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Old 05-14-2006, 09:31 AM   #1
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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, 09:36 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, 09:39 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, 09:46 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, 11:37 AM   #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!

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ps ask them for a set of instructions for your awning too!
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Old 05-14-2006, 12:22 PM   #6
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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, 12:57 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, 01:21 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, 01:28 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, 08:41 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, 08:45 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, 12:29 PM   #12
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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, 12:39 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, 01:29 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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Old 05-15-2006, 03:46 PM   #15
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i'll get to it this week...

just need a break in the rain! don't want to roll the awning up wet ya know!

john
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Old 05-22-2006, 01:47 PM   #16
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"Roller plate" - What is it?

Hello Wac et al -

Sorry, the digital is down again! When the electrons allign and the planetary gravity fields return to previous levels, I'll take and post photos.

What is the Roller Plate you spoke of and that ZD is sending you? Is this in essence a 'plate' you add to the roller tube where the center support goes into the tube?

I'll have to look but I seem to recall (not good to rely on memory here!) that there is a small plate in my roller tube where in the CC pin is supposed to go. We are having 40+ MPH wind Gusts right now so the awning will stay rolled up. I'll look tomorrow and report back.

Axel
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Old 05-22-2006, 02:20 PM   #17
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Not entirely on the subject, but what I find interesting is that the 25' Classics (newer Airstreams) have the center support rod, yet the 25' other models don't. Length of awning seems the same and not that I think there is a problem without one on the 25', just found it interesting.

I guess I shouldn't cause when I worked with the factory and a dealer when I spec'd out our current Safari, they both questioned my request for the 15k BTU A/C unit with the Comfort Control System on my 25' Safari, but did it for an upcharge. I recall asking what was so magical about the 25' Classic that the 15k BTU A/C unit was an option for that, but not on the 25' C Safari? There was no real answer to be had, except, "well that's a Classic".....even though it was the same size RV......

Anyway the answer I belive to your question is that it helps support the awning. If you had one, I'd replace what you need to get it back since without it, you'll have either a broken exposed piece or holes from the screws they sunk into the side to mount it. Replacing it will most likely be the best option so it looks as though it never happened.
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Old 05-23-2006, 02:16 PM   #18
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So nobody really answered my question why on my roller bracket the middle hole is so small. Is this intended to be drilled out to size by the user to match the pointed end of the center support pole?
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Old 05-23-2006, 03:00 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SilverToy
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!

Axel
Tell me about it - I have several little "beauty marks" on the side of my trailer where this has happened, some by me, some by the PO. It seems like it has to sort of ratchet into place, but "just so". Seems like the way it's worked best is to have the awning at the height you want it, then insert the pole and apply tension to the pole until it clicks into place.

wacnstac - with the awning fully unrolled, you'll see the bracket/hole plate where it should be, and the diameter of the hole should be consistent with the size of the pin on the end of the pole. You shouldn't have to drill out anything - unless for some reason your inner pole isn't original to the awning. Initially yes, this is an odd and far from optimal angle for the awning. It isn't until you extend the end poles out to create the optimum height/angle that you'll want to extend and insert the center pole - which also serves to keep the door from dragging on the awning fabric. If you make sure that this pole is the last piece to go up and the first to come down, you should have few problems going forward. I would recommend to anyone that applying a strip of foam tape to the end or maybe some kind of small, rubber bumper might help alleviate some dents and cuts to property and person. I'd imagine that upper pole swinging down could seriously hurt someone - it sure has left some dings on the side of the trailer.
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Old 05-23-2006, 03:38 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coriolis1
If you make sure that this pole is the last piece to go up and the first to come down, you should have few problems going forward.
Just an addendum to the above advice which I agree with 100%.

If after you place that center pole, you decide to raise the awning even higher, raise one side pole, then go back to the center pole and make sure it is tight. If you don't do this, there is the possibility that when you raise the other side pole, the center pole will fall out and against the trailer. After the second side is raised, again check the center pole. Remember that wind can raise an awing slightly and if that center pole has insufficient tension, it will come out and fall back.

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