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Old 01-22-2013, 09:22 AM   #21
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Can't wait for the self-driving car, that'll be fun. Maybe stay home and "sense" a virtual road trip on all the new electronics would be even better.

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Old 01-22-2013, 10:39 AM   #22
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Just last week I saw a used motorized end for a ZipDee (it said it was off of a Prevost?)... EBay's opening bid...
$950
The Zip-Dee awnings that are used on Prevost conversions are a totally different type. The have lateral arms that fold into a box, along with the lead rail. The fabric and roller stay attached to the coach and stay in the box.....sort of a backwards system, but having lateral arms there are no vertical arms or supports extending along the side wall of the coach. these awnings are also 120VAC operation only. They are also very slick looking, but over $6000 plus installation.

This new Zip-Dee is a variation of a very similar unit that they discontinued several years ago that worked on air pressure to extend and retract. Many were in constant need of adjustment and tweaking, pr to have the pneumatic arms re-built.

I honestly don't see this design, which is quite similar with the exception of the 12VDC motor in the roller tube, along with the tilt motors in the arms, being that different. Should be a real can of worms to work on, plus, it is dead slow when compared to other electric type patio awnings.

Sorry Zip-Dee.........I just don't see this as a competitive product in this market segment.

PS: Never, NEVER trust a wind sensor!!! I can't count the number of drastic situations where wind sensors have failed to register gusts that have bent arms, ripped fabric or placed the awning on RV roofs needing cut-off wheels to remove the mangled metal. Not to mention the damage to the coach itself.
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Old 01-22-2013, 10:50 AM   #23
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Seems like this 12 volt powered awning is like a 12 volt powered hand cart for golfing.

Kinda like something about a female boar hog…

;-)
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Old 01-22-2013, 04:36 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by dkottum View Post
Can't wait for the self-driving car, that'll be fun. Maybe stay home and "sense" a virtual road trip on all the new electronics would be even better.

doug k
The folks at Google Earth already have a self-driving car. Last I heard, it only is allowed to operate in the state of Nevada…

Anyway, more on the topic at hand, if you're not fanatical about using a Zip-Dee, late-model Airstream Interstates use a Fiamma model F65 12v electric awning, with a hand crank backup system in case of a power outage. It's 13 feet in length, and extends out 8 feet at full entension. You can either run the support legs at an angle back to clips on the side of the RV, or put them straight down and peg them into the ground so there's no angled piece of metal to bang your head on when you're not paying attention.

No idea what they cost when ordered separately, or how the price compares to an electric Zip-Dee.
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Old 01-23-2013, 11:50 AM   #25
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Okie Dokie -- we aren't going to be getting this anytime soon! To retrofit our current ZipDee awning on a 21" Airstream was almost $3800 and a new system was over $5k! Now that we (finally) have the hang of opening/closing it, we'll just be going "old school" for the awning!
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Old 01-23-2013, 12:52 PM   #26
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I figure when I'm too old or too feeble to open the awning, that's a message that it's time to take my key ring and throw it into the woods like I always threatened to do when I retired from trucking. Sal
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Old 04-03-2013, 05:10 PM   #27
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I spent a little time trying to find out the price for the retrofit kit and couldn't. You have to e-mail ZipDee for a price, but it appears Suzzee already got a quote. Much too much. I tried OutofDoors Mart and their website is awful; the search function doesn't give any info. I should have tired another vendor, but decided this is not worth it.

We don't use ours very much and always forget how to do it and find the awning to be clunky to operate. My wife looks at the video several times a year and we stumble through it.

I don't know why people say ZipDee is such a good product since it is hard to use and very vulnerable to wind.

Gene
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Old 04-03-2013, 06:36 PM   #28
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We find out Zip Dee awning quite easy to operate. There is a sequence of events to follow in deploying it and putting it away, but if you seldom use it, you probably won't retain it.

By the way, all awnings, no matter the brand are somewhat vulnerable to wind.
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Old 04-03-2013, 10:57 PM   #29
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We had a power awning on our SOB and found it to be a delight...especially nice when I was away from the TT and the wind came up on DE. Iit was factored in to the options price of the TT, but at now where the ZD price.
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Old 04-03-2013, 11:17 PM   #30
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We use the awning a lot and have a simple routine. It goes up and down with little effort. Don't see power as an improvement, just a big motor home gadget of the type that I wish Airstream would avoid. In a league with the external television compartment.

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Old 04-04-2013, 12:23 AM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gene View Post
I don't know why people say ZipDee is such a good product since it is hard to use and very vulnerable to wind.

Gene
Quote:
Originally Posted by TBRich View Post
We find out Zip Dee awning quite easy to operate. There is a sequence of events to follow in deploying it and putting it away, but if you seldom use it, you probably won't retain it.

By the way, all awnings, no matter the brand are somewhat vulnerable to wind.
Hi, I also find that my awning doesn't like the wind, so most of the time it is put away. I don't think any awning likes the wind. I don't have too hard of a time opening and closing my awning, but I did find [from a video] that extending the arms by pushing on the roller tube made it much easier and less likely for the arms to pinch your fingers. They do make, and sell lever/handles that help, but I like pushing on the roller better.
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Old 04-04-2013, 08:09 AM   #32
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ZipDee informed me a basic "relax" kit cost $3,236. That would be list price, so someone may discount it.

If we used the awning more, I suppose it would get easier. I think by now someone could come up with a better design for it. To reduce wind problems, some holes in it would help, but then you have a rain on someone's head.

In the mountains, wind is likely to come up a dawn and dusk, or when thunderstorms, wet or dry, come by. That is a lot of the time. So putting it up for a few hours seems like a waste of time. Even if we leave for only an hour, then it makes sense to put it up and leave it there.

Gene
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Old 04-04-2013, 08:27 AM   #33
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I'd always consigned the "Electric Awning" to the same "not really needed" pigeon hole as an electric drill to lower and raise the stabilisers; until I saw a guy using one of these delightful things on his motorhome. Realising that they cost way too much for what they are, I won't weaken, but it was certainly impressive watching him deploy it from his passenger seat!
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Old 04-04-2013, 08:23 PM   #34
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We have a trailer at work for use in remote areas, it has a power awning. It is very handy in cases whee the wind kicks up...in our case it's usually the arrival of the helicopter...

I'd add the capability to the Airstream if the price was right...I really can't see much more than a $25 gear motor and a couple of gas struts.
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Old 04-05-2013, 08:59 AM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gene View Post
I spent a little time trying to find out the price for the retrofit kit and couldn't. You have to e-mail ZipDee for a price, but it appears Suzzee already got a quote. Much too much. I tried OutofDoors Mart and their website is awful; the search function doesn't give any info. I should have tired another vendor, but decided this is not worth it.

We don't use ours very much and always forget how to do it and find the awning to be clunky to operate. My wife looks at the video several times a year and we stumble through it.

I don't know why people say ZipDee is such a good product since it is hard to use and very vulnerable to wind.

Gene
Gene.

Zip Dee has been at the very top of the list for "customer satisfaction", for at least 15 years or more.

Are they perfect? No.

But I don't know any company that's perfect.

Zip Dee also uses the very best fabrics on the market.

Their awning is not any harder to use than any other brand. In fact, in some cases, it's easier.

The elctric awning, at this point, is something brand new.

It will take a while for some of their venders to get to know that product.

You know, the old "learning curve".

But, once again, to each his own choices.

Andy
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Old 04-05-2013, 10:12 AM   #36
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I see the power awnings on the big rigs and just look at them as something else to go wrong. For me the simpler the better. I open the awning frequently on bright days and enjoy the shade it provides. We're very sensitive to the wind issue and avoid leaving it up when we leave. Even for short times. I avoid using the AC except in the extremes so it helps a lot with keeping the inside cooler. So for me, I'll stick with the ZD awnings and deal with the open / closing routine.

That's my story and I'm stickin to it.
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Old 04-05-2013, 10:57 AM   #37
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I see the power awnings on the big rigs and just look at them as something else to go wrong. For me the simpler the better. I open the awning frequently on bright days and enjoy the shade it provides. We're very sensitive to the wind issue and avoid leaving it up when we leave. Even for short times. I avoid using the AC except in the extremes so it helps a lot with keeping the inside cooler. So for me, I'll stick with the ZD awnings and deal with the open / closing routine.

That's my story and I'm stickin to it.
Things to go wrong?

Why buy a car?
Why buy a truack?
Why buy an Airstream?
Etc, etc, etc.

Life is full of the "something else".

That's why most folks, "enjoy life".

Soooooooo, a problem comes up every so often.

That's why many of us have tools, and..........an insurance company.

Like they said to the man in the electric chair. "More power to you".

Andy
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Old 04-05-2013, 12:54 PM   #38
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Gene.

Zip Dee has been at the very top of the list for "customer satisfaction", for at least 15 years or more.

Andy
Not with everyone as you can see from various awning threads. If they are simpler or equal to other awnings, I cannot say.

And, the brackets on the side of the trailers are prone to water leaks into the trailer—this is not ZipDee's problem, but Airstream does not provide gaskets or proper sealing leading to floor problems.

Gene
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Old 04-05-2013, 01:33 PM   #39
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The full length Zipdee awning on my 31ft is not fun to deal with. The smaller ones maybe easier but this one is a bit of a pain. About half the time the locking clamps don't line up and you have to fiddle with it. It takes a stool to get up there and lock and unlock those clamps. They are not easy to deal with by hand and I can't see using the L-shaped stick would work. It takes about 3 iterations to get the arms fully extended and then you have to deal with that center one. I would say it takes 10-15 mins to put up or take down. I don't remember the awning on my old 5th wheel taking any effort at all to set up. Changing the brand of awning might be easier than making a Zipdee automatic.

Perry
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Old 04-05-2013, 02:40 PM   #40
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Not with everyone as you can see from various awning threads. If they are simpler or equal to other awnings, I cannot say.

And, the brackets on the side of the trailers are prone to water leaks into the trailer—this is not ZipDee's problem, but Airstream does not provide gaskets or proper sealing leading to floor problems.

Gene
The put a gasket under the brackets on 2012 models, plus sealant where the mounting screws and rivets go into the shell, plus sealant on the top of the mounting pop rivets.

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