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RV Of The Day: July 23, 2008; Road Champs '90 Winnebago Chieftain
Topic Started: Jul 23 2008, 02:44 PM (623 Views)
Celica Baby
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Today's car of the day is Road Champs 1990 Winnebago Chieftain.

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Winnebago- is there any vehicle that says summer vacation better than this one? The Winnebago featured here is a true 1/64 piece and dwarfs 1/64 cars as it should.

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Wikipedia
 
The company was founded in February 1958 by businessman John K. Hanson in Forest City, which is located in Winnebago County, Iowa. At the time, the town was undergoing an economic downturn, and Hanson and a group of community leaders convinced a California firm, Modernistic Industries, to open a travel trailer factory, in a bid to revive the local economy.

Surviving a rough beginning, the entire operation was purchased by five Midwesterners, with Hanson serving as president. In 1960 the name of the company was changed to Winnebago Industries.

To improve quality, Winnebago Industries manufactured furniture and other components designed specifically for its travel trailers. One such innovation was the "Thermo-Panel," which was a strong, lightweight sidewall that was a characteristic of Winnebago products.

In 1966 the first motor home rolled off the Winnebago Industries assembly lines.[2] These motor homes were sold at a price approximately half of what was being charged for competitorsí models, which led to its ubiquity and popularity in the RV community. The brand name has become synonymous with "motor home" and is commonly used as a generic term for such vehicles, whether they were produced by the company or not. This phenomenon, the genericized trademark, has occurred with well-known brand names for other products, such as Kleenex (facial tissue), Tylenol (acetaminophen pain reliever) and Xerox (photocopiers).

Through the 70s and into the 80s model names were influenced by the Native American tribe of the same name and included the Brave, Chief Black Hawk, the Indian, the Chieftan, and the Warrior.

Older Winnebago RVs are often recognizable by the painted "w" (also called the "flying W") on the side of the vehicle, with a stripe that connects the front and back of the camper.

In 1973, the company introduced a new model, the Minnie Winnie, built on the Dodge B-series van chassis. It was about 19-1/2 feet (5.9 m) long (despite the name, longer than the shortest contemporary Brave model). Longer models were added through the years. This model continued (using Chevrolet or Ford chassis after 1980) until the name was retired after the 2006 model year, when at 30 feet (9.1 m), it wasn't exactly "minnie" anymore.

As gas prices went up over time, the company made smaller models available, such as the "Winnie Wagon," with a low profile and pop-top. The company also developed a line of smaller units slightly larger than a passenger van built on chasis and engines from Renault and Volkswagen.


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For more information and pictures of the real car please visit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Winnebago_Industries

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Wikipedia
 
Winnebago products have appeared in various works of fiction and music. For example, the 1975 film Escape to Witch Mountain, features a 1974 Minnie Winnie, which is made to fly in a memorable sequence. A spacecraft made from a 1986 Winnebago Chieftain appears in the Mel Brooks spoof Spaceballs. Clay Walker makes reference to a "tie-died Winnebago" in his 2007 release 'Fore She Was Mama. Other examples include the 1980 film The Blues Brothers, National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, MTV's Reality Television series Road Rules, The Venture Bros by Col Gathers, Family Guy, and the title character's (Jack Nicholson) Winnebago Adventurer in About Schmidt.

Effective August 1st, 2008, the Winnebago Industries Charles City, IA manufacturing plant will be closed. About 270 employees will be out of work when production ends. According to a news release from the company, the Charles City, IA manufacturing plant is being closed because of dramatic changes in the market since its opening in 2004.

Winnebago officials credit the declining U.S. economy, higher fuel prices, decreasing consumer confidence and difficulties getting loans have contributed to a decrease in overall motor home demand. Retail sales have declined by double-digit percentages for seven of the last eight months for the industry.

The company laid off more than 200 employees earlier this year, mostly at the main Forest City, IA plant. The company hasn't filled another 100 positions vacated when employees retired or quit.


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†††† ††† If the sun refused to shine, I would still be loving you.
When mountains crumble to the sea, there will still be you and me.
†††† †††††† †††††† †† - Led Zeppelin: "Thank You"


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craftymore
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WOW! I think I just found where my vote is going to this week. :thumbup: The detail on the roof and front end is outstanding. This casting looks [size=7]Huge[/size]! Even the ladder on the back looks like it's diecast too.

Hope everything is ok with Swifty. I noticed he did not post any in the last day here on the Garage. When he hops back online, I hope he can answer some questions like, how big is this casting, how much does it weigh and those sort of questions.

On a side note, Jen you have a cool avator. :P
Greenlight, Auto World or M2, please make a '64 Imperial Crown Coupe/Sedan in 1/64.

Thanks. :wave:
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Supraman
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Swifty's @Work Alter Ego
I had a massive thunderstorm hit last night (took out my power). So I got online earlier and sent Jennifer the pics so she could put up the COTD. But I'm still functional!

The casting is quite big, but not overly heavy.

Thank you very much for getting this posted, Jennifer! Looks good!
This is Swifty. If I'm on this account I'm either at work or otherwise away from home. This account has presently been accessed from 8 states: PA, NJ, NC, KY, IN, CT, MA, & VA.

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Posted Image If I go crazy then will you still call me Supraman?
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Celica Baby
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Can you see what I'm saying?
craftymore
Jul 23 2008, 01:06 PM
On a side note, Jen you have a cool avator. :P

Thank You! FMA (Fullmetal Alchemist) is my favorite Anime!


Supraman
Jul 23 2008, 02:05 PM
Thank you very much for getting this posted, Jennifer!  Looks good!

Always happy to help!

This is an awesome COTD and your pictures look amazing Swifty! :thumbup:
††††† Posted Image

†††† ††† If the sun refused to shine, I would still be loving you.
When mountains crumble to the sea, there will still be you and me.
†††† †††††† †††††† †† - Led Zeppelin: "Thank You"


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craftymore
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Glad to see your doing fine Swifty. Great picks thus far for CoTD. :thumbup:
Greenlight, Auto World or M2, please make a '64 Imperial Crown Coupe/Sedan in 1/64.

Thanks. :wave:
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JustDavid
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SUV
wow!!!!!!!!!!!!

I love-love-love this casting! I have the one with the blue/pink stripes.
Great pick!
:cat: I'm Tator-Zilla and I love toy cars too...they taste like chicken.
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ivantt
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New casting? Quick! Take it apart!
Just think, Swifty, the snowstorms and ice will soon be upon you!!! :D :D
I used to be a genius, but I found out it's a lot less work and more fun to be a redneck.
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Swifty
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We built this city on rock and roll
craftymore
Jul 23 2008, 04:06 PM
Hope everything is ok with Swifty. I noticed he did not post any in the last day here on the Garage. When he hops back online, I hope he can answer some questions like, how big is this casting, how much does it weigh and those sort of questions.

Ask and you shall receive! Here are a few pictures with today's car of the day.

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The ladder is plastic, as you can see in this last picture it is much shinier than the metal baseplate.
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james_autos
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Minivan
Another great model! I'm enjoying this week's selection :P
Vorsprung durch tecknik.
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craftymore
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Thanks for the comparo shots with the JL Chevelle Swifty. :P The RV really does appear to be a true 1/64. they did a good job with the ladder cause it fooled me.
Greenlight, Auto World or M2, please make a '64 Imperial Crown Coupe/Sedan in 1/64.

Thanks. :wave:
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NUTHOUSE
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Station Wagon
I had this one as a child and lovingly destroyed it. Too bad it is one of the best RV castings out there.
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