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57 posts

Master Geek


# 223686 12-Oct-2017 16:18
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Hi all,

 

Our deck gets a huge amount of sun during the day and as it is our primary outdoor living space, we spend a fair bit of time out there.

 

Unfortunately, it is one story off the ground as we live on the side of a gully, it can catch a fair bit of wind.

 

We've looked at louvred roofs but they're very very expensive. We've also looked at shade sails and got quite  a hefty price to have a rectangular one fitted for our space (approx 6m x 2.5m) due to the need for engineering a galvanised post for one corner.

 

The third option we've considered is a retractable awning. We've only had one quote but it was only marginally more than the shade sail option. The main advantage I can see is that when we don't want shade out there, the retractable awning will be pretty much invisible.

 

My main concern is longevity (as it still isn't a cheap exercise) and how much of a breeze they can cope with, as it can be very hot out on the deck in the sun yet still a bit breezy, probably due to the deck being so high off the ground and on the side of said gully.

 

What are peoples experiences with them and are there any recommendations of companies to talk to about them?

 

Thanks.


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Banana?
4904 posts

Uber Geek

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  # 1882542 12-Oct-2017 16:24
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We had one in our last house. We would just wind it in when the wind was up, and at night (or when we weren't using the deck). It died of old age in the end (probably about 12 years old, living on a north facing deck) when we took it down. Replaced it with another one before we sold the house.

 

Would recommend - we would wind it right out, then a couple of winds back in to tighten the canvas and provide a little bit more resistance against the wind. Much better than an umbrella.


9105 posts

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  # 1882548 12-Oct-2017 16:41
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We saw these at the home show and love them, we originally were looking at fixed/rotating louvres but they blocked too much light for us (we are looking for solar gain. the below product allows you to open it right up when you dont need it.

 

https://oztech.com/retractable-roof-systems/


 
 
 
 


Baby Get Shaky!
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  # 1882550 12-Oct-2017 16:47
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Is it a motorised retractable awning you are looking at? My in laws have one which is about 10 years old. They've just had to replace the canvas due to wear and tear but the mechanics are still sound. It was fitted with a small wind guage which automatically withdraws it if the wind gets over a certain point. So if they forget about it and the wind picks up it will withdraw to a safe distance. There's is (I believe) a Cabriolet Canopy Awning from Johnson & Couzins in Chch. Unsure where you are but the build quality seems good with theirs (although the service can be lacking from them).


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  # 1882556 12-Oct-2017 17:10
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Coincidentally we are looking at exactly the right thing right now and situation/circs sound identical to yours - facing exactly the same issues.

Where are you located?




Sometimes I just sit and think. Other times I just sit.


4106 posts

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  # 1882824 13-Oct-2017 09:51
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eracode: Coincidentally we are looking at exactly the right thing right now and situation/circs sound identical to yours - facing exactly the same issues.

Where are you located?

 

 

 

Sorry - meant 'looking at exactly the same thing' ...





Sometimes I just sit and think. Other times I just sit.


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  # 1882830 13-Oct-2017 10:10
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kingjj:

 

Is it a motorised retractable awning you are looking at? My in laws have one which is about 10 years old. They've just had to replace the canvas due to wear and tear but the mechanics are still sound. It was fitted with a small wind guage which automatically withdraws it if the wind gets over a certain point. So if they forget about it and the wind picks up it will withdraw to a safe distance. There's is (I believe) a Cabriolet Canopy Awning from Johnson & Couzins in Chch. Unsure where you are but the build quality seems good with theirs (although the service can be lacking from them).

 

 

 

 

That's more like it. This is Geek Zone so our retractable awnings are to be motorised and automated with wind and sunshine sensors and wifi control please!

 

 


9028 posts

Uber Geek


  # 1882857 13-Oct-2017 10:37
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I set up this retractable system over our N facing deck:

 

 

Poles are 65x65 galv, wires it's suspended on are SS braided rigging wire 4mm.  Polyester canvas - quite expensive for premium grade, the aluminium extrusions fairly standard.  The deck level is about 3.5m above ground level.  It's quite a windy location.  In Chch so hot days are often windy - from the Nor'west.

 

 

Fully retracted, the awning sits under the eaves - more or less hurricane proof.

 

 

Originally it could only be either fully extended or retracted.  I still wanted it safely usable on windy days - to keep sun out of our lounge, so added some chain, loops etc so it could be extended as required. PArt extended like this, it'll handle all but the most severe wind without flogging itself to death.

 

 

It's set up with blocks (pulleys) in the corners and on the poles, looped so that pulling one way on the rope extends it, pulling it the other way retracts, then tie it off on a small bollard.

 

I could automate that I suppose, but nah... It might be geeky to do, but It'd need to be bullet-proof reliable in auto-retracting.

 

Issues encountered, I didn't have enough fall-off for it to drain, then of course if it rains then it fills with water - the canvas is waterproof. Sorted by dropping the cables.  In the second photo there's a spare cable on the back of the chair.  After setting it up, then later deciding to drop / shift the cables, I learned the hard way about SS rigging screws held under tension for long periods.  The threads seize, and when you try to undo them then 6mm threaded rigging screw fittings shear off.  Now fixed with teflon thread lube in case I need to adjust them again.  The low end is 2m above deck level.
The poles are screwed into gluelam poles forming the balustrade structure. There's quite a lot of tension on them to keep the wire straight - they're fine, but I wouldn't try this with standard treated pine balustrade posts - they'll probably warp.

 

Setting up the endless loop rigging system wasn't exactly intuitive.  First attempt, the rope I used was a bit stretchy and too thin, swapped that out for 5mm braided spectra type rope, which doesn't stretch.

 

 


 
 
 
 




57 posts

Master Geek


  # 1882869 13-Oct-2017 10:51
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@Fred99, your setup looks really great. I'd be interested to know what the final cost was (even just roughly) to see how it compares and where I'd need to go to get materials.

 

 

 

In our case, the deck has a glass balustrade so the posts would have to go to the deck surface and be secured through it to the framing underneath and the poles would have to be quite long, say 3m long as the eave above the deck is probably 3.5m above the deck surface.


9028 posts

Uber Geek


  # 1882877 13-Oct-2017 11:10
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Cost was about $2,500, but it would have probably cost more to have the canvas awning company do the install (I DIY)

 

If I did it again - and if there was a situation as you describe, with longer poles needed and a glass balustrade with no strong fixing, I'd set it up differently. Probably make a frame up out of steel RHS, running back to the eaves, kind of like a gazebo.  To suspend the awning cross members, I'd probably use something like sailboat genoa track attached under the top rail.

 

I think if you tried to mount 3m poles on the deck floor attached to joists under, then tighten up the wires as I've done to keep the awning as flat as possible, then something will break.

 

Those poles I used are 65x65x3mm, only about 2.2m, they're fixed at about 100mm above deck level, and at about 900mm - so only the top 1.3m or so is taking the tension, but the poles are slightly visibly bent under that tension.

 

It's okay - but at about the limit - wouldn't want longer poles or more tension without seriously beefing things up.


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  # 1882879 13-Oct-2017 11:18
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Our deck is one storey up with glass balustrading - like the OP's. The deck is 5m x 2.7m but because of the eaves, the awning/pergola we need is a bit over 5m x 2m.

 

We have a quote of about $18k from LouvreTec for a pivoting blade type fixed pergola. An 'estimate' from Johnson & Couzins (without them coming to actually look at the job - the salesman didn't seem keen to travel) was a similar price for a similar solution.

 

Although we quite like the louvre idea, we now think that approach is going to block out too much light, even with louvres open, partly because the supporting frame has quite deep beams.

 

So we are waiting for a quote to come in from Pergola NZ for a solution they import from an Austrian manufacturer that has a light-ish frame and a retractable awning with no swing-arms.

 

http://pergolanz.co.nz/pergo-line/

 

Looks like the love-child of a light fixed pergola and a standard retractable awning. At this point, it appears to be pretty much what we are looking for. 

 

 





Sometimes I just sit and think. Other times I just sit.


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  # 1882897 13-Oct-2017 11:30
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That looks good. Sis has something similar installed on an existing pergola. Not sure who built it or exactly how much but it was expensive - really interested to hear about your quote if you are prepared to share.


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  # 1882899 13-Oct-2017 11:33
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Yeah - these louvre outfits charge like wounded male ruminants. Happy to share the quote when it comes in.





Sometimes I just sit and think. Other times I just sit.


6 posts

Wannabe Geek

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  # 1882960 13-Oct-2017 12:51
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We have had a motorised retractable awning installed and find it to be great. We avoided a manually operated one on the basis that it wouldn't get used a lot of the time, and if it was extended and left out, it was likely to finish up broken from wind damage.

 

The motorised one has a remote control. It is also fitted with a sensor to retract the unit in high winds. Earlier units had anemometers, but they can be quite sensitive to wind direction - that is, they don't work consistently for different wind directions. The one we had fitted is an accelerometer fitted to the bar that extends. When the outside edge of the awning is being buffeted up and down by the wind to more than a set limit, it rolls the awning in.

 

Our one extends about 3.5m, but the further it extends then the more load on the arms as they cantilever out from the wall. So in stronger winds I tend to only put it out part way to limit the movement.

 

Overall - expensive, but works really well, so very happy with it.


936 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 1882987 13-Oct-2017 13:23
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We have a manual Venluree awning that came with the house.  About 6m long and 3m deep. 

 

When it works on those half dozen days that it isn't too windy it is great, however most of the time it is useless.  Anything more than a gentle breeze and it blows around enough to make me nervous.  I have tried tying the ends down and that stops it to a certain extent.  You can't use it in the rain as the water pools.  Also because it is manual it is a pain to wind in and out.  It is also starting to rust (would be around 10 years old).

 

I would much rather have a pergola with clearlite/polycarb roofing


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