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                                                                 Jayco Factory Tour


A group of 15 hardy souls, in less than ideal weather conditions ventured to Dandenong to visit the manufacturing site for Jayco caravan and leisure vehicles.


Set on 50 hectares of land and employing over 900 people this operation certainly has a “wow” factor.  It is spread over several large manufacturing hangers and is bustling.


The tour took the group to the sewing and stitching sector (more like a sail loft) where all the fabric components of the full range of Jayco vehicles are assembled.


Then to the vehicle assembly line where 18 Swan camper trailers were in various stages of assembly all on a rail line that makes movement of each trailer easy and efficient.  The same system is in place on each assembly line that we saw.


Then to the “flagship” Jayco Stirling production.  These are the bigger vans, the luxury end of their van range. It was interesting to see how the plumbing and electrical wiring is worked through the interior of the van prior to the fibreglass walls and roof assembly takes place.


The newest addition to the range is the Starcraft range of  vans, and we viewed a line of 22 of these lighter weight aluminium  clad vans in varying degrees of assembly, all expected to be finished and ready for delivery within the next 7 days.


We moved on to see the RV or Motor Home sector where a variety of bodies shapes and sizes are assembled onto Iveco and Mercedes light truck chassis.  Next was the Fifth Wheeler assembling sector.  All big and comfortable vehicles with accompanying price tags.


Also manufactured on site are the cabins and ablution block facilities so common in caravan parks and at some mining sites around Australia.  All designed to be truck transported any where needed in this country.


This is a very big business owned by the Ryan Family who started in a tiny factory in Springvale just 35 years ago and who still own the business today.  The family’s philanthropy is well known in sporting and entertainment circles around Australia.


From this modern plant it is estimated 45 to 48% of all caravans sold in Australia are produced, and sold through a sales dealership of 35 operators, and serviced by a network of about 100 privately owned service centres around Oz.


The two-hour tour was well run and informative and well worth the effort.  We would recommend anyone interested in caravans, Jayco or others, visit this plant given the opportunity.


Written by John Blake