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Old 05-14-2006, 10:31 AM   #1
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1979 31' Excella 500
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What is this middle awning pole for?

I seem to have ripped this off boondocking in the woods. I recovered the bottom part of the pole but am missing one bracket (bottom). Ripped right off the trailer.





I've had the awning up and used the two side poles to support it and was never quite sure what this one was for. If I were to repair it, any suggestions on reattaching that bracket? I don't think I can just screw it back in as I don't think that will be sturdy enough.
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Old 05-14-2006, 10:36 AM   #2
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It is a middle support that helps keep the awning snug by keeping the center of the tube inline with the ends. It is the last piece that I remove before returning the awning to its stored position as it keep it from rolling up when the ends are taken down. Be certain that you always have one end of the awning lower than the other, usually the rear end, so that water will run-off and not collect on the awning.
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Old 05-14-2006, 10:39 AM   #3
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With a 20' or so awning length, it's to support the fabric at the middle. The missing part attaches to the extended awning in some fashion to keep the fabric from sagging and provides a higher support to allow for water runnoff. The missing lower bracket mount was to hold it in its down/unused position.

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Old 05-14-2006, 10:46 AM   #4
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Mi ZipDee manuals sat that pole is optional, but with a really long awning roller, I think the extra support is agood idea. The folks at ZipDee have phenominal customer service. They have given me great advice to try to repair items before they were willing to sell me parts. They have even sent me free parts. All you need is that "L" bracket. Give them a call http://www.zipdeeinc.com/RV%20Produc...Home-Page.html. On newer Airstreams, I've noticed they mount the bracket much lower, closer to the wheel trim. We always move the picnic table under the awning, very close to the trailer, and the bracket catches me in the back. I think lower down would be a better place to mount it.
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Old 05-14-2006, 12:37 PM   #5
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wac

the part you are missing is a piece of aluminum angle about 1 inch wide by 1 1/2 to 2 inches on each side. it will have 3 holes drilled in it.

call zip dee in chicago, i bet they will send you one for very little money...

a couple of rivits and some sealer and you will be back in business!

john

ps ask them for a set of instructions for your awning too!
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Old 05-14-2006, 01:22 PM   #6
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1979 31' Excella 500
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Going to need some BIG rivets now as the holes have been made a bit larger I could swear the old one was screwed on.
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Old 05-14-2006, 01:57 PM   #7
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Also it seems to me that when I had the awning out and supported by the side brackets, the steel holes that would be used in the awning to stick the pointed end of this middle support into where not yet exposed. It seemed like I had to roll the awning way down into an un-natural spot in order to put the pointed end of this middle support into where it seemed it belonged.
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Old 05-14-2006, 02:21 PM   #8
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Decoration?!

Wac -

I also have that similar pole and find it tough to get into place on my awning. Then when it IS in place, it won't hold appropriately at all. In fact, with the slightest movement in the roller tube - CRACK!!!!!!! - it SLAMS into the side of the trailer. Self retraction!

I guess I need to get with ZipDee and see about new 'spring' for the center pole at the roller tube end, because as it is now I don't/ won't use it.

Guess that is a possible liability with my LONG roller tube. Thanks for that reminder!

Axel
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Old 05-14-2006, 02:28 PM   #9
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Axel ~

Can you post a picture of what yours looks like? Maybe that will help others including Wacnstac understand its function.

Brad
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Old 05-15-2006, 09:41 AM   #10
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That middle awning support is also a slicer. I raised my side poles on the awning forgetting about the middle support arm which was in place. As the awning went up higher, the support post slipped out of its hole in the roller and flew back towards the trailer. The pin at the end hit Patty's nice canvas chair and sliced right through the seat.

Now if I raise the awning higher. I raise one side, then check the middle support to see if it needs to be extended. Then I get the other side.

Jack
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Old 05-15-2006, 09:45 AM   #11
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Just got off the phone with Zip Dee. Very helpful folks. Apparently some of my confusion about what this middle pole is for stems from the fact that I am missing what is called a "roller plate" that is used to stick the pointy end of the center support into. My awning cloth has some grommets in the cloth if you extend the awning WAY down that I though the pointed end of this pole was supposed to go into but apparently this is not the way it is supposed to work. Anyway I have a new L bracket and a roller plate on the way to me for a grand total of about $10.

If anyone has a picture of how this middle support is supposed to be engaged into this center roller plate, (which I am apparently missing) it would be worth a thousand words.
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Old 05-15-2006, 01:29 PM   #12
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1979 31' Excella 500
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Any suggestions on how to refasten the L brackets back to the outside sheet with the stripped out enlarged holes I now have? I've been told that originally these were riveted in, but I don't think a 3/16" rivet will be big enough to do the job. Should I use bigger screws? Some sort of toggle bolt?
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Old 05-15-2006, 01:39 PM   #13
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wac

if it ever quits raining i can get pics of the center arm for you...

as for the bracket i would think oversized stainless screws sealed with vulkem would be the best.

-or-

the bracket might be large enough that you can slightly reposition it to get into virgin material. since the arm is spring loaded moving it up or down a little should not be an issue.

john
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Old 05-15-2006, 02:29 PM   #14
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Yeah I'd really appreciate a picture of just what it looks like where the center arm point goes into the awning.
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