What is a Spear Awning?
A spear point awning is a type of “loose frame” decorative awning with a style inspired by Greek architecture. It is very popular both because of its aesthetics, but also for its functionality. The angled support poles provide a slim profile with no hard corners. This is also very popular on upscale food trailers as it creates shade for customers in line without needing to significantly protrude from the vehicle.
What are the components of a Spear Awning Hardware
There are five main components to a spear awning. We have explained each of them below.
|1/2″ EMT Pipe||1||Head Rod||This is a pipe of either Eletrical Metallic Tubing (EMT) or for larger awnings we recommend Intermediate Metal Conduit (IMC)||This serves as the backbone of the awning.|
|3/4″ Galvenized Pipe||1||Front Bar||This is a steel pipe covered in a protective layer of zinc||This is the crossbar that will be threaded through the front of the awning.|
|1/2″ Galvenized Pipe||2||Struts Used as the Spears||These will be exposed to the elements so it’s importable to have the galvenized pip.||These serve as the supports between the home and the Front Bar.|
|Back Hinge||2||Hinge Attaching Spears to Home||This is the connection between the struts and the home. These need to be securely attached to a stud in the home’s wall.|
|Head Rod Clamp||2+||Clamp Attaching Head Rod to Home||We recommend one clamp on each end along with central clamps each 4′ for all awnings over 6′ feet.|
What determines the quality of a steel awning?
Our researchers have reviewed many products, and they came to believe there are three primary aspects that truly determine the quality. The first is that it uses a quality fabric that has been solution dyed to be stain resistant. Even when the top quality fabric is used, it is important that it be handled correctly during the manufacturing process by ensuring the cut ends are hemmed. We also prefer the fabric to be cut with a “Hot Knife” versus scissors because the latter can lead to raveling. The second most element that controls quality are the pipes that provide the frame. We recommend that you only consider steel pipes and ignore any product that uses aluminum components. The third aspect is the fixtures. You will want quality steel pieces that won’t get damaged from the weather. We include this because we have seen some high-quality kits skimp when it comes to fixtures and while this doesn’t rule them out if you do notice that the connectors feel cheaply made or very light to the touch, we recommend getting heavy duty replacements from your local hardware store or Amazon. In most cases, if you take the fixture to a local hardware store, they will be able to let you know if there is a more heavy duty option.
Designs for the Spear Tip
There are five primary shades for the spearhead, and those are:
- Traditional – This is a blunted spearhead.
- Ball – This looks like a large ball bearing.
- Acorn – This is a combination of Traditional and Ball. It has the shade of the spearhead, but at the tip is a large ball bearing.
- Fleur De Lis – This is the shape of the New Orleans Saints Logo.
- Flat – This is a simple flat end end cap with no decoration.
Because this is rather unique, we were unable to find a video specifically about the creation of it; however, we did discover an amazing video of the “Loose Frame” awning which is general category this product belongs. The primary difference is that the struts would be angled upward and be on the outside of the fabric rather than horizontal and placed an inch inside the front bar.
DIY Spear Awning
While DIY projects can be enjoyable, this is not something we recommend building as a from scratch DIY project. The reason is that individually the components will cost roughly double the amount of buying a kit from a manufacturer. The reason is that the suppliers purchase all the components in volume and receive large discounts. When they bundle the components together, the market forces drive the price down because there are multiple suppliers competing for the sale.
When it comes to buying a dome awning kit, we highly recommend the Awntech New Orleans model through Amazon. We have found the Amazon price to be around 40% cheaper than purchasing through the Awntech site directly. This was the first spear awning kit that we recommended, and we have yet to hear any complaints with it from any of our readers. With that said, if you choose this product and have any issues we’d love to hear from you so that we can update our guide. This product comes with a five-year limited warranty and all the fabric has been solution dyed to prevent fading, discoloration or mildew. The only drawback we have with this product is that it is a fully stationary awning that cannot be simply be retracted before storms.