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Old 06-11-2015, 10:06 PM   #21
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1994 30' Excella
Mississauga , Ontario
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,015
As said before, it happens when you park the claw on the wrong part of the post before putting the awning away. Then when you roll up the awning it gets trapped and the force of those long arms snap it. I know, I have done it. When ZipDee explained how it happened it was obvious. And for those who say it is a design flaw, be happy that only the claw breaks. If it didn't you would very likely bend the main arm.
Al
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Old 06-12-2015, 08:13 AM   #22
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2007 19' Bambi
Park City , Utah
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I just had to replace my claw. I ordered it from airstreamsupply.com in SLC. It was easy to install. I used a little baling wire to tie the arm to the support while we drove home.
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Old 06-12-2015, 09:14 AM   #23
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2016 27' Flying Cloud
Overland Park , Kansas
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I used zip ties to hold mine in place when my claw broke. I think some guys use zip ties whenever they are traveling, as a precaution that the rafter arm does not come loose and cause damage to the airstream skin, like a bolt coming off.


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Old 06-12-2015, 09:47 AM   #24
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I use those reusable rubber coated twist wires.
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Old 06-15-2015, 07:04 AM   #25
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2013 23' International
foster , Kentucky
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Talking Zip Dee

We had this happen on our last trip. In one of the other threads they had said to always have electric tape (vs. duct tape) because it is waterproof and better in holding all objects ...so we used electrical tape to hold it in place while we traveled home. We called Zip Dee. They were very helpful. My husband also surfed the web ...there were other places that sold you just the claw but it looked like a pain to install ...Zip Dee sent us the whole piece assembled. Took my husband less than a minute to replace. Also, the guy sent us two items (one for each arm of the awning) that prevents this from happening ...those were free ...the Zip Dee was $19,95 and the shipping was $7.95. Personally I am more comfortable with the original company's part. Besides they paid for all the research and patents etc. But that is just me.
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Old 05-28-2016, 10:58 AM   #26
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2015 30' Flying Cloud
Berrien Springs , Michigan
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I have had two break on me. Must be a weak design.
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Old 05-28-2016, 12:01 PM   #27
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2007 23' Safari SE
San Diego , California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigAl View Post
As said before, it happens when you park the claw on the wrong part of the post before putting the awning away. Then when you roll up the awning it gets trapped and the force of those long arms snap it. I know, I have done it. When ZipDee explained how it happened it was obvious. And for those who say it is a design flaw, be happy that only the claw breaks. If it didn't you would very likely bend the main arm.
Al
Right! This can happen when the claw hook is placed on the larger section of the step spacer pin. The claw must be placed on the narrower section!

This can easily happen, even if you have used your awning without incident for years. All it takes is to be distracted, in a hurry, or in poor light conditions.

Additional info: "Broken claw casting on awning"

Below is a photo of my claw hook properly placed on the step spacer pin.
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Old 05-28-2016, 12:18 PM   #28
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2007 23' Safari SE
San Diego , California
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Zip Dee awning parts can easily be replaced... and ordered through Zip Dee.

See their parts page: Zip Dee Parts List

Additional info on Zip Dee: "An All-American Stop: Zip Dee"
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Old 05-28-2016, 12:44 PM   #29
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2019 27' International
2014 25' International
2006 23' Safari SE
Fort Saunders , Wyoming
Join Date: Aug 2007
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I have to agree with Big Al post #21.

Most of these broken claws can be eliminated by:

- Lower the awning when leaving the trailer at its lowest level. A wind can not only break the claw but bend the rod it is attached and the outside rod if fully extended to the fourth, or even the third click.

- If it is not raining, take the awning down for the evening. A rogue wind can do what I stated above. The claw breaks and the rods can actually put a dent into the side of the trailer.

- Drill out the rivet and use a bolt and nut to reinstall. It will not affect the looks of the trailer without the rivet. Who cares? Well, I did not when I was stupid and left the awning out one evening on our first 2006 Safari trip.

- When rolling the awning up after use, make sure that you did disengage the locking mechanism of the bar. This is a bigger cause of breaking a hook. You also do more damage as the awning roller has some momentum in snapping back tight.

- I would say that 90% of damaged hooks and bars are... owner related.

I know. Learned a few lessons that are not in the manual. I bought TWO claw units to the spring section after my experiences in 2006. I have not needed either now for 9 YEARS. I screwed up. No one shows you how to prevent damaging the hook or rods when purchasing. Even the RV salesmen have no clue.

Never had a problem since. When leaving trailer on a sunny day and want to leave the awning extended. Put it at the first click setting, close to the trailer. Wind is less likely to catch it and put excessive pressure on the hook and suspension.

If you have an awning setup 24 hours a day at Lake Mead, Nevada or the Las Vegas, Nevada area with the common 45mph afternoon winds and more... bring tools and extra parts. Your learning curve is going to be very costly, indeed.
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Old 06-03-2016, 10:13 AM   #30
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1985 27' Sovereign
mckinney , Texas
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How to set up and take down your awning

Just thought i would share this video i found on youtube; i think it was very informational. I have not attempted yet, but will definitely have this video running when i get to open my awning.. which need some repair.

How difficult is it to put the Front Rafter Arm Tube? Mine is missing.. not sure what happened to it and i just ordered the part from Zip Dee. I have some RV people who charge $115 an hour and are estimating at least 2 hours as they are not familiar with the ZIP Dee awning parts.... and i am wondering if i can get to DIY it.
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Old 06-03-2016, 10:58 AM   #31
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1976 31' Sovereign
Oswego , Illinois
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Yes you may install very simple job, just google zip-dee there is section how to do things, just don't release back arm from roller as spring is there. If rv stated they did not what or how to do I would run from them, beside aprox. 10 min. or less job not 2 hrs.
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Old 06-06-2016, 01:01 PM   #32
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1985 27' Sovereign
mckinney , Texas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by featherbedder View Post
Yes you may install very simple job, just google zip-dee there is section how to do things, just don't release back arm from roller as spring is there. If rv stated they did not what or how to do I would run from them, beside aprox. 10 min. or less job not 2 hrs.

I did it. It took all but 10 mins.
I actually called zip dee and all I had to do was slide in the arm until it clicks and then hook up claw! Randy at zip dee told me to take that money I was going to pay to get it done and buy me a good meal. Lol
Now I am yet to open the awning.

Thanks!!
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Old 06-06-2016, 01:04 PM   #33
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Berrien Springs , Michigan
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The Zip Dee guy at Alumapalooza gave me a couple of the new replacement post. Quite easy to install (even easier if you have someone extra to take the weight off the pole when removing/replacing the bolt).
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Old 06-06-2016, 02:09 PM   #34
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1999 28' Excella
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We were told that the claws were made to break to prevent worst damage in the wind...like ripping the arms out of the skin.
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