Shade Sail Installation FAQs
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What people often ask us is how do I know if it will fit my yard? Now if you don’t have the sail, you look at the sizes that are available on the website under the pre-cut sails.
The best way to do it is to take some rope.
So if you notice say like a 17 foot triangle, take a rope, take a measuring tape, make out your sail out of rope, so make 17 feet all the way around if that’s the size that you’re thinking may work. Tying the rope together allows you to gives you the shape of the sail. So then you can figure out what points you can attach to.
Once you have your rope sail mapped out, the size you think may work, move it around and see where, what points you might be able to attach to. You might build attach to that post and that roof line, or you might be able to attach to that brick wall, and making the sail out a rope allows you to tell where you can attach it, it allows you to show what fits, how the sail may fit.
It gives you an indication without having the sail there, where you might be able to attach to on your house, or where you may have to put a post. It’s also key to understand that you don’t necessarily need to have the sail attached right to the post, and I’ll show you what I mean.
In this instance here, if the sail stops here, let’s say, I can cable a distance to the post, and you’ll notice that we did that on the other video of the one previous to this.
So you can cable a distance or use rope or chain to go to a distance, a tree or a post off in the distance, you don’t necessarily have to have the sail at all contact points, right close, you can cable distances.
So I’m going to show you now what happens when you move a sail away or you move a sail around seeing as I have one, I’ll show you how it works.
So right now I have the sail mapped up pretty much that it’ll attach to those two posts and it will go fine.
Now some people ask me or often ask me, what happens if I move my sail around or can I attach to other spots?
Now I’m going to show you what happens when you move a sail away from a building or away from a contact point, your contact points or your sail points will start to spread out and I’ll show you what I mean.
Okay so you’ll see from the previous placement of this sail, I have it out about 10 feet from the house, but what it’s done is, is it’s made my sail contact, or my connection points, move.
So now I have a point that actually doesn’t go anywhere, I have to put a post up.
If I move it closer to the house like it was, obviously the points are closer and thus, I can attach to the post.
So you must consider that when you’re moving your sail around or figuring out how you’re going to map it out, that if you move it away from buildings or posts, that the attachment points will change as well.
So ideally as we talk about attaching to your contact points, you want to tension down the diagonal of the sail or across, bisect the sail, so you have to be tensioning in the right direction.
If the sail is laid out like this and it naturally wants to be pointed at that post, you can’t necessarily move it over here because the sail will not tension properly, it won’t lay flat. So in order to tension sail properly, you have to make sure that the sail lines up with your connection posts exactly as it should be, as opposed to trying to move the sail to other connection points, it will not flatten out properly.
One of the questions we often get asked as well is what attachment points to use or what do we have to attach to in order to support the sail?
Every application is different in that the size of sail requires a different size of post, but for most residential applications, for most pre-cut sails that are available on our website, you can use a 6×6 wood post or a minimum 4 to 5 inch steel post.
We’re happy to help you in that area and you can always call us and ask us if you have some specific questions but that’s a standard base for what to consider.
You want to have a fairly substantial structure in order to handle the loads because you want to be able to tension the sail down properly and have the wind not affect it and have it be safe.
So in attaching to say a wooden post, this is an all thread, sorry a hook eye, a threaded hook eye, so you would just screw this into your post, like this, and then your sail becomes, then you attach to that.
If it’s a big post and you want to go through it or it’s a steel post, you can use the through bolt like this where you have a nut and you put it on the backside and you attach to this hook.
So it’s fairly simple, if it’s wood, use a threaded hook eye, if it’s metal or you want to go through a wooden post, you can use a long threaded bolt.
Okay a lot of the time you’re not attaching to a post or you’re not attaching, you’re attached to say stone or an existing block wall.
What we would do is epoxy or drill a hole in this, and then use epoxy and use a threaded hook eye or all thread rod, but in most residential cases you’re going to use a threaded hook eye.
You put it in the hole you’ve drilled, and epoxy it in there, let it dry and that’s a solid connection point. You have to make sure that you’re getting more than just the brick façade.
Behind your brick façade may be blocks or wood, you have to make sure you go into something substantial.
The brick itself or the stone itself, especially this type of stone where it’s just on the face, is probably not going to be strong enough to hold the load, so you’ll need to get into something stronger behind, which is why you have the length here.
We’ve talked about attaching to a post, we’ve talked a bit about attaching to a brick façade or a stone façade or a concrete wall, we’re going to talk a little bit about attaching to your house, if you’ve just got siding. This is just wood siding, so this is not really strong enough to attach to.
If you managed to attach to a corner, you might get some stud or some studs behind which is strong enough.
Certainly the siding is not going to be strong enough for your standard shade sail application. If you’re say going over a window, which often people do, there’s a header above most windows, you want to make sure you get into a header as opposed to just the fascia of your building, that will give you the strength you need to support the shade sail.
Okay so we talked a bit about how we attach to the posts or to the house or anything you’re attaching to.
This is your connection point. What we do now is we get into the hardware. This is a turnbuckle. This turnbuckle is used for final tensioning. This is key because you need to be able to tension to sail down as much as possible in order for it to avoid flapping in the breeze and again for safety.
So what you do is you put your sail up, as the other video shows with pulley systems, and then you finally tension it with the D shackle and turnbuckle like we showed.
So your D shackle goes onto the corner of your sail, and then goes through here, your turnbuckle goes like that, and then it attaches of course to what you’re attached to your house or your post.
You’ve seen the original combination of a turnbuckle and a D shackle, we’ve added the opportunity of a quick clip in order for ease of take down and put up. So add the quick clip for ease to take down in the wintertime, look for them online, they’re there with our hardware.
We often get asked what hardware do I require for a triangle or for a square? In most applications what’s required is for a triangle, one turnbuckle, four D shackles, and for a square or rectangle or four-sided shape, 2 turnbuckles and 6 D shackles. It allows for easy take down and put up and gives you all the hardware that you’ll need to fly your sail.
With your pre-cut sail order you’ll get a full set of instructions which tells you exactly how to layout your sail and exactly how to tension it and how to fly it.
One of the things we emphasize is quality and durability and that’s what we stand by. We probably make these sails here in Canada so we are allowed to control the quality, the timing, so we stand by that ability to offer that. And one of the things we do and we’ve learned over the years, 13 years in businesses is, we like to go a little thicker on our webbed edge, it gives us more strength and an ability to tension the sail.
It also looks better so you’re going to get a very durable quality sail that will last a long time, as I say 10 to 15 years, maybe a lifetime if you put it away for the winter as opposed to storage, Again with the hardware it’s also a quality stainless steel D ring, as is all our other hardware, all marine grade stainless steel which will not fail either.
There are three main types of sails. Our residential pre-cut sails, which all the sizes are on our website which we talked about. There is also Coogee sails and and Noosa custom sails. Coogee custom sails are a sail that you just ask us to cut exactly to fit your area. You might have an odd sized sail and we can cut it to fit no problem.
A Noosa custom sail is a step above. We will cut the sail as well to fit, but we’ll also add cable in the perimeter, which is a stainless steel cable that goes all the way around the perimeter. It’s just a better way to tension the sail and spread the tensioning throughout the whole sail, it’s sort of the elite version of a custom sail.
We offer them all, please check out our website and order through the website.