Pine Bed Frame

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Project by Zulu55 posted 02-23-2012 05:32 PM 3109 views 5 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hey all,

I just finished my son’s bed frame. I chose Pine to match the dresser and bedside table I had made earlier.

I attached the upper and lower stretchers to the posts with mortise and tenon’s to form a frame. I then made a smaller “frame” consisting of vertical rails and two additional stretcher’s that would “fit” into the large frame. I say, “fit” because the math side of my brain must have been taking a nap while I was crunching numbers (after I already cut the mortises into the posts!) As soon as I realized my mistake and that there was going to be a 1 1/4” vertical gap, I was a bit disappointed. I came up with a few solutions. One involved shortening the head and footboards, another involved buying new lumber for the posts and the third involved adding an additional stretcher to compensate for the gap. I decided to go with the third solution. Once I decided on that, I didn’t feel like adding another piece of Pine as I figured it would look a bit chunky (meaning that the Pine was already stacking up near the top). I decided to add a piece of dark contrasting wood and I just so happened to have some Jatoba lying around in my shop. I glued it to the top of the vertical rail frame and fit the assembly into the foot and headboards. I am happy with the results.

The project was finished with one coat of rubbed on Boiled Linseed Oil, Brushed on amber shellac and some wax.

The 2nd last picture is my son assisting with the finishing touches (adding the bed hardware to the rails).

The last picture is the bed all set up and my little fella hiding behind his safety rail.

-- Adam - Langley, British Columbia (Canada)

11 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


117234 posts in 3724 days

#1 posted 02-23-2012 06:45 PM

Wow that’s a great bed Adam your son has to love it.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Tokolosi's profile


678 posts in 2502 days

#2 posted 02-23-2012 07:27 PM

Great looking bed. And if you didnt explain that you made an error I’d have thought the Jatoba was there because of the design. Really gives a fantastic horizontal accent!

-- “There is nothing like looking, if you want to find something. You certainly usually find something, if you look, but it is not always quite the something you were after.” ~ JRR Tolkien

View Martyroc's profile


2712 posts in 2452 days

#3 posted 02-23-2012 07:35 PM

That looks great, and I don’t see that as a mistake, that is creative genius at work. Your son seems to like it very much, good job Dad!

-- Martin ....always count the number of fingers you have before, and after using the saw.

View RockyBlue's profile


271 posts in 2840 days

#4 posted 02-23-2012 07:42 PM

Looks great and I agree with Tokolosi about the accent darker wood, looks like it was planned. I will be building a similar bed for my 2yr old in a few weeks and I like the safety rail idea, I never knew they existed. Thanks for sharing.

-- I haven't had this much fun since hogs ate my little brother.

View Zulu55's profile


72 posts in 2463 days

#5 posted 02-24-2012 01:15 AM

Thanks for the compliments.

RockyBlue, the safety rail was purchased at Toys R’ Us. They usually have them on sale for about $35 if I recall correctly. They also have a “double” version that has a rail for both sides of the bed.

-- Adam - Langley, British Columbia (Canada)

View Skiedra's profile


259 posts in 2438 days

#6 posted 02-24-2012 10:18 AM

That is one fine bed, Zulu55.

Could you tell me the thickness of pine used? I’m a very fresh woodworker and have difficulty deciding what size/thickness of wood to use. I tend to always over-do with “make it even stronger” mentality, and the overall result is bulky.

View workerinwood's profile


2717 posts in 3214 days

#7 posted 02-24-2012 01:34 PM

Very nice, great job!!

-- Jack, Albuquerque

View Everett1's profile


213 posts in 2681 days

#8 posted 02-24-2012 04:02 PM


I have those same craftsman quick clamps too. All are good except the really big ones I have, they always dont catch when tightening.

Also, under your bench, is that the old Leigh jig? I think i have the same one, found mine on craigslist.

-- Ev in Framingham, MA

View JohnEinNJ's profile


94 posts in 2494 days

#9 posted 02-24-2012 04:40 PM

Beautiful work, and terrific creativity in making lemonade out of your design mistake lemons! And it’s great that your son will grow up knowing that building things is a good way to live.

View Zulu55's profile


72 posts in 2463 days

#10 posted 02-24-2012 06:06 PM

Skiedra, I used 5/4 stock for everything except the posts which was 3 1/2” x 3 1/2”. I ripped some stock thinner but that is the stock I used. For the top of the head and foot boards, I resawed to 1/2” on my bandsaw and flattened with my hand planes. The “caps” if you will are made from two of those 1/2” pieces so that the top piece would not have any indication of screws, etc (it has no plugs). So, the lower piece was screwed and glued to the top of the footboard. I profiled the edges of this lower piece on my table saw to 25*, then the top piece is just glued to the lower piece.

Everett1, I too am happy with my craftsman quick clamps! My biggest ones are 48” so I haven’t experienced the same grip problem….thankfully! Also, you have a good eye! That is a Leigh D4 jig under there :) I also found mine on good ole’ craigslist!

JohnEinNJ, I will be doing my best to show my son the satisfaction a person can get by building something with his own hands.

-- Adam - Langley, British Columbia (Canada)

View Skiedra's profile


259 posts in 2438 days

#11 posted 02-24-2012 08:04 PM

Thanks for the details, Zulu55!

And the height of the wide planks is 6”? Or is it 8”?

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