Building a pirate boat bed need some advice or validation on my plans

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Forum topic by Russ posted 12-28-2009 07:47 AM 13384 views 1 time favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Russ's profile


357 posts in 3281 days

12-28-2009 07:47 AM

Topic tags/keywords: boat bed pirate question

I built some plans on Google Sketchup for a boat bed I intend to make for my son. The idea is to replicate a bed seen here. I’m looking for any advice on the structure of this bed. Specifically I want to make sure this will be safe for my son as he gets older. Currently he is 2 but I want to make sure this will withstand the harsh treatment (jumping up and down and such). I’m including some screen shots obtained from sketchup. My intention is to use Poplar (3/4”) for everything I was planning to join the multiple boards for the wide spans with biscuits. The front portion I was considering using bendable poplar available from my local hardwood dealer and laminating multiple sheets within a jig I would have to make. Also the sketchup does not show it but there is railing about 10-12” tall along the top. Thank you for your time and support.


Pirate Bed Front


Pirate Bed Bottom


Pirate Bed Top

-- Russ

11 replies so far

View CaptainSkully's profile


1602 posts in 3762 days

#1 posted 12-28-2009 05:49 PM

That’s very cool! You could set the box spring on the floor, but that wouldn’t allow any clearance for drawers underneath. You could put vertical supports spaced so that they would fit in between the drawers. All this is assuming you want drawers underneath the bed. Faux drawer fronts or more pirate ship details could work if you don’t need the clearance. My $0.02…

-- You can't control the wind, but you can trim your sails

View MrsN's profile


987 posts in 3729 days

#2 posted 12-28-2009 05:57 PM

Many of the kid beds that I have seen have used a solid platform for the bed to rest on, something like 3/4 plywood, and just a mattress. I had a car bed as a kid, my little brother had a bus (he slept on top and the inside of the bus was a playhouse).

View Russ's profile


357 posts in 3281 days

#3 posted 12-28-2009 07:01 PM

MrsN: I was thinking the 3/4 plywood was best I used the slats so the structure was exposed and because my wife thinks they are best. However I think the safest is solid platform.

CaptainSkully: I’m think if of forgoing the box spring and just having a mattress. I do want to do a large drawer underneath as my wife has specific plans about it. Any ideas on the 2×2 for support form he sides?

Thank you both for your advice.

-- Russ

View Taigert's profile


593 posts in 4044 days

#4 posted 12-29-2009 07:48 AM

I would suggest the bed rails be at least 2” thick by say 6” high. They will be tacking a lot of stress from bouncing an getting jump on. I fullly agree with the plywood or OSB to support the mattress. I built my son a Captains bed when he was younger, it had drawers on both side so it did not have to be against a wall. If you want the look of the bow hull to have the planked look as on a boat. You could go to your library and order a book on whats called Lofting. This would show you how to cut the Planks. If you put a door at the stearn of the ship to gain accsee to the area behind the drawers, you could make the dead space into a nice half closet. This works great for boys with not having to worry about hieght for things like dress’s
Have fun and post pics

-- Taigert - Milan, IN

View ZachM's profile


83 posts in 3909 days

#5 posted 12-29-2009 08:27 AM

Slats are preferred over a solid platform since they allow the mattress to breath and not rot.

View ND2ELK's profile


13495 posts in 3977 days

#6 posted 12-29-2009 10:04 AM

You might contact LJ Chris Davis. He is the bed master of the group. He has made a lot of boat beds.

God Bless

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3319 days

#7 posted 12-29-2009 01:17 PM

you need a sidelatter so he can climp on to the to and there he want a sterringwheel and he wants some sails too
and a mast with a piratflag near the top and don´t forget the gun´s they are very importen and there have to be maps and a pirattrunk full of treaser´s I gess you have the idea now

have fun both of you with the project


View Russ's profile


357 posts in 3281 days

#8 posted 12-29-2009 10:16 PM

Taigert: That is about what I was thinking for the railing. I just choose to keep it out of Sketchup drawing for now. I’m going to check out the book. Perhaps I’ll be able to find it locally if not I might just order it as my wife wants the planking look on the bow. I love your idea of a door at the back to use that for a small closet or storage space. Thanks for the advice.

ZachM and ND2ELK Thanks for the advice.

Dennisgrosen: I was thinking of doing a small latter or something that would blend in after I finish the project. I also plan to do the mast and sail. I didn’t think of the idea of a gun. I’ll have to look into that option. I’m also going to do a trunk for storage in the room since it will be pirate themed. Thanks for the advice.

-- Russ

View CaptainSkully's profile


1602 posts in 3762 days

#9 posted 12-30-2009 06:37 PM

I made a PVC cannon to do pirate parties on the weekend and to create chaos on the lake. It “shoots” calcium carbide. I’ve got the plans laying around somewhere…

Pirate Cannon

-- You can't control the wind, but you can trim your sails

View sras's profile


4943 posts in 3333 days

#10 posted 12-30-2009 07:01 PM

I would also cast a vote for a solid support for the matress. Eventually, your son will be bigger and heavier. My sons in thier teenage years would just “plop” on the bed and ended up bending the metal frame! Flipping the matress from time to time keeps the matress fresh.

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View Russ's profile


357 posts in 3281 days

#11 posted 12-30-2009 11:01 PM

I was looking at another design the other night and the slats were very close together say 1/2 or 3/4” separated. I wonder if 3/4” planks would be stronger than 3/4” plywood am I wrong on that?

CaptainSkully: I would love to see the plans if you find them.

Sras: Thank you for you advice.

-- Russ

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