Sail CanopiesSail canopies, also interchangeably called shade sails and shade sail canopies, have become one of the best values for backyard and patio remodelers. They require less installation time than permanent awnings or overhangs and are more affordable than fixed-frame canopies. Growing more popular by the year, sail canopies still bring a modern, fashion-forward accent to their surroundings.

Many Shapes and Sizes

Sail canopies are available in a variety of colors and shapes. Traditionally the sail shade is either square or rectangular. Nevertheless, the shape of the triangle – the length of its sides, the angles of its corners – varies, sometimes depending on size. The triangular shape gives the sail shade its name, of course, as mainsails have had a triangular configuration for thousands of years. While the origin of the sail shade canopy itself is lost to history, it’s very possible that its origins are at least as old.

The square canopy, owing to the sail’s non-rigid construction, isn’t a fixed “plate” so much as a sail constructed with four equal sides. Typically, the square shade sail is rigged from its corners, though some models may vary.

Grommet Eyelets And GSM: Sail Canopy Terminology

In many cases, sail shades connect to their mounting brackets by grommet loops in their sides and corners. Grommet loops, or eyelets, are the metal or plastic rings set into fabric. (The most common example is found along the tops of shower curtains.)

GSM stands for grams per square meter, the basic unit of measurement for weighing paper. Many kinds of sail canopies are constructed from polyethylene materials, a kind of plastic polymer known for its light weight and flexibility. The greater the GSM, typically the heavier the sail shade. However, in this case “heavier” often means thicker and better at reflecting sunlight and withstanding elements. Finding the right balance of shade and weight is best left to the buyer’s individual preference.

Look for shade sails that are porous: they allow water to pass through them. This will prevent the sail canopy from sagging as precipitation accumulates across its surface. Standing water atop the canopy can stretch the fabric and, in drastic cases, weaken the mounting hardware.

Purchasing and Installing Sail Canopies

Sail CanopiesThough simple in operation, installing the sail canopy isn’t a task to take lightly. Some instruction manuals estimate setup time to take approximately one hour to complete, though some may take longer, especially if anchoring poles need to be sunk first. Also, the installation process is often a two-person affair.

Most sail shade canopies can be installed using conventional household tools. Be sure to check the canopy’s manual before making your purchase.

Buyers are also encouraged to follow the old adage, “measure twice and cut once.” Though cutting the sail shade won’t be necessary, it’s a good idea to measure the area you want covered before you begin shopping. You can then make a more accurate determination what kind of sail shade shape would best service your needs.

Remember, there is no right or wrong answers except what’s best for your patio, deck, or pool area. Once installed, your sail shade canopy will bring years of stylish, comfortable shelter to you, your guests, and your family.

Undercover Canopies

The 10 x 10 Undercover Canopy

Undercover’s new series of canopies and tents solve some of the most common complaints about portable shelters and covers. With advance construction and easy setup, they bring the ease and convenience of popup shelters finally within reach.

Design and Construction Bring Versatility

The Undercover Canopy’s aluminum frame marks an important change in canopy and tent availability. Aluminum frames are a full 50 percent lighter than traditional steel frames. Because they’re so lightweight, transporting them becomes much, much easier. A sophisticated “honeycomb” construction adds to their durability, too. As the name implies, the honeycomb design adds reinforced durability for years of sturdy use.

And with greater ease of use comes greater versatility. Because the Undercover Canopy is usable by a wider variety of people, it also becomes suitable to a wider variety of functions. Undercover Canopies can be used for a variety of purposes, including weddings and professional exhibitions. They can also be used for team meetings and competitions, and even uses around the home and backyard.

The canopies are available in a range of sizes varying from small personal tents to large-scale professional models. Sizes and specifications vary, but all feature the same rugged components and durable construction.

Quick Setup Saves Time, Effort

Undercover Canopies

A 10 x 10 Undercover Canopy with sidewalls

Undercover Canopies assemble in minutes, and only need one person to set them up. (See the video below.) Beside the lightweight materials, these tents feature rapidly telescoping legs, similar to a camera tripod. The legs expand outward, lock into place, and the tent is ready for use.

Taking the tent down is also simple. The pinch-proof releases make sure the legs retract again without inconvenience.

No more confusion, snipped fingertips or frustration at setting up the tent. No more asking strangers for help or feeling the embarrassment of having one leg collapse and jilt the tent to one side. Just extend the legs until they lock, stretch out the frame and the canopy is ready to use.

Canopy Tarps Bring The Best In Shelter, Coverage

A sturdy frame still wouldn’t mean much without a reliable tarp cover. The Undercover Canopy tarp is built from reinforced polyester, and many models feature tarps that are treated for added weather protection. Some of the larger models include tarps rated to 600 Denier, meaning they provide a truly formidable degree of weather resistance.

Undercover Canopies sometimes come with helpful accessories, too. These can include weightbags to more firmly anchor the canopy in place. They may also include travel bags to ease transport.The most popular, however, is likely the vinyl sidewalls that enclose the canopy’s interior.