philosophy.. Small vehicles and trailers fit in well with that lifestyle. That philosophy doesn't line up well with the majority of the population , if it did the average size of a new home wouldn't be 2500 sg ft . I am retired as are the majority of people in my area and trucks are the predominant vehicle. I have 10 neighbors on my lake road and "everyone" drives a truck. I like my oversized ,too big , GAS GUZZLING , decadent , comfortable truck.
If no one wanted a trailer bigger than 20 ft than why are FG trailer not leading the market and only a small niche.
You can use all the convoluted logic in the world but FG trailers are expensive for theit size and features.
They may fit your needs & desires and that's great but for many they are an expensive novelty.
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Old 01-13-2017, 01:33 PM   #34
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Who is "Little Guy"? Looks like we got in just in time before the price increase.
wc
Little Guys started as a teardrop manufacturer. First they expanded to several versions. Then they started making T@Bs. Recently the Meerkat showed up. I'm not sure if they make it or just sell it. They have a nation wide dealer network established so I suspect Parkliner will just be added to the order form. .
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Old 01-13-2017, 02:05 PM   #35
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A new school bus costs about the same as a new Corvette. If you take the cost per foot and standard options, the Corvette costs twice as much as the school bus. Even discounting the initial cost, making 77 trips each way to school every day can be time consuming, and very expensive.
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Old 01-13-2017, 02:22 PM   #36
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It would seem that they will need to make some substantial changes to increase production enough to supply a network of dealers. From what I've read, they've always had trouble meeting the small demand, with variable quality. Is someone pumping a lot of fresh money into the company? If not, there may be some other angle to this.
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Old 01-13-2017, 02:38 PM   #37
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In late 2013, there were no enclosed trailers on the Camping World lot that we could pull with our 2011 Honda CRV. By choosing a lightweight Scamp13, we were able to start camping again without buying a van or truck.

With any trailer, there are acquisition costs, operating costs (fuel, tires, propane, routine maintenance, site rental, etc.), insurance costs, storage costs for non-camping time periods, and so on.

Bigger, heavier, less aerodynamic "stickies" may require higher power and less fuel efficient tow vehicles. If those tow vehicles also double as "every day drivers", those higher fuel costs continue during non-towing time periods.

We have a nomadic travel style and have thoroughly enjoyed our Scamp13 and 22mpg-while-towing SUVs for over 3 years. We have explored many scenic places around the country and met lots of nice people.

If we were making only occasional "snow birds" trips to spend winter months in southern states, then a "big rig" (even a stickie) might be a roomier and more appropriate choice for us. While we continue to make more frequent (& longer?) trips to explore scenic spots, a lighter and more aerodynamic FGRV seems like the right choice .... even with a little larger acquisition cost.

Of course, ....... YMMV! 😉

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Old 01-13-2017, 02:39 PM   #38
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An attitude of not wanting to deal with customers…
That's why I don't own a Casita.
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Old 01-13-2017, 02:42 PM   #39
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I see from the link that they are promoting the financing aspect. I don't think they will gain much from this. Financing a discretionary toy is something that is more likely to appeal to the younger less knowledgeable buyer. Those folks are less likely to recognize the advantages of fiberglass over a stick built "leaker" especially at twice the cost. To be fair, our little trailers aren't really a good match for families with kids, just too small.
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Old 01-13-2017, 02:51 PM   #40
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I still don't see what Little Guy actually brings to the table.
I'm sure it's something, but I just don't know what.
I'm in the position of "hoping to buy within a few years" so I'm really hoping that Park Liner is successful at this.
I guess we'll see.

And hey, maybe a Park Liner will show up at the RV show this year. That would be nice.
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