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Old 09-02-2011, 12:11 PM   #1
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Anybody use the Fiamma leg brackets on the van exterior?

I got them with the kit. I suppose I'll install them, but I'm always loathe to put holes into the sheet metal, so I wanted to know:

1. Do you people have them installed?

2. What mounting points, are they on the sheet metal or did somebody do something creative like mount them on the bumpers, splaying them out a bit?

3. Do you use them when you use the awning?

Please let me know; I'm thinking of walking down there today, drill in hand.

Thanks.

Paul
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Old 09-02-2011, 01:49 PM   #2
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Re: Anybody use the Fiamma leg brackets on the van exterior?

Not sure what you're referring to. I have the Fiamma model 45 (something like that) and there are no brackets for any legs. The awning rolls out and the legs drop to reach the ground. Brackets?
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Old 09-02-2011, 02:09 PM   #3
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Re: Anybody use the Fiamma leg brackets on the van exterior?

i think sportsmobile has a stock pile of these brackets somewhere since no SMB people know what they are, they come with the Fiamma from the factory if you buy it yourself and install. they are brackets that attach to the body that hold the legs of the awning, so you have the option of putting the legs on the floor or the van side. i had them on my westfalia--and all the VW peeps do. i personally never put the legs on the ground since i get tired of the dogs running into them and knocking the awning down (on my old syncro) i dont have my fiamma installed on my current e350 yet, but it is getting body brackets, but i might rig up something stealth-like

here is what he is referring to; http://gowesty.com/ec_view_details.php? ... parent_id=
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Old 09-02-2011, 03:42 PM   #4
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Re: Anybody use the Fiamma leg brackets on the van exterior?

I mounted the leg brackets on my van.


Here is the rear bracket. First it was mounted too low. It may still be too low.

If you use the body brackets, be sure and use the center bar on the awning when you put it out. Otherwise, it is possible for the wind to pickup the awning and since the support legs are solidly against the body, the awing can collapse the springloaded arms as the awning goes straight up. When it does that, it will pull the brackets off the drip rail and the awning will collapse onto the ground. Don't even ask how I know that.

If the legs are on the ground the awning can go and down quite a bit without damage.

I still like the body brackets. The awning is more stable and ants don't crawl up the legs.

Mike
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Old 09-02-2011, 09:11 PM   #5
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Re: Anybody use the Fiamma leg brackets on the van exterior?

Wow, first off, Mike, thanks for that tip about using the rafter with the body brackets. I honestly never would have thought of that, and I doubt I would have used the rafter all the time. In fact, I know it. No, I won't ask how you know that.

I ended up mounting the brackets, but not to the body. I could not do it. So, even though they are off center, they seem to work. I had to re-do one of them because the angle didn't work. That's why you'll see a blob of red Form-A-Gasket on the Aluminess nerf bar step - it's to cover the first hole. Why did I cover the first hole? When I drilled the second set of holes, I discovered that, somehow, my Aluminess nerf bar was holding a lot of water. How it got in, I don't know, but I drilled a drain hole in the bottom of each one. Not too big, but something to let the water out.

Anyway, yes, the brackets came with the awning from Fiamma, as did the little crank handle holders and rafter holders. They really do include everything. I did buy the "Rafter Pro," which is curved to allow rain to drain off.

Anyway, I put one on the rear bumper and one on the front nerf step. They seem to work really well. I did not get a picture of the whole thing in action, as I did half during the day and half at night, but I'll include photos of the individual brackets for now. More later.



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Old 09-02-2011, 11:30 PM   #6
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Re: Anybody use the Fiamma leg brackets on the van exterior?

I followed Mike's lesson learned and mounted above the curve. After you get over punching the holes It's great.





You still cannot retract the awning all the way with the feet in, however you can easily collapse it until the support bar is fully collapsed.
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Old 09-03-2011, 08:54 AM   #7
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Re: Anybody use the Fiamma leg brackets on the van exterior?

If you are going to attach the leg brackets to the body, try to find the brackets as shown in the post by Ford_6L as opposed to the ones shown On the Nomadcat post. In my experience, the cast aluminum brackets fill with dust and are almost impossible to slide up and down, while the others with the little sliding bar let the crud out and work better.
I made a set just like the ones with the sliding bar except that they have a removable push-pin and they seem to work the best.
A friend, and fellow Forumite, has the aluminum ones and they can be a major pain in the butt when full of dust.
Just my $.02
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In any case use the center bar...
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Old 09-03-2011, 02:10 PM   #8
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Re: Anybody use the Fiamma leg brackets on the van exterior?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skywagon
If you are going to attach the leg brackets to the body, try to find the brackets as shown in the post by Ford_6L as opposed to the ones shown On the Nomadcat post. In my experience, the cast aluminum brackets fill with dust and are almost impossible to slide up and down, while the others with the little sliding bar let the crud out and work better.
The above is precisely what happened to the stock aluminum fiama brackets on our van within the first 6 months. One of the brackets was so gummed up it would not lift and actually broke off. Thankfully Van Specialties (who installed our F45 in December of 2010) swapped out the alum brackets for the white painted steel brackets.



Also as a note of use for our rig we NEVER leave the awning unattended. I will open it up for a particular use (in non-windy conditions only) then roll it back up as the winds are unpredictable in the river-waterway areas we frequent. Also i witnessed an awning ripped off during the night when high winds hit, so we never leave it up at night. Call me paranoid but i like our van in one piece and it's a quick up/down and not an issue for us.

On leg-on-van vs leg-on-ground, i will put them on the white-painted brackets if utilizing it during a quick meal or chill time. IF we are really relaxing and going to be in camp for several hours i will put them on the ground and stake'em. And as others noted, use of center bar is a nice help.

Our brackets were professionally installed at about waist height and works great from our 24" bubble top with F45 mounted about 12" above drip rail.

best wishes on the build,
Thom
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Old 09-03-2011, 10:56 PM   #9
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Re: Anybody use the Fiamma leg brackets on the van exterior?

Had to poke around, but finally found a pair of the brackets you guys mentioned and ordered them for some fall day project. I'm always grateful for the guys at GoWesty.
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Old 09-13-2011, 09:55 AM   #10
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Re: Anybody use the Fiamma leg brackets on the van exterior?

Okay, I got the older brackets today and put them where I had put the newer-style ones. I have a similar problem with both on the front bracket in that the angle is a little harsh and the leg foot really doesn't fit well. I was thinking of just angling it a bit less with a couple of washers.

I was also thinking of punching through the sheet metal, as Jage says, but I guess the only way to do that is to lose the use of the front passenger door. I suppose I may go with that. We shall see. I'm going to pack up the drill again and head back down to the van.
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