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Old 09-24-2009, 11:18 AM   #1
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Replacing slidetopper fabric

My A&E slidetopper awnings are two-piece. The outer piece of one has started to rip apart from the inner piece. It is on the very end of the rolled-up fabric and can be seen when the slide is in. There are several sources for the replacement fabric, but I am concerned about replacing the fabric and dealing with the spring on the roller tube. Has anyone done this or can you provide any help?
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Old 09-24-2009, 11:41 AM   #2
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Larry, I 've taken my slide topper off to re-attach it. Mine is not a fabric, but a type of vinyl. On the end of the roller there are holes which I placed a screw driver, with a small shaft, through. Then I was able to unroll the spring mechanism and hold it open with the screwdriver. Then I was able to slide the topper out from the slots which held it in place. The topper was slid from the roof and the slide roller at the same time. Hope this helps.
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Old 09-24-2009, 12:36 PM   #3
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Thanks for the reply.

Did you 1)place the screwdriver in the hole in the roller tube, 2) unroll the slidetopper, and 3)remove the fabric/vinyl, or 1)unroll the slidetopper, 2) place the screwdriver in the hole in the roller tube, and 3) remove the fabric/vinyl?
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Old 09-24-2009, 02:11 PM   #4
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Open your slide. Turn the roller by hand until you come to the end of the fabric. Put some type of pin in each end of the roll to keep it completely extended. There should be a label on the exposed roller that has the information about the topper material. S/N size,etc.
When removing and replacing the topper, it helps to bring the slide in about 3/4 of the way so you can easily reach the part that is attached to the MH while working off a ladder. Remove the topper. Replace with the new topper. Use a few strips of tape to hold the topper in postition, forward aft on the roller. Remove the pins while holding the roller. Release your grip enough to allow the roller to turn and wrap up the excess topper material. Open the slide completely and close it a few times to make sure the topper rolls up evenly. Then you should add screws to keep the topper from moving forward or aft where it is attached to the MH.
I had a neighbor help me. It took 1-1/2 hours. If I did it again it wouldn't take half that long.
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Old 09-24-2009, 03:45 PM   #5
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Very helpful, Tom. Thanks!
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Old 09-24-2009, 04:22 PM   #6
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I replaced the living room topper. It appeared easier to remove and replace it from the front, so I also had to remove the antifurl bar at the front of the roller. It is held on by a few screws.
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Old 09-25-2009, 08:07 AM   #7
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Exclamation

I did both my LR and BR toppers last year. Easy to do and the instructions above are good. If you want some more detailed instructions, go here: Slide Out Awning Replacement Installation Instructions

Just a couple of things I found when doing mine:
1. While it sure can be done with one person, 2 will make it easier and it's more enjoyable to share a beer or two instead of drinking one alone.
2. I used a strap wrench on the cap at the end of the roller to unroll the tube and hold it while I placed a large cotter key in the hole to keep it unrolled while I removed and replaced the fabric.
3. Be aware that the welt (I think that's what it is called) you insert into the grooves is a different size on each side of the fabric. I had my first one I reinstalled reversed and couldn't get one side to start in the groove. I looked at the other side and found it was so small it wouldn't stay in the groove...then a light bulb went off in my head and I was so glad I hadn't called the folks who made mine up to ask them about it.
4. I took my old toppers to a local awning manufacturer and they sewed up new ones for me made out of a much better and heavier vinyl than I could get pre-made...and for about half the money! Might want to at least check out some local place to see if they can do the same for you.


Good Luck with your project. Let us know how it turns out.
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Old 09-25-2009, 08:32 AM   #8
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Sounds like another job well done.
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Old 09-25-2009, 07:03 PM   #9
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You might want to mark the edges of the old topper on the motorhome rail and the roller rail before you remove them and align the new topper with the marks.
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