Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 09-15-2020, 10:03 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
campism's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Richmond VA
Posts: 183
My van's ceiling is at 6'2", a couple of inches above my head. No current motorcycle but current bicycles that when brought along will probably be on fork mounts in the van, meaning that the bed will need to come down to about 36" above the floor leaving about 30" above the bed when in use, allowing a few inches for bed thickness. Low cabinets and seating in the rear below-bed area should be low enough to permit that bed height.

All theoretical until the building begins. First come head gaskets.
__________________

__________________
The finally-getting-underway project.
campism is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2020, 08:13 AM   #12
Senior Member
 
boywonder's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: So Cal
Posts: 3,142
I would consider steel U channel, roller blade wheels, shoulder screws, acme lead screws and nuts from McMaster and/or some linear actuators. Perhaps aluminum U channel also on the underside of the bed platform for the wheels to ride in.



Scissor lift style...much like SMB penthouse tops.


For a poor man's approach...perhaps a scissor style jack that you hand crank up....one on each side. You'd need a means to guide the bed platform up and down...linear bearings and some shafting from McMaster or maybe something even more basic. If you are only moving it once in a while ......


There are lots of ways to solve this problem.......How much $$ are the off-the shelf mechanisms?
__________________

__________________
2008 E350 RB passenger 4WD SMB penthouse
2013 KTM 350 EXC
2008 KTM 250 XCF-W
2000 KTM 200 EXC
2003 Honda Element
boywonder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2020, 08:31 AM   #13
Senior Member
 
boywonder's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: So Cal
Posts: 3,142
OK...more thinking in the shower......


Here's a robust, inexpensive way if you need to raise/lower occasionally...


4 vertical members...one in each corner...a lower height hole and raised height hole in each member. Think of the little pegs that you move on a bookshelf. The pegs could be shoulder screws with large hand knobs..or ???


Of course this requires manual lifting of the platform..but you can fabricate a very light platform that will easily support two people. I have one in my van that's quite easy to move.



I have other refinements of this design but they would require some sketches to really show the design. I'm about to hop in my van and drive to Moab this morning, so maybe if I get bored along the way....


If you are thinking of a motorized mechanism there's not point discussing these simple manual configurations.
__________________
2008 E350 RB passenger 4WD SMB penthouse
2013 KTM 350 EXC
2008 KTM 250 XCF-W
2000 KTM 200 EXC
2003 Honda Element
boywonder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2020, 08:43 AM   #14
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Parker, CO
Posts: 383
The Winnebago Revel has a electronic lifting bed. Here is a video of the bed mechanics:



The bed appears to use a motor that spins a spool and the seat belt style webbing straps are attached to the spool. As the motor spins it raises or lowers the bed by drawing in or releasing out webbing. The motor looks very similar to the motor on my standing desk, simply converting the rotational motion of the motor to linear motion of the bed. As you can see in the video the motor is part of the bed platform.

From my very limited understanding of linear actuators, it can be difficult to get 2 separate ones in sync with each other. Here is an article talking about getting multiple linear actuators in sync with each other:

https://www.firgelliauto.com/blogs/t...near-actuators

The Winnebago approach seems like it would take up little real estate compared to the scissor lift PH top approach. The critical issue, I would think, would be the amount of overhead support needed in order to support the bed and the weight of its occupants. If you just needed to sleep in it in the lowered position you could potentially install a couple of brackets along the wall that supported the bed in the down position for sleeping and then you would only need to worry about supporting the weight of the bed from overhead, but since you want to have it in a higher position to accommodate the MTB and be able to sleep on it, you probably can't use that approach and will still need some sort of significant reinforcement in the ceiling.
__________________
New Van: 2000 Ford E350 SMB RB42
Old Van(sold): 1995 Dodge B3500 SMB RB33
Ben10281 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2020, 08:45 AM   #15
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Parker, CO
Posts: 383
oooorrrr maybe the linear actuators are not that complicated. These guys have 4 of them raising their bed and it looks pretty clean and simple!

__________________
New Van: 2000 Ford E350 SMB RB42
Old Van(sold): 1995 Dodge B3500 SMB RB33
Ben10281 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2020, 08:50 AM   #16
Senior Member
 
IanF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
Location: Croydon, PA
Posts: 176
Quote:
Originally Posted by 1der View Post
I have given some thought to the idea of bed lifts and to certain degree they have me puzzled.

The idea that is most often proposed is when the bikes are in the van the bed will be up. Does this mean the bed "up"is usable or not in the bikes below the bed configuration? In a high top van I suppose there is a reduced height bed scenario where one could possibly sleep on the bed with the bikes below but what is the available above the bed height?
That is what puzzles me as well. It seems like a system that will take up space, add complexity and weight, but offer minimal benefit for only a handful of situations. But when I'm sleeping in the van, most of the time the bikes will be stowed inside, so being able to lower the bed will not be possible. For easier access to the bikes, I plan to build a sliding tray.
IanF is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2020, 10:41 AM   #17
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 29
Here is the OEM of the bed lifts mentioned earlier:

- https://www.lci1.com/happijac-power-bedlift
- https://www.lci1.com/euro-loft-bed-lift-by-project-2000

Other commercial possibilities are the lift mechanism for a popup top camper or popup truck camper:

- http://www.popupparts.com/

RV parts are usually quite inexpensive, so if can figure out how to buy these parts wholesale, my guess is that it would rival the cost of buying the individual pieces and trying to build your own mechanism.

Basic linear actuators are affordable. Getting them to move in sync adds quite a bit of expense. You need to add a position sensor (typically "hall effect") and a box that monitors the positions and keeps them in sync.

I would avoid a scissor lift if possible. There is a tremendous amount of lift force wasted at the bottom of the stroke pushing sideways rather than up, so it starts at a mechanical disadvantage. There aren't any off the shelf mechanisms. You'll have to figure out a way to keep your stuff clear of the mechanism.

As mentioned earlier, if you build a lightweight bed platform, you could move it up and down manually.
pjtpj is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-02-2020, 06:37 PM   #18
Senior Member
 
campism's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Richmond VA
Posts: 183
Okay, a bed lift might not work for me in this particular van. I still like the idea but it might not be worth it for the resulting bed width. Here's an IKEA bed support that I hung at raingutter level just to see what's what. Max width here is 57".
Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_8316.JPG
Views:	7
Size:	104.0 KB
ID:	36133
Lower down at the bottom of the windows the bed width could be 72" and that is too much difference to give up, especially when you consider that vertical supports for the lift supports would take up a couple more inches per side, further reducing the available bed width up high.

I'll keep the lift in mind and might revisit the idea when I actually begin on the interior. Right now I'm doing the head gaskets.
__________________
The finally-getting-underway project.
campism is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-02-2020, 07:04 PM   #19
Senior Member
 
boywonder's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: So Cal
Posts: 3,142
Quote:
Originally Posted by campism View Post
Okay, a bed lift might not work for me in this particular van. I still like the idea but it might not be worth it for the resulting bed width. Here's an IKEA bed support that I hung at raingutter lever just to see what's what. Max width here is 57".

Spacious......the SMB bed is 39" wide.......
__________________
2008 E350 RB passenger 4WD SMB penthouse
2013 KTM 350 EXC
2008 KTM 250 XCF-W
2000 KTM 200 EXC
2003 Honda Element
boywonder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-02-2020, 07:08 PM   #20
Senior Member
 
campism's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Richmond VA
Posts: 183
I'll need to convince my wife that it's spacious.
__________________

__________________
The finally-getting-underway project.
campism is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3
Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Sportsmobile SIP or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:05 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×