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pils

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I've set myself the task of designing a 'day bed (90cm x 190cm base frame)' for my severely mentally and physically disabled (adult) son, forgive me if this is sacrilegious, out of die cut 18mm poplar plywood. On occasion he has epileptic seizures and we require a 'safe space' downstairs.
Having hummed and hawed with gates, tambours, bifold-sliding-pocket-doors etc, I came up with the below. (I may split the front 'gate' in two horizontally)


nathanael_daybed_v308_a.png nathanael_daybed_v308_b.png nathanael_daybed_v308_c.png

In a perfect world all joins would be bolts (except for the two rear and two front corner posts/strengtheners/joins/guide-rail) to enable taking apart.

I'm wondering if anyone has any bright/clever/genius/simple ideas/guidance that might enable me to better construct this behemoth regarding the 'joins', bolt/nut/screw types, and/or 'weak points' and/or anything really...

do bear in mind that (this particular) die cut can only cut on one plane (so I / or someone competent would be responsible for drilling guide holes in some places for nuts/bolts (like this? > https://www.amazon.com/IKEA-HEMNES-Bedframe-Replacement-Classic/dp/B01MZ7HNQ1)

FYI I know virtually nothing about woodworking and even less about joins/bolts/plywood...and am terrible at drilling in a straight line...I can post proof if required. :]

ps. the frame is covered with folded over and tucked in duvets - part of the purpose of the gaps.
pps. I'm still tinkering with the design.
ppps. forgive me if this isn't really 'woodworking' but I'm out of my depth with the 'detail'.

kindest to all

pils
 

NickM

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I’m afraid that I can’t answer your questions but I hope that someone on here can help.

Certainly no need to seek forgiveness for asking. It definitely is woodworking and clearly a very important project for you.
 

Cabinetman

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Yes I agree, and just to say you knew something I didn’t, I had to look up diecutting. But I don’t think that’s quite what is required as 18 mm ply isn’t very easy to slice in that way I think you may need a jigsaw to give the effect you want but it’s a lot of work to cut that pattern on the sides, Would it be possible for you to do the pictures in a slightly different way? As on my iPad at fully expanded I couldn’t really see what was going on, what all the parts were and how it worked.
I’m sure we would all like to help Pils. Ian
 

Droogs

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Is this to be put up and stay up for a while or is it to be made as and when? Also do you intend to have this where it can be seen or in a private area (just from a design POV)? If his seizures are quite "violent" ie lots of moving it may be prudent to have some form of metal framing that the ply is then attached to.
 

gog64

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Hi Pils. To start off, an you clarify a little? Do you mean that you are going to design the bed, then have someone CNC cut your design and deliver the parts to you ready for assembly?
 

Tris

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Hi,
This looks like the type of project that a cnc router would be ideally suited to. I see you are based in Oxfordshire and a quick Internet search brought up a decent number of companies that do cnc work.

I'm assuming the mattress base will sit on a timber frame of about 6" x 2"? In which case standard bed bolts would work well to hold the frame together.

Do you need a gap between the base and sides all the way around to tuck the duvets in or only along the sides? It will be easier if the head and foot boards can be screwed to the frame crossmembers.

I can picture the side panel split horizontally as you describe, and with a mechanism akin to a gate latch to secure it so that it can be closed in one movement but won't rattle open. The only trouble is I don't know if a latch like this exists so if anyone knows of a furniture catch like this please jump in.

Sorry for rambling on and good luck with the project.
Tris
 

sometimewoodworker

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That design is optimal for a CNC and as such has a significant number of problems if you’re going to do all the work yourself (I have no idea what “die cut“ means)

for the legs I would glue and screw 2 pieces of plywood at right angles the hight of the bed and 10+15cm wide like this
045749BB-46C4-4FF7-9D8E-F2F00BDBF5E4.png9D17863D-A7F5-4692-B447-EDF7D664E6A9.png

Everything can be made from plywood strips glued and screwed together to make panels the panels and bottom frame can be bolted to the legs for disassembly. If you want one side to be a sliding fit you can glue a plywood strip down 2 legs that will give a slot for the side.

Bed bolts really need a much thicker framework than 18mm plywood will provide.
 

pils

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Firstly, thank you for all the responses. Secondly, I said 'die cut' by mistake (I screen print on occasion).
Thirdly, I'll attempt to answer everyone en masse...

I design, some one else (far more talented) ensures joins/bolts/screws etc actually function then, yes, someone else cnc cuts.
Laser cut on one plane with 18mm poplar ply. base frame is 90cm x 190cm. (can't do inches anymore :[ )
It doesn't need to be taken apart regularly, but it would be helpful if the main connections (not the guiderails) weren't screws.
There are two surface materials in the images fyi: ply face on and ply side on (the lined edges).
I've steered away from 'legs' because of the 'flat' nature of the chosen material methodology.
Bolts would always be through at least two depths of 18mm.
no need for gap as only need sheet/wetproof sheet on base (he doesn't sleep under anything).
Gates are troublesome (we already have a handmade bed with a quarter-length gate in for his bedroom which works fine but not for a daybed downstairs - small room with not enough space for full/half length gates)
This is supposed to be a 'day bed' that we/he can at least sit on when not required.
POV aesthetics are acceptable.
the daybed is 'post-seizure' recovery time (anything from two minutes to 12 hours) so comfort and toddler-like safety is required. the sides are covered with duvets to prevent knocking as he rumbles about (like a toddler).

I started this out of frustration with the available 'special needs' beds that are either 'plastic tents', 'plastic soft big bouncy castle structures', 'wood adult babylike cots' or, worst of all, 'institutionalised style care beds'.
this, to me, is extremely attractive by comparison. :]

Do please feel free to critique, correct, suggest etc. And thank you again for your thoughts.
bed.pngbed_sides_rear_joins_guiderails.pngbed_slat_base.pngnathanael_daybed_v308_explode.png
 

AJB Temple

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OK, I am going to be brutally frank. Don't take offence. To me it looks like a crate. I also think the draped duvets idea is likely to look awful and poses a risk.

I think I would keep on designing. Maybe something like a Knole sofa, but adapted to a suitable day bed size, and with a drop down front as well as the usual drop down sides. Fully upholstered in a fabric than can be wiped down as necessary but still looking aesthetically pleasing.

Here is a sofa version to illustrate what I mean. For safety, the roping pegs could be large and spherical. Generally with these the arms and sometimes the back can be let down to different angles. Cushions easily turn day beds into sofas.

Sorry to hear you are having to deal with this. I hope it all works out OK for you.


Screenshot 2020-10-02 at 17.45.46.png
 

Droogs

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regarding the "gate" you could consider a tambour that you pull up rather than pull down with a couple of clasps etc
 

AJB Temple

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PS. You may also find it worth looking out online for French day beds. These come up quite often and all you would need is to make an upholstered back and front panel to fit on when needed.
 

pils

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regarding the "gate" you could consider a tambour that you pull up rather than pull down with a couple of clasps etc
if you read the original post you'll see I tried all different methods of 'enclosure'... :] I confess this may not be the answer but it's the closest so far...
 

pils

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pils

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OK, I am going to be brutally frank. Don't take offence. To me it looks like a crate. I also think the draped duvets idea is likely to look awful and poses a risk.

I think I would keep on designing. Maybe something like a Knole sofa, but adapted to a suitable day bed size, and with a drop down front as well as the usual drop down sides. Fully upholstered in a fabric than can be wiped down as necessary but still looking aesthetically pleasing.

Here is a sofa version to illustrate what I mean. For safety, the roping pegs could be large and spherical. Generally with these the arms and sometimes the back can be let down to different angles. Cushions easily turn day beds into sofas.

Sorry to hear you are having to deal with this. I hope it all works out OK for you.


View attachment 93518
granted, it does look like a 'crate' but it still looks less offensive than anything else on offer. :] this is a work in progress constrained by space/height of sides/ease of access/strength/safety (we successfully use duvet sides (which need to be washed) on his main bed - which also looks remarkably like a crate). This is what I do for fun. :]
 

gog64

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Hi Pils, I am a little unclear on exactly what advice you're after, but I think you're pretty content with your existing design, you mainly want suggestions on how to assemble it without screws and so that it can be (partially) disassembled infrequently. Is that right? If that's the case, the term you probably want to Google is: "knock down fixings". Bearing in mind what you previously said ("terrible at drilling in a straight line") I suggest that you find someone who has a Mafell DDF40 or a Festool Domino and get them to drill the holes and then use the matching fixings. Given the project, I'd happily do that for you, but I'm a bit far away (Herefordshire).

Having said all that, I wouldn't design the bed this way myself. I don't think it will be strong enough for regular use. I think I'd create a HD design using solid wood and using the heavy duty Domino XL break down fixings to assemble the sub components. I hope that makes sense?
 

AJB Temple

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Your examples are not what I mean by a French daybed. I mean one like an ordinary bed with bedhead and tailboard both tall and fixed. Second hand ones are cheap when they come up. Under £500.

I agree with Gog64 about strength. I don't think your plywood design will last long with a strong and restless adult male. I don't want to go into details but I have some experience of this. We ended up making a sleigh bed with sloping tall sides and a similar back. The front had a removable metal frame that was held on with the kind of drop release bolts used on lorry trailers.

Anyway, you seem set on your course and ridicule other ideas so I will drop out now and wish you well with it and your son.
 
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