Hello from Chagrin Falls, Ohio - Dutchmen Owners

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Old 08-13-2016, 09:56 PM   #1
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Hello from Chagrin Falls, Ohio

Hello everyone,
New forum member here, just wanted to say hi.
20 years camping in tents, and on my second TT in the last seven years.
I currently own a 2011 Coachman Freedom Express 295RLDS. ( I am very active on the Forest River fourms and hope to be here)
The coachman layout is not as comfortable at our seasonal site as it was when we towed it around so the wife and I are looking at the Dutchman Denali 325RL.
I am hoping to get some good and bad reviews on this particular model and information on the Dutchman quality issues and problems some of you have encountered.
Thanks for having me and happy camping.
crunchman12001
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Old 08-13-2016, 10:18 PM   #2
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Are you lucky??? I just purchased the 325RL last November and love it. We spent May and June traveling around the Midwest and the roads were horrific but the 325 held together just fine. We did have to replace the AC under warranty early in the year. The bad point is we had THREE blowouts on our trip that cost me over $700 and was only ably to recover $276 from the tire manufacturer. And on Monday, I'm spending another $334 to have all the remaining tires replaced. I highly recommend you insist on the dealer replacing the Load Range D's with Load Range E's. Check under mods for all the neat things I've done to mine. Will be glad to provide the specifics if you want to do any of them.
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Old 08-13-2016, 10:57 PM   #3
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Are you lucky??? I just purchased the 325RL last November and love it. We spent May and June traveling around the Midwest and the roads were horrific but the 325 held together just fine. We did have to replace the AC under warranty early in the year. The bad point is we had THREE blowouts on our trip that cost me over $700 and was only ably to recover $276 from the tire manufacturer. And on Monday, I'm spending another $334 to have all the remaining tires replaced. I highly recommend you insist on the dealer replacing the Load Range D's with Load Range E's. Check under mods for all the neat things I've done to mine. Will be glad to provide the specifics if you want to do any of them.
Hi Handyman,
Glad to hear you like your 325RL. We really like the looks and layout of that model. Did you go with the dark or tan chairs and couch, and how do you like it?
I hope to see one soon but the closest dealer that has one is 2.5 hours away.
Sorry to hear you had china bomb problems. I upgraded the tires on my Coachman to Maxxis m8008's and like them. I will install the same if we get the Denali.
I have done many mods to the Coachman and enjoy the work. I will definitely check out yours.
Thank you for your reply.
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2011 Coachman Freedom Express 295RLDS
Progressive Industries (EMS) EMS-PT30C
Equal-i-zer 4-Point Sway Control - 12,000 lbs GTW, 1,200 lbs TW
2015 F-250 FX4 SD 6.2L Gas 4WD SuperCab XL 3.73 rear
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Old 08-14-2016, 01:20 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by crunchman12001 View Post
Hi Handyman,
Glad to hear you like your 325RL. We really like the looks and layout of that model. Did you go with the dark or tan chairs and couch, and how do you like it?
I hope to see one soon but the closest dealer that has one is 2.5 hours away.
Sorry to hear you had china bomb problems. I upgraded the tires on my Coachman to Maxxis m8008's and like them. I will install the same if we get the Denali.
I have done many mods to the Coachman and enjoy the work. I will definitely check out yours.
Thank you for your reply.
I got the dark brown only because that was all our local dealer had. I did my online research and had zeroed in on the 325RL. One was here and I would have had to drive to Indiana to look at another so a no brainer. The 325 does not come with table between the two recliners so that was the first thing I built. I looked everywhere trying to buy one narrow enough but I couldn't so I built one. As a side note, while building the cabinet, and after 50+ years of working with power tools, my index finger got into the miter saw and did $55,000 worth of damage. Of course my insurance covered most of the cost.

Good luck
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Old 08-14-2016, 03:34 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Handyman View Post
I got the dark brown only because that was all our local dealer had. I did my online research and had zeroed in on the 325RL. One was here and I would have had to drive to Indiana to look at another so a no brainer. The 325 does not come with table between the two recliners so that was the first thing I built. I looked everywhere trying to buy one narrow enough but I couldn't so I built one. As a side note, while building the cabinet, and after 50+ years of working with power tools, my index finger got into the miter saw and did $55,000 worth of damage. Of course my insurance covered most of the cost.

Good luck
Ouch, that sure is an expensive table you built. I did see the individual chairs on some models but it would seem most of the 2017 models are being ordered with the theater seating which I would prefer.
Couple of questions:
Is your front cap painted or the gel coat? Many of the darker gel coat front caps on the Forest Rivers have fading issues. Does Dutchman have this worked out. I did see the option for the painted front caps. I noticed much of the dark color is now light on the later built 2016's and 2017's front caps not sure if fading is the issue for the change?
Did you get the standard sofa (fold out with air mattress?) or the trifold sleeper sofa? The specs say sleeps 5 but I still cannot figure where the 5th person would sleep?
What are you towing yours with?
Edit: What slide system does dutchman use? LCI, Schwintek, or the BAL/Norco cable system?
Thank you in advance for your reply.
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2011 Coachman Freedom Express 295RLDS
Progressive Industries (EMS) EMS-PT30C
Equal-i-zer 4-Point Sway Control - 12,000 lbs GTW, 1,200 lbs TW
2015 F-250 FX4 SD 6.2L Gas 4WD SuperCab XL 3.73 rear
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Old 08-15-2016, 12:15 AM   #6
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Mine appears to be painted.

Mine still looks good after nearly a year in the South Florida sun.

I have the trifold sleeper that will sleep 3 comfortably.

I'm towing with an F250 diesel.

I'm not sure of the slide manufacturers but the living and bedroom slides are cable system and the kitchen is the same as my other Denali, a worm gear system.
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Old 08-15-2016, 02:31 AM   #7
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Mine appears to be painted.

Mine still looks good after nearly a year in the South Florida sun.

I have the trifold sleeper that will sleep 3 comfortably.

I'm towing with an F250 diesel.

I'm not sure of the slide manufacturers but the living and bedroom slides are cable system and the kitchen is the same as my other Denali, a worm gear system.
Glad to hear your front cap is holding up. Thank you for the information on the slides.
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Progressive Industries (EMS) EMS-PT30C
Equal-i-zer 4-Point Sway Control - 12,000 lbs GTW, 1,200 lbs TW
2015 F-250 FX4 SD 6.2L Gas 4WD SuperCab XL 3.73 rear
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Old 08-15-2016, 01:32 PM   #8
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Here are the most useful mods I've made to my 325RL.
My 2016 had no support for about 12 inches at the foot of the bed, thus we could not sit there to put on shoes, etc. Maybe they corrected that blunder for the 17 models. If not, you will definitely want to do something similar to my bed mod below.

It is a tight squeeze getting by the foot of the bed. My bed head board came below the mattress so I moved it above the mattress and gained about an inch which doesn't seem like much but made a noticeable difference.

http://www.dutchmenowners.org/forums...over-4112.html
http://www.dutchmenowners.org/forums...-box-3808.html
http://www.dutchmenowners.org/forums...oist-4227.html
http://www.dutchmenowners.org/forums...-mod-3867.html
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Old 08-16-2016, 02:14 AM   #9
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And one more:

http://www.dutchmenowners.org/forums...rage-3776.html
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Old 08-16-2016, 02:33 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Handyman View Post
Here are the most useful mods I've made to my 325RL.
My 2016 had no support for about 12 inches at the foot of the bed, thus we could not sit there to put on shoes, etc. Maybe they corrected that blunder for the 17 models. If not, you will definitely want to do something similar to my bed mod below.

It is a tight squeeze getting by the foot of the bed. My bed head board came below the mattress so I moved it above the mattress and gained about an inch which doesn't seem like much but made a noticeable difference.

http://www.dutchmenowners.org/forums...over-4112.html
http://www.dutchmenowners.org/forums...-box-3808.html
http://www.dutchmenowners.org/forums...oist-4227.html
http://www.dutchmenowners.org/forums...-mod-3867.html
Hey Handyman,
I have not got to see this model in person yet but really like the floor plan. You are scaring me with the tight squeeze in the bedroom between the wall and the bed. That is the way my Coachman is and it makes me crazy. I gonna have to make the 2.5 hour drive to see it in person.
Nice mods, same kind of stuff I like doing. Thanks again for your replies.
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Progressive Industries (EMS) EMS-PT30C
Equal-i-zer 4-Point Sway Control - 12,000 lbs GTW, 1,200 lbs TW
2015 F-250 FX4 SD 6.2L Gas 4WD SuperCab XL 3.73 rear
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Old 08-16-2016, 08:20 PM   #11
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Newbie from New Hampshire

After my son decided that he wanted an RV of his own (2017 Lantern LT17FQ) for his family, my wife and I traded in our Prowler 26BH for a 2017 Lantern 192RD. No need to sleep 9 on our camping excursions any longer as she and I are retired and mostly go out on our own when we can.

Haven't taken it out for the maiden voyage yet but, since we frequently dry camp, I gave my dual 20 lb tanks to my son and upped the capacity to two 30 pounders and loaded up two 6 volt deep cycle batteries with solar panel charger. Added a small (300 watt) inverter and a 24" TV and I think we're ready to rock and roll! Though I have a 1,500 watt inverter in the truck, It was sort of overkill to merely operate a "hot spot" and the laptop.

We're hoping to take it out later this month for a weekend trial run and I'm looking forward to shaking the bugs out before Winter's snow-bird adventures begin. Really enjoy this forum and the modifications submitted by members as I incorporated the suggestion to replace the drain plugs with valves... SWEET!
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Old 08-16-2016, 08:27 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by alpha View Post
After my son decided that he wanted an RV of his own (2017 Lantern LT17FQ) for his family, my wife and I traded in our Prowler 26BH for a 2017 Lantern 192RD. No need to sleep 9 on our camping excursions any longer as she and I are retired and mostly go out on our own when we can.

Haven't taken it out for the maiden voyage yet but, since we frequently dry camp, I gave my dual 20 lb tanks to my son and upped the capacity to two 30 pounders and loaded up two 6 volt deep cycle batteries with solar panel charger. Added a small (300 watt) inverter and a 24" TV and I think we're ready to rock and roll! Though I have a 1,500 watt inverter in the truck, It was sort of overkill to merely operate a "hot spot" and the laptop.

We're hoping to take it out later this month for a weekend trial run and I'm looking forward to shaking the bugs out before Winter's snow-bird adventures begin. Really enjoy this forum and the modifications submitted by members as I incorporated the suggestion to replace the drain plugs with valves... SWEET!
What??? You did a mod before your first post???? You did not give us ample time to warn you about staying out of the mods section because it WILL cost big bucks!

Anyway welcome to the forum and if you venture into the mod section again, remember to bring your wallet fully loaded. LOL.
PS. We love pictures too.
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Old 08-16-2016, 08:32 PM   #13
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I'll try to remember that but, as a retired electrical engineer, I can't help myself!!!
here's a few photo's...

The first is a little modification made in the front cargo compartment where I added a hinged drawer for my 130 watt solar panel. It should keep it safely out of the way of everything else stored in there.

Then there's the small inverter mounted down beside the Power Panel. It's on its own 30 amp fuse where the slide out circuit would be on a larger RV. And, finally is the 24" TV which, though not a Jensen, only weighs 6.9 pounds and draws a mere 18 watts. If I'm dry camping, the 300 watt inverter is more than adequate.
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Old 08-16-2016, 11:28 PM   #14
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Nice mods
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Old 08-17-2016, 10:16 AM   #15
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You're going to be a welcome member. Keep posting those upgrades and photos. Congratulations by the way.
Rusty
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Old 08-18-2016, 12:36 AM   #16
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Well, due to the lack of clearance between the bed and wall (13"), the Denali 325 is not going to work for us. The search goes on.
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Old 08-18-2016, 04:35 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by crunchman12001 View Post
Well, due to the lack of clearance between the bed and wall (13"), the Denali 325 is not going to work for us. The search goes on.
I know it's not a T.T. but floor plan is close to the 325. This is what one of our RV church friends have.

https://www.granddesignrv.com/showro...loorplans/27rl
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Old 08-18-2016, 11:17 PM   #18
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I know it's not a T.T. but floor plan is close to the 325. This is what one of our RV church friends have.

https://www.granddesignrv.com/showro...loorplans/27rl
Hi DesertRat,
Thank you for the model suggestion. The grand design are nice.
We have a seasonal site and are looking more for comfort and convenience than something compact for towing.
We are not set on a model but leaning towards a large TT (36' +) or most likely a Destination or park model. We are leaning towards a triple slide, front bedroom model. I liked the 325RL but the bed clearance is a deal killer. I looked at all the Dutchman models but looks like they don't have an alternative.
I like the Spree 337RES, Cruiser Radiance 32 RESL, also the Brecken Ridge 41ETS and the Keystone Retreat 391MKTS.
I have nothing but time to decide, this will be our 3rd unit and we are getting a feel for the direction we are headed and what we really want in a unit.
Thanks again,
crunchman12001
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Progressive Industries (EMS) EMS-PT30C
Equal-i-zer 4-Point Sway Control - 12,000 lbs GTW, 1,200 lbs TW
2015 F-250 FX4 SD 6.2L Gas 4WD SuperCab XL 3.73 rear
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Old 08-19-2016, 04:39 PM   #19
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If your looking to just put it in a park I can tell you a used Teton will be less price & twice the trailer. Look at something like this
2008 Teton Homes Teton Homes 39 Experience Laramie

My 2003 Teton cost more new than my 2014 Voltage did. My inside looks just as good as the link I sent. See if there are any Tetons around you you will be surprised of how nice they are.
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Old 08-24-2016, 10:09 PM   #20
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Well, due to the lack of clearance between the bed and wall (13"), the Denali 325 is not going to work for us. The search goes on.
Did you even look at one???? I'm a big guy and have no problem negotiating that passage. And with a door on both sides of the foot of the bed, you'll seldom have need to be there anyway. If that was a deal breaker on an otherwise outstanding TT, your choices are extremely slim.

Good luck.
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