So my son got to big for the crib I made for him a couple of years ago and I was starting to feel bad for making him sleep on a mattress on the floor.  It kind of reminded me of a scene from a movie where they find the kidnapped kid in a room with a grubby mattress.  So to make up for that I had to make him a cool bed with secret compartments.

I think hidden doors and secret compartments are in our dna.  We all want to have that bookcase where you pull the right book that reveals the hidden room.  Or lift the candle stick to make the fireplace spin to go down to your secret lab.  I know you remember that scene from Young Frankenstein.  Remember the Nes game Shadowgate?  Or the pc game Myst?  Those were full of secret spaces that you had to discover to find the next clue.

The boat bed I built has three..possibly four secret compartments.  One is pretty obvious.  The hatch in the prow of the boat opens to store blankets and other big items.  The name plate on the...um..just a sec...wikipedia...Starboard side is a small drawer to hide goodies in.  My guy put a Mickey Mouse toy in there first thing.  Also on the...port side there is a flag pole that you push down on to reveal a hidden panel (click on pic 3).  That's the cool one.  You can also lift off the mattress and store stuff under the bed itself...

Step 1: Design and Materials

I'm not much for making a real exact drawing of what I build.  I tend to just go for it.  So for this project I did a basic sketch (on paper) with the mattress dimensions, finished height, and the space I had to work with.  Then I just used my tape measure and eye-balled the shape I wanted.  Another big design factor was that I wanted to be able to take it apart easily if I end up moving in the next two years.  So that made it a little more difficult.  As I went along in the project I had to make a few minor adjustments in my original dimensions to allow for plywood bending and for the tools I had on hand.

I up-cycled a lot of materials from other projects (crib) and stuff I had on hand.  I did buy one sheet of 5/8" ply for the mattress to sit on and 2 sheets of 1/8" to cover the boat. The structure is made mostly from 3/4"material.  Plus paint and Polyurethane.  Nails, screws glue...all the basics.

Tools used:
Circular saw 
Jig saw
Cordless drill
Palm sander (random orbit)
Japanese style pull saw
Various drill bits
Tape measure
Quick clamps
<p>This bed looks awesome. Thinking of building one myself. How many hours would you say the bed took you to build?</p>
<p>am i the only one who wants to build their kids furniture with secret compartments and not tell them about it then as a teen check and see if they ever found the secret compartment? and what they put in it</p>
This is awesome. I know you said something about breaking it apart for moving. How do the pieces stay together/come apart?
<p>It kind of reminds me of 'The Goonies'.</p><p>I wanted to make something like this for my son too, but it never happened... due to the lack of time. Other tasks in and around the house ate my time.</p><p>Now he's sixteen and does NOT want a bed like this anymore. Nooo way! :-)</p>
<p>Awesome built and looks great! Gave me a few ideas for a swingset/playhouse we are designing with a pirate theme. Looks like your kid loves this.</p>
<p>This is amazing! </p>
<p>This is a really great bed and awesome project, but I sure wish you had those crappy blue carpets from the 70's!</p>
<p>You are the dream dad most of us never had! Wow! Enchanting.</p>
<p>I was in the manly crafts contest with you, and honestly, this project should have taken grand prize, even over my own. Not the slingshot that won. This is an awesome piece of craft work.</p>
<p>Thanks! </p><p> I don't usually read through all the instructables I look at, but enjoyed reading your leather balm and knife instructable. I had those favorited before you wrote this comment. I really want to make a knife and loved the shape of the one you made. Maybe I'll post a pic if I get around to making it. Looks like we have similar interests. Leather, wood and tools!</p>
Wow. This is truly impressive! So clever. What a great bed, and clear instructions, too. Except for how you supported the mattress - you didn't show that. I'm sure your little boy loves his boat bed. What a great dad he has!
<p>great dad, Yeah!</p>
<p>Outstanding. And I love the push down flagpole mechanism</p>
<p>My jaw is dropped! Very very nice. Wow...</p>
What a great bed I want 1 to keep my copy of &quot; my book of bible story's&quot; safe ;-)
Haha! I was wondering if anybody would notice.
<p>That was my favorite part! ;)</p>
That jumped out at me too when scrolling through the pics. Great idea!
This is really cool!
thats cool man imma try to make it i like building things so tgis will be fun!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)
That is really cool!
Very nice
<br> <br> <br> <br> <br> <strong><em><u>Very Cool&nbsp;</u></em></strong>
Yep, Dad of the year goes to Phiske.
Maybe this year but we'll see what he says when he's a teen. He'll be like &quot;you ruined my life making me sleep in a boat bed!&quot;
This is beautiful, fun and practical! I so want one! And yes. I agree, grown-up beds are truly sad.
I want to make something cool for me and my wife but...priorities. Food, water, electricity ;)
This is incredible, good job.
I appreciate it! Thanks!
WOW! Not sure what else to say there. That is incredible. Yes, your child is lucky and will remember this his whole life. Might even be something he want to pass down to his kids. I want to make one and I don't even have any kids. LOL Maybe I will see if I can convince my better half to let me make a queen size one for us!
That'd be awesome! Queenn size!
This is the most AWSOME bedroom setup I have ever seen! this blows away all them Disney bedroom sets out of the water....litterly! &amp; the use of the real sticks &amp; painted ones you really do have the luckiest little fishernan, he is going to have lots of adventures in that bed! I wish I could have the tools &amp; resourses most creative guys out there have! I have a Deremel &amp; Super pro II a woodburner.
That is just AWESOME!! WOW!!! <br> <br>And such a lucky little boy, to not only have such a clever Dad but one who cares so much too!! <br> <br>Just a word of caution though, while he may not be able to lift the large storage compartment lid right now, they get to that point in a blink of an eye. Please have a look here........ <br>http://www.kidsindanger.org/product-hazards/toy-chests/ <br> <br>I know you would want to keep him safe above all. <br> <br>Also, while the boat might be beyond many people's skills, the real trees plus painted trees and lights look fabulous and look very do-able, even for clutzes like me, so your Instructable was worth visiting for that alone!! <br> <br> <br> <br> <br>
Yeah. I was thinking of putting a child proof latch on it. It's not meant for his use but kids will be kids...It is really high off the ground and I don't think he could open it until he's 4 or 5. He can't open it from the bed itself because you have to reach far over and I made a super snug fit. <br>But thanks for the warning! My mind always thinks the worst thing that could happen...Yesterday he tripped down some concrete steps and I dove to catch him. just caught his head before he hit it. <br> I about pooped my pants. :) Kids...
Even if he can open it up, he can't close the top on himself. There's a horizontal bar that splits the compartment up in two. The most he'll be able to do is stand inside; he can't sit there and he certainly won't be able to close the top on himself.
Hi Racster, the problem has been with kids sticking just their heads into the toy boxes and then the lid coming down on the back of their neck, crushing their windpipe or trapping their necks against the wall of the toy box, so that they can't breathe.&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; Here's the link again (done properly this time - ooops!)&nbsp;&nbsp; <a href="http://www.kidsindanger.org/product-hazards/toy-chests/" rel="nofollow">http://www.kidsindanger.org/product-hazards/toy-chests/</a>
That's pretty awful. Thanks for letting everyone know.
This is awesome great idea am going to make one for my cousin. But I'm going to use a water bed. Seriously great idea.
That would be really cool! Post a pic if you do. I'd love to see it.
really cool build and nice &quot;ible&quot; I especially like the name plate secret drawer.
Thanks! That's my favorite part too!
Nice job, great idea for a young sailor.
Best and coolest bed i ever saw. Great
Thanks so much!
customize bed with daddy's love ... awww what a lucky child. :) ur so creative, talented and very resourceful!
Great build man!
Dude, your an awesome dad!
Your child will remember this for years to come with love.

About This Instructable


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Bio: Whatever you do take care of your shoes
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