Introduction: Updated: Hang Your Bed From the Heavens! All for Around $100

Picture of Updated: Hang Your Bed From the Heavens! All for Around $100

    In this instructable (My first) I will show you the basic, easy process of hanging your own bed from your ceiling. This is a great way to get that extra POW factor to your room. The reason I finally did this project is my bed spring wouldn't cut the last corner downstairs into my bedroom.

     When I was making it I wasn't sure if people would go for it or think I was a freak, but it turned out to be great. The weight limit is 600 pounds if done properly, so you have about 500 people pounds after the mattress and wood weight. This is enough for almost any couple to safely sleep and with proper safety should never fail sans advanced warning.

     This bed is also adjustable. I can make X's with the cable to raise it around 5.5 feet above the floor. Also, making the wire loops "longer" lowers the bed. Please buy plenty of cable so you too can adjust your bed to the right height. I am just short of 6 feet and I can crawl up just fine, but most need a stool or chair, keep this in mind along with the added risk of having a bed 4 feet off the ground.

     There are a few requirements for your dwelling you need to make this happen. I would hate for you to start chopping up your place to find no trusses to hang from. Before you begin you should know you will probably only be able to do this is you live in a house (duplex, town home ect) and NOT an apartment. From my experience of building homes and living in apartments those of you will be out of luck :-(

I recently finished this instructable as it was only half completed for a long time; reason I believe for low rating (IMO)

If you like this please rate 5 stars*****

Step 1: First Step Is Gathering Supplies

Picture of First Step Is Gathering Supplies

     The hardest thing I had to do what make the (economical and safety) choices to ensure the best way to DIY. The trip to Home Depot should only take one try. I bought everything I needed from there and spent about $90.00 

8"                 Wall or ceiling hooks  (x 16)

3/32"           Coated wire                  (x 60 Feet)

3/32"           Wire Clamps                 (x 16)(-Come in 3 Packs)

2" x 4"         Board                             (x 4)(-84" Boards)

84" x 60"    Plywood Sheet             (x 1)

Drill of Choice

     I wanted this project to be safe as well as fun. It puts me to sleep faster than Ambien and Scotch. It should be noted this bed moves with your natural body movement. Until I slept in this bed it wasn't something that was clear to me. When suspended you are able to moves forward backward and side to side without much resistance, and this is what can makes some folks feel motion sickness. To my understanding it is just a false sense of security many beds provide that this one does not. It moves exactly reflective of your own movement.

     When I said this project was rated to 600 pounds that is the amount the weakest link can safely ensure. The weight rating on the Hooks is 75 lbs. per on a vertical load. (That drops to 35 for  a horizontal load) This means that with 8 hooks the vertical safe load is 600 lbs. The cable is doubled over and rated at 320 pounds, so each loop is viable at 640 lbs. The clamps have a rating of 200 lbs. and since we are using 2 clamps per loop of cable this is overall a very safe setup.

Hook Load     (8 X 75LBS = 600lbs)

Cable Load    (640 X 8 = 5120 lbs)

Clamp Load   (200 X 16 = 3200 lbs

Step 2: Assembling the Frame.

Picture of Assembling the Frame.

 The next few steps could be in any order, this is just the order I choose. 

In this step we need 3 of the supplies; The Drill, the Plywood Sheet, and the 2x4's

1)  Place the 2 x 4's evenly along the length of the plywood sheet. They should be roughly 1/4 of the length apart. They do need to be spaced evenly to disperse the weight, balance, and load. The easiest way is to place the starter board at the beginning and the end board at the other end. Then divide the distance for the remaining two 2x4's.

2)  Screw 4 screws into each board using (4) 2" wood screw.

3)  Do this for each board so you have 4 evenly spaced boards. This ensures the best weight distribution.

4)  Clip off any screw heads on the opposite side of the board to prevent scratches on walls, floors, ect.

I know the frame looks pretty weak, but I am broke and in college. I  would love to have made this from exotic wood with polished stainless hooks, and plywood & deck screw will have to work. 

Step 3: Getting Hooked

Picture of Getting Hooked

This is the most important part of the project. If you get this wrong, or install this bed into a ceiling that is not load bearing, you could seriously injure yourself. Please understand you just might not be able to install this bed. If you are, test each hook individually for hanging the bed.

Use a stud finder to locate the trusses. 

I would suggest finding any trusses in an unfinished part of the house (attic or furnace room) where you can actually see and measure the trusses without having to cut sheetrock from the ceiling first. As I learned, and as you can see by the photo, I figured they would extend across the basement from the unfinished room to bed placement. My drill holes tell a different story and that's when i realized they were not the same boards. 

Measure your drill holes in conjunction where the 8 2x4's terminate. You don't want the bed to pull on the hook except for downward. This could possible work a hook loose after time?

Using your stud finder locate the sides of each truss, as to measure your hole in the middle.

I went ahead and cut all the sheetrock so I could visually see the hole in the wood as a whole. You might run the risk of drilling off mark in the middle of the wood if you don't verify hole placement. Especially with a cheap stud finer. 

I drilled out most of the size of the hooks screw. The truss wood is very strong, but without pre-drilling I was certain the truss would crack. The threads are what hold the weight. As will most drill holes, slightly smaller than the screw.

Repeat process 15 times for all your contact points. 

To install the hook into the 2x4's the process is the same. 

I did use a smaller bit for the 2x4's because the wood is much softer than the truss word, and has more give.

You want the hooks as tight as possible for maximum tension.

Step 4: String It Up, and Let the Sway Begin!

Picture of String It Up, and Let the Sway Begin!

This is the step that is the biggest safety issue for the bed. These wires and clamps must be done right!

Depending on how high you want your bed will determine the length of wire you will need to cut for each hook set.

Mine were 5 feet apart, so each cable needed to be 126 inches long. We're looping the cables and need a few extra inches for the clamps. 

Cut the wire to desired length

Loop cable with few extra inches for double cable clamp crimp. 

Make 8 total, and tighten them just enough to bear 20 pounds or so. The friction of the plastic on the cable was enough to keep it snug without being too tight.  You will waste much time if you over tighten and lock too quickly. This is the only part of the bed that is adjustable, so you must complete this step later on after hanging the bed. 

Hang all 8 loops over installed ceiling hooks. 

Hang bed hooks into cable loops. Presto!

Now you can begin the process of making your bed level. This is done by pulling more or less cable through the clamp to adjust that loop length with the others. Once you have made your bed level, tighten down on the clamp bolts, and then add the safety washer. 

Step 5: Get Down

Picture of Get Down

Now that you have the coolest bed in the city, (Unless you have the bed that floats on magnets) you will have no problem finding dates for Valentines day, or opposition to watching a movie on your laptop and cuddle. 

You could attach a projector to the bed and use the ceiling as the screen! That was my next plan, but the smaller projectors were just coming out and I thought they were overpriced. 
Imagine going from a livingroom like this, to a regular bed...

But now you have your heavenly bed!


realife11 (author)2013-03-08

This would come in handy when the Zombie Apocalypse comes. They won't be able to get to you ;-)

Saw one of these on an HGTV show, only it was low to the ground, so if it ever broke, you would only fall 1-2 ft. Also tried one of these in a small geodesic dome cabin. It was suspended in the middle of the room, was round and maybe 2 ft. off the ground. The most comfortable bed I ever tried!

YouNeverKnowItUntil (author)2016-12-09

Will it support sex

Yamsir Hernández (author)2016-06-20

Useless :c

Victor805 (author)2016-02-18

I would totally build this if I lived in Australia.

Smarti1957 (author)2015-02-20

I like this idea but not so much the large hooks on the frame supporting the bed. I would use large eye hooks to avoid the gouging of body parts and such. And those 2x4s sticking out like that? How does one make the bed, etc... without running into those? I love this idea, but I would have to change the platform and maybe even eliminate the hooks altogether. Run the cables through holes and under the platform and only at the top and foot of the bed..

kuma.rhyu (author)2015-01-25

Very cool idea!

mdrmoose (author)2012-07-17

A very nice idea indeed, but can you screw on it? Bed would literally be swinging every which way! More likely it would break!

Command-A (author)mdrmoose2012-08-11

Never broke for me, and trust me I tested it!

tn. (author)2012-01-05

my brain just went fireworks!

we bought a house and took possession on nov 1st. we have very little furniture (largely thanks to a house fire) and the set we bought for our daughter, while an excellent value (highboy dresser, long dresser, mirror, student desk, and hutch, all for $250) did not come with the bed (didn't survive 3 girls jumping on it, apparently.

so we've been going around and around the block about her bed - we're kinda grossed out at the thought of buying a second-hand bed anyway but when we blocked out a twin, holy hannah, she'll have no floor left at all! so we thought of a loft bed but she's afraid of sleeping up there and brand new, they're pricey (if we buy to at least coordinate with the rest of the furniture).

now, we have a solution! we can put the bed low as she wants or put it right up high to free up floor space. we can use pretty chain instead of basic cable - thread it with ribbons, use s-hooks to hang stuffies, drape fabric through the ceiling hooks to create a canopy. instead of ribbons, use vines with leaves and flowers.

the best part? because the bed is so cheap to build, we can splash out on the mattress and linens!


Command-A (author)tn.2012-08-11

So glad you see an opportunity to have some fun! I had a blast, and was easy to put up and take down~!

Cesaro138 (author)2011-06-23

Not something I'd be interesting in doing, but if you could actually expand it to be a bed that raises all the way to the ceiling when not in use (a vertical murphy bed?) and when lowered it could actually sit on the ground.

Well, that just sounds awesome. If you had high ceilings you could actually build out the surrounding areas to have the bed go into a recessed area of the ceiling.

Has anyone ever seen anything like this? I'm going to be getting a new house shortly and we're having discussions about our guest room and where I will have an office. I prefer not to have air mattresses for our guests since some of them are getting older now. If I could have something out of the way in the ceiling that might be really fun and useful.

love4pds (author)Cesaro1382011-11-25

I will post one when it is done. Planning on making a bed like that to raise out of the way for a bus conversion so I have desk room without having to clean the desk everyday...UUGGG!

orvis (author)Cesaro1382011-07-16

A vertically-moving murphy bed is one of the greatest ideas I've heard of for a while. You've got me thinking very, very hard about this now.

milamber (author)2011-10-10

for those who find the sway discomforting you could minimize it by tying the beds corners to walls (strong points) with paracord or other strong cord

Mark Rehorst (author)2011-06-21

Interesting build. Having designed an unusual bed myself I applaud your ingenuity.

I build a tree "house" for my son that was suspended between two tree trunks using eye bolts screwed into the trees and heavy chains. Hanging the platform from the tree trunks allowed the trees to sway in the breeze without destroying the tree house. I used a set of light chains on the bottom to stabilize the whole thing so it couldn't sway more than about an inch in any direction. You could do something similar by running cables or chains to adjacent walls (or the floor) to limit the range of motion.

Why are you using hooks in the 2x4s at all when you could simply loop the cable under them? Cost would be reduced and maybe strain on the cables too.

I would slide the clamps up to the top near the hooks so you don't poke yourself or snag bedding on the sharp ends of the cables or the bolts.

Finally, I'd check the cable specs and use much beefier hooks to hang the bed. The safety issue isn't so much for the person on the bed as for the person or objects under it.

orvis (author)Mark Rehorst2011-07-16

That's tree-platform is quite well done! You've also mostly solved the trees-grow-and-shift-over-time issues as well with your suspension.

Command-A (author)2011-06-22

Hello all, I hae read your comments, and I do agree. Some things on this bed can certainly be made safer. I literally just threw this together with one trip to Home depot. This model is more for highlighting the design than anything else. Please feel free to copy and take whateer parts you like, and please be safe. I now live in a different place, on without the bed, and don't have adjusted pictures to put up.

Thanks for all your support for my first instructable!

TheGeekFather (author)Command-A2011-07-08

I wouldn't want to be....Intimate on that. Would start swinging and bash holes in the wall.

cyndielou (author)2011-06-24

my mom hung my bed like this when i was a teenager~ an idea from a magazine i'm sure. being a welder, she made the frame from square tubing, the sheetrock not hung yet. ....she used some round rod, made hooks and welded them onto some flat steel and bolted them through the ceiling trusses. we used heavy chain to hang it i have to say it was the grandest thing being 14 or 15 years old!!. i have since seen some light weight couches hung the same way. i have never forgotten it and my do the same sometime in my future. i am now 56 :)

bits61 (author)2011-06-24

When I was a kid, my Dad made a similar bed for my brother! He used really thick rope, and tied it right around the trusses in the attic. He also tied huge knots under the thick plywood he used for the base. I think he also had one side against the wall with a 2x6 screwed to the wall to support that side. It was awesome!! Of course my brother wasn't very heavy, but he did move around a lot up there! :D

Ghalko (author)2011-06-22

I really like the idea, but you may want to heed the nicer part of the detracting comments. - Due to a miscalculation where it looked like they could get away with two lengths of threaded rod rather than one really long length that didn't fit on a truck. A nut failed and caused the whole thing to collapse even though the engineers thought that it was at the 4x standard. Just from people standing on it.

I know this is for your own fun. Just make sure you are all the way on your bed, so you have a nice soft landing, rather than half way on or off. I would suggest a superman entry to evenly spread the load at all times. :) But land vertical so that there isn't too much swinging and denting of walls. ;)

SpencerH (author)2011-06-21

Just a quick thought...
If you're making sexy time in your bed and your doing it at its natural frequency = resonance. The thing starts swinging like mad ;)
But then again you have the same problem with a bed with long supports...

dyly (author)SpencerH2011-06-21

lol, win

tinker234 (author)2011-06-20

wow i love this wow hey add sevros and a holde in the celling and make it come down on wires

infraredhot (author)2011-06-20

You've made a dangerous error in the way you put on the wire rope clip. The wire ends are swapped, you've saddled a dead horse. Read this for more information

studer.steven (author)2011-06-18

there are so many things wrong and completely dangerous about this bed.
you need to take a look at how you should use the aircraft cable with an Crosbys. Also those hooks are 1) not rated for a live load AND 2) NOT RATED FOR AN OVERHEAD LOAD.
where are the moderators on this!!

Another thing, often home depot only sells 7x7 wire rope which is not the same as 7x19 wire rope. 7x7 at that diameter is typically not rated for overhead lifting.

We don't need no stinking mods :P

The bed is functional and it works for him. I don't intend on drilling a line of holes through my ceiling to find the studs to hang my bed from but it's an interesting idea.

The discussions on the thread suggest that is might not be that safe, fair enough. As with all instructables, copy at your own risk. The sensible person will look at the instructable and then the comments and improve upon the design. Leave it up so we all learn.

Would more wires help? Surely enough wire would cope with any load (have its own weight which might cause problems with the ceiling but...)

Also if the wire at the top was cut and double over the top hook like it is around the bottom hook would would that double the load the wires can take?

entropomorphic (author)2011-06-20

There are several errors in your load calculation.

One, looping the cable over the hook doesn't count as double the strength of the cable; consider the point of failure where it bends around the hook. You have only one cable there, not two, and in fact it is kinked there. The actual strength for the loop of cable is certainly less than the cable's stated strength - I would estimate 50% (160 lbs) tops. The proper way to terminate the cable ends (and approach the 320 lb rating) is with a "thimble" eye loop and a crimped ferrule.

You also fail to take the plywood and 2x4s into consideration, although honestly you're probably okay there.

Most problematic, though is that your calculations assume the load to be evenly distributed over all eight cables. Let's say a 150 lb person climbs onto the bed by the corner. The motion of climbing increases their momentary weight to maybe 200 lbs, and I'd guess that at least 50% of the force would be directed onto that one corner, and the rest by the adjacent cables, at least until the person gets settled in the bed. So at that moment both hooks on that corner are subject to ~100 lbs of force, not even counting the weight of the mattress and frame, which easily exceeds their 75 lb rating. This is what studer.steven was referring to as a "live" load.

When one cable fails in this bed, the adjacent cables are shocked with a sudden extra load, leading to a potentially cascading failure.

This person is absolutely correct.

jeffeb3 (author)2011-06-20

Since you are looping the cable, each one is still 320 lbs. If you strung two separate cables, then it would be 640. It doesn't really matter, because the hooks are still definitely the weak spot. The other reason I wouldn't trust this bed with 600 lbs is that the weakest part of those hooks may be their attachment to the ceiling, not the hooks themselves, which you don't have specifications for.

You should know that you are adding additional stress to the ceiling (which might be ok if you aren't overloading the floor above, but definitely not ok on the top floor of your house (the attic/roof may not have been designed strong enough for that additional load).

Pretty clever solution to the "I can't get by bed springs downstairs" problem.

canida (author)2011-06-20

Eyebolts are a better choice than hooks; I'd strongly recommend subbing them out.

dtoma (author)2010-03-31

Lovely id be better if it were a water bed, what it there were a earth quake while you were sleeping and one or more of them broak.  Then what.

Command-A (author)dtoma2011-02-05

If your in an earthquake where the force is enough to break the ceiling trusses holding you up, the bed is the least of your worries! I don't believe an earthquake would rock the bed any more than a pillow fight, but again, this bed isn't for everyone!

studer.steven (author)Command-A2011-06-18

um you will bounce out of the hooks in an earthquake, or just some fun in bed can do that.

theexpert (author)2011-01-12

you need 16 8 on top 8 on the bed

Command-A (author)theexpert2011-02-05

Thanks, I missed that one!

Skai (author)2010-07-17

This is really cool, really pushing the concepts of construction. Well done, too, it looks great. I'm really interested in loft beds that are able to have something underneath, so I'm thinking that if I were to make this than I would want to add on a ladder of some sort, maybe one that retracts into the bed and back out with a push of a button or something. Thing is, I'm really just in the market, as far as I know financially, for apartments. If only I could find a cheap duplex!!!!!!!! or get a really cool land lord that I could convince that I'd repair the ceiling where the trusses were! Any thoughts on this? I think this is pretty much the ultimate in bed design. Really, well done :)

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