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Old 09-11-2003, 04:27 PM   #1
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a& E awning problem help

The awning arm attaches to the rail along the bottom of the trailer .It has come loose and will not tighten .Ive tried longer screws ,larger diameter screws 3/8 with no luck. Is there a fix out there someone has had success with?Some kind of anchor,or should I remove the belly pan? ouch! Thanks in advance.

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Old 09-11-2003, 04:49 PM   #2
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1964 26' Overlander
1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre
Anna , Illinois
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a& E awning problem help

Greetings Art!

You are experiencing one of the problems that caused me to switch to a Zip Dee on my Overlander. The A & E awning hadn't been installed properly (sizing was not correct so the arm attachment locations didn't land on a structural member), and the lower attachment hardware kept pulling out. All that actually held the lower arm mounts (at least on my Overlander) was one wood screw of the three used that contacted the edge of the floor.

The solution that worked the longest was when my Dealer's service department fabricated a stainless steel plate that was mounted at floor level in the trailer and was used to attach the hardware with long bolts through the outside wall of the trailer. The stainless steel plate spanned the distance between two interior ribs and was attached to both the floor and the ribs - - fortunately their installation was carefully done as this contraption was removed when the Zip Dee was installed. Quite honestly, given the amount of damage that was done to the banana wraps and lower body as a result of a series of three repair attempts, I wish that I would have just had the awning removed when the arms pulled out the first time.

I hope that your luck with the A & E awning is better than mine was.


Kevin D. Allen
WBCCI (Lifetime Member)/VAC/Free Wheelers #6359
AIR #827
1964 Overlander International/1999 GMC K2500 Suburban (7400 VORTEC/4.11 Differentials)
1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre/1975 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible (8.2 Liter V8/2.70 Final Drive)
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Old 09-11-2003, 05:08 PM   #3
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thanks Kevin I was hoping you wouldnt say that.You described it to a T .I have a rear bath model and it looks like duct work and plumbing will really make this a fun fix.For giggles about how much is a zip dee on a 31 foot trailer installed with a guarantee(ha ha ha )
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Old 09-11-2003, 06:22 PM   #4
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Art ,there are many ways that can you go about fixing this problem one way that i have seen is to just move the arms over enough to drill new holes and still cover the old ones , another method is to use nutserts or rivnuts , the method that was used on Kevins unit sounds more or less like a patch which I would only try as a last ditch effort , my 71 A/S has a Carefree awning which is more or less like an A&E awning and the drilling new holes method was used on mine at some point during the life of A/S and has been very successful ,infact I had no idea mine had been even repaired until I started restoring my awning .I reused the second set of holes and they still are holding tight .One other solution is to use the next larger size screw I believe the screws used on mine were # 8 or # 10 ,You could easily use # 12 inplace of either one .I also replaced all my hardware with stainless steel screws ,bolts and nuts where ever I could .I also made sure to put some sealant into the original set of holes before i put the arms back inplace, I dont the person who did the repair originally thought to do that .The Zip Dee awning is very pricey ,I own both a Zip Dee on my 74 Tradewind and a Carefree on my 71 Tradewind , personally .......and I know others wont agree with this but again this is my personal opinion I feel the Carefree is easier to use and less of a hassle to put up and down,but the Zip Dee does appear to be a better built awning .As far as worth the Extra $$$$$ thats your call !I feel both awning sytems still leave alot to be desired in way of mounting. I hope this helps Tom
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Old 09-11-2003, 07:10 PM   #5
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1990 32' Excella
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Cool Awnings

I purchased a set of zip-dee's from colaw rv salvage in carthage missouri . 750.00 for a 21' patio and a 7' and a 3' window awning with all hardware. These were off of a 2001 that was wrecked being delivered. I did have to go into the wall in my closet on my 1973 31' to Install a substantial cross brace between the ribs because the lower arm bracket in the rear fell 6" short of vertical rib. I made a 6" wide box beam out of aluminum channel and attached it to the ribs on both sides. The top fell on the horizontal brace. Check around there may be a rv salvage yard near you. Of course now that we put curtains in it and the awnings on. We came across a 87 that we could not pass up. so whomever we sell the 73 to will get to enjoy them. Good luck
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