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Author Topic: Cracked Frame on 2012 Coachmen Freedom Express with Lippert Frame  (Read 342 times)


  • Posts: 2
We bought a 2012 Coachmen Freedom Express 230BH new from General RV in 2012.  It has about 6,000 MI on it.

Shortly after getting it we had it back in for some warranty work and there was an "underbody frame piece broken" according to their service department that they said they would fix the next time it was in. My fault for not getting it fixed right away but General didn't make it sound that important.

In 2015 I had a flat on the highway which turned into two flats which turned into discovering that the rear axle was bent.  The tires had been worn severely unevenly and the tread was starting to separate.  I had all four main and the spare tire replaced to the tune of just over $500.   The axle cost me another thousand to replace.  The trailer shop that replaced the axle said I must have hit something hard to bend the axle.  I've gone over typical Michigan pot holes, but nothing big enough to jar it so much as to bend the axle.

This is on a Lippert frame and had Lippert axles on it.  The replacement axle is a Dexter.

Fast forward to this year and I just found several cracks on both sides of the frame directly above the axles (see pictures).  When the rear axle was replaced the trailer shop welded the broken support piece on the frame as noted above. The dealer had not fixed this.  Additionally, when we first got this trailer, we found a small crack on the inside cupboard that is right above the rear axle.  This crack was initially about an inch and we thought it was cosmetic so didn't worry about it.  Now, it has grown considerably and is in two more spots on the same cupboard.  See below pictures.

I've contacted Coachman and sent them pictures but haven't heard back. I'm also waiting on an estimate from a local welding shop to see about fixing the frame, if that's even possible. The trailer shop that replaced the axle said to get it fixed and get rid of it as he felt there was something major wrong with the frame itself.  They are not an RV dealer, just a trailer shop and this was beyond his expertise level.

In the end I'm probably screwed on this and will end up eating who knows how much money to get this fixed and offload the trailer.

I also have a Swagman four place bike rack hanging off the back bumper (see picture). Total weight is under 200 pounds, and the bumper itself is still square and the welds are still good on it.   Could this be the cause of the frame being compromised? I doubt it with this little bit of weight but I'm certainly not an expert.

So my questions are, has anybody encountered a situation like this, and what seems to be the cause?  Could it be the bike rack?  Is the frame even repairable?


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  • Posts: 233
Re: Cracked Frame on 2012 Coachmen Freedom Express with Lippert Frame
« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2017, 04:22:47 PM »
Looks to me that the trailer has been towed way overweight, welding the cracks is in order and if you do not operate over weight you will probably be ok in the future. With that said I have way more confidence in the trailer people over an RV dealer any day.

John & Connie Neal
2006 Dodge 2500 5.9, PacBrake
Smarty Jr Tuned
2006 KZ 29.5' Durango
MaxBrake, Brake Controller
Pressure Pro TPMS


  • Posts: 2
Re: Cracked Frame on 2012 Coachmen Freedom Express with Lippert Frame
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2017, 05:57:11 PM »
Specs say max 2770 lbs of cargo. I haven't weighed it but have been camping for 12 years and am sure we haven't overloaded it. I get what you're saying though.