I also wanted to build the bed out of scraps and found materials - along with some supplies I had lying around - i.e. I didn't want to have to buy anything to make it. Now, I realize that very few people are going to have most of these supplies "lying around" (what can I say? I'm a pack-rat) - but they would be readily available from most upholstery supply shops. I buy a lot of my supplies from here: http://www.rochfordsupply.com as well as from local suppliers.
Total cost, if you were to buy everything, would probably be around $100 - which is half what I've spent in the past on beds that didn't last much more than a couple of years. In addition, this bed can be easily cleaned (most can't) - and if the need should arise it can be recovered for about what a cheap dog bed would cost.
- 1000-Denier, urethane-backed Cordura - I picked up some on clearance a few years ago (hence the cammo pattern). It's waterproof, abrasive resistant, and tough - and was pretty inexpensive.
- 1/2" Dacron batting
- Scrap 2"x4" lumber for the frame
- Scrap 1/2" or 3/4" plywood for the bolsters
- Elasbelt Webbing - like very strong elastic - used as a replacement for springs in furniture
- Urethane Foam - good furniture-grade foam will last a lot longer and be more comfortable
- 1" Hook and Loop fastener - about 6 feet should do it
- Staples, Foam Adhesive, Screws
Step 1: Build the Frame
This frame is assembled entirely with screws - no glue. If you have a pocket-hole jig, this would be a great use for that as well.
The goal here was a strong, square frame that could handle the continuous tension of the webbing as well as the weight of Mac.
Be sure to drill pilot holes for your screws - Why? Because pine is notoriously easy to split. The only time I don't drill pilot holes is if I'm using a self-drilling screw like a "Spax" brand screw - which I used to install the corner braces.
As for the rest of the description, I'll let the pictures do the talking.....
Step 2: Install the Webbing
Step 3: Upholstery
Once it was all assembled, I made sure I wasn't going to have any problems getting it in or out of the kennel - and had Mac test it out ;)
Step 4: Side Cushions
I had to cut up a bunch of scrap foam to make the side cushions - a bandsaw with a narrow blade is *perfect* for this. You can also use an electric knife, or in a pinch, a hacksaw blade - but the bandsaw is the way to go if you have access to one.
I also tapered the thickness of the foam top-to-bottom by about an inch - although I'm not sure how much difference it made. The best way to do this is to glue the foam to the backing board, and then cut the taper on the bandsaw.