Introduction: Futon Bed Pull Up Bar

I suffered from a rotator cuff tear a while back ending having to have two surgeries on the same shoulder. I found doing simple things like getting out of bed difficult, so I designed and built a pull up bar and mounted it to my single futon oak bed, so I could easily get up from a lying position to a sitting position and get out of bed easily with out help and with little pain. Even after the surgery I still use the bar with both hands and arms to help me get out of bed.

Step 1: Materials & Tools Needed

List of Materials needed:

2) Metal T-Post lifters from harbor freight tools

1) Stainless steel 1" square bar from a local metal recycling company cut to 52" with burrs removed.

4) Grade 8 national fine thread 5/16" x 3 1/2" bolts with washers 8 flat washers 4 compression washers -(a set of four bolts with eight flat washer four regular washer and matching nuts )

1) Sand paper 1 sheet med. grid.

1) Emery cloth 1 small strip med grid.

2) Large sheet of newspaper or wrapping paper.

List of Tools needed:

1) Power drill- (Portable or plug in)

3) Drill bits from 1/8", 1/4", and 5/16"

1) Flat Baster-flat file

1) Hammer

1) Center punch

1) metal cutting hack saw or power grander

Step 2: Disassembly of Metal T- Post Lifter Tools

Harbor freight tools has a Metal T-post lifter tool which look like a jack and jack stand
with a metal square foot on it is to keep it on the surface of the ground so when you use the handle it lifts the metal T-post out of the ground easily.

Note: Whenever using tools that cause little bits to fly randomly Throughout your bedroom or workshop, USE EYE PROTECTION and Gloves.

Each of the two above two tools you will need to remove the arc welded on steel 4"x4"x 1/8" square base using a metal cutting hack saw or grinder to saw or grind off while holding the post squarely in a shop vice. Make sure base is removed as close as possible to the weld just above it so the pole free and clear of the weld and the base.

The handle comes with the tool but is not assembled but you will not need the handles so find some other use for them. I am using them for shelving racks for holding my scanner but this is another project for Instructable.


Once the Poles are free of the square base use a fine flat file-( called a 'flat baster"- true name to removed the burs or sharp edges then use the emery cloth to make sure there are not burrs or sharp edges.

Step 3: Assembly Plans

You need to drill the holes near the fresh cut end where you just removed the square welded bases.

Mark on each rectangular pole where you are going to make the holes for mounting it on your bed.

Use a sharpie or pencil label each pole with right or left side so you don’t get confused where it goes on the bed. Also mark the out side of each so you know how it will be mounted on the oak bed rails. Each pole will mirror the other side.

Mark the first hole will need to be ½” from the cut base and ¼” from the side of the rectangular pole which will go to head of the bed direction.

Mark the second hole will need to be staggered up again ¼” from the side of the rectangular pole closest to the foot of the bed.

Once each pole is clearly marked take each and take it over to the bed hold it against the oak wood frame to make sure it looks the same for each side with the first hole near the bottom and ¼” from edge closest to the head of the bed.

Once you are clear of what you are doing you can use a center punch and a hammer to punch each centered hole then use the 1/8” drill with the pole mounted in a vice to steady it, then after both Poles are drilled, changed the bits to ¼” re-drill each, and changed to the last 5/16” drill bit and re-drill always using the vice to steady it so the holes drilled straight thru the hollow part and thru the complete thickness of the rectangular pole. Then use the file, followed with emery cloth to remove all burs and sharp edges. Once all holes are drilled and removed of burs and sharp edges you will need to bring each to the bed and hold them in place with a clamp to make sure you use a sharpie or pencil in the already drilled holes to mark the spot on the wood frame where the holes you need to make in the oak bed frames. Once they are correctly marked use the center punch again marking the center of the holes you will need to drill.

Drilling the wood oak frame starting again with the 1/8” drill bit again then the ¼” drill bit and lastly the 5/16” drill bit to drill all four holes two on each side of the bed frame. Then use the two grade 8 bolts with washers to mount each pole to the futon oak wood bed frame. Remember the flat washer will go on each side of the wood frame and the

Opposite side of the rectangular pole then the lock washer with nut. Do not tighten completely until you have the square bar in place on top. Once the bar is in place you can tighten each bolt starting with each lower bold and nut then moving to the higher bold and nut just tighten so the pole does not move.

Then you are ready to mark the holes for mounting the square bar to the top
of rectangular poles, you will Find the holes are already in place because the T-pole lifter handles of the tool are already made. Just need mark with sharpie or pencil then removed the bar and bring it to the vice for center punching & drilling once again use the smallest bit first graduating to the larger then the largest bid. Again use the flat file & emery cloth to remove all burs and sharp edges then return it to the bed and mount the Bar using the pin and hair pin clip already supplied in the Harbor tool kit that was for the handle.

The small hand towels are used for gripping instead of gripping the bar it is a lot easier to pull one self up using the ends of the two towels as handles.