We took a bit of an unplanned detour through Red Bay after Chad realized how close Tupelo was to the Tiffin (Allegro) motorhome factory. We got up “early” and drove about an hour to get to the plant on time. After a super-quick unhitching of the car in the middle of very small and full parking lot, Chad was able to maneuver the motorhome into a parking space (it was very kind of Tiffin to let a Winnebago occupy a spot at their Tiffin factory!).
This is a picture of a 1976 Allegro (they opened in 1973). It’s classic 70s inside: harvest gold shag carpet, avocado green chairs, wallpaper AND paneling! Throw some Cher or ABBA in the
CD player casette player 8-track player, get it to Route 66, and you’d have the makin’s of one rad road trip.
OK, enough of the 70s.
We started the tour off in the carpentry shop. LOTS going on in here. All of their cabinets and wood accent pieces are made from scratch here.
Next, on to the chassis. Tiffin basically builds them from scratch, adds some Michelin tires and a Cummins engine, and voila! The skeleton of an RV:
These are the walls and ceiling—windows and other openings are cut out of foam with a c & c router:
This was really an up-close tour. Long, too! It lasted almost 2 hours. The lunch whistle blows at 11:20, when there is a mass exodus of employees hitting the Piggly-Wiggly deli (where we ate, at 11:45) or the Jack’s hamburger place.
Each RV has 2-3 miles of electric wire in it—??!
After the tour and lunch, Chad was pleased to have an hour speaking with Bob Tiffin, the founder and owner. Chad had called the day before and asked if he could have an hour of Bob’s time to interview him for The Everyday Innovator, Chad’s latest web venture. I’ll link here to Chad’s post about when he finishes it.
We found a place we could park the RV for a bit (the Tiffin service center) while Chad bought a few parts at their RV store, and Sweet Pea had her Skype piano lesson! Thank you Mrs. Jessica for being willing to do this with us!
Then it was on to McFarland Park, in Florence, Alabama, next to the Tennessee River!
Can you find us?
A tranquil and lovely end to a long and splendid day!