It's been a while since my last blog entry - and that's because there hasn't been a whole lot going on. We spent 9 nights in Sparks, Nevada at Sparks Marina RV Park. There is a paved 2 mile walking path around Sparks Marina Park Pond that Travis, Suzanne and I walked daily (sometimes twice). The walking path is about a quarter mile from the RV park so the entire loop actually totaled 2.5 miles.
We had some windy conditions a couple days into our stay with gusts in the 30mph range. I had retracted the full slide during the worst of it and deployed it only 6 inches or so after gust warnings ended and the wind had abated. Unfortunately the forecast was a bit off and a couple hours after the wind gust warning was lifted - back came the wind. It wasn't as bad as before so I left the slide in its semi-deployed state...big mistake. A sudden, very strong gust billowed the 35 foot vinyl slide topper. What followed was the cringe-worthy, unmistakable sound of the roller tube flexing and disengaging from the end caps and the inner spring violently becoming 'unsprung'. I immediately went out to survey the situation where I met our neighbor, who had come outside thinking a window had shattered.
The next morning Suzanne helped me remove the vinyl topper from its tracks. We folded it up and placed it in the back of the Traverse then I went back up on the roof and spent the next hour or so getting the roller tube back in its end caps.
There are three retainer mechanisms mounted along the length of the topper housing. I bought some 1/2" PVC air hose at Lowe's, cut twelve 2" sections and drove them onto the retainer rollers - thus increasing their diameter. My hope is that the modification with prevent the roller tube from slipping out of position in moderately high winds. I've had this happen three times now - and it shouldn't be happening. Not in winds of this velocity.