When Moon Fab pitched us on its MoonShade portable awning, I figured, I own two and everybody has at least one. What’s novel about this new one? When the awning arrived, was I surprised and intrigued!
MoonShade approaches at the need for shade interestingly, making an awning that extends from your vehicle. Forget your four-foot-long, 50-pound canopy bags. The 9’ x 7’ unit comes in a 30” x 8” x 5” bag and weighs a scant 9.5 pounds. It’s perfect for grabbing and throwing in the vehicle, or even storing it there.
Opening up the bag, all the poles and bits are easy to figure out. The poles are made of aluminum—lighter and more durable than the fiberglass poles you find in lesser units. Rubber feet on the uprights mean they’ll stay in place on rock or asphalt, and all the other ends are neatly done with aluminum tips. The cover fabric is sturdy and dark, with some type of reflective coating that blocks the sun very effectively. The MoonShade is a class act of an awning.
As for the attachments to the vehicle, there are two strong magnets with eyehooks. I had concerns about putting magnets on my truck, but Moon Fab thoughtfully put a non-marring layer on the magnet that your vehicle car will appreciate.
If you have glass where you need an anchor Moon Fab also included two suction cup anchors as well. If your vehicle’s roofline is not at least seven feet long, there is a pole to keep the awning taut and still attachable. Moon Fab certainly thought of everything.
I checked my watch and went to work. It took me all of five minutes to put the MoonShade up single-handedly. A regular four-legged awning would have taken longer and with more hassle. I can do it faster with familiarity. The rack on my Chevy Colorado made a perfect spot to attach the awning. I wish Moon Fab had included a pair of Velcro straps or bungees for this scenario, but my kayak attachments up top got me by.
The uprights are extendable from six-feet to 7’ 7”, so you decide the height you want. Even Andre the Giant could walk under the MoonShade awning with three inches to spare. The awning has hooks at all four corners with a smart remote unlatch method for easy hooking/unhooking to the anchors when they are above your reach.
By having your vehicle strategically placed, the awning makes a lot of shade. It’s handy to have access to your vehicle, so you don’t waste shade with your gear bags or coolers. This leaves plenty of room for you and your bike. I also like the fact that by attaching the awning to the vehicle, it does not bang into it like a self-standing unit would in the wind.
The MoonShade does want to take flight in the wind as any awning would, but I used the magnets placed on the bottom edge of my truck to act as anchors. Plus, I ran the provided cords from the corners at the tops of the legs to the anchors, and that tamed it quite nicely. I would love to see Moon Fab add a small vent or cutout at the center of the awning to make it less reactive to the wind.
Take down is quick and, for once in my life, I am easily able to roll everything back up and place it all back in the bag with no pushing or shoving—thank you, Moon Fab, for that detail. I always marvel at the nefarious minds that make a product that cannot be put back into its carry bag.
I went from wondering about another awning to absolutely loving the MoonShade by Moon Fab, with its sound design, along with attention to detail and quality finish. It’s lightweight, yet well built, easy to carry, deploy and repack—count me in to buy a couple at $315 each.
MoonShade Portable Awning Photo Gallery