3.7 cu fr Dometic fridge - Jan 2022 Scamp build quality?

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tray
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3.7 cu fr Dometic fridge - Jan 2022 Scamp build quality?

.In January 2022 I picked up my 16' Scamp.  We've enjoyed it and it has about 11,000 miles on it.  At this point the fridge has busted out of its mounting twice....looks like just four #8 sheet metal screws, 2 on each side, holding it in place, screwed into particleboard.  (First time I took it to Backus since I also had (2) very leaky windows.)  The last time it also broke the hinge off the door....Scamp has said they'll send me a new one (notified them in October.  Nothing here yet).

UPDATE:

HOW it broke:  Once I removed the fridge from its cubby, it was clear.....Only (3) of the 4 screws made it into the particleboard - the less-supported side broke first.  The second time, one of the screws just sheared off .  All of the screw holes show the particle board breaking apart.  (This is also why our fire extinguisher busted loose - two screws into fiberglass, one missed the wood shelf target it was supposed to hit). 

WHY it broke:  (1) Bad manufacturing method (screws into particleboard to hold a vibrating load), and (2) bad assembly technique.  Lack of quality control means I'm writing about it today.   I get the need to keep cost low, but better engineering would leave to overall cost savings.  Having to fix something twice (or more) isn't cheap.

We've enjoyed our Scamp, but we paid a premium and expected better quality/attention to detail than we've seen to date.  This is our first travel trailer. I expect stuff to go wrong - heading down a road, even just interstate, for many many miles is going to make things get loose/flop around - but that doesn't explain what I've seen (2 badly leaking windows, improperly mounted heater, stacked up trim pieces wedged under the hot water heater to support it, and more).  All our miles have been on good highways - no attempts at offroading or going places we should be!)  

 

Maybe our experience is due to a bad day in the factory, but I suspect it's more systemic than that.  Caveat emptor. 
 

 

Hoosier Scamper
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Interesting...

We are waiting on our 16 footer. We got the Deluxe and the 6.0 fridge. Is yours a Standard or Deluxe model?

Carl

tray
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Ours is a 16" standard,

Ours is a 16" standard, layout 4.  A/C, heater, fridge, dual propane tanks.  

Tom

theremin
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So far, our 2022 13 foot

So far, our 2022 13 foot standard has been fine.  No major issues, and very few minor ones.  But I do expect to eventually have some problems with the screws going into particle board, or more like coming out of the particle board.

But I have a couple of friends with new campers (not fiberglass), and very expensive ones at that, who have had MAJOR problems with their new campers.  One of these has been in the shop for a good part of the year.  Had to have a new roof, the frame is twisted causing problems with the slide outs, etc. etc.  They're going to end up in arbitration over it since the factory has not been helpful.  I think that the increased demand for RVs during COVID and difficulty in finding good employees has caused a quality problem across the industry.

Again, at least so far I've been pleased with the quality of our Scamp.  From all I've seen, Scamp's quality control is better than average for the industry.  The only thing I've had to do to it at this point is tighten the lug nuts--they were not at all tight coming from the factory, and I'm lucky I didn't lose a wheel between the factory and the Pine Lake campground a few miles away.  Check those lugs!

Dave

Camper to Scamper
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THANK YOU DAVE~

Great suggestion. Would not have thought of that...

Paul O.
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It is not necessary to go off

It is not necessary to go off-road to find out how many things can get loose in a Scamp. Just take the road to Chaco Canyon in NM. The road map shows it a a dirt road, but it is not dirt, it is the bedrock! After our first trip there I stopped when we reached the paved road and then spent almost an hour, stabilizing and fixing what I could. Then had a few projects when we got home.

Epoxy is good to prevent screws from pulling out of particle board. Large "body washers" help where screws may pull through the fiber board that is used on the cabinets. Fixing an keeping after the lose ends is part of the trailer camping business, I'd say.

-Paul
2004 Scamp 19 Deluxe,
2021 Tacoma, Double Cab, 6 cyl. 4WD
Colorado

tray
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Stuff getting loose....

I expect stuff to get loose.  Good tip to use epoxy/locktite etc.  (Using thru bolts and nuts is higher quality than just screws into material, but labor costs add up quick and it's not always practical.)

Before we got our Scamp, I didn't know diddly about RV trailers.  I went to an RV show (in Green Bay, WI) and was appalled by the poor quality of many of the units there.  In comparison, I think the Scamp is still a superior value than many alternatives out there.  I do believe tighter QC would improve their product further, but all that stuff costs money and labor in Backus, MN is probably tight like everywhere.

 

And in response to my original post above, I did get a replacement door for the fridge last week, reinstalled it (using solid pine stringers and making sure all 4 screws are into the wood) and am planning the next trip to someplace warmer than Wisconsin.  

 

Tom

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YIKES!

This is not good news for those of us with one on order. :( Would a super-thorough look-through help at all before taking ownership? Camping within 25 miles - to return as needed if/when something is noticed? Suggestions welcome!

ac0gv
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Scamp walk through

When I picked mine up (2017)  I had heard the stories of little quality control. They did do an extensive walk through with me and found a loose screw in the awning, nothing else. I spent my first night, with hookups,  at Lake Itasca, the start of the Mississippi river. The second night was boondocking at 6 mile lake (free dispersed camping). Both are several miles from Backus but still in northern Minnesota. Nothing fell apart until South Dakota after I had put on a LOT of miles. The LEDs fell out of the reading lamps, and the furnace grill fell off the furnace, Both easy fixes. I was parked overnight at a Cabelas store (Mitchell I think ) and when it was light I looked out the window to see a Menards store across the street. I RTVed the LEDs back in and used longer screws for the grill. BTW, I believe the quality to be even better now with the changes that have been made in recent years.

 

 

ac0gv
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When do you pick it up?

If it is in July, you could attend the "SCAMP HOME COMING RALLY"

https://www.scamptrailers.com/product/scamp-rally-sites-moondance-electric

tray
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Re. YIKES!

A look-thru can't hurt, but nothing was wrong at the moment we picked ours up.  It's just that several hundred highway miles will vibrate a lot of stuff which serves as the real-world test as to how well it's put together.  And, I guess you have to expect that things WILL come loose here and there so ongoing maintenance of a different sort will be required.

If you do want a nice campground a short distance away, the Gull Lake COE campground (Gull Lake Rec. Area) is very nice and about a 45 minute drive south of Backus.

 

Tom

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