Textile all-weather canopies
sunDECK canopies are pre-tensioned large-span structures which serve as canopy systems on the outer decks of large yachts to protect the owners, guests and crew against weather and direct sunlight.
Unlike our sunFLIP awnings, sunDECK canopies are designed for permanent use in all weather conditions arising around the world, meaning that they never have to be removed or stored.
To permanently withstand these stresses, they must be extremely strong. We therefore design sunDECK systems as standard to weather storms with wind speeds of up to 100 kn = 185 km/h without any problems. By way of comparison, this equates to some 50 % more than Force 12 on the Beaufort scale. sunDECK sun awnings are therefore easily able to withstand the stresses of a category 2 hurricane.
sunDECK canopies are even capable of withstanding Arctic and Antarctic conditions, provided we have designed them explicitly for that purpose. However, we do not offer ice class as a standard specification, because the accumulation of ice on deck means that we are dealing with a significantly higher load category than pure wind loads – and the Arctic/Antarctic continents are certainly not standard areas of navigation for yachts (although they are becoming increasingly popular).
The layout and construction of sunDECK structures are defined for each individual case and are based on the technical and architectural/stylistic wishes or requirements of our clients.
Unlike sunFLIP sun awnings, sunDECK structures have such a solid design, thanks to their high load-bearing capacity, that it is not a simple procedure to “get the canvas down quickly”. This is solely a result of their size and, under normal circumstances, even high-tech construction materials do not really make a difference here. Our smallest sunDECK awning to date has a surface area of around 12 sqm, whereas our largest single piece sunDECK awning covers some 400 sqm. The pure membrane weight without the load-bearing structure can correspondingly vary between 20 kg and 500 kg.
The material selected for the components depends on the application:
Load-bearing structures: polished, brushed or blasted stainless steel, glass or carbon composite structure either coloured or visible carbon fabric with clear varnish, sometimes steel or aluminium, then galvanised, varnished or powder coated.
Hardware and rigging components: stainless steel, composite laminate, synthetic fibre rigging.
Membranes: sunDECK membranes are produced from highly-durable, weather and UV-resistant material. Our comprehensive range offers our customers a wide variety of qualities and weights. sunDECK membranes are designed for a service life of between 5 and 15 years, according to the individual conditions of use.
Our membranes demonstrate their outstanding characteristics – extraordinary load-bearing capacity and very low material stretching, even under heavy loads, together with extremely low rates of shrinkage – even though they are constantly exposed to sunlight and both good and bad weather conditions.
For example, Précontraint, one of the materials we most frequently use for membranes, is guaranteed by the manufacturer to withstand UV radiation for 10 years.
For every permanently installed textile tensile membrane, reliable drainage that works under all conditions is an absolute must. Any risk of a water pocket accumulating on the membrane would jeopardise the existence of the entire system. In the best case, it would significantly shorten its service life. In the worst case scenario, the system could even destroy itself by stretching under the increasing weight of each puddle of water.
Our state-of-the-art textile engineering analyzes the behaviour of water accumulating on the membrane for all kinds of load scenarios, thereby preventing the risk of water pockets forming with absolute certainty.
The entire system layout is optimised, taking aspects of this kind into consideration. The image on the left, for example, shows a hidden drainage channel, which we have integrated into the external end profile of a canopy, thereby avoiding the need for drip edges in the guest area.
The standard finish for stainless steel parts on super yachts is a polished, high-gloss mirror finish. A perfect appearance requires a material quality of 1.4404 (316L).
We operate in accordance with the so-called highest yacht standard. This means that even welds are fully ground flush and polished. The quality of our hand-polished finish vastly outperforms electro-polished surfaces.
Our service encompasses system responsibility combined with a turnkey package:
Nowadays there is a wide range of technical textiles from all over the world, many of which are suitable for use as awnings. Depending on the application and customer requirements, we use different textiles for sunDECK awnings and the customer can choose his awning’s style, colour, texture, porosity, weight, etc. Initially, we make a distinction between porous and non-porous materials. There are classic product lines, more modern looking ones, and pure high-tech fabrics as well.
One special feature with Reckmann awnings is that we have acquired a great deal of knowledge in the area of textile engineering over 15 years of product developments in the area of awnings.
Textile engineering is the design of two- three-dimensional pre-tensioned large surface structures using the latest computer technology. This science delves far deeper into the shape and stability behaviour of three-dimensional tensioned awnings, exceeding the knowledge of classic sail makers.
At Reckmann, each awning system is designed and constructed with the aid of such technology. As a result, we produce perfectly executed overall system solutions which offer particularly high capabilities in terms of optimal stability, durability and performance.
To configure SAILTEC Awning membranes we developed a long partnership with specialist sail makers, and their expertise is a crucial input to the sail configuration. The details make the difference. Check out our awnings closely. You will discover many elaborate details:
In sunDECK product range, the membranes are usually configured with high frequency welding. The incorporation of the corner fittings is done according to premium craftmanship quality. The orientation of the corner fittings is always done accurately - as it is not based on the feeling of a sailmaker, but comes as a quantified result from our textile engineering.
And along the way you will discover a masterfully executed handmade craftmanship - smooth and truly straight welds, UV-resistant cloth, nicely incorporated corner reinforcements, integrated tensioning elements meticulously crafted, manually mirror polished corner plates, and much more.
Depending on the light transmittance of the selected material the area under an open membrane presents itself in a particularly pleasant light.
Precontraint textiles as closed materials, however, are available in higher weights and thus extremely high tensile strength, dimensionally stable and waterproof.
Both groups have an excellent resistance to ultraviolet radiation and dirt particles in the air.
Closed membranes made for example from Precontraint® show comparable stretching in warp and filling and deliver a minimal creep factor over time. The balanced design of the material makes its final installation on board much easier; re-stressing the membrane is only required in extreme circumstances.