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Old 02-09-2009, 02:49 PM   #1
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Heard today powerhouse conversions had a fire and burn't to the ground. They stated they are not going to rebuild do to the economy
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Old 02-10-2009, 12:54 AM   #2
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...hope that guy is OK....he isn't much of a salesman[IMO]....but he sure as hell was a real thinker/designer...Shame-I hope they are OK and have insurance that covers their business.......the guy invented a stinger trailer hitch & a towed hauler that moved in and out on 4" steel tubes allowing for sharper turns with a large trailer/toad vehicle....he did a tremendous job of moving the industry forward with his designs,planning and advance thinking.....this is a great loss to the Conversion Industry.....my best to Steve and his crew.......geofkaye
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Old 02-11-2009, 05:41 AM   #3
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Is this the one in North Dakota????
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Old 02-11-2009, 06:29 PM   #4
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Yes Bismark, ND
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Old 02-12-2009, 07:27 AM   #5
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Wow, I was really thinking of having Steve do the finish work on my project. I guess I'll have to finish her out myself.
-blizz
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Old 02-16-2009, 12:00 PM   #6
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I'm pretty new to truck conversions. I'm doing research into buying one now to replace my '92 Allegro class A. I'm confused about Powerhouse tho. There is one in Utah isn't there? Is this different than one in ND? I had never heard of the one in ND.
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Old 02-26-2009, 01:24 PM   #7
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one of them just burned to the ground....FWIT.....geofkaye
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Old 05-06-2009, 10:27 AM   #8
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I am the Volvo salesman that supplies Powerhouse with all their chassis. Powerhouse has not burned down and he is not located in ND. He is still manufacturing coaches and he does an exceptional job. He is located in Idaho Falls, ID. www.powerhousecoach.com
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Old 05-07-2009, 03:42 PM   #9
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I think the confusion lies in the fact that there are TWO "Powerhouses"- Powerhouse Coach in Idaho, who is still alive and well, and Powerhouse Conversions in North Dakota, the one that allegedly is up in smoke. Too bad, they did some nice work for what appeared to be fair prices, while the Idaho-based concern is pretty high-end, considering they use Forest(sp?)River-based pre-built coach bodies. I got this info from them, so it isn't a slam.
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Old 05-07-2009, 09:06 PM   #10
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...doesn't Cowboy Caddy do the same thing-it is kinda like a bait and switch deal where they sell you something that really isn't what it is advertised to be?...seems I remember a few posts on this issue some time ago...The POWERHOUSE crew that I saw and spent some time with in Louisville at the RV Show was the most innovative group in the business....this other guy is kinda like S&S or something like it on that scale....utilitarian but very functional and well built-just without the glitz. I've built that way as my market is more towards the hunting and fishing 4X4 Nascar crowd which like indestructibility and form follows function.....I have a trailer that is to be built that is almost bullet proof- plate aluminum-2X2X3/16'' steel frame 16'' on center...foam on all surfaces-3 ea 6000# axles on a 24' unite-V-nose-party on roof-rear lift door to hold 4000# loading 4X4...and it is a cash deal.....there is a GOD some days!....geofkaye
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Old 05-08-2009, 06:44 AM   #11
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Geof,
Do you build conversion full time? I'm thinking of a new TLC show modeled after Orange County Choppers........hmmmmmmmm :-)
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Old 05-08-2009, 11:58 AM   #12
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Just a correction. Powerhouse Coach from Idaho Falls built with pre built Teton boxes over 6 years ago. I have been dealing with them for the past 6 years and he is one of the only manufacturer, that I am aware of, that has purchased his own vac table and makes all of his own vacum sealed walls and ceilings in house now.

He does build it as strong as a tank though.

Big T.
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Old 05-08-2009, 03:12 PM   #13
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Hey Big T-

The reason I still thought they were using outsourced boxes was that they were building many of their units with the door on the driver's side. They called it a convenience, but it was a sure indicator they were taking a 5th wheel box and turning it back-to-front, which also gave it a huge "trunk" in the rear of the unit where the kingpin used to be. Maybe not true today, but not long ago (2-3 yrs) it was. Hence they had a unit that was(is) too long to tow almost anything legally. Those trucks are loooong! And BTW, welcome aboard!

Gary
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Old 05-08-2009, 03:15 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by dgorila1:
I'm thinking of a new TLC show modeled after Orange County Choppers........hmmmmmmmm :-)
With Geofkaye?!?!?!?!
Now THAT is a scary thought!
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Old 05-08-2009, 04:35 PM   #15
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....Gary is too close to the reactors that are bound to be leaking again ;&gt geofkaye
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Old 05-08-2009, 04:53 PM   #16
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...BigT...vac tables are for setting up cheaply constructed walls & ceilings using wood and Styrofoam insulation...then gluing them all together in one big panel...they are mainly for huge panels which are obsolete now as the trucking/trailer industry found out over just a short 5 years....they de-laminate in moisture and crack/split open-I have repaired too many with my un-patented process called "MASS SUCTION"[which is really a HVAC TOOL] and a rubber suction cup from a glass delivery van+ epoxy glue thinned down-injected with a needle ....it is a messy process that gives a perfect repair that lasts till the next crack[4 inches away] gets water in it and the whole process starts over again....it has been largely been left to rot by the wayside as the panels only last for a few years at most-[if you keep them inside away from the weather/water ;&gt]..... most guys are building panels on board with a steel/aluminum cage-finished on the inside and out that can be repaired-won't rot and split open-allow for a certain amount of movement and can be insulated very cheaply[pink stuff or styrofoam].....Essex Trailers were a good example.....geofkaye
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Old 05-08-2009, 05:13 PM   #17
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dgorila....I have an opening in 2010 in the summer/late fall now...if you can wait-everything is custom and built by hand....sorry but at my age I have to pace myself and 4 a year is really too much[cutting down to 3]-I'm finding that re-doing houses is easier on me physically, at this point, but I still do a Trailer/MH/Toter if I get antsy and have to work to keep what is left of my sanity......RV stuff is a hobby now to take up the slack of me working at the Hospital/Teaching and running 4 business all the time[I'm fully retired 12/05/09-'course I have been retired since 1996-but that is another issue]...also I have 7 happy workers that have limited capability and it does require me to take more time with them[WOMEN!]....but they do the work right the first time as they have to eat the comebacks out of their own time...which they hate!.....we work 7 days a week X 5 hours a day and commiserate all the time....but in this market they truly appreciate having a job and making good money-without work from me they would be back on the street....geofkaye-The Rivercity Group
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Old 05-11-2009, 06:46 AM   #18
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Good top of the week to all of you,

Gary,

I have not seen any of Idaho's Powerhouse Coach with d/s doors but granted, I have not seen all of them. His normal design is with a raised Passenger side entry door with exterior power fold up stairway that goes to the top of the frame rail. He likes it because it does not take up any floorspace for entry steps. I've not seen it on anyone else's but it works for his customers. I don't believe it would be my preference but does not seem to bother anyone who owns one. I kinda like the entry of Twins Coach that builds on the Freightliner Argosy with the side type entry and the queen bed cubby and the raised seated area above the entrance. Looks neat but have not seen one up close and would wonder about the headroom where the seated area is. Does anyone know if Twins Coach is still building with the Argosy model since I think that Freightliner quit building the Argosy for the North American Market?

Geof,

I have not heard of any Powerhouse customers experiencing the delaminating problem but I can understand where that has happened in similar construction methods. I'm not sure if Doug builds them the exact way but I do know he frames the wall first with steel tubing and also frames any window or door openings and then fills the walls from the top edge. Reminds me of the construction process that is used by the Utility Trailer Corp in the refrigerated trailer market that I worked with for a few years. Powerhouse's structure seems to be extremely strong but I'm guessing that your coach building expertise far outways my elementary understanding of the build process. Thanks for the lesson

Big T

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Old 05-11-2009, 07:54 PM   #19
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.....
BigT:...in this market I do mostly repairs/repairs/repairs and a little building[the housing market is dead but I do a lot of super-insulated foam retros]....the RV market is dead around here and all the stuff is up-grades and repairs....about a dealer a day goes under now. It is a scary time for the industry and everyone that is in it....only those that move laterally are keeping above the water now....and it doesn't look like it is getting any better. Most of the lamination that were done in Elkhart are gone and I see a lot of repairs on the horizon-as the unites age/road wear and the owner is faced with repair it or sell it and go into debt for a used....OR upgraded!....the truck shops that I use are on second shiftsX6 days as the owners are patching up the stuff instead of trading up and the shops are going at it like crazy...like frame and axle here are finishing about 13-18 a day....They tell me they have never been this busy-so there are a few brite spots....my Freightliner salesdude is doing an average of 2.75 a week for the last 6 months so he isn't killing himself-but it ain't like the last 5 years before 2008.....hoping that VOLVO will keep on being the leader in driver comfort and safety-I sure a hell love mine!....wouldn't trade it for 4 sexy pole dancers and a dry van full of Viagra.....geofkaye
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Old 05-12-2009, 06:18 AM   #20
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Geof, Thanks for the note. At least it sounds like you are staying busy and still have a pretty high demand for your builds. It has slowed significantly and the new sales have fallen through the floor on new over the road trucks but the used has picked up and we have had quite a bit of activity on new RV chassis bids. Not sure if it is because of the sun coming out and people enjoying the weather but we'll take it anyhow.

Sounds like you have been in the business for a while and it's useful to get good honest (sometimes too honest) answers. Thanks.

If you ever need assistance with anything from the Volvo side whether it be for trucks, parts or service questions, I would be happy to help or put you in touch with someone who can.

Keep up the good work,

Big T.
Jeff Tackett
800/886-4242

P.S. I might have to trade mine for the pole dancers (Just kiddin MOM)
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