Introduction: How to Make a SOFA That Turns Into a BED

This attractive sofa bed is ideal for everyday use and convenient for any time you have an overnight guest. The exposed Southern Yellow Pine arms provides a charming rustic feel and a sturdy frame. One of the many great features of this multifunction piece is that it can accommodate either a twin-size or full-size mattress. Another desirable element is the integrated shelf on the arm of the sofa, which can act as a nightstand.

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Materials List are in the next step >>>>>

Step 1: What You Need/Cutting Lumber

Materials Used

- Detailed Plans:
- (6) 2 x 12 Southern yellow pine
- (5) 2 x 3 lumber
- (6) 1 x 4 lumber
- 1/2-inch dowels
- lots Screws
- Wood Glue

- Danish oil

Cushions solutions:
Futon mattress:

Air Mattress:
Full-size mattress :
Twin mattress:

Tools Used:

Let's Get Started

I began by using a miter saw to cut the lumber to the desired lengths. These cuts can also be achieved using a circular saw.

Step 2: Making the Back and the Side Panel

For the back of the sofa, I laminated two pieces of lumber. If you have a jointer or planer, you can run these pieces through to clean them up. After stacking the lumber, I marked both pieces at the same time to indicate where to drill the dowel holes. I drilled the holes on both pieces of the lumber and did a dry fit to ensure that the holes are deep enough and that the dowels will line up well. Then, I added glue to the dowels and set them in the holes I made, followed by adding glue to where the lumber would be joined. Use a rubber mallet to fit the pieces together and clamps to hold the pieces together while they dry. To make the arm, I used the same process used to make the back of the sofa.

Step 3: Building the Arm With Storage

Set up the wood as shown. I marked on both pieces of wood where the dowels would go and used a dowel jig to make the holes.

When drilling, I recommend clamping your dowel jig down to ensure that your holes line up. For the middle-shelf section, I freehanded some dowel holes and used a dowel center to mark where the dowel would land.

Do a dry fit first. Then assemble the arm. Start with the bottom and attach the side using glue. Next, install the shelf followed by the front of the arm. Clamp the pieces together and allow the glue to dry.

Step 4: Attaching the Arms to the Back

For the first arm, I used dowels and wood glue to attach the arm to the back of the sofa. By clamping a scrap piece of wood to the back, I was able to use it as a way to apply pressure to the arm. You can use a piece of sandpaper to prevent the scrap piece of wood from sliding when tightening the clamps.

Attach the other arm using wood glue and dowels. Since I had the other side drying and I did not want to move it before it was completely dry, I only added dowels at the top. After the glue set up, I will use screws to finish securing the arm to the back. For now, clamp and let dry.

Step 5: Building the Frame for the Seat

I used two pieces of scrap wood to make a quick template. This will speed things up when setting the height of the seat.

Apply wood glue. Then secure the lumber in place creating a frame. For the front support, I secured the lumber using glue and pocket hole screws . Also, install the middle support.

Step 6: Sanding

This was rough lumber with knots, sap, and unevenness. For these reasons, I sanded the sofa four times. First I used 80-grit sandpaper, then 120-, followed by 220- and finally 400-grit.

If you haven't already, now is a good time to add more reinforcement from the back into the arm with storage, using screws. I covered the holes with wood filler, but you can plug the holes with a dowel rod.

Step 7: Apply Finish

I used Danish Oil to finish the sofa, but you can use whichever stain or finish will suit your space best.

Step 8: Installing the Slats and Front

For the slide-out feature on this sofa to work, you have to secure every slat. To make sure I left adequate spacing, I laid down two slats at a time and separated them with another piece of wood, as shown. I then was able to secure the correct slat using a nail gun. I recommend gluing and screwing the slats into place, especially if you anticipate moderate to heavy use of the sofa bed.


I attach the lumber that will be secured to the front of the panel.

Step 9: Finishing Touches

I predrilled the slats that would be attached to the front of the sofa to avoid any wood splitting. Like I said before, I recommend gluing and screwing the slats if you will be using the pull out feature frequently.

I advise rounding the edges of the slats with a router, sander or even a rasp.

Although I don't find it to be an issue, there have been many suggestions to add a stop on the end of the slats that are attached to the front panel. which would prevent it from being pulled out all the way.

Step 10: Glamour Shots

Here are some photos of the finished product.

You can make your own custom cushions, or you can use some of the suggested ones I found on Amazon.

Cushions solutions:
Futon mattress JIIKz7

Air Mattress:
Full-size mattress: x J

Twin mattress: huH8F

If you use this bed at its full-sized potential, you can cut an extra piece of wood to cover the gap and attach it using corner brackets.

This DIY Sofa Bed is the perfect solution for a myriad of spaces: dorms, apartments, children's rooms, guest rooms, tiny house, camper etc. With its functional design, you may even choose to use this bed as a permanent sleeping arrangement.

To build this exact bed I have plans here: https://gumroad. com/diycreators Every purchase goes toward materials which help me provide future content. Thanks in advance.

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