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To Pump Or Not To Pump (With Apologies To Shakespeare)


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I have just bought a new caravan only to find my 12 month old Ventura Cadet does not fit! So now, having pondered about air awnings before buying the Cadet, I am back to thinking about having an inflatable awning to replace this. I need a 330 or 350 to site comfortably - from LH side of lounge to RH side of 'bedroom' so I need to sell the Cadet and weigh up whether to have a Marlin or Kampa / Outdoor Revolution 350 air. Having had a few construction 'discussions' with the other half the air awnings are tempting but, obviously, they will not take the same wear and tear as the Marlin. So I throw this to the great caravanning community to throw their twopenneth in and give me some direction please

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I was looking at ads for awnings and was surprised to see a handful of inflateables

for sale, most "used once" or "used twice" and only a few pounds off the original price.

Isabella, Ventura, and other top quality awnings several years old and still commanding

good s/h prices.

The pneumatic tubes seem easy to replace and I have seen a new Vango take gusts of

(reportedly) 60mph and torrential rain, until the pegs started to pull out. I will admit that

I hardly gave them a glance when I bought a Dorema awning :D

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Not familiar with marlin but I can say from experience that the kampa air has been excellent this season.


We have a kampa rally air pro 390 - the pro has the thicker 300d material, ours has been up for a total of 5 months this year, I have never had to top it up nor had any issues with leaks or had to replace tubes.


For me the electric pump was worth the extra few bob although the smaller air awning is quite a bit easier to pump up.


It took 2 wettings to seal all the stitching but has been good in heavy weather since it sealed.


It has been up in met office reported gusts of over 50mph with no issues, it tends to flex slightly which I guess is an advantage over a rigid frame?


It has suffered some UV damage because it has been used so much in this glorious weather but you can't complain about the sunshine!

Edited by sleepyfolk
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I have a Kampa air 390, used about 8 times since Easter 2013, not for sale . I would never go back to a normal awning, too much hassle . Last year it stood up to snow, rain & very very strong winds . Not including pegging (that has to be done on every awning and takes as long as it takes) putting the air awning up 15mins, taking it down, about 5 mins (not including folding and putting into the back, again is easy as the bag is massive )

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When we was looking for an inflatable awning to replace our traditional awning we narrowed our search down to the Vango Varkala, the Vango senna and the Kampa rally air 390.

our biggest dilemma was choosing between the Vango and the Kampa, both good companies

The main selling point with the Kampa is that all of the air poles are interconnected so you inflate from one point and all of the beams inflate.

Now whilst the Kampa is a quicker system to inflate, i felt there are more areas to fail due to all of the interconnecting pipes and valves

So we had now narrowed it down to the 2 Vango awnings.

We visited a dealer who had both erected and decide on the Varkala firstly because of the stronger 420D ripstop material as opposed to the 150D material of the Senna, and secondly standing inside it was a lot brighter.

We have been away with it 4 times now and i can't fault it, post-67251-0-67924000-1406563788_thumb.jpg

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I think its all down to personal choice because i have spoken to people with the kampa and the tango and they both gave rave reviews

it you check out my gallery i have post a few more pics of the awning in action.

Keeps us all updated on your decision

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