After unsuccessfully trying in good faith for several months to resolve significant issues with Wayland Long of 2L Custom Trucks, I finally and reluctantly gave up and decided to briefly share my experience with other RVers who are in the market for a large tow vehicle. I am sharing this information as a service to my fellow RVer friends because I want to save them from the problems I experienced.
I don’t have a lot of expertise building large tow vehicles, and I know I’m not alone. Because of that, other RVers who also lack experience in this area must trust sellers of these vehicles to act responsibly and with integrity. When sellers don’t, it creates stress, disappointment, and financial loss. That is what happened to us.
My wife and I recently retired as educators and decided to purchase a large 5th wheel trailer and Freightliner M2-112 to support our new lives as full-time RVers. We committed a significant portion of our retirement savings toward these purchases. We made many good decisions along the way. Buying the Freightliner from Wayland Long was not one of them. Every aspect of the transaction with him was a mess.
In Wayland’s defense, he did two things right. Before I sent a 25% deposit, he was responsive and pleasant. And after the initial delivery and discovering several quality issues, he sent a driver to San Diego to drive the truck back to Poolville, Texas to attempt certain repairs.
When I spend $151,000 for a new vehicle, I have the right to expect the work to be done competently, and I have the right to expect the the seller to exercise proper quality control, be respectful and responsive, and resolve legitimate issues that arise. In my opinion, Wayland Long did none of those things.
As of the writing of this blogpost, my out-of-pocket expenses for making repairs that should have been reimbursed by Wayland Long approach $3,300. Wayland Long refuses to compensate me for any of those expenses. Following is a list of the more significant issues I experienced after the truck was delivered:
- The Tekonsha brake controller Wayland installed failed within miles of leaving the RV dealer. I took the truck to the Freighliner dealer in Cheyenne, Wyoming. The technician documented the fact that the unit had been wired completely wrong. In addition to basic installation mistakes, the technician discovered that Wayland laid bare controller wiring from the front of the truck, over the axle and frame, all the way to the rear of the vehicle. Diagnosing the issue, rewiring the controller, wrapping the wiring, and securing it properly to the frame cost $913. Wayland refuses to reimburse me for this expense.
- Two custom, major electrical cables that Wayland built and installed that ran from the battery box to the engine were not secured properly. They hung loose and drug on the driveshaft, destroying the cables and the driveshaft boot. The cost for the Freightliner dealer to build new custom cables and brackets, install them properly, and replace the driveshaft boot was $960. Wayland refuses to reimburse me for this expense.
- The license plate camera never worked. A radio shop identified the issue – Wayland’s installer wired the reverse wire to the right rear speaker. Wayland’s installer also placed the two rear speakers so they faced below and behind the rear seat, making it all but impossible to hear them. Additionally, the following picture of the bird’s nest of camera wiring under the truck, forward of the rear license plate, tells the story about Wayland’s attention to detail. This is how the truck was delivered to me. I was so frustrated with every aspect of the radio installation that I had the radio shop replace it with a stock AM/FM radio. I did not request reimbursement for this.
- The hitch head was defective. I was able to get the head replaced under warranty, but I had to pay $100 in shipping. Wayland refuses to reimburse me for this expense.
- Three compartment doors on the RV hauler body did not close properly and I had a mechanic modify those doors. The mechanic also removed the aluminum plate on one door and replaced a lock that had fallen apart, purchased and replaced a pneumatic closer that was bent beyond repair at delivery, rerouted wiring under the truck that had been routed around the frame instead of through the holes intended for that purpose, and repaired miscellaneous other issues that were the result of very poor quality control. The cost for labor and parts was $600. Wayland refuses to reimburse me for this expense.
- The truck was delivered with rear seatbelts that were not long enough to allow the seat to retract (repaired by Wayland), missing cabinet keys (eventually mailed to me), a missing body bolt (eventually mailed to me), scratches on the wooden cabinet between the front seats (not repaired), significant chips on the fender (touch-up paint sent by Wayland), missing bed-mounted D-rings that were part of the original order (eventually installed by Wayland), a crack in the dash plastic (discovered after Wayland’s attempt to repair certain items), and cut carpet at one front seatbelt mount that was not sewn up (not repaired).
- I just noticed that one area of the spray-on bed liner on the hauler body is delaminating.
These and other issues indicate both a serious lack of attention to detail and a refusal by Wayland Long to fairly resolve problems that were obvious results of his poor craftsmanship.
I have experienced a lifetime of good business relations. Only two times have I encountered business people who so aggressively refused to make mistakes right. The first (obviously) is this transaction with Wayland Long. The second was perhaps 30 years ago when an unscrupulous general contractor stole $650 from me.
Mistakes happen when things are built. In this case, there were far too many mistakes, and they were the obvious result of just throwing the truck together and getting it out the door without taking time to make sure the job was done right. But those issues could have been resolved to my satisfaction. What is most disappointing is Wayland’s aggressive, angry, and defensive refusal to acknowledge his responsibility, and his refusal to reimburse me after I was forced to fix his mistakes. It would have been so easy for Wayland to do the right thing, but he never did. And according to him, he never will.
Wayland will undoubtedly have a different story. And I know others have had good experiences with him. I understand that. But in my situation, Wayland claims the Freightliner dealers didn’t know what they were talking about. He claims the Freightliner dealers overcharged me. He claims he offered to buy the truck back from me. (True, sort of. After spending almost a year to fix everything that was broken, and after being on the road for a week, he told me to tell him how many miles the truck had on it and how much I’d be willing to sell it for, and he’d consider it. That, obviously, was completely impractical.) But whatever Wayland says, the above issues were the result of his mistakes. Those mistakes had to be repaired. I have receipts. And I have pictures.
I remain convinced that the Freightliner M2-112 is a fine option for pulling large fifth-wheel trailers. However, I would recommend that potential customers exercise great caution when considering doing business with Wayland Long, at least until such time that he decides to conduct business with respect and integrity. There are other options out there. Choosing another option will potentially save buyers from the aggravation I encountered and the unnecessary expenses I incurred.