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Project by LeTurbo posted 02-04-2017 06:19 PM 1577 views 1 time favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

The frame is ash, and is built around the existing slats of a friend’s old bed. I wasn’t sure how much material would be removed in shaping so, stupidly, I started with rough, undimensioned timber. What hell. It turned out that about half an inch had to be removed to flatten one of the boards. Won’t try that again.

It’s one reason, too, why I went with the dovetail leg joint instead of mortise and tenon. I didn’t know if I’d go right through to the joint while shaping it. Originally, I guess it was also intended to be a slightly different design feature

Most shaping was done with my Stanley No. 4 and spokeshaves. Later, I turned to the drill with a sanding disc: there was some breakout around the leg dovetail when I dropped one side, so I had to create a kind of convex line from the front of the keg.

Certainly, I learned a new appreciation for Sam Maloof and the Scandinavian designers (or rather, their craftsmen). Shadow lines are vital, and it’s really hard to shape a perfect curve where the light plays evenly across the surface.

Also, handcutting dovetails isn’t that easy when you’re handling 6 or 7 foot of lumber!

12 comments so far

View swirt's profile


3424 posts in 3172 days

#1 posted 02-05-2017 02:31 AM

Sharp looking. I like the look you achieved on the curved dovetail ends.

-- Galootish log blog,

View Hawaiilad's profile


3294 posts in 3221 days

#2 posted 02-05-2017 06:11 AM

Very nice work…thanks for sharing

-- Larry in Hawaii,

View jimintx's profile


855 posts in 1785 days

#3 posted 02-05-2017 07:12 AM

I dont know, so …

What is “MCM”?

Nice looking work!

-- Jim, Houston, TX

View dannmarks's profile


715 posts in 782 days

#4 posted 02-05-2017 08:57 AM

Clean lines.

View LeTurbo's profile


232 posts in 1786 days

#5 posted 02-05-2017 09:00 AM

MCM = Mid Century Modern, covering the design style that arose around the 1950s. It’s a bit of a cop-out description in my mind, whereas Baroque and Rococo and other periods have much more definitive names.

View helluvawreck's profile


32087 posts in 3067 days

#6 posted 02-05-2017 02:32 PM

Wow! You did a great job on this bed frame. Congratulations.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View R_Stad's profile


417 posts in 2043 days

#7 posted 02-05-2017 03:04 PM

Very nice piece. Enjoyed looking at your previous projects – creative. Well done.

-- Rod - Oregon

View david38's profile


3518 posts in 2544 days

#8 posted 02-05-2017 03:21 PM

nice job

View EricTwice's profile


246 posts in 734 days

#9 posted 02-05-2017 03:25 PM

I wasn t sure how much material would be removed in shaping so, stupidly, I started with rough, undimensioned timber.
- LeTurbo

Were you flattening by hand or with a joiner?
Personally, I wouldn’t use anything but rough lumber. There is usually plenty to work with, and I know that if I straighten it it is straight. It can be a pain, but the end product is always better.

It has wonderful lines. Nice job on the dovetails.

-- nice recovery, They should pay extra for that mistake, Eric E.

View jimintx's profile


855 posts in 1785 days

#10 posted 02-05-2017 06:36 PM

Turbo, thanks.
Not only was I in the dark about the meaning of the MCM acronym, I didn’t recognize that as a bed. Obviously, I’m really out of that style furniture loop. Isn’t that a longish cantilever design on the ends? Can you sit on the foot of the bed okay?

-- Jim, Houston, TX

View LeTurbo's profile


232 posts in 1786 days

#11 posted 02-07-2017 10:19 AM

Thanks everyone for looking – and getting my bed into the Daily Top Three. Much appreciated!

EricTwice, the whole job was done by hand with Stanleys 4 and 7 for flattening. Unfortunately, in the dark lumber merchant’s warehouse, I just hadn’t noticed how “unstraight” one of the pieces was … I was more concerned with looking at grain patterns. So it really turned into a huge labour to straighten and flatten the board, and probably added about a third to the build time.

jimintx, there is a long cantilever, but it’s ok once the mattress is on. The client has a small bedroom, and the missus complained of always kicking the corner leg of their old bed. This way, they’re also able to get the vacuum under the bed from the foot end, rather than from the sides.

View jimintx's profile


855 posts in 1785 days

#12 posted 02-07-2017 02:55 PM

Okay, thanks for more background. I’m learning, and like that style – just didn’t know what it was called. It sure looks like a great example of craftsmanship, and I know they will be more than pleased.

Here at my place, we went to platform bed about 5 years ago, and eliminated box springs, and are very happy to have done it. We solved the vacuum access problem by eliminating the possibility! Ours is like a huge low box, that goes all the way to the floor all the way around, and has drawers on each side. (But I didn’t build it.) I find that I don’t walk into the corner of it very often, never more than once or twice a week.

-- Jim, Houston, TX

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