“Camper Report – Riverside RV Retro 177 “White Water” Update

In May, we purchased a new Riverside RV 177 Camper from our local dealer. We took it on a “proving trip” to Fall Creek Falls, after which I posted “Camper Report – Riverside RV Retro 177 White Water.”

Since then we have taken several more trips, including a 1400 mile trip into the mountains of West Virginia. It is time to update that review. While we remain happy with the camper, there are several issues of concern, plus one of my readers expressed several strong complaints about his new Riverside RV Model 177. Before posting this article, I shared my (and his) concerns with the folks from Riverside RV from whom I received a prompt, positive response.

The Riverside RV Model 177 'White Water" Retro shortly after delivery this year.

The Riverside RV Model 177 ‘White Water” Retro shortly after delivery this year.

Regarding the trip into West Virginia, our Ford F-150 XLT Triton (2004, small V-8) pulled it nicely up and down 9% grades, both on the Interstates and along local two-lane mountain roads. On some of the steepest grades, it took fewer than 3000 rpm to maintain 45 mph. At that speed the engine and transmission were not working so hard. On flat land roads, 2100 rpm maintained 60-65 mph.

Our Concerns and Observations

The camper sits very low to the ground, which makes entry easy and convenient, and the camper can be parked in most garages (make sure you measure and check before backing in!). This also explains the wall-mounted air conditioner rather than a more typical RV roof mount.

The fact that the unit is very low to the ground causes both the front jack (fully raised) and/or the rear support triangles to drag when moving over uneven ground. It seems it was designed for flat and/or paved surfaces only–not always the way it is in the camping world.

The holding tanks extend below the underside of the camper down to almost the level of the bottom of the axle–I guess that is why the rear support triangles are there, otherwise, backing over a curb or an obstacle could crush the holding tank and/or connecting pipes.

There is a shelf over the head of the bed. While this seemed like a convenience, I have bumped my head — hard — on it several times sitting up. Guess I will learn—soon, I hope.
Finally, while this is a personal preference item, the original mattress was very hard and we decided to add a four-inch thick memory foam pad.

Camper Updates

According to a representative from the factory, Riverside RV has recognized and acknowledged these issues and has corrected them on current production RV 177s, and has developed upgrades for existing owners.

First, there is a riser kit for the axle that raises the camper, relieving many of the issues with the low profile. This also includes a modification that raises the front jack for more clearance.

The local dealer indicated that he could install wheels on or replace the rear support braces with wheels. At least this should prevent the braces from digging into the soil when they hit the ground. Of course, with the axle riser modification, this would be less of a problem.

As for the over-bed shelf, it has been moved up or modified, providing more clearance over the head of the bed. My forehead would appreciate that.

Lastly, there is a mattress upgrade (option?). Apparently we are not the only ones who thought the basic mattress was a bit stiff.

These modifications can be accomplished at the Riverside RV factory in LaGrange, Indiana. At this time, there is no set price for the upgrades.

For more information on these upgrades, or other questions about Riverside RV products, go to their website at: http://www.riversidervs.net/default.html, and look for the “Contacts” button.

Other Riverside RV owners are invited to share their experiences in their Riverside RV campers (or any others for that matter). Your comments may be used in a future blog, or you may be invited to submit a guest blog, if it is determined to be of interest to our readers.

Note: Since the planned October trip to Michigan takes us not too far from LaGrange, IN, I have requested a tour of the factory manager. If agreed, will post more information and photos of Riverside RV’s manufacturing facilities.

Text and photographs © Jeff Richmond

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124 Responses to “Camper Report – Riverside RV Retro 177 “White Water” Update

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  4. RG Hughes says:

    Wish I had found this prior to my purchase of the 177, pulling out of the dealership I bottomed out damaging my grey pipe, then crushed it when I eased over a speed bump at a CoE campground and damaged the black as well.
    I also got a damaged vent and when getting up top noticed the roof is cracking open. have you checked yours? Also my fresh water line must have Non RV hose as you can taste the rubber hose when 1st turned on. I have many other issues and will be sure to tell all to stir clear of riverside.

    • Tim says:

      I have encountered none of the problems with mine as some of you have. The one minor problem I had was taken care of right away by my dealership n Ocala. I’m on my second Retro and love the new 177SE edition so I might be looking at my 3rd!!

      • merlinjr01 says:

        Like any relatively new products, there were some growing pains, but, really minor in the overall scheme of things, and the company seems to have taken information and comments from users to heart and made the necessary changes. When visiting the factory last year, they pointed out that if they see a fix or an improvement that can be made, they incorporate it in the production line right away–i.e., they do not wait for a “new production cycle” to enhance a product.

  5. susan says:

    My 177 the ac was replaced with the cabinet after a year of trying to resolve the problem. The old ac was a touch screen the new one has knobs. The rv was fixed at the factory. It works great now. Before the unit leaked all over my bed. I have been complaining since April 2014 about the supports dragging over speed bumps. I wish they would offer some discount to raise the unit or add the wheels to the supports or have the dealers offer us the option and pay.

    • merlinjr01 says:

      Susan, thank you for the comment. Did you read my follow up on the camper. Riverside does have a kit to raise the camper a couple of inches. By now, they should be able to make that kit available to dealers–it really is quite simple. I’ll have another article out soon.

      • Paula Russell says:

        Could you please tell me what the name of the kit is? I think I should do that to my 177-Thank you very much!!

      • merlinjr01 says:

        I am not sure what “kit” your are referring to unless it is what I call the “lift kit” that raises the camper about two inches. I am sure if you talk to a Riverside dealer, they will know what you mean.

    • Gordie says:

      Finally got my kit for free from Riverside, of course I damaged my pipes 3 times a very expensive lesson learned. Still have issues with the roof cracking and leaks. plan to sell/trade it for a better and more well thought out unit from a manufacturer with experience in building RVs

      • merlinjr01 says:

        Very sorry to hear about your experience. Although I was concerned about the ground clearance as you have experienced, was able to work around it until it was corrected–about six months. I do appreciate your comment and relating your experience.

  6. P Martinez says:

    After reading your post, I sent a note to the email listed in the Contacts section. It has been six weeks and absolutely no word. So I’ve been paying for a trailer for a year that sits in the driveway because it can’t be towed to any of my typical camping spots. What a waste, and the manufacturer could give a hoot. I’m glad you got some guidance, but I’ll be selling mine at a loss and getting something that I can actually tow down the road.

  7. Mike says:

    I have raised my 177 3″ and did a mod to the sleeping area. Took it 1600 mile from Washington to TX then NM, AZ and back to WA. Wish I could post pictures?

    • merlinjr01 says:

      Sounds like a great trip. Apparently the mods were worth it.

      • Mike says:

        The dealer did the mod. They got the kit from the factory. The lift came after the trip but the sleeping are mod had to be done before the trip. The head banger shelve had to be moved to put in a pillow top mattress. Sleeps great now. My only main problem was when I stated my trip I found that the wheel wells were leaking about the time I got to Boise, Idaho. Got the leak fixed the next day and was on my way. Had a lot of compliments on the great job restoring the trailer. The looks on the faces when I told the it was new.😜

      • P Martinez says:

        Thanks for the reply. Sounds like I need to give my dealer a call now that the kits seem to be available. A year ago the dealer offered their own welding modification that I passed on. Happy and safe travels!

    • P Martinez says:

      Did the dealer perform the lift? A couple of my friends said they have used mod shops to do some trailer lifts for them, so just wondering. If I do keep my 177, I was also thinking about a sleeping area remodel based on some ideas culled from the “Tiny Houses” TV show. If you could figure it out, could you upload photos of the sleeping area changes?

      • Mike says:

        The dealer did the lift mod. They got the parts from the factory. I did the shelf mod. Sorry I don’t see where to upload pics.

  8. merlinjr01 says:

    Mike, can you answer P. Martinez’s question? In our case, I had the trailer lift mod done at the factory, which happened to be “on the way” during a trip..

  9. Mike H says:

    We just purchased a 2016 177 SE and are out on our shakedown weekend trip to Cumberland Mountain State Park and after 2 rainy days we are very pleased with the camper. I am assuming they have already made the moods to the 16 model because the height seems to be good and have not come close to dragging. So far the mattress seems to be comfortable and I only hit my head once and that was during packing.
    Are there any other quality issues anyone is having?

  10. Brian says:

    Hi, Everybody –

    I’ve been full-timing in a new 177 SE for five weeks. About 3000 miles covered, camping from western North Carolina up to northern Maine. My 177 SE has been spectacular. The only problem was a failing water pump. The factory coordinated and authorized a quick replacement, and everything was a piece of cake.

    Build quality is excellent. I get the feeling that the factory genuinely wanted to supply a quality camper. None of the issues described in Jeff’s post (low ground clearance, stiff mattress, low rear shelf overhead clearance) have been any trouble at all. I have had this crate on one or two extremely bad roads (one camp was at the end of a 3.5-mile dirt road that took an hour of rock crawling to get to) and haven’t touched anything but the tongue jack, and that only barely. Woodwork, appliances, fit and finish—all are excellent. I’m really enjoying the camper.

    In the rear, one of the taped seams between wood wall panels seems to be exercising a little. The forward panel is above flush with the rear one. I’m hoping that isn’t an indication of anything wrong underneath. I didn’t notice it sooner, which means it might have been there or it might be new.

    I’m pulling it with a 15-year-old Lexus LX470, and towing it is unbelievably easy. I have to stomp on it on the uphills, but there are never any control issues. I have a sway control bar but realize that it adds nothing to towing comfort under normal conditions. I’ll put it on when I have to deal with higher winds.

    Which I’ll expect as we head west and south, where the desert and prairie winds can blow hard.

    A question for the forum: the weather forecast along my route has changed, and temps are expected to drop a couple of degrees below freezing for a few hours around dawn on two upcoming mornings, Does anyone have any advice concerning the urgency of preventing damage from a minor freeze like that? I’m kinda new to it all and don’t want to crack anything.

    Thanks, and especially to Jeff for the forum.

    Brian
    Currently in Muncny Valley, PA

  11. Weimin says:

    I just got a new 2016 177SE 2 weeks ago. We took it out camping last weekend and loved it. My concern is the new 2106 177SE has cargo capacity of 520 Lb (water included). This leaves ~ 380 Lb of loading any other items. Do any of 177 SE owner has weight limit problem.

    thanks

    Weimin

    • merlinjr01 says:

      It is my understanding that the 177s have a maximum gross weight of 3500 lb. Ours has an empty weight of 2530 lb., leaving 970 lb. for stuff (including water). Unless we are going somewhere water is absolutely not available, we never travel with water in the fresh water tank (nor any of the other tanks). The reality is, travel dry and get an additional 160 lb of cargo weight back (Figure water at 8 lb/gal and a 20-gal freshwater tank). After many years of both hauling trailers and flying airplanes, gross weight is always a trade-off: for trailers it is water vs cargo, in airplanes it cargo vs fuel. According to your figures, your unit has an empty weight of 2980 lb. Not sure what makes the empty weight of the SE more–maybe the wood interior. Of course, pulling the camper with our pickup allows us to carry much more stuff in the truck. In my opinion, we usually have too much stuff! – Jeff

      • Brian says:

        How did you determine the empty weight? Mine has no indication of the empty weight anywhere that I’ve been able to find. All it has is the same sticker with the 520 pound cargo limitation Weimin describes, which, if water is carried, means only 360 pounds of cargo. But the base figures aren’t listed on mine.

        By the way, none of the holding tank capacities are listed anywhere, either.

  12. Weimin says:

    Jeff

    thanks for your inputs. I agree that carry water is a waste. As for the empty weight, Yes, the 177SE yellow sticker only saying max cargo weight is 520lb. but not empty weight. So I agree that my unit empty weight should be 2980 lb. I am not sure what is extra 400 lb weight comes from. May be wood interior or upgrade queen size mattress.. with only ~500 lb tool cargo capacity, I have to very careful what to put into trailer,,—– Weimin

  13. merlinjr01 says:

    Weimen, Well, I have what amounts to sort of an answer. First of all, I did my on calculations wrong, and you are right, there is no empty weight listed. There is, however, a small placard (yellow sticker) on the inside of the screen door that says the maximum weight of cargo (for my trailer) is 760 lb (not the 970 I mentioned above). If the GVWR is 3500 lb, and maximum cargo is 760, then the manufacturer thinks the empty weight is the difference between the two, or in my case 740 lb. That same yellow door sticker says a full load of water (I assume they mean fresh water) is 166 lb (at 8 lb/gal, that is slightly over 20 gal. As for the volumes of the various holding tanks, that is listed in the trailer’s information brochure, and should be in the information that comes with the trailer. I went to the Riverside RV website and checked the 177 data for the tanks.

    Two places to look for your maximum cargo weight: on the Tire and Loading Information data on the side of the trailer–the line below the title says the cargo load should never exceed 760 lb. That information is also on the yellow sticker on the inside of (my) screen door. Mine is a 2014 center bed. Cargo weights may differ between models, although, according to the website, the GVWR is the same.
    I think I have exhausted my understanding of trailer weights. Jeff

  14. merlinjr01 says:

    Sorry, Brian, I got the wrong name in responding to you. Jeff (I think)

  15. Brian says:

    I think I see the difference here—you’ve got a 177 and I have a 177SE. That might account for the ~200 pound difference in empty weight. Mine is placarded for a max cargo weight of 560 pounds. The difference probably comes from the birch paneling and possibly the newer version of the bed. That would be close enough and explain my confusion. I still think the factory is derelict in not providing with each unit its equipment specs. The sales brochure doesn’t qualify, in my mind, as a handbook, especially as the factory admits that they change thing as they go along (which they also told me when I was just there).

    Apart from that, I just had something break. It was minor, but could have turned into a bigger problem and it relates to the discussion on carrying water. Supporting the bottom of the fresh water tank is a piece of particle board that keeps the bottom of the tank from bowing downwards too far when filled. that piece of wood spilt in half and sent the tank down to about seven inches off the ground, when empty. Ketelsen RV, a dealer in Hiawatha, IA, did an immediate warranty repair with fast response from the factory. No one, however, came up with what seems to me to be an acceptable fix. All that was done was to beef it up a little with two laminated pieces of 1/2-inch ply instead of one 3/4-inch. The split in the wood support was lateral, and some kind of lateral strap that will still allow for expansion of the tank might be what is called for. The tech was reluctant to do anything like that, though, for fear of pressing up on the floor when the tank was filled. Who knows.

    I don’t know what caused the failure. It could have begun with pressure from filling the tank, or it could have been caused by rough roads. Don’t know.

    The repair would not have required a shop. It would have been easy enough to do, but I took it in because the dealer wasn’t far off my route, and as a warranty issue, it seemed better to let officialdom run its course on the repair.

    Other than that, I love the camper. We’ve been from Asheville, NC to the northeasternmost tip of Maine, then around New England, PA, OH, IN, MI, IL (just passing through), WI and MN. Now in Iowa for several days, heading south. On no day do I have any idea where the next day will find us. The camper has proven itself to be comfortable in temps down to 25º F. That happened on a night when forecasts called for only an hour or two at most around 30, and I decided to chance it with an empty fresh water tank (as empty as I can get it with the drain not being at the low point), dripping faucets and the the heater filled with hot water, on top of heating the interior. I woke up in the middle of the night and saw that it was 25 and thought, ‘Uh-oh.” Too late to do anything about it. Fortunately it was a windless night, so no wind was chilling the exposed pipes. The camper might have been below freezing for four or five hours.

  16. Colocamper says:

    We purchased our 177 SE in Colorado at the first of October and have taken two weekend trips and have been overall very pleased – thinking to ourselves “Why haven’t we bought one of these earlier?” However there are a few things that I see posted here that I can comment and address.
    We are pulling it with a 2500 Dodge Ram so power is no issue even with full tanks. No sway issues at 65 mph or in windy situations. Our first shake down trip was fairly close to home and involved a FS road that was probably at the top end of what I’ll travel in the future. We took it slow and had no issues but I can see some potential serious clearance problems with anything rockier and/or potholes. Our second trip was into New Mexico and we stayed at sites with power, water, etc. Leveling with the jacks is kind of tough, I wish the tool/system was more robust and I’ve purchased blocks which are handy.

    When purchased the dealer checked all systems and found a defective AC unit. No big deal, we can get it replaced and since we are in the central mountains, we don’t need it now. Another slip up was the remote for the FanTastic Fan which the dealer ordered and we picked up a few days later.

    Our water pump is being replaced now after non-stop running during the second trip. We just used the main switch when we wanted water but I see other posts indicating other pump issues here and the dealer told me they had a similar problem on one sold earlier in the summer.
    The camper is sweet, although the mattress is a little hard. The furnace has kept us plenty warm and the fridge has nice space. I’ll be interested to see what happens after a few more uses in terms of wear and tear.

  17. Weimin says:

    Jeff

    thank you for your info and reply!

    Weimin

  18. Barb Campbell says:

    We just traded our 2009 rPod for a 177 SE. We’re on a 5 month trek and the ‘spousal leap’ became too stressful. We love the look and the layout of the Retro, especially the full size vs. short queen bed. Unfortunately, two nights of Florida rain has brought a leak to our attention, and we can’t determine the source. A puddle appeared on the floor next to the wheel well. We checked plumbing connections; they are all tight. The water is not originating from inside. Could it be faulty caulking at the awning or above the window? We are going back to the dealer next week, but are concerned, since we’ll be on the road from Florida to California to Oregon, then back to Wisconsin. Are these units known to leak?

    • merlinjr01 says:

      Barb, I have heard of no other units that leak, but I don’t hear everything. Ours has been tight and dry for two years now. It does sound like a leak caused by the rain. The dealer should be able find and caulk or otherwise fix the leak. We did have a leak due to a poor connection under the shower the first week we had our unit. This occurred with several new owners, but the dealer was able to fix it quickly. This showed up as a puddle in front of the bathroom door. Are you saying that you traded campers in the middle of the trek. Bold move.

    • Mike says:

      I had a leaking problem with my 177 and it was on both sides. It was the wheel wells. The corners of the metal was where it was leaking. The dealer in Boisie Idaho fix it and I was back on the road. Has been fine and believe me living in Washington puts it to the test.

    • Mike says:

      The wheel wells were leaking on mine.

  19. merlinjr01 says:

    Mike, Thank you for the comment.

  20. Gary says:

    Hello everyone I am really interested in the White Water retro 177se.. I’ve noticed some mixed reviews on the unit.. Does anybody have a newer 2016 that can share with me their opinions on it.. I know from doing my own research that the newer units have improved quiet substantially.. Do the newer 2016 units come from the factory with the suspensions lifts installed.. I know some people have had issues in the past with the low clearance of these trailers. Also my wife & I love to bike when we travel is there option for a 2″ bike receiver so we can tow our bikes on the back.. Thanks again for any feed back & happy safe travels!!!!

    GC 1/23/16

  21. Gary says:

    Hello everyone I am really intrested in the White Water retro 177se trailer.. I’ve read some mixed reviews on them.. Their website isn’t that informative. Does anybody have a newer 2016 that they can give me their honest assessment of them.. I known in the past the older units had issuses with the underneath low clearance but are they now making the newer trailers with a lift in the suspension. Also my wife & I love traveling with our bikes when we hit the road. Is there an option or can you get a 2 inch bike receiver on the bumper to transport bikes. Thanks for any feed back. Happy & safe travels!!!

    • Gary says:

      Brian, that’s a shame sorry for your troubles… Reading your past post you started off loving your trailer and only having minor problems in October to full blown headaches now.. They look really cool & I love the retro look but they also look like they lack the true quality of a well built trailer.. I was planning on going this spring to a local dealership in NJ with my wife to check them out & really inspected it up close before I make that kind of investment but thanks to your post I am really having second thoughts.. I love the retro style or the look of a classic canned ham trailer but other then an Airstream which is a very expensive the options out there are very limited.. Thank you for your post Brian & I hope Riverside stands behind their product & does the right thing by you… Keep us posted I am intrested in your outcome. Safe travels….

      GC 2/13/16

    • Joe says:

      Before you make your decision check out the Gulfstream Vintage Cruiser. It appears to be constructed far better than the Riverside RV’s an it has that Retro look. I, like you was taken by the Riverside appearance, but after reading about Brien’s nightmare I am having my reservations. I e-mailed Riverside RV with several questions but have not received a reply. You would think that if they wanted to make a sale they would of responded to a potential customer. I am close to pulling the trigger on the Gulfstream Vintage Cruiser model 19ERD. Good luck in your search for a Vintage RV.

      • Brian says:

        I haven’t had time to update, but I will be posting to say that Riverside went above and beyond to repair all my issues. I am very satisfied with what they did, including a 900-mile drive by the owner and his wife to come to the campground where I was to see to the repairs themselves.

        They completely renewed my faith in the brand, and to some extent, in humanity.

        I would, if I could remove the original negative post, because I wouldn’t want a company like that to be damaged.

      • Brian says:

        By the way, communications is the only problem with Riverside. I think it has to do with Amish culture more than anything else, but that may be an assumption. Once they learned of my problems, the really went out of their way to fix everything.

        And on the Gulfstream—watch out. They have one of the worst reputations among RV mechanics. Ask around. Every time I ask about them, they are at the top of the list of the ones techs say to aviod.

      • Joe says:

        Thank you, this is good information for me. This will be my first RV and I want to have as much information as possible before I make my decision on a RV. I do know that I have a preference to the Vintage retro style trailers. As you have stated many RV’s looked beautiful to the eye but what about the construction you can not see ???? I am now rethinking Riverside based on they finally responded to you. I would of responded also after reading you 3,000 word rant on them. I guess the squeaky wheel gets the grease,

  22. Yves says:

    Is the lift kit covered under the warranty?

    • merlinjr01 says:

      Yves, I do not know how the lift kit is managed financially. I think most buyers have had it installed at no cost, but I do not know that for sure. The best option is to contact your dealer.

  23. merlinjr01 says:

    I have no idea. Again, if it is a warranty item, dealers should know. I just assumed that it became an option–cost or no cost, I have no idea.

    • Mike says:

      Thank you, The reason I asked was because I had to pay over $200 to have my lift installed. I will call Riverside tomorrow.

      • P martinez says:

        I have a 2015 177 Retro and had been trying to get in touch with Riverside RV on the lift kit issue to no avail, so went back to my dealer’s service center again. After many months of back and forth about whose responsibility the defect was, I decided, in the interest of time, to just have the dealer order and install the lift kit. Imagine my surprise a few weeks back when, while it was still on order, the service department calls me and said Riverside was supplying the lift kit for free. Of course I had to pay for labor ($200), but at this point I wanted to put this camper to use after having it sit in my driveway for two years. I picked it up yesterday and the lift kit makes the difference – no scraping or gouging this time, with the tanks well above the ground. Hopefully Riverside is doing the right thing and giving this part to all customers who need it.

    • Joe says:

      Jeff, Do you have any information or experience with Riverside’s model # 195 ?

  24. Joe says:

    Does anyone have any experience with Riverside model # 195 ?? I am thinking about purchasing one. Is the quality there ??

    • Joshua says:

      My wife and I bought a 195 about a month ago. We have enjoyed it so far.

      I had one minor plumbing issue (loose connection) that was quickly repaired by my dealer. Since this is my first trailer, I have nothing to compare it to.

      My wife and I have had it out three times and have been very happy with it. We will be taking it out for a longer weekend over Easter.

      My one piece of advice would be to swap out the OEM shower head. It was miserable. It did not consistently blend hot/cold water and had extremely weak pressure. We are looking at the Oxygenix (?) shower head. It seems to be the one that everyone is recommending.

      • Joe says:

        Keep me posted on your camping experiences with your Riverside 195. Also, did you get the birch wood interior ? And if so is dark is a tad dark inside ? Thank you for responding to me. Happy Camping with you Retro 195.

  25. Gary says:

    Brian, that’s great so Riverside stood behind their product & their name.. They made good on all the repairs… I am just a little confused did you drive to the dealer or the factory for the repairs… What about the windows that didn’t operate correctly & had drafts & also the gaps behind the bedroom closets. So in essence they built you a brand new trailer… would you still recommend the White Water Retro trailer… Can you post pictures of the rebuilt trailer.. You are still in the rebuilt honeymoon phase.. I am hoping for u that all this is behind you now… Brian please keep us posted. I will probably still go this spring with my wife to look at these units up close & personal. Joe, I saw the Gulf Stream Retro & they do look like a well built trailer but to me it doesn’t have that true retro feel other then the aqua or the red color.. The finishes aren’t really retro to me.. I do really like the regular Gulf Stream Vista trailer..I will be this spring going to both a White Water & a Gulf Stream dealer to check them out!! Joe, keep us posted if you do get one. I liked to know your experience & your opinion on them… Safe travels to all!!!!

    GC 3/4/16

  26. LBR says:

    Thank you for your blog! We are two weeks away from closing the deal and heading out in our Retro RV 177SE! We will purchase and then set up camp very near the dealership. The dealer offers first time set up and take down training.
    Until now, we have been tent campers. This RV will be our very first venture into the world of RV use. I’ve searched youtube high and low for demonstrations on water hook ups, water use, water dump, electricity, etc. While I can find many tutorials on RV’s in general, I don’t see anything that is Retro Rv specific. If you were in my shoes, desperate for knowledge, where would you go for information? Many thanks!

    • merlinjr01 says:

      I understand your concerns about wanting to know more about your camper. First, essentially campers are campers: There is noting particularly unique about the RV177 compared to other campers. Hook ups, etc. are all pretty much the same. A good dealer will show you everything you need to know about your camper, and if new to trailer camping, will show you how to hook up, connect, dump, etc. Almost anything you want to know can be accessed by a quick google search–just use specific terms for your search; i.e., “30-amp camper hookup,” “emptying the black water tank,” or “connecting a trailer to a tow vehicle.” Also look for “checklists” for “connecting your camper.” I suggest, that you make your own checklist, and make “hooking up” and “setting up” a repeatable routine. A printed checklist will help prevent forgetting something like trailer lights or safety chains or stabilizer jacks. I am speaking from experience here. My wife teaches a trailer safety course for Go RV and has a printed checklist. Look in the About section of my blog for my email address and send me a note and I will send you a copy of our RV177 checklist. Mostly, pay attention during your dealer familiarization that you already have planned. Finally, before you take off on your first real camping trip. I suggest practice events: Hook up the camper and take it for a short drive, return and disconnect and park it. Two or three such events, including briefly pulling it on a major highway, will raise your confidence so that you can enjoy the camping experience.

  27. KATHY & BRIAN PLYTER says:

    Hello everyone! My husband and I ordered theWhite Water retro 177se trailer. Our first trip will be in mid June of 2016, after which we will post pictures and comments. We live in Huron NY, between Rochester and Syracuse. We camp during the summer in the Adirondacks. Happy camping to all.
    Kathy and Brian

    • merlinjr01 says:

      I hope you will enjoy your 177 as much as we have.

    • John says:

      Kathy and Brian, we live in the Adirondacks. Considering 2017 177SE. Wondering how your experience with it has been this past year? John

      • merlinjr01 says:

        We continue to really enjoy our RV 177. It will be out on weekend trips of 75 to 200 miles for the next three weekends. This June we are planning a 2500-mi, 16/18-day trip from Tennessee to Utah (Bryce Canyon +), then north to the Tetons and Yellowstone, then back east to Devils’s Tower and Mt Rushmore, and lots of places along the way. We really like the size and ease of operation. It is very easy to wake up in the morning and decide to go somewhere for the weekend.

  28. Gary says:

    LBR Kathy & Brian congrats on your new purchase & soon to be new purchase of the Retro 177se… Please keep us all posted on your experiences.. My wife & I are going this spring to check them out… I love the retro style & they look like the perfect size for 2 people… I hope u love the trailer & the quality meets all your expectations… Please let us know!!! Happy safe travels!!!!

    Gary 3/7/16

  29. Liza58 says:

    We have been to the local dealership and totally fallen in love with the Retro 177. At the same time we are looking for a new car, and now we are wondering how big a car we will need to be able to tow it safely. We don’t want a truck and would really not want a gass guzzler like any V8. My question is if a mid-sized SUV like the Toyota Highlander V6 would be able to pull it? Our camping trips usually extend to 3 to 4 trips per season in our local Northern California area. What are people’s experience about towing?

    • merlinjr01 says:

      Liza, Thank you for the comment. The best advice is to simply look up the vehicles you are interested in, and check their towing capabilities. It is available on line, or stop by a dealer and ask questions. We pulled a similar trailer with a Hundai SUV for a couple of years.

    • Mike says:

      I have towed my 177 from Seattle to Killeen, TX, then toPheonix and back to Seattle. 6000 miles with a Toyota Tacoma 4.0 V6. The Highlander has a smaller V6. The equal to the Tacoma in an SUV would be the Toyota 4Runner. It also has the 4.0 V6. I ordered towing mirrors for my Tacoma and that was the best thing I could have done.
      Good luck on finding your vehicle for towing.

    • Mike Hodgson says:

      The 2016 Honda Pilot awd has a towing capacity of 5000 lbs and is good on has.

      • brooks156 says:

        We have a 2005 Pilot that’s about to be traded in (over 200k miles) and while things were working properly, it towed our 2015 Retro 177 with ease. Yes, it struggled a bit up inclines, but performed well overall. We have a weight distribution hitch and sway bars, making it feel better than when we towed our popup. With a properly equipped Pilot (transmission oil cooler, integrated brake controller, etc.) I have no qualms recommending it for towing the 177. Would a truck be better? Most likely, but we prefer an SUV and will be getting another Pilot before camping season.

      • merlinjr01 says:

        Thank you for the feedback. We towed the equivalent of a Retro 177 with a Hyundai Santa Fe. Agree that there is no need to go overboard with a towing vehicle for the Retro 177.

      • Mike says:

        You may want to varify this but, when asked, Whitewater recommend not to use a weight distribution hitch. I can tell from my experience that an anti sway bar will work just fine.

      • brooks156 says:

        Interesting, since the RV dealer sold it to us when we bought the Retro. Personally, it has been quite difficult to use, and a safety issue due to the high tension and potential for a “runaway” spring bar. Thanks for the heads up – I’ll do some research and see if I can get by with just the anti sway.

  30. merlinjr01 says:

    Incidentally, our tow vehicle, an F-150 with 350 V8 had a weight distribution hitch for a heavier trailer we had before the Retro. We have no issues with the truck pulling the Retro–it is “rock-solid” behind us–a very comfortable drive.

  31. Gary says:

    Hey folks I am finally going next week to check out the white water retro 177se. When I talked to the dealer (they just got a bunch in) he highly recommends sway bars for traveling… I currently drive a V6 highlander with a 5,000 pound towing capability.. Is it necessary to drive with sway bars? Is the dealer just trying to up-sell me? He said because of the light dry weight (2,800 pounds) & the single axel construction it could move a lot with winds or high speed.. I just wanted to see if people use sway bars when towing their retro trailer. Also, I noticed these trailers don’t come with a black water flush system like most new trailers now a days.. Is this overrated? I am not keen on bringing a hose into the trailer to flush out the black tank. Any feed back would be greatly appreciated… Thanks again & safe travels to all!!!!

    GC 3/25/16

  32. David says:

    Hello Everyone – we bought a 2016 Red & Grey 177SE in September 2015 and pull it with a 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport-turbo which has a 3500 lb towing weight. I’m no hitch expert, but we have some sort of bars (load distribution?) that hook into the hitch and attach to the trailer frame with chains. Without them, the Santa Fe sinks down too far when you hook up the trailer. With them, the car lifts up and is nice and level. We have a sway bar, but don’t use it all the time. We have towed it from Texas to Zion National Park and the Grand Canyon without any problems. Just went to Monahan’s Sand Hills in west Texas and it handled the winds on I-20 nicely. This is our first camper and we are really happy with everything about it.

    • merlinjr01 says:

      Thank you for your post. Informative.

    • sherry says:

      So good to read your post about the Hyundai Santa Fe sport-turbo. I have the exact vehicle. I just don’t have a tow hitch. I’m interested in the 166 and was going to have a towing hitch installed by Hyundai. Did you have the tow package on your vehicle when you purchased it?

      • merlinjr01 says:

        This isn’t David, but we had a Hyundai Santa Fe (2005 or 2006) new from the dealer and it had a hitch (the receiver) installed. We used it to pull a trailer heavier than the 166 and it did an acceptable job, even in the eastern mountains. Now we use a Ford 150 truck, which I definitely prefer.

      • David says:

        Hi Sherry – no we had the hitch and load distribution bars added by the RV Dealer when we bought the camper. The load distribution requires some parts to be attached to the camper frame. The 166 might be light enough to tow without the bars, so you could have the hitch installed by Hyundai and add the load distribution later, if necessary. We have no problem pulling the 177se with the sport turbo, so I bet the 166 will tow really well. Let us know if you get one, I’m sure you will enjoy it. We are loving ours and haven’t had any problems so far.

  33. Lyn Banville says:

    Hello, I have enjoyed reading everyone’s comments. In 2013 I purchased the 150 but saw the 177 in 2014 and really wanted the island bed. I also liked the promise of the “Amish built” trailer with an all aluminum frame. I purchased my Retro 177 3/15/14. I love this trailer. However, slowly over time this trailer is not living up to its “Amish” quality promise. Shortly after taking delivery I noticed that the stove top was not bolted to the counter top; the left front window screen was not secured to the track and the kitchen counter extender was placed too close to the door to use. I had to remove it and re-position it. The first time I used the kitchen faucet, water spewed all over the place because the water hoses underneath were not fastened. Within 6 months I noticed that my moon caps were completely rusted. The left exterior rear panel screws are rusted. The rear tail lights stopped working in November 2015 (connections were rusted and fell off). I was able to replace the bulbs and the lights worked immediately. This same camping trip I also noticed that I had several, circular gray discoloration spots in various places in my linoleum floor. I just assumed it was dirt stains from camping. Scrubbing the floor did not remove the spots. Now, the biggest issue appears to be a rotted floor. A week or so ago while making the bed I stepped on the floor between the right side of the bed and the window. It felt very soft, almost as if there was no floor underneath the linoleum. My bare foot left an indentation in the floor. I put my hands on the floor and started pressing. It seems as though the floor is very soft in spots between the back side of the wheel well, the floor between the bed and wall and up to the closet door. I also have concerns about where the water from the AC unit drains. Does anyone know ? This soft floor is also on the same side as my AC wall unit. Unfortunately I have found at least one, if not two other 177 Retro owners with like problems. I have placed three calls to Riverside with no response. I called my dealer in Ocala, FL and they informed me the trailer is out of warranty. After a lengthy conversation with them they have agreed to look at it for me, reminding me of course that it is out of warranty. It is concerning to me that the manufacturer has not responded to my many calls. I am not very hopeful at this point since no one is concerned I have a 24 month old trailer with a likely rotted floor. If there are others with this problem, I would love to hear from you. Thank you for reading this entry.

    • merlinjr01 says:

      Thank you for your note. I confess I have not heard of anything similar. Our 177 is in its third year and seems as good as new. It goes out on trips at least six or seven times a year–long trips of 600 miles-plus, both dry camping and full services. Looking forward to more such trip.

    • Joe says:

      Riverside does not return e-mails or phone calls. This lack of customer service scared me off. I don’t care if they are Amish or not customer service is very important to me. They lost a sale !!!

    • Jeffrey Hlister says:

      Hi Lyn,
      I just posted the same issue with my 2015 177 Retro except my rotten floor is on the opposite side of the trailer. Regarding the A/C drainage; there is a piece of aluminum under the A/C unit with the edges bent up and silicone in the corners to form a makeshift pan. The “pan” is slightly angled toward the outside wall and is supposed to allow it to drip outside of the camper. The first time we used our A/C, I woke in the morning to find water all over the floor and on the counter. It had soaked some papers etc.. At first, I assumed I did not have the camper properly leveled so it did not drain correctly. Repeated instances of the same issue convinced me there I was an issue with the drainage contraption so I opened the end of the cabinet to investigate. That’s when I found that despite using a large amount of silicone in the corner of the pan, they somehow still managed to not seal the makeshift pan. I applied additional silicone and have not had any additional issues with it. I attribute this to poor design. The pan is made of nothing more than roof flashing bent by hand with silicone slopped in the corner. I used to be a carpenter and I am convinced that craftsmen and hacks alike come in all shapes and sizes. The term “Amish Craftsmanship” has been so abused that I actually shy away from products that proclaim they are as such. Had I known about this claim prior to my purchase, it would certainly have given me pause; nothing against and Amish person, or a Craftsman of any sort for that matter. BTW, my moon caps latest about 6 months as well. They were so rusted they were not salvageable.

      One other issue I have is that my hot water heater will randomly leak for no apparent reason and I will have water on the floor under my kitchenette. When I open the seats and dry up the water, there is nothing more. Thankfully, this has only occurred at times when the HWH was not being used so it was only cold water.

  34. Gary says:

    Lyn, that’s a shame… My wife & I just went this past weekend to check them out & we fell in love with them… We are really serious about purchasing one but hearing your post & Brian’s prior to that it really has us seriously contemplating if it is a smart investment… I know the new modules have the AC mounted on top & not on the side. It sounds like from your post the leak is potentially from the AC especially since the water damaged is on the same side… They have been making these retro trailers since 2010.. I am trying to see how many other people out there are having similar issues. I know Merlin has had his for 3-4 years with zero problems but it seems like you are rolling the dice if you do purchase one of these retro trailers.. I am going to check with the factory to see if they do proper water testing before they put the skin or walls up.. If they did simple QC they maybe able to eliminate a lot of these headaches… We love the look & the size but not the potential headaches.. Did you do proper yearly maintance & winterizing of your trailer? I hope things work out for you.. Safe trailers…

    GC 4-12-16

  35. Gary says:

    Joe, are you going with the Vista Crusier instead? I hear you I am a little leary as well some of these stories with water leaks faulty construction etc.. I don’t know what to do? Thanks…

    GC

  36. Lyn Banville says:

    UPDATE !!!!!! Please know I just spoke with Riverside RV. They have been very responsive to me the last few days and it seems they may be willing to look at the camper for me. I did email them pictures of the damage and they reviewed them. Stay tuned for updates, if I may. Thank you.

    • brooks156 says:

      Can you tell me what the trick is? I’ve been trying to get a response from them for two years! Just yesterday my dealer pretty much told me there’s nothing they can do financially to help me raise my Retro so as not to sustain damage like I’ve heard so much about on this thread. I’ve had it out once just to show the folks – I don’t dare take it camping because of the low clearance.

  37. merlinjr01 says:

    Not sure what the problem is–I have always gotten a response from Riverside when I have emailed or called. As for the clearance, the fix is simple. I don’t know if they have a kit to send to dealers or not, but that would be what I would ask–assuming you can get an answer. And really, your dealer should be able to find that out for you. To me, that is part of customer service.
    Merlin

  38. Gary says:

    Hey brook which retro trailer do you have? The lift kit isn’t that much & most if not all dealers can install it… Does anybody know what the proper ground clearance should be on a travel trailer? When my wife & I went this past wknd & saw the 177se the clearance looked ok to us.. I am not an expert & I am not sure if you hit speed bump or a pot hole that maybe another story.. Hey Lyn pleas keep everybody posted with your situation… I hope you get your retro trailer fixed… Send pics if u can good luck to all!!! Safe travels

  39. Lyn Banville says:

    Brook, the lift kit is about $125 and you can call your dealer and have them order it from Riverside. They will not sell it directly to you. I have tried. I reached Riverside at 260-499-4578 and pressed extension 108 for Laura. She is the only live person I have been able to reach and she has always been willing to transfer my call where it needs to go. She was instrumental in getting the conversation started for my trailer issues.

    Gary, I think the low clearance issue was resolved before the 177se rolled out…but I do not know that for fact. If I can figure out how to attach photos, I will ! Thank you for the support. Happy Trails everyone.

  40. merlinjr01 says:

    To all readers of this blog: I sent a note to Marvin Lehman, General Manager at Riverside asking about the lift kit and the issue with possible tire rub inside the wheel well due to inadequate clearance between the wheel and the wheel well wall. I asked if it could be adjusted on the camper. He responded in less than 24 hours with this: “Thanks for the feed back. Yes the lift kit can be ordered from a dealer. On the spacing issue, I don’t know if you can do that on the torsion axle. That is an issue that we have been fighting with the manufacturer of the Axle and frame. Their tolerance is not as close as we like to see.”

    Two things here: (1) It is my experience that Riverside is indeed responsive and (2) they are aware of at least some of the issues I have heard mentioned. It is my personal opinion that most of the campers that come out of Riverside are of a quality that most of us would respect, but there are occasional issues. When there is an issue, first go back to the dealer and ask them to communicate with Riverside on a fix. You may also want to communicate directly to Riverside and let them know the problem and who the dealer is that is dealing with the issue. Not all dealers are as responsive as others.

  41. LBR says:

    We purchased our 2016 Riverside Retro 177SE in March and have taken two spectacular weekend trips in the camper. Our maiden voyage was in freezing weather with snow falling and we’ve just returned from our second outing in the beauty of spring dogwoods. We couldn’t be more thrilled. Our purchase experience went well with a superb walk through, followed by a detailed orientation at campsite. We have not had any of the clearance problems some have reported. The little things continue to impress me: The quiet hum of the refrigerator, the wonderful remote controlled ventilation system, the comfortable mattress, the adjustable table in the dining area – all bring subtle delight. This camper has not disappointed. We are grateful we took the plunge and began this adventure! Thank you, Jeff for the blog and discussion.

  42. blackdoggs says:

    We found a lightly used 2015 177 close by for $16,500, the owner is negotiable. What’s a good offer? $13,500?. And problem ares I should look for? Thanks!

  43. Sandy says:

    We just ordered a new 2017 Riverside Retro 199RKS. It sounds like most of the issues were resolved. I’d love to know if anyone out there has any experience with the 199RKS. We have a slide with the dinette that makes the living area larger. We’re excited and hopefully won’t have any issues. I hope it doesn’t take too long for our order to be complete for camping season!

    • merlinjr01 says:

      Sandy, Keep us up-to-date on your adventures and experiences with the 199RKS. Happy trails.

      • merlinjr01 says:

        Sandy, I am really sorry to hear of your problem with the camper. Is there any way to determine where water is actually comin in? Could it be coming in around that window or down from the roof? A quick trip up a moderate ladder would let you get a look at the roof so see if there are any apparent breaks in the sealing. Please let us know how it is resolved.

  44. Jeffrey Hlister says:

    We purchased a new 2015 Retro 177 in March 2015. We have had a few minor issues, but I am pretty handy and have dealt with them myself. Overall we have been pleased with the camper. It’s been a few months since we have been out so we have been looking forward to the long Memorial Day weekend. So a few hours ago we were preparing for our latest trip and found a “soft” spot on the floor under the emergency escape window. I don’t mean kinda soft – I mean the only thing holding the particle board flooring together is the vinyl floor covering on top and the black weather wrap under the camper. It’s in a spot that really does not get walked on except when we are loading or unloading the camper. And it’s on my girlfriend’s side – she is quite lighter than I so that explains why we did not discover it sooner. I spoke to my dealer and was advised there is only a one year warranty but if I brought it in they could assess the situation and advise. Since my dealer is WAY out of state (I am in Tampa FL, they are in Corbin KY) I located one a bit closer to me in Lakeland and called to see if they would be able to help with the assessment. I was advised that with the one year warranty expired, I should probably contact the manufacturer directly first to see if there is any recourse before bringing it in. Interestingly enough, they asked if I had re-sealed the roof; Really? It’s one year old. They said they have issues with brand new units on the lot and warranty will not cover it so they have to do the repairs. To be fair, they did not specify if these repairs were on Retros, or just in general. I called the manufacturer and left a message. I suspect that since it is a 3 day weekend, they – like me – were anxious to get to it too. For now, I remain optimistic, but I am realist and fully expect to get the run around and ultimately end up fixing this myself. Could be a one-off issue, but I would be interested in hearing if anyone else has had a similar experience. Boggles my mind that they would use particle board for flooring in a camper. Definitely not chosen to reduce weight; definitely chosen to reduce manufacturing costs. Can’t wait to find out the rest of the cost cutting measures employed when manufacturing this unit.

    • M. Carroll says:

      I purchased my 177 in 2014 and the first big trip was 3500 miles, give or take a mile or two. We departed Seattle and planned to stay in Boise. When we went through the Oregon Blue mountains we hit hard rain. Needless to say we stopped short of Boise and when I opened the camper there was water all over the floor. Next day I found out from the dealer in Boise that the wheel wells were leaking from the spray of water from the tires. They sealed them with Henry’s and I have not seen a leak again. I, at that time, called my dealer and asked what the floors were made of. He said they were marine plywood.
      I wish you luck with the dealer. I have had very little with them.

      • Brian Beker says:

        Unfortunately, your dealer was either telling you what he thought you’d like to hear, mistaken or lying.

        According to the president of the company, Riverside RV uses OSB (oriented strand board). Marine plywood is what should be used, but isn’t. He told me that they used it because it was industry standard and because OSB is comprised of a higher percentage of glue than particle board, and so, supposedly a bit more water resistant, and it’s a better product overall, with greater longevity, than particle board. The use of particle board would have been egregious. The use of OSB is at least regrettable, because if water does make it to the OSB, your camper is toast. And the chances of water not making it to the OSB are more or less zero.

        From what I looked up just now, one of the problems with OSB is that if the edges are not sealed, and I did not see at the factory that the edges were sealed (though they might have been—but I don’t think so), water will seep into the sides and damage the wood.

        OSB has inferior water resistance, which, sad to say, means that the Retros—and any other campers that use this or particle board—will not last long.

        Here’s a brief discussion of particle board and OSB.

        http://www.doityourself.com/stry/osb-vs-particleboard

      • Don Parker says:

        We bought anew 2016 Retro 177 about two months ago. Our first trip was a short one and was a test trip. The shower leaked badly. Took it back to the dealer and they sealed everything and said that there was a poor seal job from the factory. Our second trip was over 600 mile round trip. We did not notice any problems until we got home and noticed a wet spot on the mattress locate below the wall mounted air conditioner. I figure that the water splashed out of the air conditioner when we moved it on the way back home. I am also concerned as the drainage of the wall mounted air conditioner. Any suggestions?

    • Jeff says:

      This is an update to my previous post on the soft floor in my 2015 Retro 177 which I took delivery of approximately 13 months before I discovered the damage. Sorry to report that I never heard a peep from the manufacturer. I actually went to a local RV dealer to trade it in but due to the damage, the trade value was so low, that I might as well have lit it on fire and roasted some marshmallows with it. Not like I expected much else, but I had to see. Since we have a trip coming up I decided to fix it myself. Here is how I did it in the event that this information will help anyone else:

      I removed the bed and closet panels then cut back the linoleum to reveal the sawdust that was once the OSB. (yes I referred to it as particle board in my original post – might as well be). I also found that in addition to the saw dust, both rear corners of the camper had active leaks as they were water logged and growing mold. I removed the entire floor from the rear of the camper to just before the wheel wells. I carefully cut the house wrap under the particle board to ensure I would have 6-8 inches of overlap for the repair. I purchased new 5/8 PLYWOOD and painted the bottom and all edges with two coats of exterior paint. I then wrapped the bottom and all edges with house wrap, removed the rear tire and mount from the camper and “slid”/drove the new plywood in from the rear. I then taped off the overlapping house wrap where the new floor meets the old. I also unscrewed the bottom edge of the rear siding and added a new piece of house wrap, overlapping the new plywood from the rear. This weekend I plan to seal all the edges, overlap, and transition points with spray-on automobile undercoating.

      I had first suspected that the damage was due to a leaking window or a leak in the roof traveling down the wall. While I did not open the walls, I did inspect areas that I could see and found no trace of water. This coupled with the comparably soaked corners one either side of the camper has led me to believe that the water source was spray from the wheels soaking the rear corners and/or water coming down the outside rear of the camper and exploiting the corner joints of the rear wall and floor. I guess time will tell if my assumption is correct, but I have no intention of ripping the walls apart unless I am forced to. That will probably be next years project ;-0.

      I also repaired my leaking shower drain, and cut the bed frame down to accommodate our 10 thick “house” mattress so that we wouldn’t have to jump into bed and my head would no longer hit the shelf. But those are subjects for another post.

      Thanks,
      Jeff

  45. I see there are a lot of comments on this blog. I created brand new forums for the White Water Retro community. Join in and contribute your ideas and questions! http://whitewaterretro.com/

  46. blackdoggs says:

    Thanks Jeff on your post regarding the OSB floors. Unfortunately this is a deal breaker for me. My dad has had 40 year old camping trailers in rainy Oregon and never experienced this. The Retro is such a fine trailer in all other respects, it’s too bad they wanted to save $100 and choose OSB over marine plywood. Rotted out floors in 2 years? You’ve got to be kidding.

    • H. Alexander says:

      Hi all. My 177 also had the problem with the rotting OSB flooring at about two years . However, the manufacture replaced it for me free of charge and caulked the entire perimeter of the OSB. Evidently, OSB is as good as or better than marine plywood if the edges are properly sealed. The vapor barrier that they rely on is simply not enough in some climates. There were no leaks at all in my unit, it was strictly a problem with the vapor barrier being insufficient to seal the edges of the OSB.

  47. Kimberly says:

    Does anyone know if you can temporarilly remove the refrigerator vent on top of the retro 177 in order to lower the overall height and store it in a garage. Without the vent, it would fit in my garage and that is an important deciding factor for me in my purchase due to HOA rules.

    • merlinjr01 says:

      Does anyone have an answer to Kimberly’s question? Also, you might post your questions at: http://whitewaterretro.com/

      • Jeff says:

        I do not believe you can remove the vent because you would be breaking the Butyl sealer that is coated on all of the roof protrusions. The vent is a two part unit; the base is sealed to the roof and the cover is held in place by 4 screws. So if you took the cover off, you may gain some reduction in height, however it would probably not be more than you would gain if you were to let most of the air out of the tires. Which, if you are that close on height, may be an option. Just don’t let the camper sit on flat tires in the garage; that would damage the sidewalls. It would be a bit tedious, to deflate and inflate the tires, but if you are that close and purchased a small compressor (Lowes/Home Depot), it may be an option.

  48. Kimberly says:

    Thanks Jeff. That is really helpful. I have a carport and the whole interior is 8’3″ so I couldn’t re-inflate once inside.

  49. gus says:

    guys i`m so proud to find this page , so anybody can help me? i want to buy riverside rv retro a 199 fk and i want to know if that model works on winter ? i can do some up grades and enjoy on winter?? i live in colorado . thanks so much

  50. Mike says:

    Has anyone walked on the roof of their 177. I want to seal my roof but don’t know if I can walk on it.

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