So I decided to build a Thomas Train bed for my son, who, like many boys his age, loooooves Thomas the train. Got my design inspiration from another train bed design on instructables.com, hopefully a lot simpler to make.
Step 1: Sketchup
First I drew up the bed in Google Sketchup. This bed was designed for a standard twin size mattress 39" x 75".
You can download the sketchup file here
. You need the Google Sketchup program (free version is enough) to open it.
Step 2: Cutlist diagram
I used one 4x8 sheet of 3/4" plywood for the bed body, one 4x4 sheet of 3/4" plywood for the foot board/toy chest and some scrap I have for various parts. If you start from scratch, 2 sheets of 3/4" plywood should be more than enough. Alternatively, you could use 1.5 sheet of plywood and half sheet of MDF for the curves.
Step 3: Making the engine head
I made the engine head with 2 half circle and a 1/8" hardboard bent around them.
Step 4: Making the rooftop
Cutting the arcs was a pain, mainly because the plywood is hard to deal with and I don't have a scroll saw to keep the cut perpendicular to the surface. In the end I had to use my router with a straight bit to cut the curves. Again, if I were to do it again, I'd use MDF.
I also used the router to cut a 1/4" groove along the inside of the arcs and the side rail so that the roof board can fit in.
Step 5: Bed body
The bed body was straight forward to make. The two sides are identical pieces cut from one sheet of plywood (kind of like a "69" pattern). It saves wood and avoids the need to join multiple pieces together. For the decorative red sidings around the window, I used 1x4 pre-primed MDF boards.
Do not throw away the 2 cut-off pieces from the window - they are used as the 2 shoulders for the toy chest.