Camper problems

Submitted: Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 14:46
ThreadID: 69873 Views:7196 Replies:9 FollowUps:22
This Thread has been Archived
Please be aware if buying a new camper, a mate who is a lurker on EO asked me to put this up for him, so no one else has to deal with same problems he has.
Last year we did the Anne Beadell Highway and this is where his saga started. with the camper below:

Image Could Not Be Found

On this trip on Day 2 when opening the unit it tore the wall near the hinge. (5" rip we had to mend)
Day 4 with rain at night and it leaked onto the beds through the stitching on the roof (canvas had been wetted 4 times before camper was ever used).
Day 5 Fridge door broke from its hinges. (repaired by Dometic)
Day 7 Rain on the track, (water 12" deep, the rear hinged door flap opened and let water and mud cover the floor leaving behind mud etc all over the floor area. The water tank allowed muddy water to enter it through the hole in the top of the tank.

We towed a Jayco Eagle Outback on the same trip and had no problems with the camper at all, so we were not low flying or doing anything out of the ordinary.

After no joy from manufacturer and owner having to have a Quad bypass and not wanting to do the Consumer Affairs thing with all the hospital stuff going on, he eventually repaired most of the problems himself, (at his cost).

Now 14 mths later and going away the last long weekend it again tore near the hinge point again, Mate is now having a zip put in so he can unzip canvas in this area and then fold up.

So just be aware of the downfalls he has had.
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Reply By: tim_c - Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 14:57

Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 14:57
Sorry to hear of your friend's woes...

It seems that if the canvas is ripping when the top is opened/closed, that the canvas is moving from its proper place ie. perhaps it's sliding along the runners that attach it to the 'hard' part of the camper.
AnswerID: 370320

Follow Up By: Blaze (Berri) - Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 15:47

Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 15:47
Hi Tim,

Canvas on this model doesn't slide, you may have hit the so called nail on the head and this is why he is splitting the canvas with a zip.


FollowupID: 637648

Reply By: TerraFirma - Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 15:38

Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 15:38

The reality is you shouldn't be buying any camper that doesn't have a history of successful trips. The best campers in the business have been built after years of time spent on the road and in the outback. New campers don't have the luxury of this. This is reflected in the price. You buy a cheaper camper without a history you buy a greater risk and vice versa for the more well known campers. (Notwithstanding a dearer camper with more bells & whistles has a bigger chance of breaking something)

At the end of the day you get what you pay for and the issues described above could have all been eradicated by the use of better quality materials with a higher price tag, hope you get what I mean.
AnswerID: 370327

Follow Up By: Gramps - Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 15:42

Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 15:42

Suggest you have a good look at the picture in Blaze's post. It looks like the product of one of our most experienced c/t makers (40 yrs in the business). They are'nt cheap either.

FollowupID: 637646

Follow Up By: Blaze (Berri) - Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 15:45

Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 15:45
Totally agree with you Terra. But I would have expected that if Jayco could do all the same klm's etc. The camper that my mate bought is from a company that have been making campers for 40years, a lot longer than many of the current builders have been in business, is this just a case of them selling items now by their name and not their quality.

FollowupID: 637647

Follow Up By: TerraFirma - Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 15:54

Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 15:54
Jayco are themselves one of the biggest culprits, everyone I know who has bought a new jayco has had similar problems, or problems of some description. Perhaps Campers and Vans are different?

Jayco is in the business of producing products at a given price point and supporting them with a warranty, warranty being the keyword, everybody with a jayco needs a warranty. 2 of my friends have had their new vans, not campers , back twice now for things that shouldn't but do break. In one instance one of my friends has made his own modifications to the electrical system for an issue with his van, he is a sparkie luckily.

I believe for the price point it isn't unreasonable for someone to expect some issues with jayco products however I draw the line at a camper leaking water, that is a fundamental failure of a product to deliver the purpose for which it was designed. EPIC FAILURE..!

FollowupID: 637651

Follow Up By: Blaze (Berri) - Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 16:05

Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 16:05
Hi Terri,

Think you missed the point, the Jayco didn't miss a beat, and if any of the campers that were with us that also included Adventure Camper etc. It would have been the Jayco that we all would have expected to fail, not the one shown in the Picture, which is the one that had all the troubles.

And you do mention that Jayco at least do their warranty, unfortunately my mates brand was thanks for the money CYA later attitude.

FollowupID: 637655

Follow Up By: TerraFirma - Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 16:24

Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 16:24
What was the brand CYA later service applied to.?
FollowupID: 637661

Follow Up By: Blaze (Berri) - Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 02:17

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 02:17
Gday Terra,

The camper in the picture CUB, they didn't want to know
FollowupID: 637750

Reply By: Shaker - Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 15:41

Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 15:41
It is common with hard floor off the back campers to have to very careful in regard to the canvas snaaging when unfolding. If you are aware of it, it isn't a problem.
AnswerID: 370328

Follow Up By: Blaze (Berri) - Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 16:11

Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 16:11
Point taken Shaker,

With the people on this trip having owned between them 9 campers over the last 30years, I am very confident in saying that care was taken when folding and unfolding, and its now been sorted by a Canvas fitter thats it actually happens when the camper is folded by catching the spredder hinge point, and unless you get a child to sit in camper when closed it will do it every now and again, I wonder if the company supply someone to sit inside to make sure it misses the hinge point of the spredders.

FollowupID: 637657

Follow Up By: Shaker - Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 19:17

Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 19:17
As mentioned above, they are very experienced & reputable company, & in all the time I have been here at EO, I have never seen this complaint before.
We were warned with our over the back camper that this can happen, & that it would not be covered by warranty, as the warning was given.
So, each time we open or close it, we just look in the doors to see that nothing will catch on the hinge.
FollowupID: 637695

Follow Up By: Blaze (Berri) - Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 02:20

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 02:20
Gday Shaker,

Is your's the Spacevan or a smaller Cubomatic or similar, seems from what we have found out since the lower campers by this company don't have any hassles.

FollowupID: 637751

Follow Up By: Shaker - Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 09:51

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 09:51
No, It's a Pioneer, but a friend has an Australian Offroad & he has been advised the same.
FollowupID: 637792

Reply By: Member - Oldbaz. NSW. - Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 16:16

Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 16:16
I'm no expert ,but it would appear that for the canvas to tear twice in a similar area that too much pressure is being applied. Are there adjustable hoops or other that may be overtensioned & placing too much stress on the canvas as it
is being unfolded. If this is from a longtime manufacturer you can be sure this
issue would have arisen before if it is an inherant fault in manufacture. How water gets in the tank other than through the filler is beyond me. The hinged door flap needs a better catch. Canvas is prone to leak, I always use a silver tarp
two minutes work saves all leaking aggravation without having to resort to all that sealing drama. I dont mean to sound critical, But ,in my experience, most things benefit from a little modification or additions. I hope your mate gets it all sorted as these things are bloody annoying on the road, & I wish him well
with it...cheers....oldbaz.
AnswerID: 370336

Reply By: Member - Scoof (SA) - Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 16:29

Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 16:29
Blaze I have that brand camper and have been happy with it.
I have been on some rough track's without any problems, I have had mine since 2002 , maybe your mate got a Friday Camper or just a Lemon.
Or things have gone down hill since 2002.

Hope your mate has a better run now that he has fixed it himself.

Cheers Scoof . :-(
AnswerID: 370339

Follow Up By: Blaze (Berri) - Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 02:26

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 02:26
Gday Scoof,

Is your's the spacevan, or the lower cubomatic or similar, as I said above to Shaker we have been informed from another manufacturer that the problem seems to be with the Spacevan, AMP guy I think you know who I mean has a Spacevan, I will give him a call and see if he has had any problems. Basically the worse thing was the lack of after sales service and P/Off attitude, with manufacturer and dealer arguing about who had to fix it and niether doing JACK.


FollowupID: 637752

Follow Up By: Member - Scoof (SA) - Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 11:30

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 11:30
Blaze , no mine is a Offroad Drover I don't think the spacevan was around when I bought mine.

I had trouble with the frig flame getting blown out dureing a strong wind and the dealer sent me a baffle type arangement no questioned asked but that was 7 years ago.

You would think that if they had been around for 40 years makeing campers you would be pritty safe buying that brand.They are not the cheapest around.

Cheers Scoof. :-)
FollowupID: 637804

Follow Up By: Blaze (Berri) - Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 12:05

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 12:05

I think my mate would be wrapped if his problem was a fridge flame being blown out LOL.

I totally agree with if you are in the game for 40years, you should be able to get it right and if not fix it. And you're spot on with them not being the cheapest, sure their not $50,000 like a Kimberley or some others but the parts that failed on this unit weren't parts like the suspension etc. that these high end offroaders ask the extra dollars for.

This post was only placed to help others make sure they dont end up with the same headaches.


FollowupID: 637809

Reply By: Muddie - Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 20:19

Tuesday, Jun 16, 2009 at 20:19
Why such a reluctance to name the manufacturer, if they build a sub standard product then surely a forum like this is the place to point out the problems and hopefully get some leverage to have them corrected.
AnswerID: 370407

Follow Up By: Blaze (Berri) - Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 02:37

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 02:37
Gday Muddie,

No problem naming them, and the dealer, think everyone realised it was a CUB Spacevan, and just to fill you in, the dealer was Dave Benson in Adelaide.

I wasn't writting it for leverage to get it corrected, my mate just wanted others to know the pitfalls, he excepts he isn't going to get any assistance from either party. Van is now over 12mths old, and something I didn't know when chasing around about the unit, campers or vans are covered by a completely different warranty setup than cars etc. If the water tank splits, you have to get the manufacturer to repair it, not the van maker, same with axels brakes etc, you have to go to manufacturer of the parts. Imagine if you're brand new 200 yota died on the side of the road and you rang Mr Yota and he said owe thats the fuel pump or similar and you have to go to manufacturer for help, wouldn't that be just great.

I seriously believe both CUb and Bensons used the situation and the fact that mates health was poorly and he was heading into having a quad by-pass as the reason they didn't offer any help, he wasn't in a condition to go argue with them.

FollowupID: 637753

Follow Up By: Krakka - Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 06:12

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 06:12
Hi Blaze, I would have to challenge you on the point about warranty, we bought a T van thru Dave Bensons, had a couple of warranty issues and took it back to they're service workshop on Prospect Rd. Never had a problem, they were very helpful, and everything was corrected by them. They dealt with Track Trailer, not me.


FollowupID: 637754

Follow Up By: Blaze (Berri) - Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 09:34

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 09:34
Hi Krakka, I except what your saying about the T-Van, and if it's the same company, all this shows is that T-Van support their product way way better than CUB. All I mentioned about how the warranty is, was because thats what Consumer Affairs told us. My brother also owns a Jayco and they replaced all the canvas because his wife didn't like the fact that the canvas was pulled to tight on tyhe door side. So yes some manufacturer's do support their product.

FollowupID: 637787

Follow Up By: Member - Pesty (SA) - Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 11:19

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 11:19
Hi Blaze,
We bought a Cub 4 years ago and are generally happy with what we bought.
I reported and Dave Benson, as agents, inspected some minor warranty issues, in the 12 month warranty period, but to this day I am unable to get Cub to do any warranty work, it was even left with Dave Benson for 6 weeks last year to have the work done, but Cub told them to forget it without telling me until I went to pick it up.
Some of those minor issues have now become major ones.
The problem as I see it is with Cub not Dave Benson Agents.
I am slamming Cub here and now for there "No Warranty Repair's Policy" and will be delighted for Mr Cub to take me to court for saying so, at least then I would be getting a responce.
He will be hearing from Consumer Affairs as my first step of legal action shortly.
Tell your friend, Blaze, to hunt them down, chew them up and Spit them out if they are going to sell warranty's but not honour them.

Cheers Pesty
FollowupID: 637801

Follow Up By: Blaze (Berri) - Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 12:00

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 12:00
Gday Pesty,

I am inclined to agree with you, regarding who it was that refused the warranty, my only trouble with Dave Benson (on behalf of my mate) is if they are going to sell a Manufacturers product they should put some pressure on the manufacturer to honour the warranty, if I was selling a brand of Printer and the company didn't stand by their warranty, guess what printer I would stop selling. It is the sales outlet that has to face the public not the manufacturer.

Sorry to hear you are facing the same after sales warranty issue's as my mate did, unfortunately he has just given up and excepted the problems, Cub have played on the fact that his health has made him put it in the non stress basket.

Mate maybe Nissan warranty handle Cubs also.. LOL

FollowupID: 637808

Reply By: Gramps - Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 08:14

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 08:14

1. Ripped canvas. Was that just to the lower right of the window on the start of the slope to the hardfloor ?

2. Wetting canvas alone does'nt necessarily seal it completely. Sometimes it's advisable to use the "wax stick" etc on seams as well.

3. Fridge door obviously a Dometic issue. Fridge is used in a lot of c/ts and caravans etc.

4. Rear hinged door flap is held in place by two large springs. Can't see how they'd just let go. Any info on what caused this?

5.Water tank issue is interesting.


AnswerID: 370459

Follow Up By: Blaze (Berri) - Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 09:59

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 09:59
Gday Gramps,

Thanks for the questions.

1. Yes ripped as you mentioned about 8inches in from the angle.

2. I agree with the wax, but also have to add that a Cameron Camper, Jayco and an Adventure Camper didn't leak a drop. It wasn't a Qld storm just steady rain over night.

3. Fridge was repaired by Dometic as a Faulty Item.

4. Springs on the rear door didn't let go, travelling along at 20kl's per hr for about 50kl's of 6 to 12" deep water across the track, the water pressure agains't the flapped door forced it open and allowed the water in. He now puts duck tape around door if we are on any tracks with water across them. He excepted CUB probably couldn't fix this just wanted them and people on here to know as it's a trap for new players.

5.Water Tank had a hole in the top which I'm assuming was to have a breather hose fitted to it, well no hose fitted so it was a hole straight into the tank, lovely muddy water came out of the tape, also it actually got stones through the hole which took ages to clean out of the tank at Tom Price. these stones would have loved going through his pump LOL.

Cheers Mate.
FollowupID: 637794

Reply By: paulnsw - Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 09:24

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 09:24
My brother and I own a Spacevan we use for prospecting 12wks year. Use our van when wife and I go away. Go into rough country to date nothing broken.

Never had issues with canvas but care and attention is needed when folding to tuck canvas in. We were shown this when Spacevan was delivered. Spacevan has been close to faultless. Few tiny things fixed or changed by brother. Have tailored welded Nylex plastic cover for when it rains. All canvas leaks at some time.
If the fridge door fell off and considering how many of these are used in CT and vans would indicate a problem with the tyre pressures or loading and the owner.
Would buy another Spacevan without hesitation and more than happy to recommend Cub and Spacevan. Met many happy satisified owners. As far as we are concerned only sensible camper trailer with hard floor. Cub is setup and we are having wine while others who started at same time with soft floor camper are still going 2 hrs later packing or unpacking.
AnswerID: 370466

Follow Up By: Blaze (Berri) - Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 09:49

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2009 at 09:49
Glad you have had no troubles with your's except for the things you mentioned your brother fixed or changed. As for tyre pressure to suit the fridge door, we all had 18lb in our vehicles and12lb in camper tyres due to the corrigations, speed was 25 to 30 kl'ms per hr. Not sure if you think either of these to be incorrect but with between all of us on the trip, all being lets say over 50 yrs of age and having been driving 4x4's for on average over 30 years, we certainly don't confess to knowing it all about offroad driving, but we do know a little... Or should by now.
And I go back to my point, I towed a Jayco and i'm the first to confess that it is really only suited to Off road via dirt roads not places like the Anne Beadell, but it has the same fridge and didn't have any problems, and as I also mentioned, Dometic excepted manufactor fault and replaced the door as soon as we returned, luckily these doors can be fitted in reverse so he didn't lose use of the fridge, just wish CUB could have been as good with their service as Dometic.

FollowupID: 637791

Reply By: GHThommo - Thursday, Jun 18, 2009 at 19:15

Thursday, Jun 18, 2009 at 19:15
Hey Blaze,

Thanks for the heads up.

We have a Cub Supamatic Regal with the trans continental pack. Have done 20000 kms so far without any of the difficulties you have listed. We were warned about the problem of tearing the the canvas at the hinge point when opening if you don't take care in how you pack it at this point when closing.

Haven't been through that much water but can envision how it could happen. Have thought of adding a clasp lock of some description to keep people out but may also help in the situation you describe. Will also check top of water tank to see if have same problems.

AnswerID: 370745

Follow Up By: Blaze (Berri) - Friday, Jun 19, 2009 at 03:25

Friday, Jun 19, 2009 at 03:25
Thanks for the comments Thommo,

This is what the post was put up for to help any other owners. Yes my mate has had the instruction lessons regarding the care needed when folding, and he has been if anything over cautious folding it up and it has still happened twice. Of course it has now been up and down quite a lot as we do go away a fair bit, so please keep an eye on it. I believe his idea now to have the extra zip put in which will make it more like some of the Kimberleys with the extra door on the oposite side will cure the problem.

I forgot to mention his also rubbed a small hole in the roof where the cross beams touch the canvas when travelling.

So good luck to you with yours and hope you never have to experience CUB's non existing warranty. LOL

FollowupID: 638095

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