A Visit to Charlie’s Birthplace
When we left Joliet, IL and headed for Columbus, OH, we had scheduled an overnight stop in Elkhart, IN. Our primary reason was to stop in at Tiara RV and get a couple of minor items for Charlie that were not correct when we purchased him. With an afternoon and evening in Elkhart, we decided it was a good opportunity to do something we had not had time to do before purchasing our Heartland Landmark 365, participate in a factory tour at Heartland RVs. We felt it was only fitting for us to visit the place where Charlie was born! Betsy contacted Heartland RV and signed us up for a tour at 3:00 pm. Tours are held daily and only require a call or online signup to attend. There are multiple Heartland factories, so we requested a tour of their “luxury” fifth wheel factory. This factory manufactures three brands of Heartland fifth wheels, Big Country, Big Horn and Landmark 365.
We arrived for our tour a few minutes before 3:00 and were joined in the lobby by another couple who were also full-timers and looking to upgrade their 2011 Keystone Montana. Shortly thereafter, our tour guide, Stewart introduced himself. After some brief introduction, we all drove to the factory. It is always interesting to go into these factories when they are completely empty. All of the workers are gone for the day and the place is quiet, but you can easily imagine the flurry of activity that occurs here when you learn that approximately 65 units are completed every week.
As you would expect, the tour began with the foundation, the frame, axles and wheels. It was interesting to see these units in their most basic form with the tanks and wiring exposed. Although the current run on the assembly line was Big Horns, it was easy to relate what we were seeing to our Charlie. Stewart guided us through the production process and answered any questions we had. As we proceeded through the process it became evident that Charlie had come from a good family tree. Stewart spoke highly of the Landmark 365 line throughout the tour and confirmed our feelings regarding Charlie. At the end of the line we got to tour a couple of completed units. To our surprise, mixed in with all of the Big Horns was a beautiful Landmark 365 with a Madison floor plan. This is Landmark’s front living floor plan and was well appointed.
Overall, it was definitely worth the time to see where Charlie came into existence and get a peak into how he is built from the inside. If you ever have any questions about our Landmark 365 Charleston floor plan, we would be happy to share our thoughts and experiences.