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Old 06-03-2016, 03:33 PM   #1
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Two week impressions of our 2017 White Hawk

So we've been living with our new 28DSBH in the driveway since we picked it up, making mods, figuring out our load plan, gently introducing it to our two-year-old, and getting it ready for our maiden voyage.

I tinker with the trailer most evenings after work, and the more hands on you are the more you find gigs and manufacturing shortcuts that are sometimes trivial, other times annoying, and sometimes are downright disappointing. Is it a quality rig compared to a lot of what's out there? Everything on this and other forums suggests that it is, but if Jayco would just work to get from 90% to 100% in build quality I think it would benefit them in the longer run.

Okay, my findings so far. This IS a good trailer, we love it and we know we'll enjoy taking her out. There's nothing that makes us lament buying it or requiring us to take it to a dealer - if you're moderately handy you can tune up the trailer the way you wish Jayco's quality assurance/quality control teams would before each unit leaves the factory.

First, the stove - there was a screw missing on the largest burner so it just floated around the stove. It's a minor annoyance but a larger safety issue, easily and quickly fixed. Next, the faux chair rail moldings mounted in the slideout - lifting and chipped on both ends. Construction adhesive and the perfect mixing of stain sticks took care of that. The kitchen faucet has too much play in it - you point it at one bowl of the sink and it moseys over to the other on its own (still need to fix that). There's some shoddy fit and finish to the tub surround, and a definite lack of caulking that would only lead to headaches down the road. Again, an easy fix, I just used clear caulk to address it. There were also various nicks and scratches on several cabinets throughout the cabin, but an "Early American" Minwax stain stick matched the cabinet color perfectly and you'd never be able to find the touch ups I've done. Some plastic molding wraps in the bunk house also pulled right off, they weren't glued in place (they are now).

My biggest beef so far - the roof ladder that began to pull out of the roof on one side as I reached the top. I'm 220lbs and climb gingerly, but one of the screws had obviously stripped out during install and pulled through the Dicor caulking. The screws are not very long because there's not much roof for them to screw into (just your standard 5/8" plywood in that corner of the trailer, it seems). So I scraped away the damaged Dicor sealant, put some wood dowels and construction cement in the stripped hole, tightened the screw down and resealed with fresh Dicor. Good as new, yes, but you don't want the ladder pulling out of the roof of a brand new travel trailer - it just screams "shoddy." The skylights also seem really downmarket (one in the bath, one in the kitchen). They are so thin and flimsy that I'm pretty sure you could poke right through them without too much effort. And the bath exhaust fan? Moves zero air. It will have to be replaced.

My last complaint at this point is that we splurged on solid surface countertops which have a long streak of some kind that's in the material, it's not a surface scratch. It was hard to notice during the PDI because the counters were covered with manuals and checklists, as well as streaks and fingerprints, etc. Anyway, because these LG countertops can actually be buffed down with Scotch Brite pads to take out stains and mars, I'm not too furious about it yet - I'm hopeful I'll be able to make it much less noticeable. But it's really annoying to pay a few hundred dollars for an "upgrade" and have it make the unit look worse rather than better.

Other than that, however, and having read horror stories on this and other forums, we're counting our blessings. We've been hammered by rain and the trailer is tight as a drum. The exterior walls and cap are flawless. The AC, furnace and hot water heater all function perfectly, AND the hot water heater seems to create more than enough hot water to take a full, non-Navy shower if you're all business and not daydreaming in there. It seems to recharge quickly as well...no long waits between showers. The slide goes in an out smoothly, the awning is fabulous, the tongue jack has plenty of power, cabinet fit and finish is solid, there's ample storage inside and out, the TV and entertainment system are pretty decent, and the whole trailer tows like a dream - these are all first rate features. That's the frustrating thing, the mix of actual quality with either cheap components or lack of attention to detail.

Last thing - not a flaw, but a bothersome issue for us. The LED lights in our trailer are the COOLEST of white and GLARINGLY bright. I know it's better to have too much light than not enough on a gloomy day, and sure, you can turn off individual lights throughout the cabin, but the color is almost medicinal, hospital like. And the LED pancake lights over the master bed are like looking directly into the sun, and therefore useless. These fixtures have the LEDs integrated directly into them, they're not plug in, so you have to live with them or replace the entire fixture. If anyone has figured out how to warm these up without spending an arm and a leg, I'm all ears!
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Old 06-03-2016, 04:22 PM   #2
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Yeah, on the ladder, I wonder about it. I'm a heavy guy and I don't think I'll ever attempt it unless there's an emergency. I just got my trailer last fall but haven't had reason to get on the roof until now (I'm replacing the factory fan with a much better one).

I'm going to use an A-Frame ladder to climb up, though, because at over 300 lbs, I'm reasonably certain I don't belong on the flimsy looking ladder attached at the rear. Heck, even at 220 I'd be a bit leery about it. I'll be traveling with a compact ladder in the back of the truck so I don't have to chance it. They don't cost much and provide much peace of mind, IMO.
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Old 06-03-2016, 05:27 PM   #3
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I am about 275 and have climbed on my ladder a number of times, including putting vent covers on both vents. For the LED lights, you can get lens color sheets that you cut to fit inside the light fixture, Amazon has them. You can get them in many many different colors and intensities. The stove came from the range factory and yes it should of had all the screws in place.

We purchased a $400,000 house, and had two pages of "punch list items". so quality or lack thereof is just what people today produce....should be like that but we have a workforce that doesn't really care. Sadly a sign of our times, it's why many items are just throw away, you don't even try to repair them.
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Old 06-03-2016, 06:01 PM   #4
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We had the same problem with our 2014 rbok white hawk ladder. They do not make the end of the ladder to fit a curved roof.
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Old 06-04-2016, 06:58 AM   #5
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I have made and installed solid surface counter tops. I'm not sure how a streak would get on them unless it's in the composite. If it is on the surface it is a very easy fix with some sanding. This is the great thing about solid surface scratches etc. are easy to fix.
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Old 06-04-2016, 08:17 AM   #6
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On the bright white LEDs here is what I did.

https://www.jaycoowners.com/forums/f3...lor-35966.html
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Old 06-04-2016, 08:52 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by estesbubba View Post
On the bright white LEDs here is what I did.

https://www.jaycoowners.com/forums/f3...lor-35966.html
Cool!!
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Old 06-04-2016, 09:59 AM   #8
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Great write up. While our wish is a fiver as I posted in that part of the form, it's looking like the $45,000 HT 29.5 BHD reality will be pushing us to a $30,000 White Hawk 28DSBH. Your list is realistic, but chicken feed from our past experiences. We had a Heartland North Trail that had four pages of faults, and after the leaks weren't repaired by the factory and the slide floor rotted, the second factory repair generated a 12 page list with history and timeline proving it was in the shop 87% of the days in a year we owned it, with 45 pictures to prove the FACTORY couldn't fix their own mistakes.
The stigma I had about travel trailers being different than a house to fix was quickly relieved and I took the bull by the horns and fixed everything left undone or damaged. That said, with four trailers under my belt, I will likely never stray from Jayco again as their PDI still makes their trailers closer to a perfect 90% that no manufacturer I have seen an achieve 75%.
Most things a non-handyman can tackle if they just take their time and make a good attempt. However, I do agree that there are many things that make a person sit back and say "what were they thinking?"
Trailers are like boats. Ours are just boxes on wheels we throw money into. It's unfortunate that new translates to work and fixes before a maiden voyage, but in the end, satisfaction will prevail.
Good luck with your new unit. Please keep us posted. My wife and I are holding out for a leftover 2016 28DSBH this fall, or an early build in spring. We'd welcome your findings and fixes that pop up before we sign away.
Good luck and happy camping!
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Old 06-04-2016, 10:27 PM   #9
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"My last complaint at this point is that we splurged on solid surface countertops which have a long streak of some kind that's in the material, it's not a surface scratch. It was hard to notice during the PDI because the counters were covered with manuals and checklists, as well as streaks and fingerprints, etc. Anyway, because these LG countertops can actually be buffed down with Scotch Brite pads to take out stains and mars, I'm not too furious about it yet - I'm hopeful I'll be able to make it much less noticeable. But it's really annoying to pay a few hundred dollars for an "upgrade" and have it make the unit look worse rather than better. "

Solid surface being a non porous acrylic product will not stain. If you have poor particle distribution in the sheet I would contact LG as they have a 10 year warranty, and poor particle distribution would be included under their warranty. If it is something on the surface, then yes you may be able to remove it with sanding, depending on how "deep" the "stain" is would determine what sandpaper or scotch brit pad should be used, you want to be able to match the existing sheen. Good Luck.!
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Old 06-06-2016, 09:17 PM   #10
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Thanks wags. LG says to wet sand with Scotch Brite 7448 to remove surface scratches and then apply a good no wax polish (this is the one I'm going to try). I'll post results and perhaps some pics after I give it a shot.
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