OT: Gazebo Top Help

I recently purchased a gazebo and learned the top isn't very taunt and therefore, holds water on each 8th section (2 per side) after a rain, which you'll see from the outside here >>>> http://www.flickr.com/photos/18223943@N06/9388129674/
From the inside you'll see the pockets which are present on all sides. http://www.flickr.com/photos/18223943@N06/9385354431/in/photostream/
I don't want this to start stretching the top and permanently leaving it sagging. I'm searching for a suggestion to resolve this issue. Currently, the only solution I can come up with is placing a piece of wood, such as 1/4 plywood, cut to length of each gazebo side and cut to width (or height, if you prefer) where water pools, which is 16". Drill holes at the ends and fasten them with zip ties around the top support bars leading to the center. Otherwise, I try to think of methods to make the top taunt but that could compromise its integrity.
Any suggestions?
Thanks
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On 7/28/2013 3:55 PM, Meanie wrote:

Can you get a refund?
The reason I ask is, if you mess with it you might damage it making it nonreturnable.
Were there any assembly instructions? Are they online anywhere we can look at them? My first thought is to use a shim somewhere to tighten the fabric. But that is probably easier said than done.
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On 7/28/13 4:11 PM, Oren wrote:

I wonder if running some PVC horizontally around the roof would work. Run it under the top. Connect it with some 90º elbows. Bin roof stiffeners are a rough example: http://tinyurl.com/ntymrld They're mounted externally but the idea is the same.
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On 7/28/13 5:30 PM, Oren wrote:

Ah. I see what you mean. Your suggestion is simpler.
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Meanie wrote:

When I had them I had same issues. I managed to put up measure to cut lattice panel pieces instead of your idea. I got tired of taking the top off for winter and putting back on in the spring, Both my gazebos are hard top permanent set up.
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wrote:

It's easy. Find the approximate center point of each of the 8 pools and cut a hole in the fabric there, so the water will drain out. No streching or sagging!
If you're picky and you don't like that, run a strip of woven cloth from each pool to the edge of the roof and a little beyond, so that the cloth will wick up the water and run it off the edge. How to attach 8 wicks? Maybe run a ring or a square around the whole thing, as high as the center of each pool (when the pool is small) or maybe higher if that looks better, and run the 8 wicks from the ring, so that they start in or pass through each pool, then go below the nearest edge. Three maybe 6 inches might be enough. . I think the longer the wick below the edge, the faster it will drain. OTOH, since it will be there when the pool has just begun, it will start draining almost right away and maybe speed won't matter much. It just needs to be the speed of the rain, so maybe speed does matter.
Or if it's only two sections out of 8. maybe run them down from the peak.
For a wick, I think almost any woven cloth will work, but the the drawstring of pajamas might work better than average. (Well pajamas 50 years ago. I haven't worn them in 40 years and I think my last pair was elastic and had no drawstring. Then the string was more than 1/2" wide and it wasn't woven tightly, with air holes that would become water holes. Of course candle wicks seem not to have much in the way of airholes.
BTW, my next door neighbor left one of thse out during the winter and the snow crushed it, bend the metal parts but I think left the cloth part undamaged. He must have liked it though because he bought another one.
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wrote:

I've had same problem with my last 2 tops. Had 2 gazebos pretty close to yours. My wife pokes it with broom after a rain. Let me know what works for you Those struts are weak to lateral forces and I never wanted to attach any weight to them. They'll sag, and you'll just collect water again. The first gazebo we had there was never a canvas sagging problem, but one year a heavy snow collapsed it, mangling the upper struts and centerpiece hub. Now we take the top down in the late fall.
I just looked at mine. A couple of the middle canvas strut pockets aren't even on the struts. Not sure is the canvas was cut too big, or the struts made too short. Probably badly cut canvas. I always wished they put length adjusters on the end of the struts so you can pull the canvas taut with them. You have to stretch the canvas pockets over the end of the struts, and I've had a number of pockets tear. This is cheap Chinese crap, so I don't worry much about replacing it. We've enjoyed the gazebos, but don't expect many years from them. Here's the solutions I think would work, if you're up to doing them.
1. Fabricate length adjusters for strut ends. You can draw the canvas taut with them. Or shorten the struts with them to accommodate a canvas that is cut too tight. I've bought 2 aftermarket canvasses for 10x10 gazebos. One was tight, leading to torn pocket areas, one was loose. leading to sagging and water pockets. The 2 obvious methods for adjusters are screw ends or clamping. Never thought farther than that, except that I could do it with a bit of thought and work.
2. This is easier, and if your canvas pockets are all on the struts, might do it. No big loss if doesn't work. If all my pockets were on the struts, I'd try it myself. Tie a non-stretching string/cord/wire around the hub, then run it under the sag, and attach it to the top horizontal rail. Do it for every sag that collects water.
3. Sew or clamp a strap to the canvas edge where it most easily eliminates the sag by pulling. You can tie it off to a lower horizontal rail (ugly) or attach a small flower pot or decorative object to the end of the strap.
I've noticed on mine that very little pulling force on the edge will eliminate the sag. I might do this on mine. But poking the water out with a broom handle is working so far. I'm just not too big on worrying about it. Water sags drip through, but we don't sit in the gazebo when it's raining. If you let the water sit long, it'll stain the canvas from collecting dirt, but you get plenty of bird shit on it anyway. Just not something I'm going to worry about.
Funny thing about those gazebos is I paid 80 bucks each for 2 replacement tops over the years. Both were a bit loose. But I only paid about $150 each for the entire gazebo with canvas. Both were tight, and the pockets tore a bit right off. You have to shop around, or you can pay twice as much for the same thing.
Let me know what works for you.
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Can't see what's on top, but I beefed up my canopy with strings in between sections. String will also tend to stretch with moisture. I have not used it in some time, so I have forgot how I secured.
Greg
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Thank you all for the suggestions, which are all good and something I will consider. I may not get to it right away, but I'll post back and let you know what works.
Thanks
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