materials are shade sails made from?
Our shade sails are fabricated from premium high grade extra heavy duty
cloth offering up to 95% UV protection which has been interlock seamed
with twin lock stitching. All sail shade edges are hemmed with heavy
duty UV stabalised webbing and all corners on sails larger than 25m2
are reinforced. Our sails incorporate: higher
rated UV blocking, choice
of quality fabrics- shade mesh, canvas, shade cloth, architectual grade
corner rings and perimeter webbing, double
row of locking stitch, stainless
steel 'D' rings
are common problems with shade sails?
Before buying, measure the shade area first and identify possible fixing
points - a common error is to buy a Ready Made Sail, get it home and
find it will not match up with available fixing points! Make sure the
sail has been manufactured to quality standards, has the correct fittings
and installation. Avoid poor quality weave canvas which can hang limp
and absorb water. Sails manufactured with single line or poor chain
stitching as this can come undone when under tension or stress.
Too many seams can split under tension.
Corner rings not made of galvanised steel can rust and discolour surrounding
that is not water resistant or poor quality weave can hang limp and
is the best way to design shade sails?
Sails work best when they are: under enough tension
to give curvature, are not on a level plane and are 'twisted' for stability.
It is important to consider the slope of the fabric to ensure good shedding
The shade sail is essentially pulled taut and twisted so one axis is
convex and the other axis concave.
The best designs we have found are shade sails that have a
significant difference with one corner much higher than the other. This
gives a striking look. Overlapping shade sails or a series of sails
can also give a dramatic sculptural look.
do I measure the shade area?
where shade is wanted and measure the sides and diagonals of this whole
area. Consider the height of the sun and direction during the summer
period. Cconsider the size of the sail, location of any barbecue's or
tree branches that may also chafe or affect the sail. To help visualize
the sail you can use a string stretched between planned attachment points.
A scale drawing of the area to be shaded can be useful. Rotate scale
drawings of the actual shade to get an idea of actual layout. Straight
lines drawn through the centre or corners will give the fixing points.
Tensioned sails have curved or concave edges and the depth of the curve
is about 10%. in from the outer of the sail. This curvature and the
use of fixings means that the sail covers a smaller area.
does curvature affect the sail?
The fabric needs curvature to maintain stability and it will be pulled
taut and slightly twisted to achieve this.
This curvature plus the sail not being on one level plane - will make
the sail more stable in winds. A flat sail will not perform properly
and can hold water. The most common method is to have each pair of diagonally
opposite corners at sgnificantly different heights. Shapes that have
little curvature and tension will deform under load and become unstable
and move about.
Finally ensure that any proposed fixing points are strong enough
to bear the local wind conditions. If unsure consult a local engineer.
Always ensure that the existing structure or building can support the
load of a sail under poor weather conditions. A sail under heavy wind
can put considerable strain on the building. A local engineer or qualified
builder can verify that the building can withstand such a load. Galvanised
steel will avoid rust and is a better solution for fixing shade to than
wood.Wooden posts can warp which place the sail out of alignment and
can rot over time. If the post moves in its foundations as it is under
strain it is usually hard to correct at a later stage. If the post moves
during the initial construction of the sail it will be extremely difficult
to tension the sail properly at the outset. A good way to look at the
foundation depths is 1/3 of the post underground. Most sails sit 2.5m
high so the post needs to be just over 1/3 again longer than this.
to download a Typical Post Structure.
What colours are available?
We have a wide range of colours available. Click
here to see the full colour range and our fixing range.
Can I buy shade sail fixings?
We also have a comprehensive range of standard
fixings. Turnbuckles for tensioning and eye and 'D' rings
for fixing to posts, walls etc.
What is the
lead time ?
DIY sails can be made to your exact specification within a few weeks.
We have a faxback
form containing most of the details we need for us to be able to
quote. Fully designed and installed shade sails take longer as there
are several stages to the project. Typically the project stages include:
initial drawing or architectural plans, site visit, final plan, holes
dug (if needed) and concreted, poles installed, final fixing points
measured, sail installed and tensioned.
These installation instructions are offered as a courtesy to customer
to help with their shade projects. We can only provide a very general
summary of points to consider. The information in this website is offered
only as a highly generalized summary of shades we have designed and
installed in the past. It is impossible for us to know individual situations
such as the soil, wind condition and exposure for each design andiinstallation.
We therefore cannot be responsible or liable for any design issues or
iinstallation problems arising from reference to these installation
suggestions. If an area is subject to storms and cyclones it is recommended
that the membranes be removed when such a warning is made.