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Bunk bed plans

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Forum topic by WeekendWarrior posted 728 days ago 12424 views 1 time favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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WeekendWarrior

12 posts in 873 days


728 days ago

I’ve been searching around the internet for bunk beds I can build. There are a lot of plans online but I’m really having a hard time finding something I like. I found this bunk bed for sale online which I really like but I would need plans to actually build it. Any help finding plans to bunk beds similar to this would be greatly appreciated.


14 replies so far

View Rex B's profile

Rex B

304 posts in 751 days


#1 posted 728 days ago

Here's a simple one made from 2×4 lumber on woodgears.ca.

-- Rex

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WeekendWarrior

12 posts in 873 days


#2 posted 728 days ago

Thanks Rex! I did see that one and gave it some thought. I’m new to woodworking and require more detailed plans. I enjoy that woodgears website though, that guy is amazing.

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WeekendWarrior

12 posts in 873 days


#3 posted 728 days ago

Question for you Rex. Doesn’t the picture I provided look like they just used common 1x pine and 4×4’s for the posts? It doesn’t look like select wood to me?

Every time I go to get lumber everyone tries to talk me out of using common pine to build furniture items around the house. I mean I understand the argument about using nice hardwood for highly visible pieces. But I really like the look of the bed with the knots on it. Also, I don’t want to spend a lot on lumber right now because I’m still learning so cheap pine seems the way to go. If it’s possible to make a bed look that using common pine from Home Depot I’d be happy.

Thanks for your time!

View HalDougherty's profile

HalDougherty

1820 posts in 1738 days


#4 posted 728 days ago

Here’s a set of bunk beds that was published in Wood Magazine a few years ago. It’s also been published in several of their special plans issues.

http://www.woodstore.net/kidoakbunbed.html

And knotty pine looks good for furniture. Especially if you are just getting started and learning woodworking. These beds are shown made from red oak, but they could be made from anything. Beds are simple furniture. You’ve got two end pieces two rails, a ladder and a guard rail for the top bunk. That’s about the easiest piece of furniture there is to build.

-- Hal, Tennessee http://www.first285.com

View Rex B's profile

Rex B

304 posts in 751 days


#5 posted 728 days ago

Yes the bed in your picture does look like construction lumber to me, that’s what reminded me of the woodgears plans. I definitely agree with you, using cheap wood for beginner projects is the way to go and can yield great results; the key is to put a little extra effort into the details to clean things up.

Matthias over at woodgears uses cheap lumber all the time, and makes awesome stuff with it. He has definitely inspired me to do the same. I bet you’ve already seen this, but if you look at this page you will find more detailed instructions about three different size beds. There is no writeup for the bunk bed, but he based it on the same construction techniques used for the other beds.

I’ll be interested to see what you come up with, I love seeing nice furniture made from 2×4’s.

-- Rex

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WeekendWarrior

12 posts in 873 days


#6 posted 728 days ago

Rex,

That 2×4 twin bed shown on your link looks like it could withstand a bomb. I think you could put wheels on that bad boy and drive it into battle. I’m all for that kind of construction myself but my wife prefers a little more frills. I think I’m going to go ahead with a plan I found on plans now.

Maybe if I just build one directly from plans I’ll better understand how it all goes together and then I can give a try at the design in the picture. It looks really easy to build but I have no idea how they put the pieces together because I can’t see any hardware. They did a nice job of tucking everything away on the inside which is a feature of that bed I like.

Hal,

Thank you for the suggested link. It’s a nice looking bed. I totally agree with you that beds are a simple construction. It’s the details of the measurements and how it all goes together that prevents me from just jumping in. I’m still at the stage that I need step by step plans that just tell me each step of the way. Doing what the plans ask is not a problem, I’m just lost without the guide.

The bunk beds will be my 4th woodworking project. I hope it’s not much longer before I can just walk out into the garage and start building something. Searching around for exactly what I want has been the lowest point of my projects. It’s very hard to find exactly what I want. Do you know of a service or individual I could show a picture to (like that bed) and they provide plans? I would love to build that for my kids!

View nate22's profile

nate22

412 posts in 1376 days


#7 posted 727 days ago

Hi,

I make bunk beds and all sizes of other beds. If you want me to I can give you dimensions of the bed and you could go from there if you like. I design all of my own furniture so it wouldn’t be hard for me. If you are interested just email me. And if you want to see the bunk beds I make just look on page here on lumberjocks.

-- K & N Furniture Middlebury, In.

View WeekendWarrior's profile

WeekendWarrior

12 posts in 873 days


#8 posted 727 days ago

Very kind of you Nate. I went ahead with the plans I mentioned above so I now have the dimensions needed to build the bunk beds. It requires 13 2×6’s which I purchased and have sitting in my garage. I just need to plane them down to 1” thickness so I can start cutting out the pieces.

The one thing I don’t like about this design is the small slats so I plan to either make it solid like the original design I wanted or put a single cross board.

View Martyroc's profile

Martyroc

2708 posts in 807 days


#9 posted 727 days ago

Good luck on your build, I am of the mindset that all lumber has great character and if you can picture it in your head you can build it, and regardless of the lumber you choose it will come out just fine. One bit of advice, I have been woodworking almost 30 years and I still do this every time, read the plans twice before you even step into the shop, take your time. Don’t worry about mistakes, there are no mistakes just lessons you are learning. Every project might have something that os not 100% perfect to you, fixing it is what makes you a good woodworker. ;)

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

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WeekendWarrior

12 posts in 873 days


#10 posted 723 days ago

Hey guys,

I have a question about putting the headboard/footboard together for this bunk bed. There’s two 1×5 cross sections than are joined with 1×4 uprights. They are joined with mortise and tenon joints. The plans then say to put a ‘Confirmat Screw’ into each of the joints.

What I want to know is how much does putting that screw in the joint actually help? It seems the four boards that make up the assembly would be plenty strong as is. I would rather NOT put the screw in for aesthetic reasons and don’t want to hassle with trying to cover it up. Also, what the heck is a ‘Confirmat’ screw?

View GRT's profile

GRT

1 post in 793 days


#11 posted 548 days ago

WeekendWarrior – Did you build the bunk beds in from the “plans now” website? If so, how did the project turn out? I built two twin beds for my kids last year with 2 inch thick lumber and 4×4 inch posts. I have never liked the beds because they look like they are built for an elephant. That said, I would like to try another style of bed.

View PPhil's profile

PPhil

3 posts in 229 days


#12 posted 229 days ago

I think Rex found his answer but I thought that I would add my two cents. Common pine makes a nice bed. I have made over a thousand bunk beds using it. I will insert a picture of one below.

It looks like the bed in the above picture has 4×4 posts from spruce, ponderosa or some other knotty variety of pine. The bunk bed plan uses 2×4 and 2×6 rails. The 4 panels on the ends are common 1 by laminated panels (3/4 inch nominal thickness) that can be gotten at the big box stores. (Laminated means that they are made from many pieces.) I will bet there is a dado to inset those panels in the post about an inch and they are glued and finish nailed through the post for added strength. As for hanging all of those rails, I am thinking that they are using some form of commonly available bed rail hangers. The hardware on the bed rails and guard rails is hidden unlike the bunk bed plans linked here. The posts are probably stacked with a dowel in the center. A 2 or 3 inch dowel is all that is needed because of the high shear strength of wood. (Kind of like the small metal pin that holds a trailer hitch in place and pulls a huge trailer under tremendous stress.)

The below bunk is one that I built from common southern yellow pine that I got from a lumberyard.

-- Patrick at Bunk Beds Unlimited

View AlaskaGuy's profile

AlaskaGuy

486 posts in 810 days


#13 posted 229 days ago

The biggest problem with using construction grad lumber is it moisture content. Design for plenty of wood movement.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View PPhil's profile

PPhil

3 posts in 229 days


#14 posted 206 days ago

Usually the problem is that the wood is treated badly. If you store any wood in the rain it will make it difficult to work with and it will need to equilibrate to indoor conditions. I have used kiln-dried pine for many years and not had problems with moisture if it is treated right. My favorite is Douglas fir but good grades of Southern Yellow Pine are a close second. I have used a lot of Dense Select Structural Grade or Machine Rated which is VERY dense and contains a lot of old-growth heart wood. Someone once wrote that wood will always remember that it was a tree. Some pine is particularly willful.

-- Patrick at Bunk Beds Unlimited

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