Making a bed - sensible project?

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tin...@isbd.co.uk

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Aug 12, 2009, 6:48:18 AM8/12/09
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We need a new double bed for a spare room and having looked at what
one can buy I'm wondering if making it myself would be sensible and/or
practical.

We want a 'pine' bed frame anyway so I don't need to use any strange
materials. From what I have seen of an existing pine double bed frame
we already have (and which is fairly close to what we want)
construction is pretty simple. I have a router (two actually) and
other basic woodworking tools and am not too bad at basic joinery.

So, are there any pitfalls? I guess if I 'over engineer' it a bit
compared with the bought one then it should be strong enough. The
only difficult bit as far as I can see is if I want round/turned posts
at the corners, is it possible to buy such things ready made?

Any other comments/ideas?

--
Chris Green

geraldthehamster

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Aug 12, 2009, 6:52:31 AM8/12/09
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On Aug 12, 11:48 am, tinn...@isbd.co.uk wrote:
.  The
> only difficult bit as far as I can see is if I want round/turned posts
> at the corners, is it possible to buy such things ready made?
>
> Any other comments/ideas?

A friend turned a wooden bed frame into a four poster, simply by
attaching newel posts to the tops of the legs.

Regards
Richard

Bob Minchin

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Aug 12, 2009, 6:58:25 AM8/12/09
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The biggest pitfall I can see is buying crap timber from the sheds.
Using quality redwood from a real timber merchant will be much better.
There are a number of sources of really strong assembly fixing for the
corners. You should find a selection of free plans online.
Ease (round over) all edges with your router except near to any joints.
You may be able to adapt staircase parts for your corner posts or cut
octagons from square timber which still gives you flat surfaces for
joints and will look more interesting than plain square timber.
Alternatively there are lots of wood turner hobbyists around who might
turn the posts for you for beer money.

Bob

TheOldFellow

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Aug 12, 2009, 7:32:00 AM8/12/09
to
On 12 Aug 2009 10:48:18 GMT
tin...@isbd.co.uk wrote:

I was about to embark on this when I visited Ikea. I don't think I
could get the wood for the price of their beds. It's also a good place
to go to look at simple designs, structure sizes etc.. Take ear
defenders - they strangle cats in front of a mic instead of using Musak.

R.

Andrew Gabriel

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Aug 12, 2009, 8:25:03 AM8/12/09
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In article <20090812123...@rad1.langside.org.uk>,

TheOldFellow <theold...@gmail.com> writes:
>
> I was about to embark on this when I visited Ikea. I don't think I
> could get the wood for the price of their beds. It's also a good place

IKEA say 10% of Europeans are now conceived on an Ikea bed.
I haven't found out which store has got this bed though.

> to go to look at simple designs, structure sizes etc.. Take ear
> defenders - they strangle cats in front of a mic instead of using Musak.

Ah, perhaps you found the right store?

--
Andrew Gabriel
[email address is not usable -- followup in the newsgroup]

Dave Plowman (News)

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Aug 12, 2009, 9:08:34 AM8/12/09
to
In article <4a829df2$0$31040$bed6...@news.gradwell.net>,

<tin...@isbd.co.uk> wrote:
> We want a 'pine' bed frame anyway so I don't need to use any strange
> materials. From what I have seen of an existing pine double bed frame
> we already have (and which is fairly close to what we want)
> construction is pretty simple. I have a router (two actually) and
> other basic woodworking tools and am not too bad at basic joinery.

> So, are there any pitfalls? I guess if I 'over engineer' it a bit
> compared with the bought one then it should be strong enough. The
> only difficult bit as far as I can see is if I want round/turned posts
> at the corners, is it possible to buy such things ready made?

> Any other comments/ideas?

Unless you already have the materials it will likely cost you more just
for them than buying a like for like ready made one. The same applies to
kitchen unit carcasses etc.

--
*I get enough exercise just pushing my luck.

Dave Plowman da...@davenoise.co.uk London SW
To e-mail, change noise into sound.

John Rumm

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Aug 12, 2009, 9:28:09 AM8/12/09
to
Andrew Gabriel wrote:
> In article <20090812123...@rad1.langside.org.uk>,
> TheOldFellow <theold...@gmail.com> writes:
>> I was about to embark on this when I visited Ikea. I don't think I
>> could get the wood for the price of their beds. It's also a good place
>
> IKEA say 10% of Europeans are now conceived on an Ikea bed.
> I haven't found out which store has got this bed though.

It must be getting soggy by now...

--
Cheers,

John.

/=================================================================\
| Internode Ltd - http://www.internode.co.uk |
|-----------------------------------------------------------------|
| John Rumm - john(at)internode(dot)co(dot)uk |
\=================================================================/

John

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Aug 12, 2009, 9:42:12 AM8/12/09
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"Dave Plowman (News)" <da...@davenoise.co.uk> wrote in message
news:5089abf...@davenoise.co.uk...

I made one in 1975 - it is still in use and had been upgraded from double to
Queen size.

The base is contiboard on its edge - 9" high (x 6 foot long). The sides and
ends are halved / slotted into each other to create a plinth that is smaller
than the mattress size. Dropped into this is a wooden frame to which the
slats are screwed. The frame lifts so that the base can be used for storage
(thinking of fitting a gas strut)


pete

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Aug 12, 2009, 10:44:40 AM8/12/09
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I'd suggest you find a mattress you like first. Buy that, then build
the bed around it. Easier than making the frame to an arbitrary
size, then trying to find one that'll fit.
(plus, visitors can sleep on the mattress while the bedframe is being
built. if you're anything like me, that could take <ahem> a while)

PJ

unread,
Aug 12, 2009, 11:38:39 AM8/12/09
to

> On 12 Aug 2009 10:48:18 GMT, tin...@isbd.co.uk wrote:
<snip>

> I'd suggest you find a mattress you like first. Buy that, then build
> the bed around it. Easier than making the frame to an arbitrary
> size, then trying to find one that'll fit.
> (plus, visitors can sleep on the mattress while the bedframe is being
> built. if you're anything like me, that could take <ahem> a while)

You could ask the visitors if they would mind making their own bed.
IGMC

John

unread,
Aug 12, 2009, 2:30:02 PM8/12/09
to

> I made one in 1975 - it is still in use and had been upgraded from double
> to Queen size.
>
> The base is contiboard on its edge - 9" high (x 6 foot long). The sides
> and ends are halved / slotted into each other to create a plinth that is
> smaller than the mattress size. Dropped into this is a wooden frame to
> which the slats are screwed. The frame lifts so that the base can be used
> for storage (thinking of fitting a gas strut)
>

Meant to say - the slats overhang the plinth by about 10 inches. The plinth
is hardly seen.


tin...@isbd.co.uk

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Aug 12, 2009, 2:53:05 PM8/12/09
to
Bob Minchin <nos...@falseaddress.com> wrote:
> tin...@isbd.co.uk wrote:
> > We need a new double bed for a spare room and having looked at what
> > one can buy I'm wondering if making it myself would be sensible and/or
> > practical.
> >
> > We want a 'pine' bed frame anyway so I don't need to use any strange
> > materials. From what I have seen of an existing pine double bed frame
> > we already have (and which is fairly close to what we want)
> > construction is pretty simple. I have a router (two actually) and
> > other basic woodworking tools and am not too bad at basic joinery.
> >
> > So, are there any pitfalls? I guess if I 'over engineer' it a bit
> > compared with the bought one then it should be strong enough. The
> > only difficult bit as far as I can see is if I want round/turned posts
> > at the corners, is it possible to buy such things ready made?
> >
> > Any other comments/ideas?
> >
> The biggest pitfall I can see is buying crap timber from the sheds.
> Using quality redwood from a real timber merchant will be much better.
> There are a number of sources of really strong assembly fixing for the
> corners. You should find a selection of free plans online.
> Ease (round over) all edges with your router except near to any joints.
> You may be able to adapt staircase parts for your corner posts or cut
> octagons from square timber which still gives you flat surfaces for

That's an idea, thanks.


> joints and will look more interesting than plain square timber.
> Alternatively there are lots of wood turner hobbyists around who might
> turn the posts for you for beer money.
>

--
Chris Green

tin...@isbd.co.uk

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Aug 12, 2009, 2:54:58 PM8/12/09
to
"Dave Plowman (News)" <da...@davenoise.co.uk> wrote:
> In article <4a829df2$0$31040$bed6...@news.gradwell.net>,
> <tin...@isbd.co.uk> wrote:
> > We want a 'pine' bed frame anyway so I don't need to use any strange
> > materials. From what I have seen of an existing pine double bed frame
> > we already have (and which is fairly close to what we want)
> > construction is pretty simple. I have a router (two actually) and
> > other basic woodworking tools and am not too bad at basic joinery.
>
> > So, are there any pitfalls? I guess if I 'over engineer' it a bit
> > compared with the bought one then it should be strong enough. The
> > only difficult bit as far as I can see is if I want round/turned posts
> > at the corners, is it possible to buy such things ready made?
>
> > Any other comments/ideas?
>
> Unless you already have the materials it will likely cost you more just
> for them than buying a like for like ready made one. The same applies to
> kitchen unit carcasses etc.
>
I probablyu have some materials. However I certainly didn't find that
when I did some kitchen refurbishing a few years ago, it amazed me how
much one was charged for what was essentially a few sheets of veneered
chipboard and some connecting hardware.

--
Chris Green

tin...@isbd.co.uk

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Aug 12, 2009, 2:55:46 PM8/12/09
to
pete <no-...@unknown.com> wrote:
> On 12 Aug 2009 10:48:18 GMT, tin...@isbd.co.uk wrote:
> > We need a new double bed for a spare room and having looked at what
> > one can buy I'm wondering if making it myself would be sensible and/or
> > practical.
> >
> > We want a 'pine' bed frame anyway so I don't need to use any strange
> > materials. From what I have seen of an existing pine double bed frame
> > we already have (and which is fairly close to what we want)
> > construction is pretty simple. I have a router (two actually) and
> > other basic woodworking tools and am not too bad at basic joinery.
> >
> > So, are there any pitfalls? I guess if I 'over engineer' it a bit
> > compared with the bought one then it should be strong enough. The
> > only difficult bit as far as I can see is if I want round/turned posts
> > at the corners, is it possible to buy such things ready made?
> >
> > Any other comments/ideas?
> >
> I'd suggest you find a mattress you like first. Buy that, then build
> the bed around it. Easier than making the frame to an arbitrary
> size, then trying to find one that'll fit.

Oh definitely, make a frame to fit a standard mattress.

> (plus, visitors can sleep on the mattress while the bedframe is being
> built. if you're anything like me, that could take <ahem> a while)

--
Chris Green

Tim S

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Aug 12, 2009, 4:32:42 PM8/12/09
to
TheOldFellow <theold...@gmail.com> wibbled:

> I was about to embark on this when I visited Ikea. I don't think I
> could get the wood for the price of their beds. It's also a good place
> to go to look at simple designs, structure sizes etc.. Take ear
> defenders - they strangle cats in front of a mic instead of using Musak.
>
> R.

Ikea can so easily go either way...

I've got a TV stand which is made of inch thick balsa wood. no, that's not
fair. Balsa is stronger. It's solid enough when glued together, but
the "wood" is component wise extremely weak - I broke a bit assembling it
and had to do a repair.

OTOH, I have a fantastic pair of rectangular dining tabled that are solid
edge glued strip wood tops (pine or similar) with a very solid frame and
legs. Those are end to end in my "lab" and make excellent benches for 90
quid each.

Some think Ikea is fancy because it's Scandinavian and scandinavians are
civilised folk with good engineering skills and nice birds.

But if you ask a swede what they think of Ikea, it's considered their
version of MFI.

Cheers

Tim

Cash

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Aug 12, 2009, 4:44:33 PM8/12/09
to

If you're interested, have a read of the 'potted' history of IKEA here:

http://www.ikea.com/ms/en_GB/about_ikea_new/about/history/index.html


Dave Plowman (News)

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Aug 12, 2009, 5:50:29 PM8/12/09
to
In article <4a831002$0$31039$bed6...@news.gradwell.net>,

<tin...@isbd.co.uk> wrote:
> > Unless you already have the materials it will likely cost you more
> > just for them than buying a like for like ready made one. The same
> > applies to kitchen unit carcasses etc.
> >
> I probablyu have some materials. However I certainly didn't find that
> when I did some kitchen refurbishing a few years ago, it amazed me how
> much one was charged for what was essentially a few sheets of veneered
> chipboard and some connecting hardware.

Dunno where you looked, but Wicks basic stuff matches my argument -
against materials bought from them. Plus the fact that it's quite a bit of
work to make them as well. Unless you want a custom size.

--
*A chicken crossing the road is poultry in motion.*

Tony Bryer

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Aug 12, 2009, 7:33:48 PM8/12/09
to
On 12 Aug 2009 10:48:18 GMT wrote :
> We need a new double bed for a spare room and having looked at what
> one can buy I'm wondering if making it myself would be sensible
> and/or practical.

IKEA sell slatted mattress supports in various qualities - buying one
and building your frame around it might be a good compromise.

Except for my desk all the furniture in my new home here in Melbourne
is from IKEA - am very happy with it. Pity though about their poor
stock control (waited weeks for my bed and dining chairs to come in)
and although it's only five miles from here the drive can take 30
minutes.

--
Tony Bryer, 'Software to build on' from Greentram
www.superbeam.co.uk www.superbeam.com www.greentram.com

Dave Starling

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Aug 12, 2009, 7:34:08 PM8/12/09
to
> Ikea can so easily go either way...

Ironically, I was in Lakeside Ikea for about 3 hours this afternoon
trying to buy a double bed frame which had been discontinued and
reduced to £25, but their computer screen showed 14 in stock. Long
story short, I was fobbed off by 3 workers saying that it was
impossible/computer error and that it was all sold out. It was only
talking to someone else who gave a damn that they actually got a
forklift, found item and got it down off the higher shelves. Laziness
or conspiracy to keep the bargains for themselves? Moral is if you
don't get the answer you want, keep talking to someone until you do or
seek out a supervisor! Oh and Ikea is a much saner place if you go
during the week :-)

Anyway, back on topic, the OP might like to know they have the birch
laminated(solid wood) latts for a bed reduced down to £2 from £19
each. 80cm wide so for kingsize bed or 3ft6, but you can trim them
with a chop saw if its a BYO bed.

Dave

David WE Roberts

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Aug 15, 2009, 12:56:49 PM8/15/09
to

<tin...@isbd.co.uk> wrote in message
news:4a829df2$0$31040$bed6...@news.gradwell.net...

Adding to the other recommendations for Ikea - I built a single bed into a
small bedroom with one end fixed to the wall and the other to the slope over
the stairs (which intruded into the bedroom).

The basic structure was straightforward (just a couple of big bits of wood)
which required a base and matress.

I found that Ikea do very nice sprung bases (a bit like the old leaf springs
on cars, but across the bed all the way down) and matresses to fit.

I went to the local Ikea, tried out various combinations of base and matress
(all nicely laid out on display, with sections also fixed to the wall so you
could see what you were buying) and chose a base and matress.

I then built the bed to fit the base and matress.

This gives you a bed with the comfort level you like, and takes away most of
the fiddly stuff and leaves you just with the big wood bits to do.

Cheers

Dave R

tin...@isbd.co.uk

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Aug 16, 2009, 7:01:59 AM8/16/09
to
Thanks for this and all the other ideas everyone.

--
Chris Green

Grimly Curmudgeon

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Aug 16, 2009, 7:36:15 AM8/16/09
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We were somewhere around Barstow, on the edge of the desert, when the
drugs began to take hold. I remember tin...@isbd.co.uk saying something
like:

>Thanks for this and all the other ideas everyone.

What's wrong with two pallets? Very retro chic squat.

Rod

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Aug 16, 2009, 4:38:27 PM8/16/09
to

If you want sprung slats, you might find that the sets available at Ikea
work for you. We bought a kingsize bedframe with solid slats and
replaced with two sets from Ikea. Had to make a centre support - but
that was not at all difficult.

And quite cheap.

--
Rod

Steve Firth

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Aug 16, 2009, 10:49:05 AM8/16/09
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<tin...@isbd.co.uk> wrote:

> Any other comments/ideas?

I made the bed this morning. It took about five minutes.

Owain

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Aug 16, 2009, 1:44:59 PM8/16/09
to
On 16 Aug, 12:36, Grimly Curmudgeon wrote:
> What's wrong with two pallets? Very retro chic squat.

The gap in the middle, and splinters.

Owain

Calvin Sambrook

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Aug 17, 2009, 5:25:25 PM8/17/09
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<tin...@isbd.co.uk> wrote in message
news:4a829df2$0$31040$bed6...@news.gradwell.net...

I don't really consider myself a woodworker but I've made four wooden beds
over the years. Three are still going strong in regular use and one is
currently not required so is in storage but will be fine when it's next
needed. It's fairly straightforward but don't expect to save any money over
buying a cheap bed. The real advantages come in pride and satisfaction,
quality and the ability to make it just how you want it - one of mine is a
high bed with a desk underneath and some very stylish steps going up, all
fitted into a difficult corner space.

A couple of things to look out for:
Corner joints - make them nice and tight as any rocking here will quickly
get annoying and damaging
Mattress size - they're not all standard, or rather they are but there are
lots of standards to choose from.
Mattress construction - higher quality "pocket sprung" mattresses apparently
don't like slats, I had to adapt one of my beds by adding a thin sheet of
MDF over the slats.

A simple bed my way is just two ends constructed from two legs and a couple
of rails each, tenon joints glued and pinned and held together with a
spanish windlass while the glue sets. The head end is taller than the foot.
The two long rails which support the slats are each made from an outer plank
and an inner supporting bar (about 2x1"), glued and screwed together.
Tenons where the rails meet the legs and screws through from the ends.
Slats across and you're done. Add a middle long rail for a double bed.
All of that can be done with basic tools, saw, chisels etc, I can't remember
reaching for my router.
As someone else has mentioned, round the edges or learn to swear quietly so
as not to disturb your partner when you bash your leg.

Grimly Curmudgeon

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Aug 17, 2009, 5:56:00 PM8/17/09
to
We were somewhere around Barstow, on the edge of the desert, when the
drugs began to take hold. I remember Owain <spuorg...@gowanhill.com>
saying something like:

>On 16 Aug, 12:36, Grimly Curmudgeon wrote:
>> What's wrong with two pallets? Very retro chic squat.
>
>The gap in the middle, and splinters.

Use a better class of pallet, like GKN, and unless you're doing a lot of
heavy duty humping, the gap isn't really a problem.

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