Cheap, easy, low-waste platform bed plans

Build a queen size platform bed on the cheap, with storage space underneath, for less than $30, in about an hour, and learn some basic carpentry skills in the process. Please read the "design objective" below.

For similarly easy shelving plans, see:
For similarly easy dining table plans, see:

As a professional carpenter, furniture maker, and designer/builder, I see a lot of home carpentry projects that are grossly overbuilt and over-engineered. One of the goals of this Instructable is to avoid the unnecessary overbuilding that I frequently see on this site, and that I see every day working in the residential construction industry. Many of the building methods we (in the US) use today are horribly wasteful despite the advances that have been made in materials science and structural engineering, because most people in the residential building industry, from architects and engineers to carpenters, are mired in tradition, doing things a certain way "because that is how it has always been done", rather than consulting the best available science, or even questioning their own assumptions about "the right way to do it". I don't intend to knock tradition, either. Many of the tricks, techniques, and tools that I use daily are definitely "old-school", but seem to have been forgotten.

This bed is designed to be cheap, lightweight, sturdy, and produce a minimum of waste, using a minimum number of tools. It is intended for use with a futon or mattress without a boxspring and provides storage space underneath sized to fit common cheap plastic storage bins. It also provides good ventilation for the futon or mattress, something that I learned was necessary after my expensive futon grew a large mold/mildew patch on the underside. For those who might think that this bed is flimsy, my wife and I use it nightly, and I am 6'-5" and weigh 240lbs. I wouldn't jump up and down in the middle of it, but it will easily take any other abuse you commit upon it. When I calc it out, this bed uses 23.16 board feet of lumber (1 bd.ft.= 144, or 1.93 cubic ft., and produces only 42 cubic inches of waste, about 1.25%.

Instructables member frazeeg has posted a SketchUp model here.
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dandersen41 year ago
AWESOME project! I have put together some name brand furniture with more difficulty and lesser quality. I asked the lumber yard to cut it for me and just assembled it when I got home. It took about 1 1/2 hours and an adjustment after I was finished as it set too high for my thick mattress. I used it until I moved and gave it to my niece who has been using it now for over a year with no problems. Thank you for a great, easy project.
aeray (author)  dandersen41 year ago
I'm glad it worked for you, and thanks for the compliment.
murmom1 year ago
Just made 2 of these (twin size) had to make different heights to accomodate mattress thickness. My sons wanted couch height. This was so easy, thank you for the instructions.
aeray (author)  murmom1 year ago
Glad you liked it, and thanks for the photos.
zirlock2 years ago
I absolutely love the instructable! I built the first bed and then I could not stop and had to build one for the upstairs bedroom as well. :) I think the text was well written and even with zero carpentry background I was able to build the beds with great success. Thanks aeray!
BuildAFence2 years ago
Just so ya'll know, if you use an impact screwdriver and not a drill driver the phillips head screws go straight in. I was using a drill with a bit to run 4 inch screws into the studs of a wall and when the drill gets loose and jumps the track while your still pressing in it just eats the screw head. Not so with impact driver. I have never had the impact driver jump out the track of a phillips head screw, even once its all the way in it'll keep driving. Impact drivers are awesome!! I have a Ridgid at home and the new little 12V Dewalt for work.
By the way here is my twin version. It is kinda high for my liking and for kids to climb onto so I think I am going to chop the legs in half. It was nice to put those kids jumpers and walkers under there for a while.
aeray (author)  BuildAFence2 years ago
Thanks for the pics. I bought an impact driver several years ago, immediately after borrowing a co-workers. Unfortunately, I used it so much that it was in the shop being repaired when I made this Instructable. They were also really expensive at the time, so I didn't think many do-it-yourselfers would have/want to buy one. I frequently use mine to drive 12" to 20" long "timberlock" or "olly" screws while timberframing and installing SIPS panels, and have even used it to remove the lugnuts on my truck a time or two, not to mention siding two houses using solely screws as fasteners, and half a dozen+ metal roofs. Impact drivers rock, and are, IMHO, the best cordless tool invention ever.
urbanalbino2 years ago
I made this today! Thank you for posting such awesome directions. I have never assembled anything this 'detailed' before. I had the help of tool identification and uses from my dad and an exceptionally smart 7 year old cousin. I haven't put my mattress on it yet, but I've got a feeling its going =)to be postiively splendiferous.

By the way --- using a saw leaves you with a very strange satisfying feeling!! =)
aeray (author)  urbanalbino2 years ago
I'm glad you enjoyed it. Any pictures?

I told you I was going to do it again...but I didn't! She did it herself! (I pre-drilled all the holes) But she really did her thing, this was an excellent project to do together.

Thank you again.

aeray (author)  skillingsworth2 years ago
Thanks again. As divalea wrote: "I guess platform beds are like kittens, peanut butter cups, and potato chips: hard to stop at one!"

My only other comment is that the slats look a little widely spaced. If it is a fairly stiff mattress, and your daughter is fairly light (as it appears) it shouldn't be a problem now. As your daughter grows, and the mattress ages, you may need to add some more slats.

Please keep me posted, and keep up the good work.
Thank you, I thought they were far apart also, and was about to go cut another one when I remembered her mattress is the "bunk mattress" it has it's own built in slats at the bottom of the mattress, so I don't think it will be an issue.

Take care, I'll be checking back often, I noticed you talking about a corner unit and some other projects I'm dying to see, lol.

I built this bed yesterday in a full sized version. I started with Phillips head screws which were a disaster, and quickly chose to drive all over town in search of Torx screws. After I found them, an hour and forty five minutes later, my "work in progress" guest room has a great looking sturdy bed! I'm working on a wood burning project for the headboard, and my daughter has already asked that I make her one in a twin version and paint it turquiose! I am going to shorten the legs though, she's only 5, lol. We are going to get the materials later today!

I am going to build bedside tables and bookshelves myself also. Once I realized how much money I could save, I decided the entire guest room will be made by yours truly.

Thank you aeray! I am inspired! ;-)
aeray (author)  skillingsworth2 years ago
Excellent work, and thanks for the photos.
Mindfulmoon2 years ago
This is an excellent instructable. Directions were clear, thorough and easy to follow. The project turned out just as it should have. Even though we calculated and purchased for a different sized bed (Full) we had no trouble doing so. Took us slightly longer than we had planned but that was due to a severe thunderstorm, two meals and a movie break. :-) We are not "rushers". Thank you for posting this. We have plans for one more (twin) in a month or so. Also, we decided on a different sized bin due budgetary restraints and found it advisable to "downsize" the legs by 6 inches. I'll post a pic when I can. Also, I'll try to show our "hack" for attaching my legacy store-bought headboard.
aeray (author)  Mindfulmoon2 years ago
I look forward to it.
theloo0072 years ago
This is such a wonderful layout for a bed frame/storage area. I have a question for the author, do you see a problem if I substitute using 4x4 for legs. I want to add wheels and will shorten legs accordingly to adjust for the height? Lynn
aeray (author)  theloo0072 years ago
It shouldn't be a problem.
aertz2 years ago
This looks pretty simple! I'm planning on building this but for a full size mattress. How would the measurements differ?
aeray (author)  aertz2 years ago
Just make the slats 5" shorter. Everything else is the same.
ddodd12 years ago
Firstly, this bed looks incredible, and it seems like an extreme thorough and concise instructable. As a college student, I especially like the low price estimate!

I'm hoping to build a platform bed for a twin size mattress, but it needs to fit a 28" tall dog crate underneath. It seems simple enough to just build much longer legs, but is that safe? Should I add an extra leg in the center and/or connect all four legs to keep it from wobbling? Maybe drill it into the studs along the wall? How much bowing do I need to account for? I don't have an extremely extensive amount of carpentry experience, and I'm worried about crushing my dog!
aeray (author)  ddodd12 years ago
For a twin, you should be fine with just elongating the legs. If you want to be extra-safe, just use 1 x 6's for the legs instead of 1 x 4's.

ddodd1 aeray2 years ago
Perfect! Thanks so much! I can't wait to build my bed!!!
divalea3 years ago
I guess platform beds are like kittens, peanut butter cups, and potato chips: hard to stop at one!

I built a queen platform for myself this past weekend. I managed to get the Spax screws at Home Despot, but still had to settle for the loathsome Philips. (Which ended up causing problems, mainly fatigue from fighting the camming-out.) Another lesson learned with this project:check the angle on your table saw blade EVERY TIME, even the NEXT DAY. Most of my cuts were at a slight angle, very slight, because my blade got angled just enough from the previous day's cutting. On the slats and legs, this was not a big deal. On the one long frame piece, it was a "use a hacksaw to cut off a slice to square off the end of the lumber because otherwise there will not be a good joint" deal.

The building did go faster this time. Still not a two-hour job, but faster. The lumber and screws cost $40. I ended up with a number of 1.5" pieces (that I'm going to use for another project) because it was cheaper to buy 6' lengths of wood than 12'. (6' 1x4 at my HD was $1.99, 12' 1x4 was triple that.) I had to predrill everything again. Even with better screws, the wood split. Grrr.

After sleeping on my mattress on the floor for nearly a year (hey, divorced lady, should've taken the King bed frame!), this bed feels really high in the air. It's great!

I got the uncut lumber into the Crown Vic this time (last time, I had some pieces cut first, this time I didn't.) It took a while! I've included a pic for proof. ^__^

Pic 1 is the bed, all dressed up. I'm using a king comforter and flat sheet. (Bed linens were all sourced from discount stores like TJ Maxx. Still expensive, but much nicer than what the same money would buy for "current season" linens.) 
Pic 2 is to show the awesome storage under.
Pic 3 is construction, using a sewing table and the first platform bed as sawhorses.
Pic 4 is "How to get 13 pieces of lumber in a car."

Next project: building your bookshelves to make swell room dividers. Can hardly wait.
aeray (author)  divalea3 years ago
Excellent. Thanks for the pictures, especially the last one.
llmadigan3 years ago
aeray, you are THE MAN! i made your shelves and am super pleased with them - especially since i'm not much of a builder :) i'm planning on making this bed tonight and have everything but the countersink. how important is it that the screws are sunk in? could just a pilot hole be good enough? i'm not trying to be a cheapskate, but if i don't have to buy it i'd prefer not to...

thank you, btw, for putting together these plans and posting them for free! i'm so proud of myself for building simple/solid stuff for myself.
aeray (author)  llmadigan3 years ago
Just a pilot hole is fine, especially since most Torx head screws are self-countersinking to some degree. The only holes I bothered countersinking are the ones for connecting the 2x4s together for the frame. Oh, wait- if you already made the shelves, that means that you already have a 9/32" drill bit, right?
Just drill the small pilot holes, and then use the 9/32" bit to "countersink" them about 1/8". Problem solved. Post pics when you're done, and look for my upcoming "Cheap, easy, low-waste trestle table" which I should have up by New Years.
aeray (author)  aeray3 years ago
Oh, yeah, you used 3/8" all thread didn't you? Whichever bit you used for that will work as well, but be careful not to let it pull itself in too deep.
Hi Aeray,
Just wanted to send you pics of one of your bed designs. This is a full size. I had to use a piece of 2x4 vs 2 pieces os 1x4 (see pic). Will this cause me probs over the long run?

aeray (author)  mhendrickson3 years ago
Looks good. The 2x4 shouldn't be a problem.
eckmannl3 years ago
Thanks so much for posting this! It is just what I needed. Last week my dad came over and I just called out directions to him and his helper. This week, I decided that I needed another one. This time I did it entirely on my own. I have never built anything totally by myself before (I'm a woman in my 30's), so this was really satisfying for me. The one that was built last week was according to your instructions. The one I did this evening was made a little more narrow to fit a full, extra long mattress. Thanks again!!
aeray (author)  eckmannl3 years ago
You're welcome. Post a pic or two.
I am totally inept and I built this bed a year ago. It is a great bed, used with Otis futon. One of the best things about this bed is that it takes up so little space due to the fact the mattress overhangs. The size of the mattess if the amount of space the bed takes up. I'm about to undertake building 2 more. My husband is impressed as I have no carpentry experience whatsoever. Just trying to encourage other slightly beyond middle age women out there.
Thanks! Oh, p.s. only problem was that I couldn't find torx screws anywhere in the size recommended. Should I use deck screws on the next beds?
aeray (author)  southboundtrain3 years ago
If you have already built one, you are NOT inept. You read it and ran with it and it worked out, and you're about to do it again (and again). I'd like to see pics. As for the "deck screws": "deck screws" will be more expensive (you're paying for corrosion-resistant screws), and if you made the first one with Phillips screws, you can make the other ones with Phillips too. If you still can't find Torx or stardrive screws, try finding Robertson or squaredrive screws. If you are really into it, McFeeley's has just about any kind of screw you could possibly want. Any kind of drive other than Phillips or flat will make it far, far easier and faster, so ordering might be worth your time.
Kbjug1233 years ago
I made my bed a week or two ago, built it all by myself. Amazed my husband that I actually did it. It squeaks slightly under certain conditions, but I think that I just need to put one new leg under it. For a headboard I really wanted a picket fence type headboard so I put an ad on Kijiji for a peice of used fence. Then , walking past our "burn" pile ( we live on a feedlot) I saw a peice of brown picket fence. My husband helped me fish it out and when I measured it , it was a perfect 60 inches wide, which is exactly what I needed. So I painted it glossy white and popped it between the bed and the wall. Ladada!!! Thanks for the great instructable . Can't wait to try something else!!
BeanGolem3 years ago
This Ible definitely deserves its rating. I just made one last weekend in a few hours. My lumber store down the street didn't have 14' 1x4s, so I had to improvise the breakdown a little and ended up with a few extra slats. I guess it just makes it that much more sturdy. The scrap is also long enough to be used in other projects, so that's a bonus. I'd post a picture, but... well... it kinda looks exactly the same...
After much searching, I found this Instructable for a platform bed. Built it, disassembled it and shipped it to where I needed it. Took under an hour to reassemble at the destination and it's wonderful. I tweaked the instructions slightly to account for the types of lumber available, but it's all worked out. Used the sheet recommendation in Instructables for a bed skirt and use plastic underbed storage containers to hold my clothes until the rest of the furniture arrives. This is a wonderful project and I recommend it to anyone who wants an inexpensive, easy to build bed. Would like to plug Otis mattresses. Made for futons and wonderful for this bed. Super quality - not a cheap mattress but worth it.
aeray (author)  mhendrickson3 years ago
Glad it worked for you. I am also a big Otis mattress fan: great beds, great customer service.
partrician4 years ago
i loved this project. i had to go to the home depot to get the lumber though but i got home and had this done within 2 hour. now i want to do the headboard mod with the nigth stand extension. i have already mapped it out and plan to install a drawer under the night stand exstension. thank you so much for such a cool project!!! i have saved a ton of money!!
tealeaf934 years ago
Well looks like im not the only one that has built one of your beds and liked it. Thanks a lot for posting this instuctable. I've saved a ton of money.
aeray (author)  tealeaf934 years ago
You're welcome, and thanks for the comment. I enjoyed (and still enjoy) making it and posting it. Enjoy your bed.

Awesome bed frame. I plan on building one in a twin size. Can I get the material list and instructions for that?

aeray (author)  laurie simone14 days ago
Everything is the same, just make the slats 4" shorter
mquinton27 days ago

This looks awesome! I was going to come up with my own plan and you saved me some trouble! :) One question, though. I have a teenage son that is 6'6"+ and at least 340 lbs. He has a habit of tackling me and throwing me on the bad. Also, I will be kneeling on the bed when I put on the sheets since it will be in a corner. I worry that the 1"x4"s might crack under the abuse. But then again, 1" is pretty thick, so I'm torn. What do you think? I wonder if I should just use a sheet of plywood? I welcome advice.

aeray (author)  mquinton27 days ago
I am a big guy too, but not that big. Substitute 2x6s for the frame, and use 2x4s for the slats. I wouldn't use plywood because you need to have some air circulation.
mquinton aeray27 days ago
Thanks! That sounds sturdy enough. :) I'll be sure and put up some pics when I'm done.
califazen2 months ago

I t hink I may narrow the space between slats just a bit for the next one. I laid up a pair of 1x4s on the centerline beneath since the not-so-great-quality warehouse wood was making annoying noises; I may do a king-size version next; that will need a center support--do you think a center leg—maybe just a 1x4— for a bigger model?

aeray (author)  califazen1 month ago
Others have used a 2x4 lengthwise down the center, basically a third rail, attached about 1/4" lower than the slats so there is still a bit of room for them to flex, and another leg made of two pieces of 1x4 just like the other ones.
alejandroerickson made it!1 month ago

Fun! I made one too. Do I get points for using reclaimed wood?

Here is a timelapse video of it

aeray (author)  alejandroerickson1 month ago
Sure, have some points for the improvisation too. You may want to back up the slat nails with some screws though. Thanks for the video!
alejandroerickson made it!1 month ago

Fun! Do I get the extra points for using reclaimed wood? Timber is expensive in the UK :p

Chrisakus2 months ago

I would like to make this for a king mattress. Do you have a supplies list and instructions for that too? I'm wondering if you would recommend additional mid-bed supports to accommodate the larger mattress?

shocksystems4 months ago
My bed collapsed on Sunday morning. After looking for bed frames I realized they were all expensive, would take a while to get and all had questionable strength. Then I searched and found this instructable. I went to Home Depot (the only thing open) got the stock (only had grade 2 pine and not in the dimensions suggested to minimize waste), the total cost was close to $100. Construction went well and we slept on it that night. Feels solid, my wife was very impressed. Thanks for a great instructable.
aeray (author)  shocksystems3 months ago
Looks good, thanks for the photo.
bananafrog3 months ago

Thanks much for the plans. I previously had an issue b/c I had used cheap screws that crumpled in the wood. But after replacing them w/ solid screws, I put the bed together no problem.

However, I'd really like it to be very sturdy. Zero rocking. And at this point, it still seems to have some give, and makes noise when the bed is being, uh, actively used.

What's the best way to make this bed rock solid?


aeray (author)  bananafrog3 months ago
The lumber is still acclimating to the temperature and humidity in your home, which is probably greatly different than that at the lumberyard. Firmly retighten the frame and leg screws with a handheld screwdriver. Don't bother with the slat screws. You may have to do this more than once as everything " settles in". If your activity level is ​particularly high, diagonal braces of 1x4 on the legs (at a 45deg angle) forming a right triangle between the leg and 2x4 frame may be necessary. I'd try snugging up the screws a time or two first, though.
AlexandreZ8 months ago
You don't mention sanding at all, but your boards don't appear particularly rough. Is there an implicit sanding step in here?
aeray (author)  AlexandreZ8 months ago
Nope. No sanding. Nothing really shows. Make sure you get "S4S" lumber ("surfaced four sides") and it should be smooth enough. Almost all lumber from yards in the US is sold this way. Non-S4S is usually special order. If you want to dress it up a bit, sand the visible surfaces with 120 grit paper, stain them, and clearcoat, but mine is plain unfinished, unsanded wood. If you do decide to dress yours up, please post pics.
numb3r5ev3n aeray3 months ago

This was pretty much what I did when I stained mine with Varathane Ebony. I had great results - you can't even tell it's just framing lumber anymore. This is also a great project for learning how to stain and finish wood.

numb3r5ev3n3 months ago

Just popped in to say that I helped my friend put one of these together in her guest room last night. She has one of those crazy 16-inch thick pillowtop mattresses, so we just omitted the legs. Doing this sort of gives it the effect of a floating platform bed. Thanks again!

bananafrog3 months ago

Hi there! I picked up all the parts. Including #10 screws. They are Philips head, couldn't find Torx.

I drilled in holes with the countersink into the 2x4. But the 3" screws only went about .5" before getting warped, stripped and then stuck in the wood. Tried it w/ several screws. Any idea what's going on?

aeray (author)  bananafrog3 months ago
Any number of things. One, cheapo screws. Two, Phillips head. Three, a knot in the lumber.

My first suspicion is cheapo screws, though. You could try ceramic-coated exterior-grade screws, which are a bit more expensive but generally of better quality.

Let me know how it goes.
hobotraveler4 months ago
Thanks, I am in Kara, Togo West Africa, and need to buy a bed. The locals sell ready to go frames that have the mattress at 14 inches high. This makes getting in and out of a bed more difficult, especially for large people. I believe the design of the legs of your bed is as strong as possible, for the least amount of wood. I have lived in over 1000 hotels, and storage under a bed is extremely valuable in a small hotel room. Plus this type of bed makes flipping a mattress, and cleaning underneath better. On a strange note, mosquitoes hide under bed, along with cockroaches, etc. Therefore this is another great reason for platform beds. Thanks, what I love about instructables is that they use appropriate ideas, not make work ideas. Andy Graham in Kara, Togo
aeray (author)  hobotraveler4 months ago
Glad you like it. My extensive travels in Australia and Central America did inform the design, I must admit.

Have you built one? Are you going to?
I am going to have three made, two doubles and one single bed size. I think I want the top of the platform at 20 inches high.

What I needed was the photos, I will have them printed today at the cyber cafe. Then show them to a carpenter, get a price, then have them make one as the model, and then do the other two after I am sure he is with the program. Herein is the problem, I can give exact measurement, drawings, etc. and, they will ignore. Truly the photo work 50 times better than a drawing.

I may just have them make some legs, then tell them to connect to a platform, I feel they can get the platform adequate, it is the legs strength that I worry about. I do not want the bed wiggling or falling. Your L design of legs, makes a gusset in the end, diagonal supports to solve the problem of rectangles.

I am also working on a malaria project, and will incorporate into the bed the ability to hang a mosquito net. More or less this platform type of bed will minimize rips in bed nets. Their present design is horrible.

What Africa needs to stop malaria is crews of good carpenters who understand building. For example, many houses are hot because they do not ventilate the dead air space of the roof. Simple, simple problems to solve, but not solved.

People do not use bed nets because they are hot, but I do not blame them, the house designs here are some of the worst on the planet.

I will put up a photo when done.
aeray (author)  hobotraveler4 months ago
Hey, I run up against all types of construction ignorance here in the US too. "No, I'm not going to do it any other way than the way my dad and his daddy before him did it". It is pervasive here, and cripples the building trades. Another example: I was recently in Suzhou, China, where it snows and is regularly below freezing. Buildings are almost always uninsulated masonry construction, and have no central heating. Why are they uninsulated? "If it worked here, we already would have thought of it, hundreds of years ago. Obviously, if it worked here, we would already be doing it. Insulation will not work in Suzhou." End of discussion. This kind of thinking pisses me off to no end. Best wishes, and best of luck.
lothbrok4 months ago
Hi. May sound like a dumb question, but can the measures be altered to fit a king-sized futon mattress? (I have an oversized futon mattress that's 81'' x 81'', near as I can tell). Would this design still be structurally sound at that size, or do I need to brace it with a rail down the middle? I love the look, but having 2' of mattress hanging off the sides won't do me much good if I build it to the current specs. Thanks! :)
lunicycle5 months ago
Thanks - This was the first piece of furniture I have ever made.

My son’s room is very small and was looking for a frame that would take up no more space than the mattress. No one seems to make one so ended up here. Decided initially that I would do it without laths overhanging but fortunately, see below, changed my mind in order to accommodate a wall socket without making the bed ridiculously high. I used slight variations on timber sizes based on what my local DIY shop had in planed timber and got them to cut the lengths. The other variation I made was to use 70 mm solid square legs but this did mean I had to check out how the screws worked on the corners, screws don’t screw into screws! To check this out I used a bit of free software called FreeCAD which I managed to put the design on to very quickly, see picture.

When we, my son helped me, finished the bed it was solid as a rock but with one problem. I had sized it to the nominal size of the mattress without realising that mattresses don’t have square corners, well at least his doesn't, so off with the bottom lath and out with a jig saw and sander to put a ¼ ellipse on the offending corner, see picture.

This bed is so solid and comfortable; it was the cheapest but the best in the house and I am now thinking about building a double for my wife and me. – Thanks again.
aeray (author)  lunicycle5 months ago
Looks good, and thanks for the photos.
Pictures are here. For some reason Chrome wouldn't let me add them so swapped to IE.
bed design.jpgIMG_6989.JPG
kenwolf5 months ago
I am a Home Improvement Contractor and my 22 year old Daughter asked me to build a platform bed for her. My first design ideas were much more complicated and expensive than yours. She sent me a link to your site, and the simplicity and function of your design will save me a lot of work. I'll let you know how it come out.
aeray (author)  kenwolf5 months ago
Yep, I had a few other designs worked out, but I needed a bed, quick. Let me know how yours turns out.
edel5 months ago
So we made bed two today, The first one I made (about a year ago) I had shortened the legs, this one was made as per the plans above, and it is mad high!..,,my mattress is fairly thick and I am tall, but a small family could camp out underneath. I am also a little disappointed that this one squeaks and the first one didn't but the first one is in a space that is boundaried on three sides, so perhaps that prevents some movement and squeaks.

I could only get decking screws that had a torc head, which were great (until I hit knots in the wood and they camed out..) the rest were the usual crappy phillips..

Tomorrow I am going to cut about 6 inches off the legs and add a few more screws to tighten everything up.

I added a 4x1 rail all along one side, to finish off the sides, to stop me adding to my collection of bruises, The bed is against a wall and so I pulled the first and last slat out by about 3mm, and screwed the rail to these.. (to avoid squeaks!)..

however it is still a brilliant project, easy (especially if you have someone else to cut the wood) ...thanks again aeray
aeray (author)  edel5 months ago
Sounds good. Sometimes it helps to retighten all of the screws after using the bed for a few days, especially if the lumber was stored outdoors (even covered) and particularly if you have forced air or electric radiator heat.
edel aeray5 months ago
Will do, thanks for that. I still haven't chopped it it is currently known as 'the bed in the clouds'..

it very comfortable and probably leads to lofty thoughts.

Thanks for the tip re tightening the screws. I actually ended up using unfinished 4x2 as my local hardware store didn't stock it (and they were so much cheaper than the chain stores) their 'rough' 4x2 was plenty good enough for this project and has been stored outside, and then in my house for a couple of weeks, but not in an area of much heat, so I will remember to tighten everything up over the next while.

also just to let you know the extra 4x1 'rail' I put on the side, works perfectly for this bruises!
jill205 months ago
Thanks for this wonderful instructable! After checking 3 independent hardware stores and 2 big box stores, the only non-Phillips head screws I can find are 8's rather than 10's. Would that be a major problem?
aeray (author)  jill205 months ago
For the 2" screws, #8 should be fine. For the 3" screws though, I'd size them up to #12, instead of down to #8.
rush2ady5 months ago
Hi, I love this design (the minimalism appeals to me). However, my husband seems quite taken by the nomad furniture I've made (bookshelves, large desk) and now wants everything to be collapsible for easy moving. I'm thinking of ways to modify this to come apart more easily. Maybe a couple large bolts instead of screws to attach the side and foot rails together, and maybe heavy duty velcro to attach the slats instead of screwing them on? And I want shorter legs, which I would screw half the leg piece to the side rail, the other half to foot rail.
What's your opinion--will this work? Or do you have a suggestion of a different design altogether? I've looked around online, but really wanted to use the 12' 2x4s now that I have them, rather than 1xwhatevers to make a mortar/tenon or interlocking design.
aeray (author)  rush2ady5 months ago
Taking out the screws only takes 2-3 minutes using a drill, so it is already fairly nomadic. I've moved ours three times now, and disassembled and reassembled it more times than that.

The Velcro is an interesting idea, and would probably work, but you would lose most of the shear strength along the horizontal plane; the bed could "go rhombus". Similarly, the two pieces that form each leg need to be attached to each other for strength.

I'm interested to hear (and see) what you come up with; keep me informed.
rush2ady aeray5 months ago
Thanks for your quick reply! It helps to know it comes apart and is put together again easily . In which case, I'll use screws everywhere, keeping the same design, but maybe bolts instead of the 3" screws to attach the rails together. I'll take pictures if I do modify.
#10 stardrive screws are proving hard to find, my local lumber yard didn't have them, and Lowe's didn't have them in the correct length (and they had were "exterior"). I'll have to order online. I know once I have everything, this will be a quick build. Thanks again for the great, simple design.
aeray (author)  rush2ady5 months ago
No problem. Exterior grade screws are fine to use, they are just very slightly more expensive. Bolts are fine, too, but predrill carefully. I don't actually use lag bolts much anymore, I far prefer hybrid bolt/screw fasteners like these, which would be quite appropriate for your application.
elizakae6 months ago
Has anyone done the calculations for a twin-size bed frame like this/built a twin-size frame like this? I'd like to still keep the lumber waste minimal.
eephotog6 months ago
I built a full sized version of this about 2 years ago, and it was great, but the legs haven't held up well after a couple of moves, removal, and reattachment. I did have slightly longer legs (24") , and slightly shorter slats than with the queen. The legs all wobble a bit now, and one of the slats cracked. (At a knot though)

I'm planning on building another for a queen sized, but want to maintain the taller height. I'd like to make the legs sturdier, and easier to remove/reattach, as well as adding a center support to prevent some sag I got. Any advice?

My initial thoughts were to step up to 1x6 or 1x8 for the legs, to provide a wider base and wider attachment to the bed, and possibly using bolts+washers instead of screws to keep the joint strong after disassembly.
aeray (author)  eephotog6 months ago
I'd use 2x4s for the legs, and 3-1/2" x 3/8" through bolts with washers on both sides. 3 per leg (12 total) should be enough.

Is the sag just in the slats, or is it in the side rails? Did you build the 2x4 section the same size as the queen version and just shorten the slats?
eephotog aeray6 months ago
The sag is just in the slats. The 2x4 section is the same as for the queen, and just shortened the slats. The slats only sag significantly with two people on the bed, but they don't seem to handle a point load well.

The mattress I'm getting needs a somewhat closer slat spacing as well, so I was thinking either more slats or a center brace to mitigate the bowing.

Thanks for the quick response by the way, there are an impressive number of comments in this thread.
aeray (author)  eephotog6 months ago
I'd just use more slats. Longer slats (like on the queen) give a more advantageous cantilever as well since the loads are balanced a bit better.

I published this five years ago, and it has 800,000 views, but I only get a few comments a week on average, so I can keep up.
emichael iii6 months ago
Hey, it's October 2013, and most these comments are old, but anywho, I found your plans, loved 'em, made some SLIGHT modifications if anyone new comes along and wants to try, total lumber cost at home depot was about $32 but I opened a new account and got 10% off, so it helped, the 2" wood screws came in Phillips/squarebit(I used square) the 3" came in torx(bit included).
here's what I did different- for people wanting a beefier frame, and oh yea, a LOT taller:
I just got 5- 14' 1x4's cut 15 at 4'7(like yours, just more of them) so instead of 11 slats, there's 15(a 2x4 block between each one provides "almost" perfect spacing, I had to improvise the last 3 with another 1/4" each but I chose that as the head(where the pillows will be, etc) i'm sure 11 slats are supportive enough, but this 15 makes a 6'3/260lb guy like myself feel good about it!
got the same 2-10' 2x4s for the frame(4'0 and 5'11")
but also a 12' 2x4 cut into 6 pieces 1'11"- but I must warn you, these legs make the bed REALLY tall, you might wanna go with 1'9"
I put 1 leg in each corner(long side of leg to short side of frame) and 1 leg in the middle section of each long piece of frame for some side support.
emichael iii6 months ago
Hey, it's October 2013, and most these comments are old, but anywho, I found your plans, loved 'em, made some SLIGHT modifications if anyone new comes along and wants to try, total lumber cost at home depot was about $32 but I opened a new account and got 10% off, so it helped, the 2" wood screws came in Phillips/squarebit(I used square) the 3" came in torx(bit included).
here's what I did different- for people wanting a beefier frame, and oh yea, a LOT taller:
I just got 5- 14' 1x4's cut 15 at 4'7(like yours, just more of them) so instead of 11 slats, there's 15(a 2x4 block between each one provides "almost" perfect spacing, I had to improvise the last 3 with another 1/4" each but I chose that as the head(where the pillows will be, etc) i'm sure 11 slats are supportive enough, but this 15 makes a 6'3/260lb guy like myself feel good about it!
got the same 2-10' 2x4s for the frame(4'0 and 5'11")
but also a 12' 2x4 cut into 6 pieces 1'11"- but I must warn you, these legs make the bed REALLY tall, you might wanna go with 1'9"
I put 1 leg in each corner(long side of leg to short side of frame) and 1 leg in the middle section of each long piece of frame for some side support.
Hey, it's October 2013, and most these comments are old, but anywho, I found your plans, loved 'em, made some SLIGHT modifications if anyone new comes along and wants to try, total lumber cost at home depot was about $32 but I opened a new account and got 10% off, so it helped, the 2" wood screws came in Phillips/squarebit(I used square) the 3" came in torx(bit included).
here's what I did different- for people wanting a beefier frame, and oh yea, a LOT taller:
I just got 5- 14' 1x4's cut 15 at 4'7(like yours, just more of them) so instead of 11 slats, there's 15(a 2x4 block between each one provides "almost" perfect spacing, I had to improvise the last 3 with another 1/4" each but I chose that as the head(where the pillows will be, etc) i'm sure 11 slats are supportive enough, but this 15 makes a 6'3/260lb guy like myself feel good about it!
got the same 2-10' 2x4s for the frame(4'0 and 5'11")
but also a 12' 2x4 cut into 6 pieces 1'11"- but I must warn you, these legs make the bed REALLY tall, you might wanna go with 1'9"
I put 1 leg in each corner(long side of leg to short side of frame) and 1 leg in the middle section of each long piece of frame for some side support.
NikDan106 months ago
I want to build this bed but in a king size- what would the measurements be? This is an awesome idea.
kriskross77 months ago
Hello, I am currently living in South Africa and the two types of wood that are easily available are simply pine and 'hardwood'. Would pine be sufficient for the long pieces, since hardwood is significantly more expensive? Should I reinforce it down the middle? Thanks!
aeray (author)  kriskross77 months ago
Pine should be fine. I assume it is radiata pine. Pick nice, even grained boards with few or no knots, and it shouldn't be a problem.
Elmona7 months ago
Do you think it would work to put an air mattress on top of this? Wasn't sure if it would slide off or not be stable for some reason. Also, would it be really complicated to make this frame fold up (just in half)? I'm looking to provide a sleeping space for guests that's nicer than an air mattress on the floor but don't want it up all the time as I use the room for other things. I'm not handy at all but you are really tempting me to try this!
aeray (author)  Elmona7 months ago
Folding in half would be tough, but it is easy to lean it up against a wall. As for the mattress sliding, a few strips of rubberized shelf liner will take care of that.
edel7 months ago
I am back to this instructable because I am planning on making two more, the first one turned out great. I have moved into a new place, mon-fri, to avoid a commute and money is tight, but the two mattresses on the floor are being attacked my henious dust bunnies, so this is a critical project...a few questions.

I want to extend the length of the bed to run the full width of the room (only another foot or so) I assume that this won't be a problem, My intention is to build bookshelves onto the end of the bed, I could extend the bed with the end legs under the bookshelves, or build a seperate bookshelf unit, with legs, so that the shelves start on a level with the top of the mattress...which would you think is better?

the other question is, if I wanted to add a side piece to 'join up' the edges of the slats (I am incredibly clumsy and have already given myself a few bruises)..would I effectively make a large rectangle and screw it to a few slats?

thanks again for this brilliant instructable

AniStareva7 months ago
Hello there, I desperately need to build this bed, but the problem is I´m from Europe and do not understand the measurements of the pieces given above. I would be realy gratefull if someone here could help me and give me more "mathematical" measurments of the pieces, as for example (x)= lenght, (y)= width and (z)= heiht. Inches or centimeters wouldn´t be important, as convert between them is quite easy. OK, thanks in advance.
aeray (author)  AniStareva7 months ago
It is stupid, but in the US, a "2x4" is 1-1/2 inches thick, 3-1/2 inches wide, and whatever length you specify, in 2 foot increments. A "1x4" is 3/4 of an inch thick, 3-1/2 inches wide, and whatever length you specify, in two foot increments.
AniStareva aeray7 months ago
Thank you so much Aeray! Greetings ;)
aeray (author)  AniStareva7 months ago
Hopefully I answer your question adequately. Enjoy the project.

In the US, the stated size of lumber refers to its dimension before it is dried and planed. 1x is 1/4" thinner than the stated dimension, and 2x and larger is 1/2" thinner. Width is confusing, too. 2, 4, and 6" boards are 1/2" narrower, and 8, 10, and 12" boards are 3/4" narrower.
AlexandreZ7 months ago
I already had a boxspring which I did not want to throw away. Putting a bunch of slats in the middle felt wasteful, (the boxspring already has a bunch of slats) so I took your design as a basis and modified it. Basically, I took the frame and added a 2x4 in the middle. The end result: all the parts of my boxspring which use to sit on the floor sit on a 2x4. 4 screws attach the boxspring to the frame. (Mostly because it's now past midnight and I need to actually use the bed and I don't expect huge sheering forces parrellel to the mattress)

Of course, the end result is also that a family of 4 can live under my bed and I need to buy a step-ladder to climb on the bed. I think I'm going to salvage the slats from the boxspring (It's white pine and poorly engineered, but the slats have mostly held up for the past 3 years) and throw the rest of the boxspring away to take the bed down 8 inches. Then, I might cut another 2 inches off the legs, because everything I want to store there would still fit comfortably. (But that last one sounds like a lot of work, so I'll see how far getting rid of the boxspring gets me...)

I got home depot to cut the wood for free which was nice. (though I would suggest calling ahead. I went through 3 whose saw was broken) The whole build took me close to 4 hours. However, a good 2.5 hours of those were recharging the old drill I depended upon. (Had to recharge it 4 times) This is roughly my first project of this type. It really built my confidence and I expect the next project isn't far down the pipeline. (I need a new sword rack and traditional japanese tea tray) So thanks a lot for the recipe. (Not to mention thanks for my soon to be much less encumbered apartment...)
kmehl047 months ago
I just finished mine today. Same dimensions, but I'm using a full sized mattress so there's less of an overhang. Also only needed two legs because there is a sturdy wooden ledge running the length of one wall in my bedroom. Lumber costs were closer to $80 in my neck of the woods (NorCal). Still, a nice beginner project for me.
socon8iv8 months ago
Made this platform today. All in, purchasing everything from a big box store (no other choice) it cost $49 and that included the screws, lumber, square and countersink. I don't own a saw (this is my first "major" project) so that price also includes the cost to cut. Also, I'm exceptionally clumsy so I didn't trust myself with a saw, :-) Had to make some adjustments because big box didn't carry the 1x4 in 14' but the only thing it affected was the height, which is still pretty good.

I've baked cookies that were more complex than this platform bed!! I was stunned, amazing, flabbergasted at how easy it was!! It took 2 1/2 hours because I pre-drilled and we modified to accommodate an old bookshelf headboard we had in the garage.

You are WONDERFUL for making these instructions so easy to follow! I'll be doing another next weekend.
aeray (author)  socon8iv8 months ago
Thanks. I'd like to see pictures with the headboard.
ndanderson8 months ago
Thanks a lot for posting these plans! Built this over the weekend. My only modification was using #9 screws since #10s weren't available in the right lenghts. I hope that won't make much of a difference. This was my first time building much of anything, but it all came together beautifully. I did have problems with the 1x4s splitting when making the legs, but I imagine pre-drilling the holes would have helped.

I really love the simple, functional style of this bed -- do you have any recommendations for books (or other instructables) that talk about building furniture in a similar way? Now that I know I'm capable of building something like this, I also want to build a desk, a hanging window planter, and a closet storage unit. Thanks again!
aeray (author)  ndanderson8 months ago
I'm glad it worked out for you. I do have a few more instructables like this. Click on my user image or search for my user name to see the others. One is for a table that could be used as a desk, and another is for a shelving system that could be modified to work in a closet.

There are some old books titled "Nomadic Furniture" (1 and 2) that I read as a kid which may have inspired my interest in this kind of thing.
ndanderson aeray8 months ago
Thanks a lot for the suggestions! Just what I was looking for.
cdwilson338 months ago
Did it thanks my legs are different because I had scrap 2x6
13, 4:26 PM.jpg13, 4:26 PM.jpg
I wanted to make it a loft type bed if that's possible.. Maybe 3 1/2 feet tall. I was wondering if I should use thicker wood and anything more to make it more stable
aeray (author)  Pintrest lover8 months ago
Same dimensions, but but don't make it over 4' tall.
I wanted to make it a loft type bed I wanted to make it 3 1/2 feet tall if that's possible. Do I use the same wood off something thicker?
aeray (author)  Pintrest lover8 months ago
Same dimensions, but don't go over 4' tall.
bSage9 months ago
I am going to build a loft platform for my bed. I like the simplicity of this design, would I need to add things to make this more stable at seven feet up?
jillutrup9 months ago
This looks like a fantastic project for my 14 year old's room. I apologize if I've missed them in the comments, but are the exact measurements and items to purchase available for a twin bed?
aeray (author)  jillutrup9 months ago
Subtract 20" from the shorter 2x4s, and from the slats. Subtract 5" from the longer 2x4s, and omit one slat.
spitzer339 months ago
i built this bed about a year ago for my full sized mattress. it worked great. i changed the width of the cross beam to 3'6", the original queen sized instructions call for a 4' 2x4.

Anyway, here's my dilemna. i've updated to a queen mattress and i made these modification:

I just added longer slats, but didn't change the width. I'm wondering if this will compromise something (comfort? safety?) because the slats now hang further off from the frame (3" on each side) than they would had i built the queen size bed to begin with. Any insight is much appreciated!
aeray (author)  spitzer339 months ago
Depending on your weight, and the weight of the mattress, it may be a little tippy when you sit on the edge. Structurally, it should be fine.
This may have already been asked but would you mind updating with measurements and required lumber for a king size? Also would I need a board running down the center for a king size?
aeray (author)  dingodingodango10 months ago
It is posted several times in the comments, and, yes, a center board is recommended.
Vagabond4411 months ago
I want to thank you so much for this design, the ease of your steps, and your encouraging and helpful comments, all of which, the comments, that is, I read through entirely several times. We chose to make the full size frame, and cut slats down accordingly, and purchased our lumber at the local lumber yard, who were very helpful, for a total cost of 45.60. They did not have the 14 ft., so we reconfigured, and they were nice enough to cut the wood as we could not get it into the car. I took photographs of the process, and will post them and its "final reveal" when it's dressed up and ready for its photo shoot. Again, I thank you so much for such a well thought out design, and your helpful comments and how to's. Oh, we went with Spax screws which worked very well and were 7.97 a box at Home Depot.

My son built it, and is excited to build one for himself, designing some end tables, or other additions. Thanks for a wonderful family project.
nicholaix1 year ago
Don't feel bad Christy in Montana, I couldn't get these legs together either! I read through the comments and looked through my scraps for some 4x4's and sure enough I had four from another project that were close in measure. If you're like me, holding the drill correctly and the pieces at the same time is almost impossible! My tool collection is adequate but doesn't stretch to many clamps etc!
Other than that the project went together like a dream. I liked it so much I am making one for me tomorrow. My cost for the queen size was $72.50. I had the screws already but Home Depot only had #2 wood so wee bit more expensive. The boys at home depot made all the cuts for me for free because they were dying of boredom. Great beginner project, even for us single women out there. Thanks a ton for these fabulous plans.
nicholaix1 year ago
I want to build this for someone who is 6'3" and 250 lbs. Should I do any extra supports or a cross brace in the middle for a queen size bed? He's not gentle on wooden furniture but this bed would be perfect and fit my budget. I plan to modify it just a tad to attach his existing headboard and replace the bed frame which is coming apart. Thanks for making simple furniture plans I can make on a limited budget.
aeray (author)  nicholaix1 year ago
I'm 6'5" and 255 and my wife and I have been using the same one for years now (I am the author).
TXTIGER1 year ago
Great Project. Thank you.

I plan to replace the upper part of a trundle bed with this platform, but would still like to be able to slide the lower part of the trundle underneath. Before doing so, can you please let me know what the dimensions are inside the legs, on the long side?

Thank you
aeray (author)  TXTIGER1 year ago
5'-4" or 5'-2-1/2" depending on how you orient the legs. The legs aren't symmetrical, so they can be installed in two orientations.
jtan221 year ago
Well with good weather i finally went to the lumber store and got my materials. The only problem that I had is mis-calculation of 1 x4's because my store didn't have 14 footers, so I had to recalculate and missed by a couple boards. No biggie. It's built, got my mattress on and will sleep good tonight! I really like how I can hide all my junk underneath!.
gerokadon1 year ago
The measurements you made saved me a lot time! Thank you!

I went to home depot and spent $45 on materials, including the stain. The longest lengths they had for the 1x4's were 12', so I opt for the 10' to save material on the 4'7" slats. This took me 4 hours to do since I predrilled everything plus waited for the stain/seal to dry.

bed platform.JPG
kmckown1 year ago
I really like this, and after reading 480 of the comment had to commend you on your patience. lol

Here in Mexico where I am living there is a shop that sells beds that look almost the same. I will have to try to get a picture of them. They are a lot shorter and I have thought many times that I would like one but with longer legs. I would love to make one, but here am not sure where I could find decent wood and tools. I definitely will be looking now that I have your easy plans.
Thanks a million for this instructable! I finally got around to building my son his bed... he'll be 3 this month but sleeps on a queen sized bed because he moves around so much. He helped me make and absolutely loves it! I couldn't believe it was level when I turned it over... woo-hoo! This was only my 2nd ever wood working project. I made the legs only 10" from the ground so it wouldn't be too high for him in case he does roll off it. Thanks for the tutorial.... we really appreciate your time and work! :o)
aeray (author)  CraftyGemini1 year ago
edel1 year ago
Last weekend, I took apart a shelving unit and made a bed base for an existing mattress...I didnt like it, it was too flimsy, so I went online and found your plans...and this weekend I made one!...turns out that making a bed is a surefire recipe for happiness. I am a 45 year old woman and it took me about 2 or so hours. I had to adjust measurements a bit as a double mattress here (ireland) is about 2'' shorter and narrower than the measurements that you have.

Also the board lengths available here are in meters (although the LXW are in inches..go figure!) I had to make a few adjustments, the 4x2 was only available in 5.4m meter lengths, too short for all four sides. so I made one of the sides from 4.5x1.5 and used the excess of that board for some slats, the thicker two slats were at top and bottom, and with the mattress the thickness difference is imperceptible.

Just wondering why you say that predrilling holes was not necessary, I predrilled everything, not being as strong as your average man, I find it a lot easier to make sure that screws go in straight and tight, when it is predrilled. Plus my builders suppliers only had phillips posidrive, so predrilling made me less likely to cam them out (and none did!)

All in all it cost me approx 50e (about $64)

thank you so so much for taking the time to post this instructable.

Off now to make some underbed storage boxes from the wood I used last weekend...I have castors!
aeray (author)  edel1 year ago
Good to hear from someone outside the US and Canada. Yep, lumber dimensioning can be weird; I worked in Honduras for a bit, and we used feet, meters, and a local unit that was just less than a meter. All at once. Pre drilling was a good call since you had to use the dreaded Phillips.
I made this bed last weekend to get my wife and I up off the floor. We recently moved and are using our old bedroom furniture in the guest room. We couldn't be happier. The bed is sturdy and provides a lot of storage space. I was able to build a full (double) size bed for $61, including the purchase of a countersink bit. I had to buy the lumber from a big box store. I'm sure it could have been cheaper, if I had convenient access to a lumber yard.

Thank you so much for posting these plans.
aeray (author)  davidsidlinger1 year ago
Glad it worked for you.
Paulapower1 year ago
I made this last night in an hour for my son's room. (Queen mattress) I had Home Hardware precut my lumber and shortened the legs. Used the Robertson for the whole project. Had to predrill legs to avoid splitting. Cost including lumber and screws was 29 dollars. I have to make one for the twin bed next so will use up the rest of the screws
aeray (author)  Paulapower1 year ago
Looks good. Thanks for the photos.
mrsmicah1 year ago
Hubby and I made a queen size bed a couple years ago for our Tempurpedic mattress. LOVE IT! Last year we made a twin size for one of our girls. (We re-used slats from clean pallets.) This weekend we'll be making another twin size for the boy. After that one is complete we are moving on to replace our queen with a KING!!!

Here's pics of the queen. I covered the tops of the slats with thick fabric just because I wanted to. I added a skirt and stapled it to the edges of the slats. I love all the storage underneath. Love how sturdy it is (we did add a couple extra pieces here and there for extra stability). Love the height!!! It makes for such a beautiful bed!

I'll try to post pics of the king size once we get it done. And maybe the kids if their beds are ever neat enough to photo!

Thanks so so much for this instructable!

(I don't know why but it looks like my photos loaded 2x... sorry!!)
aeray (author)  mrsmicah1 year ago
Looks good. You should consider covering the slats with plastic, or sealing them, as some pallets are treated with fairly nasty chemicals. Many aren't, though.
HSue1 year ago
This is a terrific, simple design. I made a twin size version but modified the top & bottom overhang to accommodate a wrought iron head and foot board that I loved. I just simply bolted them to the 2x4's. This was a great solution to buying metal rails & a box spring, much cheaper and easy to disassemble if needed. I really didn't need to make the legs but I feel they reinforce the stability of the bed.
aeray (author)  HSue1 year ago
Glad it worked for you. Pics would be great, especially since you modded it.
Just recently finished the queen size bed. The headboard is constructed from salvaged cable spool wood I found in the desert. Love this thing! Thanks Andy!
aeray (author)  mhendrickson1 year ago
Congrats on a trifecta. You are the first I'm aware of.
elindsey21 year ago
I read all the comments, and then went ahead and made this using the #8 screws where 2" screws were called for. So far it seems very sturdy. I made the original queen-sized version and stained it using Varathane ebony, and then added a coat of polyurethane (I dislike the look of unfinished wood.)

I'm working on a freestanding headboard project for this. We rent, so I can't bolt the headboard to the wall.

Thanks for this Instructable! I now have the base knowledge and confidence to try some of the other woodworking projects (like the shelves or the table!)
aeray (author)  elindsey21 year ago
Thanks for the photos. Looks good. I don't know how you went about it here, but if you build the table or shelves, stain and finish the parts before assembly.
sdreiling1 year ago
Aeray, I love your plans, the simple efficient design, & the reasonable price! (single mom) Do you have any ideas about a full-sized loft bed (desk/homework area underneath)? I have been looking and everything I have found is either very overpriced or requires more tools and/or skill than I have.
tallnproud1 year ago
This was my first real wood-working project that I've done, and I loved it. Like many other commenters, I shortened the legs a bit so that our kids would be able to safely dismount, but that was it. Your instructions are clear and easy to understand. The pictures really add a layer of clarity that make it all pretty much foolproof.

I had four real takeaways from the project that I thought I'd share:
1) I have adopted your disdain for Phillips head screws after trying to drive in the first 3" screw and stripping it to kingdom come. I picked up a pack of torx head screws and didn't have any problems the rest of the project.
2) Again, following your advice, I tried using a local, privately-owned lumber yard instead of Home Depot or Lowes. I saved 50% by using the local yard.
3) I bought a speedsquare for this project, and it was worth its weight in, um... aluminum? I hadn't used one before but won't ever do a project without one.
aeray (author)  tallnproud1 year ago
Glad you enjoyed it. Nice drawers. Speed squares are usually some kind of crappy pot metal, but sometimes aluminum or plastic. What was your fourth takeaway?
elindsey21 year ago
Hi there. Great Instructable! I am planning on building this bedframe very soon, but I am unable to find #10 2-inch screws at any of my local hardware stores. Will #8s do? Should I use an extra screw when attaching the legs if I use the #8 screws?
Built this design today exactly as illustrated except I used some slightly longer screws in places because I had them. Lumber costs set me back $47 here in the mountains of Colorado, very affordable. Can't believe how stable this bed is! In addition the under bed storage has clearance for all of our large rubber maid tubs.

Thanks again! I highly recommend this design.
aeray (author)  takenreality1 year ago
Thanks, glad you like it.
Built this design today exactly as illustrated except I used some slightly longer screws in places because I had them. Lumber costs set me back $47 here in the mountains of Colorado, very affordable. Can't believe how stable this bed is! In addition the under bed storage has clearance for all of our large rubber maid tubs.

Thanks again! I highly recommend this design.
Build this design today exactly as illustrated except I used some slightly longer screws in places because I had them. Lumber costs set me back $47 here in the mountains of Colorado, very affordable. Can't believe how stable this bed is! In addition the under bed storage has clearance for all of our large rubber maid tubs.

Thanks again! I highly recommend this design.
Jean9f1 year ago
I'm in love... with your plans, that is. I was looking for a frame plan that I could use as a starting point to modify and make a toddler bed for my granddaughter's 2nd birthday. Can't stand those plastic or metal ones that bend if an adult sits on it, which is required when reading bedtime stories. Apart from lowering it a little and sizing it to fit a crib mattress, I'm going to put a half round piece of molding spanning across the ends of the slats on one side, just to prevent possible future under-the-bed exploring mishaps (the other side will be against the wall). Can't wait to start! I'll post dimensions when I do it.
aeray (author)  Jean9f1 year ago
Glad you're excited about it. Post pics with the dimensions .
sfdenson1 year ago
I really want to try this for my daughter, however, has anyone made bunk beds using this concept??? Please let me know. Thanks
DavidAlex1 year ago
Thanks for the instructable! I modified the design by building it on 2x8s, then getting it up of the floor with leftover 1x4. The height is right for me, and I don't have any storage needs so it's perfect.
new bed-2138.jpg
I feel like an idiot because I can't seem to construct the legs in Step 6! :( I try to place the 1x4s as shown in the picture, and they just slide apart. I try to hold the boards at a 90 degree angle with my left hand while holding the screwdriver drill in my right hand, and it doesn't go in straight. When it goes in (IF it goes in for me, I mean), it splits the board on the other side. What am I doing wrong? What technique am I not understanding in this step? Should I use 2x4s instead of 1x4s for the legs and use more 3" #10 screws? Everything was going fine for me until Step 6. Help!

I am so happy to find these plans, though. It is exactly what I am looking for!
aeray (author)  christy in montana1 year ago
It's good to see a fellow Montanan on here.
Have a helper hold the boards for you, or use two small clamps to keep them aligned. I may have an easier time with things like this because I have big hands.
To prevent the splitting, try predrilling for the screws, just like you did on the 2x4s.
Let me know if you still have problems.
Thanks for the fast response, aeray! :) This is such an awesome project. I'm looking forward to needing a step stool to get in and out of bed. lol

I'll following your advice, fellow Montanan!
I see comments where other people have made king size beds using this plan... But don't see any dimensions for a California king. Could you help me figure that out? And also, would I need to add a fifth leg in the center since it is so large?
soleil1331 year ago
This is fantastic since I've been looking for high beds, so thank you so much!

I've read through the comments and did have some questions. I want to make this bed frame for a full mattress, but with longer legs; If I use 34" or 36" legs do I need to add some additional reinforcements, or just follow the rest of the directions as is? (I know you've answered this for a few people already, but I'm wondering if the 36" length will structurally compromise the bed due to its height)

I'm also the type of person to leap into bed rather than calmly sitting on it, so I'm wondering if it'd be safer to add the center support beam.

aeray (author)  soleil1331 year ago
Just add some diagonal bracing to the legs, in both directions.
This tutorial is fantastic. Do you have any recommendations for making a frame for a mattress with a boxspring? I wouldn't mind using just the mattress since it is a pillowtop and has a good height too it but, since it's a Cal King, finding a place to store the box might be problematic. I currently have a sleigh bed style that takes up way to much space and am looking for a cost-effective, space-saving alternative.
sami2701 year ago
Is this a pretty sturdy frame? It looks as if it is, but I thought I would ask.
aeray (author)  sami2701 year ago
My king sized bed frame measures almost 4' from top of mattress! I know these pictures may make it seem like I over did it but there was a lot of wobble at that height. Now it's solid as a rock and I can watch the sun setting over the river from my bed in the evenings! Thanks for the plans & support Aeray!!
Aloha from Kauai!

I'm so excited for this project! I plan to push the limits of your amazing design.

I have a king sized mattress dimensions: 79" x 70". So, I'm planning to make the finished frame 76" x 65" (instead of 55") to account for the extra width - easy enough.

Here's the kicker - I want to make the best use of my small "tree house" space - the big windows that overlook the river/sunset start about 47" up from the floor. I want to build the frame so that the top of the mattress is in line with the windows/ view. To do this I plan to make the top of the frame 39" H. I already plan to use 1 x 6"'s instead of 1' x 4"'s.

Do you have any other suggestions for added support? I'm pretty light (160lbs.) and the mattress is fairly light & shallow for it's size. I anticipate potential girlfriend to weigh less then me.

How much additional lumber do you recommend I order to accommodate these bigger dimensions. I know I should be able to figure this out myself but I'm not good at calculating and not exactly sure how tall your queen design is.

Thank you for your help. I plan to donate when all is said & done. Also to share photos. I'll probably have to put in a small ladder to accommodate any shorter visitors. Can't wait to share the finished product!



p.s. I've been living in a tent under a big tarp for the past few winters here so this is really exciting for me!!
aeray (author)  Green Pastures1 year ago
Add an extra long 2x4 down the centerline of the bed and attach a fifth leg to the center of it. To figure height: desired height -mattress thickness -1-1/2" = leg length.
Thank you Aeray!

How long are the legs in the queen sized frame the plans you posted are for? I suppose all I have to do to calculate how much extra lumber to buy is:

account for the extra length of the legs (plus a 5th leg), the extra 10" of width, and the extra 2x4 down center?

Thanks Again!


p.s. I've attached two "before" photo's of the proposed bed frame site. Please excuse the mess - just moved in :) I'll probably add a sheet of plywood to the head of bed frame - facing windows upstairs (shown above the shelves & to the right of the ladder in picture taken from "downstairs") - so that I can screw in some simple hangers for backpacks and outdoor gear. As you can see by the photos it's a small space and I have a lot of stuff so every little bit of extra storage will help!
Please excuse my lack of grammar and allow me to try again:

How long are the legs, from floor to bottom of bed platform, on the queen sized bed frame you posted plans for? I'm asking so I can accurately calculate how much extra lumber I'll need to buy for the taller legs I plan to use. I will also calculate for my bed frame (king size) being 10" wider and requiring and extra support 2" x 4" and a fifth leg in the center.

Thank you,


aeray (author)  Green Pastures1 year ago
The legs in my plans are 1'-9" long, and there is a 3/4" gap between the top of the legs and the bottom of the slats.
PurpleSky1 year ago
How do I adjust the plan for a TWIN XL (80" long) mattress? Can't wait to build this one!
aeray (author)  PurpleSky1 year ago
I would make the slats 36" long, and the shorter 2x4s 32". Everything else is the same.
Here is a picture of the bed I built for my son's foam mattress. We lowered the legs significantly since he is only 3 yrs old. I cut the legs at 10". My husband even falls asleep putting our son to sleep. He says it's so comfortable and keeps the foam mattress flat and firm. Thank you for this Instructable! This was my 2nd ever woodworking project. :o)
marlenek1 year ago
I don't know how , or why , but the materials that came home to build this were NOT cheap. Purchasing from the list , we have 91.00 wrapped up in this. I just hope it goes together well. I never seem to be able to score the same "cheap" or "affordable" as the websites say they do. It's discouraging.
aeray (author)  marlenek1 year ago
I published the several years ago, so prices may have changed a bit, but...

To keep your costs as low as possible:
1) go to the local, independent lumberyard, not a big box store.
2) buy bulk screws by the pound, not prepackage ones.
3) make sure you are getting #3 grade 1x lumber.

If you bought #1 lumber and a couple of 5# boxes of screws, $91.00 would be cheap.
tritten0071 year ago
I've scanned through a few pages of comments and am really stoked to give this a try. I'm wanting to build the platform for a couch in my playroom though, the dimensions I can handle, but do you think I will need anything extra for the weight of a couch versus just a mattress? It's a full couch, not a loveseat. Thanks in advance for the help!
aeray (author)  tritten0071 year ago
Probably not, but I'd recommend taking the legs off of the couch and building the 2x4 frame to the same dimensions as the base of the couch. If you want "floor space" in front of the couch, build a separate platform. Does this help, or have I misunderstood your question?
yankeebbq1 year ago
I needed some extra storage in the trailer I use to compete in bbq competitions. I took out the broken old futon and used your frame. Thanks for the plans.
aeray (author)  yankeebbq1 year ago
Thanks for the pics
bwobo1 year ago
Thanks for your work and info.

I had some 2x4s at my dispoasal, so I made the whole thing with them (Queen sized). With 8 10' sticks and a couple pieces of scrap to finish off a leg and a half or so I was able to make it basically identical. Slats were a tiny bit longer and legs were a few inches shorter (~17"), still enough to clear electrical outlets on the wall and store some bins (lower profile ones). In fact, I kind of like the height a little lower. Note though, there was more waste because of how the lengths worked out. Not significant, but certainly more than what you accomplished with your design.

I was able to get by with philips head screws, as I had some, but I also used an impact driver which makes a significant difference. And only had to throw a second battery on for the last two legs.

Pictures to come soon. I have a futon mattress, this is to raise it off the floor for a temporary apartment. The futon isn't incredibly thick and I would reccommend smaller spacing between slats if you are in the same boat I am. I plan on adding a few slats this weekend.
aeray (author)  bwobo1 year ago
Looking forward to the pics.
conheidi1 year ago
Just wanted to add yet another note of thanks. We found these plans when surfing around, looking for a reasonable trundle bed for our daughter's room. Trundles are often bulky with a high profile in the back, or they have a style we weren't going for--and they're expensive to boot. We wanted a very simple bed that we could slide a second mattress under. We made an extra long twin frame and shortened the legs some so that the mattress just slides under without a lot of extra space. It's perfect! Thank you!
aeray (author)  conheidi1 year ago
Glad you found it useful. Pics?
conheidi aeray1 year ago
Hope I'm not double-posting--having problems uploading the pictures. Only thing we'd do differently is make it wider as well as longer (we did that). We've solved it by just pulling it out from the wall a bit so the lower mattress doesn't show.
bed photo (1).jpgbec photo (2).jpg
aeray (author)  conheidi1 year ago
Looks good. Thanks.
curlyqlisa1 year ago
i want to make one, king-sized. what would the dimensions/cuts be for that size???thanks.
aeray (author)  curlyqlisa1 year ago
It is discussed several times in the comments.
rkidmike1 year ago
Thanks for the great instructable!! I finished the bed today, and will be painting it tomorrow. The one thing is, I didn't think ahead to how tall it would be with my mattress on it. If I want to shorten the legs, what is your recommendation on the method? Thanks!
aeray (author)  rkidmike1 year ago
Just lop 'em off.
ksl4131 year ago
This is just what my daughter is looking for to be used in a dorm room. How high can a twin be made without extra supports? I would consider legs from 4x4s for stability as often 2+ kids sitting on bed...any comment? thanks!
Bama2win1 year ago
Everyone makes this sound so "easy." I think my daughter and I are going to attempt this on our own. Everyone else is out of the country, and we want to re-do her small bedroom. I have been all over looking for something affordable that will not be too high;yet, high enough for storage underneath (like a dorm room bed). Needless to say, we were unable to find anything in town that doesn't cost hundreds or thousands. We will be making a twin size, and I think I will ask Lowe's to precut the boards for me because I am not very confident in my ability to use my husband's skillsaw. If I understand correctly, I should shorten the slats by 5". Is this correct?
aeray (author)  Bama2win1 year ago
Just shortening the slats is for a double bed. For a twin:

Slats- 36"
Shorter 2x4- 34"
Longer 2x4- 5'-7"

Should work. I'd shorten up the legs, also, to maybe 14", depending on how old your daughter is, and how thick the mattress is.
Bama2win aeray1 year ago
Yay! Thanks so much for your quick reply. My daughter is 15, and her mattress is 7" thick. We need height, so we can store some things underneath. I think we have decided to double this and make TWO. This will allow space for some of the extra teens that usually stay over. If we are able to accomplish this task, I will upload pics.
funverza1 year ago
Hi aeray:

This looks perfect. How would the dimensions change to make a twin bed?

aeray (author)  funverza1 year ago
Slats- 36"
Shorter 2x4- 34"
Longer 2x4- 5'-7"

You may want to shorten the legs as well; I'll leave that to you.
My husband and I built two twin size versions of this bed last year to get my two daughters beds up off the floor of the room they share. Once I converted the measurements over to twin, It was an easy build - so easy my husband could do it - he's a welder by trade and doesn't have the patience for wood. They turned out great and the height on the bed allowed me to put three large bins under each for my teen daughters to store their stuff. I bought purple sequined material and used a staple gun to attach it as a permanent bed skirt. Thank you for sharing this great plan!
Building the bed.jpgBeds.jpgbeds finished.jpg
I love this!! My daughter and I have been looking for something like this. I am a little concerned about converting this measurements myself. My husband is out of the country right now :( Is there anyway you could share your measurements with me?
aeray (author)  janebleu33862 years ago
Thanks for the photos.
pboulianne1 year ago
love this idea. does anyone have the specific measurements to make this in a double bed size rather than queen? my son would like to try it but we need to make it a 'no brainer'!
aeray (author)  pboulianne1 year ago
Everything else is the same, but make the slats 4" shorter.
Do you have any headboard suggestions? I want to do this bed and your book cases for my teenage son's room....
shellyZ1 year ago
do you think it would be possible to put a headboard on this bed? If I made the top of the bed flush?
I've been thinking about how do that to mine for a while and haven't quite come up with a retrofit I'm happy with yet.

One way would be to make the frame about four inches longer than necessary and use 4' or 5' 1x4s scabbed on the outside of the frame as supports and then fixing the headboard to that. You could also replace the head end legs with longer pieces but then you loose the support of that last slat and all your weight is shear force on the screws. That is potentially a bad day, though if you keep a lot of stuff under the bed you won't fall as far if the screws give out.

A simpler way (which just occurred to me) might be to make a box as wide as the mattress and as tall as you want and just screw that to the end of the frame. It only looks weird if you don't have blankets hanging far enough down to cover the "extra" legs...
Funny, I just ran across this, which would work quite nicely with this bed as well as others:
aeray (author)  shellyZ1 year ago
Sure. Or just do what hotels do: screw the headboard to the wall, not the bed.
I just ran across this instructable again and realized that I've had my platform bed almost three years and I haven't come back to thank you! It's a great write-up, and while I know enough to design a frame from scratch seeing this was the tipping point from "I could do that someday" to "Oh, that's easier than I thought. I can do that right now."

I posted a brief write-up and photos on my website a while ago, as well:
CliffyP1 year ago
I made this! It's pretty awesome! I just have a couple notes from my experience:

1) Aeray's little rant about using Torx or Robertson screws? I should have listened. I bought Phillips screws figuring "ah, it'll be fine," and it was not fine. I wasted a lot of time and screws on stripped screwheads.

2) 1'9" legs make for a TALL bed--nearly waist height!

3) The lack of any center support bothers me. It definitely holds one person securely but I'm concerned that when my partner sleeps over we could crack those little 1x4s. I think I'm going to go back and add a 2x4 down the center and extra legs supporting it so I feel a little safer.

4) Having a good electric screwdriver would have saved me a lot of pain. I tried to do it with a cheesy little Black & Decker and ended up driving 90% of the screws by hand. Got me a good workout though.
aeray (author)  CliffyP1 year ago
Glad you liked it, and good observations. It won't break, I promise.
timbit19851 year ago
I was sure that I noticed dimensions for the slats so that you could add a 1x6 frame to enclose the bed, but I can't seem to find it. Can someone tell me how long the slats need to be so that you can frame a queen size in?
arlenyod4 years ago
 I used your basic plan to make our own king platform bed for a foam mattress. I did some improvising to make it to our liking. I am adding a picture. We are adding drawers/slide-ins on the sides. It is very solid, what my wife wanted. We will need to disassemble and reassemble in our bedroom. 
I like yours better. How is the foam mattress? Was thinking about it and wanted to get some feedback from someone who actually has one.
We love it. We actually put a foam topper on the foam bed as the foam bed was just a little too hard for my wife's liking. The foam topper makes the bed wonderfully soft. We bought both at Sam's Club for a fraction of the cost of the name brands. My wife's arthritis is much better. The bed is very solid. It now has slide in's (sort of like drawers with rollers) in the each side for storage. My wife has all her shoes in her side and I have assorted items in my side. My wife and I also build a headboard with fabric. We like it very much! When I get time I will take and post a picture of the bed. has memory foam mattresses for even cheaper than Sam's Club or Costco. Best of all, they are delivered to your doorstep!
Thank you for responding. My wife tells me every day we need a new bed. I'm seriously looking into a foam and latex mattresses as conventional mattresses are becoming a problem for us sleeping...and we like sleeping. Thank you again for responding and I'll be looking out for those pictures.
Here is a picture of our finished bed.
arlenyod - what kind of wood did you use for the outside of the bed?
Love the design!
I forgot to tell you that I also built the headboard out of plywood, and my wife and I upholstered it with a deep reddish fabric. It is soft. I made the plans up in my head as I went so do not have anything written/drawn specifically.
I used a 1/2 inch plywood facing over a 2x4 frame with 1x4 slats where the mattress rests. In the cutout areas I made slide out drawers with rollers for storage. The plywood facing bears no weight whatsoever and was fastened with simple finish nails on the frame. I did not think to take pictures of the frame before I put the facing on. We have very much storage space now under the bed for my wife's shoes, extra clothing, books, etc. It is very sturdy. It is fairly high and my wife said she wishes it would just be slightly lower.
Been sleeping on a foam mattress for 5-6 years with no problems but an excess of comfort
Would you be willing to share your plans? This is the closest to what I want that I have found anywhere on the interenet. I want to be sure that it is supported enough for a king bed, and I like the lip to hold the mattress in place. I don't need the instructions for the storage. We want to keep it simple.
Thank you!
hi! can someone share dimensions for building a california king platform, preferably the easiest way! thank you
aeray (author)  arlenyod4 years ago
Nice work, and thanks for the photos.
I'm having a hard time reading through all your jargon- like, your pictures make it look incredibly easy but reading the instructions is difficult.

So, please correct me where I'm wrong. Is this what I'm going to do:
With all this wood I'll make a square-ish frame.
The legs will be put together with a little reinforcer block.
The slats will be placed across the bed as even as possible.
I'll have to make the slats and legs by cutting some of the original lumber.

Is that right? This makes much more sense to me than all your steps put together. Perhaps it's because I know that I'm going to have my lumber pre-cut- can I just skip right to the assembly part?

aeray (author)  euqinomdrawoh2 years ago
Correct, mostly. The only thing you misunderstood is the small block of wood. It is not a reinforcement block, it is a temporary spacer to keep the end grain of the legs from rubbing against the underside of the slats. It is removed once the leg is attached and used to space the next leg, and the next, and the next. Otherwise, yeah, that's the gist of it.
Okay, I see. I think there's a picture in your instructions that I can use for reference. I usually put things together from the picture and less from the directions. I'm building this bed for my first (yay!) apartment and was inspired by how quickly everyone, even novices, seemed to put this together. As I was reading through your instructions though, in my mind this turned into a weekend project! Glad to know that my simplistic view could get the job done. Do you have any tips that can help me while maintaining this simplistic view?

Also, it seems as if I'll be using a Philips drill and screws... I don't think I'll be able to afford a whole different type of screws and a special drill. You attest that they really suck- how can I make them not suck as much?

Thanks again!
aeray (author)  euqinomdrawoh2 years ago
You can't, unless you predrill and countersink every hole, but star/torx screws and drivers are cheap. Here is a link for 100 3" #10 screws for $11, and here is a link for a star/torx driver bit for $2. If you buy them by the pound or each, locally, they'll probably be even cheaper.

Here is a link for an appropriate countersink, for $7.70, but you'll still have to buy the actual 13/64" drill bit to go with it.
AdrianaG aeray2 years ago
Thanks for the links! A few questions about hardware and tools:

1. Your materials list calls for 66 #10 2" screws and on 8 3" screws, but I don't see any of the 2" ones on the linked site. Are you using all 3" screws?

If we do need 2" ones, can you recommend a source? (I've checked Lee Valley and Woodcraft and don't see 2" ones there either).

2. Is a regular drill OK to use with the torx screws or is there a better tool to use with them?

3. Is the 13/64" drill bit a standard bit, or is there something special about it?

aeray (author)  AdrianaG2 years ago
McFeeleys is the best screw provider. A regular drill is ok; a cordless impact driver is better. The bit is a standard size.
AdrianaG aeray2 years ago
In their star drive product list here they only show a #8 2" screw or a #10 2.5" screw. Which would be better?
aeray (author)  AdrianaG2 years ago
Either will work. Go with the cheapest. If you use the 2.5", you may have to pre drill the legs.
AdrianaG aeray2 years ago
Great. Tthis leads to one more question - does going with #8 2" screws change the countersink or 13/64" drill bit recommended above?
aeray (author)  AdrianaG2 years ago
Yes. You will need a #8 countersink. I can't remember the bit size off hand. Most countersinks come with the correct bit; the one in the
Ink I provided is an exception to the rule.
VKoppel2 years ago
Is there anyway to make the legs longer so that I can have more storage space underneath?
aeray (author)  VKoppel2 years ago
Sure. Cut the boards longer. If you want to go longer than 32" or so, you should add diagonal braces, though.
wahela4 years ago
I'm so impressed. I've been making these little square bedside tables out of 1 x 4s and putting mosaic tile on the top. I have a chop saw, a drill and a lot of handtools. I have a spare room that is so small, and has a closet filling a corner and its way too small for a queen sized bed. I was looking for a futon when I found your site. I'm going to make a twin size bed frame this weekend, then I'll add a twin size mattress, and voila! My room will look great!
aeray (author)  wahela4 years ago
Great! I'd like to see pictures, with bedside tables included, of course.
wahela aeray4 years ago
I read somewhere in here that you suggested redwood for the frame part. I just checked with my lumberyard (in Iowa) and they would have to special order redwood, because its so expensive. At their price in redwood, the bed would cost well over 100 dollars. They do have cedar, and they have s4s cedar 2x4 and 2x6. Would that be strong enough? What about regular hemfir? Then cedar for the 1x4s? . Thanks for your help.
aeray (author)  wahela4 years ago
I only suggested that to someone that wanted to use it outdoors. Just use "#3 and better" pine for the slats (the 1 x 4's) and #2 and better hem-fir or pine for the 2 x 4's. Just go with the cheap stuff.
wahela aeray4 years ago
Thank you thank you thank you thank you! I have found the best invention known to all humankind. The torx screws. LOL. I am an expert at stripping philips head screws, I have a horrible time with them. I put them in the hold, turn on the screwdriver , and it goes all the way in and tight. I'm laughing now, because I've always thought I was a total clutz, the only reason I made those little tables out of 1x4s is because I bought a small air finish nailer and a cheap compressor. I have about half of the bed top done now. I just measured the holes from the end of the 1x4, and drilled both holes in an assembly line fashion and it is going to gether very easily. I'll certainly send a pix of a 57 year old clutz's futon bed. That is something you can be proud of. lol. About half done with the top and my screwgun battery started running down. Back to work! Lee Ann
aeray (author)  wahela4 years ago
Thanks for the update, and it sounds like you are having fun! Phillips head screws are evil, evil things. We await the photos.
wahela aeray2 years ago
Its been almost three years and I still have my bed in the spare room. Its been used by a lot of people,, some visiting from out of state, some are nurses that couldn't get home due to blizzards, etc. Its got a cotton mattress on it, and they look at me a bit skeptically when I explain its a futon with a cotton mattress. But everybody loves it They all have said how well they sleep on that bed.

I am disabled now, retired. I have a big couch overstuffed with huge cushions filled with stuffing. The dogs have ruined it totally. Its only about 5 years old, and beat to heck I am going to get rid of that couch and make another twin size bed frame with another cotton mattress. I'm going to add a railing or two to the backside, sand it down and stain it dark , or paint it espresso brown, and take all of my thousands of pillows an place many of them on the back on the rail side. I like it too, because my knees are bad and I can get up easily from the bed in the spareroom, so it will make things easier for me too. I get my grandson to help, and he learns something too I have used those screws now for three years. I'll never go back to a Philips screw head. Thanks again, 3 yearslater. Lee Ann
I'm really new to woodworking and looking at this bed for my 8 year old twins in the twin size, I am trying to figure out what size I should make the frame and the length of the slats. Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.
nikNack2 years ago
hey quick question, is it ok if i get the wood pre-cut before i take them home?
aeray (author)  nikNack2 years ago
Sure, why not? (as long as it is cut accurately)
nikNack aeray2 years ago
ok.. im super excited to try this!!! will post pictures :)
aeray (author)  nikNack2 years ago
Please do.
nikNack2 years ago
question, can i get the lumber pre-cut in the store?
I will be making this for my daughters twin mattress and adding a picket fence headboard! :D
aeray (author)  DesignerUserName2 years ago
Please post pics. Thanks.
sbdw10102 years ago

I found your page and plan on making this in the next few weeks. I can't seem to find the specific directions on how to make it. Any help would be great.
aeray (author)  sbdw10102 years ago
What are you wanting to make? What can't you find plans for?
Even-O2 years ago

Thanks SO much for the well written/well-explained post (not to mention all the helpful comments and questions you inspired)!

I wonder if you could advise me about how to use your design to build a platform to hide a king bed underneath, rather than hold a mattress on top???

I have a super comfy king sized mattress which I'm using as a guest bed in my son's small bedroom (it is only about twice as wide as a king mattress).

Right now it takes up too much floor space. I'd like to build a platform that my kids can play on, and that I can store the mattress under when it’s not in use.

I'm thinking that I could use your design, but with a few changes:
1) increase the frame width, so the mattress can slide in and out
2) put plywood on top rather than slats (or slats plus plywood if it’s necessary for strength)
3) Use a vertical 1x4 down the center for support like bhamilton80

So here are the questions:
1) Could this work?
2) Do you think I should add anything to make it sturdy enough for kids to play on?
3) Any other advice?

I know you’ve heard this 525 times before but...thank you for sharing your expertise!!

*I've attempted to include a pic to give you an idea of what I'm hoping to achieve. It's the second pic on this site:
hide platform bed.jpg
aeray (author)  Even-O2 years ago
Do-able, definitely. Use 2x6 for the rails and omit the slats. Use additional 2x6s, edgewise, spanning between the longer rails, on 24" centers, and top it with plywood. Think "miniature deck on legs".
Even-O aeray2 years ago
Thanks for your reply!  I finished before I heard back, so I'll just have to cross my fingers that 2x4s will suffice.  We attached everything using brackets and added removable kickstand-style legs to the front.  The bed fits under one side and there's room for storage on the other.  Still working on decorations...but it's SO WONDERFULLY functional!  Thanks for the inspiration!
devells2 years ago
Just built this frame for the second time in a year. Thanks so much for the plans! I built it in Boston a year ago, then just moved to DC, and instead of moving it with me, since I had limited space, I decided just to build it again when I got here. It's cheaper than a cheap Ikea frame, it's pretty much just as easy to put together, and I can feel proud of building it myself. Thanks!

Also, second time around I shortened the slats a little bit, as well as the legs - slats are 4'5" and legs are 1'7", so I was able to buy 6' 1x4s and have no waste for 8 slats and all 8 legs! And my storage bins still fit underneath! I appreciate your attention to waste, I probably wouldn't have given it as much thought as it deserves, being an ultra beginner at this stuff.
devells devells2 years ago
Oh and with the old frame, my roommates repurposed it by taking the legs off, adding boards in the spaces, staining it, and using it as a small deck in a small Boston yard. Pretty cool!
Even-O devells2 years ago
Thanks for posting Devells! I'm looking to use the bed as a platform...has the deck been in place for a while? How is it doing?
devells Even-O2 years ago
Yeah about 6 months when I left the house, closer to 9 now probably. One note - the "deck" is resting on ground on one side and I think cinder blocks or stones on the other, so it is not really suspended off the ground much at all. That being said it was incredibly sturdy and never once shifted or made any noises when walking over it. We spent the summer grilling while standing on it.
aeray (author)  devells2 years ago
Extra points for reuse.
brink.scott2 years ago
Here's a slight modification for a king size with center supports, slat width and spacing, that fall within the warranty requirements for a Tempur-Pedic mattress. (4" or wider slats with no more than 2" spacing)

Also it's split like a typical king's two box springs (to fit through doors and halls). Connect them with flat brackets between the slats along the center.

Slats are 5.5" (1x6) with 1.75" and 2" spacing. Head slat is flush (for optional headboard) and slats come 1" short of actual king on each side and foot for slight mattress overhang. (79" long x 74" wide) Corners of foot slat can be rounded if desired.

I used : (22) 1x6x4 and (8) 2x4x8 (lengths were optimal for what was available to me, but admittedly resulted with more waste than the author would advocate).

The legs centered down the lengths are singe pieces of 2x4's while the rest of the legs are 2 pcs 1x6 as per original plans. I made them all 8" long for a total bed height of 9 1/2" because I have a 14" mattress and my dog has to be able to get up. I wasn't worried about storage space. Change the 8" to whatever you want ( be sure to add 1 1/2" to the leg height to calculate finished height)

The only thing not on the design is screw holes, just make sure that you don't drill into a spot that already has a screw from a previous join or you'll run into it. Offset and choose the screw lengths accordingly. I believe the original author factors that in with his instructions regarding marks and screws and materials.

Google sketch up : If you don't have it and you're here, then you should get it. It's a free CAD program with user friendly interface.

Email me & I send you my sketch up file, dimensioned and layered.

I don't know if I can post it directly. Heres some screenshots for now,
aeray (author)  brink.scott2 years ago
Good info. Thanks. You should be able to link directly to a sketchup file. Frazeeg did it a while ago for another design.
vjdoro2 years ago
Me again, reposting re: pics didn't work, gonna retry, thanks
aeray (author)  vjdoro2 years ago
Thanks for the photos.
jahburt2 years ago
Has anyone tried making the legs longer? My daughter's new apt in NY has a closet sized bedroom -would like to raise to about 3 1/2 feet to put low dressers underneath Would it still be stable? Thanks!.
aeray (author)  jahburt2 years ago
Diagonal braces on the legs would be advisable.
nininja2 years ago
Other than waste, is there a reason to use the legs you describe instead legs made of 4x4s? I'm very novice, so I apologize if this is a dumb question.
aeray (author)  nininja2 years ago
Waste is the primary reason, and a 4x4 is overkill for the load it will be under. A 4x4 is also difficult to cut cleanly with a skilsaw without some practice, because it takes two passes. If you have some 4x4 around, and some confidence, or a bigger saw, by all means, use it.
bhamilton802 years ago
Finished a king size version of this today. I really enjoyed this project!

I used eleven 72" 1x4 slats (which didn't need to be cut because they came at that six foot length).
Made the frame 71" x 68" (cut out of two 12 foot 2x4's.)
Used four 16" legs (8 pieces cut out of a 12 foot 1x4).
I put a 71" 1x4 vertically down the center for support, attached it to the frame with two screws and to the middle slat with two screws.

There was VERY little waste with this project. Total cost in materials was about $70. I'm really pleased with the way it turned out. It feels very sturdy and I have a really heavy king size mattress. One thing I would recommend is making sure to have a few extra screws in each size in case you bore out a screw or two. I used square drive screws and they worked great.

Thanks for this design Aeray!!

Thanks for posting. I also want to try the king size design. I'm curious to know if yours squeaks from the slats rubbing that center support beam.

Looks like you screwed only the middle slat to the support which means the rest of the slats are just resting on top of it. Seems like it would be possible to get some squeaking from those loose, wood-on-wood contact points. Thanks!
Hi! No squeaks at whatsoever! I would try doing it the way I did first and if you do have squeaks go back and screw them all in. But, I haven't had any. Also, I ended up swapping out the 1x4 I used for middle support for a 2x4. The 1x4 cracked a little bit and I would highly recommend using a 2x4 as the middle support.
Why thank you good sir! Have you noticed a "hard spot" from using the 2x4 instead of the 1x4?

The author posted this comment earlier is why I ask:
"Quite sure of the sturdiness of this queen-sized bed. For a king, though, I would upgrade the slats to #2 and better grade lumber, and be careful to get ones that were knot-free. I might also put a 1x4 on edge under the slats at the centerline of the bed. I think that a 2x4 would make a hard spot in the bed."

Also, what kind of mattress do you use? I'm thinking about using a spring mattress with about medium firmness.
That comment is exactly why I started with the 1x4. I definitely haven't noticed a hard spot in the bed from the 2x4. Maybe it depends on the mattress? I have a really heavy thick mattress. At any rate the 1x4 wouldn't hold up for me so I had to go with the 2x4. It feels super stable and is totally comfortable.
Here is the finished product. I couldn't be happier with the way this turned out. Made my cuts the same as bhamilton80 (above) and went with the 2x4 for the center support. I don't notice any hard spots or sqeaking...this thing is solid.

The instructions on here are great. I'd add that for the king size, when making the 2x4 frame, the 71" pieces go inside the 68" pieces so the dimensions of the frame when its put together are 68" x 74"

As for the center support, I screwed all the slats into it because I had a bunch of screws left over and it rattled a little without them screwed down.

If you're concerned about a hard spot in the middle (as I was) the author suggested leaving a 1/2" space between the support and slats "to allow but limit deflection." I tried it both ways and couldn't tell the difference, so for me there was no need to space them apart. I'd rather not give my brand new mattress any excuses to start sagging in the middle so I fastened the support directly to the slats. For reference, I'm on a continuous innerspring pillow-top mattress that sits directly on this frame. Perhaps your mattress is differenent and might need the space is the only reason I mention it.

Compared to a box spring with metal frame this project is definitely cheaper (spent $60 total), feels more sturdy, leaves you with more room underneath (about 6" more), and if you're like me this will teach you a thing or two by doing it yourself. Yeah its heavier and harder to move around but easily doable with a helper.
aeray (author)  roaringmudbutt2 years ago
Thnks for the pics. It looks like you used higher quality lumber. I hope it works out well for you.
It was all No.2 grade. from Lowes. I also got some furniture sliders there and stuck them under the legs and now one person can easily push this bed around. Still very pleased.
I've had it 4 months now and still love it. I added a 5th leg in the center because the king size is just so big and I didn't want my new mattress caving in the middle like the last one. The extra leg did firm the middle up a bit, but its still super comfortable so I'm leaving it on there.
malles2 years ago
A "even less waste" question. For a king sized build, could the long sides of the box frame use 72" (even 6 ft) instead of the 71" that seems to be what several people used? So external measurements of the box frame would be 75'' by 68' when the 72" lenghts are "inside" the 68" cross members.
vjdoro2 years ago
Me again, a note about waste, had a few more pieces of wood left than your design, primarily because I would have had to special order the 14' length 1x4's. I've decided to find ways to use the remainders, on other projects, so there won't be any waste at all in the long run, thanks again
vjdoro2 years ago
Made this bed, Queen sized, only mod. was a center support offset by the width of a scrap of 1x4, same as the legs and we used more slats. We have a heavy Euro top mattress and our combined poundage is about 500. We love the bed, its very strong, sturdy. We did have to pre-drill the pilot holes for all the screws, must be something about amateur status, just found it a lot easier going. Forgot to take pics before making the bed. shown pics, dressed bed and one corner with skirt lifted up. Hardest part of this project was moving stuff out of the way in our little room 10x12'. Over all to build the bed after buying the materials and making room to build it, it took just over 3 hours, and that included cutting and screwing 6 extra slats. It cost 50 for the wood and another 17 for the screws, had to buy more than we needed of the screws, will use for another project, we did get the torx head screws through McFeeley's because couldn't find the right size/length locally, only took 2 days to get the screws and 1 dollar shipping charge. Thanks for the great design, we are going to make another one soon for daughter's queen bed, but we'll stick with your original design, lots less weight on that bed. :)
I am looking at the page with the queen bed frame. Could someone tell me where I can get the size info for the wood I would need to build a full size one.
Thank you!
Elaina742 years ago
My husband and I are a bit on the plump side (okay large) but we are getting ready to buy a new mattress and instead of spending $300 on an ikea bed how can we reinforce your bed plans. I love the fact that I would be able to store so much stuff under it. Please advise thank you :)
theresah2 years ago
I love my bedframe--I built it over a year ago. But the legs are not sturdy. Do you have any suggestions for re-enforcing them? Using 2x4's instead, or attaching another "layer" of legs on the outside?
eb36042 years ago
Hi Aeray, I'm planning on building the bed soon and want to build out the frame to enclose the mattress similar to what user, Cheesesticks, did. I attached a sketch of what I want to do. I plan on attaching the two frames together with carriage bolts and screwing two 1 x 2s to the bottom. I am concerned about the strength of the exterior frame, particularly the exterior's sides. Do you have any suggestions?
aeray (author)  eb36042 years ago
Definitely strong enough. Don't bother with the carriage bolts; just use screws. Post pics when you get it built. You might consider omitting the two extra crosspieces underneath, and simply extend a few of the slats to the full 60" width and attach the sideboards to them.
bnolsen5 years ago
What does this look like with a mattress on it. A queen sized mattress by spec is 60x80, but the measurements of the slat width and frame are 55x74 (without the length overhang), which is more like a full sized matress at 54x75. Is this frame big enough to put a queen sized foam mattress on? How much will the mattress overhang this by? I'm just getting ready to pull the trigger on building one of these for my daughter's room. After that I'd build this in a king size, but add an extra 2x4 in the middle length wise and also perhaps add single 1x4 (or 2x4) legs at the ends of this piece for extra bracing of the slats. If there's a better suggestion for king?
aeray (author)  bnolsen5 years ago
This is for a queen size mattress. It hangs over 2-1/2" on either side so that the slat ends don't show to bump your legs on or look at. Scroll down through the comments and you can find answers to the rest of your questions, including exact king measurements and photos from Synaptic, and photos of "At29035ft"s bed with and without mattress.
I would love to make this bed in a king size, but I have scrolled through as you mentioned and can not find the instructions/measurements for king size. I would greatly appreciate them.
aeray (author)  instructablesmar2 years ago
Unfortunately, there are twenty-one pages of comments for this 'able, and no way to search them. Did you look at all of the comment pages?
brinbull2 years ago
This is a simple desing, I love simple. My only concern would be damaging a floor with the legs. I'd just take some carpet samples, cut them to size and attach to the bottoms of the legs with gorilla glue, or something similar.
KAF3272 years ago
Thanks for the instructions! I've never really built anything before and figured I should start somewhere. This was the perfect project.

I tend to be sort of a dreamer, so this bed took way more than an hour. Had a blast making it and did a blog post below:

joby5602 years ago
OK, Here is the photo of the bed. I made it extra high! Higher than I thought. We can lay in bed and look out the window. I am groovin' on that and the jumbo storage space underneath!
juice4842 years ago
instead of marking the long side board with all your layouts after the frame is assembled, do it before you screw and brace it. Then you can lay the 2 adjacent pieces next to each other and transfer the marks on one to the other with a square. This will make it easier and more accurate to create the mirror image.
I built this over the summer and my mattress is sinking in the center. My wife and I are under 400 pounds combined. It is amemory foam matress and it is a new mattress. Please help.
aeray (author)  mmdavis526072 years ago
What size of bed did you build, and what species of lumber did you use? The simple fix would be to add another 2x4 support at the centerline of the bed, under the slats.
I have a queen size. How do I attach it? I have seen you write to leave a 2 inch gap between the top boards and the center support, is this correct. Otherwise I love the bed. Thanks for your help!
aeray (author)  mmdavis526072 years ago
1/4" to 1/2" gap; end screw it through the foot/head supports.
hisironlung2 years ago
Made this about a month ago in full and totally love it. My roommates might build them too! I was wondering if anyone had attempted to build some sort of minimal attached nightstand? Was thinking about tackling that but wanted to see if anyone else had already...thank you for the great instructable!
aeray (author)  hisironlung2 years ago
The easiest method, and the one I used, is to remove the top two slats and replace them with a 10' 1x12. Done.
Shoot. That is brilliant. Have you seen any other designs?
aeray (author)  hisironlung2 years ago
I recall seeing another design or two, but there are 12 or 13 pages of comments for this Instructable, so you'll have to parse them yourself. Enjoy!
Some scrap wood and 40 minutes later...
photo (2).JPGphoto.JPG
aeray (author)  hisironlung2 years ago
Excellent work, thanks for the photos.
Thanks for the wonderful bed.
aeray (author)  hisironlung2 years ago
Sleep tight.
joby5602 years ago
Holy Cow! I just whipped this bed up this morning. Easiest thing I have ever done and I am not a builder by any stretch of the imagination.

I wanted it to be taller. So, i made the legs 24 inches tall. yep, you have to ho into the bed, literally. I am going to add brace boards at the bottom of each side to stabilize the bed with the added height.

Love the plans. Thanks for sharing!
aeray (author)  joby5602 years ago
Glad ya liked it; please post photos if you have them.
orksecurity2 years ago
Pondering building one of these myself.

One interesting side point of your design, especially since you went glueless: If the owner later decides they don't need it, a lot of that lumber might be recycled for future projects. Which, among other things, makes this a reasonable stopgap design while one decides

Another alternative would be to adapt the design used on my current platform, which is essentially an I-frame base (ply all the way across top and bottom of base, with a solid (MDF) piece the same width connecting their centers; MDF half-decks on top of that (styleishly overhanging the base); they added solid wood trim around the edges to prettify the visible surfaces and hide the fact that it was sheet goods. As with yours, that design leaves clear space underneath for "drawers" resting directly on the floor. One advantage: they designed it with T-nuts and bolts, which makes it easier to knock down and reassemble. (Yes, the screws in yours could be pulled and re-driven, but that's significantly

Could also split the difference: Build yours, and dress it up a bit. Round the corner of the legs (no cost, just work), run a decorative edge around the outside edge. (would significantly increase total lumber cost.)

Or I may just throw money at the problem and go with commercially made after all. But I definitely appreciate your posting this and giving me the option.

gregr2 years ago
I used cheap coarse thread drywall screws to put my bed together and about 1 year later managed to _break_ the four screws attaching one of the legs to the frame.

Moral: Use good quality screws...
screws 2.jpgscrews 1.jpg
aeray (author)  gregr2 years ago
Yep. +1.
Drywall screws really are suitable only for holding drywall, or for temporary jigs. They're great for the purpose they're intended for, but the same decisions which make them cheap and fast-driving also make them more fragile.

"You may not always get what you pay for, but never count on getting what you don't pay for."
cglisson22 years ago
The last comment left appears to have been in 2009...Well it's 2011 and I followed these plans today and modified it for a full size version. Thanks for the detailed plans!
aeray (author)  cglisson22 years ago
The last comment was actually in the last day or two, but authors can "flag" comments so that they stay at the top of the queue, regardless of posting date.

You're welcome, and I'm glad it worked out well for you.
wisd0m3 years ago
(removed by author or community request)
aeray (author)  wisd0m3 years ago
The slat should bow some. If you think they are bowing too much (more than 3/4" or so) by all means add another long 2x4 on edge to the center of the frame BUT attach it 1/4" to 3/8" lower than the two 2x4's on the outside edges to allow, but limit, the deflection. If you attach it in the same plane as the others, the bed will have a "hard spot" in the middle and will be uncomfortable. Additional legs shouldn't be necessary.
wisd0m aeray3 years ago
(removed by author or community request)
aeray (author)  wisd0m3 years ago
How much weight? More than 500-600 lbs?
wisd0m aeray3 years ago
(removed by author or community request)
aeray (author)  wisd0m3 years ago
You should be fine, no extra legs needed. I am a big guy 6'-5" and 250lbs, my wife is not petite, and our futon mattress is awkwardly heavy itself.
wisd0m aeray3 years ago
(removed by author or community request)
aeray (author)  wisd0m3 years ago
wisd0m aeray3 years ago
(removed by author or community request)
aeray (author)  wisd0m3 years ago
Looks good. Hopefully you can keep the rugrat out from under it. Let me know how it works out.
wisd0m aeray2 years ago
(removed by author or community request)
aeray (author)  wisd0m2 years ago
No problem. Try the bookshelves or table next.
Great write up Aeray. I want to do the king size version but this comment has me scratching my head.

I don't want a "hard spot" but I don't want the mattress to sag in the middle either. The consensus seems to be that a center support beam is necessary for the king size. If that's the case, should I leave space between the slats and the support beam as suggested above? Or should I do it like Synaptyc and Bhamilton80 who appeared to "attach it in the same plane as the others"?

Also, with the addition of the center support I'm worried sqeaking might become an issue with all the slats rubbing it. Any thoughts on this would be greatly appreciated because I'm still new at this.

I really enjoyed reading all the comments and I'm glad you kept up with this and answered as many questions as you have! This has to be one of the most helpful parts of this instructable. I'll be sure to post pics and let you know how it turns out
aeray (author)  roaringmudbutt2 years ago
Thanks. Personally, I'd make the center support about 1/2" lower than the slats. If you choose not to, I still don't think squeaking will be an issue, because the slats only move up and down at the center point, not side to side.
bhamilton802 years ago
Aeray - Thank you for this! I'm planning to build this in the king size. I found the dimensions for a king in the comments. I want to make this lower to the ground but not as low as just omitting the legs. So, I'm thinking about using 2'x8''s for the frame so it will sit off the ground a little more, but still won't require adding any legs. What do you think? Would that work?
aeray (author)  bhamilton802 years ago
That should work fine, but it would probably be cheaper to buy an 8 foot 1x4 to make some some stumpy little legs out of, rather than upgrading to 2x8 for the whole frame.
Thanks aeray. One other quick question. Since it's a king I"m going to add a 1x4 vertically down the middle of the frame for some middle support. Should I screw in the slats to the middle support or only attach the slats to the original portion of the frame? I don't want to waste a bunch of screws if it's unnecessary. Thanks so much. -Brian
aeray (author)  bhamilton802 years ago
I might attach the middle slat only to the support, with two screws, to help prevent twisting deflection of the middle support.
Good point! Thanks! I'll let you know how it goes and post some pics when it's done.
amcjap2 years ago
I can't wait to do this with my husband next weekend. We need two low twin beds that will serve as extra seating for kids in a large media room we have.
It will also double as a king bed when family and friends come to visit which is a lot.

Do you have measurments for a twin and do you have any suggestions based on how we will be using the beds. I will post pics when we're done. Thanks!!!
dho15222 years ago
Can you please give me measurements for a King size? I browsed the comments but didnt see any, im sure they are there somewhere though. I have not dont any woodwork since high school woodshop so if you could put it in laymans terms I would much appreciate it. I really want to build this

aeray (author)  dho15222 years ago
Remember, this Instructable has 11 pages of comments:

Nov 26, 2008. 11:18 AMSynaptyc says:
I built my KING Platform from this design. I scaled it up just a bit.
The end result is perfect! I have a Memory Foam mattress (4 layer) and the height is great. Not too high... and not too low. In fact, We have 12"s of clearance to put storage bins under the bed.
Total time to build:
Cuts = 20 minutes (talking to father as we cut.)
Assembly = 1 hour and 15 minutes. (while watching a Titans game)
[below are my measurements]
cut (2) 2x4's @ 68" (run horizontal for top and bottom)
cut (3) 2x4's @ 71" (run vertical. third one is for middle support)
cut (10) 1x4's @ 16" (made 5 legs. 5th goes in the center of the middle support)
cut (11) 1x4's @ 72" (slats)
I used phillips screws and had no issues.

THANK YOU FOR THIS DESIGN!!! The Bed is as sturdy as any factory job.
So simple.
dho1522 aeray2 years ago
Awesome, thank you so much
Zofox2 years ago
Found this instructible a long time ago and told myself that I wanted to build this. Moved to a new home recently with much less storage space and found that I NEEDED to build this. And I finally did. It is awesome.

Used Synaptyc's measurements (thank you!) for the king size, and made some slight changes with the weight of myself (6' 5" and 290#), my two dogs (150#+), my wife (5' 3" and 110#) and the mattress (Tempurpedic - weighs a TON)....

Used 1x6's as the slats with a 1x4 as a spacer so no measuring or marking needed after setting the first one - just butt the boards up square, and screwed them in. Best part? Slats needed no cutting! (6' lengths)

Used 2x4's as the legs (L's in the corners, and an H in the center). 18" of underbed storage. NICE.

This thing is rock solid. It feels like I could park a car on it. Yet is easily moveable, and doesn't make a SOUND. No squeaks like my old boxsprings.

Aeray, this is awesome. 5 stars. I will be building this for all of my close family members whenever they need a bed frame.

And yes, Torx screws are a godsend.
aeray (author)  Zofox2 years ago
Thanks, and my apologies for the tardy reply. Pics?
SLYcrafts2 years ago
I LOVE this!!!

I live in a most beautiful area, Funeral Mountains right out my door. I crafted a outdoor living room and have been longing for an outdoor bedroom, the Sky is so beautiful here.

This is just what I needed... Thank you.

aeray (author)  SLYcrafts2 years ago
You're welcome. Pics?
tamara_h2 years ago
Hi! this plan looks great and I'm getting ready to build the full size version, but I am unsure about the dimensions:

I noticed that in one of the comments you said that for the full size the only necessary modification is taking 5" off of the slats. this puts them at 4-2".
However without changing the size of the frame's width, it remains at 4-0",
which only leaves 2" between the frame and the end of the hanging slats.

Should I also take 5" off of the frame's width? (changing it from 4-0" to 3-7")?

The dimensions I'm planing to work with are:
(11) 1x4 4'-2" [slats]
(8) 1x4 1'-9" [legs]
(2) 2x4 4'-0" [frame, width (take 5" off?)]
(2) 2x4 5'-11" [frame, length]

Sorry if this sounds ignorant, I've never done any carpentry before and I was gonna have the wood cut for me at a lumberyard and just wanted to double check the dimensions before they cut it for me.

Thanks so much!
aeray (author)  tamara_h2 years ago
The frame width/dimensions remain the same. All that changes is the length of the slats.
tamara_h aeray2 years ago
I built the bedframe this weekend. It turned out great and it was really fun building it. My only trouble was with the screws/drilling, which cracked the wood twice (once on the 2x4 and once on the leg's 1x4, i added a picture of the cracked wood) but it didn't seem to have made considerable damage.

I would really appreciate your input on why this would happen and how it can be avoided. Does it mean that I didn't drill well? that the wood is of a lower grade? (the hardware store I went to didn't have the exact size and types screws so I ended up using 9x3 and 8x2 square recess "deckfast" screws, would this be a problem in the long run?)

I have done no carpentry before and was being really pedantic about triple-checking every measurement and marking so it probably took a little longer, but this tutorial is written so well that it made it really really easy for someone like me who has no prior experience with carpentry.

I made the full size version and ended up using these measurements: slats - 49", legs 11" (there is a low shelf by the bed and I didn't want the mattress to end up above it), and for the frame dimensions changed it to 66x45 (my mattress is on the smaller size, 74x53, so 45" width allows for 2" overhang for the slats, and then 2" over hang for the mattress. 66" leaves 2" overhang for the mattress length as well).

In case anyone is interested in building a full size version the cut list reads: (11) 1"x4"x49", (8) 1"x4"x11", (2) 2"x4"x45", (2) 2"x4"x66"

I had the best day building this, thanks for a great tutorial!
tamelita2 years ago
this looks great. i would like the measurements for a twin sized bed for my 3 year old granddaughter. thanx
esrun2 years ago
Hey Aeray,

Thanks for such simple to follow instructions. I managed to make the bed and I'm pretty happy with it.

I had a bit of a nightmare with the wood because nowhere around here does pieces longer than 8 ft. (Philippines). The total price of the wood was $70.

It was hard enough getting the right length screws let alone getting anything 'exotic' like Torx. So I was stuck with Philips screws which constantly wanted to cam-out.

I built the bed in my driveway and measured what it would be with the legs on and it seemed like it should all go inside and upstairs just fine. Unfortunately I couldn't get it up the stairs (they have a turn), so I had to take the legs off and then reattach them upstairs.

I have a question about the legs, I attached them with a gap, as you suggested, to avoid squeaking. But it seems like it would be stronger to have no gap, so the bed frame is resting on the wood rather than all the weight being put on the screws. Can you comment on that?

I ended up with a spare 1x4, so I figured I'd put that in as a center beam. Although I haven't actually screwed it in place yet.

Like most people have said, it's much taller than I want, so I'll be cutting the legs to be much shorter. I'll also sand down the edges a bit and maybe paint or varnish it.

I'm not very handy although I'm always trying things. It took me about 5-6 hours in total.

If I was to remake it and had better screws and a proper attachment for my drill then I reckon I could do it in about 3 hours. 
aeray (author)  esrun2 years ago
Thanks for the pics. The shear strength of the screws is more than sufficient to support the bed. Leaving the gap prevents squeaks.
geargirl2 years ago
Awesome platform bed! Plan on building it tomorrow! :) We have a queen-sized bed with a box spring, mattress and memory foam, all which make our current bedframe (at 10" off the ground) too tall! We're planning on building this bed frame with only 2-3" of clearance--just enough for air to pass through and keep it ventilated, but allowing us to get into bed without using a pole vault! My question: We have split boxsprings, so we really need full coverage for the whole footprint of the bed: 60" x 80" I believe, and not the smaller "queen" footprint that allows the mattress to hang over the frame a smidge. Has anyone built this bed to true queen measurements? I would sure appreciate any quick measurement modifications in order to create the 60 x 80 frame. Thanks so much! geargirl
ttru geargirl2 years ago
The platform is designed to just put the mattress on. you don't need a boxspring. if you got some rails you have yourself a bed already
lynoprinka2 years ago
Aeray, you are awesome.

I have now made 3 of these beds. They are terrific. I even sold one cause someone liked it so much they paid me for it! Here is my question. I want to take the Queen and trundle the full frame (without legs) underneath it. This will require some redoing that I want to make sure I am thinking through it alright.

1. I need to rebuild the queen frame and lengthen the 2 by 4', so there is more clearance between the legs. This will place the slats much more flush with the frame with a lot less overhang.

2. I need to reposition the Queen legs from inside the frame to outside the frame, again to give more clearance for the full to be pulled in and out. And maybe even use just legs on the outside at the head and foot, but not the sides to not impede the trundle in and out

3. I imagine this will affect the load bearing ability of the legs and the slats. Is it enough I should add a 2 by 4 mid way, like in the king bed to better support the slats? (Bed will be holding a light mattress, 2 " foam, and a 150 # person) What can I do to strenghten the legs if I have them parallel only the with the head and foot. Or maybe use 1x2's on the sides for the second part of each leg. Do they make 1x2's?

4. I need to remove the legs of the full frame and add casters to each corner. My problem here is I need it as low to the ground as possible, but the shortest casters I can find are at least 2 1/2 inches adding up the wheel and the mounting mechanism. SO I was thinking of mounting the plate of the caster not to the 2 by 4 frames, but to the slats underneath, but that puts the weight of the bed on the slat and the screw that is holding the slat to the frame. Not good, right? How do I distribute the weight better and still recess the wheel? I can cut a large triangular chunk of 1x4 and and put in the corner of the frame, and attach the caster to that, but how do I anchor the 1 by 4 to the frame and not the slats....

Great appreciation to anyone who has any ideas....
nofunsally2 years ago
Hello, I am gearing up to build this full-size version of this bed. I have two questions: 1.) Are 'decking' screws appropriate? and 2.) How important is the #10 size?
Thanks you kindly.
aeray (author)  nofunsally2 years ago
1) It depends on what kind of decking screws they are. Photos? Link?
2) Fairly important. Don't use smaller ones.
jdennett2 years ago
I just finished building it, with the exception of the legs, which I will probably do later on today. However I beefed up the design a little, as I am about 300lb, and my girlfriend is not petite. The 2x4 frame was upgraded to 2x6's, and a 2x4 center beam was added down the middle. Also basically doubled the struts to about 16 if I recall...It feels really secure, and firm enough for me. Now it just needs legs to give me some storage space, and be easier to get in and out of.

Thanks for the great basic design!
aeray (author)  jdennett2 years ago
Thanks for the feedback. Enjoy!
dgellor2 years ago
I read through ALL of the comments and couldn't find info on making a King size bed frame. Can it be done with these plans? If I had a queen matress I'd be off to the lumber yard right now! Thanks for the easy to read/follow plans!
screamer12 years ago
I made this bed, and it took me a little while extra because I used lumber from a neighbor for the slats that had been exposed to the weather, so I scrubbed it down with a mixture of water and bleach, and let it dry before assembling, but it looks great. The only down side is now with the large air mattress that I have I it, I need a step ladder to get in it. I'm considering cutting them down tomorrow if I don't fall out of it tonight and end up with a concussion. The plans were excellent though and very clear. The waste was almost non-existent! Thank you.
aeray (author)  screamer12 years ago
Excellent use of salvaged lumber. Pics?
screamer1 aeray2 years ago
Thank you. It looks just like your picture though...and I followed every step, and it's the first time that I've made something like that. Sorry, no pics, but trust me when I say that it was comfortable to be off the floor after sleeping on an air mattress for almost a year. I can actually see the sun coming through the windows in the morning!
I like these plans...nice and simple, but still requires a little bit of knowledge to make everything nice and straight, with even edges and a level end product. I only slightly modified the plans, using 2x4x8's instead of 1x4's. I had some left over studs from another project and liked the idea of a little more thickness in the legs. I did end up countersinking every screw, just because I like the screw heads to be just below the surface.
Let me tell you, this thing is solid! Its a little high for my tastes, but the wife loves its. The fact that she can store a full size plastic tote underneath, plus the laundry baskets makes it a winner for her. I did the whole thing for $35, using Home Depot for supplies. Great plans, thanks for uploading them!
aeray (author)  michaelhoover812 years ago
Thanks for the pics.
espion12 years ago
here's my version:

1. 2x2 legs, very minimalistic and so far sturdy
2. 2x2 running flush underneath the slats - no creaking as each slat is screwed into it, and corrects the excessive flex in some of the slats
3. nice geometric linens from IKEA and a big ass Canadian flag
aeray (author)  espion12 years ago
Thanks for the pics. I'm mildly concerned about the 2x2 legs; let me know how they work out.
tinyLA2 years ago
I love the bed frame!
Would I be able to make a platform that is much bigger than the bed in this manner? I want a sectiom of my studio to be a different level. I prefer this insetad of just elevating the bed and would like to do it myself.
aeray (author)  tinyLA2 years ago
Sure, but you may have to add intermediate supports.
jgautreaux2 years ago
2x4s are not actually 2 inches by 4 inches. When the board is first rough sawn from the log, it is a true 2x4, but the drying process and planing of the board reduce it to the finished 1.5x3.5 size.
Here is a website explaining more conversion ratios.
aeray (author)  jgautreaux2 years ago
Oh, I get it: this is spam. Flagged.
aeray (author)  jgautreaux2 years ago
As a professional carpenter, I am well aware of this, and all of these measurements account for it.
dilinger3 years ago
I made one of these 6 months ago. The bed itself is great, but over time the legs became really squeaky. I moved, took the bed apart, and I'm now putting it together again.. and while i have the bed upside-down, I can make the legs squeak pretty badly by wiggling them (and the fact that they wiggle at all is problematic). Do you have any suggestions for how to reinforce the legs better? I feel like the combination of wood that I used, as well as the screws biting into the wood means the legs aren't as firmly attached as it should be...
aeray (author)  dilinger3 years ago
What kind of wood did you use? Try adding another screw (or 2) to the legs. Snug them up with a manual screwdriver rather than a powered one.
dilinger aeray2 years ago
(Sorry for the late reply, I'd been busy w/ moving stuff)

According to my receipt, "Spruce 1x4 #3 Dry ESLP" and "SPF 2x4 Prem Std & Btr Dry". I've tried adding screws, but it didn't help (I hadn't tried snugging them up with a manual screwdriver, though).

I should mention that I had originally build the bed according to your instructions, but with a memory foam mattress the bed sunk in a bit. I later replaced the 1x4 slats with a couple large pieces of extra plywood I had lying around; it was still sinking quite a bit in the middle. Finally, I bought a bunch of 2x4s and replaced the slats with those. That helped *immensely*, but adds extra weight to the frame (along with the mattress itself being somewhat heavier than a standard mattress).

So, not only have I moved at least once since building the bed (which mean unscrewing and rescrewing everything), but I've essentially rebuilt it twice. That's probably contributed to the squeakiness.

I tried several leg variations, but nothing helped. What I finally did was prop the bed up on some old book boxes, and the squeaking went away.. One of thee days, I'd like to get the problem solved properly (the boxes take up storage space, and they're in the way of other things), but for now the boxes are doing the trick.
aeray (author)  dilinger2 years ago
Sorry I'm lat in replying as well; I was on the road when you responded. Spruce is very soft (barely better that toilet paper) so the screws "waller out" their holes quickly, and I suspect that replacing the legs with pine/larch/fir 1x will solve the problem
cyee12 years ago
Im looking to construct a full platform bed as low to the ground as possible (I have rabbits and don't want them getting under the bed). Without taking away the integrity of the bed and support, how short can I make the legs? Can't wait to start!
aeray (author)  cyee12 years ago
Just omit the legs.
dankb2 years ago
I built this bed a little over 2 years ago and overall I'm very happy with it, but I'd suggest to anyone building it to beef up the leg connection. This connection is under a lot of stress, especially if you move it around your room at all for cleaning or whatnot. A couple weeks ago mine started getting wobbly so I added some bolts in between the screws to tighten it back up. The wobbling stopped but I'm still expecting a couple years down the line to have to put in another fix just because there can be so much torque created at this spot that the pine will wear down around the bolt.

But like I said -all told I'm quite happy with the bed. Many thanks for sharing!
Q2 years ago
I have a very expensive latex mattress that was given to me as a gift that I'm making this bed frame for. I was told by the manufacturer that the slats can be no more than 2 inches apart, preferably less. How much extra wood will I need and does this change any of the dimensions? Also, is there a way to make the frame a bit longer so there is no mattress over-hang? Maybe attaching 2x8's as the frame instead so the mattress sits inside the frame? I'm sure this is all confusing, I'm just trying to support the mattress as best I can. First time with a latex mattress and they are very heavy - over 300lbs - at least. Thanks so much for your great 'bile!! =)
aeray (author)  Q2 years ago
Add 5" to the length of the slats, and 4" to the length of the longer 2 x 4's. You'll also need to use 17 slats to keep the gap less than 2".
Q aeray2 years ago
THanks so much for the extra info!!
Q2 years ago
Sorry about the bile.... Stupid computer keeps changing the spelling of the words. Meant to say great instructable!!
rludwig2 years ago
I like this bed design a lot, but I'm curious about the long-term wear on the mattress. It seems like the overhang would cause the edges of the mattress to give out more quickly over a period of years. I just bought a rather nice mattress and would love this kind of frame to put it on, but I want to take good care of it so it will last the 10 years it was intended for. For those of you who have built this frame, how did your mattress wear after a year or two of sleeping with the edges hanging over the frame?
aeray (author)  rludwig2 years ago
We've been sleeping on ours for about four years now, and the one pictured in the Instructable has been in use for about three years. Neither have any signs of abnormal wear and/or tear.
mommag3 years ago
Best bed I've slept on in years! thanks.
aeray (author)  mommag3 years ago
Glad to hear it. You're welcome.
jamest7653 years ago
Hi aeray,

Do you have dimensions for a full size?

Thank you,
aeray (author)  jamest7653 years ago
Everything is the same except for the slats. Make them 4-6" shorter.
jamest765 aeray3 years ago
kechols3 years ago
I've seen the twin size posted... what is the size difference in making an XL twin? Thanks.
febsky3 years ago
HI Aeray,

Looking at this info, I think I can do this bed. Both me and my hubby ARE NOT builders but I am more adventurous.

Just a year ago, we bought a queen bed (frame+mattress) and we destroyed the box in a matter of 5 months. (destroying our precious moolah too). Sleeping is super uncomfortable now.

I am 130 lbs 4'11, and hubby is 350 lbs 6'2. What do I need to add to make sure this frame holds our weight?
aeray (author)  febsky3 years ago
I'm a big guy too, and I wouldn't change anything. Pick your 1x lumber carefully, though, culling out any pieces with knots larger than 1/2" or spike knots. Post some pics if you attempt it, and good luck.
bjohns20003 years ago
Have you built one for king-size? curious what adaptations you would suggest? thanks
aeray (author)  bjohns20003 years ago
I haven't, but several others have. The only real adaptation is adding a center rail and altering the dimensions. Look through the comments here; several people give explanations and dimensions.
biohazmtb3 years ago
Built one at my wife's request. Modification being for a king mattress and utilizing all cedar wood construction. On the main supports subbed 1x6 and added one runner in the middle. Surprisingly it went quite well and is plenty sturdy even though it is cedar. No noise and over six months of use without failure.

Next I am to build one for a daughter per your original plans. Hope to keep it economical as the cedar was a little pricey.

Thanks for the excellent work you have put forth on this. Jerry

aeray (author)  biohazmtb3 years ago
I'm glad it worked out for you. Just out of curiosity, why did you choose to go with cedar? Feel free to post some pics when you're done.
rmorey3 years ago
What is the recommended weight limit for this bed frame? between my partner and i we weight around 500lbs.
aeray (author)  rmorey3 years ago
You'll be fine. No problem.
snowbarrr3 years ago
Really awesome instructable! I know/knew nothing about building anything, but I'm most of the way through this project and it was a breeze because of your excellent explanations and clear pictures.

I just have a quick question (if you are still around) about attaching the legs: Your instructions say "and attach it with (2) screws per 1x4, on the diagonal". When you say on the diagonal, do you just mean the pattern - one screw above and to the right/left of the other? Or do you mean screw the screws in diagonally?
aeray (author)  snowbarrr3 years ago
Glad it's working out for you. Yes, I mean the pattern... screws inserted perpendicular to the workpiece, but offset diagonally from each other. Post some pics when you are done.
snowbarrr aeray3 years ago
Done! I made the legs about half as tall because my mattress is gigantic. I love it!

I added a bed-skirt to make it look more finished. Even with the slats the bed-skirt works just fine.

Thanks so much aeray!
2011-03-17 20.31.17.jpg2011-03-17 20.44.54.jpg2011-03-17 20.51.52.jpg
aeray (author)  snowbarrr3 years ago
Thanks for the pics. Looks good. We've recently added a "skirt" to ours (really just another, larger sheet. It does make a difference. In our former abode, the bed wasn't really visible from any "public" space, so it wasn't an issue. In our current residence, with the door open, it is quite visible, so covering up the storage is a big plus.
brucew173 years ago
This is a really great post, thanks. I am researching buying a memory foam bed and I understand that the surface the bed sits on has to be flat and rigid for the warranty to be in place. Also, is it possible to build this frame for a "king"?
divalea3 years ago
First: Thanks, aeray, for this awesome instructable.

I built this platform for my daughter, in a twin size. I finished it about
two hours ago. She's already sleeping on it, I am eating some 5-minute artisan bread I also learned how to make from one of your 'ibles.

I bullied my way to the finish line on this project: tool drama meant fastening the legs to the bed using a screwdriver rather than the drill. (If anyone needed proof this can be done with hand tools, there you go.)
It took me, including cutting, about 5-6 hours, but I pre-drilled everything after having a leg piece split completely. (I'm trying to figure out how you 2-hour assemblers did it...)

I made the platform with 18" legs, instead of 15" in the twin measurements. I'm going to make another for my mattress, a queen-sized one, and I think I'll be using 18" legs again; once you add in the gap, the slats, and the height of the mattress, you're getting up there! (Just measured: 28" high.)
(After sleeping on a mattress on the floor for nearly a year, I am REALLY looking forward to having my mattress at a proper height again!)

I cut the lumber at my ex's house (because that's where my table saw lives), then brought it to my apartment and put it together. (I got custody of the drill.)
I was able to get all the cut lumber into a Crown Vic by putting the armrests down and running the longest pieces between the front seats, the slats in the trunk, and the leg pieces in the backseat floor.

This platform can be assembled in a pretty small space, too. My work space is about 7.5' x 12'. I used a cabinet and work desk as my sawhorses.

As you can see in the picture (which was taken right after the frame was finished, the bed made and the daughter led to it), not only is my daughter snoozing comfortably, but the finished project was instantly approved by our cats.

Total cost was about $40. for lumber and hardware from Home Despot. I had to use the evil Philips screws, that's all I could get without shelling out $30. for a box of square or Torx. -__-
(I feel like I missed information about where to get smaller quantities of screws. Did I?)
aeray (author)  divalea3 years ago
Good work under tight constraints, and thanks for the pics. About the screws: most small, non-chain lumberyards/hardware stores sell bulk nails and screws, by the pound. Most big chain stores only sell prepackaged quantities.

When I tracked the time I spent building the bed(s) I didn't count the time I spent picking up the materials, because I was picking up a whole truckload of stuff, not just the bed stuff. Also, my tools are more or less permanently set-up, so no hauling them in and out and setting them up and putting them away. I also do this all the time, so my motions are habit, and extremely efficient. With some practice and forethought, you could get there too (but I also do this kind of thing 40-60 hours a week, for months on end). Hand in there.

I'm also amazed that you got it all in a Crown Vic. Our other vehicle is a Chevy Lumina sedan and I used it to pick us a single 10' 1x10 the other day, and it was a drag.

Please post pics of your next bed, I'm sure it will go faster this time.
wisd0m3 years ago
Had to re-post this.

Here are the pics. I added the middle support (used triangle crayons to space it about 1/4 from the slats) but no additional legs. With the memory foam mattress, it feels very sturdy.
Agroking3 years ago
Why doesn't the top of the legs butt the slats? That is, why the spacer? Don't you think it would give a stronger hold by eliminating the gap?
aeray (author)  Agroking3 years ago
The spacer is temporary. The gap keeps the end grain on the top of the legs from contacting the underside of the slats, thus preventing squeaks.
Agroking aeray3 years ago
Ahh okay. I thought the bed would be stronger without the space. I modified the measurements and whatnot to suit a king single futon, but I also used nails and PVA instead of just screws, so I'm hoping the glue will stop any squeaking.
aeray (author)  Agroking3 years ago
Nails and glue are strong, but will eventually work loose in this application. Once they do (which will probably be years down the road), your only option is to extract the nails and re-glue and re-nail if possible. My decision to use screws was based on a few factors: They are easier to install for most builders, they can be easily removed (to disassemble the bed for transport), they can easily be tightened at a later date, to account for seasonal or wear-related wood movement, and they provide a more resilient connection, i.e. nails tend to "work out" with repetitive stresses of this type, with no way to tighten them back up. I'm sure that your bed will provide you with many years of good service (probably more than the bed in this Instructable) though once it craps out, it will be more difficult to repair.
oxen3 years ago
I've read through all 360 comments and cannot locate the dimensions of what a full size should be.

The only comment I could find was that Aeray said to cut the slats 2" shorter for a full.

Should every other dimension be the same?
Many thanks
aeray (author)  oxen3 years ago
Yep, just cut the slats 2-3" shorter and leave everything else the same.
lamuneca0083 years ago
Thanks so much for your 'ible! I've already made two beds using your instructions. I made one twin size bed and one queen size. The queen I made a bit higher so I could store all my junk underneath.

I did have a question?? Do you have any great ideas for a loft bed for my son? It would need rails. I made one loft bed but I used soooo much wood on it and I really like your plan with as little wood but enough to make it sturdy.

aeray (author)  lamuneca0083 years ago
I'm glad you like it. I don't have any loft bed plans at this time, but I may in the future. In the meantime, I'm pretty sure there are several loft plans on this site...
salyear3 years ago
Here are the photos you requested.

My wife made the skirt from our old curtains. The bed just happened to be the perfect height for an old shelving unit full of reference books to fit underneath.
The mattress is queen size from (recommend).
aeray (author)  salyear3 years ago
Looks good. I like the effect that skirting just the frame has. Ours is skirted around the edge of the slats, for a much different effect.
salyear3 years ago
My wife and I absolutely love this bed. We are selling our house and moving to an apartment in the city. We know the extra storage space underneath will be a necessity.

Great instructable!

ALSO: The tip about SPAX screws has been awesome! Love the product!
aeray (author)  salyear3 years ago
Thanks. Post some pictures if you get a chance.
msaul3 years ago
Hi there,

I modified this bed by lowering the legs - cut them to 16" - and by extending the top 2 slats - cut them at 91" - to accept a floating shelf, see photos. Each shelf extends out 15.5". I hope they won't sag as there is no support underneath. There will not be a lot of weight on them. My friend Clarence helped me finish the bed and he whipped up the shelves in about an hour!

The nice thing about slats is you can wind the lamp cords through them to hide. Thank you so much for designing and posting this great project.
Q Bed 012.jpgQ Bed 009.jpgQ Bed 011.jpg
aeray (author)  msaul3 years ago
Thanks for posting pics. Looks good. I actually replaced the top two slats on our bed with a 10' 1x12 (so 2-1/2' sticks out on either side) and even with stacks of books and lamps on it I haven't noticed any sag.
msaul3 years ago
I am using hemlock instead of pine. Do I need to predrill holes to connect the 2x4s?
aeray (author)  msaul3 years ago
Yes, particularly since hemlock is more "brash" than pine.
msaul aeray3 years ago
Hi again. I think I did not phrase my first question very well. I have already pre-drilled holes at the ends of the shorter 2x4s. Do I need to also pre-drill holes in the (butt?) ends of the longer 2x4s - with hemlock?
aeray (author)  msaul3 years ago
k4r3n23 years ago
This bed is awesome, but all of the mechanical engineers that walk into my room look at the legs and comment "you may want to cross-brace that". It seems like the bedframe is fairly wiggly and bendy - how much flex is allowable before I should start to get concerned?
aeray (author)  k4r3n23 years ago
We've been using ours for over three years now, and while it wiggles a bit, it hasn't "let us down" yet. If you've been using the bed for a while, use a manual screwdriver to snug up the screws a bit, as the wood tends to shrink/compress a bit at first.
drathale3 years ago
for joining the frame, does one also drill holes on ends of the longer wood shafts? i can understand the holes in short arms, but then how do you put in the screws in the ends of long arms?
aeray (author)  drathale3 years ago
No holes are necessary in the longer 2x4s. Just run the screws in. The shorter 2x4s are drilled to keep them from splitting, and the longer 2x4s are unlikely to split.
ababb53 years ago
I was wondering if you could help me convert the dimensions and size/amounts of boards I would need to make this for a twin bed? I am pretty new to this so sorry if this seems like a simple quesiton! Thank you in advance :)
aeray (author)  ababb53 years ago
I went and found them: From hardyoyo, page two of comments: "I built a twin version of this bed a while back, here's a modified shopping and cut list so you don't have to do the math. Buy: 3x 12' 1x4s, 1x 10' 1x4, 3x 6' 2x4s. Cut: from 2 12' 1x4s cut 4 2'10" slats; from 1 12' 1x4 cut 3 2'10" slats and 1 1'3" leg; from 1 10' 1x4 cut 7 1'3" legs; from 2 2x4s cut 2x 5'11" long frame pieces, from the last 2x4, cut 2x 2'3" short frames pieces."
ababb53 years ago
Can someone help me convert the dimensions/measurements in order to make this for a twin bed? I am new to this so I apologize if this seems like a simple question! Thank you in advance :)
bizzielizzi3 years ago
LOVE the bed and all the great comments. I'd like to make a trundle to go under and am hoping to use the same plans with modifications. I am going to build the standard twin bed frame and build a custom size trundle to fit a slightly smaller than standard twin futon mattress. Before I go shopping, I want to make sure the trundle will fit under. I'm not great at math but I think I need to make the length of the twin bed a bit longer. Would it be fine just to take out some of the overhang on the ends? I'm thinking of framing in the edges anyway, to support standard twin mattress (not futon) and a daughter who does gymnastics on all the furniture! I'd also like to clarify the height clearance from floor to bottom of long frame piece. Thanks!
aeray (author)  bizzielizzi3 years ago
There will be 18-1/4" clearance under the bed. You do realize that the dimensions given in the Instructable itself are for a queen sized bed?
The clearance between the legs on the narrower side of a queen bed will be either 3'-2" or 3'-0-1/2", depending on how you orient the legs.
Twin dimensions can be found in the comments though, and the basic plan is quite forgiving of tweaking the dimensions, especially when making them smaller.
Thanks for your reply. I did find the twin dimensions and ended up spending quite some time with my measuring tape and calculator last night figuring it all out. I think I have it! Took me longer to do the planning than the work will, I bet! I'm so excited about this project I've been dreaming about it :)
aeray (author)  bizzielizzi3 years ago
Most worthwhile projects spend much longer in the planning stage than in the execution stage. Time spent planning is paid back with exorbitant interest during the execution of the plan. If you need any more pointers/help, just let me know.
skidmarks4 years ago
 Just wanted to post a quick thanks:


I built this while watching the superbowl. Being lazy, I went to the Despot, so I used bnolsen's (?) suggestion of 4 12' and 2 10' 1x4's. His plan ends up with an extra slat and I messed up the spacing the first time. I had to pull them up and redo. In case anyone else goes this route, the slat marks go at: 2.5", 9.5", 16", 22.5", 29", 35.5", 42", 48.5", 55", 61.5" 68" and 71.5". Oh, I also ended up with 17" legs, which is fine for me.

Also, for those people who keep thinking this is for a full-size mattress, it's not. I've just thrown my old full on it and it's not a good match. I built the queen size planning on getting a new mattress once some cash flows in.

Cheers aeray!

Sorry about the bad instructions on the slats. The foam mattress I bought ended up being several inches wider than the bed and I had to reslat that one. I left a few of the original slate and put more longer ones in between. The thinner foam mattresses really need the extra slats.
aeray (author)  skidmarks4 years ago
Thanks for the comment, and thanks for taking the time to read, understand, and follow the directions.
llmadigan3 years ago
you remembered :) i ended up going with the 1/4" all thread - which my hardware store cut for me! i'll post a pic of the shelves in a bit....

i was wondering if i could just use 2 different drill bits to countersink, but wasn't sure if it was ok to do.

i'll post pics of the bed when i'm done.

and i cannot wait to see the table!! (i was going to ask if you were taking requests on new "cheap, easy, low-waste" pieces, and a table was going to be one of them).

thanks again!
aeray (author)  llmadigan3 years ago
If you have other requests, I'm happy to oblige, PM me, or post here.
frazeeg3 years ago
I took the liberty of drawing up a model of this in Google SketchUp

Click to follow the link.

I thought it might help give people a better visualization of how it all fits together, assuming that those people know how to use SketchUp.  A picture preview is below.

gregr3 years ago
I built one of these today; everything went together really easily. The platform is exactly the right height for my flat file...
aeray (author)  gregr3 years ago
Thanks for the pic.
ethomas32813 years ago
Whoops- my picture didn't upload. here is it...excuse the mess under the bed!
bed 004.jpg
aeray (author)  ethomas32813 years ago
Underbed storage is what it's all about!
ethomas32813 years ago
I love this bed. I made 2 (one extra long twin with my nephew) and a modified twin (65" long and 39" wide) for my daughter. I had never made anything before (unless you count assembling furniture from Ikea!) and was able to easily follow the instructions. My local lumber yard cut all the wood for free, so that was a huge help.
There's only one problem, and this is not with the design of the bed but with my daughter's mattress. She has a homemade buckwheat hull mattress and it tends to slide around a bit, so I really need a "box" around the bed to hold her mattress in, otherwise one side of the bed gets flat and the other is quite high. I had already modified her bed frame so the slats don't overhang, but I'm not quite sure how to attach the pieces to "box" in the mattress. I was going to use 1X12's on the sides for the "box," but should I attach them through the slats and into the frame or on the side of the frame? Should I use brackets?
Sorry if this question is a little convoluted, but I am no carpenter and don't know most of the terms! Any ideas on how to enclose the mattress and prevent it from sliding would be greatly appreciated. The mattress is about 10" high and there is enough room on all sides to attach a 1X12 , I'm just not sure exactly where to attach it. I have included a picture...
Thanks for the great instructable. -Elizabeth
aeray (author)  ethomas32813 years ago
I'm definitely a fan of buckwheat pillows, but I haven't tried a mattress. Yet. As for the "box": I would recommend attaching the 1x12s to the 2x4 portion of the frame using screws, leaving about 8" sticking up past the top of the slats. Use a screw about every foot, and try to stagger them up-and-down while avoiding the slats. Putting screws into the end-grain of the slats isn't very strong. Additionally, use two or three screws to fasten each sideboard intersection, at the corners. Hope this helps!
Thanks- I'll try it this weekend.
aeray, thanks so much for posting this. I wonder if you happen to have any similar simple, low-waste plans for an easy chair or sofa? Thanks again!
aeray (author)  PrettyBonesArt5 years ago
Not yet, but perhaps in the future, if the need arises.
mkslocomb aeray3 years ago
please try to get to it. i really like your plans and have been looking for simple furniture that i (an amateur) can successfully create.
aeray (author)  mkslocomb3 years ago
What style are you looking for? I'm planning on building a fairly complex Asian/Mission/Craftsman style sofa in the near future (I'm conferring with the upholsterer right now, and sourcing material), but I also need to build something quick and easy for the nearer future, and I've been sketching a bit with no clear direction, so if you'd like to suggest one, I'll happily take it into consideration.
mkslocomb aeray3 years ago
i had heard of 2X4 furniture, i was actually thinking something simple, kind of adirondaky that used slats for the seats and backs and definitely would fit those pre-made (easily found) "outdoor" cushions (some of which really are nice enough to use inside). just some thoughts...
aeray (author)  mkslocomb3 years ago
There are a scad of Adirondack plans available online already, many of which are quite good, but Adirondacks are really too low for indoor seating. For other seating, the cushion factor is what I have been investigating, and finding inexpensive, readily available cushions in useful sizes for indoor furniture is irksome. That is part of what I am consulting with the upholsterer about. If you have any ideas about materials, sources, or techniques, I'd be more than happy to check them out, just PM me.
I made one of these and was super-pleased with the results despite some trouble finding myself some square or torx head screws (which is important!).
Only complaint or suggestion to others: Apply a liberal layer of wax with a candle or brick of household paraffin between all the boards before screwing them together and apply some anti-skids/scuffs to the bottoms of the legs if you plan on doing anything beyond sleeping on this bed. It can be noisy!
Also: I spent ~$150 on materials for this bed. This should be on the top end as I bought only FSC certified wood in an urban area.
aeray (author)  TheRevJester3 years ago
Lumber prices here have gone up a bit, but not nearly to the highs of your urban area, thankfully. Kudos on using FSC lumber, though.
Stonehopper3 years ago
This design looks like it would be easy to use for camping trips with our truck. We are both large people and have trouble getting up form air mattresses and off the ground and need something taller. The legs could be setup to be removed and replaced easily and the platform could be used as sideboards on the way to where we are going. Great job and when I have them built will post pics.
aeray (author)  Stonehopper3 years ago
You could easily replace the four leg screws (per leg) with through-bolts, fender washers, and wingnuts. Enjoy!
I recently made a platform inspired from this instructable, and it was amazingly low waste.  Total materials were

(1) 1x6x12, cut to 2 56" lengths, one 31" drop (only unused part)
(2) 1x6x8x2, cut to 2 75" lengths, two 21" drops (used for legs)
(2) 2x4x8, cut to 2 75" lengths, an additional 2 21" drops
(6) 1x4x8, cut to 12 48" lengths, no leftovers here.

I used the 56" and 75" 1x6's to frame out the box, with about an inch and a half raising up over the slats.  This helps hold the mattress in place, so no worries about it sliding.  The 2x4x75 were spaced about 3 feet apart, symmetrical about center, as support for the slats themselves.  The bottom of these were coincident with the bottom of the box.  Ontop of these I placed the slats, starting at about an inch and a quarter from the box itself, then spaced about 2 and three quarters apart from then on, so it looked more or less even.  The legs butted up against the slat and the box, against the outside face of the slat supports, fastened into the slat supports.

All in all, construction took about 3 hours.  I had the lumber pre-cut for me at lowes.  All the 1x pieces were cedar (I liked the smell and looks tons better), but could easily have been #2 prime.  Cost was 83 dollars for wood, plus 1 pound of #8 deck screws.  If I didn't use cedar it would have been closer to 33 dollars.

It's reasonably sturdy, and gives tons of space beneath for storage
I like this bed frame. What size is it? Could you provide me with the plan you used?

I like yours as well. You've taken the base and built it up for a more finished look. Kudos.
notsotall3 years ago
which 'supplies' do I buy less of to make it a lower platform bed?
honeysara3 years ago
nice bed and all things are .
Pyrite3 years ago
Does anyone have dimensions for double bed, am novice builder and dimensions would help slot. Am floor sleeper for my back and joint comfort!!
Thanks mellowyellow
bluestars3 years ago
Cool build! Very simple - even a complete novice like myself could follow it. I'm moving off-campus next week and I really don't want to drop $130 on a CHEAP platform from Ikea. I have two concerns, though. Firstly, because of my college co-op program, I may be moving as often as once every 6 months. How hard is it to disassemble and reassemble this bed? It seems pretty firmly screwed together. Secondly, I broke two of the dorm loft beds - the screws that held the support structure to the legs split the legs. I'm not exceptionally heavy or anything, but I am rather rough when I hop into bed. Is there anything I can do to strengthen this bed, or is it alright as is? Thanks a lot, aeray!
goody173 years ago
can this be made taller? like a loft? im gonna assume more support in the legs would be needed...
aeray (author)  goody173 years ago
Sure. The legs could be just the same but longer, as long as you added some diagonal bracing.
 I was excited to find this instructable but needed to make some modifications. I have a queen memory foam mattress and wanted less space between the slats and less mattress overhang all around. Also, I don't have any big plastic storage bins, so I didn't need the legs to be quite as long, although I still wanted the bed to be higher than I could find elsewhere.


My finished platform is 58"x78" and 19" high, which gives me 1" mattress overhang on each side.


Shopping List

(9) 10' 1x4

(1) 8' 1x4

(2) 12' 2x4

(8) 3.5" #8 wood screws 

(96) 2" #7 wood screws


Cut List

(17) 58" 1x4  slats

(8) 18" 1x4 legs

(2) 48" 2x4

(2) 73" 2x4


I didn't bother marking out exactly where each slat went on the frame because the spacing is a little more than an inch and a little less than 1-1/8". I just screwed in the first one with a 1" overhang and placed the others in about the right place place, adjusting a bit here and there.


I added three round felt stickers to each leg so as not to scratch our wood floors. I used our existing dust ruffle which doesn't reach the ground, but didn't before either. I may paint the legs later. The headboard was existing and is screwed to the wall.


The materials cost about $60 and it took my husband and me about 5-1/2 hours including shopping. We took Aeray's advice and avoided Home Depot, but since it was Sunday the best we could do was Dixieline. They did not have exactly what we were looking for, hence the further differences between our shopping list and Aeray's. Please let me know if I should expect the thinner screws to leave me on the floor. An added benefit of my list was I didn't need any 14' lumber, which I couldn't have transported in my Corolla.


In short, I am very pleased. The project was easier than I expected and now I have a bed that perfectly meets my needs and cost much less than any other option I could find. I am pleased with the sturdiness.

Complete Bed.jpg
I like yours also.
itobor25253 years ago
Great idea, kudos. Long ago, I had a similar wooden futon bed frame; I hated the feling of the 'gaps' between slats. On a walk through our old neighborhood; my wife and I spied a construction crew about to discard thick styrofoam (I know, I know styrofoam! - but it was free and repurposed) insulation board. We asked if we might have some of the larger pieces. The foreman gladly handed them over and several feet of duct tape, a fitted sheet for a cover and a few minutes of my time, voila, a substitute pad was born.
Can you explain a bit what you mean by "Pay attention to the orientation of the legs, because in cross section one side is longer than the other"? I've built the bed so far, other than the legs, and I'm confused about what this part means. Thanks.
aeray (author)  monkeylibrary3 years ago
It just means that in cross-section the legs form an "L", not a "V", so they look wider or narrower depending on which side you are viewing.
Thanks! that makes it clearer. I'm making a Twin XL frame, and I'll post dimensions and a picture when I'm all done. Thanks again for your reply.
salene753 years ago
I've looked all through the comments, yet I can't find dimensions for a twin size bed. Am I missing them somewhere? I love this design and can't wait to get my kids' mattresses off the floor. Their room is really small and the mattresses have to make an "L", but standard metal frames just won't fit. Thanks for this great project!
aeray (author)  salene753 years ago
From hardyoyo, page two of comments: "I built a twin version of this bed a while back, here's a modified shopping and cut list so you don't have to do the math. Buy: 3x 12' 1x4s, 1x 10' 1x4, 3x 6' 2x4s. Cut: from 2 12' 1x4s cut 4 2'10" slats; from 1 12' 1x4 cut 3 2'10" slats and 1 1'3" leg; from 1 10' 1x4 cut 7 1'3" legs; from 2 2x4s cut 2x 5'11" long frame pieces, from the last 2x4, cut 2x 2'3" short frames pieces."
This sounds really easy! Thanks for the plans. I have a question for you however. My daughter is wanting a platform built in her bedroom tall enough for storage underneath and large enough for a mattress AND additional walking/sitting space. I was thinking about putting a desk on one end and steps leading up to the platform. Any suggestions on this? I can't seem to find anything online that shows space around or to the side of the mattress. THANKS!
seigenblues3 years ago
Just built it this evening & promptly took a nap -- love it! Being blissfully ignorant of the comment section, i didn't note that this was for a futon mattress -- quite tall with a regular mattress, but eh! It's so solid! Also, i went to the orange box for the lumber & they don't carry 1x4's in either 14' or 10'. I did it with 6 12'-ers, 5 cut into 2pc 4'7" & 1pc 1'9", and the last cut into 1pc 4'7" and 3pc 1'9" 's. Turned out great, super sturdy and not creaky at all, love it! Might go back and shorten the legs a bit later, though ;) great instructable!
notblaine5 years ago
Very nice. I bet you it'd make a nice poolside bed with a couple coats of sealant - throw your towel down after you get out of the pool and sun dry.
That is actually my plan, ie, poolside bed. Will cover futon mattress with plastic layer and sunbrella fabric and I'll have the coolest lounge ever, for way less than the $1K it would cost for me to buy it already done! I'll post once I've done it!
aeray (author)  styledoc3 years ago
Speaking from experience: futons need to have air circulation, or the get mildew-y. Don't completely encase the futon in plastic. Leave as much of the bottom open as you can (think plastic fitted sheet). I look forward to seeing the photos.
That's a great idea! Though you may want to have less space between the slats as it may be slightly uncomfortable (without a mattress) as it is now.
AzureKeto3 years ago
Made this in twin size for my 6yo son's twin mattress! He loves it! 15yo asked for one for his twin bed - which will be the next project! Except he will get lessons in woodworking for his. Hubby doesn't mind assembly - but he thinks 15yo and mom need some quality time! LOL I If I could give this a rating it would have 5 for 5 PLUS! I did my homework and figured out what I needed for twin on my own. I had the boards cut for me. Me and hubby assembled it in less than two hours.
I found where I could rate this project and gave it a 5 star rating! :D
aeray (author)  AzureKeto3 years ago
And thank you for having the initiative to do your own homework.
aeray (author)  AzureKeto3 years ago
Thanks! Let's see pictures of your build.
This is absolutely the best plan I have seen so far for a platform bed. I have been searching for the most efficient bed to build for a month or so and this looks to be the one. Thanks!
aeray (author)  CrystalDesigner3 years ago
Thanks to you too. Pics?
stonechild4 years ago
This instructable is just great. I've been looking for a platform just like this for years. The only frame like this one that I 've found is from Ikea, but this is a lot less money. I thought about building it myself, but wasn't sure how to go about it without building something that would fall apart or ruin the mattress/futon. One other thing. Would it be possible to extend the slats beyond the edges of the frame? I would like to build a frame that would look like the mattress was floating off the floor. Thanks for creating the instructable.
aeray (author)  stonechild4 years ago
The slats overhang the frame by 3-1/2" on either side. You could probably narrow it a bit more, but it might make it tippy.
yeah baby...this sounds like a great project. Thanks for the ideas.
yeah baby...this sounds like a great project. Thanks for the ideas.
William D3 years ago I have never tried something like that before, but if you can do it, I can also try doing it. I personally feel that you have got all new ideas and you are a very creative person.

whatwasthat3 years ago
I built this bed yesterday also.  It is taller that I expected, but completely what I needed for my small bedroom...  AKA storage space. : )

I'm not good at measuring and had the locate Home center do all the cutting for me.  About 25 cents a cut, not to bad. 

I do however need a step stool to assist me in climbing into the bed.

Thanks this was a great project and nat at all difficult to put together.
mitchg_453 years ago
Thanks for the great Instructable!  I just built my bed yesterday!
aeray (author)  mitchg_453 years ago
sethg3 years ago
Thanks for the awesome plan! I looked at the cheapest frames at Ikea, etc and they were all over $200 and you still have to assemble it. So I looked up 'build a bed frame' and I got this page right away. I knew I could do it, it looked so easy!
I went to Rona (Canada) and had to buy pretty much everything needed (square, screws, drill, bits, lumber), they cut it for me no charge. The only issue was that they didn't have 14 foot so they recalculated with 12 footers and it was still low waste.
Back at home with the loot I put the whole thing together in a couple hours! It's very sturdy and looks nice! I especially like the 1.5 feet of clearance for under the bed storage!
In total I spent under $100 ($35 drill, $35 lumber, $20 screws, $5 bits and square) plus I have a drill out of the deal so I think I came out way ahead!
My only suggestion would be to predrill the holes for the legs, the first one I tried cracked the leg so I predrilled the rest and they were fine. I still used the cracked leg.. Other than that it looks the same as the pictures!
Thanks again!!
angelslink4 years ago
Help I really want to try and make this bed and am going to the store tomorrow with my list, but I don't know what Stb & btr fir larch is. I know I am showing how stupid I am but I would rather ask here then buy something wrong, and thank you for sharing these, I just bought a double size memory foam bed and needed a frame for it with storage space and high enough for this old lady to be able to get in and out of and it not be on the ground. Mary
aeray (author)  angelslink4 years ago
"Std & Btr" stands for "standard and better" grade framing lumber.
What size of bed are you making? If you want the bed to be the same height as the original, the legs should be 1'-9".
I am making a double size bed.
Awesome. Thanks for posting this. I built the full size today using (6) 1x4x10 (with ten pieces at 4'3 and eight pieces at 1'1") and (2) 2x4x10 (with two pieces at 5'6" and two at 4'0"). I made each of the legs 1'1" because there are shelves above my bed and I didn't want to make it so tall that I couldn't sit up in bed without hitting my head. It ended up being more expensive than I'd anticipated because the place where I bought lumber only at 2x4's that had been out in the rain or expensive dry Douglass Fir 2x4's and I went with the nicer quality.

In any case, it's a great design, doesn't squeak, seems to be quite sturdy and inconspicuous. Thanks.
HELP please, I am so happy I kept reading because I did think this was for a double bed. I copied what you wrote, 

 (6) 1x4x10  # 3 or better pine
10  pieces at 4'3        and       8  pieces at 1'1"
(2) 2x4x10 # 3 or better pine
two pieces at 5'6"     two at 4'0"

But I don't know what to do about the (2) 10' 2X4 Stb & btr fir larch or even what it is please help, I really wanted to try and do this within a day or two so I can use my new bed, I do want the legs as high as the directions please. And thank you,
with these dimensions for the boards crossing the frame being 4'3", its seems like they will only hang over the edges of the frame  1 1/2" on each side. The original layout has them hanging over 4" on each side, Will this effect sturdiness? also, did you still use 11 cross boards or did you use less because of the smaller frame. And how far apart were they spaced?

thanks im a new guy here.

The 1 1/2" overhang has been working out fine. They haven't gotten in the way and don't seem to negatively affect the sturdiness of the design. I used 10 cross boards in the end with (I believe) 3 1/4" between each.
aeray (author)  theamazingcareyb4 years ago
Glad to hear it. I'm also flattered that you have been a member for almost a year, and mine is the first 'ible that you have seen fit to comment upon. Thanks.
chuckr444 years ago
This project might be a candidate to use pallet boards for the cross members, if the pieces are big enough. Just sand them real good. I wouldn't use pallet wood for the structural pieces though. It tends to have more knots and weaknesses.

aeray (author)  chuckr444 years ago
I'm not positive, but I think that standard-sized pallet slats would work for a single or twin, but not for a queen.
THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU! I've been google'ing for 2 hours now & these are the easiest & cheapest. No frills, plenty of storage space, & easy for the 13 year old first-time builder & Dad to make for our son's room. I was thinking about a box design but he just needs something to hold up a mattress-I can sew a bedskirt. This will look so very nice in the black, red & skulls room he's got & it'll be easy to tear down for those 5 or 6 military moves coming up before hubby retires. *For those who want a custom bedskirt, find a friend who sews, supply the materials, measure the bedframe (the rectangles for the skirt on all 4 sides, plus the dimensions to the corner of the frame itself for the top-including the length you want the skirt), & go buy your sewer some sewing machine needles & a cool sewing gadget as payment. I've made them for toddler beds before-I don't like the froofy ones so mine are clean straight lines. That style will look great w/this bed.
CSMhousehold6 - regarding bedskirts:  Martha Stewart had a great idea a few years back.  Just buy 2 extra flat sheets in the color you want for the skirt.  Lay one on the slats lengthwise and the other on top of that, crosswise.  If you have to fold one or the other to make it fit, do the fold in the middle of the sheet and it will look like a pleat.  Simple, no need to measure or sew and it looks neat and clean (not "froofy").  Just put the mattress on top of both.
What a great idea! I actually wanted it to exactly match the other material I had put in the room (sanded down & painted the dresser black w/red "highlights", dark red & black curtains, throw pillows in the same colors w/grey & tan skulls on them). I took pictures way back when the room was all finished & have no idea where I put them. I'll take more. Because I measured incorrectly somewhere (much easier to fix when sewing than when sawing) I faked it, but it still looks great!
aeray (author)  zanne1014 years ago
Great idea, thanks. As tall as this bed is, though, you might have to use king-sized sheets. I'll have to investigate.
zanne101 aeray4 years ago
Yes, you might have to buy different size flat sheets than what you would normally use, but think of the time saved and hassle avoided.  And you can have a dust ruffle done in any color that they make in a sheet.  Usually dust ruffles only come in a few basic colors.

BTW, just came across your project.  It's a great idea.  I like what one person said about turning it (twin size) sideways and sliding part of it under some kind of bookcase/cabinet so it can be used for a seating unit.  I could easily make a wide bookcase/box designed with open space on the bottom.  And then I would hinge the top and store guest linens in it.  I like double duty ideas.  I hope to be moving soon and have my eye on a little one bedroom cottage, so I will need something for guests, but don't want a sofabed etc.
This might just do the trick with the cabinet.

Also, I will probably sand and slightly round off the slat ends - I have a habit of crashing into things when I'm in a hurry or not paying attention ;-}

Just another thought for those people who don't have an easy way to get the lumber cut.  I don't have the right saws or room either, so I have all the wood cut for my projects by our local cabinetmaker/woodworker.  I live in a rural area, so these guys usually work out of their garage etc. on their own property,  It's not like asking for this to be done at a big business,  I just make sure I'm real clear on the dimensions and quantity.  And, if the lumber yard doesn't have the wood I want, the cabinetmaker/woodworker usually has wood I can buy from him or he can tell me when he is getting a shipment.  It's worked really well for me.

aeray (author)  CSMhousehold65 years ago
Glad you like it, sorry you had to look for 2 hours to find it. Please post some pics when you get done. Also, if you are going to be repeatedly assembling and disassembling it, consider using "truss-head" or "cabinet installation" screws to put it together. You should still pre-drill for the legs, but don't countersink them.
mariedarcy4 years ago
This is exactly what I've been looking for.  I'm a retired senior; I'm moving to a tiny one bedroom apartment in a couple of months.  I have a queen pillowtop bed and boxspring on a metal frame -- but it's become too high for me.  I do, however, need the underbed storage space and I realize that the box spring is dispensable.  I've looked at all kinds of off the floor platform bed, but they're either too flimsy or too expensive (government pension = very little spare cash)
I live on Montreal, don't have a vehicle nor the skills to build this.  Is there someone in the Montreal area who would be willing to get the required materials and build this for me?  For a fee, of course!
aeray (author)  mariedarcy4 years ago
I'm glad you like it. I would suggest asking your friends and neighbors for "handyman" suggestions, or putting up a posting on the Montreal Craigslist. Failing that, an industrious and reasonably intelligent neighborhood kid could put it together easily, with nothing more than a handsaw, a tape measure, a screwdriver, and a square. Maybe the kid would do it for free if you bought the tools and let them keep them after.
talons4 years ago
This bed looks awesome but would it be possible to build it and leave the legs off, placing it either on sturdy shelving units or directly on the floor?  If I put it on the floor, should I treat the wood with any certain finish to seal it and keep if from staining carpet?

I would like to pre cut the boards at the lumber store and then take them to my apartment and build the frame in the bedroom.  Do you think that would be simple to do?  It's my first time building something big like this.
aeray (author)  talons4 years ago
Thanks for the interest. Please excuse the less-than-prompt reply; I've been out of town. The answers to your questions, in order, are: Yes, no, and yes.
hardyoyo4 years ago
 I built a twin version of this bed a while back, here's a modified shopping and cut list so you don't have to do the math. Buy: 3x 12' 1x4s, 1x 10' 1x4, 3x 6' 2x4s. Cut: from 2 12' 1x4s cut 4 2'10" slats; from 1 12' 1x4 cut 3 2'10" slats and 1 1'3" leg; from 1 10' 1x4 cut 7 1'3" legs; from 2 2x4s cut 2x 5'11" long frame pieces, from the last 2x4, cut 2x 2'3" short frames pieces.

OK, that's the idealized list. The reality is, in this class of lumber, if you're like me, you're going to over-buy, just so you can pick your way around the knots and gouges. So, be prepared to think fast when you get to the hardware store.
rtwitchy5 years ago
I have $30 and a 12-pack of beer! where do you live? lol. No I'm gonna try to build a full size version if I can get some tools...I was so spoiled with all my dad's tools but he moved....if you do happen to ive in Geaorgia though...
aeray (author)  rtwitchy5 years ago
I actually built one, took it apart, and shipped it to Florida after someone saw it on this site (I even threw in a screwdriver). I suggested that he just print off the instructions and find someone local, but he paid me $175 to do it anyway. Over $80 was shipping. This bed could be built with a handsaw, a screwdriver, and a hand drill, so good luck.
susieqaz1 aeray4 years ago
This is so perfect, and I'm going to build it with the handsaw and a hand drill. I moved to go to law school, and all my tools are in storage halfway across the country. I have a tiny apartment, and this is perfect! I wanted something that is simple, just the right size for the mattress and allows storage underneath. The bed will slide (like a trundle) under a bookshelf platform and be my couch during the daytime. The bedding will hide underneath. Other platform bed plans I've found were overkill, complicated and/or required purchasing storage cubbies. I sew, so I'll make a tailored dust 'ruffle' to cover the storage area. Thanks!
 Thank you for sharing your ideas!

I'm in a pretty similar situation. I really like the bookshelf platform idea. Do you have any details on this you would be willing to share?

I also like your dustruffle idea as a temporary solution, at least. I'm thinking of doing something similar but adding plywood hinged on top with handles on the bottom. I'll probably stain the whole thing to match the folding bookshelves and trunk I already have. :)
cfpax4 years ago
Is this really a Queen, or is it a Full size?

A Queen bed is 60"x80". A Full is 54"x75".
The final dimensions of this bed are 55"x76".
(The slats give a width of 4'7" or 55"; the length is 5'11" plus 3" for the top/bottom 2x4s plus 2" overhang. That's 6'4" or 76".)

A queen mattress would overhang a good 2-1/2" on each side, and I would worry about the corners of the slats digging into the mattress as you sat on it. The length overhangs 2" each end, or 4" at the bottom if there is a headboard or if the bed is pushed against the wall. Is this right?

A full would sit with 1/2" clearance all around; room for the mattress to squish down a bit. But then I imagine the ends of the slats would make sitting on the side of the bed uncomfortable.

If this IS a Queen, what dimensions should I use for a Full? The overhang (if desirable) suggests a full bed should be 49" x 71".
_Should_ the overhang be the same? Advice/recommendations?
Thank you!
aeray (author)  cfpax4 years ago
This is indeed for a queen. It is undersized so that 1) you don't bumb your legs on the slat ends 2) so that the slat ends don't show and 3) to make the most efficient use of common lumber dimensions.

As for the full size bed, dimensions are given multiple time in the Comments section.
cfpax aeray4 years ago
Thank you!
My apologies for not seeing the full-size dimensions in the Comments. I am new here and I only saw five or ten comments. I didn't see more until after I created an account (which I did to post my question). I don't know if seeing all the comments is limited to members or if I was just confused by the paging format.
In any case, apologies again for asking a redundant question.
And thanks for a nice Instructable!
aeray (author)  cfpax4 years ago
No problem. I can't remember if non-members can see all the comments, but the comments format can be confusing.
frazeeg5 years ago
Just to point out - structurally it does matter how you have the longer side of the leg oriented due to the bending moment of your frame, but it looks like you got it right anyway. I probably would have run a 2x4 under the middle of the bed lengthwise to cut down on the deflection in the middle, but that's just the structural engineer in me talking. Not like this has to stand up to a snow drift or anything ;-)
aeray (author)  frazeeg5 years ago
A tiny bit, but thanks for noticing. Also, absolute stiffness is not desired here. I find L/960 floors uncomfortable to walk and work on, and I wouldn't want to sleep on one. As I said in the intro, I avoid overbuilding for a variety of reasons.
OceanBlue aeray4 years ago
Alternatively, you could place the 2x4 in the middle just below L/360 of the slats which are spanning the width. This would ensure that you get the flex you want and that the boards would not fail if jumped on.
teeps OceanBlue4 years ago
 What does this mean exactly?  I made this bed, and it's great for the most part, but I am having issues with my mattress dipping in the middle and I was thinking of trying to add more rigidity to the bed before I shell out for a new mattress, just in case the flexibility of the bed slats is the culprit.  

Would the one long 2x4 down the middle be your best suggestion?  Or would this second suggestion by OceanBlue (which doesn't make sense to me in this language) be more appropriate?

aeray (author)  teeps4 years ago
Yes, another 2x4 down the center would help. OceanBlue is suggesting that it be attached slightly lower than the underside of the slats to maintain (but limit) the flex of the slats.
teeps aeray4 years ago
Perfect clarity!  I will report back when I have some time to try this.  I am actually excited at the possibility as the mattress replacement thing would be a much larger hassle than a 2x4.  
aeray (author)  OceanBlue4 years ago
Good idea, as I said above, and one I wouldn't have thought of. Or... no sarcasm or offense intended... I could just avoid jumping on the bed. Thanks.
These beds look pretty sturdy and I will be making a similar one soon, but how much weight would you say these things could hold?And how much trauma lol?

My boyfriend has a habit of actually hopping, jumping and sliding(fast) into bed so we've actually broken three of our box spring's slats that way.(Why we're making another bed,lol)

Seriously, I need a sturdy-*** bed.
aeray (author)  keikothemeowmeow4 years ago
As I noted in the intro, I am a big guy. If the weight was evenly distributed, this bed could probably hold 2000 lbs./900 kilos. As I also noted in the intro, I wouldn't jump up and down in the middle of it. Unlike a box spring though, broken slats on the bed are easy to fix, just unscrew the broken one and screw a new one back on. If you feel that you need a REALLY (ridiculously) sturdy bed, use 2x4's instead of the 1x4's and 2x6's instead of the 2x4's. It would probably increase the cost by about 40% but the process and measurements would be exactly the same.
tarala4 years ago
very nice, clean and cheap.... could also use the design with longer legs and slats closer together for a great table!
dbosshard4 years ago
Bed with side tables made up.
aeray (author)  dbosshard4 years ago
Thanks. Is the headboard attached to the bed or to the wall?
dbosshard aeray4 years ago
The headboard is attached to the bed. I lengthened the frame to account for attaching the headboard. The first picture is looking at the short leg from under the night table. The second is looking down the "long" leg-it is attached to a standard short leg and attached to the outside of the bed frame. I'm hoping that the pictures help. There may have been a better way to do it, but this was works great for me. The area where our headboard is I only had 7'2" of width in the room, so the 1x12 was cut to 7' to fit that area. This is my wood shopping list/cut list for a full size bed modified to with the night stands and headboard. (1) 8’ 1x12 #3&btr. ($6) (2) 10’ 1x4 #2&btr. ($5) (7) 10’ 1x4 #3&btr. ($3) (2) 10’ 2x4 ($2) (Total bed including screws was less than $50.00) (As a bonus we were looking at buying one of those air mattresses to go on this frame eventually because our bed had become so uncomfortable--the first night we found out that it was the box spring we used to use--the mattress on this frame is so comfortable neither my wife nor I realize when the other gets out of bed!) From the two #2&btr 1x4’s cut four pieces at 4’-6” each (Headboard) From four of the #3 & btr. 1x4's cut eight pieces at 4'-2" each. (slats) From one of the #3 & btr. 1x4's cut six pieces at 1'-3-3/4" (legs--modified for my tall mattress but to allow certain storage containers to fit under) From one of the #3 & btr. 1x4's cut two pieces at 4'-3-3/4" (headboard legs) From one of the #3 & btr. 1x4's cut one piece at 4'-3-3/4" (later modified to be 2'-2-3/4" as the center support of the headboard) and one piece at 4'-2" From each 10' 2x4 cut one piece at 3'-7" and one piece at 5'-9" Ultimately I had a little more scrap as I used 10' boards, but that was what I had available. I was also able to use nearly all of the scrap in other projects.
dbosshard4 years ago
Just finished with the bed, awesome project, thank you aeray. It is a full size with headboard and aeray's night tables. Thank you!!!
P8306146 (1).JPG
aeray (author)  dbosshard4 years ago
I'd also like to see a pic of it made up, with the side tables. My bedroom is so small that I can't get a good one.
dbosshard aeray4 years ago
Our new room is also very small. Thanks again, I've had a lot of comments on the bed, and the quality. My brother is a carpenter and was very impressed with the design, he is now planning on making a few of these for his hunting cabin. (cheap, lightweight, plenty of under bed storage, and sturdy).
aeray (author)  dbosshard4 years ago
Glad you enjoyed it, thanks a lot for the photos with the night tables.
ismarah4 years ago
Made one! My adjustment was to use an old futon base instead of the slats and so far so good. It's been at least 10 minutes and it hasn't fallen apart yet :-) I also added three extra legs, two on the wall side and one on the outward facing side as it has to carry a spring mattress and a futon mattress and my wood wasn't that good.
iamdoughyde4 years ago
I built mine today. It went very well and I like it a lot. The only issue I had was that my hardware store did not have 14' 1x4. I improvised by lowering the legs of the bed from 1'9 to 1'5. There was about 20 inches of 1x4 left over. (4) 12' 1x4 (2 slats, 2 17in. leg pieces each) (1) 10' 1x4 (2 slats) (1) 6' 1x4 (1 slat) The rest is the same.
Awesome design, love it. I have about $40 and 3 or 4 hours into building my full size model. Aside from dimensions, the only real thing i changed was the addition of rubber pads to the bottom of the legs. The bed was placed on a slippery wood floor and moved a little with any vigorous movements.
aeray (author)  Ronstoppable14 years ago
Thanks for the comment. We had the same situation, and I had cork pads at hand, so they were used instead, although I was more concerned about damaging the floor than the bed moving. Enjoy.
mantlemaven4 years ago
I just finished using this design for my select comfort king size bed... I was having trouble finding a sturdy frame that got the bed high enough off the ground, that I could use the space as storage, and designed effectively for the unique box spring construction of this type of bed.... I changed the width-wise slats to lengthwise (because the box frame goes the opposite way (not to mention it really just looks like two twin size box springs pushed together) and to save money I just cut the legs from the same pieces of wood as the slats... I used 1x6 for the slats and legs instead of 1x4's just thought I could use less of them and it seemed maybe more stable ( I have no idea if that is the case or not)... I also (like synaptic on page three of comments) put in an extra horizontal rail and leg for stability in the center of the king size bed, works great... but anyway I gained an extra 14in (height) of storage space under the bed now and I'm hoping to store my climbing and kayak gear underneath... Thanks so much for the design this was great, I think I spent $70, but I bought a lot of extra screws and some drill bits... Sturdy as can be, doesn't squeak or wobble, I was walking all over it and it was supporting my weight... GREAT DESIGN!!!
BeDub4 years ago
Great instructible! Can I use the same design for a king-size platform?
aeray (author)  BeDub4 years ago
Yep, with a few mods. Look through the comments. On page three Synaptyc gives the dimensions for a king.
darkstar14 years ago
You could probably make this into a gazebo if you made everything bigger
aeray (author)  darkstar14 years ago
You could just make everything longer, and not upsize the actual cross-sectional dimensions of the lumber, unless you were to make it really big, or if you live in a deep-snow area, or if you were going to grow heavy vines on it. Also, you would want to use cedar or redwood outdoors. You would also have to anchor it down well, or it would end up in the neighbors yard with the first high wind.
OceanBlue4 years ago
Hi there, great job on the simplicity and weight of the frame. I was looking to build a bed frame for fun for my friend and was stuck on the leg design and yours looks really strong. Thanks!
aeray (author)  OceanBlue4 years ago
You're welcome, and thanks for the comment below.
awry134 years ago
Excellent instructable. Please make more!
greybunny4 years ago
This is great, I should totally show this to my dad (he was a contractor.) I've been after him forever about the three R's when suddenly out of the blue he reads this article about a brick maker using like 89% pre-consumer product (by-products from like, battery makers and clay makers or something) and is doing very well with it. My dad is suddenly on the Rs. I guess it just has to be something interesting to him.
aeray (author)  greybunny4 years ago
Show it to him but make sure that he reads the entire intro...
moseph4 years ago
I built this bed and I really like it. Unfortunately I am being forced to move to the 3rd floor of a house with a tiny 19th century stair case and I was wondering what suggestions you have for modifying a previously existing bed to be easier to move. I know you have made the suggestion of cabinet screws, but I am wondering if I could also change something about the main body section of the bed because I think to move it requires more than just taking off the legs. I'm thinking it would be nice if I could make the main platform into two pieces, each approximately the size of a pallet. Can you think of any type of hardware that might help me accomplish this goal?
aeray (author)  moseph4 years ago
I built one for a guy in Florida, then took it apart (numbering all of the pieces) and then shipped it to him. With a cordless drill I had it completely apart in less than five minutes. As for hardware, I'm unaware of anything that would work off-the-shelf, but if you were willing to pay I'm sure that you could get something custom made.
thisgirl735 years ago
I built a full size version of this bed yesterday by myself. It's a great looking bed and far better than the annoying futon frame I had. I especially like the storage underneath and the sleek, delicate look. Many props to aeray for this wonderful instructable. Pros: low waste, simple, light, storage space, amateur carpenter's can build this I had to substitute some wood grades and sizes due to availability at Bed-Stuy Home Depot. I did all of my cuts in the basement of my building and constructed everything on the floor in my 3rd floor apartment. Supplies (Brooklyn, NY): -borrowed drill (roommate) $0 -borrowed rock and roll van $10 (for gas) -borrowed chop saw (landlord) $0 -borrowed sander to soften up splintered ends (roommate) $0 -(leftovers) #10 3" screws (already owned) $0 -(2 packs) #10 2" screws $11.74 -(2) 2x4s (doug fir) $6.24 -(5) 1x4x10s (pine no.2) $26.85 -1x4x8 (pine no.2) $3.84 -NY State sales Tax $4.08 MY TOTAL: $62.75 Advice: -absolutely buy the Torx screws! i stripped many, many phillips heads (that's wasteful AND frustrating. Trust me, I wanted to buy them, but no hardware store I went to had them). Next time I'll buy them online if I have to. -pre-drill holes as not to split the wood (Torx screws may facilitate this) -use a more powerful drill than i did (i used my roommate's low powered Ryobi) -use 2 drills if you can (1 to drill guide holes, the other to drill screws in) -have a friend help (major time saver) -be prepared with alternate measurements to adjust your wood order if your lumber yard doesn't have what you need. Home Depot did not have 14' boards, but I wouldn't have been able to fit them in the mini van. The longest I got into the van was a 10' board. I probably could've fit a 12'. -have a hot bath waiting. my back is killing me from working on my floor. If I could do it all over again, I'd definitely follow the above advice and I'd sacrifice waste and get (3) standard 2x4x8's instead of the doug fir 2x4x10's. It's the luck of the draw at your lumber store, i suppose. All in all, I am VERY happy with this bed and feel very proud to have accomplished building it. Thanks again aeray.
My local lumber yard (a small home owned place) allows for free cuts, so I bought 12' 1x4 (got to pick them myself) and they cut them into 6' for me ,I have a Ranger truck) They didn't have #10 Torq, so I had to go with #9, but they said it would work fine and it did. I wished I had two drills, because I went back and forth. But my total for a twin size was about 37.00. I am in love with making these, and I am wondering if I made more, if I could sell them around here. LOL
aeray (author)  wahela4 years ago
Excellent. I sold one to a guy in Florida, for cheap, but he paid the shipping, and I am in Idaho (although I shipped it from Walla Walla, Washington). I made enough so that it wasn't a waste of my time, so good luck with your potential business venture. As for the two drills part, and if your batteries can keep up (cordless, I assume), there are great drillbit/countersink/driver combos available that you just flip back and forth, tool-lessly without un-chucking them from the drill. PM me if you are interested, and I'll find you a link.
aeray (author)  thisgirl735 years ago
Thanks. Post a pic if you get a minute.
aeray (author)  aeray5 years ago
Oh, and your back would feel better if you had used sawhorses :).
wahela4 years ago
Here are pix of my twinsize and my little 1x4 tile bedside table. My chop saw (and now torq screws) are basically all I needed to do this. The only thing I could see that would make it easier is to have two screw guns, one with a drill bit, and one with a torq screw bit. Then you could switch back and forth. As it was, I switched back and forth pre drilling and then changing and screwing it in. It still only took me about three hours.
violetb4 years ago
Thanks for the great idea :D My first instructables project. (Being a EE student, I thought I would try one of those electronics project first.) But I needed a new bed, and the Ikea ones didn't quite fit my wish for a bed that was higher off the ground. Tried it out, and loved it! Even with not so great handy skills it turned out alright. Definitely an "anyone can do" project :) Never imagined that I would some day build a bed. I modified the twin dimensions a little, and managed to use 100% of the wood I bought.
aeray (author)  violetb4 years ago
Glad you liked it and thanks a heap for the photos.
jannvan4 years ago
Ok, I'm an amateur, but I love this and I'm going to build this. I have a slightly oversized queen mattress that was custom made for a previous life waterbed frame. The mattress width is OK, but the length is 84. So I wanted to make the platform 81 to allow just an inch of overhang to optimally support the mattress. Am I correct that I can lengthen the side and center rails/support to the correct dimension and that I would probably have to add one or two additional top slats to accomodate? I know it changes the number of 1 x 4 and 2/4 I need to get and the screw count. Thanks.!
aeray (author)  jannvan4 years ago
You are correct. Go for it!
wwhite4 years ago
A- Went to four lumber yards today and believe or not, Maine--being a premier lumber state--does not have Fir/Larch 2 x 4's!!?? I can special order them in fir and they are $22.63 EACH!!! (I can only get premium grade) Will cedar work??? I can get those. ($7.54) Would I need to double them? How about regular spruce/pine 2x4's if I use some carriage bolts and double them up and pair them side by side for each of the two rails. What do you think? (How many carriage bolts to keep them straight and strong? Thanks:)
aeray (author)  wwhite4 years ago
Spruce/Pine is fine, it's just out West (in Idaho) our common framing mat'l is hem/fir or fir/larch. Don't worry about the bolts or about doubling anything up. Just use your locally available material and build it as Instructed and everything will be fine.
wwhite4 years ago
We just downsized and moved into a new house. We are broke and this bed looks great!!! What adjustments, if any, would you recommend for the frame/project given the fact that we must use our existing queen box spring *along with* our mattress. Looking forward to building this with my wife. Thanks
aeray (author)  wwhite4 years ago
You have two options: 1) Get rid of the boxspring, and build the bed as is. Easy. 2) Make the legs shorter by the thickness of the boxspring, and make the bed 4" longer and 3" wider so that the ridged side part of the boxspring will have something to sit on. I would also put a few screws up through the slats into the wooden side parts of the boxspring to keep it from sliding around.
wwhite aeray4 years ago
A- Thanks so much for a quick reply. I'm really glad I asked:) Enjoy the day, -B
stitch1184 years ago
Great instructable with very easy to follow directions. Thank you so much. I have looked for several years on line both for one I could build myself or one I liked the look of (that didn't cost more than the mortgage!), before I found yours. I made mine in a cal king sized. Very easy to build (even for a girl), very tall with lots of storage space underneath. Bed feels very sturdy. Now my sister wants one too. One question for anyone, has the screws holding the legs onto the frame loosened on anyone's bed? Do I need to tighten them or apply liquid nails or something? Thanks. By the way aeray, great bread recipe too. Very easy to mix, form and bake. Whole family loves it. Now I just need to buy the book to try other recipes. Thanks.
aeray (author)  stitch1184 years ago
Glad you liked both 'ibles. As for the screws, checking them won't hurt, but I haven't had to re-tighten mine.
Leeannvon4 years ago
Can someone give me the dimensions for the twin size...this is exactly what I am looking for to put in my daughters bedroom.
aeray (author)  Leeannvon4 years ago
They are given several time in the comments...just scroll down.
emmy274 years ago
I hope I word this right....what is the height of storage space under the bed, aka, how tall of a plastic storage bin could I slide under the bed? Also, my son has a full mattress and I want to fit the bed frame into a "nook" in his room so as to be a couch, enclosed by the wall on 3 sides. The distance wall to wall is 76 3/4", and I assume I would want to take a 1/2" off the width of the slats (once converted to full size dimensions) so it would not scrape the walls. Do you have a list of supplies and measurements to convert to a full? I have read all the comments but can't seem to find one with a clear outline, without the person having "tweaked" your directions. I can follow directions but math and measurements are not my thing!! P.S. I've had a picture in my head for about a year of what I wanted and I'm so happy to have found it here = ) Thanks
aeray (author)  emmy274 years ago
Glad you are interested. I am slammed with other work and personal projects right now, but if you can wait a few days, I can help you out. Please PM me to remind me... thanks.
Rosepetals4 years ago
quick question could you give me the measurements if i wanted to make it a twin instead??
aeray (author)  Rosepetals4 years ago
Look through the comments. Several people, myself included, give the measurements for a twin.
Kyk5 years ago
....small correction, I want it to be 15" off the ground. Thanks!
aeray (author)  Kyk5 years ago
(10) 1 x 4s @ 3' (2) 2 x 4s @ 5' 6" (2) 2 x 4s @ 2' 5" (8) 1 x 4s @ 13-1/2" So, materials to buy: (2) 8' 2 x 4s (2) 12' 1 x 4s (to make (8) 3' pieces (1) 16' 1x4 (to make (2) 3' pieces and (8) 13-1/2" pieces I don't know what is available where you are, but here I would use redwood for the 2 x 4 mat'l, and cedar for the 1 x 4. DO NOT USE Trex or any other recycled/synthetic decking mat'l, it isn't strong enough. Make sure that you use exterior-type-screws, preferably stainless steel. Because the bed has been shortened to a twin, the slat spacing I give wont be quite right but it will be a good start. Good luck.
THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU! We are converting part of our exercise room downstairs to a teen "hang-out" with big flat screen on the wall. Only problem we have is that we can't fit a couch through our basement door and down the stairs. We didn't want a futon, and wanted to build a "couch" with a twin mattress and this will be PERFECT! We're putting it against the wall lengthwise and then adding a ton of large pillows for the back rest against the wall. SWEET!
aeray (author)  livingstones4 years ago
Thanks to you too. Good luck. If you have a slick (non-carpeted) floor you may want to put rubber pads on the legs so that it doesn't slide out from the wall while being used as a couch. I always enjoy pictures...
bnolsen4 years ago
Just another note (queen size). I ordered a 6" firm talalay mattress from foambymail which came in 2 days ago. This mattress is noticably wider than the previous queen sized mattress. Problem is the mattress overhangs the slats by 3" on each side which made me worry about damaging the foam when getting off of the bed. I ended up grabbing some 1x4x10's, cutting them in half and replacing the slats. That ended up with ~6 1/8" slat overhang on each side. Now it fits about perfect.
aeray (author)  bnolsen4 years ago
Is it just bare foam? I could see the overhang being a problem if it is, but watch your shins...
bnolsen aeray4 years ago
Did some more research and a latex mattress should have no more than 2.5" slat spacing, the less the better (seems 1.5" is suggested)
bnolsen aeray4 years ago
The mattress has a very sturdy cotton casing. Mattress overhang is about 1/4". No complaints about any scrapes. I had to put a stool by the bed since the 2 yro used to use the box spring to climb up. I have to really dig in an elbow to feel where a slat is/isn't.
bnolsen bnolsen4 years ago
Oh yeah, forgot. I ended up using SPAX screws with their torx head. #10 3.5" and #8 2.5"
susieqaz14 years ago
How would you modify the legs to allow for casters or wheels? It will be on carpet, so alternately, I could use some of those discs used for moving furniture.
alamsa4 years ago
How would you adjust this design to make a loft tall enough to put a desk under?
aeray (author)  alamsa4 years ago
This is addressed in a couple of places in the comments...
bnolsen4 years ago
After work one night I got the materials for a full sized bed and built it the next morning (about 1.5 hours). I didn't need to brace for square, my wife helped keep the slats coming and I used 6 point star screws. The legs are definitely high, here's a picture of a mattress and bedding with the old headboard leaned against the wall.
aeray (author)  bnolsen4 years ago
Great! Thanks for the photos, hope you had an easy time of it.
"6 point star screws" = Torx, but "Torx" is proprietary, I believe.
Are you going to build the king-sized version?
bnolsen aeray4 years ago
No, my parents bought us a queen sized headboard so we have to stay queen. I built a queen sized this morning using 14 slats instead of 11. ended up with 6.5" between each line and I added 1/4" extra to 4 of slat spacings (wife wanted a firmer platform). I also cut the legs at 1'4" instead of 1'9". 1'2" probably would have made the queen the same size as it was before. The box springs I disassembled and salvaged the wood. The newer one was just trash (quality wise). For the full sized I went with (home depot lengths): 4 1x4x12 2 leg/2 slat each 1 1x4x10 2 slats (18" waste piece) 2 2x4x10 frame queen sized (with shorter legs) 4 1x4x12 2 leg/2 slat each 2 1x4x10 2 slat each (also source of 2x10" waste) 2 2x4x10 frame Wastage is still very low, but having 16' 1x4s would have almost elimated the 1x4 wastage I had on the queen
aeray (author)  bnolsen4 years ago
The Despot has a crummy lumber size selection. I know that local lumber yards can be intimidating, because you lack "insider status" . I have worked in many areas of the West, and I have developed a strategy for dealing with unknown yards: go in with a concise list of what you want (in the correct format i.e. if you want six #3 and better 14' 1" x 4"s you would read it as "six one by four fourteen's, three and better" and go to the "contractor" counter if they have one. What do you intend to use the salvaged box spring wood for? Or did you use it for this project? As for firmness, perhaps I will edit the 'ible to point out that we sleep on an extra-firm Otis futon, so with a softer mattress, narrower slat spacing would be desirable. Good thinking. As a side note, the bed pictured in the 'ible is not our bed, but a bed I built for a friend and her fiance. They also bought an Otis extra-firm futon to put on it, and now they swear by it (as I do). Thanks for the feedback and the photos.
mspieg5 years ago
If you wanted to make it taller (not a loft bed, but a tall storage bed, big enough for two levels of drawers/shelves underneath, maybe 3' tall, do you think you'd need to add additional support to the legs? Or could you just make them taller?
aeray (author)  mspieg5 years ago
I would just use 1 x 6 boards for the legs instead of 1 x 4's.
tam0175 years ago
Awesome plan! I was looking for a cheap way to convert my two daughters' bedroom into a "cooler" room and they wanted this set from an expensive store: So, my questions are: can you give me dimensions for a twin bed? AND, you would be the most awesome carpenter ever is you had a plan for that little corner storage unit shown on the website. Nothing fancy, even a simple cube would work. I have the basic carpentry skills, but can't come up with something without *instructions*
aeray (author)  tam0175 years ago
Scroll down through the comments to find the twin conversion measurements in a few places, I think. As for the corner unit, if I get time I'll see what I can come up with, but it may take a while.
b.medusa5 years ago
was googling for instructions to convert a conventional queen-size bed (headboard, footboard, metal side rails) to a platform bed, & stopped looking when i found your beautiful design, complete w/ very thorough instructions. would you mind giving me the modifications to accomplish that type of conversion? the top of the mattress i currently have is 24" above the floor, w/ 11" clearance under the bed. the goal is to maintain the height, or not exceed 26", & increase storage space underneath.
aeray (author)  b.medusa5 years ago
I'm not sure that I understand your goals, but I would suggest getting rid of the side rails and footboard and boxspring (and possibly the headboard). To adjust the height of the bed, add 1-1/2" to the thickness of the mattress and then subtract that from the desired height (26"?). Use this new number instead of the 1'-9" that I have listed for the leg length. If you want to keep the headboard, just lean it against the wall behind the bed, or do the motel trick and attach it directly to the wall (and not the bed)
greymoon5 years ago
Hello! My fiance and I plan on making this bed and I have a question. We were hoping to give it a more tailored look by lengthening the top and bottom frame boards and making them flush with the slats. Would this make the structural integrity of the bed weaker? Also - do you think it might be possible that this could be adjusted to create a loft bed?
aeray (author)  greymoon5 years ago
That would make the bed weaker because it increases the span of the slats. A better option would be to use additional lengths of 1x4 or 1x6 to "box in" the ends of the slats, attaching them on edge to the ends of the slats. (Think of building another, larger frame similar to the 2x4 frame, but out of 1x that would encircle the bed). For a loft bed, I would use (2) 2x4's for the legs oriented as for the 1x, or a single 4x4, and you should add (2) fairly long 45 degree "knee braces" on each leg. These can be of 1x material. If you are confused, I could probably e-mail you a sketch.
aeray (author)  aeray5 years ago
Oh, and greymoon, because the slats are a bit shorter than the mattress is wide, they don't show when the mattress is in place and the bed is made up. Check out the picture cam6ell posted on the second page of comments to see what I mean. Maybe you don't have to change anything at all.
greymoon aeray5 years ago
Yeah, I think I'll just stick to the plan. Seems like alot of waste to add a second frame. Maybe a support beam through the middle? If all else fails. I can sew and might go with the bed skirt idea. Thanks for your help, aeray!
Thank you so much. Fiance and I built this frame today for a king-size bed. We're sleeping on it tonight! You're a God-send!
aeray (author)  LifeLongLearner175 years ago
Glad you enjoyed it. Don't forget to thank Synaptic for the king conversion.
Synaptyc5 years ago
I built my KING Platform from this design. I scaled it up just a bit.
The end result is perfect! I have a Memory Foam mattress (4 layer) and the height is great. Not too high... and not too low. In fact, We have 12"s of clearance to put storage bins under the bed.
Total time to build:
Cuts = 20 minutes (talking to father as we cut.)
Assembly = 1 hour and 15 minutes. (while watching a Titans game)
[below are my measurements]
cut (2) 2x4's @ 68" (run horizontal for top and bottom)
cut (3) 2x4's @ 71" (run vertical. third one is for middle support)
cut (10) 1x4's @ 16" (made 5 legs. 5th goes in the center of the middle support)
cut (11) 1x4's @ 72" (slats)
I used phillips screws and had no issues.

THANK YOU FOR THIS DESIGN!!! The Bed is as sturdy as any factory job.
So simple.
king_bed(1).jpgking_bed (2).jpgking_bed (3).jpgking_bed (5).jpg
Synaptyc, where did you find that bed skirt? It goes perfectly with the design. Thanks!
Target ... MANY years ago (_)
aeray (author)  Synaptyc5 years ago
Excellent! Thanks for the photos. Now people can stop asking me how to convert this into a king. As for the phillips head screws, I recently purchased a 18-volt lithium-ion Makita impact driver (only weighs a couple of pounds and it will take the lug nuts off of my truck) and it works well for smaller phillips head screws in softer woods. That said, I still prefer other drive options.
This sight is a God-send. We've been trying to figure something out that would be simple and doable and this fills the bill. My husband and I are going to try this in a full size and a Cal King version. As we are novices, any chance of someone giving us the substitute dimension cuts? I'm afraid we will mess it up if we try to calculate on our own!!! Would be willing to ship you that 12 pack...
aeray (author)  lasairiona5 years ago
Use Synaptycs dimensions, but subtract 2" from the slat length and add about 6" to the longer 2x4 dimension.
At29035ft5 years ago
A fantastic Instructable! As a novice to any sort of carpentry, I was able to follow the instructions step by step with ease. Aeray deserves some serious props for designing an affordable, sturdy, low-waste bed. One point to those considering the project, as mentioned previously, Home Depot rarely carries 1x4’s over 12’ long. As such, I had to purchase a few more planks than originally anticipated. I’d recommend you find a lumber yard, as Aeray suggests, they might have the 14’ wood. All in all, I couldn’t be happier. Be prepared for some serious storage space under the bed, they weren’t kidding when they said it was tall.
aeray (author)  At29035ft5 years ago
Thanks for the props and the pics. Glad you liked it. Down with Home Despot!
joannelee5 years ago
A bed a girl can build! Thanks for the clear, simple plans. I scaled it down to a twin with the intention of building two for my guest room -- set up in an "L" for daytime couches and then have either two twins or a double (pushing them together) for guests. Made the first one this weekend.

It took me longer than estimated -- I never know whether to count that extra trip to the hardware store or not ;) I didn't buy the torx screws the first time around -- big mistake. After stripping 3 or 4 phillips head screws, I finally went and found the right thing. It made a huge difference and the rest of the project went smoothly.

It's a very stout bed! I made the legs 14 inches and with a twin mattress it's higher than couch height but I can live with it (or rather my guests can ;).

Thanks, again.
Kyk joannelee5 years ago
I want to have the wood pre-cut, can you please share the measurements used for the twin size...Thanks! AND I'M HAPPY TO KNOW THAT ITS A BED A GIRL CAN BUILD! :)
joannelee Kyk5 years ago
My notes are a little ragged. Looks like a standard twin mattress is 39" X 75". I think I did 30" X 68" on the 2 X 4's for the base. And the slats were 38.5" if I'm reading this right. If I were to do it again, I'd make them a bit narrower (maybe 36"). And I agree, shorter legs would be better. Hope this helps.
aeray (author)  joannelee5 years ago
36" for the slats is what I suggested. Kyk, look below for the rest of the dims. And thanks, joannelee.
The kayak is from a Pygmy kit (, their Coho model. Took a little longer to build than the bed but well worth the investment. Terrific boat!
aeray (author)  joannelee5 years ago
Glad you liked it, and thanks for the pics. Nice kayak, too.
rasphswirl5 years ago
Thanks for the great instructions! No problems putting it together! Did it in less than 8 hours from trip to the hardware store to laying down on it. Hardest part was keeping my drill charged. I made the legs 10" and it is a perfect height for me.
aeray (author)  rasphswirl5 years ago
At least you had a nice place to sleep after your days work :)
Kyk5 years ago
Hello...hope this doesn't drive you crazy, but I need your help. I am having the wood pre-cut , I want to make it in twin size, I only want it to be 10" off the ground and I also want to use outdoor wood, as this will be on my patio. What should I get?
jbryant235 years ago
Hi there. I'm going to have them precut the wood for me at my local hardware store. What exactly should I get for a full sized bed?
aeray (author)  jbryant235 years ago
From three of the 14' 1x4's cut nine pieces at 4'-3" each. From the fourth 14' 1x4 cut one piece at 4'-3" and five pieces at 1'-9" From the 10' 1x4 cut one piece at 4'-3" and three pieces at 1'-9" From each 10' 2x4 cut one piece at 4'-0" and one piece at 5'-6" This will give you a little more waste than the queen, and you will end up with an extra slat.
patrick_b5 years ago
What size of bed does this exact design accommodate? i have a double bed so will i have to expand this template?
aeray (author)  patrick_b5 years ago
This is for a queen 60" x 80" mattress. For a double, 54" x 75", shrink the slats and the shorter 2x4's by 6" and shrink the longer 2x4's by 5". The layout dimensions I have given will be close enough, if you omit one slat.
Scotty25 years ago
I really like this design! My wife and I are super-allergen sensitive so something this clean and well-ventilated and easy to clean under is a plus. Her rule is "nothing stores on our floors." We're also a little short on storage space and wonder if you have any ideas for a simple way to hang some drawers underneath. I thought about adding some slats a little way down to make a shelf and be able to slide some shallow storage boxes in, but like the idea of an actual drawer on gliders better. Your thoughts? Thanks so much for any time you can spare on a reply!
Scotty2 Scotty25 years ago
Thanks - I think we'll try the hanging basket idea. There won't be much weight, just clothes. Elfa makes some baskets that should work well and I can hang a rack like you describe.
aeray (author)  Scotty25 years ago
An easy way, but I don't know if it meets your criteria, is to put casters on the boxes. If you would like for them to actually hang from the bed, find/build some boxes/bins with flanges on the top edge ( I've seen plenty of cheap plastic storage bins that this would work with). Then think the about the wineglass racks that the glasses hang upside-down from, basically inverted T-shaped rails installed parallel to each other ( like this: If you are going to be putting a lot of weight in the bins though, consider doubling up the longer 2x4 members of the bed.
Do you think if you put hinges on two of the legs , a hing in the middle, and some kind of rienforcement to keep it from folding when it's in the "bed position, that maybe you could turn this into a futon?
Beautiful Instructable. I built this last night with a friend and finally got to pull my mattress off the floor, which was fantastic. Very sturdy, no squeaks or anything. There's only one suggestion I'd make: Pre-drilling all the holes in the legs (for both the building and attachment screws) was a necessity to avoid splitting my 1x4's. This may be largely because of the questionable quality of the lumber I had to use, but I figure a little extra caution can't hurt. As I said, you did a fine job of designing this bed. Thank you for sharing this with us.
ravenc835 years ago
small error on mattress size is a bit off, a queen size mattress is 60 x 80. what you have up is for a full mattress. i found this out after i built my own, beside the mislabeling it is a great design.
aeray (author)  ravenc835 years ago
This bed is indeed for a queen size mattress. The frame dimensions are undersized to use common lumber lengths more effectively and, more importantly, to allow the mattress to hang off a bit so that you don't bump your legs and to conceal the rough unfinished ends of the slats. We use this exact bed for a queen futon, and it works fine.
drissel5 years ago
Oops, a board foot, bd ft, is 12" x 12" x 1" = 144 cu in.

Great design,
Bill Drissel
aeray (author)  drissel5 years ago
Thanks. After 8 months on the site you are the first to catch my mistake. The math should still be right though (although I use a fractional calculator, so there is a bit of a rounding error). I just type pretty slowly, so my mind often gets ahead of my fingers.
tornadobass5 years ago
My daughter and I built a twin size version today. The twin is a bit shorter, so it used one less slat. I also made the legs 14" and widened the 2x4 frame slightly to give it a bit more stability. With a pillowtop mattress, it's still plenty high off the ground. We ended up drilling through all the slats after one of the first ones cracked. Maybe really dry wood or the cold temps in the garage? With the drill press, this part went quickly. And then the cordless drill drove the screws into the 2x4 frame. We used 2" multipurpose square-head screws for the slats, but went with 1-5/8 fine thread drywall screws to join the two leg parts with less chance of cracking. It was a handy idea to use a piece of scrap to measure the overhang of the slats. We only hung them over 2", so we just drew a line with a square. Our house was flooded last June and my daughter will sleep tonight on her mattress off the floor for the first time since then!
theflin5 years ago
I just finished this project (the king size version) and I am thrilled with the results. It took me a few hours to finish because I don't get around so well. I am well pleased with the results. It is very stable. I have nothing but compliments for the author and one small suggestion. Stay with the pilot holes and counter sink holes all the way through.
aeray (author)  theflin5 years ago
Thanks, but also give props to Synaptyc for the king version. Perhaps in the future I will update the 'ible to include single, twin, and king versions. As a side note, and you can respond privately, I am intrigued by any other comments/benefits/drawbacks/modifications that you may suggest, based on your "...I don't get around so well" comment. Let's make it easy for everyone. As for the countersink suggestion, did you have problems with splitting out the 1x's, or were you primarily concerned with the final "fit and finish" of the product?
theflin aeray5 years ago
I didn't mean to short Synaptyc at all. His cuts were right on. I had a few boards split when making the legs, other than that I was thinking that drilling the slats would probably have sped things up on the assembly. Also all the positive feedback here encouraged me to try this project to start with. Oh and this is the first Instructable I have ever tried. So thanks again.
aeray (author)  theflin5 years ago
What type of scews did you use? Torx, Robertson, Phillips, or other?
theflin aeray5 years ago
I used phillips cause that was all the big box store I got the material from had. I was planning to use torx if I could have found them.
I made this a few months ago. The Instructable is easy to follow and the bed is supper sturdy. This was an excellent project. Just one word of warning, this is a really tall bed. Thanks!
aeray (author)  cericericeri5 years ago
Thanks for the pics and the comment. It is tall... just tall enough for those cheap plastic storage bins to fit underneath.
samjguess5 years ago
I just finished building the frame and my wife loves it. Because we have an extra thick pillowtop mattress I had to trim 4 inches off the legs. It was an excellent project and took me just under 2 hours to complete.
aeray (author)  samjguess5 years ago
Glad you liked it. I've built several now, and each one goes together faster than the last.
koekkoek5 years ago
What are the dimensions when finished? Does anyone know? Thanks
aeray (author)  koekkoek5 years ago
Then platform itself is 4'-7" x 1'-10 1/2" x 6'-1", but a queen mattress is 5' x 6'-8", and anywhere from 6" to 14" thick.
anjsantana5 years ago
LOVE this bed!! Wondering if you have some instructions to make a 8' by 8' loft bed like this!!!
Aside from the headboard on wall trick: a freestanding folding screen, a large poster, a wall mural, Curtain rod and drapes, Large wooden bow and netting valence, long mirror hung horizontally, wooden shutters, French doors, fire place mantle, free standing shelf with wide visible base with/without hooks, quilt art, bulletin board, padded-quilted-ribboned-note/picture holder, framed lattice section. Ideas abound and you can probably find something that you collect to display above the bed. A simple trick for decorating the legs would be to route a design around the bottom or add decorative molding. A finished height of about 17 inches to top of the mattress when placed on the platform frame makes a good seating height. Lots of chairs range from 17 to 19 inches. A 17 inch height is good for the about 5 foot person. Taller persons would want their bed higher. I'd suggest measuring your favorite chair's seat height to get your desired height (including mattress thickness). This looks like a good project for those of us without a truck. Personally, I want to make an extra long twin platform frame with the seated height on the bed coming to about 18 inches for a 5'10" user who's still growing. Want to keep it short enough to go through doors without dismantling when moving; will Not be attaching a headboard. Can place the whole thing in the center of a room like a bench if necessary.
i appreciate your input but i long for a simple headboard to lean against while i read in bed
aeray (author)  mcglunk5 years ago
1) Make the last (headboard end) slat only 4' long and shift it towards the foot of the bed so that the slat is flush to the 2x4 frame on three sides. 2) Make the headboard end legs 2' - 3' longer and attach them to the outside, rather than the inside, of the 2x4 frame, letting them stick up past the frame. 3) Add 4' slats horizontally between the "uprights" that the longer legs now form. If this is confusing, I can clarify it, or possibly send a sketch. I'd also like to see a pic of the finished product.
aeray (author)  aeray5 years ago
Oh, and a slightly related modification I have been thinking about for mine is to replace the last 2 (head end) slats with a 1x12 that sticks out another 24" on each side of the bed. Instant integrated side tables! If I get around to it, I'll post a pic.
Looking at the design, a simple rectangle with 2" by 4" rectangle going up to desired height, with appropriate spacing/block or cut out to attach to frame along with slats to stay in design should work. Finish with top piece. Idea: Top with flat shelf with flush side towards mattress for book ledge, lighting clamp surface or place to hold glass cup, could even drill hole to secure beverage.
mcglunk5 years ago
Thanks for the encouragement to refrain from overbuilding. I have been inspired by your plans and I am using them as a guide. I have a number of variations due to restraints of space and utilizing some scrap wood. My one challenge is that I need a headboard for purposes of comfort an privacy that will not be against a wall. Any ideas will be much appreciated.
olilis5 years ago
I would like to build this for my daughter as twin bed. Can you give measurments for that? I don't want to waste wood or money if I get it wrong. Thank you.
aeray (author)  olilis5 years ago
Just subtract 21" from the slats (1x4s) and from the (2) shorter 2x4s. You might also want to shorten the legs 4"-6" as it might get tippy.
krowii5 years ago
Seems pretty awesome, but a comfort rail around the perimeter would be nice (to avoid scraping your leg, etc. on the bare slats)...and to protect the slats from snapping if something gets caught on the them and pulls them too hard (e.g. a blanket).
aeray (author)  krowii5 years ago
Thanks for the comment. I initially thought about this, but the slats are only 4'-7" long and a queen mattress is 5' wide, so the mattress overhangs the slats by 2-1/2" on each side (actually a bit more with a futon). I just went into the bedroom and gave it a try, and I had to kick it pretty hard to feel the slats.
aggiea15 years ago
This is brilliant! Since I have low ceilings I will cut the legs a little shorter. Thanks, you just helped me save a few trees and avoid paying NYC prices for a platform bed.
Romaida5 years ago
Great instructable. I'd like to make a king size platform. Can anyone tell me what would change in the material and measurements? Thanks!
AzureKeto5 years ago
Am going to have my husband look at this and make a bed frame for my 17yo son... this is an awesome idea.. will downsize it for a full size mattress instead of a queen... And thinking some slight mods would work for a king (center support for larger mattress).. thank you for posting this.. logged it as a favorite.
aeray (author)  AzureKeto5 years ago
Thanks. All you have to do to downsize it to a full size (54" x 75") is shorten the slats by two inches.
biginjapan5 years ago
just finished this one. wife had friends from work over and they all loved it! Thanks for the plans. I can post pics if anyone is interested, it looks the same though, just a different room. :)
aeray (author)  biginjapan5 years ago
I'd like to see pics, if you've got a minute.
what's up...can I see pics of your bed as I want to build one this weekend...thanks
Pumpkin$5 years ago
lol i don't know why this shows up on related ibles' because it's not global warming related lol
aeray (author)  Pumpkin$5 years ago
Using less lumber= cutting less trees.
russmbuilds5 years ago
Could we use all 2x4s instead of a mixture of 1x4s and 2x4s? We are getting reclaimed wood and 2x4s are abundant whereas 1x4s are hard to come by.
aeray (author)  russmbuilds5 years ago
Using 2x4's is fine, and bonus points for using reclaimed lumber. The bed will be a bit stiffer, though.
aeray (author) 5 years ago
(removed by author or community request)
emellaich aeray5 years ago
aeray, I assume that your comment above was for thehessonfamily who was thinking about a king sized bed? I'm thinking you meant to reply and the system stuck your reply in the wrong place. Is this correct, or are you recommending this for others? Thx
kellusion5 years ago
I finally got around to building one of these yesterday, almost exactly as described. My only modification was that I made the legs a bit longer for extra storage space underneath. I have a really small room. It's rock solid though and I rather love it. I'm not concocting plans for a sort of rolling dresser that slides under the bed when I'm not needing it. :)
oops "not" should have been "now"...
emellaich5 years ago
I love your bed, and I do plan on building it. Can you give me your feedback on one modification? I understand your comments about not needing bolts. However, as one small type of over-engineering, I was thinking about cutting one of the legs shorter and resting the siderail on top of the short leg. It appears to me that the siderail carries most of the weight, and this modification would have the weight carried in compression across the entire width of the lumber instead of through the two screws. I've attached a very sloppy illustration to help describe this point. You could rest the entire frame on both legs, but it seemed to me that you might have a stability problem. I thought that one short, one strong might get the stability and the strength. However, I am a novice carpenter, so I am quite open to feedback if you don't think this would work. Michael
leg detail.jpg
aeray (author)  emellaich5 years ago
This would actually weaken the bed. While the vertical load would be transferred effectivley, you are decreasing the lateral strength of the leg by eliminating one plane of attachment. When the bed was loaded from above, and received a push from the side, the leg to rail connection would probably fail. The shear strength of the screws as I designed it is actually huge, and wov't fail.
emellaich aeray5 years ago
Thanks, I was wondering about that. Since I am pretty inexperienced at this, and you are a carpenter, I guess I should just trust your design ideas, and quit trying to 'improve' things. :)
aeray (author)  emellaich5 years ago
Thinking is good. More people should do it more often. I also wanted to note that each leg is held on by four screws-- each section of each leg is attached to a siderail.
#10 screws are a little over 3/16 in diameter, isn't there a risk of splitting the 1x4s when making the legs? The instructions only call for predrilling the shorter 2x4s of the frame. I've had trouble with splitting the wood when drilling on the narrow edge. No one else seems to have had this problem, but if someone could address it directly, I'd appreciate it. I'd hate to buy all this lumber and hardware only to find I didn't prep properly. No one else seems to have had a problem with the screws, but
aeray (author)  PetroleumJelliffe5 years ago
Go ahead and predrill both pieces if you are concerned about it. they definitley could split if the lumber is very dry or checked.
jcampbell5 years ago
I couldn't find #10 screws at decent price, ended up using #6 for the 2" and #8 for the 3". Thus, I was splitting the 1x4" boards on the legs. I ended up subbing 2x4" on the part of the leg that were getting capped. (Imagine an "L" with a fatter upper section.) So far, I'm enjoying the storage space and the increased firmness, compared to the carpeted floor. Thanks for the great instructable!
netikerti5 years ago
Would using Metal legs for furniture, lets say from Ikea, work for this project? they run about $19 for 4 4 legs. or different prices if bought separate? I'm not too sure about the wooden legs. I'm not liking them too much, but I do like the bed itself. Or what else can I use that's inexpensive for legs?
aeray (author)  netikerti5 years ago
They should work fine, but you may have to add a little blocking to attach them to. As far as other cheap options, you could dress up the wooden legs by painting them , or by cutting a taper in them (from 3 1/2" at the top to 1" at the bottom) or go to a junkyard, dump, or secondhand store and pull the legs off another piece of furniture that you like.
emellaich aeray5 years ago
Another thing you could try for legs ... HD, and Lowes (in the US) sell wood that has been shaped on a lathe (I assume) for use as posts on stairs and other uses. It's definitely a bit long, but you could cut it down to size.
netikerti aeray5 years ago
thanks soo much. that gave me an idea...maybe i can find used legs on ebay, or craigs list. I wonder if i can find some free ones? Thanks!! By blocking? what do you mean by that? can't i just screw them from the bottom of the bed? the ikea ones come with holes in them already. sorry i dont know much about building furniture, but i do have a saw i bought for a sculpture class for wood and cutting plastic.
aeray (author)  netikerti5 years ago
It depends on the configuration of the legs. Send me a link w/pictures when you get settled on a leg type, and I'll check them out.
i am wanting to make a king size version this weekend... should i do anything different like putting more support in the middle somehow..?
Calorie5 years ago
I like it. I had a bed by Ikea that was similar. The slats were linked by a fiberglass strap. They rested in a framed bed "pan" (no idea what to call it.) They strengthened it by having a cross brace of meta (or maybe it was cable?) l running from corner to corner. I miss that bed. Perhaps one thing that can be done to ease the worries of squeaking would be to just to commit to with the permanence (liquid nails comes to mind.) Or another idea (albeit a more timely one) would be to cut up an old bicycle inner tube and use it as a type of felt. But I do agree with you that I don't think it's an issue. Nice job and keep up the good work!
thomas_c5 years ago
Nice one! I'm in the process of re-organizing my room and a new bed would be welcome, too. The only problem that I have with your instructable itself is that I have no clue what "#3" is supposed to mean in connection with lumber. I take it it's a unit to gauge the quality of the wood? Apart from that I, it's all fine and dandy (although I have to convert all the measurments to metric, but that's just tedious, not really challenging.)
aeray (author)  thomas_c5 years ago
Good luck. You are correct that the "#3 and better" is a grade of softwood lumber, in the US (and I assume Canada). The grade of the lumber is based on the probable strength of the lumber, not its appearance. The grade of the lumber is the determined stick by stick at the lumber mill by a trained professional lumber grader and is printed on the lumber along with the mill code and a few other codes and numbers. "#3 and better" is a cheap, less strong grade. As far as the metric conversions, a simpler solution would be to buy an English-measure (feet/inches) tape measure.
jon.karak5 years ago
Did you consider using resin paper or felt to reduce the chance of developing squeeks?
aeray (author)  jon.karak5 years ago
I did, but I figured that I'd give it a try without it, and I haven't noticed any yet. What would work better, if you are still concerned, is a 1/8" bead of subfloor and deck adhesive.
teeps aeray5 years ago
could you explain where exactly you would be applying either felt or the adhesive on the bed design?
aeray (author)  teeps5 years ago
I would apply the glue in 1/8" bead to all wood-on-wood joints. Please note that this is subfloor and deck adhesive, not wood glue, and while it does provide some strength, it mostly just keeps adjacent wood parts from rubbing on each other. I haven't had any issues with mine though. Oh, you also might also be referring to the felt pads on the bottom of the legs to keep them from marring my hardwood floor. Do either of those answers answer your question?
teeps aeray5 years ago
Very helpful thanks. I still have to go through a re-tighten all the screws but it definitely has a little squeak to it. It seems like I can just keep on screwing into that pine forever, perhaps I pre-drilled too deep? How do you deal with the softness of the wood?
stepmr5 years ago
I'm in Montreal, and the lumber yards seem to only carry grade 1 pine at $3 a foot. Yikes. Do you have any alternative wood ideas? I mean its almost cheaper to build the entire thing out of spruce 2x4's... any ideas?
aeray (author)  stepmr5 years ago
Spruce would work fine. I don't know about the availability in Montreal, but lumberyards here in the Northwestern US often carry 1x spruce as a cheaper alternative to cedar for fascia and exterior trim. It is roughsawn, but only on one face, so I don't think that it would be a problem.
camp6ell5 years ago
Great instructable - decided to build a bed quickly one day to finally get the mattress off the floor. It only less than a couple of hours to build, and used all stock/scrap wood apart from the 10 one-by slats, which cost me $23. Have been using the bed for a couple of weeks now and it is super strong. I stupidly made the legs too long, but I guess that means we can store more under it. See the 2nd pic for the one mod I made - instead of screwing the one-by legs to each other, I used a scrap 2x2 on each leg. I felt that this would work better for me because I used really rough grade one-bys for the legs.
aeray (author)  camp6ell5 years ago
Looks good to me- no such thing as too high in my opinion. Thanks for the pics, too. The "scab blocks" are a good idea. Also, as it may not be clear in the 'ible, the scrap blocks on top of the legs are just temporary, for spacing, and may cause squeaking if they are not removed. I thought i could see them in one of your pics.
camp6ell aeray5 years ago
ohhh, yes... i didn't read that bit properly! so, i did leave the top scab blocks in place. they seemed to offer some extra rigidity all-round, so it seemed natural at the time to leave them. no squeaking yet, but we'll see...
Amir5 years ago
Thanks for the super sweet instructable. This couldn't have been more perfect for me, as I've got a queen sized mattress that's been laying on the floor over a year. I've also got many of those ubiquitous storage containers that you spoke of, and a shortage of storage space. I built it to your specifications, other than making one side flush for the future addition of a headboard. It's as solid as it should be, and the only issue we're having is vertigo!
bed 004.JPGbed 007.JPG
aeray (author)  Amir5 years ago
Thanks. I'm glad someone got back to me after they had built one. Any recommendations for editing? As for the headboard, you could try the cheap motel trick-- just screw the headboard to the wall behind the bed.
paul2006 aeray5 years ago
I just built one as well. I don't have pictures though. I ran into a few issues with the size of the boards you recommended. I went to Home Depot (closest lumber place for me) and they only had 6, 10, and 12 foot 1x4 boards. I ended up going with: 7 - 10 foot 1x4s 2 - 10 foot 2x4s I had a bit more waste than you did, but the cost was still relatively low. I found the bed to be VERY sturdy and had no problems at all with the build. My only recommendation is to make it lower if you're not going to use the storage bins. My mattress is 12" high, so the top of the bed is almost at my hip level (34-35" from the ground). I have to hop up to get in bed and hop down to get out again. I'd prefer a lower bed myself, and I'll probably be cutting the legs down by about 6-7" this weekend. However, this is a very nice bed frame for a low cost. Great job!!!
aeray (author)  paul20065 years ago
Great! Thanks for the comment. As for lumber, I have much better luck getting what I want, size and quality-wise, at local yards. Also, since I do this professionally, they all know me and tend to be quite helpful-- thirty bucks for a bed now, but next week I could be ordering a $60,000 framing package. In any case, going local helps. The feedback about the height is good, as my mattress is only about 8" thick and I am quite tall, so sizing it down to a more "average" size could be good. Amir (see above) complained of vertigo with his.
paul2006 aeray5 years ago
No problem. Thanks for the great plans! I can see how a local yard would work better. There might be one around here and I just don't know it. I'm still new to my area. I ended up taking about 8" off the legs and now the bed is perfect! It's just the right height for my mattress. I think the total height of the bed ended up at 26.5" (top of the mattress to the ground). I'm not sure if that would alter the lumber needs. I might have been able to figure out a way for less waste if I had gone with legs that were 13" high from the start. Just the same, thanks for the great instructable!
This looks like just what I need! Wow, thanks for posting this! I will make this but I would like your advice on two things before I start. 1) I have a double bed. Should I make any changes to the design (other than to adjust all width measurements)? 2) I have an air /sleep number mattress. I think maybe the slats might not be good for it - I'm thinking that I might need a flat surface? Should I attach something flat over the slats? Or just put the slats closer together? Or don't use slats and use something different? Currently I have the air mattress on my old box spring and frame, but I desperately want to get rid of that. It's awkward and unnecessary and would rather have the storage space underneath, so your design sounds like the perfect answer. I appreciate any advice you can give me on this. Thanks!
aeray (author)  parallaxview5 years ago
I would just make the width adjustment to the slats and the 2x4 end pieces. As for working with a sleep number bed, I don't know. Look on the manufacturers website and maybe make a few calls. If it does need to be a more solid surface, just increase the number of slats, because covering it with plywood or osb would result in a huge amount of waste, I think, because sheet goods come in 4'x8' sheets (and you would have a seam somewhere on the bed.
Thanks for your advice. FYI I did as you said and looked on manufacturer's websites. One manufacturer sells a slatted base that you put something over it. I don't know what it is, but it looks like cardboard or something similar. I'm sure it doesn't have to be anything substantial, just something to help distribute the weight a little more over the slats. In case you're interested here's a air mattress foundation link to one website. I think I'll call and ask if the folded covering is cardboard.
aeray (author)  parallaxview5 years ago
I finally looked at that site, and it seems to me that cardboard would work just fine, especially if you could align the corrugations of the cardboard perpendicularly to the bed slats.
MasterJames5 years ago
I love it!!! $30 per bed frame...that's not smart, that's genius!!! makes me jealous that I didn't think of it. Dude, I wish you the best. I rate this 5 stars out of 5 stars! 8D
That would be a 12-pack of CANADIAN beer, eh? Robertson and blued pine... Very nice and straightforward, no pun intended, and way cheaper than what I built with 4X4 and pegs! I'll be looking for more from you..
aeray (author)  SoakedinVancouver5 years ago
O, Canada! Your lumber is cheap and your beer expensive!
JanxAngel5 years ago
I know that you said bolts were not needed to attach the legs to the frame, however, I tend to move around a bit and would like to know your recommendations on how to make the legs detachable for easy moving, while not compromising sturdiness. I really like this Instructable as I've been wanting a platform bed to get my futon off the floor and reclaim the space underneath it. Even living in an apartment with limited tools I should be able to pull this off. Thanks for the note on Phillips heads too. I'll look into the other type of screws.
aeray (author)  JanxAngel5 years ago
The legs are detachable. Just number or letter the frame and the legs (so that you can put them back on in the same location) and remove the screws. Easy. If you are concerned about damage to the wood from repeatedly screwing and unscrewing, use truss-head or cabinet installation screws.
jemma69095 years ago
This looks awesome! I like a high bed. I am in need though to make my younger son a king single base have you already done measurements for this size? Thanks Heaps Leanne
aeray (author)  jemma69095 years ago
"King single base"?
matriarchy5 years ago
Has anyone works out measurements and reinforcement for a king-sized version? I know that the sturdiness of the thing has been emphasized several times, but my partner and I weight over 600 pounds together.
Mario20075 years ago
I totally agree with you on the square drive screws . I have built furniture professionally and prefer them as well . I just hate when the square bits round off , but a quick grind and they are good as new !
rf5 years ago
Okay, how can I resize this to king and beef it up to carry a waterbed? :-)
browse5 years ago
Nice project! Thanks for sharing! I'm a bigger guy, and the body weight of me and a friend in the bed could put a lot of torque n those legs. I might have attached the legs to the frame with carriage bolts, instead.
aeray (author)  browse5 years ago
As I wrote before, I weigh 240lbs, and my girlfriend is not petite. We have had no problems. One of the goals of this Instructable is to avoid the unnecessary overbuilding that I frequently see on this site, and that I see every day working in the residential construction industry. Many of the building methods we (in the US) today are horribly wasteful despite the advances that have been made in materials science and structural engineering, because most people in the residential building industry, from architects and engineers to carpenters, are mired in tradition, doing things a certain way "because that is how it has always been done", rather than consulting the best available science, or even questioning their own assumptions about "the right way to do it". Anyway, back to the specific issue. While carriage bolts may improve the "interface" connection of the legs to the frame of the bed, the shear strength of bolts is overkill. The use of carriage bolts in thin soft pine or fir may split the lumber, and will definitely eventually result in deformation of the hole and looseness of the legs. Through bolts with washers would be more appropriate if more strength was necessary. But it isn't, as the limiting factor in this connection is not the strength of the fastener, but the strength of the wood itself. Attached as I spec'd above, with four #10 screws, the wood of the legs will fail and split out long before the screws break. Using carriage or through bolts will not change this. Sorry for the windy answer, but this kind of thing (obviously) is one of my pet peeves. Thanks for reading it.
teeps aeray5 years ago
Hello aeray, love your instructable and I found it at the perfect time! Just about to go and buy the supplies to build another one of these

but I think I will give you design a shot instead. I made one of these beds for my girlfriend and The use of carriage bolts in thin soft pine or fir may split the lumber, and will definitely eventually result in deformation of the hole and looseness of the legs is exactly what happened. That pine is softer than I anticipated! Do you have any suggestions for keeping the legs on that design from pulling away from the frame like it has been and requiring over tightening every few weeks? I was thinking about putting some strips of rubber in between the wood but I would appreciate your input.
aeray (author)  teeps5 years ago
Thanks. To fix the problem, I would replace the small washers on the bed with fender washers on both ends of the bolt AND lock washers on the nut end. If that isn't enough, run a few 3" screws in it.
shmacky265 years ago
Good instructable, the best engineering is simple and that's what you kept it at. I think I may build a king size like this and save some cash. Also, are you 100% sure of the sturdiness. I only ask because I tend to hit it like a cave man.
aeray (author)  shmacky265 years ago
Quite sure of the sturdiness of this queen-sized bed. For a king, though, I would upgrade the slats to #2 and better grade lumber, and be careful to get ones that were knot-free. I might also put a 1x4 on edge under the slats at the centerline of the bed. I think that a 2x4 would make a hard spot in the bed.
My 2 cents for a little more money and a lot less sawing find an appropriately sized wooden prefab fence panel and add legs. One thing on the prefab fence panel is check the fasteners, Nails if not an ardox might wiggle their way out over time.
aeray (author)  instructablesmeg5 years ago
Finding an appropriately sized panel may be an issue though... 4'-6" x 6'-8" doesn't conform to the (US) standard 2' module.
aeray (author)  aeray5 years ago
Oh, if the cutting is a problem, give the guys at your local lumberyard the cut list and they will cut the pieces for you for about $0.50 US per cut.
carlos66ba5 years ago
You say: "EVER using Phillips head screws. The Phillips head was designed to "cam out" at a fairly low torque for assembly line work before the advent of adjustable torque limiting drill/drivers. I use only Robertson square drive or Torx head screws, and save myself a lot of time and frustration." I COMPLETELY AGREE... Phillips screws are really awful. When I discovered torx screws, it changed my life!
aeray (author)  carlos66ba5 years ago
You should also check out Timberlock screws (generically called "olys" or "ollies"). They come in lengths from 4" to 20" and have 5/16" hex heads. No predrilling required, and they are self-countersinking.