A-frame Awning/Screen-room Details

For Flagstaff's T-Series

Forest River offers an awning/screen-room combo for Flagstaff's T-Series (and the identical A-Series from Rockwood). The awning attaches to the camper via velcro (attached to the top ridge of the triangular wall piece) and then it becomes sandwiched between the wall and the roof lip when the triangular wall piece is secured to the roof during set up.

T-series/A-frame awning/screen-room combo

We will grudgingly order a T-series awning if someone really wants one but we do not stock this item, do not accept returns for it, and will not install* one no matter how nicely someone asks. If the poles are broken straight out of a brand new awning package, you will need to contact Forest River directly to resolve it. Simply put: we do NOT like or recommend the T-Series awning. Here's why:

  • It's egregiously expensive.
  • It's irritating to set up (the ease and speed of setting up a T-Series camper goes away with this awning).
  • Velcro holds the screen-room to the side of the camper. (The velcro catches dirt, weeds, grass, etc., yellows in sunlight, and doesn't stick to the camper very well--it's aesthetically unpleasing at a minimum.)
  • The awning and screen-room are packaged together (the awning is not sold separately**).
  • The screen-room skirt (the horizontal piece that completes the fourth wall of the screen-room, attaching to the bottom of the camper side-wall and velcro-ing to the awning sides) is made of screen mesh (not rip-stop nylon like the rest of the awning). To us that just screams "cheap".
  • On three separate (new) packages of T-series awnings, the connecting cables holding some of the poles together were broken before they were even removed from their plastic wrapping. This poor quality does not reflect well on Dometic and is not commensurate with the standard we expect from Flagstaff.

To be fair, it was nice of Forest River to ask Dometic to develop some kind of awning for the a-frame campers. Also, the method of attaching the awning to the camper with velcro (velcro that won't be exposed to dirt/sun/etc. like the screen-room velcro, that is) and then securing it between the wall and roof is pretty sweet and works well. However, the cost, exposed velcro, and frustrating pole situation makes this contraption one option we sincerely advise against.

So what are the alternatives?

1. Use a stand-alone awning/screen-room (like an "easy up canopy")

Here are the advantages:

  • The ones we've seen and used set up a LOT faster than the T-series awning/screen.
  • They can be placed anywhere in the campsite. (If the campsite has a picnic table that's anchored to a pad or another area apart from the camper and you want shade over the table, the T-series-attached awning won't help; a free-standing awning would.)
  • They cost a lot less than the T-series awning/screen.
  • They are readily available from places like Sam's Club and Costco.

Click here for an image search of easy-up awning/screen-rooms

One possible drawback to a free-standing awning is that it's not postively attached to the camper. If that is a priority, you could also...

2. Make your own awning

Dometic's method of attaching the awning to the T-series camper is pretty slick (it's the hassle of the pole system (and the price) of the awning/screen-room we disagree with most).

If someone took a piece of rip-stop nylon (or other suitable tarp material), added a strip of velcro to the material, and used a couple poles and guy-lines to hold the awning away from the camper, then the goal of shade and rain protection could be achieved without the terrible pole system and price of Dometic's T-series awning.

Click here for an image search of other a-frame awning ideas

Here's an example from Steve and Adele Williams using their T-series camper:

Flagstaff T-series awning alternative

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*Installation involves adding a bunch of velcro to the camper such that the awning and screen-room can attach to the camper. It's not technically difficult but it's time consuming and, frankly, we get sadder with every piece of velcro we put on knowing that any exposed velcro will soon look terrible and make a new camper look years older than it actually is. (back )

**That makes no difference to us because we wouldn't buy the awning regardless, but some people have asked if they can get the awning by itself so they can have a little shade and rain protection without the extra hassle of the screen-room. Although the screen-room is detachable and could be left at home, the awning by itself still uses an awful pole system. (back )