Conqueror Companion: Dream becomes nightmare





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  1. #1
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    Default Conqueror Companion: Dream becomes nightmare

    Conqueror Companion: Dream becomes a nightmare
    As indicated earlier on the 4X4 Community, we finally received our Conqueror Companion from Zambezi Safari Equipment. We received only the friendliest and best of service from them and they really took great care to prepare the Companion in every conceivable way possible. So off we went to Khutse National Park in the Central Kalahari, with great anticipation and really chaffed about our newest “toy”.

    Before we left, I carefully checked every conceivable thing on the bush caravan: the geyser (both gas and power), the water pump, etc. and then finally, I carefully and slowly filled the water tanks, while letting the nose cone down (in the light of problems reported by others regarding the filling of these tanks). When water was overflowing from both the breather pipe and the filling pipe, I naively accepted that the tanks were filled to capacity and we departed in high hopes, sure that most of the complaints regarding Quality Control by Conqueror would not come back to haunt us. We believed this because 1) Zambezi Safari Equipment took special care in checking everything; and 2) we somehow convinced ourselves that most of the previous complaints were not that serious, and/or were by now resolved by Mega Manufacturers, and/or came from people who had unrealistic expectations and were overly particular about small things such as plastic shavings in water tanks, etc. Boy, were we wrong!

    The first night, we camped at the Lion park outside Gaborone and although the camping site was rather poor and not to be recommended, we nonetheless experienced no problems. We set up camp in a jiffy, plugged into the electricity supply and enjoyed our G&Ts while watching the sun set.

    The next day we tackled the last stretch to Khutse. Expecting a rather sandy last 95 km from Lethlakeng to Khutse we were surprised to find a relatively good gravel road (although somewhat corrugated) up to the Kaudwane turnoff, with only the last 5-6 km to the gate with deep sand. To our relief we barely noticed the Companion behind us, even while going through very thick sand patches (with our Landcruiser stationwagon 70). When we stopped at the gate two disturbing things occurred: 1) we were informed by the friendly receptionist that the whole parked had burned down a few days ago; and 2) I noticed that the blower on the Companion wasn’t working anymore.

    With some apprehension we travelled the last few kilometres through the blackened landscape to our camping site at Khutse Pan 1. Fortunately the area around the camping sites was not burned and we were really impressed with the privacy and layout of the newly upgraded campsites. Each one with a neatly constructed longdrop and an open roof bathroom with a bucket shower – our kind of place. After unhooking I found that the one circuit breaker had tripped, causing the blower to stop working. I tried to reset it, but had no success. Unfortunately this is also the circuit breaker for the Fridge and all the lights, so Alta started panicking about all our meat that was going to spoil and I was thinking about the fast approaching darkness and the problems we were going to have with only one gas lamp and one torch between us. By that time my internal temperature was starting to approach the 40 degrees plus of the temperature outside.

    So we sat around the campfire, somewhat dejected, eating our steak (the most expensive meat) first, sitting in silence – unwilling to share our thoughts with each other. Before we went to bed, I finally tried to reset the circuit breaker, and low and behold, it reset and the lights were working. Maybe there was just a short on the blower, caused by the corrugations, and everything will now be fine, I told myself, as I fell asleep listening to the night sounds of the Kalahari wilderness – total bliss.

    The next morning we rose in high spirits and after a late breakfast started to explore the park. It was not that we expected thousands of animals at this time of the year, I mean it is the remoteness that we really came for, but to see only kilometre after kilometre of burned veldt, and only a few vultures and springbok at the waterhole, was nonetheless disappointing. When we arrived back in late morning Alta discovered that our National Luna fridge wasn’t working properly and that the fault light was flickering on and off. Out came the manual – SWAMBO always keeps the manuals and actually reads them! A light flickering once every four seconds means the wiring to the fridge was insufficient. I grabbed the manual from her while all the complaints about insufficient wiring in Conqueror products flashed before my eyes.

    A cursory investigation of the manual (and later research comparing different kinds of fridges) revealed the following: 1) A certain amount of amps are lost with every metre of wiring and one has to double the actual distance to take account of the fact that the current has to return to the batteries. 2) Thicker wires in your caravan would lose fewer amps per metre. 3) The compressor of the National Luna needs a lot of amps to initially kick in, especially at high ambient temperatures (which was the case during our Khutse trip). Conclusion: At high temperatures the wiring in the Companion will not be sufficient to keep your National Luna fridge working. (Apparently the Engel fridge is not so sensitive and does not need such a peak of amps to kick in at high temperatures.) We eventually saved our meat, when I took the fridge out of the Companion, connected a Hella plug to it and transferred the fridge to the back of my Cruiser. Unfortunately, even then, the fridge only worked correctly while the Cruiser’s engine was running.

    The water pump and geyser were working fine and we both had refreshing hot showers the first day. The second day was more of the same: I wetted my whole body, turned off the shower (to conserve water) and soaped in. Then I turned on the shower again and I almost succeeded in washing off all the soap. But just before I could wash off the last remnants of soap, the shower gave a few burps and the water stopped. I shouted at Alta to quickly switch of the water pump inside the Companion, but because she panicked at my frantic shouting and did not jet know all the finer detail of the powerpack, she couldn’t find the correct switch, so I rushed, out stark naked, partly covered in soap and ran for the switch. When I turned around SWAMBO was doubled over laughing and crying simultaneously: laughing at the spectacle and crying because she realised that we had just ran out of water!

    A quick check on the gravitation tap confirmed our worst fears – no more water. The front tank didn’t fill properly, notwithstanding the great care I took in trying to assure that it was properly filled. We were standing in the middle of the Kalahari desert with no water, except a few bottles of drinking water. When the circuit breaker kicked out again later during the second day, and I was only able to reset it at 3 o’clock the next morning, we decided to call it a day, cut our losses and head back home.

    When we arrived back at the entrance gate, the personnel were very friendly and they suggested that we should contact Big Foot (the firm that now handles the reservations for some of the Botswana camping sites) and ask them to transfer the four days that we were going to lose to a future date. This, Bigfoot promptly did, but unfortunately we could not recover our Park entrance fees.

    When we arrived back in SA we slept over at Zeerust (which was about 10 degrees cooler than Khutse) and plugged the Companion into the power supply. This did the trick, the fridge was now working again and we had no more problems with the electricity, confirming our suspicions that the wiring in the Companion is not sufficient to operate at high temperatures and that the wiring in both the Cruiser and the Companion were not sufficient to properly charge the Companion’s batteries – although the batteries were never below 12.05V.

    When we awoke the next morning we decided not to cut our holiday short, but rather spend the next four days in Pilanesberg (Bakgatla) where we would have power available. First, I refilled our water tanks, again with great care, but without any great hope that they were actually filled to capacity. We then got a nice secluded spot, far away from the ablutions and from the nearest tap and pitched camped. The fridge was working fine while the Companion was plugged into the power supply and the circuit breaker did not trip again. So things were turning for the better – or so we thought. We had a successful game drive, seeing a lot of white rhino and Tsessebe and returned after dark to the camp. “I want a nice hot shower,” Alta declared, so I switched on the geyser and after half an hour she disappeared into the shower cubicle. I was enjoying my usual G&T when I heard a popping sound and Alta started shouting. When I arrived at the nose cone I saw water spraying all over the place and quickly ran for the switch. I immediately saw that one of the water pipes popped off and while Alta was complaining about the cold wind, I quickly re-attached the offending pipe, making a mental note to check all the fixtures (there are about a million in the Companion) as suggested by various people on the 4X4 websites. Quickly I switched on the pump again, but Alta was shouting from the cubicle that there still was no water. When I arrived back at the nose cone I again saw water spraying all over the place. This time it was not a water pipe, but the pressure pump which had “exploded”. What an effort to clean a nose cone full of water!

    So I had to carry water to our camping site for the next three days and we had to walk the whole distance to the ablutions, but the electricity worked fine and we actually enjoyed the camping. One cannot deny that the layout of the Companion really is very good and it actually makes for very comfortable and pleasant camping.

    After arriving back in P-town, Zambezi Safari Equipment promptly took back the Companion and promised to take all effort to fix the problems, which also included a few other minor things such as a few doors which sagged and needed adjustment by retightening of the hinges, adjustment of the hinges on the roof of the Companion to ensure that it closes properly and a few other minor things.

    While our Companion was in for repairs we scanned the internet (and suggestions from 4X4 forum users) and eventually ended up at PBE (Pieter Barnard), who suggested that they re-wire the whole Companion, fit it with their improved powerpack, and replace the wires and connections which link the Cruiser’s auxiliary battery/alternator with the Companion. I am not technically inclined, but I knew that I would never again trust the existing electricity system in the Companion and decided to rather pay for the rather expensive “Rolls Royce” PBE electricity system, than to keep on having problems.

    In the mean time the water pump in the Companion was being replaced, a new and thicker pipe was installed to link the two water tanks and problems with the breather pipes were being sorted out. When I received the Companion back all the minor problems were expertly fixed by Zambezi Safari Equipment. So we took the Companion home and I immediately started filling the water tanks, while occasionally checking beneath the vehicle to ensure that water was being transferred between the two tanks. No problem, everything looked fine. Small quantities of water was also expelled through the breather pipes, as air bubbles came up through one (or both?) of them, showing that at least one of them functioned properly. The tanks were filling nicely when I suddenly heard a popping sound. I quickly fell flat (as if shot) and rolled back beneath the Companion. To my utter surprise I saw the front water tank bulging like a balloon. It had already bended all the brackets, the support running beneath it and the braking rod, as it continued sagging down. I quickly turned off the water and opened the gravitation tap in front. As water spilled out of the tank it regained its former form, but the damage was already done.

    So our problems continue, our dream has become a nightmare. The only lights in this long and dark tunnel are Martin and Braam at Zambezi Safari Equipment, who are always willing to fix the problems immediately and at their own cost and even to take extra measures to avoid that the same problems re-occur in future. But they are really batting on a corrugated pitch!

    From our experiences I can only conclude the following:
    Positive:
    The macro design of the Companion is superb. The layout is very good, it is very easy to pitch and to tow. I am really impressed by the friendly service from Zambezi Safari Equipment and their willingness to fix all problems immediately and at their own cost. You will go far to get better service today.
    Negative:
    One may conclude that we were just extremely unlucky with our Companion, because I have never heard from anybody who has experiences all these problems simultaneously. However, I refuse to accept that this was just an isolated case of a lack of Quality Control from Mega Manufacturers. The fact that most of our problems are also reported by other owners and the fact that all these problems could occur in one vehicle are indications that the manufacturers has not sorted out their Quality Control issues at all and that serious problems remain regarding the electricity and water systems.

    Would I recommend anybody to buy the Companion or Conqueror products?
    No, except if you are extraordinary patient, are willing to spend a large amount of money to fix the electricity and water systems and like to constantly fiddle with your caravan/trailer (e.g. if you are a Landrover owner J).

    Would I recommend other products?
    Unfortunately I must admit my dilemma. I really do not like any of the other products available and I would rather go on with my Oz tent or RTT for the wilderness at least until Mega manufacturers have sorted out their problems or another better product appears on the market in the future.
    Martin at Zambezi Safari Equipment has suggested that we accompany him to a meeting with Mega Manufacturers. We will inform you about the outcome of this meeting, and hopefully we will have better news after our next trip. All of you who sent private messages to ask our feedback on the Companion after our initial raving reports, thanks for your patience. We really waited for things to be sorted out but, well, here you have the answer.
    Peet

  2. #2
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    Peet, I'm really sorry to read about your bad experiences.

    Somehow, I get the feeling, I should be glad that I'm not a Companion owner anymore
    [B]Johan Prinsloo

  3. #3
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    Ek gaan begin swak trailers bou met goeie diens, sakke vol geld maak.
    Everything is a hammer.
    Unless it is a screw driver.

    Then it it a chisel.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uys View Post
    Ek gaan begin swak trailers bou met goeie diens, sakke vol geld maak.
    So wat probeer jy se? Gaan jy jou diens begin opskerp?

  5. #5
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    Nee, my produkte verswak
    Everything is a hammer.
    Unless it is a screw driver.

    Then it it a chisel.

  6. #6
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    Ek ken Conqueror al van 2001 af toe ek 'n aluminium canopy (lank voor Alucab beskikbaar was), by hulle gekoop het. Daardie tyd was hulle baie hoog aangeskrewe en tot vandag doen die canopy diens op my Colt, die een op die Cruiser van Alucab se uitleg het ek van die colt af gekopieer. 'n Vriend het toe later 'n sleepwa gekoop, hulle was toe nog wit geverf, wat die Desember erg geroes het by Torrabaai. Deur Conqueror reggemaak maar het agterna weer begin roes en is toe verkoop. In 2008 kry ons tussen Kubu eiland en Gweta 'n Prado met die groter Conqueror karavaan waarvan die eenkant se suspensie heel ingegee het. Hulp was toe reeds op pad en 2 dae later het ons hulle in Maun gesien ry so hulle was toe ok. 2 Weke terug kamp ons in Maroela in Kruger en daar kom toe 'n Pajero met die groter Conqueror karavaan en 'n Jeep Wrangler met die kleiner karavaan in. Hulle lyk mooi nuut maar die suspensies op albei squeek so dat dit my mal sou maak as dit myne was.

    Ek wil dus nie se hulle is sleg nie maar dinge is verseker nie reg nie. Enige mens behoort te weet die bedrading moet dik 25 of 35 mm sq wees oor enige langerige afstand op 12V anders verloor jy te veel volt en laai 'n agterste battery nie behoorlik nie. Die ander probleme klink egter nie vir my te erg nie en behoort maklik reg gemaak te word. Die beste sal wees om die karavaan vir 'n paar toetslopies te van oor naweke en dan sonder krag te kamp voor julle weer 'n langer toer aanpak.

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    I am glad I have Engel and Brakhah
    Toyota Prado 4.0l Petrol
    OME Suspension
    B'rakhah Ingonyama Offroad Camper

    Previously2002 Disco TD5

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    I have to say its great to hear about the service from Zambezi on the trailer!!!

    Pity about the problems though, they are actually pretty minor and can easily be fixed in production... sounds like a good, well thought out product other than wiring and water tank bleeding....

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    Goeie dag Peet

    Graag wil ek namens Mega Manufacturers en myself van hierdie geleentheid gebruik maak om omverskoning te vra vir enige ongerief wat veroorsaak is in hierdie verband. Ek persoonlik het ongelukkig gister eers verneem van hierdie probleem vanaf Zambesi en kom dus toe eers regtig betrokke raak. Ons het reeds die nodige vervangings parte bestel en is in die proses om dit aan te stuur PTA toe. Ongelukkig is hierdie alles aankoop parte wat nie deur ons self vervaardig word nie maar deur verskeie buite maatskapye.

    Bv die waterpomp - die pomp is reeds vervang en die betrokke pomp is terug na die vervaardiger waarop hulle terug laat weet het dat die druk verstelling foutief was, die pomp is sonder enige vrae, deur hulle vervang. Die water tenk wat pla is verskeie kere gebruik voordat die probleem opgedyk het, dit is ook opppad terug na die vervaardiger. M.a.w wat ek graag wil se( en nie verkonings maak nie) is dat hierdie parte gewerk het toe dit by die produksielyn nagegaan en getoets is. Wat die kragpak aanbetref, dit is ook n aankoop produk wat 100% gewerk het voordat die Conpanion Mega Manufacturers verlaat het. Met verdere ondersoek is gevind dat die yskas en die eksterne waaier op dieselfde skakelaar op die kragpak bedraad was, wat veroorsaak het dat die skakelaar uitskop wanneer die yskas in warmer buite temprature meer ampere trek. Weereens n geisoleerde probleem wat nie voorheen ondervind is op hierdie kragpakke nie. Die dikte van die draad wat tans gebruik word(wanneer reg bedraad) is deur ons getoets en so ook baie ander Conqueror eienaars en is voldoende en bevredigend gevind.

    Ons is die afgelope tyd deurlopend besig om kaliteit beheer op te skerp tot die hoogste moontlike vlak. Soos enige persoon wat in produksie betrokke is sal weet, is daar van tyd tot tyd probleme wat onvoorsiens opduik, dit sal nooit verander nie. Wat wel kan verander is die manier waarop dit benader en uitgesorteer word en ek dink as die res van die forum lesers eerlik wil wees kan hulle maar erken dat ons die laaste ruk baie gedoen het om kliente tevrede te kry en so te hou. Watter ander vervaardiger is bereid om sy kop uit te steek, sy pak soos n man te vat vir sy aandeel en die probleem dan so spoedig moontlik uit te sorteer. Ons draai nie ons rug op ons kliente nie en het nog altyd ons waarborge gestand gedoen.

    Peet, vir die veld wat afgebrand het kan ons ongelukkig niks aan doen nie maar vir die res kan ek jou verseker sal ons nie ophou todat julle tevrede Conqueror kliente is nie.

    Ek vra weereens omveskoning en ek glo ons sal binnekort ontmoet, groete.

    Gerhard
    Last edited by Dirk; 2010/10/06 at 02:30 PM. Reason: Formatting

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by GERHARD HARMSE View Post
    Goeie dag Peet

    Graag wil ek namens Mega Manufacturers en myself van hierdie geleentheid gebruik maak om omverskoning te vra vir enige ongerief wat veroorsaak is in hierdie verband. Ek persoonlik het ongelukkig gister eers verneem van hierdie probleem vanaf Zambesi en kom dus toe eers regtig betrokke raak. Ons het reeds die nodige vervangings parte bestel en is in die proses om dit aan te stuur PTA toe. Ongelukkig is hierdie alles aankoop parte wat nie deur ons self vervaardig word nie maar deur verskeie buite maatskapye. Bv die waterpomp - die pomp is reeds vervang en die betrokke pomp is terug na die vervaardiger waarop hulle terug laat weet het dat die druk verstelling foutief was, die pomp is sonder enige vrae, deur hulle vervang. Die water tenk wat pla is verskeie kere gebruik voordat die probleem opgedyk het, dit is ook opppad terug na die vervaardiger. M.a.w wat ek graag wil se( en nie verkonings maak nie) is dat hierdie parte gewerk het toe dit by die produksielyn nagegaan en getoets is. Wat die kragpak aanbetref, dit is ook n aankoop produk wat 100% gewerk het voordat die Conpanion Mega Manufacturers verlaat het. Met verdere ondersoek is gevind dat die yskas en die eksterne waaier op dieselfde skakelaar op die kragpak bedraad was, wat veroorsaak het dat die skakelaar uitskop wanneer die yskas in warmer buite temprature meer ampere trek. Weereens n geisoleerde probleem wat nie voorheen ondervind is op hierdie kragpakke nie. Die dikte van die draad wat tans gebruik word(wanneer reg bedraad) is deur ons getoets en so ook baie ander Conqueror eienaars en is voldoende en bevredigend gevind.
    Ons is die afgelope tyd deurlopend besig om kaliteit beheer op te skerp tot die hoogste moontlike vlak. Soos enige persoon wat in produksie betrokke is sal weet, is daar van tyd tot tyd probleme wat onvoorsiens opduik, dit sal nooit verander nie. Wat wel kan verander is die manier waarop dit benader en uitgesorteer word en ek dink as die res van die forum lesers eerlik wil wees kan hulle maar erken dat ons die laaste ruk baie gedoen het om kliente tevrede te kry en so te hou. Watter ander vervaardiger is bereid om sy kop uit te steek, sy pak soos n man te vat vir sy aandeel en die probleem dan so spoedig moontlik uit te sorteer. Ons draai nie ons rug op ons kliente nie en het nog altyd ons waarborge gestand gedoen.
    Peet, vir die veld wat afgebrand het kan ons ongelukkig niks aan doen nie maar vir die res kan ek jou verseker sal ons nie ophou todat julle tevrede Conqueror kliente is nie.
    Ek vra weereens omveskoning en ek glo ons sal binnekort ontmoet, groete.

    Gerhard
    Hmm..... Dis wat ons wil sien! Wil my conquest volgende jaar vervang en sa dit so annhou begin my mind terugdraai Conqueror toe. Peet, hou ons asb op hoogte.
    Everything is a hammer.
    Unless it is a screw driver.

    Then it it a chisel.

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    If I was the guys at Zambzi I wouldn't stock Conquorer any 'moer'- full stop.

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    Well done Gerhard for a very comprehensive and accommodating response. If all the product manufacturers/service providers responded in like fashion it would do their reputation the world of good, rather than losing them clients. I don't ever tow (trailers or caravans) as I prefer to be as light and compact as possible in the bush, but if I ever had to buy a caravan, I would take a serious look at a Conqueror because of this response.

    Tony

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    Gerhard dankie vir jou antwoord.

    Alta ons sien uit na jul terugvoer - hopelik is dit "plain sailing" van hier af.



    Ek het self my camper gebou, en die Warn relay het net 2 weke gehou .... terug na die verskaffers en hul het n nuwe relay ingesit (wat nou al meer as n maand werk). Die goed gebeur ongelukkig wel. Dit is die manier waarop jou handelaar en die verskaffer optree wat uiteindelik die verskil maak - en lyk my die keer is jy GELUKKIG !

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    Default Lip service

    I disagree with the "dankie Gerhard" comments. Dankie vir wat? Lip service?

    Alta's agonising over, and subsequent selection of a van and then the buying has been much publicised on the forums here. Much has been said about how the "Guys at Zambezi" have assured us that they will deliver a quality and WORKING product. Much has been said about the steps that Mega Manufacturing are taking to improve their quality. What crap!!.

    SERIOUSLY, how long are we to listen to lip service. Actions speak louder than words. For over R150 000 I would expect at the very very least that my van was 100%, not 95% or 96%, but 100% when I received it. Imagine if your Cruiser or Landy was 95% when you drove it out of the showroom, would you STILL be satisfied with lip service?

    I was considering the companion, but the proverbial straw has just swung my decision to another brand. I have still to see more than 2 complaints about their products on the forums.
    Toyota Fortuner 2.8 GD-6 4x4 Auto

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    Default Reply to Gerhard / Conqueror's message

    Gerhard van Conqueror Heidelberg,
    Dankie vir jou reaksie op ons “posting”. Ons wil dit graag baie duidelik stel dat ons nog nooit Conqueror se NASORG DIENS bevraagteken het nie. Dit is julle VOORSORG DIENS wat die probleem is. Nadat ‘n mens R169,000 betaal het (sonder wiele), verwag ‘n mens dat die produk darem meer op die pad sal wees as in die workshop. Ons is nie onrealisties nie en besef dat daar met ‘n “handgemaakte” produk altyd hier en daar ‘n probleem kan wees, maar Conqueror moet ook verstaan hoe frustrerend dit vir kliënte is indien hulle voortdurend hulle voertuie moet terugneem om reggemaak te word. Dit neem tyd en behels dikwels lang afstande en onkostes.
    In the light of all the reaction on the forum we would like to add the following few remarks:
    1) Conqueror and Zambezi Safari Equipment should be commended for their willingness to sort out any problems and honour their warrantees. Their friendliness and willingness to provide after sale service are indeed rare in today’s world.
    2) We agree that most of our problems are related to elements provided by outside manufacturers.
    3) We understand that manufacturers, such as Conqueror, are irritated by, what they perceive as clients, who can’t wait to run to public forums to complain about a product, instead of first sorting it out with them directly. However, this was not true in our case. We deliberately remained quiet for more than two months, while negotiating with Zambezi Safari Equipment to sort out the problems that would enable us to provide positive feedback to the forum. We were under the impression (we think correctly) that during this time Zambezi was in constant contact with Conqueror regarding our problems.
    4) We accept in good faith that Conqueror has during the past few months done a lot to improve their quality control.
    5) However, some quality control issues remain regarding products provided to Conqueror by other manufacturers. This needs to be sorted out with the manufactures AND by thoroughly checking all equipment before installing it. We are aware of the fact that Conqueror for these reasons have already switched to another manufacturer for their water tanks, but apparently all problems are not sorted out yet.
    6) Some of the problems are not mere quality control issues, but have to do with basic design problems regarding the electricity and water systems. This is illustrated by the fact that both these systems were tested and apparently worked fine when leaving the factory (which we don’t doubt). However, to us this fact illustrates that there are problems with how extensive these systems were tested and also begs the question under which conditions they were tested:
    a) Quality Control: Does Conqueror visually inspect each water tank and clean them out, to prevent possible blockages, before fitting them? Do they fill both tanks to capacity to ensure that the back tank drains properly into the front one? Do they ensure that both breather pipes function properly? We are convinced that our water problems could have been avoided if the above measures were taken, or if a thicker pipe that can’t bend and partly cut of the flow, was installed between the two tanks.
    b) Design problems: This pertains mostly to the wiring and electricity system. We have done extensive research on this issue and consulted various independent sources, including electrical engineers. Our conclusions are: When the batteries are fully charged and operating under normal ambient temperatures (the situation under which Conqueror probably tests their products) the wiring may be sufficient and the system may be working fine. But this is not the case when the batteries are slightly discharged (in our case 12.05V) or when temperatures are high and the Waeco and National Luna fridges battle to start their compressors. This was not only illustrated by the problems we experienced in Botswana (with our Companion and National Luna fridge) but also when we hired a Conquest with a Waeco fridge two months earlier and the fridge gave the same error message – although in this case it was in the Pilanesberg in the middle of winter. This may also explain why some people, who do not test their trailers or caravans under severe conditions, or who have Engel fridges (which apparently don’t need so much power to kick in) are not experiencing problems with their electricity. We strongly recommend that Conqueror investigates the possibility to give buyers an option between a more basic wiring system (slightly better than the current 4 - 10mm wires) and the option of a more robust wiring system for more adverse conditions, that is, with much thicker wires. It would also be nice if buyers can choose the quality of their power packs and if Conqueror investigates the possibility of using a second supplier for this second option. (We are fully aware of the reasons why Conqueror may not like to do this, but we nonetheless would like to urge them to reconsider.)

    We hope this clarifies our position and would be taken by Conqueror as constructive criticism.

    Peet and Alta

  16. #16
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    I've been reading this (trailer-prob's versus manufacturers) from the side for a long time already. I have zero interest in this as I bought none, however will risk 1 remark:
    Consumer Peet, your above response deserves a compliment. Sober, almost impartial, facts intermixed with a quite reasonable opinion.

    Manufacturers better spend on QA&QC rather than wasting oodles of time & money to after-sale fix what could, and in my opinion should, have been right first time. These concern luxury products @ luxury prices, and are apparently not bought solely by spoilt brats & moangats, as Peet proves above.

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    TLC 70 I tend to agree. I purchase a 10 year old car for R150K that has a zillion parts and have no problems, I purchase a brand new trailer for the same price and have problems whiled in the middle of nowhere and while I am supposed to be enjoying my holiday. And yes, these problems seem to be on going, lots of lip talk but no quality control. Conqueror has a problem, BUT long live the opposition, is democracy not a great thing!

  18. #18
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    Dave,

    another wholly different thing is that "Word of Mouth" in our electronic consumer age has meandered to "Word in Print", this forum for instance, forever documented. And yes, some, often anonymously, go as far as Word of Moan, however this cannot be reverted or averted.
    Manufacturers better accept this and adjust to it. A sterling reputation is just that, but must be backed up by continuous feeding. When the latter lacks, or is overwhelmed by negatives, drastic measures are called for, and for the life of me I cannot understand those who think some mere loafing will do instead. Success often turns to Nafi, and this is doom for a company - unless they want to sell or discontinue.
    People will always be people I guess ;-)

  19. #19
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    As ek by die Spur 'n Steak bestel en die ding proe bietjie af dan kan die Bestuurder nie vir my kom vertel ja maar hulle het probleme met hulle verskaffers nie. Ek het niks met die verskaffer uit te waai nie. Ek het die Spur advertensie op tv gesien. Toe word ek gebrainwash en ry dadelik daarheen. Ek het Spur betaal vir die steak. Wie of waar hulle hulle steaks koop het niks met my uit te waai nie. Ek betaal en hulle vra my 'n premium vir daai steak so hulle moet sorg dat dit reg is. Nie lus vir k#k verskonings nie.

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    I've just ordered a brand new offroad caravan and this thread made sure that it was not a Conquorer. It is all well and good saying that the problems are caused by stuff made by outside manufacturers, but the fact remains that they from part of the unit which was purchased. I cannot believe that Gerhard ends his post by saying "I believe we will meet soon". Gerhard, maybe you should have already met Alta, manufacturers can no longer hide behind dealers to keep clients happy, not in today's electronic age. I appreciate the fact that you will be taking your quality control to another level, but the current situation just cost you a sale of R210,000. In these types of situations promises don't help, it's actions and results that count.
    2011 JK Wrangler Rubicon 3.8

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