Casita awning - weight and drag - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-15-2016, 11:59 AM   #1
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Name: Shelia
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Casita awning - weight and drag

I was talking with Chasidy at Casita last week and she told me that the dry weight of their Casitas include all options. I was under the impression that you start with the dry weight and then add the weight of each option. Was I mistaken?

How much do you think a Casita awning weighs? I've read on here where several people opted not to have an awning because of the drag while towing. Any thoughts on that?

I had thought about skipping the awning and using a patio umbrella just for aesthetics, but once you have to weight the patio umbrella to keep it upright, would probably be losing any weight benefit. Thoughts welcome on that too.

Thanks. I'm learning so much from reading these forums.
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Old 08-15-2016, 01:40 PM   #2
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The Fiamma 45 S awning (10 ft. length) weighs about 51 Lbs., not counting mounting brackets, but those should be negligible (less than 5 Lbs.)

FWIW, I removed mine and like the trailer much better without it. Some folks swear by them, others swear at them. I don't miss mine at all. I use a Keder welt slide in awning if I'm only setting up for a night, otherwise I use my Clam screen room.

Weighting down the stand-alone canopy wouldn't require you to pack all that extra weight. Just bring some empty plastic buckets and fill them with water when you get where you're going.

First pic is the 7 ft. Keder rail I installed. The second one shows the 17SD without awning. I think it definitely looks more streamlined and cleaner without it. YMMV
Attached Thumbnails
Keder Rail2.JPG   Keder Rail1.JPG  

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Old 08-15-2016, 02:53 PM   #3
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I doubt you could measure the drag towing it, so I guess if you like it's looks without it...there's your answer.
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Old 08-15-2016, 03:09 PM   #4
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We have ,use ,like the awning on our Casita
Don' t care about drag
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Old 08-15-2016, 03:15 PM   #5
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Hi Greg

A couple F45 questions as I'm looking at them for my Trillium (sorry Shelia I don't mean to highjack your thread).
Did you install your yourself or had it installed?
Does Fiamma had some mounting brackets that fit the curved shape of your Casita or did you had to fabricate them?

I also like the clean look without the awning, but I think I'd prefer even more to have the awning.
Not sure about the aerodynamic drag, an awning certainly doesn't help, but the added drag can't be that much (unless one forgets to retract it!).
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Old 08-15-2016, 04:05 PM   #6
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People we know from Texas made it a requirement that any trailer they buy must have an awning. Makes sense to me. Wouldn't worry about drag.

Can't believe dry weight includes options. Maybe they meant that all standard features are included in dry weight?



Quote:
Originally Posted by Shelia View Post
I was talking with Chasidy at Casita last week and she told me that the dry weight of their Casitas include all options. I was under the impression that you start with the dry weight and then add the weight of each option. Was I mistaken?

How much do you think a Casita awning weighs? I've read on here where several people opted not to have an awning because of the drag while towing. Any thoughts on that?

I had thought about skipping the awning and using a patio umbrella just for aesthetics, but once you have to weight the patio umbrella to keep it upright, would probably be losing any weight benefit. Thoughts welcome on that too.

Thanks. I'm learning so much from reading these forums.
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Old 08-15-2016, 05:49 PM   #7
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Trailer: 2013 Casita Spirit Deluxe 17, purchased from original owners May, 2016
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The Fiamma awning on our NTU Casita certainly came in handy at Wells State Park (MA) in June, when an infestation of Gypsy Moth caterpillars rained frass (caterpillar excrement) down on us all day. Of course I had to mop the awning after we got home.

I don't know how you'd tell how much wind drag it creates without some careful measurements, probably in a wind tunnel. It's just a long tube in the direction of travel, not a sail—unless you leave it open.

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Old 08-16-2016, 08:56 AM   #8
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We opted out of the factory installed awning on our 2015 SD17. We full-time. Drag was a factor, as was simplicity. We have a screen room (Coleman) that weighs 30 lbs. Provides shade and bug relief, as well as more square footage of living space.
I am considering one of the more stowable awnings that slide along a channel, as a poster above noted.
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Old 08-16-2016, 09:13 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carl V View Post
Hi Greg

A couple F45 questions as I'm looking at them for my Trillium (sorry Shelia I don't mean to highjack your thread).
Did you install your yourself or had it installed?
Does Fiamma had some mounting brackets that fit the curved shape of your Casita or did you had to fabricate them?

I also like the clean look without the awning, but I think I'd prefer even more to have the awning.
Not sure about the aerodynamic drag, an awning certainly doesn't help, but the added drag can't be that much (unless one forgets to retract it!).
The awning was originally installed at the factory. I don't know if Casita makes their own curved mounting brackets or if they have them produced by another fabrication shop. In any case, the Casita mounts are not made by Fiamma, but you could probably get the set directly from Casita if you call them.

The Fiamma awnings, like pretty much most awnings I've seen, were designed to be mounted to a vertical flush side wall, (like most stick-built trailers,) and were never designed to be mounted to a curved surface, (like most F/G trailers.).

My reason for removing it was not based on wind drag or aerodynamics. I just didn't like the gap between the trailer and the awning. It made little sense to have an awning and still have rainwater run down the side of your trailer, making anything near to the trailer soaking wet. Why bother? I have always thought that the mounting brackets were ill-designed and poorly planned for having them be functionally useful with these awnings. Understand that I don't have a problem with the Fiamma awning, just with the useless "afterthought" brackets they choose to mount it with. If you're looking just for sun shade, I suppose that they would suffice for that purpose. I happen to live in the Pacific Northwet (sic) where it rains more than not. (It's not called the "Evergreen State" because of having a dry climate.) What good is an awning in the NW if it doesn't provide rain shelter? I also tried several "cures" for sealing the gap, as many on here have also done, but then only to find that it created a nasty mess of dirt, tree debris and who-knows-what that collected in the trough created by the sealing material in the gap. Needless to say, it was a major pain to clean, and I soon grew tired of that ordeal.

As an aside, since it I removed it, I really do like the looks and symmetry of the trailer's lines much better without it. As I mentioned above, I installed a 7 ft Keder slide in rail for a bag awning or a rope and pole awning for very short trips, (or to occasionally use in small campsites where there is little room,) and we normally use our Clam screen tent for times when we are going to be set up for a few days or longer. Incidentally, the slide-in Keder awning doesn't allow rain to run down the side of the trailer because it is mounted directly (and tightly) to the trailer shell. No gaps = no leaks.

As also mentioned earlier, there are two basic factions to the awning debate, those who like them, and those who don't like them. Purely a personal choice, but for me - I like it better without it. YMMV
Greg
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Old 08-16-2016, 09:25 AM   #10
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Thanks Greg

Yeah, I've read a lot of opinions on both sides, still I think I'd like to get one.
I saw they have many type of brackets available for specific RVs, in any case I'm able to fabricate some if it comes to this.

Fiammas are very expensive on my side of the border, so we might start with a standalone screen room and expect that the exchange rate will eventually get more favorable for us. They're like over 2K right now for the size we need.

Thank you!
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Old 08-16-2016, 10:34 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Casita Greg View Post
The awning was originally installed at the factory. I don't know if Casita makes their own curved mounting brackets or if they have them produced by another fabrication shop. In any case, the Casita mounts are not made by Fiamma, but you could probably get the set directly from Casita if you call them.

The Fiamma awnings, like pretty much most awnings I've seen, were designed to be mounted to a vertical flush side wall, (like most stick-built trailers,) and were never designed to be mounted to a curved surface, (like most F/G trailers.).

My reason for removing it was not based on wind drag or aerodynamics. I just didn't like the gap between the trailer and the awning. It made little sense to have an awning and still have rainwater run down the side of your trailer, making anything near to the trailer soaking wet. Why bother? I have always thought that the mounting brackets were ill-designed and poorly planned for having them be functionally useful with these awnings. Understand that I don't have a problem with the Fiamma awning, just with the useless "afterthought" brackets they choose to mount it with. If you're looking just for sun shade, I suppose that they would suffice for that purpose. I happen to live in the Pacific Northwet (sic) where it rains more than not. (It's not called the "Evergreen State" because of having a dry climate.) What good is an awning in the NW if it doesn't provide rain shelter? I also tried several "cures" for sealing the gap, as many on here have also done, but then only to find that it created a nasty mess of dirt, tree debris and who-knows-what that collected in the trough created by the sealing material in the gap. Needless to say, it was a major pain to clean, and I soon grew tired of that ordeal.

As an aside, since it I removed it, I really do like the looks and symmetry of the trailer's lines much better without it. As I mentioned above, I installed a 7 ft Keder slide in rail for a bag awning or a rope and pole awning for very short trips, (or to occasionally use in small campsites where there is little room,) and we normally use our Clam screen tent for times when we are going to be set up for a few days or longer. Incidentally, the slide-in Keder awning doesn't allow rain to run down the side of the trailer because it is mounted directly (and tightly) to the trailer shell. No gaps = no leaks.

As also mentioned earlier, there are two basic factions to the awning debate, those who like them, and those who don't like them. Purely a personal choice, but for me - I like it better without it. YMMV
Greg
On our old trailer there was a piece of foam between the awning and the trailer body. While the Foam did keep water from running down the side of the trailer , it also trapped dirt and leaves on the roof ,which was a PITA to clean and left stains on the roof .
Plus there were rivets that break trapped under the foam .
I much prefer the Casita mounting set up but we use our awning basically for shade.
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Old 08-16-2016, 12:55 PM   #12
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Trailer: 2013 Casita Spirit Deluxe 17, purchased from original owners May, 2016
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
On our old trailer there was a piece of foam between the awning and the trailer body. While the Foam did keep water from running down the side of the trailer , it also trapped dirt and leaves on the roof ,which was a PITA to clean and left stains on the roof .
Plus there were rivets that break trapped under the foam .
I much prefer the Casita mounting set up but we use our awning basically for shade.
The previous owner of our Casita put some purple foam between the body of the trailer and the awning tube. Keeps most of the rain from running down between, though not all. Haven't gotten up to clean there, but probably should.

/Mr Lynn
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Old 08-20-2016, 06:00 AM   #13
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Name: Joe
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If I were concerned about drag the first thing I would leave off is the AC.

If simplicity is of concern I find my awning pretty simple to setup and take down.
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Old 08-20-2016, 08:01 AM   #14
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Our first Casita was older (1989, we were the 3rd owners) and didn't have an awning. First time that we took it out with a small market umbrella (that we normally used in the middle of a patio table at home), the umbrella blew over and broke one of the spokes. Very sad. Obviously that patio table gave it stability that it required in addition to the weight of the stand.

Next Casita we ordered new and got the awning. We installed a (vinyl) gutter edge beneath it, which does trap leaves but is easy to keep clear. It doesn't help much in a hard rain, but works in a drizzle.

YMMV.
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