Would you buy an airplane made by an RV manufacturer?


Imagine if you were in the market to buy a small airplane and, hypothetically, could buy one made by a large, existing RV manufacturer who opened an airplane-building division. Would you do it if the price was right?

In other words, do you believe the quality would inspire your confidence at 10,000 feet much the same as it might today flying in an aircraft built by Piper, Cessna or Beechcraft?

We realize this is a loaded question, so perhaps use it as a conversation starter in the comment section below. Keep your comment respectful and constructive or it will be dispatched into the far reaches of cyberspace. Thanks. — Chuck Woodbury

Oh, by the way, here is what I think.

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8 months ago

I have said many times, if the Auto industry were anything like the RV industry we would all be WALKING!

8 months ago

I’m sure there are industry standards they would have to meet, but I’d still be skeptical. A plane and an RV are two different animals. I hope never the leave the ground in an RV.

Alain Tasse
8 months ago
Reply to  Cindy

Yes Cindy, now let’s think back to the great ethics shown by both Boeing and the FAA together in the 737 Max debacle….

Dick Wallrich
8 months ago

Your polls don’t show up on iPads anymore. All the ads are there for sure but no polls. Your web producer isn’t doing you any favors

RV Staff (@rvstaff)
8 months ago
Reply to  Dick Wallrich

Sorry, Dick. Here’s what Jessica, one of our IT experts, says: “Sometimes script blockers and ad blockers interfere with our polls since they are from a 3rd party site. If you have one of these try and turn it off and see if that fixes the issue.” I hope that works for you. —Diane

Phil Atterbery
8 months ago

Nice survey Chuck. All of my adult work history (40ish years) is in the military & civilian aircraft industry. The one constant to quality has been designing an assembly to a federal mandated standard. If the RV industry adopted aircraft quality material & assembly standards the result would be a well built coach no one could afford. Even SAE standards would be hard for most builders to meet.

8 months ago

I’d fly in a plane made by Lazy Daze Motorhomes (the originators of the Class C) I’ve owned three. No problems.

8 months ago

The first thing would be with the RV industry build practices they would never be able to pass FAA standards for aircraft manufacturing. If by chance they found a way to avoid FAA scrutiny after the first crash and going through a NTSB investigation they would be out of business.

8 months ago

I wonder if a little Piper or Cessna airplane would also include a king bed, shower and head, dual-use refer, oven, range, microwave, pantry, dinette, ability to haul extra toys, and affordability to Joe Blow, who is anyone who simply wants one. Now, if something significant goes wrong in that little Cessna or Piper the result is often ‘Oblivion’; whereas if something significant goes south on a Thor, it’s ‘Inconvenient’.

Rick Sorrenti
1 year ago

I wouldn’t have any problem flying in a Newmar manufactured aircraft if:
A. They were certified by the FAA
B. Employed the requisite number of FAA Designated Engineering Representatives
C. If their engineering and manufacturing processes were ISO 9001/2020 certified

1 year ago

I appreciate the discussion, but as a pilot many RV’ers don’t understand the aircraft industry. In the 50’s there were many aircraft builders, but today there are few. Most of it is because of cost. Government regs and liability insurance have driven the cost out of most peoples ability to buy and keep in mind the pilot license requirements. Half the RV drivers on the road today would not be on the road if we required a RV driver license. So would this be bad, maybe and everyone will have opinions. But like everyone, I believe the RV industry needs to improve but getting these improvements will not be free. And may put the RV experience out of reach to many. So which is worse. Hard to say, but the RV industry needs to step it up with out the door quality. But I also believe RV buyers need to be more involved in the maintenance of their RV’s. Taking you RV in to the dealer saying it squeaks will not help how quickly it gets repaired. You are pulling you house on poor roads and many go to fast and then expect everything to be perfect. I recall a saying about RVs, that you are pulling your house in a hurricane during an earthquake. I am not trying to be down on (new) RV’ers, but when I read some questions on the blogs and book face (as my brother calls it), it is obvious that people do not do their basic homework before buying and heading out. So I agree that the industry needs to do better, but we as consumers (buyers) we need to be better informed and better owners. Thanks

Henry Dorn
1 year ago

Yes I would.

I am impressed with the build quality of our used 2011 Jayco RD19 .

No, the trailer does not use aircraft-styled steel fasteners, expensive machined castings or fittings, titanium skin, expensive black boxes and that’s what made it affordable to me.

My trailer is made out of carefully selected lumber strips, accurately assembled roof trusses, quality NSF grade plumbing. It uses correct AWG wire (everywhere I looked), is mounted on a very well-designed frame and rolls on quality vendor-sourced axles. The aluminum sides are beautifully installed and painted and the windows let a beautiful view in. The refrigeration, heating, air conditioning and plumbing systems are from top notch manufacturers. My trailer came configured with a customer selectable option of winter insulation and also with vendor-provided operating manuals and warranties.

The workmanship is superb, from behind the walls and under the floor. Kudos to Jayco and its hardworking employees in Indiana and Idaho.

When I asked to see the plumbing and electrical and build schematics for my 2011 Jayco RD19, the manufacturer quickly and professionally delivered them to me. These are top-notch engineering plans that match the drafting standards of commercial airplane manufacturers (zone callouts, title blocks, revision history and signed with the engineer’s initials.)

I would buy a Jayco airplane and know it would not be built like a trailer!

Airplanes fly. Trailers camp.

Ray Leissner
8 months ago
Reply to  Henry Dorn

Glad to hear of the quality in your 2011. Thor bought out Jayco in 2016.

bill b
1 year ago

as a pilot who owns a RV.
happy to fly. but always disappointed in the cheap manufacturing process used to build Rvs.

buy used. check it front to back.
expect to fix and repair as a normal course of ownership

1 year ago

I would not fly in any plane build by an RV manufacturer nor would I purchase a boat from one of them.

1 year ago

Yes…if Entegra built the plane. Not many other manufacturers. I would trust them as much as I trust Boeing. I still fly on Boeing – I would fly in a plane built by Entegra.

Vanessa Simmons
1 year ago

Only if my dad was still alive to do the maintenance on it. He purchased a crashed Cessna and rebuilt it in our driveway while caring for my ailing mother. Years later he sold it and the new owner promptly crashed it. He wouldn’t let anyone do the repairs but my dad. At 85 and 2 months he was getting ready to go to the airport to work when he passed away.

1 year ago

Would you fly in an aircraft manufactured by Boeing?

1 year ago

Having owned one of the last Comanche B’s, and logged over 20,000 hours, mostly in Boeings,my answer would be no!

Jim Schrankel
1 year ago

I would happily take to the air in my Born Free built airplane…..if they were still in business!

Glenda Alexander
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Schrankel

Like you, Jim, I’d fly in an airplane made by an RV manufacturer — IF it were built by Lazy Daze (which is still in business).

1 year ago

Talk to Boeing about the Maxie 737 — and they think they know what they are doing – and the FAA passed it as air worthy!

Sink Jaxon
1 year ago
Reply to  John

That was a software problem, it was and still is “airworthy”. I think we’re talking about mechanical soundness here. My humble opinion with a family with four pilots in it.

1 year ago
Reply to  John

In this deregulating environment, the FAA allowed Boeing to self regulate . We know allowing any business to self regulate is a recipe for disaster.

Wayne Caldwell
1 year ago
Reply to  Tina

Exactly the same as having the government regulate itself.

yelaroc - full timer
1 year ago

Only if it were made by Tiffin. If it were made by anyone else the answer is a resounding NO.

Michael from Shawnee KS
1 year ago

The phrase “riddled with defects” applies to the RV we bought new 3 years ago. No way any FAA inspection could catch all the hidden flaws that would show up when you are 10000 feet in the air, or 1000 miles from home. The other applicable phrase would be “lies the dealer told.”