Jump to content
jeff753

Allowing Towables Vote At Indianapolis In July

Recommended Posts

Not to sure about the RV industry being in the tank. A month ago lead time for a new Villa couch was 10 weeks, this past week it is now out to 16 weeks. I also got a bid for a new paint job and the first time I can get it done is during the Dec through March time frame.

There is a huge market for older coach remodels because a lot of the new coaches are full of fuu fuu and no substance

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I suspect there is a trailing edge effect from the 2008 economic downturn when it comes to the number of motorhomes on the road as that production gap in 2008-2013 or so models trickles its way down the used market.  Leaving a supply gap of recent model used units and older good condition units.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, Isaaac1 said:

 

I suspect there is a trailing edge effect from the 2008 economic downturn when it comes to the number of motorhomes on the road

 

I doubt this is a significant number when compared to the total number on the road. I still don't see that many Class "C" or "B" coaches at events.

In Chandler I don't recall seeing any class C coaches and only a few B coaches. Some one has the numbers.  Management needs to stop making excuses and start getting the job done.

Bill 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Perhaps the lack of class B and class C owners may again be due to a set of benefits that primarily appeal to full timers and snow birders who tend to own class A's with their larger size and greater cargo capacity.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My only real comment on growth vs allowing towables is this. Local Chapters need to be where we grow. We've been members for ten years. Last year we finally got the time to attend an Annual. We have yet to make any chapter rally. We did join one but our schedules never seemed to align, often they were scheduled for the week, not the weekend. If we are looking for more and particularly younger members we need to pay attention to this. KIDS go to school during hte week, Adults generally WORK during the week. Summers are the prime time for RV use. A rally in early spring with kids in school likely means that school sports conflict. Same for fall. Expecting parents and kids to travel outside of a few non-summer weeks is a false hope. Growth will not be found inthe 60-80 age group. I hate to say this, but we older people are a dead end. I'm 64 so I figure I can probably RV for maybe 15 more years, I might be a lucky one and have 20 years. I know I don't have 30 or 40. We need to find a way to attract people that are south of 50, better yet, south of 40. Then you have prospects of 40+ year members. It may sound a bit harsh, but life is at times harsh. The reality is we need people to replace the ones that have left us. and the younger we get them, the longer we have them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My point is if they can't attract significant numbers of "C" owners who tend to be younger. How are they going to attract owners of pull behinds? The "B" class coaches tend to be more expensive and more likely owned by people downsizing. But there again they arn't doing a good job of attracting them. 

Bill

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bill, I agree. We have not tapped nearly all the owners of self-propelled RVs. If we have been told NO but everyone that drives their RV then we have to consider two things, A) What aren't we offering that would attract them? and B). Why not? If we can't attract all the non- members that drive, why do we think we'll be successful attracting and retaining members from the tow-behind segment of the industry?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Majority of Snow Birders that I see rolling down I-95 or I-75 or I-35 to Hwy 77S are not in big Class A's!  Lot's of B's, some C's and also Class A gassers.  Maybe 15% are DP's of 40 foot plus!  That's of the Motor Homes...Towable is 4 to one against Coaches!  Back to demographics!

FMCA has never been a large club...Since it's beginning, 50+ years ago we have only issued 458,000+ F#'s and 2,500+ L#'s!  We never re-issue some one else's # unless it's to a family member!  What has changed all of a sudden in the last 2 years? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

FMCA has not "farmed" the class B&C markets. The only reason I can think of is the old adage of "that's the way we have always done it". What has worked in the past wil not work in the future and the answer is not the towable market.

The conventions are loaded with 40ft plus coaches and very few B and C class coaches because all the manufacturers want to sell the big ones for the profit margin. Maybe the conventions should have a better mix of coaches.More and more people are downsizing and looking in the 24 to 34 foot range and they aren't there

Just a couple of thoughts after happy hour.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, manholt said:

Majority of Snow Birders that I see rolling down I-95 or I-75 or I-35 to Hwy 77S are not in big Class A's!  Lot's of B's, some C's and also Class A gassers.  

Iinteresting you say that.  It supports my theory about B and C coaches in a way.  I think there is a "regional" thing because in this neck of the woods the B and C market tend to be single/ young couples (with/without small children) who are nomadic weekend warriors in a sense (city dwellers) and/or older couples not looking to take much with them and looking for something simple and easy to drive.  

8 hours ago, manholt said:

 Maybe 15% are DP's of 40 foot plus!  That's of the Motor Homes...Towable is 4 to one against Coaches!  Back to demographics!

So with this information from Manholt and my personal theory the question remains, what benefit does FMCA have for these folks who gravitate to smaller coach units much less towables? The benefits that are offered are gold to those who have larger coaches who made travel over great distances. The benefits will help him and or get them out of trouble. For someone who travels a lot on the weekend close to home or their coach may move three or four times a year it doesn't help them very much. 

To capture the market of Class B and Class C coaches the benefit for tires has to be a partnership with Walmart or some type of National Tire chain not necessarily Michelin. 

These people are probably going to go with some type of roadside assistance that covers their car and their motor coach for a reasonable price. Triple-A probably can handle that aspect of life for them a bit less expensive than FMCA.

The glass coverage and some of the insurance may or may not be what these people are looking for. The FMCA assist may be the only thing some of the older families would take advantage of but again you have to justify the cost of FMCA membership versus that one benefit.

I'm not exactly sure if it's possible simply because of the size of FMCA but the biggest benefit to everybody specifically your younger families and those who have your smaller B and C coaches is a fuel discount with a major supplier. That comes with a cost I am sure membership cost would rise, but if that attracts enough new members, it may not.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Keon.  Good morning.

You got it.  For me, rolling in a large coach is ok for most of the US, but as I'm getting older, I'm starting to see the benefit of a 40' tag.  Also, my lady and I want to go into the maritime region and Alaska again!  Last time I did that, was in a 32 foot Class A.  Linda did it in a 34 footer.  Looking back, the last time that I saw a lot of "B's and C's" at National rally, was in 2014 at Redmond, OR.

22.5 tires don't do a 24 footer much good !:lol:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, manholt said:

22.5 tires don't do a 24 footer much good

Or a trailer that is sitting on 15's that you can purchase at Tractor Supply for $150 with a new wheel, even comes with free air :lol: 

We are a family of 4 both working and in our 40's in a 41' DP. I have to be honest, the ONLY benefit I get is the Magazine and comradery amongst other members, she gets nothing. No travel discounts, No campground discounts, No fuel discounts, Roadside assistance you pay for. That needs to change and advertise it. Give us younger motorhome people something to sell to younger crowds. Wife saw the cost to renew, she asked me why am I paying so much for a Magazine :wacko: hmmm....because I like the articles.

We were considering joining a local chapter, haven't done it yet as all of their weekends are geared toward empty nesters at places in the middle of no where with nothing to do in that area, what do I do with two teens? Needless to say that has been put on the back burner along with a rally. Tried to plan on attending a rally, wife has asked me numerous times, what are we (her and the kids) to do while you are at seminars? She has also reminded me that this would be family vacation time that we would be spending apart and isn't the point of a family vacation and a RV to spend time together? For me to attend a rally I might take the week off without pay and go by myself, when its reasonably close to home or wait a few years until the kids are both out.

This is my situation, I'm sure others in similar situations have similar hurdles to overcome.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Joe, your DW have some very valid points. Most people in your age bracket have the same problems. Do you have friends that have motor homes with the same issues? You could get together for a few outings locally over some weekends. They may have friends that you may or may not know in the same boat. Then maybe you all could camp together. Your wife could meet other ladies and your kids could make friends from different areas. Then you might be able to come up with enough couples to start a Chapter of WEFs, (Week End Friends) :) This is just how FMCA began. A group of friends camped together and one day in 1963, in Hinkley, Ohio they decided there might be others that might enjoy the comradely of friends and began to organize into an association. (Sorry if I para fazed this a bit but you get the idea)

Stay with us, your kids have at least 50,000 adoptive Grand Parents that would love to me them. Who knows the kids might teach us things we never knew.

Herman  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Forgot to mention, we have two other families with the same problem as us with motorhomes, one is still green and I believe he is beginning to see it now. Believe me I search for others every trip out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Herman.  The kids could refresh our memories, we all used to be there, but as you grow older you just shake your head and say, we didn't do that!  Or, Lord the kids today?  Well, we where in a different era, but we still did the same things...just with no computer or cell  phones! :lol::P

Keon comes to mind..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One night sitting around the fire with my sons family and several other young family's ( friends of my son and his wife ) And all towable owners with young kids. I brought up FMCA and was immediately told by my son there is nothing in FMCA that benefits us and all his freinds agreed with him they said it's just a club for old people with motorhomes. They don't care about the rally's don't need any road assistance tire are easy to change yourself they don't worry about getting sick and needing a way home I couldn't come up with a good argument why they should join I was totally outnumbered by them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Understand,  the yonger families have very valid points for their age group. While the older folks also have their valid points also. 

Young families have their close friends and most are through their children. Sports, School and Church. We went through the same times of our life. But as the children grew and left and friends scattered across the country our live changed as well. 

Now we have new friends all across this beautiful country of ours that we met through our association with FMCA and our chapter. 

So neither groups are wrong,  they are both right for their time in life. 

I feel Blessed to have had both times I'm my life. 

Herman 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You got it Herman. so the question is why are some people obsessed with trying to convince someone who has no interest in joining. There is no money at the end of that trail. Only money their is what they wasted  on a useless adventure down a path you don't need to explore !!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As an empty nester, I feel in between on these issues, sure there is a lack of family activities, but from what I have read there is also a lack of activities at the rallies geared towards even people in my age range (coming up on 50 very soon).  My wife who works full time as an administrator at a local public agency sees the "ladies activities" in the rally promotional material and has no interest in any of it, of course she is not into arts and crafts stuff much anyway, unlike her sisters.  Still to people like us these activities sound like things that should be on the event planner for a local elderly activity center.  This is not to say that white water rafting is our thing, however we did enjoy a nice leisurely guided half day float trip down a river in Saratoga, Wyoming last summer where the guide did all the rowing.  This is not to say activities have to be outdoors, museums can be nice too, and then there is a whole movement in this country towards activity classes where people do things like learn to cook chili, or perhaps something a little less digestively sensitive (I am almost 50 after all, and have my collection of medication I take daily including stuff for acid reflux)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Isaaac1.  My take is now and always...if you don't use it, you lose it.  That goes for any activity!  I'm 74 years old and active as I can be, I take no prescription pills...I drink beer and wine, I also smoke!  Put me in a raft and I'll paddle with anyone who will let me.  To my knowledge and Herman's , he's 80, this is the only time we get to live life...no second chance and we are both bound and determined to do it to the max!

When I and my DW, joined FMCA, I was 30, she was 31...we did not know each other, until I was 35 and she was 43.  In the 14 years we had together, we went to every FMCA Convention and most of the rally's of the Chapters we belonged to...Texas Outlaws, Triple T's and Apollo!  We where the youngest members and had a blast.  I love golf, fishing, hunting and card games...guess what?  So does most others..part or all of it.  Age transcend all age groups, if you have a open mind and are willing to try. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Manholt, I may be only 2/3rd your age, but I do understand and agree with much of that philosophy, if not those exact choices.  I suffered from a fall where I broke my back in 2010 (Compression fracture of L2) and ever since I have been on a slow road to recovery making improvements each year.  Although still not 100% it is getting closer, although each year the rate of improvement drops.  I would not wish the experience upon anyone, it has lead to a certain appreciation of small achievements, such as the first time one is able to reach to tie their shoes, or bend down to pick up dropped keys without several seconds of maneuvering, or being able to run after a piece of paper the wind as caught (just taking a few running steps really, bending down and catching it is a whole other accomplishment).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ouch...wish I had known.:( you have my full attention.  My best friend in Kaplan, LA. has been down that road and I went thru it with him for 6 years!  Cajuns do know how to scream!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Been watching the views and points now for several months. My 2cents...

We joined the FMCA when we decided to buy a motor home because the FMCA is an association for owners of motor homes.....  Belong to more than one Chapter .. Have attended Nat'l, Mid-West Area, and many local chapter rallies throughout the mid-west, snowbird chapter friends luncheons in FL during some winters and chapter snowbird friends luncheon in AZ when in that area. Volunteer at most rallies. Have learned from the seminars and educational opportunities offered at the rallies, and made many friends from all around the US. Continue to enjoy several of those friendships outside of organized FMCA or Chapter rallies. Have used the Michelin Tire program and saved over $300 on tires for my Navigator, and $500 on tires for the motor home. Have have 6 friends join because of our common interests.   Certainly gained information from this forum... My membership expectations have been met .....

 I hope the FMCA remains an organization for motor homes as I believe the needs, expectations, and characteristics are unique enough to continue with the mission as it has been. I see no reason to become one of the other alternatives to all modes of camping nor to change a course to become nothing special and try to compete as a mass seeking organization.

That being said... I feel there are things that FMCA could do better to benefit and attract additional new members. .

I like the programs already available to members...but ... I've mention a couple times (and done nothing further) that I believe the FMCA organization would be a good avenue to collect/assemble input from members on how poor some sections of roadways or hywys in general are being maintained and communicate a complied priority rating to State or Federal DOT representatives..I would love to put them in a steel wheeled wagon and give them a ride on some of the roads they ignore as they are spending billions in roadway and intersection landscaping and decorations. Maybe they don't know how poor some of their roads are and need their eyes opened... Maybe the state and county tourism departments should receive a rating from motor homers on places motor homes to avoid traveling to because of the roadway risks and potential; damage to our equipment.

The possible Cellular / internet program being worked on is a GREAT idea....

The possibility of a diesel / gasoline national discount program is a great idea.....

Maybe there is potential for service repair discounts for Onan generators?  Aqua-hot systems? Other routine maintenance services?

Member discounts for common purchased items? Water filters? Portable water softeners? Motorhome TV's ? Antenna systems ? Tow bars? Braking Systems? GPS units? Cleaners / waxes / fluids? Fire extinguishers ?  Motorhome security systems ?

Expand the campground discount opportunities - or maybe co-ordinate a FMCA "Boondockers Welcome" site for 1 night stay-over spots while traveling ?

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is our first year as a member of FMCA and our 10th year members of Good Sams.  We just renew our GS membership since the savings on fuel and camping more than pays for membership but we don't go any of the GS functions.  We talked about FMCA and at this point we have decided to drop them with the membership expires.  We attended a local FMCA chapter rally and they just sat around tell stories of the great adventures they had the past but no real plans for the future other than the next rally.  We are into traveling and meeting people and visiting new places not going back to the same parks over and over. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...