Hi all! As many of you know, we have a 2015 Grand Design Momentum 385TH that we live full time in, traveling for Allen’s job as a broadcast tower technician. We bought this camper 3 years ago today! We thought we made a good choice.
Since the beginning, we’ve had some problems with the bedroom Schwintek slide (made by Lippert Components). We stopped at the Lippert factory in July 2016 and Emily, the Lippert/Grand Design rep, recalibrated it for us. Which is basically just syncing the motors. With the Schwintek slides, you have to move the slide all the way in or all the way out, or else the motors may get confused and you’ll have problems. In January 2017, we had the front motor replaced because we were still having problems getting it to close all the way, even with the syncing of the motors, trying to do the manual override, etc. Lately, the slide has been getting worse and more difficult to close. So when we had our annual inspection done this year, we thought we would need a new motor again. Schwintek slides are junk in my opinion so I figured the motor was just going bad again. When the mobile tech came out to look at it and do our inspection, he noticed the wall on the outside flexing when the slide moved. He said it was a structural issue and not something Discount RV Parts & Service in Hutchinson, Kansas was going to get into.
I called Grand Design and got a hold of Dewayne Jordan. I relayed that information to him and he told me we needed to take it to a Grand Design dealer for further diagnosis. We made an appointment with Four Seasons RV in Abilene, Kansas (about 100 miles away) and took it up there on Monday.
They looked at everything and found a crack in the frame. You can’t see the crack when it’s sitting on the jacks, but when it’s lifted up, as if it is hooked to the truck, ready to tow, it’s visible. That’s something I would never have thought to look for! The crack is inside the propane cubby on the driver’s side, under the Schwintek slide. They said they saw a hairline crack starting to form on the other side in the same spot.
The outside wall moves up and down as well as in and out when switching from the jacks to the truck. You can see this up and down movement from the tape lines they drew and also from the trim that separates when the camper is switched from the jacks to the pin.
Under the slide, the black surface material has ripped on the rollers, causing water to get to the plywood. And on top of the slide, the tape is all chewed up.
The pin box sags a couple of inches after the jacks hit the ground and you release it from the truck.
We had them look at our ramp door also, because the floor of the ramp is bubbling up and when you close it recently, you have to yank it to one side to get it to close, otherwise it wants to go crooked. They got some photos of that, and photos of the outside, where you can also see it’s rippling, which we didn’t notice either.
Four Seasons RV sent all the photos to Grand Design and spoke with Dewayne Jordan, explaining what they had found, and they believed it needed to go back to the factory. They told us it will just get worse the more we move, putting the slide in and out, hooking and unhooking from the truck, and bouncing down the road. So at this point, it almost feels like a liability…
I called Dewayne Jordan at Grand Design yesterday and left him a message. I’m still waiting to hear back and see what they are wanting to do. When I talked to him the first time, he told me the factory was backed up until July.
I Googled “Lippert Frame Failure”… oh my. I’m wondering what else is broken that we can’t see.
I’ll post updates as we get them!