***UPDATE, MARCH 2014: We have had this same frame for two years now; we also have a 4 year-old and a 1 year-old. We have done ZERO maintenance to the frame and it is still perfect. The kids jump on it regularly and play games, Daddy Man throws Robug all over it, and we are "happily married" (I hope we all get what that means). So, if you have any concerns about durability, stability, crappiness, etc...two years and one month later and the platform is still standing with no maintenance :).***In yesterday’s post I discussed our platform bed frame project and promised a tutorial—here it is! Let me start out saying that step-by-step instructions are not my strong suit (which is why I rarely wrote out a lesson plan when I taught) and we had to improvise a lot of what we did, so my hope is that this tutorial will help someone else to do what we did but I am making no claims that it is complete, done the "right" way, is entirely safe, meets any kind of compliance standards, blah blah blah. I'm laying out everything we did so as not to misrepresent our process. We would definitely do things differently next time (but there hopefully won't be a next time), so I’ve tried to be as accurate as possible in the hopes that someone else can use this and make an even better platform! And, yes, I am well aware that some of this is some ironic innuendo if read in the right context--have fun reading it and let yourself laugh like a teenager :)
We were able to sleep on our brand-new king-size memory foam mattress last night (much to our surprise--we were told it would take a day or two to "decompress"). Can I just say, “OMG, where has this mattress been all my life?!” I fell asleep IMMEDIATELY (it generally takes me a while—tossing and turning to get into a comfy position), I slept through the night without a single wakeup (that hasn’t happened since before I got pregnant, and The Robug will be two next month), and I woke up this morning and MY BACK DID NOT HURT! I feel great today! I highly recommend memory foam!!!
We were able to sleep on our fabulous new mattress and have such a positive response because, after doing a lot of reading and research, we have it on a platform. Finding no platform under $60.00, we decided to build one ourselves. The total came in just at $30.00, purchasing lumber, brackets, and screws from Home Depot. Here’s what we did:
8 – 2 x 4 x 8; cut down to 2 x 4 x 76” (don’t cut any of these until you read the entire tutorial). SAVE THE SCRAPS--YOU WILL NEED THEM FOR LEGS!
8 - 20" scraps from above beams, cut 2" off of one end of two boards (leaving you with 6@ 20" and 2@ 18")
2 – ½” x 4’ x 8’ Sheets of Plywood, cut to 38” x 80” (don’t cut these until you read the entire tutorial)
Screws long enough to go through all pieces (we used 3” fine thread drywall screws)
Drill bit corresponding to screw size above
1" screws to attach plywood
Hand Saw and Hand Box
Lessons We Learned While Completing This Project That You Should Know In Advance:
*We now realize that other people probably know these things, but just in case
1. A 2 x 4 does not actually measure 2 x 4—it is actually 1.5 x 3.5. This makes a difference
2. Always think out the ENTIRE thing BEFORE you begin
3. Pre-drill all holes before doing any screwing
4. Lay out all the pieces and make sure they’re going to fit together well BEFORE screwing together anything
5. Invest in a good set of clamps
We worked from the assumption (without measuring until later, of course) that our 2x4’s actually measured 2” x 4”, so we had the 2x4’s cut to 76”, then adding 2” on each end from the side 2x4’s to total 80” wide. Well, this is where we learned lesson #1. We ended up having to add a ½” spacer when we attached the side legs to make up for the narrower 2x4s to make the 80” width.
1. Lay out the 2x4's, creating a square, the top and bottom beams on the inside of the left and right beams; place the remaining four beams inside of the square, evenly spaced.
2. With a pencil, mark where all the beams should be so that you can drill pilot holes (otherwise screwing everything together will be near impossible)
3. Screw the entire frame together. In a perfect world, once together, it should measure 80" wide and 76" long (this is when we found out that it measured only measured 79" wide and had to figure out how we were to remedy that-to come in further steps)
Of course, The Robug had to oversee and show Daddy how to do everything (and looking absolutely fabulous in the process):
We decided it would be in our best interest to put two legs under the middle of the bed, so put on on each of the two middle beams, spaced evenly apart. Use the two scraps you cut down to 18" and attach them with screws, butting one end flat against the floor so it will be level(ish) (we should have probably done these last).
5. More Legs! Now, to "fix" our "error" with the size of the 2x4's (see step 2), we added a 1/2" spacer between the side legs and the frame. Using the 6 remaining scraps that measure 20", attach one to each corner on the outsides and two at the foot of the bed, spaced evenly apart. AND be sure when attaching these legs, you attach the frame TWO INCHES DOWN! This will leave a 2" "lip" at all the corners (on the side of the bed) and the foot of the bed to stop the mattress from slipping off the platform.
We completed this as a two-person job--my husband did the drilling and screwing, I held the frame level. My job was very important (no, really--you need someone to do this): you need to make sure the frame remains level when attaching your legs--you don't want to have an awesome new mattress and feel like you're riding a bull every time someone moves or like you're rolling right off the side.
And here's how it looks:
6. Brackets--for extra stability, put a bracket on the inside of every corner
7. The Platform! Lay both pieces of plywood down on top of the platform and make sure they fit (yeah, I know, duh) and everything lines up correctly
Screw the wood down all along the edges, about 14" apart
Then, we used a piece of duct tape over the seam so nothing snagged on it
TA-DA! YOU'RE DONE! YOU HAVE A KING SIZE PLATFORM BED FRAME
The final measurements are: 76x80 (interior of platform; wider at the legs) and is 18" from the floor (we wanted room for storage and, since there's no box spring, we wanted to make sure the bed was still at the same height--it's a little higher and we like it); with the mattress, it measures a total of 28" from the floor. I also used an old queen flat sheet and laid that on top of the platform to have something between the wood and the mattress.
The following pictures show how a king-size memory foam mattress is delivered, and how you unwrap it. It was pretty amazing that a huge mattress comes out of such a small box.
Linked up at: http://www.bluecricketdesign.net/2012/02/show-and-tell-21.html