Shade Sail Canopy Project

Canvas Cur

Member
Sep 29, 2016
93
South West Florida
Just starting to "engineer" (LOL) this project. I originally was going with a tarp, but realized that when draped down the top roof sections, the sides would be on the low side with a tarp big enough to go from one side to the other. Researched "waterproof shade sails". Found a 10' triangle with an additional "D" ring in the middle on one side. ( 40 bucks on Etsy). I just finished installing a bracket to hold the middle "D" ring at the top. The other ends on the camper side will be attached with either sturdy bungees or ratchet straps. The top outer point will be supported by a 9' tent pole from Cabela's. It has a neat hand lever to stop the pole at the height you need. A guy rope will be attached to the top pin and run down to a 10" tent stake (or a screw in type for sandy soil). Hoping that it will give just enough protection for the front door area in rainy weather. Won't be as effective as a canopy attached to a pop-up roof, but should help some. The top bracket is an aluminum L bracket for screen porch construction. (See pic). Was a left-over from a previous project and I like it better than bending a washer. and.. it already had holes drilled in it. The top screw and wing nut will grab the "D" ring of the sail at the top and bring up the shade sail with the roof when setting up. Or...at least...that's the plan! Will post pics of the canopy when in place for use.
 

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Canvas Cur

Member
Sep 29, 2016
93
South West Florida
Got my shade sail in, just finished setting up the Aliner to see how it would work in place. At first I had the D-ring turned out but I wanted it more over the top so I put it down and faced it to the opposite side. That puts the shade sail just over the top by an inch or so. The bungees pull the triangle sides down toward the top and seem to hold it in place quite well. They flex a little which might be better if it is breezy out. Could use ratchet straps if it is windy. This size (10X10X10) was just enough to cover the door, which is what I was going for, but 12X12X12 would have been fine too. That would have given me more coverage and protection, but would extend out away from the camper more. Here are a few pics that show it in place. One pole and guy line was all that was needed for this shade sail. My original idea of going with the tarp would require 3 poles and lines thus more setup time. Took about 5 minutes to set this up and the same for breaking down. Will see how it works in the "real world" after our next camping adventure. Not bad for around 75 dollar total investment. Bigger size was only 5 dollars more. When this one is worn out, may go with that. Meanwhile, I think this will give us just the amount of coverage over the door that we wanted.
 

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PopUpSteve

Administrator
Staff member
Gold Supporting Member
Dec 22, 2002
21,099
Southeastern PA
Very nice! You could really extended that to the bottom edge of the roof line. If I may suggest, you may want to have the pole lower then the roof line so that any rain runs off in that direction instead of back to the camper.
 

Canvas Cur

Member
Sep 29, 2016
93
South West Florida
Thanks! Yes, having it extend down to the bottom of the roof may be nice. May have to order the 12' sail to do just that, then perhaps use the 10' to cover the side with the big window. I will watch when I set it up to be sure and have the line of the sail down a few inches from the top edge of the roof. The Cabela pole is so neat, just pull up on the lever, let it drop a few inches, then cinch it back. I also made a "foot" for the pole out of a 3/4" PVC pipe cap. I drilled a hole in the bottom of the cap and that allows me to pound a stake into the ground to prevent the pole from moving around. I also drilled a hole into the plastic cap of the lower pole section to allow water from rain to drain away into the ground. Can't wait till the cooler weather to try it out. Our next camping trip is not until October, so hopefully I will have it figured out by then. It may be down into the mid 80's by then LOL! If I do order the larger sail, I will install it the same way and post a revised pic. Still SO much less invested than the "real" awnings I was seeing for sale!
 

jmkay1

2004 Fleetwood/Coleman Utah
Oct 10, 2013
7,641
Northern Virginia
Great job. i Agree way cheaper than the alternate. I’m kind of curious about this “foot” out of pvc you are talking about above.
 

Canvas Cur

Member
Sep 29, 2016
93
South West Florida
I wanted to prevent the pole that holds the shade sail up from moving around on the ground (by accident or wind), so this allows the bottom Cabela pole with the adjustment lever to fit snugly and stay in place even if bumped (now who would do that in the middle of the night heading to the bathroom? LOL) . This is just the right size to snugly hold the pole. I could even drill a hole through the cap and the pipe and put a pin through both to prevent wind lift, but will see how this does first. Here's a pic of the cap with the 10" tent stake inserted in the hole. I will tap the tent stake in as far as possible without hitting the PVC cap, then finish by tapping the head of the stake (really a large nail from HF sold as tent pins) with another one (head to head) until snug in the ground. Most of the ground we camp on is sandy dirt (or dirty sand) so it should go in easily. We use these pins all the time for our Clam screen room and they do a good job.
I decided to order the 12X12X12 shade sail (got 10% off this order from Alion Home) so may use the other size for the big side window. For that one, I may try a mount on the side of the camper (or underneath on the frame) and a tent pole extending out at an angle. Maybe held in place by a flag mount. That way no guy rope is needed. Then I can leave the window open on that side in a moderate rain.
 

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Canvas Cur

Member
Sep 29, 2016
93
South West Florida
Just installed the 12X12X12 shade sail to see how much more coverage it will give. Comes almost down to the end of the roof panels. Covers the door and the little window better and if the sun is on the AC, should give it a little protection. Hoping one guy rope will stabilize it, but have more rope and stakes if needed. Now, to figure out how to mount the 10X10 over the back side to protect the big window. Meanwhile, here's a few pics of the larger canopy in place. BTW, this supplier (Alion Home on Etsy) has a 16X16X16 which might be better for the bigger, longer Aliners like 12 & 15. But even for those models, the 12 might be all you need to protect the door area.
 

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SHFL

Active Member
Jan 6, 2015
540
Florida
Looks great!

You may want to use 2 lines to secure the pole.

Looking at the camper, and if your pole is at the center of a clock, your line and stake are at 6:00.
You could use 2 lines — one at 7:30 and the other at 4:30. That gives better side-to-side stability.
 

Canvas Cur

Member
Sep 29, 2016
93
South West Florida
Good advice! After watching it sway side-to-side in a light wind, I was wondering if I might need to do that. No worse than having to use 2 guy ropes on the pup canopy that we had. That will give us a good place to tie our clothesline rope in parks where they don't want you tie to trees!
 

AstroBob

Member
Jul 6, 2021
37
Picked up a "Belavi Sun Shade Sail" at aldi for $24. It is 13.6x13.6x13.6. It has 6 attachment points. I already have some tarp poles, so I'll give it a try.

Edit: OK, I am using it as I type this. No modifications of any kind were needed to the aliner. the center loop fits nicely over the wind pole mount. Easy-peasey.
 

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Sjm9911

Super Active Member
May 31, 2018
11,978
Nj
Just a thought, on the side of the a liner where the bungies are, you may want to put something on the end of the bungie or under it to prevent the head from scratching the a liner. When the wind blows that thing will move around. So, tape or dip the head in like plastic dip. Unless the head is plastic allready? I cant tell from the pics.
 

Canvas Cur

Member
Sep 29, 2016
93
South West Florida
The bungees I am using now are from HF. They are like flat instead of round. The hook parts are nice, thick plastic. I will watch for movement, though. Thanks for that heads up. I thought of using a half pool noodle on each side if that becomes a problem. I can push the hook down through and come out the other side. Better than risking scratches on the Adzel material.

AstroBob: Good deal on that sail from Aldi! Snap a pic and let us see how it comes out.
 

AstroBob

Member
Jul 6, 2021
37
The bungees I am using now are from HF. They are like flat instead of round. The hook parts are nice, thick plastic. I will watch for movement, though. Thanks for that heads up. I thought of using a half pool noodle on each side if that becomes a problem. I can push the hook down through and come out the other side. Better than risking scratches on the Adzel material.

AstroBob: Good deal on that sail from Aldi! Snap a pic and let us see how it comes out.
 

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Canvas Cur

Member
Sep 29, 2016
93
South West Florida
Clever how that fits over the dormer! I didn't have a wind pole mount so had to improvise. Seems to work OK though. Can't wait 'til October for our first outing to see how it does. Too hot now to camp, plus cooler weather=less (never none LOL) bugs.
 




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