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Making vinyl windows for our screened porch

Julian

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#22
The project is complete and turned out great. As I went I made slight changes to my process and improved it. For example, initially I was planning on just using grommets and twist ties to hold the sheets together, but I found that I could get male and female snap fasteners to join the sections. This made for a much better seal to keep the air in/out.

We'll see how well it holds up and if it can handle pollen season!
 

Julian

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#23
So far this has worked out great. What I learned today putting it back up again in preparation for our New Year's Eve party is that vinyl shrinks quite a lot in the cold. So the sheets that have been stored in a locker out on the porch are 1-2 inches short when I snap down one end and go to snap down the far end!!! That is some SERIOUS shrinkage!!! So moral of this story....either bring the sheets indoors to warm them up or do this on a WARM day!
 

2kwik4u

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#24
@Julian Checking in to see how your Vinly is holding up.

We now have a 5mo old little boy, and there are times when he will only settle down OUTSIDE. Luckily we have a covered deck, however moving into the cool season here soon, I've been tasked with finding a way to take the chill out of the air, and still let the little one be outside. I won't lie, I think she wants this more for extending our use of the space than for the baby, but it still needs to get done.

Here is our back deck space:
2kwik4u Back Deck.jpg
2kwik4u Back Deck 2.jpg

The second shot shows how the railing looks. The first shot shows the overall deck. The wind primarily flows from left to right in that shot, but sometimes reverses, we rarely get wind head on into the building.

My thought is to take your project and adapt it to my space. I was thinking of putting snaps on the outside of the deck railing, and the "inside" of the upper support beams. This would hopefully give the vinyl a bit of slope to it, so that rain and dew would roll off of it. The lower sections are easy, and will just snap in place on the lower railings. I'm unsure if I should leave the lowest section of the railing from the bottom horizontal piece to the floor open for airflow.

Here's some questions I'm hoping you can help with:
How did you join sections where there wasn't structure? Ihave long open sections on 3 sides that will need to be joined. I'm thinking vertical joints with either zippers or snaps. Any thoughts?
How has the vinyl held up after a few years? Does it handle the "stretching" in the winter time when the temperature swings from the 50's to 10's? You mentioned shrinkage of the vinyl in the cold. Any problems with that?
How strong is this stuff? Can it handle a 15-20mph constant wind? I don't want to have to run out and take it all down because we're expecting a thunderstorm, or snow storm. The hope is to install it in the mid-late fall and leave it up all winter until mid-late spring.
How sit holding up after a few years use? Still look OK? Any fading/cracking/yellowing?

Thanks in advance for the help. This tutorial/how-to/example is pretty awesome!
 

Julian

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#25
Mine in holding up pretty well...still in use! The only parts that are coming apart at the bits at the bottom where it constantly gets wet from splashing water. Here the vinyl is cracking a little in places, and the tape is coming off in parts. I have also used a magic eraser mop to clean the vinyl before I roll it up and put it away. ALWAYS put it away DRY.

I used the same snaps to join the open sections as I did for the attachment to the structure....they make ones that screw in, and ones that can be pressed into the vinyl.

Regarding the stretching, I put it up in warm weather which was a mistake. When I went to put it up in cold weather it was a beast to get the snaps on! So now if I go to put it up when it is cold, I have to turn on all the heaters to warm the vinyl up so I can get the snaps on. Next time I would either leave wiggle room when putting it up in warm weather, or do it when it is cold (latter being preferable).

It holds up well to winds, but we have a TON of trees so will have more protection than you. If I were to do it again, I would make it so that I could roll it up from the bottom and have some loop straps at the top so I could simply store it in place (never take it down). Or make it like those rollup blinds.
 

Trevor Shipman

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#26
@Julian Great project! I have a camper with the cold out tent ends. Most of the tome I enjoy the views of the places we go to so I’ll unzip the tent end, problem is then keep the heat or the AC in. I wanted to put a clear plastic window like you did but haven’t gotten around to it. My question is... the gauge that you used. If you could go back would you go thicker or was 20 perfect? And if you have input on my project, what gauge would you suggest?
 

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Julian

Jetboaters Fleet Admiral
Staff member
Administrator
Messages
12,008
Ratings
9,116 128 3
Points
613
Location
Raleigh, NC 27614
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2016
Boat Model
242X E-Series
Boat Length
24
#27
@Julian Great project! I have a camper with the cold out tent ends. Most of the tome I enjoy the views of the places we go to so I’ll unzip the tent end, problem is then keep the heat or the AC in. I wanted to put a clear plastic window like you did but haven’t gotten around to it. My question is... the gauge that you used. If you could go back would you go thicker or was 20 perfect? And if you have input on my project, what gauge would you suggest?
20 was perfect. I'd use it on any project like this - not so thin that it rips, and no so thick that it weighs too much for the snaps.
 
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