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Old 08-10-2009, 07:49 PM   #1
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Location: Missouri
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ph bed?

We just bought a SMB that does not have a bed in the PH. It is a Dodge Ram Van. Does anyone have design ideas or details on how to construct one? Memory foam for a mattress? Thanks. Peggy

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Old 08-10-2009, 09:23 PM   #2
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Re: ph bed?

I recall reading that there are different grades of 3/4 plywood and that one of them is something like "span rated" and bends less over a span.

My 3 piece bed doesn't give a bit when I jump up there at about 180 lbs so I am inclined to think it may be true.

SMB is pretty reasonable in price on the few items I have looked at.

Austin, Texas
1995 SMB E250
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Old 08-10-2009, 09:33 PM   #3
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Re: ph bed?

Check the message:


and the comment by Charlie (an architect and the second one down) on the type of plywood to use....
'01 Ford EB50p Quigley 4WD
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Old 08-11-2009, 03:09 PM   #4
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Re: ph bed?

If I remember correctly SMB charges about $500 for their bed. I elected to make my own. Figured I could make 1-2 mistakes before I reached the $500 dollar mark.

Interesting about the "span rated" plywood. Did not know of that before. Will ask the guys at my local lumber yard some time about it.

I made our bed platform out of a sheet of 4' X 8' 3/4 inch cabinet grade plywood. Cut it down to 41" inches wide by 6'6" long. Did the long cut FIRST and used the 7" wide scrap to make the platform 1.5 inches thick at both ends. 7" wide at the foot (where you climb up) and 4" wide at the head of the bed. Do not know if you have a power roof or a manual roof. The manual roof is very sensitive to the amount of weight you can hang from it. Last time I weighed our bed in came in at about 80#'s. That leaves about 40-50 pounds of lift still on the roof when you have the bed suspended out of the way.

The bed supports our weight and a grand kids fine with no noticeable bow or springiness. If hung for the ceiling for several days though (van home and working on it) I do see a slight bow developing in the longitudinal direction. It corrects itself after the bed in on the rails for a day or two.

Good Luck
Len & Joanne

The Green TARDIS
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Old 05-04-2010, 11:05 AM   #5
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Re: ph bed?

You might try 3/4" Marine grade plywood as it is much stronger due to 7 plys instead of the regular 5. Then have a memory foam cut to fit. Would be much more comfortable than the foam SMB uses.
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