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27 Jul 2019 14:02 #21 by Phoenix
Hi zachbaker,

Welcome to our mattress forum :).

Thank you for the great detail. it always makes it easy to add a few general comments and some thoughts. Thank you DIYnaturalbedding for chiming in ... much appreciated! (DIY has a great level of expertise with many of these latex designs) @mattress4life thanks for adding your experience, always appreciated and helpful to hear from other consumers.

As an aside, I noticed that you only reference Dunlop, which is the latex process that is most widely produced, but it is good to know that the Talalay latex provides many of the same benefits, if not better benefits in some cases depending on preferences.

I've seen several refernences to other Canadian all latex mattresses, but I just haven't come across a cost-effective (high value) option that is zoned and configurable quite like the Obasan. Ideally I'd find something that is half the price or less, same quality latex, and allowed you to swap zoned layers around to get it right. Basically I'm looking for affordable yet quality zoned DIY layers. Obasan, AFAICT, is unique in three ways:
1- zoned, reconfigurable layers
2- 4" layers rather than 3
3- can use a "soft" dunlop option


There are not many mattress companies using the type of latex zoning that Obason uses, is separating the layers and breaking up the density into 1/3's. I can see why this would be more expensive. While I am not trying to talk you out of repurposing your Obassan... I would still try to find ways to sleep on other all latex mattresses made the traditional way, with 9, 10, or 12 inches of latex to see how it matches your personal needs and preferences. There are numerous latex experts listed in our mattress membership listing that have different layer configurations that may work out well for you.

DIY Natural bedding or any of our Mattress Expert members would be happy to share their many years of knowledge and experience. So let us know if you need any other info, or have any other questions.

Phoenix

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21 Sep 2019 17:53 #22 by Rpk38tn
I just purchased a 4 layer latex (13"), soft, med. med firm, med firm (split) latex botanical bliss from plush beds in the medium set up, and my wife loves her side but I'm a heavier person and need more support since I push right through the top soft layer. They are suggesting the 2nd med layer, be pulled and get an extra firm layer and make that my 3rd layer......I am concerned that having a extra firm on top of the med firm wouldnt make much sense? Shouldn't I have the denser layer on the bottom? I am mainly a back sleeper and sometimes on my side.....

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21 Sep 2019 18:26 #23 by diynaturalbedding
Adding the extra firm in any position is a good idea. What iy does is bring more support. It sounds like your body is using your current set up as primarily comfort layers and is sinking through them too quickly. The extra firm would slow down your sinking and give your something to lean against. The medium then on the bottom would be fairly evenly compressed so that it would be supporting you more than if it were on top.

Even if you start with the extra firm on the bottom, with a zippered case, ypu can reareange your layers all you want. Bring the layers to the top that suit you best and bury the others. Remember to keep at least one softish layer on top of comfort followed by at least one firmer layer for support.

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25 Sep 2019 20:59 #24 by Phoenix
Hi rpk38tn,

Welcome to the forum :).

Congratulations on the new Plushbeds Botanical Bliss mattress! :lol: Glad to hear that your wife enjoys her medium-firm mattress build. I'd be interested to know if your side in the construction suggested by the manufacturer is now working out for your larger BMI split.

Expanding a bit on DIY Natural Bedding excellent advice (thank you @diynaturalbedding)

I just purchased a 4 layer latex (13"), soft, med. med firm, med firm (split) latex botanical bliss from plush beds in the medium set up, and my wife loves her side but I'm a heavier person and need more support since I push right through the top soft layer.


I am assuming that you were referring to the Botanical Bliss 12" model, which is 4-layer mattress 3”, 3”, 3 + 2" top layer. Did you purchase the split king or the Calking? I’d also be curious to know what your BMI is.

They are suggesting the 2nd med layer, be pulled and get an extra firm layer and make that my 3rd layer......I am concerned that having an extra firm on top of the med firm wouldn't make much sense? Shouldn't I have the denser layer on the bottom? I am mainly a back sleeper and sometimes on my side.....


You are correct the majority of the time, mattress makers design the layers in a progressive construction , but it is not unheard of to have layers switched to get a "feel" that is slightly firmer(or plusher). Depending on the construction, sometimes is not a bad idea to do this, and in your case, you are not sacrificing durability or adding a weak link … you can always switch them depending on your needs and preferences as DIY suggests.

I find interesting that on the Plushbeds website which shows the Medium and the Medium firm "versions" or build differently than they advised (as in the picture below). Did they say why they did not offer to exchange the soft for the extra-firm?... then you could have the med/med-firm/med-firm/x-firm as the design of the Medium Firm build shown in the picture? Did you discuss this with them? Do you feel this may be too firm?



Last but not least… did they let you know the ILD/density of each layer?
Arpico is a well-known latex manufacturer. With latex, there is a straight-line relationship between density & ILD/IFD. and as the Dunlop latex 3” layers are cut from 6” cores and the latex particles in Dunlop settle more in manufacturing, a 3" Dunlop layer that is cut from the bottom half of a 6" Dunlop core can be firmer than a 3" layer cut from the top half and the top would be softer than the bottom of the layer while with Talalay it's more consistent from top to bottom. So as Dunlop is not as consistent from top to bottom it would be interesting if they happen to know the approx. densities of the different firmnesses. Dunlop ILD ratings are also often a "guess" and at best are only the midpoint of a range so depending on their precision level you have a few variables to work with.

Thanks again and if you have a chance let us know how the new arrangement is working out for you.

Phoenix.

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07 Oct 2019 15:50 #25 by Turquoise
I’m trying to better understand the concept of comfort and support layering, especially in regards to use of latex.

I get that a firmer support layer is important to ensure alignment and that a softer comfort layer provides the cushioning needed to allow heavier parts of the body to sink in.

What I don’t really grasp is the logic behind various recommendations for types of dunlop and layering.

It seems that there are two popular “builds” I see over and over again (so I am guessing that they work for most of the people most of the time):

1. A three- layer along the lines of 3” firm, 3” medium, and 3” soft — often I see the recommendation for the two bottom layers (firm and medium) to be dunlop and the soft layer to be talalay. Then people wind up moving the layers around to achieve the right combination of comfort and support for their personal needs.

2. A two-layer usually along the lines of 6” support and 2” comfort. Often I see a firm dunlop with either a soft dunlop comfort layer or a soft talalay comfort layer. Not as much room to maneuver the layers as with the three-layer build; seems like what people do to fine-tune is experiment with toppers.

Why create a two-layer versus a three-layer, however?

And why mix the talalay with the dunlop? What would the difference be if it was all talalay or all dunlop? Or, on a three layer, if the bottom layer only was a firm dunlop and the subsequent two layers were medium and soft talalay respectively?

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11 Oct 2019 10:07 #26 by Phoenix
Hi Turquoise.

Good questions! ;)

What I don’t really grasp is the logic behind various recommendations for types of dunlop and layering.


When it comes to layering and type of foam or component being used in any particular mattress, the same general concepts apply to all different foams and where they are used in a mattress as comfort, transition, or support. This is more of an in-depth discussion and you’ can learn a little more about comfort (pressure-relief) and support, mattress primary or "deep" support and secondary or "surface" support in post #2 here and their relationship to firmness and pressure relief and the "roles" of different layers in a mattress in and in post #4 here that may also be helpful in clarifying the difference between "support", "pressure relief", "feel" and mattress design.

It seems that there are two popular “builds” I see over and over again (so I am guessing that they work for most of the people most of the time) …. Why create a two-layer versus a three-layer, however?


You are very observant … More individual layers would also give you more options to customize the "feel" and performance of the mattress either before or after a purchase which can be a benefit for some people that need to do some fine-tuning of their mattress. I’d add that there is much more to this than 2 vs 3 mattress layering when it comes to creating a new bed. There are many variables and criteria that manufacturers have to work with when designing new products some of which are more intangible in nature … such as "averages" of consumer’s personal perceptions or what we call PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences)

With the emerging e-commerce brands, the increasing trend is to allow for more flexibility in fine-tuning a mattress to cover a wider range of needs and preferences. The long terms success of any new model (that has a wide enough consumer reach) will depend on the manufacturer's experience, knowledge, and "educated intuition", on how well consumers fit into consumer “averages” and even on the accuracy of interpreting the consumer feedback with the mattress or similar designs. Nobody has a “crystal ball” but some manufacturers are better than others and can better predict the outcome within a range of consumer needs.

You may wish to look at this step by step process of finding your "ideal" mattress in Post #10 here that can dramatically increase your odds that has better quality and value than anything you are likely to find with a major brand or typical mass-market outlet.

And why mix the talalay with the dunlop? What would the difference be if it was all talalay or all dunlop?


Yes, the latex used in each all latex mattress can often be a combination of either Talalay or Dunlop in organic, natural, blended, or synthetic, each having a different feel and price and most likely sourced from different suppliers. This again is connected with both the mattress design and pricing. Dunlop has a different "feel" and performance than Talalay and is less lively or springy. Some people prefer it to Talalay in the comfort layer. The support layer(s) being further away from your body contributes less to the general "feel" of the mattress and using Dunlop in the support core of the mattress where it has less impact and would not subtract much from the feel of someone wanting Tallaly, Dunlop is also less expensive. You can see a Dunlop / Talalay comparison in post #7 here but your own experience is really the only way to know which one you prefer with any certainty. Some people would notice more of a difference than others with transition or support layers that used each material if the top layers were the same type of latex because you will "feel" more of the upper layers than the deeper layers ... at least when you first lie on a mattress. To this, you can also add the cost/price factor than the efficacy, performance and feels of the material used.
There are some videos linked in post #3 here that show the different production processes and again there is more about the differences between Talalay and Dunlop in post #7 here

It is important that you look closely at those variables and decide what is most important to you.
Hope this clarifies some of the differences and helps you move forward with your mattress selection. Looking forward to hearing back on your decision
Phoenix

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14 Oct 2019 12:15 #27 by Mia12345
Hi,
Thanks for all the support and knowledge being shared on TMU. It's easy to feel alone out there struggling to sleep each night on an uncomfortable bed and it can be helpful to know there are others trying to figure out the complexities of mattresses.

I have been on a long journey for a new comfortable bed (1.5 years) after my beloved Simmons Comforpedic Advanced Rest/Luxury Firm memory foam mattress died. I've embarked on DIY out of necessity, after failed attempts with store and online bought mattresses and a realization that I'm particularly sensitive to even the smallest changes in the bed. Customization seems to be the answer, but my hope that I could recreate my past bed as a starting point was dashed by not enough specs being shared by the company (I've copied previous intel from TMU below). Through experimentation, I've gotten closer and closer, but still am not quite there as I still have aches, pain, and nerve compression. I've settled on memory foam as that's the feel that I've liked best in the past, I hate the pushiness of springs, and even latex feels too pushy. I enjoyed being held and sleeping "in" the bed, but can't find the goldilocks sweet spot (in general, I'm either comfortably soft but sinking in too far in butt which hurts lo-back, or not sinking in but too firm/hard on butt/tail bones which hurts/bruises).

I'd love some guidance as I try to figure out where to turn for both comfort and transition layers next. I'm feel like I'm just collecting foam as they're often not returnable!
Are there TMU trusted members in the US who sell memory foam layers? I'd love to speak with someone. It seems that most folks here focus on latex, which I've ruled out through testing. 

Or are there types of stores where you can try out memory foam toppers/layers? It would be great to feel the layers first. Regular box stores don't carry higher quality or density MF toppers. Purchasing online without guidance hasn't been very successful, where density might be listed, but not the ILD.

In the meantime, I've been working with:
-comfort: 3 inches or so MF (trying various combos, such as 1.5 inch 3 lb from Costco or similar box store, 1 inch 4.5 lb from foamorder, 2 inch 5lb by MFS from Amazon)
-transition: 2 inch Dunlop latex and two 1 inch polyfoams labeled "16" or "23"
-core: 5 inch DuraFlex™ D30 Firm foam from foamorder

My past Comforpedic features: • 9.5” High • 9.5” CPA Zippered Bucket • 9.5” CPA Core • 1” 4.0 AirCool Memory Foam with TruTemp Gel • 1” Firm Comfort Foam • 2” 4.5 LB AirCool Memory Foam • 2” Independent Support Technology • 3.5” AirCool Transflexion Core• 1.65 LB 45 ILD AirCool Edge Support

Any thoughts appreciated! I'm at the phase where speaking with someone knowledgeable about memory foam diy construction would really help because I'm stumped and exhausted. Thank you!

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16 Oct 2019 19:02 #28 by Phoenix
Hi Mia12345

my hope that I could recreate my past bed as a starting point was dashed by not enough specs being shared by the company (I've copied previous intel from TMU below)


I very much agree with you.. you‘ve clearly done your due diligence and research… While you may have enjoyed your "beloved Simmons Comforpedic", you are correct that the major brands such as Sealy/Stearns & Foster, Simmons, and Serta, tend to use lower quality and less durable materials in their mattresses than most of their smaller competitors. Those lower quality material(s)/components used in their mattresses will tend to soften or break down prematurely which is why I’d avoid duplicating this mattress based on specs. While there are some more durable components being used there is little to no information about "2” Independent Support Technology", and the "3.5” AirCool Transflexion Core". The perimeter support of 1.65lbs is a much lower density than I would advise for an area of the mattress which is subject to greater mechanical stress. (see the guidelines here )

I've gotten closer and closer, but still am not quite there as I still have aches, pain, and nerve compression. I've settled on memory foam as that's the feel that I've liked best in the past, I hate the pushiness of springs, and even latex feels too pushy


There's nothing "wrong" with liking the feel of memory foam and with mixing memory foam and latex or any other materials because the type of materials that each person likes best in a mattress is really a matter of personal preference. A combination of memory foam on top of latex is a preference choice that some people like a lot but again you are correct that only your own experience will tell if it works well for you in terms of PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences). everything is a matter of tradeoffs even buying a lower density memory foam for the sake of either price or "feel" as long as you realize that you would be giving up durability and don't "buy into" misleading comparisons. There is more about the different ways one mattress can match another one in post #9 here .

Or are there types of stores where you can try out memory foam toppers/layers? It would be great to feel the layers first.


I don't know of any stores that have a larger selection of toppers in your area but trying them "in vitro" may not be that helpful by itself. Every individual layer and component in a mattress or mattress/topper combo (including the cover, FR barrier, any quilting material, and of course all foam layers) will affect the feel and response of every other layer and component both above and below it and the mattress "as a whole". In the end, the “in-home” feel would greatly depend on the mattress or DIY that you will place it on.

Purchasing online without guidance hasn't been very successful, where density might be listed, but not the ILD. ..
Any thoughts appreciated! I'm at the phase where speaking with someone knowledgeable about memory foam diy construction would really help because I'm stumped and exhausted.

Comfort: 3” or so MF (trying various combos, such as
 1.5” 3 lb from Costco or similar box store,
 1” 4.5 lb from foamorder
 2” 5lb by MFS from Amazon
transition: 2” Dunlop latex and two 1” polyfoams labeled "16" or "23"
Core: 5” DuraFlex™ D30 Firm foam from foamorder


From your description, you are a (12”) of different foam combinations. I don’t see any red flag in terms of durability if you keep at around an inch or so of lower density MF in the comfort layer. I would phone Foamorder and explain to them your proposed configuration and the issue that you are still experiencing with it to ask for their advice. Again, you are on the right track and you seem to be in the fine-tuning phase of your DIY I would recommend a phone call, not an email, and going over details of potential configurations, as you can provide more accurate information in real-time and get a higher volume of information in a much shorter period of time. I’d still keep in mind that there are many unknowns, variables, and personal preferences involved for anyone to chose somethings for you or "theorize at a distance” but you can get some more specific recommendations based on the data that you’ve accumulated. Many of our trusted members here have extended experience with and carry/manufacture good quality/value Memory Foam products. Even if you go the DIY route, they would not hesitate to guide you. You may wish to reach out to some of them and find if they carry something that may be a close match. At a quick glance here is a shortlist.
You’ve often mentioned that you are in the “princess on the pea” rage of sensitivity but with your thorough and methodical approach, I have no doubt that you will find the “sweet spot”. As you have experienced, it usually takes a bit of trial and error and a bit of time to get things just right.

I hope this gives you a few more avenues to explore. Please let us know how it goes when you have a chance.

Phoenix

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