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Old 05-04-2016, 09:01 AM   #1
Tampatomgirl
 
1990 34' Excella
Zephyrhills , Florida
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 98
Awning fabric repair

Good morning all!

I recently purchased my first Airstream ('90 Excella 34'), actually, my first camper ever. I have the 22' zip-dee awning. The pull strap was no longer attached, so two of us climbed up on ladders & pulled it put last week. Ahhh. So nice. I was warned to keep one side lowered so rain water wouldn't build up & tear the awning fabric, but I didn't like the way it looked & figured I would remember to lower it before a rain. Well, dah. I knew it was going to rain today but it slipped my mind. I was awakened at 7am by wind & rain and within 5 minutes the center seam had busted and dropped tons of water right on top of a freshly repotted plant. What a mess 😖. (The awning was added in 1999, so I imagine the fabric has degraded a bit over the years even though it looks brand new)

Long story short, i will have to have it repaired at an upholstery shop, but in the meantime I'm looking for advise for a temporary repair to prevent it from ripping further. Ive looked at all the tape & liquid stitch online, but can't seem to determine which is best. Reviews all over the scale from great to poor for the same product. Can anybody tell me what theyve used successfully?
Appreciate any info. Lesson learned!
Michele
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Old 05-04-2016, 09:32 AM   #2
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The fabric seems to last nearly forever - the thread that sews the seams - not so much. Just leave the awning IN until you can have it sewn. Try taking it to a sail maker or boat top maker as opposed to a general purpose upholsterer. They'll have the weather resistant thread.

This is probably a BAD idea for most people. If you are good at hand sewing - and know how a sail maker works - you could hand sew the seam yourself. You'll need thick sailmaker's thread and needles and a "palm" which is in effect a big hard leather gizmo that fits in the palm of your hand and is used like a thimble. and you'll need to know how to do a back stitch - and you'll have two lines of stitching to do for each seam (it's called a flat felled seam - like blue jeans USED to have.)


It'll take a couple of hours.
Your hand will feel like a claw for a week afterwards.
You can do it while the awning is still on the roll.
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Old 05-04-2016, 10:52 AM   #3
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My seams were rotten. I took my fabric off last summer and had an upholstery shop restitch it. I believe they charged me 75 bucks....I wouldn't put any temporary anything on the awning. You likely will just mess up the fabric. I wouldn't use the awning until I could get it resewn.
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Old 05-04-2016, 11:06 AM   #4
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The awnings are really intended as a sun shade. While they can handle some rain, it's generally a good idea not to leave them up overnight or when you are away. They can be destroyed by wind very easily.
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Old 05-05-2016, 07:42 AM   #5
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1990 34' Excella
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Thank you
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Old 05-05-2016, 08:39 AM   #6
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There is a product called Awning Tape that is clear with filament fibers as reinforcement. I have not used it on an awning but have used it on a convertible top. It is not really noticeable and has been on the top for several years. Don't remember exactly where I bought it but am sure I found it online, probably Amazon.
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Old 05-05-2016, 11:38 AM   #7
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If you want to reinforce the awning to prevent additional tearing, you could try the Speedy Stitcher. It has helped us reinforce tents, camping chairs and other things. Some folks use it for sails and leatherwork--just a thought.

Here is a youtube link to a video that might be helpful to show you how it works.

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Old 05-29-2016, 11:59 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pp22 View Post
If you want to reinforce the awning to prevent additional tearing, you could try the Speedy Stitcher. It has helped us reinforce tents, camping chairs and other things. Some folks use it for sails and leatherwork--just a thought.

Here is a youtube link to a video that might be helpful to show you how it works.

The Speedy Stitcher is what I used on the convertible top before sealing it with the awning tape.
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Old 05-29-2016, 01:36 PM   #9
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Speedy Stitcher will work. I used it to repair an awning strap. The awning strap repair fabric was a length of nylon climbing webbing. The process is slow and it would take a long time to do a whole seam. You will need access to both sides of the fabric at the same time. The repair would be very strong.
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