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Old 07-27-2007, 11:48 AM   #1
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zip dee main arm jammed

I was setting up my awning and one of the main arms jambed part way up. I had to take off the trailer end of it to get enough pressure to get it to close back up. I had to bang the end on a 2X6 on the ground.It would have been a real pain to have to take it all apart to get home. Is this a common problem?Sorry for not searching, I'm boondocking at the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival and don't have the fastest connection in the world.
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Old 07-27-2007, 11:57 AM   #2
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Zip Dee arms

I recently had the same problem. I took the arms off where they mount to the motorhome body - be sure that the awninig is secured in the retracted position. I then fully extracted the inner bar from the outer slide portion of the arm. Medium steel wool cleaned off the accumulated gunk from the insert arm piece. A liberal application of WD40 sprayed inside the tube and on the outside of the slide arm solved my problem. Everything now works smoothly without a lot of effort - as it should be. Be sure to lubricate the spring loaded catches on the arme too.
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Old 07-27-2007, 12:03 PM   #3
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I would recommend using silicone spray instead of WC-40. I think it won't evaporate as quickly and it won't collect the dirt that caused the problem JKW mentioned.
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Old 07-27-2007, 01:24 PM   #4
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Had the same problem with my new trailer. Once I got the awning open all the way I found burrs at several of the drilled out stop holes. I sanded the burrs away and have had no problems since.
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Old 07-27-2007, 01:45 PM   #5
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When I this problem I found that the main arm had a slight bend. Make sure the arm is straight.
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Old 07-27-2007, 04:46 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JKWoodrow
I recently had the same problem. I took the arms off where they mount to the motorhome body - be sure that the awninig is secured in the retracted position. I then fully extracted the inner bar from the outer slide portion of the arm. Medium steel wool cleaned off the accumulated gunk from the insert arm piece. A liberal application of WD40 sprayed inside the tube and on the outside of the slide arm solved my problem. Everything now works smoothly without a lot of effort - as it should be. Be sure to lubricate the spring loaded catches on the arme too.
Lubricate all the moving parts and/or sliding parts of any Zip Dee awning, with silicone spray.

Do that PM once a year.

WD-40 has a petroleum base and will not last. It's ok in an emergency, "only."

Andy
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Old 07-28-2007, 11:32 AM   #7
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I bought my ZipDee "used" - that is, it came with my new-to-me trailer. I found the parts to be very hard to slide. So I took the arms apart and saw that they were all crudded up on the inside. I think my po had just sprayed the parts with silicone or wd-40 and that was it.

I took the parts apart, then cleaned them with wd-40. By cleaning, I mean spraying the parts liberally then wiping off all the gunk. Everything works slick as sn** now.

Pat
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Old 07-30-2007, 09:20 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by azflycaster
When I this problem I found that the main arm had a slight bend. Make sure the arm is straight.
I've now had this problem twice as a result of forgetting to lower the awning before leaving the camp site and experiencing a heavy thunderstorm!

Actually, the first time was in the drive way at home. The second was away at a camp site. Lesson learn? Hopefully! I bought a spare to have on hand in case it happens again.
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Old 08-02-2007, 06:23 AM   #9
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A couple weeks ago when I opened my awning for the first time since buying the used MoHo, one arm was frozen. I had to unbolt the arm from the bottom and I extended it with a cut off section of tent pole.

The main problem I believe is the chemical reaction between the Stainless tube inserted into the Aluminum tube, the crud on the arm that seperated looks like a build up of corosion. We use a product called MollyDag when we put Stainless screws into Aluminum chambers. Without its use the screws will gall up and will be hard to remove if installed for a long time, often the threads will bond to the screws and the hole will be stripped out.

Mine is still frozen, I tried silicone spray, heat, two people pulling, etc.
I guess I'll have to remove the arm, get out a couple of chains, and use the truck and a tree ....

Regards,
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Old 08-02-2007, 09:14 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by ajheinonen
I guess I'll have to remove the arm, get out a couple of chains, and use the truck and a tree ....

Regards,
It may be easier to order a new arm from Zip-Dee. They aren't exactly cheap, but you may do other damage to the arm with the chain and truck method and have to replace it anyway.
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Old 08-02-2007, 11:48 AM   #11
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I took the arm off my Safari and was able to get the two pieces apart. I found that the inner arm has a slight bend in it, causing it to bind as it slides in the outer arm. I'm going to try straightening it this weekend. If that doesn't work I'll buy a new one. I think it is interesting that the inner arm is solid, not tubular. I guess that makes it easier for them to put the intentional bends in it, but overall probably makes it easier to unintenioinally bend it.
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Old 08-02-2007, 12:10 PM   #12
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When my main arm was bent (my bad) I sent the inner arms back to zip dee to have them straaighten them and bought new outer arms. I paid the postage and zipdee did the bending for no charge.
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Old 08-04-2007, 05:17 PM   #13
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The bend was minor and I was able to straighten it out enough to operate fairly smoothly. I just put it in a vise and slid a piece of pipe over the aluminum and gently worked it back. It all works well now.
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