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Old 11-18-2022, 07:14 PM   #1
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The death of my Fiamma

It was bound to happen some day and feel fortunate I got 16 years of use out of it.

Camped at Agua Verde south of Loreto, BCS, chatting with a local who it turns out half of my van was camped on his newly acquired land (a good guy that I now consider a friend), my buddy happened to be flying his drone and hovering it pointed at camp when a gust came up and the awning went flying. The middle and rear mount came off the gutter but the front stayed put and just bent up.

The main body of the awning ended up with a terrible twist and the rear scissor arm bent the wrong way ripping the aluminum. It was obvious pretty quickly that it was toast. I had a very similar incident with it early last year on another BCS beach but it didn't damage the awning and I was able to remount it solo on the beach (that was a chore).

I was headed to the Loreto land fill with it but passed a recycler south of town and thought I'd see if they would take it since it's mostly aluminum. They were more than happy to take it off my hands and the van now weighs ~75lbs less!

And for your viewing pleasure, here's the link to the video. Awning destruction at about 1:55. The rest of the video just shows how beautiful this place is and why my wife and I keep returning.

https://youtu.be/gm-HKiay8_4

Incidentally, I do have the crank, rafter, and both legs from the awning still if anyone needs them.
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Old 11-18-2022, 07:52 PM   #2
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I feel very conflicted by watching this video, on one hand it looks so idyllic and peaceful, and then the violence of the awning taking off is disturbing, especially as you had it tied and staked down. I guess sand doesn't provide much resistance to an upward pull. Add to that, the impossible odds that the drone was filming you and your van at that exact moment is so improbable.

I'm glad no one was hurt (at least not evident by the video), and it was great to see everybody come running to help you. Any damage to the van body itself?


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Old 11-18-2022, 08:03 PM   #3
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Bummer about the awning. As Herb said, sure hope nothing besides the awning was damaged on the van. However, that camp spot looks so inviting and picturesque I might have to try to convince my wife to try out Baja ourselves.
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Old 11-18-2022, 08:16 PM   #4
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Incredible that was videoed at that moment.
One of our first outings in our van, I had a similar gust hit and raise my awning. Fortunately I was standing right next to it and managed to grab the top before it blew over.
I now use a 60qt Ice chest that I stage between the two front poles. I use a relatively strong rubber bungee cord - hook from the top of the awning pole to the Ice chest handles (one on each side). With all the ice/water & adult beverages the chest keeps the awning poles firmly planted on the ground, and I have easy access to our drinks (chest also works as a convenient table & foot rest).
We find our awning too convenient to do without - I'm sure you'll be looking for a replacement since you looked very content under it at the time.
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Old 11-18-2022, 09:21 PM   #5
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No one was hurt in the destruction of this awning. I had switched to sand stakes that you screw into the sand this trip. They turned out to be insufficient for the awning but worked great for the Porta Privy. After dropping the awning off at the recycler I purchased a 3mx3m and 2mx3m tarp and was able to adequately fashion shade for the rest of the trip.

While I was bummed it got destroyed I also found it comforting that I didn't have to worry about it in the wind any more.

And yes, this is one of our favorite beaches down there. We typically have it all to ourselves.
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Old 11-19-2022, 12:13 AM   #6
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For reference, these are great for staking down porta privys, but not substantial enough for awnings.

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/...0?ie=UTF8&th=1
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61EMiOCOFLL._AC_SL1500_.jpg  
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Old 11-19-2022, 07:22 AM   #7
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Thanks for sharing the beautiful video! Sorry about the mishap. I lost one too many years ago. Perhaps it is a right of passage for going to beautiful places with these things.

I have a couple of beach umbrella 'screws' with much bigger fins than above. I wonder if they would hold an awning in the sand? I'll have to remember to pack them and try this.
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Old 11-19-2022, 09:01 AM   #8
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Ouch......bummer.

.....Perhaps using the mounting brackets for the supports supplied with the awning would mitigate this risk somewhat. I know that most of us like to have the supports vertical in the dirt so that you don't have to duck to walk around them; not sure how well those little brackets hold the supports...
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Old 11-19-2022, 09:46 AM   #9
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That video says it all about what can happen to these awnings in a matter of seconds. We have a Fiamma Tie Down Kit that straps down around the cross bars of the awning that has worked for us but I am not sure that it would have withstood the wind gusts you experienced.
https://www.google.com/aclk?sa=l&ai=...ww8Iqg8&adurl=
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Old 11-19-2022, 01:48 PM   #10
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Video is NLA. Maybe I’m happy I can’t see it.
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