ASK THE MXPERTS: BOUGHT AN AWNING, LOST AN AWNING

The greatest tent stake ever made is the free one in your toolbox.

Dear MXA,

I bought a cheap 10×10 awning at Walmart. It wasn’t fancy, but it did provide shade. Unfortunately, it kept trying to take off. It came with tent stakes, but when I tried to drive them into the ground they twisted into a pretzel. Does anyone make high-quality stakes to hold an awning down?

Nowhere is there harder ground than in the pits in Southern California. The ground in SoCal is baked by 330 days of sun a year, compressed by heavy equipment and composed of crushed rock. The MXA wrecking crew used to hammer its fancy awning stakes into the ground, but they used to get stuck, bend when we pulled them out of the ground, or be forgotten at home. Now we use old screwdrivers. They have hardened steel shanks, easy-to-use handles, and are a dime a dozen in toolboxes all around the pits.

 

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