Quality Issues | MotorhomeFun | The Motorhome Support and Social Network

Quality Issues

Aug 6, 2013
8,641
7,797
Kendal, Cumbria
Funster No
27,352
MH
A Class
Exp
since 1999
This stuff, although found in my current motorhome, could be found in most in my (past) experience.

Switches. I know that the Continentals often fit switches differently to the UK. And that's fine. What is not fine is fitting them at random. In mine the living area switches are down for on except for the awning light which is up for on. The bath / shower area (3 switches) are all up for on but the bedroom is down for on.

Screws and their installation. I admit to having removed and replaced a few in the course of a few mods. Every one (countersunk whether required or not) is driven halfway through the 'wood'. The resulting hole is covered with a little adhesive dot that matches the rest of the surface. When removed it lifts and damages the surface and that prevents the dot from sticking down flat. The point of using a CSK screw in the first place is that it sits flush with the surface it's driven in to. I said whether required or not: attaching something made of plastic that doesn't have CSK holes by using CSK screw risks splitting the plastic. I say 'risks' but given the average ham-fisted assembly attempts by the converter it's a certainty. Screws used to attach one piece of wood to another might be expected to be of consistent length and diameter? Not likely - just grab a handful from the mixed screws box & carry on.

Cable and pipe restraint. Usually by means of various sizes of grey plastic clips. They're fitted at random intervals and are rarely in a straight line even when that is the intent. When boredom sets in they randomise the screw (CSK!) position by alternating from side to side of the cable bunch or pipe.

There'll be more when I'm sufficiently irritated to risk boring anyone daft enough to read it.
 

kip

Apr 26, 2015
587
395
Bulphan
Funster No
36,064
MH
A class
Exp
2000
Blimey, you've described our le voyageur to the Tee ( apart from the fridge issues).Ours is a 2010 model so no change there then. Still love it though, best van we've owned.
 
OP
tonyidle
Aug 6, 2013
8,641
7,797
Kendal, Cumbria
Funster No
27,352
MH
A Class
Exp
since 1999
Blimey, you've described our le voyageur to the Tee ( apart from the fridge issues).Ours is a 2010 model so no change there then. Still love it though, best van we've owned.
I suspect it applies to most vans - maybe not the £150K+ versions but I wouldn't bet on it. I love my 2012 but like you I'm not blind to its faults. I have fridge issues too - just about to have the refrigeration unit replaced - under warranty fortunately.

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kip

Apr 26, 2015
587
395
Bulphan
Funster No
36,064
MH
A class
Exp
2000
Good luck with the fridge. We have a few niggerly issues to put right ie: laminate coming away from the shower were the door meets the shower tray, needs re sticking,new shower hose but that's just down to general wear & tear.She is 8 years old now so can't really complain lol..20180514_173622.jpg We hope to be go back down to Spain again this winter & we're going to pop into the le voyageur factory at Angers to have a look around, may even get some bits & pieces.
 
Jun 30, 2011
3,696
4,153
Durham
Funster No
17,128
MH
Concorde Concerto A class
Exp
Since 2011
I have read the older, up to 2006, Le Voyageurs were much better built than the new ones, much like every other make then.
 
OP
tonyidle
Aug 6, 2013
8,641
7,797
Kendal, Cumbria
Funster No
27,352
MH
A Class
Exp
since 1999
This stuff, although found in my current motorhome, could be found in most in my (past) experience.

Switches. I know that the Continentals often fit switches differently to the UK. And that's fine. What is not fine is fitting them at random. In mine the living area switches are down for on except for the awning light which is up for on. The bath / shower area (3 switches) are all up for on but the bedroom is down for on.

Screws and their installation. I admit to having removed and replaced a few in the course of a few mods. Every one (countersunk whether required or not) is driven halfway through the 'wood'. The resulting hole is covered with a little adhesive dot that matches the rest of the surface. When removed it lifts and damages the surface and that prevents the dot from sticking down flat. The point of using a CSK screw in the first place is that it sits flush with the surface it's driven in to. I said whether required or not: attaching something made of plastic that doesn't have CSK holes by using CSK screw risks splitting the plastic. I say 'risks' but given the average ham-fisted assembly attempts by the converter it's a certainty. Screws used to attach one piece of wood to another might be expected to be of consistent length and diameter? Not likely - just grab a handful from the mixed screws box & carry on.

Cable and pipe restraint. Usually by means of various sizes of grey plastic clips. They're fitted at random intervals and are rarely in a straight line even when that is the intent. When boredom sets in they randomise the screw (CSK!) position by alternating from side to side of the cable bunch or pipe.

There'll be more when I'm sufficiently irritated to risk boring anyone daft enough to read it.
More to add: I decided to sort out a rattle - more like a drumming - that occurs over certain road surfaces. It turned out to be the heavy plastic cover that fills the gap between where the Sprinter dashboard ends and the bottom of the A Class windscreen. So I removed it. It was held on by 6 flanged spline-drive screws along the sides and two Pozidrive woodscrews (woodscrews!!!) at the edge nearest the driver - and lots of adhesive stuck to nothing. The edge nearest the screen was held with black rubberised adhesive which had to be cut to release it. Or at least the 12" still adhering needed to be cut. Having removed the cover I discovered another 2" wide strip of plastic laid flat below the windscreen.

This had been fitted by creating little hillocks of the by now familiar black adhesive and pressing the plastic onto them. They hadn't stuck to the plastic either. Plenty of opportunity for rattles. IMO the cover could need to be removed in future as there are two Alde heating radiators under it. They had bleed screws (probably 1/2" in diameter) facing down towards the engine compartment. 3" holes had been cut to clear the bleed screws covered on the underside by foam with a cross cut into it. One 1/2" bleed screw stub managed to just clear the edge of its 3" hole but the other didn't and was therefore inaccessible. This surprised me because although each radiator was held by two screws at each end there were many screw holes that indicated failed attempts at finding just the right position. Four sets of two holes each required a total of 4 + 3 + 2 + 2 attempts made before finalising the positions (22 holes of which 8 were in use). And still they missed the bleed holes. Releasing the radiators & 3 pipe clips revealed that they could be moved 2" in any direction so hitting the bleed holes was easy.

So: I glued heavy 6mm rubber sheet to the GRP exposed beneath the cover with 20mm holes for the bleed screws punched in positions to suit the centre of the 3" holes below. The rubber was pre-fitted with screws for the radiators & pipe clips. I drilled evenly spaced holes in the front plastic strip and provided rivnuts and levelling spacers below the holes. Several large blobs of Sikaflex now hold the plastic strip (after I'd cleaned off the release agent so my adhesive would stick) and tiny black-painted L-brackets are attached to the cover to hold the front edge via machine screws through the plastic strip and into the rivnuts. It can now be removed without damage or adhesive cutting. And it doesn't rattle.

Bathroom cupboard doors. These are mirrored doors with a strip of silvering missing to allow a strip of blue LEDs on each door to shine through. A nice bit of bling that lasted a couple of months before the twin cable feeding one of the strips broke where it was flexing. Flush with the little hole in the rear of the door. Sourcing something more flexible with flexible insulation was easy but the mirror had to be removed from the door to fit it. The mirrors were held on with double-sided tape so removal was time-consuming but not too difficult. I did both doors so that's another job jobbed.

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funflair

LIFE MEMBER
Dec 11, 2013
12,471
13,048
Guisborough
Funster No
29,351
MH
Nothing ATM
Exp
since 2012
Bleed screws facing down doesn't sound terribly effective, The drumming I recognised from the dashboard on our Flair, there is a big plastic moulded "plenum" underneath the dashboard top that connects the original heater vents to the screen in its new "forward position" as this "plenum" was loose it was banging and driving us mad, the whole dashboard top is on with big wood screws which I was surprised at but the insulation between the dashboard and engine is good.

The rest of the van I have been most impressed with in terms of design, build, assembly and accesability.

Martin
 
Jun 10, 2010
2,788
4,039
Shrewsbury (sometimes)
Funster No
12,013
MH
A Class
Exp
2006
I have read the older, up to 2006, Le Voyageurs were much better built than the new ones, much like every other make then.
I tend to agree but question the year, I think it went wrong in the 07/08 recession when a lot of craftsmen were laid off and many firms 'merged' and we ended up with a version of the old BL style badge engineering, where some previously respected marques are no longer the quality item they used to be.

Sorry to be so negative about it but with another German recession looming and the looming death of the small diesel engine, it makes me wonder what is going to happen this time.

Jon
 
Apr 27, 2008
8,546
6,164
Eastbourne East Sussex
Funster No
2,327
MH
A Class
Exp
Since 1972
Interesting about the switches. The washroom switches on my Rapido are also up for on where all the others are down. Could this be a consistent French thing?

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GJH

LIFE MEMBER
Aug 20, 2007
28,525
35,887
Acklam, Teesside, originally Glossop
Funster No
127
MH
Burstner t625 Harmony
Exp
Since 2006
Could some switches be up for on because they are in a position where it is easy to catch them by mistake and drain the battery by leaving something on without realising?
 
OP
tonyidle
Aug 6, 2013
8,641
7,797
Kendal, Cumbria
Funster No
27,352
MH
A Class
Exp
since 1999
Could some switches be up for on because they are in a position where it is easy to catch them by mistake and drain the battery by leaving something on without realising?
Not really. Mine are all flat rockers (probably the result of a motorcycle accident) and they're well tucked away. I suspect, like many other parts of the van, it was simply lack of interest and care during assembly. They're more likely to be left on because of assumptions about the off position.
 
Reactions: GJH
Jul 5, 2013
8,061
6,624
Tunbridge Wells
Funster No
26,797
MH
A class
Exp
Since 2013
Re the switches. Most are modular Just take them off and turn them the other way up.

Hymer fitted my UK socket in the garage upside down, i.e. earth at the bottom. Took 10 minutes to sort out.

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