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Old 05-13-2015, 08:20 AM   #1
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4" std foam + 2" memory foam. who has it? other options?

Hi everyone.

I've been told that a 4" standard foam with a 2" memory foam topper makes a really confortable bed.

I never slept in a camper so I have no idea if it's true. Ok I know personal taste must be a factor here but generally I don't need a specific kind of bed to get some sleep.

The bed size will be 72"x72" composed of two 24"x72" bench and two 12"x72" back rest.
I also want the option to just remove the two back rest and end up with two small 24"x72" beds on each sides (if I go camping with my brother)

The foam will be on a 5/8" plywood and the covering cloth will be stappled to the back.

Do you have any other suggestions? Please keep in mind budget...

Will I wear out the foam using it as a bench? Or will I feel the plywood in my back?


DIY conversion build, extended 2010 Ford 5.4L E250 + high top, from Montreal Canada, new to all this so please be patient and clear with me (never built or camped in a van yet)
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Old 05-13-2015, 10:46 AM   #2
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Re: 4" std foam + 2" memory foam. who has it? other options?

I just designed and built something like this in my van. I still need to choose my padding too. I measured 72" across too but actually lost length (due to contours and whatnot of the van) so the tables ended up being 20" instead of 24".

Anyways, I don't have an answer for you as I'm at the same point as you. Although I won't be stapling it to my benches since they're hinged for storage access. I don't think I'll use memory foam either. 2" memory foam I think will be floppy and hard to maneuver in the van when moving them over for accessing storage. I have a temperpedic bed in my bedroom. I have a little experience with the stuff.

In the photo below. You'll see I designed the center table into 2 tables to I could turn them sideways for a different style of space and so I can take one away if I want. Also you'll see the little white blocks on the floor. I drilled thru them thru the floor and put dowel pins in them to hold the benches firmly in place. Then I can pop them out and take the benches out if I need to instead of screwing the benches themselves into the floor. I just realized while typing this I could've put those blocks inside of the storage compartments. Oops. Oh well.


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Old 05-13-2015, 11:02 AM   #3
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Re: 4" std foam + 2" memory foam. who has it? other options?

We went with a medium density 3" natural latex for our CCV bed, a little, ok a lot more expensive than the foam, but much nicer to sleep on, no off gassing, no funky smells. I would go with the soft density next time for a bit more comfort in the 3", but you might be fine with it in a 4"
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Old 05-13-2015, 02:10 PM   #4
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Re: 4" std foam + 2" memory foam. who has it? other options?

For the bed in my van, I went with 4" medium density foam cushions and I purchased a "short Queen bed" 2" bed topper from Camping World. I'm real happy with the comfort.
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Old 05-27-2015, 11:39 AM   #5
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Re: 4" std foam + 2" memory foam. who has it? other options?

I have a queen size futon mattress with a queen size 2" memory foam mattress topper. Nothing special but I had both already before I bought the van so it's working well for us.

My bed is permanent so I went with something cushy.

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Old 05-27-2015, 01:11 PM   #6
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Re: 4" std foam + 2" memory foam. who has it? other options?

i called a local custom rv bed maker about a year ago asking some of these same questions. he was pretty adamant about choosing the right foam for the right application. he said with my weight that i would need 3-4" of one density, and strongly suggested 2-3" of a different density to keep me from ever reaching the plywood (besides my knees crawling into the sack of course). its been a while since i talked with him, so i dont remember his density recommendations, but he was pretty affordable imho. he quoted me 300-350 bucks for a 54x84 (ish) setup. that was with foams, the rv diaper sounding foam protectant layer, and whatever material i wanted on the outside.
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Old 05-27-2015, 01:41 PM   #7
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Re: 4" std foam + 2" memory foam. who has it? other options?

As shenrie says above, "typical" foam comes in two different ratings. You can choose which of either you want to customize your application.

First is density. This will be in the form of 2lbs. per cubic inch or something like that. The denser the foam, the more expensive and the more long lasting. You know how sometimes there will be a piece of heavy old foam that just doesn't die? High density is why. Basically, the higher the density, the more "foam in the foam."

Second is firmness, usually measured in "ILD" (something like indentation load deflection). These numbers usually from something like 18, which is super soft; to something like 50, which is very very firm.

I've specced foam for quite a few camper/beds over the years, and since it's hard to know for sure until you use it for awhile, I hedge my bets by ordering more/different/thinner layers that I can rearrange to sllghtly customize it (and/or replace one thinner cheaper layer if I got it too wrong). Typically, buying two 1" pieces is about the same price as one 2" piece, so there is not much penalty. And if you have the layers covered, they tend to stick together.

So say I wanted a 4" bed/couch. Off the top of my head I'd get at least 2 lb. foam (if not 3lb), then 1" of 50, 1" of 35, 1" of 25, and 1" of 18 ILD. Or something like that. You get the idea anyway. Thus a 4" bed that I can shift around the layers to adjust the feel (and or replace one with something else if I went too far wrong).

All that said, I might not get "regular" foam these days. I'd probably look into latex. And I now really like topping any bed/couch with a ~2" self-inflating camping pad. These are brilliant, super long lasting, and allow instant customization of firmness by letting out a bit of air, or adding a puff or two. And in a pinch you have a camping pad, or something you can thrown down on the floor for an extra guest, or throw down on someone's spare room floor to avoid the hide-a-bed So now I'd get something like 2-3" of firm foam, plus the camping pad "topper." REI makes good ones, or there is the Thermarest brand. They are nothing like an old air mattress, btw.
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Old 05-27-2015, 05:23 PM   #8
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Re: 4" std foam + 2" memory foam. who has it? other options?

IKEA has pretty good prices on well-made mattress toppers, including latex. You might check them out: http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/categ ... oom/24826/
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Old 05-27-2015, 05:54 PM   #9
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Re: 4" std foam + 2" memory foam. who has it? other options?

I have a 4" foam bed/seat that's upholstered. I went with 3" of Q41 foam and 1" of Q31 foam on the top. It's slightly firm but I'm OK with that. I'd rather it be on the firm side than too soft. At my local foam supplier, the H series of foam was mid quality and the Q series was the highest quality that they offered.


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