Whether you’re new to shade sails or a shade sail veteran, you’ll want to know about pulleys! They are such a great alternative to turnbuckles, because they are just so easy. While turnbuckles are very effective hardware for attaching and tensioning your shade sail, it does require some tools, such as a wrench and more importantly a come-along, fiddle-block, or other tensioning device. The latter tools are used to stretch the shade fabric into place but can require multiple people to operate. Due to the 4:1 mechanical advantage of our pulleys, one person can tension the sail without trouble. Check it out!
Did you see that? One minute for a corner where the pulley was attached to the sail. Just imagine how quick the entire install can go! Take a look at our installation resources for more videos about shade sail installation.
Pulleys are good for any install, but they are especially fantastic for those who might want to take their shade sails down occasionally. Generally, shade sails are permanent structures, but if you’d like to take it down at any time of the year, using pulleys is the way to go. Untie the pulley ropes, let the tension out, and detach each pulley from the sail and attachment point. It’s as easy as that! Easy up, easy down, no problem.
To prevent binding or seizing, it’s always a good idea to lubricate turnbuckles with white lithium grease. It's sometimes a messy process, but always worthwhile. That's not the case with pulleys! Pulleys are ready to go immediately, without grease of any kind. The only tool you’ll need is an ordinary wrench to tighten the pin of the d-shackle attaching the pulley to the sail and attachment points.
It’s easy to see that pulleys are the best for a quick shade sail install. They’re simple to attach and the 4:1 system results in tensioning so easy, it’s done by hand! The loose rope is simply tied off to a cleat, so it can be easily tightened further at anytime. Pulleys don’t require any extra tools or grease, and are ready to use out of the box. If you’re looking to install a shade sail for yourself, you’ll want to look into pulleys first! When it comes to simplicity and functionality, they can’t be beat!