I finally completed my very first project. A twin bed for my son made out of maple and cherry with poplar mattress support slats. The finish is BLO, blonde shellac, and paste wax.
It took just under 6 months to do. A lot of that time was spent on researching what tool or technique was needed for the next step. Almost every tool and/or technique used, I did for the very first time.
The plans were largely based on the bunk bed plans available at Rockler. I did make some noticeable changes that I will illustrate in the photos.
The most noticeable are the posts. The plans called for laminating 2 boards together, but I didn’t want the glue line visible. So after some experimenting I ended up with the one shown in Figure 3. It’s 4 boards that have 1/2”x1/2” rabbett on 1 side. Butted up and dominoed to each other. It leaves a nice 1/4”x1/4” rabbett reveal that seemed interesting. There was an added advantage that it left a hollow down the middle. I’ll be making another bed for my other son in the spring, and these are designed to be bunked. So the hollow will serve to connect the two.
The second change was the mattress support. The plans called for a simple plywood bottom. But I went with poplar slats – 4” wide spaced 1” apart. I attached the slats to the cleat with dominoes. In fact, I used dominoes for every joint in the project, except the bed bolts.
The third change was the bed bolts. The plans called for the metal bracket, mortised type hardware, but I wanted something that would take the abuse my boys can dish out. So I opted for a bolt through the post and into a captured rectangular nut.
The final picture is the completed bed after mom did her part.
Please provide any comments, criticisms, or suggestions you may have. You won’t hurt my feelings and it’s the only way I can get better.