Introduction: DIY Twin Bed
My son was in need of a new bed so I found some inspiration online and went to work designing and building this “ Big Boy bed” for him. I learned a lot in the making of this project and I think it turned out great. So great in fact, that I think this is my favorite project to date. I hope you enjoy the project. Enjoy!
- Wood Glue - https://amzn.to/2qTtTWg
- ¼ - 20x70mm flathead bolts -https://amzn.to/2LgH1PI
- ¼- 20 insert nuts -https://amzn.to/2YNpk2o
- ¼- 20 cross dowel nuts - https://amzn.to/2qTtTWg
- ¼” dowels - -- Polycrylic - https://amzn.to/2qTtTWg
Step 1: Cut the Wood
The first thing I had to do was cut all of the lumber. I will be gluing a lot of different pieces together during this project, so a general rule of thumb is to not cut to the exact size until the gluing process is finished because the boards will move slightly when gluing. So add an inch or so to each board and we will cut to final length later.
Step 2: Build Leg and Headboard Pieces
Next I could start gluing the legs and headboard pieces. Each piece is made up of 2 1x3 boards. I simply glued the two boards together using wood glue and clamps. One thing that will save you a lot of time on this step is to clean up all of the glue squeeze out while the glue is still wet using a damp cloth. If you let the glue dry then you will have a challenging time chipping and sanding the glue off of the boards. (I learned this the hard way) After gluing, clamping, and letting the boards dry, I could cut the board pieces to final length.
Step 3: Build Side Pieces
Next I made the pieces for the two sides. I did the exact same thing as I did for the legs. The only difference is that I am gluing a 1x3 to a 1x6 instead of two 1x3s. On this part, I made sure the bottom of each board was flush with one another. This left a lip on the top where the bed slats will sit later in the project. After gluing, clamping, and letting the boards dry, I could cut to final length as well.
Step 4: Assemble the Headboard & Footboard
This part was a little tricky and a little challenging. I would recommend watching the video to get clarity on what I am doing. I would also recommend doing a lot of test pieces for this.
First you will start with building the headboard. The first thing I did was mark where all of the headboard cross pieces would connect to the legs. To do this a made a drilling template out of cardboard. The top and bottom boards, I used a connecting bolt and an insert nut to hold everything together, but for the middle board boards, I just used dowels. Once everything is marked where the cross boards will be on the leg pieces, you can drill the holes for the bolts and the dowels. Having a Doweling Jig would have made this process much easier helping with alignment but it was ok without it.. Once all of the holes are drilled you can add your bolts and dowels to assemble the headboard. I used ¼-20 insert nuts and 70mm connecting bolts for this. This is hard to explain so please watch the video for clarity on what this looks like.
The footboard followed the exact same process. It just doesn’t have the amount of cross boards that the headboard has.
Step 5: Install the Sides
The next thing I did was attach the side pieces to the headboard and footboard. To do this I used cross dowel nuts and connecting bolts.
The first thing I did was measure and mark where the side pieces would connect to the headboard and footboard. You will have to drill holes in two places on the side pieces for the cross dowel nuts. First drill in the end piece of the side board and then also one inch from the end on the side where the connecting bolt will go. I added two of these at each corner where the side connects to the headboard or footboard. To understand this process a little more clearly, please refer to the video.
Step 6: Sand and Finish
After everything was assembled, you could sand the entire bed one final time. I sanded to 220 and that worked well. Then you can add finish. I applied several coats of polycrylic made by minwax. This is a great water based finish that is simple to use and dries very nice.
Step 7: Install Bed Slats
After this, I could take the bed apart in my shop and assemble it in the bedroom. Then I cut all of the slats that would go across for the mattress to lay on. I cut 10 slats out of 1x4 all the same length. I spaced them out evenly the length of the bed.
Step 8: Complete
After this I could put the mattress on the bed frame and the project was complete! Make sure to check out the video for the full how to experience and if you have any questions on the steps leave me a comment or send me a message. Detailed plans are available if you are interested in building this shelf. Thanks for reading!
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