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Installing (and Modifying) ShadePro's VistaShade on the RV.

Every once in awhile you run across a product that is so innovative that you want it to work - at least out of the box. I had high hopes for this Vista Shade by ShadePro, but unfortunately I was disappointed. Unfortunately the shade was 6" too long for my factory installed Dometic electric awning on my RV.

ShadePro's Vista Shade

I did not see any options on the website when ordering for a 6" shorter shade. The standard sizes I could use were either were 10ft or 13ft long. Ten feet would obvously be way too short to maximize the shade, and 13ft was 6" too long.

 

 


Project video.

 

Since I have a commercial sewing maching, we were able to make the modifications to the shade. We basically cut 6" off one end, then re-sewed all of the hems, folds, and zipper tracks to make the shade function again. This was not a difficult procedure, but it does take a sewing machine capable of making the modification.

I have to say, that with the proper size, I really like the shade. I would highly recommend this shade if it were sized properly to your RV. To determine that, measure the awning tube (the aluminum tube that the awning rolls up on).

The sizes of the Vista shades are exactly the length advertised... i.e. the 13ft shade is exactly 13ft long. So, if the awning tube is equal or slightly longer than the size of the shade, it will fit. Otherwise, you will have to order the next shorter length or modify the shade like I did.

I also ran across some rather cool bungie straps for the shade. Unfortunetly though, the "T" fitting is too large to fit through the grommets in the shade. So I put a loop in the ropes that were included with the shade to allow their use.

 

 

 

While you can use other type methods of securing the shade bottom to the ground, I recommend some kind of bungie or elastic, since it will help keep the awning taught in light winds. The bungies are no substitute to protecting the awning in high winds - you still need to retract the awning in those situations.

However, securing the shade base with bungies will keep the awning from flopping around in light winds.

Since the shade uses the track in the awning roller tube, you will not be able to hang any lights from that point. But many RVs these days (including mine) have LED strips already built-in to the awning, and if your's doesn't, you can either take that on as a project, or buy an aftermarket device that in effect is a track "Wye".

 


Modification Video.

References:

ShadePro's Vista Shade for electric awnings.
ShadePro's Vista Shade for manual awnings.