Build the Simple Bed

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Build the Simple Bed

A simple sturdy slatted bed is perfect for any child's room. This plan is designed so that anyone can build without special tools. If you can't locate 4x4s, try using two 2x4s glued together - but recalculate the dimensions - they will change very slightly.

HANDMADE FROM THIS PLAN >>

Projects built from this plan. Thank you for submitting brag posts, it's appreciated by all!

Pages

Shopping List: 

4 - 1x6 Boards 8' Length
4 - 1x4 Boards 8' Length
2 - 4x4 Posts 8' Length
2 - 2x4 Board 8' Length
3 - 2x2 Boards 8' Length
2 - 2x6 Boards 8' Length

120 grit sandpaper
primer
wood conditioner
paint
Tools: 
measuring tape
square
safety glasses
hearing protection
Dimensions: 
Fits standards twin mattress
Cut List: 

A) 8 - 1x6 cut at 38 1/2" (these are the headers)
B) 6 - 1x4 cut at 30 1/2" long for the headboard (these are the rails) 6 - 1x4 cut at 20 1/2" long for the footboard (these are the rails)
C) 28 - 1x6 cut at 2 1/2" long (if these boards are splitting on you - depending on your type of wood - use 28 1x3s cut at 5 1/2" long) (these are the spacers)
D) 2 - 4x4 Posts cut at 41" (Headboard Posts) 2 - 4x4 Posts cut at 31" (Footboard Posts)
E) 2 - 2x4 cut at 50 1/2" (Top of the Headboard and Footboard)

FOR THE FRAME (Where the Mattress Goes)
F) 2 - 2x2 cut at 76 1/4" (Siderail boxspring holder)
G) 2 - 2x2 cut at 35 1/2" (Siderail boxspring holder)
H) 2 - 2x6 cut at 75" (Siderail)

Step 1: 

Panels. Start by making the headboard and footboard panels. With a header board, A, alternate adding a spacer and a rail, nailing from the inside with 1 1/4" nails. The diagram shown below illustrates how to do this. Complete both the headboard and footboard. Use glue.

Step 2 Instructions: 

Now sandwich the remaining header boards as shown below, concealing the spacers. Use glue, and this time 2" nails. The diagram below illustrates these instructions.

Step 3 Instructions: 

Now let's add the posts. Predrill 1/2 way through the posts on the outside. Then use long screws (at least 4") to screw into the center panel where it is sandwiched between the header boards. Use two screws for the top header and two screws for the bottom header, for a total of 4 screws per post. Center the post on the panel. There should be a 5/8" space between the outside edge of the post and the header board on both sides.

Step 4 Instructions: 

Add the 2x4 (Board E)to the top of the headboard and footboard, as shown below. There will be a 2 1/2" overhang on either end.

Step 5 Instructions: 

Set the headboard and footboard aside. Build the below box out of the 2x2s. Notice how the shorter (G) 2x2s sit inside the longer (F) 2x2s. Use screws to screw through the outside of F into the end edge of G. Use two screws per end. Please note that the cutting list differs from the measurements shown below to accommodate a 75" long twin sized mattress, and the cutting list lengths are correct.

Step 6 Instructions: 

Add the siderails as shown below, leaving a 5/8" gap on either end. Screw through boards (F) into board (H). Doing this will hide your screw holes. Use 2 1/2" screws, screwing every foot all the way down the siderail.

Step 7 Instructions: 

Notice how the boxspring frame will attach to the headboard and footboard. Screw into the headboard, and screw at an angle into the four posts. You want to be prepared for little monkeys jumping on the bed!

Step 8 Instructions: 

Fill all holes with putty and sand and finish as desired. You can choose to assemble the bed (as in step 6) after the bed is finished and moved into the room. Just make sure you do a test fit first.

Project Type: 
Estimated Cost: 
Skill Level: 

Comments

For those of you who do not have a box spring, don't worry! Just cut 10 2x4s at 38 1/2" and set in the box spring frame. Screw down, add a few screws from the siderails, and voila - you don't need a box spring (and 2x4s are about $1 each).

Did you mean use 2x4s for the frame without a box spring, or 1x4s? I'm assuming that you are making slats like in the Pioneer bed? and 2x4 just seemed a little much. Just curious. Kellie

Hi Ana, I have been looking over this plan all day today and last pondering this plan. What type of wood would you recommend building it from? I went to Home Depot here in AZ today and found wood to be extremely expensive. Oak was over $4.50 a linear foot for 1x6 and Polar was around $3.50. I was looking at pine as well but they have different types and some of it has lots of knots in it. This is my first wood project and I am not sure exactly what to do and I am somewhat confused on wood choices. I was hoping to make this for around $40-$50 like your post indicated, but I am not what wood you used to get it at that price. I could use some insight as to what to do here. I read your posting today about woods but it still leaves me confused.
Thanks for all the help,
Toni

Hi Toni, Oak and maple can be expensive, especially for 1x6s and wider widths.

When I designed this plan it was for a request from a reader. The idea was to copy the Kendall bed from Pottery Barn Kids http://www.potterybarnkids.com/products/kendall-bed-and-trundle/popup/mo...

This bed is made of pine. And it has lots of knots. This bed was designed and priced for pine. Up here in Alaska, I can get 1x3s for $1.25, 1x2s for $.78, and 4x4s for about $6. I would be suprised if Arizona was more expensive.

You can paint this bed if you absolutely do not want any knots in your boards.

You may try a different home improvement store. The pine that I purchase is not from Home Depot or Lowes. I buy from a local mom and pop shop, for the same price, but much better boards. At HD or Lowes, everyone picks through the good stuff.

I will also be posting a plan with a solid panel for the headboard and footboard, made of hardwood plywood, in a twin sized. This will be more economical.

I hope this helps. Keep me posted if you have any further questions.

Hi Toni,

I have been thinking about your comment, and wanted to add that there is a wood in the maple family, called Rubberwood or Parawood, that gaining much poplularity in the furniture making world. It is up to 50% less than maple or other hardwoods, is ecologically friendly (the rubberwood tree produces latex, and is only harvested after latex production diminishes) and becoming more and more available.

We discussed this on the Facebook fan page in a discussion. Perhaps try calling around to see if rubberwood is available in Arizona.

Good Luck!

Ana

Thanks for the info Ana. We decided to go with pine and are in the process of building the bed right now. We spent around 75-80 on the wood..so I guess AZ is a little more expensive.

We are having so much fun and love building it. Since this is our first project we are finding out several things. One of them is to measure a little over since the table saw takes out 1/16" so we had to over measure to compensate for it. We also found it is SO much easier to drill pilot holes for the screw on the boards...and also to rough sand the boards before assembling. It was some what difficult to sand some of them when we had it all put together. I am not sure if those are things people should know and we just missed them.

Also, I wanted to let you know that there is a mistake in your wood to buy. You need (2) 2x4's not one. You have to cut two board that are 50 1/2" and there are only 96" in 8'. We also found that you have to screw in the spacers at the end of each side. We just glued them and left them over night and then this morning when we put the posts on and went to pick it up, they came out...oops.

Thanks so much for your plan. We really are having a good time working with it and cant wait to start the 2nd bed. (We have two little boys that both want one).

Is there anyway we could get the dimensions for this bed in full size. We don't want to have to go buy another mattress. By the way, LOVE the website! Can't wait to make something.

Hi Ana,

I am so inspired by your talent and your ability to just do it.I never thought I could but your directions look quite simple. I would love to make this bed for my son. The only problem is that I need a double/full bed since he falls off the twin size. I would really appreciate it.

Thank you,
Romy

Ana,

Your site is really inspiring. We're considering building a bunk bed. Your plan shows 73 1/4" for the length of the twin mattress, however standard twin mattress dimensions on the net are 75" long. Is this a mistake or can a twin actually fit in a 73 1/4" space?

Thank You.

HI - LOVE this plan. If we wanted to add slats to avoid using a box spring, would we need to use a different sized board for the side rail? Would 2x6 still work or should we use 2x8 (if that exists, I've never seen that size but never actually looked for it).

Ana, I love your blog. I'm looking for some additional insight on how to screw the boxspring frame to the headboard/footboard. You say,"Screw into the headboard, and screw at an angle into the four posts." Is all the screwing done from the inside? How long should the screw be? I don't want to end up with a squeaky bed (like my current bed is). Any tips? Have you ever used bedrail hangers or lagbolts?

Lag bolts would be the way to go. The most important thing to remember here is that the legs support all the weight, which is then carried by the side rails. So you will want to fasten the siderails to the legs, and not just the headboard and footboard (although the headboard and footboard are also fastened to the legs and are very sturdy). The easiest way is to "toenail" your screws from the siderails into the posts, which basically means start by drilling at an angle from the inside of the siderail, drilling into the leg posts.

I just want to note that another reader built this bed, sent me photos, and commented that her bed was much stronger than the Pottery Barn bed they just broke. Zero complaints about the sturdiness of this bed.

Hope this help! Ana

Ana, Mikk just finished building our second bed from this plan. We used "L" brackets to hold the 2x6 side rails to the 4x4 posts on the headboard and footboard. The bed does not move a single bit. WE love this bed plan and making it for our boys. I will send you more pictures of the 2nd bed when we have a chance.

My husband and I are so excited to get started making our own furniture! Being that we're completely new to the process, we made our first pricing run to Lowe's today and I'm not sure we know how to shop for lumber! The only pine we found was MUCH more expensive than mentioned in a previous comment. The 1x6's alone were $13 EACH, and we didn't even SEE any 4x4's where we were sent to look - Were we looking in the wrong place? The pine we saw didn't have many knots, either - was it the fancy kind? lol - needless to say we felt pretty clueless. Should we be looking for something else or is Lowe's just getting pricey?

Angela, are you in the south? We're having the SAME problem. We made some benches that called for 2x12's, those babies were $19 each. Only one choice (at Home Depot) and they were pre-sealed. I thought that was fine but turns out the seal gums up my orbital sanding paper almost immediately. It was a disaster. We ended up buying 2x6 instead and spent another $44 on those ($11 each x 4 for two benches). My hubby was a little more than ticked.

I don't think it's your shopping, I think it's just WAY more expensive down here.

All of us are reeling from price shock for lumber especially as you increase in width. I have taken to using my Kreg Jig to combine smaller width boards to make a larger one. Clamps, a flat surface and sandpaper are a necessity. Then you can rip them to your size or do as I do and just adjust your plans for a slightly wider board. On some projects I can do this and others I have to rip which, unfortunately, I do at my own risk. Then wood filler comes in handy.

Jake

We're in OK, so, yes, we're south-ish. Aw, that makes me sad! I was really looking forward to building our own, but at rates like these we might be better off financially buying our furniture cheap until we can afford to build something for quality.

Anna (et. all), I love Knockoff wood and am building this simple bed for my first project. My father-in-law and I are building it for my 2 yr. old son and are 'stuck' at step 3. In this step, it says to predrill through the 4x4 and use the 4" screws to attach to the headers. My question is should this be counter sunk half way through the 4x4 or just predrilled? The reason I ask is that if you don't counter sink the 4" screw, then it only goes in 1/2 inch into the header. Counter sinking seemed to make more sense, but I wasn't clear from the directions. Thanks in advance for your help and keep up the amazing work.
Thanks,
pauL

For some crazy reason i can not find 4x4 pine anywhere? I'm in Denver and i swear no-body carry's a 4x4 of any kind unless it's a Douglas-fir at home depot.

Anybody out there in Denver got any ideas where i might find 4x4 pine?

I ran into the same problem at Lowe's in Texas. I asked the lady why I couldn't find pine 4X4s online, and she was looking in the store and said she had a pine 4X4 but it was mislabeled as Douglas Fir. She said it was definitely pine by looking at it, though. Maybe you can double check that the actually wood is pine even if labeled differently.

Douglas Fir is a fine wood for this use. It's a little harder than pine, and a bit more prone to splitting (so pre-drill any screw holes). But it's wonderfully strong and easy to work. I used it to build the legs for my workbench, and it's also made the jaws for a very nice vise using the offcuts from the bench legs.

Hi, I am making this bed for my daughters. Beds are SO expensive in New Zealand but lumbar is too! So before I went to the timber place, I went and shopped the bed place. MDF beds for $500+! New incentive! Just need to get a nail gun!

Hi Ana. I'm confused a bit by step 7. I get that we screw into the headboard with 3" screws, but I am confused as to how to toenail also into the posts.

If I use 2 screws screwing F into G, a total of 8(?) for all 4 corners, am I going to have enough room to tonail through that joint into the bed posts?

I'm about 30% done with the bed as is, and I'm very excited as this is my first real woodworking project. My son is 2 and really has outgrown his crib, so we are VERY excited to get this bed done and have him settled.

Thanks again for the plans and encouragement that you provide. You have a fantastic site!

Ana- I've noticed that you use Google Sketchup. Any reason why you don't post the actual google sketchup files for download? Then we could just click on different parts to get dimensions and change views and everything. Just an idea that might help. Love your site!

I made two of these for my daughters. Thanks for the plans! I used bed bolts and dowels to fasten the bed rails. that way the head and foot boards would be interchangeable and can be stacked in to bunk beds. love the website

My husband and I are going to to make two simple beds that will stack into bunks that can be put together or taken apart for a friend who cant find such a thing for less than $400 (mdf junk). We want to be able to do what you described above so we can get the beds up into their 2nd floor (steep narrow staircase).

I've been wracking my brain trying to come up with a way to do this. Tips?

I like this one for its simplicity and I would like to build it. I am really struggling with the 4x4's and 2x4's though. I cannot find these in pine like the rest of the 1x boards. I only have found Doug Fir. This does not seem to be a problem if you are painting the bed. However, I'd like to stain it. I called some lumberyards and they said that 4x4 and 2x4 pine does not exist. Has anyone made this successfully and stained it? Thanks.

I really hope you're able to post the solid wood headboard plans soon! Looking forward to building one for a full sized mattress. Thanks, Ana.

Sooooo, this is my first "big" project....I'm in the process of buying all of the materials. Can you please tell me exactly what type of screws and nails I need to be buying? We're going to be making two and stacking them into bunk beds but, I'm stuck at this point. Please help me !!

I can't find 4x4's either. All I see are pressure treated lumber. They are cheap enough but I am just not sure I should use them to make a bed for my kid if it has chemicals in it and the guy at Home Depot said the boards will warp when dry. Anyone else had this problem? Ana what are your thoughts?

Menards does have 4 X 4s. We did not find them at lowes or home depot but menards had them in at least 3 types of wood that were NOT treated

The pines are a specific group of evergreens, and the woods of different evergreens are very different. Their properties are different and they have different suitability for different uses. Take a plane to some spruce and compare your results with southern yellow pine.

Douglas Fir is fine for furniture though. The Japanese use it quite a bit, and I'm very happy with the bench legs I made from it.

Hi Ana
I am interested in having my husband make this bed for our 2 year old daughter. I was wanting a day bed but havent been able to find one. Are the head and foot board the same size? They look like they are. That is what I am wanting since I cant find a day bed. Thanks!

Just wondered if you have posted the plans for

"I will also be posting a plan with a solid panel for the headboard and footboard, made of hardwood plywood, in a twin sized. This will be more economical." As you mentioned in one of your earlier comments to this post. Thanks.

I actually plan on making the Simple daybed, but would like to use a hardwood plywood to cut down the cost.

I am planning on making 2 of these beds and stacking them to make bunk beds. How do I attach them to make them safe. I have 2 boys that play rough.

I plan on making this bed this weekend for my daughter. I plan on using my nailgun for the 1.25" and 2" fasteners for the head and footboards. For the remaining screws, I'm going to use some self tapping screws to prevent wood splitting.

I like the pictures that are made in Google Sketchup. I just wished they were bigger because it's hard to see some of the text.

Thanks for making us novice woodworkers seem like professionals.

Is there any way that we can get bigger pictures for the instructions on the simple twin bed.All the pictures remain small even when they are clicked on

Hi Ana.... It would be fantastic to see some baby crib plans!

A simple one, as well as something with a bit more 'flair'. :)

------------------------
Glad my rulers have both metric and imperial scales....

Hi Pedro. I believe she chooses not to post plans for a baby crib because of liability issues. It was mentioned quite a while ago so I'm not sure where to find that comment to verify.

Menards has 4 X 4s. They actually have them in different woods (pine, oak, and something else too!) Very reasonable. We got enough material to made 2 beds (all pine) but we spend less than $100 on both beds.

Hi I am interested to build this bed.
However I am having a hard time to understand the dimension of this bed.

As an example, on the headboard, we use 7C+6B, which is 7 x 2.5" + 6x 4" = 41.5", which is greater than board A(38.5").

So how can sandwich those by A?

Also on step 3, "Then use long screws (at least 4") to screw into the center panel where it is sandwiched between the header boards." I think the center panel is not strong enough considering they are spacers?

Are those pictures available in bigger size? It is really hard to read those notes.

Thanks. Just want to make sure before I purchase the material and start working.

I am in Ontario Canada and the material is really expensive if I want to avoid using Pressure-Treated Wood(contains harmful materials):

most expensive:

4 - 1x6 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE, NOT AVAILABLE IN WESTERN CANADA. 1x6x8 7.17 4 28.68
4 - 1x4 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 1x4x8 6.95 4 27.8
2 - 4x4 Posts 8' Length CDR 4 IN. X 4 IN. X 16 FT. D4S GENERIQUE 4x4x16 52.99 1 52.99
2 - 2x4 Board 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 2x4x8 8.13 2 16.26
3 - 2x2 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 2x2x8 7.59 3 22.77
2 - 2x6 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 2x6x8 13.19 2 26.38
subtotal: 174.88
tax 22.73
total 197.61

medium:
dimension unit price quantity subtotal
4 - 1x6 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE, NOT AVAILABLE IN WESTERN CANADA. 1x6x8 7.17 4 28.68

4 - 1x4 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 1x4x8 6.95 4 27.8

2 - 4x4 Posts 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 4x4x8 20.43 2 40.86

2 - 2x4 Board 8' Length Spruce - Kiln-Dried Spruce Lumber GENERIQUE 2x4x10 3.49 2 6.98

3 - 2x2 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 2x2x8 7.59 3 22.77

2 - 2x6 Boards 8' Length Spruce - Kiln-Dried Spruce Lumber GENERIQUE 2x6x16 9.12 1 9.12
subtotal: 136.21
tax 17.71
total 153.92

Cheapest(Pressure-Treated Wood)
dimension unit price quantity subtotal
4 - 1x6 Boards 8' Length Wood - Pressure-Treated Wood SELECT NOT AVAILABLE IN WESTERN CANADA 1x6x8 3.55 4 14.2

4 - 1x4 Boards 8' Length Wood - Pressure-Treated Wood SELECT 1x4x8 2.95 4 11.8

2 - 4x4 Posts 8' Length Wood - Pressure-Treated Wood SELECT 4x4x6 8.99 2 17.98

2 - 2x4 Board 8' Length Spruce - Kiln-Dried Spruce Lumber GENERIQUE 2x4x10 3.49 2 6.98

3 - 2x2 Boards 8' Length Spruce - Kiln-Dried Spruce Lumber GENERIQUE 2x2x8 2.13 3 6.39

2 - 2x6 Boards 8' Length Spruce - Kiln-Dried Spruce Lumber GENERIQUE 2x6x16 9.12 1 9.12
subtotal: 66.47
tax 8.64
total 75.11

I am in Ontario Canada and the material is really expensive if I want to avoid using Pressure-Treated Wood(contains harmful materials):

most expensive:

4 - 1x6 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE, NOT AVAILABLE IN WESTERN CANADA. 1x6x8 7.17 4 28.68
4 - 1x4 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 1x4x8 6.95 4 27.8
2 - 4x4 Posts 8' Length CDR 4 IN. X 4 IN. X 16 FT. D4S GENERIQUE 4x4x16 52.99 1 52.99
2 - 2x4 Board 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 2x4x8 8.13 2 16.26
3 - 2x2 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 2x2x8 7.59 3 22.77
2 - 2x6 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 2x6x8 13.19 2 26.38
subtotal: 174.88
tax 22.73
total 197.61

medium:
dimension unit price quantity subtotal
4 - 1x6 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE, NOT AVAILABLE IN WESTERN CANADA. 1x6x8 7.17 4 28.68

4 - 1x4 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 1x4x8 6.95 4 27.8

2 - 4x4 Posts 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 4x4x8 20.43 2 40.86

2 - 2x4 Board 8' Length Spruce - Kiln-Dried Spruce Lumber GENERIQUE 2x4x10 3.49 2 6.98

3 - 2x2 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 2x2x8 7.59 3 22.77

2 - 2x6 Boards 8' Length Spruce - Kiln-Dried Spruce Lumber GENERIQUE 2x6x16 9.12 1 9.12
subtotal: 136.21
tax 17.71
total 153.92

Cheapest(Pressure-Treated Wood)
dimension unit price quantity subtotal
4 - 1x6 Boards 8' Length Wood - Pressure-Treated Wood SELECT NOT AVAILABLE IN WESTERN CANADA 1x6x8 3.55 4 14.2

4 - 1x4 Boards 8' Length Wood - Pressure-Treated Wood SELECT 1x4x8 2.95 4 11.8

2 - 4x4 Posts 8' Length Wood - Pressure-Treated Wood SELECT 4x4x6 8.99 2 17.98

2 - 2x4 Board 8' Length Spruce - Kiln-Dried Spruce Lumber GENERIQUE 2x4x10 3.49 2 6.98

3 - 2x2 Boards 8' Length Spruce - Kiln-Dried Spruce Lumber GENERIQUE 2x2x8 2.13 3 6.39

2 - 2x6 Boards 8' Length Spruce - Kiln-Dried Spruce Lumber GENERIQUE 2x6x16 9.12 1 9.12
subtotal: 66.47
tax 8.64
total 75.11

I am in Ontario Canada and the material is really expensive if I want to avoid using Pressure-Treated Wood(contains harmful materials):

most expensive:

4 - 1x6 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE, NOT AVAILABLE IN WESTERN CANADA. 1x6x8 7.17 4 28.68
4 - 1x4 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 1x4x8 6.95 4 27.8
2 - 4x4 Posts 8' Length CDR 4 IN. X 4 IN. X 16 FT. D4S GENERIQUE 4x4x16 52.99 1 52.99
2 - 2x4 Board 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 2x4x8 8.13 2 16.26
3 - 2x2 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 2x2x8 7.59 3 22.77
2 - 2x6 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 2x6x8 13.19 2 26.38
subtotal: 174.88
tax 22.73
total 197.61

medium:
dimension unit price quantity subtotal
4 - 1x6 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE, NOT AVAILABLE IN WESTERN CANADA. 1x6x8 7.17 4 28.68

4 - 1x4 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 1x4x8 6.95 4 27.8

2 - 4x4 Posts 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 4x4x8 20.43 2 40.86

2 - 2x4 Board 8' Length Spruce - Kiln-Dried Spruce Lumber GENERIQUE 2x4x10 3.49 2 6.98

3 - 2x2 Boards 8' Length Lumber - Premium Knotty Cedar Lumber GENERIQUE 2x2x8 7.59 3 22.77

2 - 2x6 Boards 8' Length Spruce - Kiln-Dried Spruce Lumber GENERIQUE 2x6x16 9.12 1 9.12
subtotal: 136.21
tax 17.71
total 153.92

Cheapest(Pressure-Treated Wood)
dimension unit price quantity subtotal
4 - 1x6 Boards 8' Length Wood - Pressure-Treated Wood SELECT NOT AVAILABLE IN WESTERN CANADA 1x6x8 3.55 4 14.2

4 - 1x4 Boards 8' Length Wood - Pressure-Treated Wood SELECT 1x4x8 2.95 4 11.8

2 - 4x4 Posts 8' Length Wood - Pressure-Treated Wood SELECT 4x4x6 8.99 2 17.98

2 - 2x4 Board 8' Length Spruce - Kiln-Dried Spruce Lumber GENERIQUE 2x4x10 3.49 2 6.98

3 - 2x2 Boards 8' Length Spruce - Kiln-Dried Spruce Lumber GENERIQUE 2x2x8 2.13 3 6.39

2 - 2x6 Boards 8' Length Spruce - Kiln-Dried Spruce Lumber GENERIQUE 2x6x16 9.12 1 9.12
subtotal: 66.47
tax 8.64
total 75.11

I just checked a few classified ads around Toronto. The prices are about 2/3 of U.S. lumber prices to buy direct from the suppliers. You'll just need to shop around more to find better pricing. Check lumber yards in your area. My experience matches Ana's: the small mom and pop places have better material for the price.

Although I think I wouldn't mind taking a trip to Toronto to get some cheap lumber. $1.75/bdft for white oak is not a price I'm used to seeing.

Thanks I will go to check out local lumber yard.
But I am a newbie and do not have many tools, so maybe going to a store like HD is better option for me as they can cut for me.

My bigger concern is on the various size of each parts:
1. on step 2, 7C+6B = 7 x2.5 + 6x4 = 41.5", which is > board A (38.5")
2. on step 3, the space between the outside edge of the post/leg and the header board on both sides should be (4" - (1+1+1)) = 1/2", not 5/8";
3. on step 4, overhang = (board E 50.5" -(board A 38.5" + two legs 4" x2) ) / 2 = 2" , not 2.5"
4. on step 5, the width is board G 35.5 + F 2 + F 2 = 39.5"
5. on step 6, the width is 39.5 from above + H 2x2 = 43.5"
6. on step 7, frame is 43.5", headboard is 38.5(board A) + 4x2(two legs) = 46.5", so we have 1.5" on each side

So I guess we should change size of board C from 2.5" to 2.

Did I understand it correctly and the numbers do not add up in the plan, or I was totally wrong?

Thanks.

The single most skill you need to learn is how to cut your own lumber. The lumber dealer isn't equipped to make cuts accurate enough for building furniture, and it's not fair to ask them to.

The good news is that you can make each of these cuts with a hand saw. Hand saws have a number of important properties for a beginner:

1. It's cheap. You can pick up a decent hand saw for under $20.

2. They're safe. You can't accidentally cut off a finger with a hand saw.

3. They are easy to use. There are good videos for free on the Internet about using hand saws.

4. Excellent for accuracy. A cheap saw from Lowes is good enough for fine joinery.

I did some homework and found out that actual size and nominal size are different.
So I was totally wrong.

However, another question would be:

We have 2 - 4x4 x 8' for legs, which are 2 x 41" +2 x 31" = 144", so can I buy one 4X4 X 12' instead?

Thanks.

I did some homework and found out that actual size and nominal size are different.
So I was totally wrong.

However, another question would be:

We have 2 - 4x4 x 8' for legs, which are 2 x 41" +2 x 31" = 144", so can I buy one 4X4 X 12' instead?

Thanks.

I did some homework and found out that actual size and nominal size are different.
So I was totally wrong.

However, another question would be:

We have 2 - 4x4 x 8' for legs, which are 2 x 41" +2 x 31" = 144", so can I buy one 4X4 X 12' instead?

Thanks.

I am very movie and I am so on the verge of firing this up, this weekend.

Quick question - Step 3

Now let's add the posts. Predrill 1/2 way through the posts on the outside.

I assume when you say outside - you man on the far left and right? Then do you cover the holes later with wood putty? Would I need a drill press for this step?

Is there a way to attach with pocket holes? Or would that not be as strong? I am making this for a 2 year old.

Hello ana,

been looking for something to build for awhile and saw this thought it would be great. there is something that i need help changing though...well first im going to make it a bunk bed thats the easy part, just trade the foot board for a head board on the bottom bunk and a foot board for a head board on the top. but i wanted to make the side rails stronger so was going to glue two 2x6 and have one longer. i wanted to BOLT the side rail on the side of a bed instead of on the inside...to do this i would just cut out of the 4x4 legs a 2x6 deminsion so it was still flush, but im having troubles figuring out the measurement changes. is this worth it and would it actually make it stronger? OH and im kinda slow at this i dont understand how to do step three.

For those thinking of substituting plywood. Plywood often uses formaldehyde based glues in its production. You do not want that around the kids. Make sure your plywood is free of such glues. Don't rely on the sales guy at the big box store. Contact the manufacturer.

Can you please tell me what I would need to change if we are not using a boxspring? Thank you so much.

Hi Ana,
I was wondering if you could use beadboard or wainscot planking instead of the slats? Since youd want to see the plankinking on both sides could you attach it to a thin piece of plywood? How would you do this? Any suggestions??
Thank you,
Carissa

I've made two sets of simple bunk beds for my kids...I'm having problems with the wood splitting...like when I bump into the side of the post! I even had a 4x4 literally just fall off before assembly, which made me very nervous that these would not hold. Any tips?!

Hi Ana,

I've been looking at your plans on your website and your book, and was finally ready to build my first "real" project. My son needs a big bed and I wanted to make one for him.
After a lot of time spent to recalculate the measures to suit New Zealand bed sizes, I quickly calculated an average price for the bed (originally wanted a Farmhouse bed with storage) and I discovered that the price of wood is just too high here.
On the comments for this "simple bed" plan, you mentionned the cost of 1x3 in Alaska. The equivalent here is a bit over 5 US dollars.
Although I would love to build my own bed, it seems just not realistic as "ready made" beds are just more affordable.
I am SOOOOOOOOOOO disappointed, I even managed to find a Kreg Jig !
I think I will just build small items, unless I grow my own pine trees forest !!!
Thank you again for sharing your plans,
Caroline

Hi there,

I love the bed building so far, but am at a complete loss as to where the screws/nails go.  Does anyone have any update or information on where to add screws, nails, and brackets?  I've just begun this plan, but it seems like it falls apart right after the cut stage.  Would so much appreciate the help on this.

Good afternoon ShaunSmith,

I just finished bulding this bed today. I build the basic headboard and footboard like the plans say (nail gun w/ 1 1/4" nails. I attached the 4 x 4s with 2 inch screws. I used a 1/4" spade bit to bor through the 4 x 4. I came back behind it with a 1/2" bit with a stopped to only go half way through the 4 x 4. I then put my 1/4" spade back on and drilled through the 4 x 4 hole and into the head/foot board a little. I then put on a 3/16" bit and drilled as far as it would go. I attached it with the screw and then filled it in with putty after the fact. For the 2 x 4 on top. Same deal except I used my (http://www.harborfreight.com/22-piece-carbon-steel-tapered-drill-bit-and...) counter sink but so that the screw would be below the surface. Attached two over the 4 x 4 and three along the length of the top. Once in place, I filled them in with putty, sand, paint. I also used 1/4", 5 inch lag bolts to secure the rails to the bed. 

Keith

First off, big fan of the site and love the plans. I built this bed over the past week (off and on due to work and a newborn). I made one change. I cut a 3 1/2" 2 x 2 and put it in the corner at the base of the 4 x 4. Basically, when I put the rails on the overlap of the 2 x 2 rests on this addition. That way you are not trying to put bolts in while holding up the bed. Also, it all lines up perfect everytime. Just a thought I had to make life easier since this bed can be quite dense. Thank you all.

Keith