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Old 04-25-2015, 10:56 AM   #1
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weight limit in penthouse

Hi, Im a new Sportsmobile owner and super stoked. One question I have is what is the weight limit for the upper bunk?
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Old 04-25-2015, 12:17 PM   #2
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Re: weight limit in penthouse

It seems pretty strong and holds me at 190# and my wife at 140# without a problem. That said, it is a little disconcerting to be lying on the lower bed and see from below the penthouse bed panels bend when my wife climbs up there.
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Old 04-25-2015, 01:18 PM   #3
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Re: weight limit in penthouse

There's a video floating around with about 6 kids playing in an SMB penthouse. They're jumping all around like it's a trampoline while adults visit below. The bed panels are flexing like rubber bands but they don't break. It is just 3/4" plywood with foam and upholstery on it and 3/4 ply is pretty strong. I would say several hundred pounds without an issue, but it is wood so it's strength comes from it's ability to flex.

Good luck

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Old 04-26-2015, 01:14 AM   #4
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Re: weight limit in penthouse

Quote:
Originally Posted by 86Scotty
There's a video floating around with about 6 kids playing in an SMB penthouse. They're jumping all around like it's a trampoline while adults visit below. The bed panels are flexing like rubber bands but they don't break. It is just 3/4" plywood with foam and upholstery on it and 3/4 ply is pretty strong. I would say several hundred pounds without an issue, but it is wood so it's strength comes from it's ability to flex.

Good luck

I build a new on as the original was to short for me and i want to have a better mattress. So i had the chance to "open" the original one. It is a skeleton frame of 4mm plywood on each outside and inside there is a structur made from 16mm wood.
All glued together and also with some screws in.
As 86Scotty sais: Together with the upholstery it is realy strong enough to hold two heavy persons even if they are "playing" around
Sorry i did not made a better picture
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Old 04-26-2015, 02:32 AM   #5
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Re: weight limit in penthouse

When I was selling my van I had a German couple come look at it. He was tall and thin but she was very healthy and bore a striking resemblance to a Valkyrie at the end of a Wagner opera. I suggested that they should immediately climb up to the bed and when they did I was a little disturbed by the bending of the metal. I heard her say it was too small in German and thought that would nix it but they continued to peruse the van and even test drove It. I think they were just being polite. Never heard back from them but sold it to a nice young Australian couple who barely made it bend.I'm sure metal fatigue could set in after a while but have not heard of it happening.
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Old 04-26-2015, 10:21 AM   #6
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Re: weight limit in penthouse

What year is your rig? There might be differences. My 1997 had a one-piece upper bunk. I typically slept on the couch, but when I had a friend traveling with me for six months or so, he slept on the upper bunk. Fairly big guy, but only one person (weight around 250#). When he was up on the bunk it had a definite "U" bend in the middle. Eventually, the footman loops that were in the bunk to hold it up to the ceiling came out, and the fabric covering the bunk tore. Um okay, guess we had better fix that!

We took the bunk out onto a picnic table and removed the bottom panel (which is the "ceiling" when you are looking up at it from below) and then the fabric. Then we could see the whole thing and how it was made. It was a full sized slab of plywood (3/4" IIRC), with a perimeter strip of the same ply that was around 3" wide. This was screwed [sorry, make that STAPLED, not screwed] to the other piece (no glue or etc.). The reason the footman loop came out and the fabric tore was that the strip and the slab were separating (hence providing no strength) due to the staples just pulling out vertically.

Had I been at home I would probably have made a whole new upper bunk - it would be easy to make it much lighter and much stronger. However we were out road tripping. So what we did was remove the entire perimeter strip and reinstall it with wood glue, plus screws. Then we put it all back together and let it set up. After that no more sagging, the footman loops were put back, and I sewed the fabric back together. Did fine for the rest of the trip, and no more "taco" sleeping.

So, it seems like they are not all made the same. Mine had never been used by the original owner (they literally had it in storage the whole time they owned the van), and started failing right away with 250# just lying/sleeping on it. However, it could have been both stronger and lighter with a better construction method. The fabric and "ceiling" panel could be re-used so it would still look like it did before, so it would not be to hard or exotic to improve it at home with tools and space to do so.
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Old 04-28-2015, 04:58 PM   #7
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Re: weight limit in penthouse

I'm 330 and it does fine. SMB had told me it should hold 2 200 pound people. Mine is a EB model with a two piece bed.
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Old 05-17-2015, 08:55 AM   #8
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Re: weight limit in penthouse

thanks all for the info!
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