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Author Topic: Columbia Northwest introduces new line of PopUps  (Read 4465 times)

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Offline PopUpSteve

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Columbia Northwest introduces new line of PopUps
« on: September 14, 2011, 07:32:47 PM »
SOURCE: RV Daily Report
Quote
Greg Gerber posted on September 13, 2011 13:42

MT. PLEASANT, Penn. -- Columbia Northwest, with more than 25 years of making the Aliner, will introduce the Somerset line of pop-up camping trailers at the 42nd Annual Pennsylvania RV and Camping Show.

The Somerset name is a nod to Somerset, Penn., where Coleman Camping Trailers were manufactured for more than four decades. After the plant suddenly closed in early 2011, Columbia Northwest, located in the adjacent county, took action to keep the products, and their heritage alive, said Ned Collins, CEO.

"By hiring former employees of the plant, and working closely with many key dealers around the country, we were able to take much of what made their campers such an industry-leader for so many years -- quality construction, simple set-up, and a strong dealer network -- and make it part of the Somerset line of camping trailers," said Collins.

“In many ways, the Somerset line will be very familiar to a lot of people," said Allan Reeping, sales manager of tent campers for Columbia Northwest. "We stayed very true to the standard features, floor plans, and design that customers have always valued.”

A total of six models, ranging in size from 8 feet to 14 feet, will be manufactured as part of the initial Somerset line. Two of those models will be unveiled Sept. 15 at the Pennsylvania RV and Camping Show in Hershey.

Stoltzfus RV and Marine, a long-time Aliner and Coleman dealer, will be at the show with Columbia Northwest to make the introduction.

“It’s an exciting time for dealers and customers,” says Joe Hendrickson, general manager at Stoltzfus RV and Marine. “The introduction of Somerset means there are more quality options than ever before to enjoy the outdoors with friends and family.”

About Columbia Northwest
For more than 25 years, Columbia Northwest has manufactured the Aliner from its plant in Mt. Pleasant, Penn. As the original A-frame pop up camper, the Aliner sets up in 30 seconds, is lightweight enough to be towed by almost any vehicle and can be easily stored and maintained. Six different Aliner models are available.

For more information, visit aliner.com.

SOURCE: Columbia Northwest press release
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Offline fallsrider

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Re: Columbia Northwest introduces new line of PopUps
« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2011, 09:00:57 PM »
I just read this on another site. This is great news! It's great that someone is expanding their line of small trailers and using some Coleman employees to boot. And who knows what "we were able to take much of what made their campers such an industry-leader for so many years -- quality construction, simple set-up, and a strong dealer network -- and make it part of the Somerset line of camping trailers" means, but it will be interesting to find out.
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Offline Hacksaw

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Re: Columbia Northwest introduces new line of PopUps
« Reply #2 on: September 14, 2011, 09:06:03 PM »
Great news great news!! Can't wait to see em!
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Offline bondo54

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Re: Columbia Northwest introduces new line of PopUps
« Reply #3 on: September 14, 2011, 09:40:47 PM »
If anyone goes to the show please take pictures and post also let us know what lift system they use.
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Offline Travelhoveler

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Re: Columbia Northwest introduces new line of PopUps
« Reply #4 on: September 14, 2011, 09:44:14 PM »
I've seen a number of Aliners, and I know Columbia Northwest is a very competent, high quality manufacturer.  Let's hope the quality of their a-frames is reflected in their canvas pups.
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Offline Tabazooron

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Re: Columbia Northwest introduces new line of PopUps
« Reply #5 on: September 15, 2011, 07:45:00 PM »
It's a strange world we live in....
We've seen so many old line companies close up and younger companies pick up the slack.
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Offline ken in md

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Re: Columbia Northwest introduces new line of PopUps
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2011, 12:21:05 PM »
Happy to see the Somerset factory resurrected - as a Coleman owner I am sorry to see the name go, but happy they will continue making popups.  Might help insure ongoing parts availability for us coleman owners too.

Bravo!

Offline Travelhoveler

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Re: Columbia Northwest introduces new line of PopUps
« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2011, 12:47:49 PM »
Quote
Happy to see the Somerset factory resurrected

I don't think the new campers are being made at Coleman's old factory in Somerset, but rather at the Columbia Northwest plant in Kecksburg in Westmoreland County.  I think the new name just honors the old Somerset factory, and hints that the new campers are similar to those produced there.

I think Blackstreet parted out the old Coleman Somerset plant and sold everything.
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Offline Unstable_Tripod

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Re: Columbia Northwest introduces new line of PopUps
« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2011, 12:55:05 PM »
I think Travelhoveler is correct.  They also hired some of the employees who used to work in Somerset.  So far, Coleman has nothing to do with the situation.  It will me interesting to see if Columbia Northwest ever does a name licensing agreement with Coleman. 
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Offline PopUpSteve

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Columbia Northwest introduces new line of PopUps
« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2011, 06:21:29 PM »
Here a first look at the new Somerset Camping Trailers at the Hershey RV Show. Will post moe details shortly.
Steve
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Offline Unstable_Tripod

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Re: Columbia Northwest introduces new line of PopUps
« Reply #10 on: September 16, 2011, 06:23:59 PM »
They certainly do look like the former Fleetwood/Colemans, don't they?
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Re: Columbia Northwest introduces new line of PopUps
« Reply #11 on: September 17, 2011, 07:41:24 AM »
Buddy of mine is on his way with his family to the Hershey show. I asked him to take some pics of these pups for me.

I am very happy that someone picked up the production of the "Coleman" pups. Looking at the pics above I see they are using what seems to be the same lift system. Would really like to take a look up close of these just out of curiosity!

I am assuming they picked up the patents for the "Coleman" pups??
Gary
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Offline KJcachers

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Re: Columbia Northwest introduces new line of PopUps
« Reply #12 on: September 17, 2011, 09:10:07 AM »
Here a first look at the new Somerset Camping Trailers at the Hershey RV Show. Will post moe details shortly.

sure looks like an E1 to me! Love it!
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Re: Columbia Northwest introduces new line of PopUps
« Reply #13 on: September 17, 2011, 09:52:14 AM »
Not sure about the patents.Coachmen is using the stepper door on the Clippers now and the one piece screen door.
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Offline jeicher

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Re: Columbia Northwest introduces new line of PopUps
« Reply #14 on: September 18, 2011, 10:43:11 AM »
Living close to both CNW and the old Coleman factories and knowing some of the personnel, I am excited to see CNWs new venture (especially since I own an Aliner).  To me the pop-up is a good product fit for CNW especially with Forest River now taking a bite of an already small (A-Frame) market. CNW needs to improve market share and, in general, the pop-up does not compete with the Aliner series since the Aliner is much more of a travel trailer for two people.  The pop-up is more of a family camping trailer that usually stays at the campground for many days (Of course there are exceptions. I encountered a family of four that had a modified Alite).

CNW did not buy the former Coleman factory although several of the key personnel now work for CNW. The Somerset trailers will be initially be produced at the present Aliner facility, so depending on production volume CNW could quickly run out of manufacturing space. At the Hershey RV show, former Coleman dealers were excited about the new Somerset Trailers, but dont look for them at the dealer showroom until at least spring of 2012.

As far as it being a Coleman trailer, these trailers have not really been a Coleman product since Sheldon Coleman sold the plant to Fleetwood many years ago. Fleetwood and subsequently Blackstreet had total control of the product. Like most Coleman products, except gasoline lanterns and coolers, the products are name only with a royalty being paid to Coleman Inc. In the case of the trailers it cost hundreds of dollars each for just the Coleman name and this money could be better spent directly on the product. It was the dedicated employees, not the Coleman name that made it a good product despite many cost cutting measures made by the bean counter management.

My hope is the new CNW venture will go well and give CNW much better volume buying power and many more dealers. This in turn can also benefit the Aliner product line in many ways.

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