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Old 07-09-2010, 01:16 AM   #1
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Share your Pickup Day Surprises

I would like to hear accounts of things that weren't quite right with your build that you didn't discover until your pickup day. I am visiting SMB West on Friday July 9, one week ahead of my pickup date of July 16 to go over everything that is yet to be completed and to hopefully catch anything that needs attention while there still may be time to do something about it.

So far, everything has been going great and huge thanks go to Jonathan Feld for always sending me progress photos when I asked for them (relax billwilson, they will all be posted once the rig is finished). Having those photos was instrumental in catching one thing that could have been a major problem, but there may be details that I am overlooking.

Thanks,
Steve in L.A.
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Old 07-09-2010, 08:51 AM   #2
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Re: Share your Pickup Day Surprises

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveInLA
I would like to hear accounts of things that weren't quite right with your build that you didn't discover until your pickup day. I am visiting SMB West on Friday July 9, one week ahead of my pickup date of July 16 to go over everything that is yet to be completed and to hopefully catch anything that needs attention while there still may be time to do something about it.

So far, everything has been going great and huge thanks go to Jonathan Feld for always sending me progress photos when I asked for them (relax billwilson, they will all be posted once the rig is finished). Having those photos was instrumental in catching one thing that could have been a major problem, but there may be details that I am overlooking.

Thanks,
Steve in L.A.


exciting month for you buddy
very very cool
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Old 07-09-2010, 10:43 AM   #3
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Re: Share your Pickup Day Surprises

Steve,

I will probably see you there today. My delivery went poorly. I am back getting several issues addressed.

Yesterday they appeared to be on their "A" game hopefully they will finish well today.

From my experience I would say this. You really need to plan two days for delivery, with an option for three (all during the week while the factory is open). Here's why:

There is a lot to theses things (and I didn't even get any RV stuff). I think you really do need to get your hands on each and every thing and make sure you know how it works. You really need to read everything they give you and get all questions answered.

Then you need to leave the factory and stay at one of the crappy local campgrounds overnight and play with everything again. Then go back for more explinations on what you couldn't figure out on your own. Of course, if any issues are discovered you'll want time to have them addressed as well (that's why I think you need the option for a third day).

Unfortunately for me, that plan fell through when the van wasn't ready on time. Plan B fell through when I couldn't get to the factory before they closed to do the checkout. Plan C was to let them deliver to me out of state without a chance to crawl over the van.

I'm now back in Fresno burning my vacation that was planned to be my family's first road trip.

Lesson: If you want to be happy, you need to spend the time to be completely comfortable. Especially if you aren't local.
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Old 07-09-2010, 11:16 AM   #4
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Re: Share your Pickup Day Surprises

And I had no issues on delivery. On schedule, no problems (except driving something so BBBIIIIGGGGG for the first time.

Mike
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Old 07-09-2010, 11:39 AM   #5
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Re: Share your Pickup Day Surprises

That's too bad, Jesse.

I had no problems except for a penthouse adjustment. My build took three months, and I was in continual communication with my salesperson (Greg White was fabulous). I got pics every week, but mainly I independently researched for information on every option and accessory that was being installed, and there were a lot of them. I spec'd a lot of things myself, and even sent them some air line QD's to install in locations I stated. I never visited the shop again after the order meeting until pickup day, which went very well and that night I was camping atop Sonora Pass. And, keep in mind that SMB was maxed out building fully equipped 4x4 fords back then in '07
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Old 07-09-2010, 12:48 PM   #6
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Re: Share your Pickup Day Surprises

Our pickup day went smooth as silk. Had a friend fly us in to Fresno, where SMB had their driver meet us at the airport. The van was prepped and detailed in the alcove just off the showroom area. It looked fantastic!

There were minor issues.
  • They installed a drawer where the space was supposed to be left for me to install a microwave. This worked out much better since I never installed the microwave oven and love the drawer.

    A cut-out switch was not installed on my sound system amplifier. Immediately fixed on the spot.

    The awning brackets were not built per my instructions. Later remedied on a follow up visit.

The sales department was going through a transition period at the time but eventually all questions were answered. From my point of view any more than 3-4 hours will give you a big case of information overload. We drove home that night, stocked it up and took off for the boonies without any issues.

As for finding a local campground that isn’t “crappy”, try the search button. To the northeast, Millerton Lake is only 30 minutes away and is not bad place to camp. To the Southeast is Pine Flat Reservoir. In less than an hour you can boondock anywhere in the Sierra National Forest.

The only bummer for pickup day was having to write that big-ass check!
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Old 07-09-2010, 08:14 PM   #7
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Re: Share your Pickup Day Surprises

Our van was finished when promised and we had no problems with delivery. All systems worked perfectly and the van was full of fuel and water. You do need to pay attention at pickup. And yes the things are really big the first time you drive them.

Henry
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Old 07-09-2010, 10:20 PM   #8
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Re: Share your Pickup Day Surprises

As you can see, we've all had a wide range of experiences.

My purchase and delivery experience went very well and I've been happy with follow up service visits for stuff that I wanted added/changed/fixed.

It sounds as if you're already very informed about SMBs in general and that will be a big help in spotting any issues.

Looking back, I was a total rookie on all things SMB and RV related when I picked up our SMB. My lack of knowledge was stunning. Had I known more then, I would have built out the van differently.....but that is how things go and I've learned as I go.

IMHO, SMB should prepare a short 'intro to SMB ownership' video that they provide all new owners. There are a lot of systems on these vans and my head was spinning after the first hour.

Good luck and enjoy.
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Old 07-09-2010, 10:38 PM   #9
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Re: Share your Pickup Day Surprises

SMB West did a real nice job standing behind their product over the past two days. More to follow when I get to a real computer.

For me, reafirms scheduling plenty of time. If your SMB is perfect, sweet! Enjoy a relaxing trip home. If something isn't as expected, that's not the time to be rushed. They WILL make it right, given some time.
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Old 07-10-2010, 05:19 AM   #10
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Re: Share your Pickup Day Surprises

Thanks for all the great responses. I have several options at this point, though no option is without drawbacks. I inspected the SMB as closely as possible without a full understanding of how things like the water heater and furnace work and came up with only minor issues. I feel confident that between Sportsmobile West's quality assurance and my own keen eye, every possible glitch that can be caught has been caught. I think I will plan to return to Sportsmobile after a few camping trips and have faith that any pickup day issues will not be critical enough to interfere with driving the van to Quadvan in Portland the following week.

Steve in L.A.
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