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First (failed) go with awning!

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    First (failed) go with awning!

    Hi, I've just had an hour or two (or was it three?) trying to put up my brand new Movelite square awning. Not a great success. Husband stood by and watched because I needed to be able to erect it on my own. The instructions didn't make sense because it said slacken the adjustable black straps near the metal pins but there were no adjustable black straps anywhere. I didn't think that was a problem so threaded the poles through (after fixing them together because it's what I did for my very easy erect by one person 4 man tent) and then eventually got 3 of the metal pins in the end but could not get the 4th one in. I messed about with the fabric making sure it was positioned right but still didn't have the strenght to pull the material tight enough to get the pin in. My husband then intervened because I was glaring at him and when he tried he got it in but the awning ripped where the pole sticks out! On my 4 man tent the straps are adjustable so I don't see why they're not on the awning, it would make life a lot easier. Eventually I got it up but one pole was bent at a very strange angle because of having to force it in the pin. I managed to get the hoody over the back of the Romahome so I suppose it would just about be OK. I will try next time to do what one of the members suggested which is to fix the hoody under the skylight first but I don't know if I'll be able to reach to thread the poles in if I do that. To finish off with, I spent ages folding it as small as pos to go back in the back which it seemed to do quite easily but then I noticed that the underneath seam of the bag had split!! Oh what fun. I must have a couple of practises before going to Sandringham otherwise I'll feel such an idiot taking three and a half hours to erect an awning. Maybe I'll wait till dark so I don't feel so useless.

    #2
    Oh dear!

    All I can say is it gets easier with practice!

    I'm going away with mine in a few weeks, so I'll take step by step photo's for you!

    It sounds like you didn't put the poles all the way through the tent sleeves and lay them crosswise on the ground (or see below if using the skylight method first!) before you put in the pegs. When you thread the poles in first, then make sure that they are even on both sides (I think that about 3 lengths of poles stuck out of the sleeves on each side of mine), then put the pins in at opposite ends first, that should make it a whole lot easier. It sort of goes up on its own as you pull the poles towards the pins that way. It does take a bit of effort though, but I'm only 5ft nowt with a bad back and I can manage the larger Movelite and put it up all by myself! I think I stand on the pin end and guide the pole towards it.

    It needs to be taut, that's why it's a little bit hard to put the ends of the poles into the pins.

    If I'm correct in saying this, I didn't think the M. Square has adjustable black straps, but the larger ones do.

    If you bought it new it should be under guarantee, sounds like you have the wrong bag and wrong instructions!

    Edited to add - just to quote you:
    I will try next time to do what one of the members suggested which is to fix the hoody under the skylight first but I don't know if I'll be able to reach to thread the poles in if I do that.

    This is exactly what I do. Then I thread the poles in and across each other from both bottom ends, they stick out at the top like a giant cross at the back of your van. Then put one pin in, move to the opposite side (same pole) and a quick push upwards and put the other pin in, repeat at the other side furthest away first, then the pin nearest the van.
    Last edited by jayjay; 18-09-2012, 17:18.

    Comment


      #3
      Thanks jayjay!

      Originally posted by jayjay View Post
      Oh dear!

      All I can say is it gets easier with practice!

      I'm going away with mine in a few weeks, so I'll take step by step photo's for you!

      It sounds like you didn't put the poles all the way through the tent sleeves and lay them crosswise on the ground (or see below if using the skylight method first!) before you put in the pegs. When you thread the poles in first, then make sure that they are even on both sides (I think that about 3 lengths of poles stuck out of the sleeves on each side of mine), then put the pins in at opposite ends first, that should make it a whole lot easier. It sort of goes up on its own as you pull the poles towards the pins that way. It does take a bit of effort though, but I'm only 5ft nowt with a bad back and I can manage the larger Movelite and put it up all by myself! I think I stand on the pin end and guide the pole towards it.

      It needs to be taut, that's why it's a little bit hard to put the ends of the poles into the pins.

      If I'm correct in saying this, I didn't think the M. Square has adjustable black straps, but the larger ones do.

      If you bought it new it should be under guarantee, sounds like you have the wrong bag and wrong instructions!

      Edited to add - just to quote you:
      I will try next time to do what one of the members suggested which is to fix the hoody under the skylight first but I don't know if I'll be able to reach to thread the poles in if I do that.

      This is exactly what I do. Then I thread the poles in and across each other from both bottom ends, they stick out at the top like a giant cross at the back of your van. Then put one pin in, move to the opposite side (same pole) and a quick push upwards and put the other pin in, repeat at the other side furthest away first, then the pin nearest the van.
      Thanks so much jayjay, I actually phoned the manufacturer who said I must have forgotten to slacken the adjustable straps which are only on 2 ends of the pin bits. I apologised thinking I must have looked at the 2 without adjustable straps and took it out of the bag again to look carefully but could not find an adjustable strap anywhere!! So...thank you so much for letting me know that the movelite square doesn't have adjustable straps; it's a pity the man at the factory didn't know and that the instructions tell you that there are some. I will do as you say and fix it by the hoody first next time. I'm sure I'll get used to it. I really can't get it back in the bag without much time and effort so will use a larger canvas bag for storage and as I camp alone it can go on the passenger seat if I decide not to use it. Thanks again for your invaluable help....much appreciated. Bunny.
      Last edited by glenw; 18-09-2012, 19:47.

      Comment


        #4
        If it's any consolation, I managed to rip the bag that my Outhouse Handi utility tent (same manufacturer) came in, trying to pack the tent back in.

        2 years later and everything seems to fit in easier - either the bag has stretched or the tent is 'squishing'* down to a smaller volume.

        * - technical tent term
        Neil

        Comment


          #5
          I think you've just confirmed my thoughts that I'd never be able to put one of these up on my own.

          Jayjay is Superwoman!

          I shall go for a freestanding pop-up fishing tent instead; I only need it to store the bike & chair in. If it's good weather I don't need an awning, if it's bad weather I'll stay inside the van anyway. Sorted.

          Comment


            #6
            Practice makes perfect.
            derek b and Babs

            Comment


              #7
              Oh blimey - I have all this to come with my new awning.

              But you should have seen me trying to fold up the pop up loo tent on the one camping trip I've done so far in my van. Picture a lone woman having a tearful tantrum alone in a field while losing a wrestling match with a hang glider and you're on the right lines. It took a deep breath and a YouTube vid to get it sorted.

              Comment


                #8
                It does get easier with time .. I have successfully put mine up a couple times on my own now .. and I'm the same as jayjay .. 5ft nothing ..

                keep practising .. think I managed mine on about the 3rd time .. but also if some kind camper offers to help.. smile sweetly and say yes please .. it's easier with 2 ..
                I make occasional visits to reality, but I'm not a full time resident
                http://minimouseandmilos.blogspot.com

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by Minimouse View Post
                  It does get easier with time .. I have successfully put mine up a couple times on my own now .. and I'm the same as jayjay .. 5ft nothing ..

                  keep practising .. think I managed mine on about the 3rd time .. but also if some kind camper offers to help.. smile sweetly and say yes please .. it's easier with 2 ..
                  I was just about to say the same - easier with two, especially if you stand at opposite ends and slot the ends of the poles into the pins at the same time. Can be done alone though!

                  I have to take my time when putting mine up and stop for rests, so it takes longer than when someone is with me.

                  Does anyone know if the Square does have the adjustable straps? My old movelite was one of the earlier versions, not called a Square, but it didn't have adjustable straps. My new one (a Midi I think?) does have these.

                  The bag that the Midi comes in (and it's much larger than the Square) is smaller and I will probably get a different bag for it as well! I have got it in, but it's extremely difficult, more so than putting it up, despite lots of 'Squishing'!

                  Did you see Graham's step by step video on the SMH YouTube channel?

                  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MA16a...ure=plpp_video
                  Last edited by jayjay; 19-09-2012, 08:58.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    awnings

                    I used my Outhouse again on a trip to the New Forest last week. I found it invaluable for storing two bikes and my chair and table. It was very easy to put up alone but I accepted some help to pack it away although could easily have done it on my own. I never see any point in struggling if some kind person offers assistance always though in the knowledge I could manage alone if necessary. Books have been written on the theme that life is not meant to be a struggle!

                    I have always packed my tents away in two bags. One for the canvas/nylon and one for the poles/pegs. Even using more bags if I had inners etc. I do not see any point trying to push and shove it all back in the original bag because it risks damaging the tent and my back/sanity! Really does not take up much more room and makes life so much easier as long as you don't forget one of the bags!

                    Lizzie

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Hi Bunny

                      I live very close to Sandringham and in fact I run there or walk the dog there every other day. If you have a drama and can't get the awning up give me a shout I'd be happy to come and help.
                      Originally posted by Bunny View Post
                      Hi, I've just had an hour or two (or was it three?) trying to put up my brand new Movelite square awning. Not a great success. Husband stood by and watched because I needed to be able to erect it on my own. The instructions didn't make sense because it said slacken the adjustable black straps near the metal pins but there were no adjustable black straps anywhere. I didn't think that was a problem so threaded the poles through (after fixing them together because it's what I did for my very easy erect by one person 4 man tent) and then eventually got 3 of the metal pins in the end but could not get the 4th one in. I messed about with the fabric making sure it was positioned right but still didn't have the strenght to pull the material tight enough to get the pin in. My husband then intervened because I was glaring at him and when he tried he got it in but the awning ripped where the pole sticks out! On my 4 man tent the straps are adjustable so I don't see why they're not on the awning, it would make life a lot easier. Eventually I got it up but one pole was bent at a very strange angle because of having to force it in the pin. I managed to get the hoody over the back of the Romahome so I suppose it would just about be OK. I will try next time to do what one of the members suggested which is to fix the hoody under the skylight first but I don't know if I'll be able to reach to thread the poles in if I do that. To finish off with, I spent ages folding it as small as pos to go back in the back which it seemed to do quite easily but then I noticed that the underneath seam of the bag had split!! Oh what fun. I must have a couple of practises before going to Sandringham otherwise I'll feel such an idiot taking three and a half hours to erect an awning. Maybe I'll wait till dark so I don't feel so useless.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by Caz View Post
                        I think you've just confirmed my thoughts that I'd never be able to put one of these up on my own.

                        Jayjay is Superwoman!
                        Too right! At Moira we used my mallet to hammer her sun umbrella into the ground, which was pretty firm. When I asked how she had pegged down the Movelite, she told me she had just used her hands!!!
                        Neil

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by 1_man_and_his_dob(lo) View Post
                          Too right! At Moira we used my mallet to hammer her sun umbrella into the ground, which was pretty firm. When I asked how she had pegged down the Movelite, she told me she had just used her hands!!!
                          The ground was very soft!

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Thanks Minimouse...

                            Originally posted by Minimouse View Post
                            It does get easier with time .. I have successfully put mine up a couple times on my own now .. and I'm the same as jayjay .. 5ft nothing ..

                            keep practising .. think I managed mine on about the 3rd time .. but also if some kind camper offers to help.. smile sweetly and say yes please .. it's easier with 2 ..
                            Thanks for the encouragement; I'm sure I'll be fine with it after a couple more practises. I just thought that because I can erect a 4 man tent on my own in about 20 minutes maximum that an awning would be a doddle. The tent had 4 lots of poles which threaded through to make 4 seperate half circles then you just tugged it all up and it stayed there. If 2 people at 5' nothing can do it I should be ashamed of myself.....I'm 5' 8". The downside of that is that I can't stand up in my C15 and I nearly always have back ache by the end of a trip. (Hence the awning.)

                            Happy camping.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by Bunny View Post
                              The downside of that is that I can't stand up in my C15 and I nearly always have back ache by the end of a trip. (Hence the awning.)

                              Happy camping.
                              I could only stand up in the end bit by the door in my demountable, I spent the rest of the time crouching and diving under the seats/up in the luton for things. I have back probs anyway and it was worse when away in the Roma. It was all soo much easier after I got the awning - a couple of chairs and a table. Everything I needed just went outside, so I didn't have to root for things.

                              Comment

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