Step 1: Materials
- Circular Saw (All cuts are cross-cuts, so other saw types will work
- Hammer (Disassembly and frustration venting)
- Electric Drill
- Drill bit (approx 3/32")
- Countersink Drill Bit (to match screws)
- Staple Gun
- 2x6x12 (2 qty)
- 1x4x8 (12 qty)
- 2x4x8 (1 qty)
- 2" Wood screws (1 box)
- 3/8" staples
Step 2: Getting the materials home
My bed is queen size, which is nominally 60" x 80" . Thus, with one 2x6x12 I can get a ~64" piece and an 80" piece. We will make more precise cuts at home, but at least this way I can actually GET it home. I certainly could have had them make this cut to the proper size, but I hadn't gotten the precise measurements yet. Whoops.
I suppose you could have them make almost all the cuts, but I feel bad taking advantage. Maybe there's a limit too, but I was happy to get out of there without finding more "projects" to do.
Step 3: Breaking down the old foundation
Before I got too carried away I managed to grab a tape measure and get the dimensions. 79" x 59-1/2".
A few swings of the hammer and it was a pile of refuse.
Step 4: Preparing the pieces
All of these cuts were regular, 90 degree cross-cuts. Nothing fancy here, just measure, draw a line (speed square hand here), measure, draw...then make the cuts (Circular saw). Once you get a system going this part will go surprisingly quickly, but I still wish I had a nice chop saw/radial-arm saw station.
When you're done making your cuts you should end up with this:
- 1x4x56.5" (Qty 12)
- 2x6x79" (Qty 2)
- 2x6x56.5" (Qty 2)
- 2x4x76" (Qty 1)
You'll also have a fair amount of 1x4 scrap, some of which will be put to use.
Step 5: Layout
Step 6: Adding the Lip
Note the nails. I used these to initially tack the wood in place, thinking that trying to work the drill for the screws would inevitably move the piece. So, I lined up one side of each scrap, drove a nail, lined up the other side, another nail, then maybe one in the center for good measure. Then, use screws to hold securely. The staggered pattern is to prevent splitting and avoid the pieces "rocking" if they were in the middle.
Step 7: Build the Outer Box
In dismantling the old box spring I noticed that even these lackeys took the time to round off the corners. I didn't have a router handy, but figured putting a 45 degree cut on the end would be better than nothing. Also, since I'm using 2" screws I needed to ensure that they got enough bite. So the countersinks on the sides (and for the 2x4) were fairly deep. Those screws (3 per joint) managed to get plenty of threads in to hold it secure. If I'd had longer screws laying around I would have used them, though.
Step 8: Adding the Center Support
Step 9: Adding the Mattress Slats
"bit" part to prevent splitting by the screw, and the countersink kept the head from splitting the wood as well.
The slats (9 of them) were added at 8 in centers, starting from one edge. So, the end result isn't quite symmetrical, but it's close enough. This isn't fine furniture building, it's frame work. A bit one way or the other at this point won't make a difference in the final product.
Once the slats were attached on either side (2 screws each side), I did the countersinks and screws into the middle 2x4. This thing is solid.
Step 10: Adding Additional Supports
To keep it square, I added a couple cross-braces at opposite corners. The circular saw made quick work getting the 45 degree angles cut, and plenty of screws to hold it snug. Note that the places where I screwed to the slats I used some spare 1-1/4" screws to ensure I didn't go through. The 2" screws are too long (the 1x4's are 2 thick, meaning they are only 1-1/2" total).
To keep the bottom from bowing out, I added 3 slats at the bottom. Going for speed over accuracy, they were placed 20, 40, and 60 inches from one side. Same as the mattress-side: pre-drill for 2 screws on each side, attach, then do the middle pre-drillings and fastenings.
Step 11: Upholstery
On top of the cardboard was a thin layer of foam. I don't know how much cushion it really provides, but I saw no point in leaving it out either. Again, the staple gun made quick work of this, even in its poor condition.
Finally, the outer cloth is re-attached. I was a bit impatient here and didn't get the thing centered properly. After pulling all I could to compensate, it doesn't look bad. Considering nobody will ever see it means I lose no sleep over the inaccuracy. The staple gun survived long enough to get through this as well.
Step 12: Conclusion
1. This thing was HEAVY. I probably could have used 1x6's for the outer box, especially if I had used whole pieces for the rails instead of scrap.
2. Using 2x6's would have been fine if I were making an actual BED and not a box-spring. This thing was solid enough that the only thing missing was 4 decorative feet. In my case it would have been too low, but for some they like the mattress low.
3. Had I been more cautious I could have had even less scrap left over. I didn't do too bad, but could have done with a little less
4. Get a hand when moving this thing around. I was stiff for a couple days from man-handling this beast.
Of course, only time will tell if my design holds up. I'd love to hear what people have to say in the comments. All I can say for now is that I should have done this a long time ago. A sagging box-spring makes for a crowded, uneven, and restless bed.