Picture of Nail-less, glue-less almost screw-less fire finished bed

DO YOU MOVE A LOT FROM ONE HOUSE TO ANOTHER? you need nomad furniture and this bed is really good to move it around, just take it apart and put it together like a puzzle, No Nails, no screws. It is also really simple to make and looks very good.

Step 1: How to begin.... What you need

You need basic tools for carpentry and wood working, manual or powertools. This bed can be made using only a saw, a screw driver and a steady hand for straight cutting, you also need 3/4" or 1" x 6" x 10' boards and a pole 6" diameter. (How many boards you need or how long the pole, depends on how tall you want your bed to be. (standard height of a bed is about 2 feet) and the size of your mattress so you will have to do those calculations yourself..).
1" board will make a stronger more sturdy bed so I recomend those. You will also need about 20 screws, and 3 or 4 hours of your time.
To make the fire finish you will also need a plumber's torch or any other gas torch but of course this is optional.


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PraetorianXX5 months ago

I used a hand saw for some of the cuts, then I got tired and borrowed a reciprocating saw from a friend like this one: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Black-Decker-KS890ECN-Scor...

I used a large chisel to remove the wood between the cuts and then sanded.

I moved home about 2 years ago which was made a little easier because the bed can be dismantled very easily. Last year I decided to change the legs to a different design that takes up a little less space in my new house. A neighbour was having a loft extension and had some leftover wood that was strong enough to use as bed legs. The legs are bolted to the bed sides using 150mm and 180mm coach bolts and I added some extra pieces of wood as cladding, just to make it look a little tidier

My version of Tazo's design with the round legs lasted for more than five years. The bed now has different legs but is still very strong, doesn't creak, and has never needed any maintenance. We now have two young children who bounce and climb all over this bed and it stands up to everything we throw at it.

Hi Tazo,

I used your guide, but with a few minor alterations, to make a king sized version of your bed. I used larger boards for the sides and also used three 4cm x 4cm beams to support the planks - gotta be strong enough to hold two people. The mattress I have is a Tempur one that measures 1.5 metres, by 2 metres. I've got a little more work to do on it like trim the ends of the main boards so they are flush agains the legs, then apply some sort of finish (my gf probably won't like the pyro idea though).

Thanks for the guide, I had a lot of fun building my own bed =)

Hey, not sure if people still come back to this thread 5 years later, but anyway what did you use to cut the cross joints on the legs? Im an using 8x8 square oak ones with at least 6" depth of cut, so a jigsaw is not going to work. And i dont know how straight it would be to cut one by hand. Any suggestions?

I find this post 2 months ago. I cuut all of my board but i still didn't cut the cross on the legs cause i don't know how to do it...

If you found a find a good way to do it, please tell me :)

Tazo (author)  krapo405 months ago

Use a handsaw or a band saw.

Tazo (author)  nordlich145 months ago

I meant to say bandsaw, I ended up using a Handsaw. I have edited the instructable to avoid confusing people. Thanks for the comment.

Tazo (author)  PraetorianXX6 years ago
That's a great photo. This is the purpose of instructables I´m glad you had fun
OmarN25 months ago

You'd have to be pretty accurate to use a jigsaw to cut the posts, and have the world's straightest cutting jigsaw. I think you can pull it off with a bandsaw.

Tazo (author)  OmarN25 months ago

A bandsaw is the correct way to do it, I have edited the instructable to avoid confusion. Thanks for the comment.

Tazo (author)  OmarN25 months ago

A bandsaw is the correct way to do it, I have edited the instructable to avoid confusion. Thanks for the comment.

any ideas for a headboard and footboard to match....i need a king size i'm thinking maybe another set of post for the middle? obviously with only one cross cut...and does using the torch help seal in all the toxins that are associated with those kinds of post? yeah i know there are "sealers" but adding one toxin to cover another seems...well kinna silly,
Tazo (author)  plzspoilme25 6 years ago
I do not know about the toxins on treated wood so i really do not know how to answer your question but someone out there may have better info??

Formaldehyde is the usual chemical used in treated lumber, and it will gas out into a room if used indoors. That is why it is only ever used outdoors, those posts you used are for supporting decks mostly.

You do NOT want to use treated lumber for this. It shouldn't be used inside in any case. It's strictly for outside use.
ismilelots2 years ago
This is awesome!!! I was going to buy a bed base but now I want to make one! Thank you so much.
How did you notch out the corners? Also, how did you remove the wood from the cuts?
doctoral3 years ago
I love working with wood so easy to correct your mistakes
skimmo4 years ago
its just like a big mortise and tenon, but your using a who plank in stead cutting a shoulder, that is a very good idea, is it rock solid?
Tazo (author)  skimmo3 years ago
I've been using it for more than a year now and it is still rock solid.I actually had some problems when moving since it was harder to disassemble than I thought probably moisture swelled the wood and made it even tighter.
skimmo Tazo3 years ago
yeah i had that problem before with a puzzle i once made it swelled and locked together, i think if you sealed it really well it would move that much on you
Hi Tazo, great design!

I'm in the middle of making it, and do have one major thing to note for anyone else making one.
Do not use un-reinforced cedar for the main planks, and do not use a corner post that is too small.
I'll explain.

When you cut the planks off right after the main joints to make them sit flush, you're left with an approx. 1" piece of wood sticking up, with nothing to prevent it from easily breaking off. This leaves a weak piece, and potentially a very weak joint. Allowing the board to protrude from the post, or using a thicker post, allows more wood to remain to reinforce that piece. The reason I advised against cedar is because it splits too easily... I've already had three of these pieces break off!!

If the fix described above doesn't work too well (i.e. you either have space limitations, or you've already cut them, both of which describe me) I've got another one. Buy some small metal sheets, less than the thickness and width of the board, and screw/glue them on the ends. If they're made of brass or another nice-looking material, they will still look nice and hold up. For further reinforcement, you can drill holes in the posts and reinforce with bolts that can be removed to take the bed apart.

Unfortunately, this might ruin the aesthetic of the bed; just shop around to get something that can fit your tastes. It's either find something that works, or start again from scratch!!
mr.frob5 years ago
I actually had an idea very similar to this a while back because I hate disassembling/reassembling beds. Great instructable!
backpocket5 years ago
does the fire finish leave any marks on the sheets or mattress or should i use a clean lacker over it after doing the fireing. i also wonder where you got your wood mainly the posts? and do you think it would be a good idea to make somehow a metal bracket on the posts im afraid over time it would split. take a log for example put a wedge in it and it splits with no effort. but over time with boards in it slightly larger than the hole they are always emitting a large force down on the posts also out. i love your design i plan on building myself a twin one but want to make sure it would last long term with me and my girl.
Tazo (author)  backpocket5 years ago
The finish is only on the outside so it doesn't come into contact with the mattres but even if it did i have had no problems with stains. For the posts i bought them at the Home Depot and a hve been using this bed for over a year now and it is as strong as the very first day. Good luck and pleasr do post some pictures of your finished bed to see them.
babbs1st5 years ago
great bed hey if you did want it totally screwless you could use thicker sides and rout out the part the slats sit on maybe
Lokisgodhi5 years ago
Great instructable. You could burn the wood a lot more than you did.

Here's a traditional Japanese finish called Shou-sugi-ban. It entails charring a type of cedar, washing and then applying an oil finish.




rekcuftihs5 years ago
Very cool. How solid is it? I'm looking for plans for a cheap platform bed that doesn't make any noise at all when I roll around.
Tazo (author)  rekcuftihs5 years ago
Well, it's been 9 months since i built it and quite a bit of... rolling around has happend and you must know that not a single squeaky noise has been heard so far.... just keep the joints tight and that should do the trick. have fun making your own bed.
krh26 years ago
Thanks for this tutorial!! I almost made it a screwed design, but managed none the less. I couldn't find the posts so I used 4x6 for the legs. I didn't have a band saw for the cross cuts, but used a circular saw for most of the cutting and then finished with a chisel. If i ever build another of these, I'll buy a band saw... Didn't do the fire finish, but used redwood and stained it with a clear stain! Looks really nice!! My kids love it, they started referring to it as "Their bed". Do you have any ideas for a couch, because i may need somewhere to sleep. Again, thanks for the great design and tutorial!!
Tazo (author)  krh26 years ago
It would be great to see a picture of it. I am actually working on a dinner table and chairs right now so if after that comes the couch you will know. thank you I appreciate your comments
cavedueller6 years ago
This is a great tutorial. I've been planning on building a bed frame for a while, and had come up with a much more complicated plan. I think I like yours better! The fire finishing is a very cool and unique touch. I once lived in an apartment that had accidentally "fire-finished" floors -- another tenant had started a fire and the pine floor had burn marks all over it. I actually loved the look; I should've fire-finished the furniture I built to match!
bontoft6 years ago
well thanks man, I need a new bed and this is brilliant. It actually reminds me a lot of a bed that a guy I know made, I wanted to buy it off him but he wouldn't accept. But now I can make my own. Thankyou. PS i will try my best not to make it screwless :P
This looks great! About how much did the materials cost? Did you buy everything or was some of it re-use? As you said, you played kind of fast and loose with documenting your measurements and materials list, but what size mattress did you use? One might have to purchase longer board lengths with a king size. And some money (and/or cuts) could be saved buying shorter boards for smaller bed sizes.
Tazo (author)  creep_firebombing6 years ago
Hi there, Mattres size is 1.37 wide, (between a queen and a individual mattress). I bought some materials at home depot and some others in a local wood shop. the total cost of the bed was around 100 USD (mattress not included) Probably not the cheapest bed you can make but I really liked the result.
Tazo (author)  Tazo6 years ago
Sorry 1.37 meters. The price includes cuts and few hand tools I bought, the cost of the materials only I don't really remember
Awesome. Thank you. I'll be redecorating the bedroom soon and this will probably be the bed design I use. Great idea!
mitzrecords6 years ago
hi! great project. what kind of wood did you use? im looking for something cheap so maybe pine?
jrdriller6 years ago
Been in love with this bed since i first saw it. Any update on the wobbling issue? I plan to get alot of "use" out of whatever i build and was really hoping this would be it.
Tazo (author)  jrdriller6 years ago
Well, it has been 3 months now, it has been used...... and so far no wobbling at all, but a headboard could be a nice idea since the matress is about 4 to 5 inches from the wall after ... movement. partly because of the desing and partly because of the mattress itself. but any way the bed has proven to be as strudy as it gets.
erosser6 years ago
An absolutely beautiful design! I love nomadic furniture. The minute I need a bed frame-o-my-own, I will think of this. Well-done!
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