Editor’s Note: To view an accompanying video from WSBT, South Bend, Ind., click here.
Shipshewana, Ind.-based Forks RV Inc. will soon be in the national spotlight because of the high-end travel trailers it makes.
A crew from the Travel Channel spent the last couple of days at the company’s headquarters in Shipshewana, shooting a segment for one of its shows called “Extreme RVs.” Their focus – to showcase the high-end travel trailers and fifth-wheels made by Forks RV.
Their show takes a look at manufacturers that take their time building towable units that involve a lot of handmade efforts. “Forks RV uses a large amount of craftsmanship and just kind of go above and beyond. They are very specialized in what they do and Forks RV is definitely one of those companies that fits the bill,” said Extreme RVs Director Dennis Zerull.
“The fit and finish to the product is above anything else in the market,” said Forks RV Director of Operations Eric Stutzman. “Typically, to get in this level of finish, you’re into a class A or higher-end, customer bus of some sort.”
Forks typically turns out a limited amount of units every year.
“The bar is high,” added Stutzman. “It’s not volume-based production facility. We do maybe 25 coaches a year, so the focus is on the quality side of things.”
He says he and the workers feel it is “a great honor to have been picked for the show,” adding, “It’s a chance to show the quality of their product to a national audience.”
“When we have the recognition from the Travel Channel like this, it’s exciting. You know it opens up, it broadens our horizons quite a bit,” said Stutzman.
Producers of the show point out that firms are not selected arbitrarily to be on Extreme RVs. “We do an extensive amount of research,” said Zerull. “Extreme RVs is now in its third season, and a large part of that has been here in Indiana.”
The segment of the program that Forks RV will appear on is slated to be on the Travel Channel late this spring or early this summer.
A new three-hour block of “Extreme RV” shows will premiere on the Travel Channel on Nov. 11. The RVing Examiner reported that Brentwood Communications International Inc. , a North Hills, Calif.-based TV production company, said the three-episode special will feature another impressive selection of cutting-edge motorhomes and travel trailers as well as a raft of classic RV restorations.
The first one-hour episode, which airs at 6 p.m. Pacific, features country music group The Band Perry’s luxury Prevost XLII tour bus, Jay Leno’s 1961 Flxible Starliner Coach and three Airstream rebuilds by the master craftsmen at Wheat Ridge, Colo.-based Timeless Travel Trailers.
The Band Perry’s bus – supplied by motorhome specialist Hemphill Brothers comes complete with band bunks and a mobile recording studio so that the group can cut music tracks whilst on the road. Leno’s splendid Flxible Starliner Coach conversion – undertaken by Bernard Juchli, General Manager at Jay Leno’s Big Dog Garage – offers a new spin on a classic design icon.
The complete vehicle refit even included the replacement of the vehicle’s original Detroit Diesel power plant with an uprated DD 6V92 two-stroke cycle, 552 cubic-inch, V-block Series 92 diesel engine so that Leno could tow a race car behind the unit on his weekend jaunts.
To view the entire article click here.
High Noon Entertainment announced it will be producing a “no holds barred” special on extreme RVs that is scheduled to air on the Travel Channel.
According to a press release, Mega RV Countdown is searching for the latest in “over-the-top” RV innovations – from the converted school bus to the Boatorhome and everything in between.
“Mega RV Countdown is looking for the most outrageous vehicles and the people who own and design them,” said Cindy Baggish, associate producer. “If you can drive it and sleep in it, we want to see it.”
High Noon Entertainment has produced several other cable TV shows, including Cake Boss, Heat Seekers, Bang for Your Buck and Food Network Challenge.
To contact High Noon Entertainment e-mail email@example.com.
Super Class C motorhome builder ShowHauler Inc., Middlebury, Ind., has seen traffic on its website (www.showhauler.com) jump more than 2,000% since Jan. 29 after one of its custom-built units was featured on a segment of the Travel Channel’s ”Extreme RVs” program.
”We usually get 100 to 150 hits a day on our website,” said Show Hauler Sales Manager Lonnie Troyer. ”The first day after the program was on TV, we got 3,300 hits. I’ve already got 20 leads and sold one already from the program.”
After the initial telecast, the program was shown again Thursday night (Feb. 9) and will be telecast again Feb. 19 at 5 p.m. EDT.
Production crews from Brentwood Communications International Inc. (BCII), a California-based film studio, visited ShowHauler’s factory three different times last spring and summer to video the process of assembling a custom-built ShowHauler RV, which can take up to three months.
BCII also produces such programs as ”American Trucker,” ”Hot Rod TV,” ”Single with 7” and ”Car Crazy Central” for various cable channels.
Each of the three ”Extreme RVs” scheduled for telecast has three segments that look at RVs producers consider ”extreme” and then detail the processes used to build them.
The ShowHauler 35KQSSL floorplan shown being built on ”Extreme RVs” is assembled on a hefty 56,000-pound GVWR Freightliner Coronado truck chassis powered by a 560-hp DD15 Detroit Diesel engine. The base MSRP is $320,000.
”Extreme RV” segments on the Travel Channel have included a luxury travel trailer built by Anderson Mobile Estates for X-Factor’s Simon Cowell and a 15-foot NASA-inspired Cricket travel trailer from the Cricket Trailer division of Taxa LP, Houston.
Cricket founder Garrett Finney was a NASA designer and used his knowledge of space-age materials to construct the Cricket, which is available in two floorplans with a $14,500 base MSRP.
Garret Finney’s pop-top Cricket travel trailer, which debuted on the Travel Channels’ Extreme RV show on Sunday (Jan. 29), created such a swarm of web traffic – 11,000 visits in just 36 hours – that the company’s website crashed according to a message posted on the Cricket trailer Facebook page on Monday.
As reported by the RV Examiner, the message read: “Thanks for all of the interest in Cricket Trailer!!! Due to the massive amount of hits, our website overloaded its server, and is currently being transferred to a larger dedicated server. The site should be up within the day. Thanks for hanging in there with us, and let’s keep this Cricket movement going!”
The Cricket – manufactured from aluminium composite panels and a laser-cut skeleton – is a durable lightweight travel trailer with a spring loaded pop-top that provides users with a compact and fully customizable camping experience.
For do-it-yourselfers, the company can provide the bare shell for $10,000 or they can deliver a bespoke “v-berth” or “folding couch” model direct to your doorstep within ten weeks of receiving your order.
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