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Old 07-10-2003, 11:30 PM   #1
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Carports and shelters

We're looking into buying a temporary carport/shelter for the Caravel, which is currently parked next to the garage. We want to keep it dry and protected during the winter, but mostly we want to be able to hide it. We are both a little concerned that there have been some break-ins in the neighborhood, and if anyone is watching the house, the trailer being gone would be a dead give-away that we are gone for a few days.

So has anyone actually used any of the do-it-yourself type carports, RV Covers, etc? I'm looking at the kinds that have metal or PVC frames and can be completely enclosed. If anyone can recommend a brand, I'd appreciate it. I've been looking at several, but none are set up for display, there's just brochures, and it's hard to tell which ones are junk.
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Old 07-11-2003, 01:18 AM   #2
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Stephanie ~

Here's a link to a previous thread (w/other links) discussing the covers you are considering. Sounds like it could work for you...

Shari
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Old 07-11-2003, 07:58 AM   #3
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Cover-It Shelters

Hi Stephanie

I bought a 12x20 Cover-It Shelter a few years ago on the recommendation of a friend. It would be adequate to enclose your Caravel without the sides flapping against the aluminum. I am considering buying a second one or a larger unit for my Caravel.

The Cover-Its are quite a bit sturdier than the Costco units. They use a pipe frame that bolts together in about an hour or two. I assembled mine completely (frame, fabric, and anchors) without assistance in about four hours.

The Cover-It easily withstands the heavy (12-14") snows we get here, and they claim it can take wind up to 70 MPH. The most wind we get here is about 40 MPH and I can say that it seems to deal with that readily enough.

Two things to watch out for: (1) the ground anchors must be very tight. Consider carefully your soil and talk to the Cover-It people about the type of anchor that would be best for you. If it comes loose, the entire structure can be eventually damaged as the "foundation" begins to move. You can mount to asphalt or concrete instead of soil if you want.

(2) Be sure you are on level ground. I didn't level the ground beneath my structure sufficiently and as a result the structure began to "spread" as the lower side crept downhill. This caused stress on the door and eventually resulted in the door failing ($100 to replace). The stress also caused some of the sidewall connections to loosen up, which allowed the sides and roof to flap in heavy wind, which resulted in pinholes forming after three years. None of this would have happened if I'd had it properly levelled in the first place. My friend's identical unit, installed on level ground, is still in near-new condition despite being two years older.

My father has a Costco shelter that cost him $175 (versus the $700 I spent). The Costco is adequate as long as it is not expected to survive heavy snow or wind. The framing is very minimal and really not designed to take much abuse. Despite the self-induced problems I've had, I think the Cover-It is a much better choice for something as valuable as your vintage Caravel.

-- RL
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Old 07-11-2003, 10:14 AM   #4
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Thanks both of you. That's just the sort of info I was looking for. Thanks for the link too, Shari. I searched but never seemed to hit on the right word, and of course 'cover' brought up three pages of results full of burner covers, etc :-) The wonders of computers...
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