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Old 02-26-2014, 12:25 PM   #1
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Restringing pleated day/night shades

Has anyone attempted to restring the shades on a Tiffin unit? If so is there any tips you can provide to make the job less stressful?
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Old 02-26-2014, 12:57 PM   #2
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Not sure which the Tiffin uses but if you go to www.fixmyblinds.com they have several instructional videos. Also, they are the only place I found that has different colors if cord to match what you have.

2 tips,

1, cut your strings a little longer than you think they should be. It's easier to shorten them later!

2. Don't just get strings for the 1 blind that broke! If I remember right a 50 foot length was $17.95. 300 feet was less than twice that at $30.95. I found out the hard way, when 1 is worn and breaks the rest aren't far behind!

3. If you buy from them, spend the $1 on the funky little wire stringing tool. It is well worth it!

Good luck!
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Old 02-26-2014, 01:35 PM   #3
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I would not guarantee that my '94 Pace Arrow has the same style shade but they are pleated, day/night shades. I've restrung most of them and it is pretty straightforward.

I purchased the string at a fabric store. Not regular string but string specific to the application. Very inexpensive.

I've done all my restringing with the shade mostly collapsed/closed. The only need to "open" it is to get the middle slide out.

Each shade has two "bottom" pieces. Remove the plastic end caps and slide these off. You then have access to the strings ends. I remove only one at a time (day or night section). When you slide them back on, they tend to snag so go slow and don't tear the fabric.

I used a fairly long needle to run the new string thru. Pulled the old string out, looped new string thru the eye, and pushed it up thru. Sometimes a bit of movement of the shade is required to get the existing holes in the fabric lined up.

The rest is pretty obvious. Before trimming the string or remounting the shade, hold it by hand and open/close it. I got the strings in the wrong holes a couple times and that's nice to find sooner rather than later.

After you've done one shade, the next will take all of ten minutes.
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Old 02-26-2014, 01:40 PM   #4
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Easy - Change them over to MCD roller blinds!

But if you're not up for that - then take it out, put it on the bench and re-string it. Nothing rocket science about it....

You can buy a Re-string kit at almost any RV shop, it comes with string & a dvd to watch. Under $20 bucks.


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Old 02-26-2014, 01:49 PM   #5
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Had a couple come apart in our coach. Looked at the instructions online but ours didn't come apart that way. Found the name of the company that made them' sent them to them and for $25 each plus shipping they're done.
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Old 02-26-2014, 10:22 PM   #6
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shades

There was a good article in Tiffins "Roughing it Smoothy", volume 8,
number 1, the past issues are on tiffins websight, there shades are strung a little different than most shades, it is not that hard after the first one, plan on having a work surface a least twice as long as the longest shade to make it easy. Good luck. You might also look to "tiffinrvnetworkl" for additional info.
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Old 02-27-2014, 10:23 AM   #7
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Easy: called Tiffin, gave them year/make/model, told them what window, they sent new ones. We have replaced them all over the last year. We have a 2007 40 ft Phaeton. We took the first ones down and it was not worth the effort to re-string. Prices weren't bad, but we have always hated the design. We should have put in a different brand in, we had no idea they wold all brake in one year !
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Old 02-27-2014, 02:04 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pa Uon View Post
Easy: called Tiffin, gave them year/make/model, told them what window, they sent new ones. We have replaced them all over the last year. We have a 2007 40 ft Phaeton. We took the first ones down and it was not worth the effort to re-string. Prices weren't bad, but we have always hated the design. We should have put in a different brand in, we had no idea they wold all brake in one year !
The problem with that is this is an 05 and the material is no longer available so that shade will not match. Also, Tiffin will restring the existing shade for no charge (at least they did the last two I sent in) but I am leaving on a trip in 2 weeks and not enough time to get it to them and back. Dont want to listen to the boss when she is woke up by lights signing in the window if you know what I mean.
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Old 02-27-2014, 02:09 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rvharry View Post
There was a good article in Tiffins "Roughing it Smoothy", volume 8,
number 1, the past issues are on tiffins websight, there shades are strung a little different than most shades, it is not that hard after the first one, plan on having a work surface a least twice as long as the longest shade to make it easy. Good luck. You might also look to "tiffinrvnetworkl" for additional info.
I noticed they are a little different from others on the web. The strange part is the one I need to perform surgery on is the bedroom slide that is a small 16 1/2" window with 4 strings but only two sets of holes in the material instead of the usual 4 that come with 4 strings so I guess I will see if I can reverse install and learn why. Worse that can happen is I box it up and send it back to Tiffin to restring when I get back from my next trip.
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Old 02-27-2014, 05:26 PM   #10
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I've restrung almost all of ours. Use 50lb synthetic fishing line. But what breaks the most are the round plastic keepers at the bottom. Now go to a fabric store and get some metal sewing machine bobs. Those will never break. But it is a real pain to do the 4 string shades, but it can be done. Also it's easier if you leave the shade attached to the valance and remove the entire assembly.
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Old 02-28-2014, 08:03 AM   #11
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Never bought a restring kit, after many repairs found #150 woven kit string, worked great and had only one or two failures after using it. The culprit in the Tiffin shades that were made locally were the string guides in the aluminum extrusions. Tiffin's were brass eyelets...United Shade in Elkhart who developed the 1st day night shades used a nylon guide. I changed out our Day Nights for United's Roll Shades two years ago haven't had to touch the shades again.
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Old 02-28-2014, 01:22 PM   #12
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I don't have a Tiffin, so I can't speak to the specifics of the way their blinds are strung, but in my experience, one of the "gotchas" with restringing the blinds is the tendency to pull the cord too tight when finishing the assembly... so I definitely concur with the recommendation of leaving the cord a bit longer than you think you're going to need.

You want the cord to be tight enough to keep the blinds from sliding down on their own, but not much tighter than that. The increased tension on the cords through all the twists & turns of the blind causes additional wear and tear, which just leads to them failing sooner. Aim to keep them a bit looser and they may last longer.

Plus, you can always tighten them up later if they seem too loose... but if you cut the cord too short, you can't lengthen it to loosen them if they're too tight.

If it helps at all, attached is a re-stringing diagram for Newmar's 4-string day/night blinds. Tiffin's blinds are most likely string differently... but you might be able to re-string them this same way and still have them work.

Best of luck!
Attached Files
File Type: pdf newmar-blind-restringing-4-string.pdf (47.5 KB, 103 views)
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Old 03-02-2014, 09:51 AM   #13
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Our problem now is usually one string (after replacing the shade and putting the valence back up) is making the tension on the strings even. If one is tighter than the other they are crocked and that drives my wife crazy !
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Old 03-09-2014, 11:05 AM   #14
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Our last 5th wheel had those shades, hated them, can't recall how many of them we had to restring....when looking recently at newer coaches, if they had pleated shades we just walked out...MCD is the way to go.
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