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Old 11-29-2016, 08:42 AM   #1
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Awning Pole possibility

The DW liked the idea of adding some awning poles to allow us to keep the awning out during marginal, windy days instead of constantly having to roll it in and out. There was one major condition however, in that she did NOT want me to drill, cut or otherwise modify our month old trailer to do so. That made me have to exercise the grey matter between my ears a little.

Here is what I come up with.

I bought two of these on Amazon for about 28.00 each. They are tree limb supports that can handle up to 100# and have a rubber lined cup to prevent damage to the tree limb (or awning arm).

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

When they arrived, they looked like they might just work but were just a little too short to reach the awning arms on our main awning.


So I bought a 10' section of Sch 40 PVC 1 1/4" that allowed the poles to slide in just right. Cut the 10' PVC into two 5' sections, added a couple of end caps (for now) and tried them out. The limb support poles come with a square end cap that I am going to try and retrofit at some point.


This is definitely in "alpha" testing right now, and I am sure a few tweaks may be in order, such as drilling a few more holes to allow finer height adjustment (currently every 2") as well as a different solution other than the PVC cap on the bottom. I will also end up bolting/gluing the tree support fiberglass pole inside the PVC. I might even just buy a little longer sections of PVC so that the adjustment arm is less visible and would also help strengthen the whole setup a little more. But so far, they seem to be working ok for now.

Here is are few pics.
Attached Thumbnails
Awning poles.jpg   Awning pole cradle.jpg   Awning Pole Adjuster.jpg  
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Old 11-29-2016, 09:12 AM   #2
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Me pondering awning your solution Excellent!
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Old 11-29-2016, 09:19 AM   #3
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I think
BigjohnD
made something for this purpose. I think he also had them for sale.
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Old 11-29-2016, 09:29 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trashman View Post
I think
BigjohnD
made something for this purpose. I think he also had them for sale.
If it were up to me, I probably would have gone that way. However, the DW prohibited me from drilling new holes in the awning arms to attach the brackets. So under that condition, this was what I came up with.
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Old 11-29-2016, 10:20 AM   #5
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The awning companies recommend/strongly suggest that you support the roller not the arms. When I asked Carefree about tieing down our elec they said "We don't recommend it, but if you do use the roller not the arms".
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Old 11-29-2016, 10:42 AM   #6
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Quote:
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The awning companies recommend/strongly suggest that you support the roller not the arms. When I asked Carefree about tieing down our elec they said "We don't recommend it, but if you do use the roller not the arms".
I was hoping some would chime in on this type of info!

I placed them where they are because this was the approximate spot where those that are buying the brackets/poles offered by OldCoot and BigJohnD were attaching those brackets.

I just went out and tried moving the pole to the roller itself and to my surprise, the roller gently "snaps" into the cradle perfectly. Now I just have to add a few more holes in the awning pole to allow for a little finer adjustment than every two inches. I actually like the way it locks onto the roller better than I did when supporting the arms and now there is absolutely no chance on marring the paint on the arms.

Thanks for the feedback Grumpy!!!!!
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Old 11-29-2016, 11:26 AM   #7
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How do you prevent the awning from rising UP when wind gets underneath. On a couple occasions when I forgot or waited too long to retract the awning, the issue I faced was the whole thing flapping wildly and trying to flip over the top of the TT. It took me holding it down at the end of the rail while the wife hit the switch inside. Like your idea but unless it is staked and secured at the top I think you will still have issues with anything but a light wind.
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Old 11-29-2016, 12:26 PM   #8
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How do you prevent the awning from rising UP when wind gets underneath. On a couple occasions when I forgot or waited too long to retract the awning, the issue I faced was the whole thing flapping wildly and trying to flip over the top of the TT. It took me holding it down at the end of the rail while the wife hit the switch inside. Like your idea but unless it is staked and secured at the top I think you will still have issues with anything but a light wind.
I have seen a number of ways that people tie down their awnings including but not limited to, ratchet straps, bungee cords, sun shades, and just plain rope which is secured to a dog stake or other ground anchor. I already have been experimenting with ratchet straps looped around the roller, staked down using a dog stake, and snugged up so as to not pull on the awning roller, but prevent any real upward movement. The poles are step 2 to allow me to also prevent downward movement and be able to secure the roller just a little bit more to make everything as rigid as possible. Step 3 is adding the sun shade to help keep the trailer cooler with it facing west.

With that said, I do see a lot of people leaving their power awnings tied down and extended when they really shouldn't and I don't plan on being one of them. I still plan on using some common sense in not leaving it tied down if we are not here, overnight, or when higher winds or storms are forecast, but right now, this Dometic 9100 awning on our new trailer is utterly useless if there is anything over a 5 mph wind where it starts moving about and making all kinds of racket. I get that power awnings are meant to be more "convenient" than manual awnings are, but if they can't be left out in anything over a 5 mph wind, what's the point? For the extra 5 minutes or so of setup and a few dollars more to be able to leave our awning out during days that might be a little more "breezy", I think this effort is worth it.

I also can't wait to get to our other campground spot, where we have some tree cover and winds are mitigated quite a bit where these efforts might not be needed.
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Old 11-29-2016, 12:50 PM   #9
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I agree. I prefer the manual awnings. Not looking forward to electric.
I always had good luck with wind straps on each end of tube. Connected with dog stake and a decent spring for a little give.
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Old 11-29-2016, 04:02 PM   #10
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One thing to watch for is self-dump. Not sure if your Dometic does this, but our Carefree dumps rainwater by bending in and kneeling in the middle. With the awning tied and or supported, this may not happen, which can cause the fabric to tear.


I regularly keep our awning out in full day rains (not windy storms) to get extra dry space, but the dump will trigger from time to time during the day (don't be standing nearby when it goes).
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Old 11-29-2016, 04:37 PM   #11
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One thing to watch for is self-dump. Not sure if your Dometic does this, but our Carefree dumps rainwater by bending in and kneeling in the middle. With the awning tied and or supported, this may not happen, which can cause the fabric to tear.


I regularly keep our awning out in full day rains (not windy storms) to get extra dry space, but the dump will trigger from time to time during the day (don't be standing nearby when it goes).
Thanks for the feedback. Although I plan to have it tied down quite a bit (at least here in Florida), any threat of weather other than a short, light rain would prompt me to take down the poles, straps and sun screen and either have the awning stowed or slightly tilted to allow runoff.

The Dometic has it's own version of a "dump" feature but Dometic does it by having the support arms supported with hydraulic lifts that will allow the awning to "dump" (one or both corners would lower) if enough weight was to build on it. It also has a knob on each support arm where you can manually pull one or both sides of the awning down (collapsing the hydraulics) and lock it in place by tightening the knob. With one corner lower than the other, water has an easy path to runoff.

For me, the poles, straps, and sunscreen are for fair weather conditions only at this point. If the right rainy conditions were to arise, I might test leaving it up in some fashion and watching it CLOSELY!
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Old 02-11-2017, 02:31 PM   #12
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Really nice mod, I'm doing this one for sure


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Old 02-11-2017, 03:33 PM   #13
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That's great! I may order 2. I've just been locking my arms with the screw wheel and tying down with ratchet straps. This would be even better.

Still have to take it all down when winds get to 25 or around there, major pain with the shade cloth and everything. I don't think that can be avoided.

Before I started tying it down winds came up unexpectedly and I thought the awning was going to land on top of the roof. Got it in just in time.
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Old 02-19-2017, 04:42 AM   #14
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Give us an update when you get it all set up. Hoping to do the same. Thanks
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