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Old 06-02-2019, 09:16 PM   #1
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Bed Slope

Do folks typically build in some slope to their beds? I'm thinking I should make the head of the bed (back of van) an inch or two higher than the front so it's level or slightly head up even with people and when the van is loaded. Will need to handle two people and a dog which will be a little over 400 pounds. And should that 1 or 2 inches be compared to the unloaded floor of the van or to the ground when the van is unloaded?

I'm working on a Toyota Sienna, so likely have softer suspension than most everyone else here. But, this is also a pretty basic build (prototype/proof of concept right now). Currently will be just a sleeping platform and typical camping gear in addition to what I usually carry in back (full-sized spare tire, compressor, tools, fluids, etc). Even at full build-out it will be closer to a SUV drawer system than a typical SMB. I do have airbags in the rear springs so I can compensate for heavy loading to some degree.

The bed's legs will be easy to switch out for different lengths if we don't like something, but I'd like to figure out where to start from and make the first test run as comfortable for the boss as possible.

Thanks,
Mike
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Old 06-02-2019, 09:29 PM   #2
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Typically no, but not a bad idea, especially in a soft sprung Sienna. I usually wind up on a slight slope, I carry leveling blocks, and always bias my level so our heads are slightly higher, which for me, avoids and early morning headache from the blood pooling in my brain.



I had one for a few years, best riding van I've ever had, best front heated leather seats my butt has been in.


For what it's worth, I added Firestone airbags to mine, the kind that tuck inside the Toyota rear coil springs. It sure helped when fully loaded with camping gear, sometimes towing
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Old 06-03-2019, 05:40 AM   #3
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No heated seats in my Sienna but I do have the AirLift version of the coil spring helpers in back. I do a little bit of towing (used to do considerably more) and they are awesome!

-Mike
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Old 06-03-2019, 08:14 AM   #4
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Depending on where the van gets parked for camping, I sleep with my head at either end of the bed..depending on parking slope. I park with an attempt to have no side-to-side slope but don't worry much about head-to-toe.
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Old 06-03-2019, 09:13 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boywonder View Post
Depending on where the van gets parked for camping, I sleep with my head at either end of the bed..depending on parking slope. I park with an attempt to have no side-to-side slope but don't worry much about head-to-toe.
It seems to me that if sleeping with your head to the front of the van, it would make getting in and out of bed a pain (esp in the middle of the night without disturbing a second person).

-Mike
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Old 06-03-2019, 09:54 AM   #6
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I always sleep head to back door. When I built the van I leveled the bed to the van, and I've worked on the suspension so the floor is level to the ground. If my van isn't going to be level I make sure to park where my head is higher. Too much off level and we slide downhill overnight. That's what leveling blocks are for. Side to side is more important to me though.
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Old 06-03-2019, 03:27 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by FloridaNative View Post
The bed's legs will be easy to switch out for different lengths if we don't like something, but I'd like to figure out where to start from and make the first test run as comfortable for the boss as possible.
Thanks,
Mike
Just spitballing from a distance - You referenced the legs could be switched out, so what if you just use some type of "adjustable legs"...lot of different types out there (I was searching about a month ago for a different type project, but kind of amazed how many different versions are available). This way you could reasonable adjust for any slope (if you placed in all 4 corners)
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