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Building my bed own foundation 21 Oct 2013 07:18 #1

I'm going to build a base for my BB Cool luxe but have a few questions before I begin. My main purpose of building my own is to keep cost low.

I am fully confident in my carpentry skills that I can build it but my knowledge of lumber is lacking. I know oak is strongest but would obviously be quite expensive and overkill for this project but I don't want something too soft that will sag overtime.
My plan is use 2x10 for the outer frame (i like a high bed) and regular 2x4's for frame support with 3" spaced slats across the top. I've read a lot that the slats are usually pine? Is that correct and if so why is this? I think moisture levels in the wood would also be a factor especially for the slats since the minimum 3" spacing is for ventilation. I saw one DIY foundation used 1/2" MDF cut into strips. Would this be sufficiently strong enough and cheaper than buying pre cut slats?

I'm going to put a fabric of some sort around the outside to cover the 2x10 frame for cosmetic purposes, but I'm wondering if I should cover the top too to keep any rough edges from snagging on the mattress? The only reason I'm not playing on the side of "better safe than sorry" is I wonder about air flow. Will covering the top restrict the air flow and negate the 3" gaps?

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Last edit: by Lucky8926.

Building my own foundation 21 Oct 2013 14:02 #2

Hi Lucky8926,

Hopefully some of the forum members with better carpentry skills and knowledge than I have can provide some guidance and insight.

Outside of the two links in the foundation thread from the members here who provided instructions for their DIY projects ... post #2 here and post #5 here and post #4 here may have some helpful information and links.

I'm certainly interested in seeing your final design and hopefully some pictures as well.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by AdminTMU. Reason: Updating link to https: status

Building my own foundation 21 Oct 2013 17:07 #3

I got all the lumber and other pieces. Price came to $99 Here is what I got, i'll try and do a full write up with pics tomorrow. This is for a King by the way

Two 2"x10"x14' (Will be cut to length and be used for frame)
Two 2"x4"x14' and one in 8' length (will be cut to length and be used for head to toe support inside frame)
16 pine slats which are 2.5"x1"x8' (will be cut to length and be used for side to side support on top of 2x4's)
Six 2x4 hangers (used to attach 2x4's to 2x10 outer frame)
Four corner brackets (used to connect 2x10 frame pieces)
1 lb. box of 1.5" screws

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Building my own foundation 21 Oct 2013 18:13 #4

Hi Lucky8926,

I switched the last 3 posts to a new thread so all the information is in one place and I can link it in the foundation post when you've had the chance to build it and share the information and pictures of your design.

Thanks again for sharing your efforts :)

Phoenix
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Building my own foundation 22 Oct 2013 16:59 #5

Lucky8926 wrote: I got all the lumber and other pieces. Price came to $99 Here is what I got, i'll try and do a full write up with pics tomorrow. This is for a King by the way

Two 2"x10"x14' (Will be cut to length and be used for frame)
Two 2"x4"x14' and one in 8' length (will be cut to length and be used for head to toe support inside frame)
16 pine slats which are 2.5"x1"x8' (will be cut to length and be used for side to side support on top of 2x4's)
Six 2x4 hangers (used to attach 2x4's to 2x10 outer frame)
Four corner brackets (used to connect 2x10 frame pieces)
1 lb. box of 1.5" screws


I think I see where you are going with this...

It looks to be Queen or King size, so it could be heavy and awkward at those dimensions with 2x material. You may need triangular bracing to stiffen it and to keep it from racking.

Will it sit on the floor or in a bed frame or will you have legs for elevation? Attaching legs can be a challenge, but less so with 2x material. I suggest a mattress height of 25-28".

I would have chosen wider slats, say 1x6, as they would be individually stronger, less likely to distort, allow more fasteners at each end, and just 11 gaps is plenty of ventilation.

I would cover it with fabric to hide and soften it's presence and to avoid any pine sap.

Congrats on doing it yourself!

zzz

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Building my own foundation 23 Oct 2013 05:19 #6

Sleeping, thank you for the critique.

It's a king size, but I'm not worried about heavy or awkward, it's a mattress foundation not something I will be lugging around with me everywhere.

It will sit in a bed frame with headboard and footboard that have also been supported witun2x4 "legs" in spots that there is a longer span to help support and stiffen things up.

Wider slats aren't necessary for strength since there are also 3 2x4's running head to toe for support. 11" gaps are way too wide. Everyone including the mattress manufacturer recommends no more than 3" gaps. Total mattress height will be about 28".

I plan on getting a sham of some sort to cover it for appearance and protection (as mentioned in 1st post) a sham will have thinner breathable material on top with thicker on the sides which will work out perfect.

I'll try and get pictures and small instructional on here today or tomorrow.

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Building my own foundation 23 Oct 2013 05:59 #7

Lucky8926 wrote: 11" gaps are way too wide. Everyone including the mattress manufacturer recommends no more than 3" gaps.


Agreed, 11" gaps are too wide. I meant 11 gaps... 12 1x6s in 80" will give you 11 gaps at ~1.25" per gap.

zzz

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Building my own foundation 25 Oct 2013 06:05 #8

I got all the pics loaded on my computer, now just have to get the narrative written down and get it all posted here.

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Building my own foundation 27 Oct 2013 14:38 #9

Ok, here is my King size foundation/base build with pictures. The material list is above. I used framing hardware such as corner brackets and 2x4 supports which is probably overkill for this, but I wanted to ensure it was build sturdy. The brackets are inexpensive and are more reliable than just using screws to attach all the frame pieces. One thing though, you will probably have to make the holes in the brackets bigger to accommodate screws. these are usually held in place by nails when framing up wall, decks, etc. I just picked a drill bit big that was about the same size as the diameter of the screws. You don't have to do all of the holes, as you will see below I only used 3 screws on each side of the corner bracket. That is more than enough to keep everything in place.

I started out by measuring from foot board to headboard and subtracted about an inch to have some wiggle room when I put the base in place and cut the side pieces to this length. Next I used a router to cut about an inch wide groove in the top of the side rails just deep enough so the slats would lay flush across the top. (this took some trail and error to get the right depth)

Routed out section for slats


If you don't have a router, you could just lay them on top of the 2x10 but I'm a little OCD and this would've bothered me even though I would never see it..... LOL

The I put both side rails in place and held them with a clamp and got my side to side measurement, once again subtracting a little bit for some wiggle room and cut the head and foot pieces to length. Once I had all 4 of the 2x10's cut I put them together using corner brackets. These brackets aren't usually a perfect 90 degrees so you have to bend them a little to keep the frame square, I suggest using a speed square or L square.

Corner Bracket.


Finished frame


Once all 4 sides were together I cut the slats to length. I used a 3" piece of wood as a spacer to speed up the process of getting them set in at 3" spacing.

3" spacer


I opted for using my air nailer over screws to keep the slats in place because it's a lot quicker, and you don't really need a strong connection for them anyway. It's just to keep them from sliding back and forth.

All the slats in place.


Once all the slats were nailed in place I flipped the base over to attach the 2x4's that ran head to toe. I used 2x4 framing brackets to attach them for added strength. Measure the distance inside the head/foot 2x10 and cut to length (The Brackets extend down the length of the 2x4 so they don't have to have a tight fit.) I spaced the 2x4's like so; one in the middle, then put one on each side of the middle one splitting the difference. Also check for a "crown" or bow in the 2x4, If it has one make the bow side up so when weight is applied to the frame when it's all done it won't sag. When you attach the brackets make sure you put some pressure down on the 2x4 to ensure its right up against the slats so there isn't any sag. Also remember, the frame is upside down so you have to install the brackets upside down too (see picture below) I didn't worry about putting any screws in the sides of the bracket to attach them to the 2x4. It will be wedged between the bracket and the slats so it isn't going anywhere.

2x4 brackets


When that was done, I flipped it up on it's side and put nails in the slats where they went accross the 2x4's. Not necessary, but once again my OCD felt the need to do it. Finish nails are cheap anyway....



In place sitting in my bed frame


I did add 4 small pieces of cut 2x4 in in the middle of the head/foot board and on both sides because of the weight and the long span. Is it necessary, or just more overkill on my part? I'm not sure but I didn't want to take any chances of the side boards breaking. You can barely see one of the them in the pic above, in between the 4th & 5th slat on the left side. You can see them, once the mattress is on but I'm going to stain it to match the bed frame to help blend in. I would rather be safe than sorry...

I would say from first cut until last nail it took me an hour & half to 2 hours. Biggest pain was getting it square in the very beginning, but it's also the most important. Hope this helps, and if you're at all handy and have the right tools, I would suggest building versus buying your own. Most places I saw wanted $200-$500 for King foundations and I guarantee this is much more strong and reliable and only cost about $100.

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Building my own foundation 27 Oct 2013 17:03 #10

Hi Lucky8926,

Wow ... thanks for sharing your foundation design and instructions. It looks to me like it's built like a tank :)

I have a couple of questions that aren't clear (at least to me) from the pictures.

In the last picture "sitting in the bedframe" I can't make out what the foundation is sitting on. It looks like there are the 2x4 legs that you cut under the foundation side rail on the left side (facing the picture) but that the right side rail is resting on the floor (I can't see any legs under it). I also can't see how you attached the foundation to the headboard and footboard to hold it off the ground and bear the weight of the foundation and mattress.

With the design you used with three 2x4's on edge in the center I doubt that you would ever see any sagging in the foundation but some mattress warranties specify that they require two legs in the center of a frame down to the floor in a queen and king size to meet the warranty criteria so in case that ever became an issue it may be worth adding two legs under the center 2x4.

If you could add a picture to clarify what it's sitting on and how it's attached to the headboard and footboard it would be great.

Thanks again for sharing your design, instructions, and pictures :)

Phoenix
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Last edit: by Phoenix.
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