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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
2015 Promaster 118" Low Roof

I have been way behind on my van conversion due to having a double bathroom remodel that has taken precedence; so my wife tells me.

We are planning to camp for a week of mountain biking in the Southwest starting this Saturday, so I built a "temporary" sleep platform that we can use until I get the folding dinette built later this summer.

I'm 200# and when I bounced hard on the edge of the platform it was solid, so I have no concerns that it will hold two people without collapsing; keep in mind that being glued is key to having a strong platform.

The 2 x 4's could be replaced with 2 x 6's if you really want some strength.

A 2 x 4 vertical brace under the middle support, running to the floor, would be an easy security blanket.

Dimensions: 73" x 42" (Overall)

Parts:
2 x 4 x 8' (4)
12 x 4' x 8' Plywood (1)
Construction screws 1.5" (~40)
10/24 x 3/4" machine screws (10)
Medium fender washers (10)
Wood Glue
Rivet Nuts 10/24 (10)
Everbilt 1-1/2 in. x 14-Gauge x 48 in. Zinc-Plated Slotted Angle: http://www.homedepot.com/p/Everbilt...in-Zinc-Plated-Slotted-Angle-802417/204225778

Parts Cutting:
Plywood 73 x 42
2 x 4 x 73 (2)
2 x 4 x 70 (1)
2 x 4 x 39 (2)
Slotted Angle 40.5" (2), round exposed corners

First things first, look at the van and identify the retention nylon tree "plugs" that hold the top of the lower panel in place, over the wheel wells. The center three holes are in line and ready for Rivetnuts, however the last hole on either end is too low, so you'll need to drill new 1/4" holes (above the two existing holes), in line with the three usable holes.

Once the holes are drilled and the five Rivetnuts are installed, put the steel slotted angle iron in place using 10/24 x 3/4" machine head screws and medium fender washers.

Now build the frame with the 73" 2 x 4's to the outside, 39" 2 x 4's to the inside, then add the 70" 2 x 4 as the central beam between the 39" 2 x 4's. Plywood on top, use the plywood to square the frame. Glue and screw as you go.

Ideally you will install the platform before the glue has dried, that way it will dry in place and fit better over the long run.

Final install should include the addition of a few wood screws inserted from below attaching the slotted angle iron to the wood frame.

Total build time four hours including drilling and placing Rivetnuts.
 

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Nice job. Perhaps its being married 47 years but my wife and I need more than 42 inches to keep harmony all night. I ended up building a 54" collapsable bed that converts down to about 30 for a single which I just used on my solo trip to Death Valley. I like your simplicity and am sure it is pleanty strong for you both. 54 is a standard Ikea size too.
 

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I just removed my King bed platform because I have to haul some stuff, but I simply attached my bed to the 4 tie down points, replacing the D-Rings with, I believe, M8 screws. It was rock solid, as expected, since the tie downs are rated at 1,000#'s each. Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture to post.

I want to do something a bit more flexible in terms of cargo space since my van gets used for lots of different things.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yup, tie downs mounting would also work, but you'd need more support across the ends, so 2 x 6 construction for sure, maybe a thicker angle steel (12gs). I use my tie down rings, so I didn't want to lose them.

I have a 118" van, so there is only so much room between the rear doors and the pillars/slider. A custom support could be fabricated to wrap around the pillars, but you'd need to trim back the pillar covering which I didn't want to do.

My ultimate plan is to build a folding dinette, one bench on each side, a center table that drops and folds flat, the back support cushions cover the table to complete the bed, similar to some travel trailer convertible dinettes. SInce it's a custom, I'll have 4-5" foam wrapped in upholstery.

I just removed my King bed platform because I have to haul some stuff, but I simply attached my bed to the 4 tie down points, replacing the D-Rings with, I believe, M8 screws. It was rock solid, as expected, since the tie downs are rated at 1,000#'s each. Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture to post.

I want to do something a bit more flexible in terms of cargo space since my van gets used for lots of different things.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Nice job!! What size mattress will go on it? Full? Queen?
We have a spare full futon mattress that may work, though it's awful thick and heavy.

More than likely we'll pick up a compressible Ikea mattress, 4 or 5", $90-150, will serve dual purpose as overflow sleeping at the house.

It's a shame there isn't a mattress width between twin and full, 38" to 54" is a huge jump, esp with a queen being only 6" wider than a full.
 

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....cut....

It's a shame there isn't a mattress width between twin and full, 38" to 54" is a huge jump, esp with a queen being only 6" wider than a full.
You can often find 48X75 size (+/-) which they call 3/4 full.

I think it is now mostly an antique size, but also used in RVs as a double bunk.
 

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I got a hybrid foam pad off ebay, 4"foam/1"memory foam laminated together. Only needed to trim off 4" of width for a custom fit. Sleeps great!
 

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You might want to cut or drill some ventilation holes or slots in the plywood if you use the platform a lot. Mattresses need to breathe- even foam ones.
 

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We have a spare full futon mattress that may work, though it's awful thick and heavy.

More than likely we'll pick up a compressible Ikea mattress, 4 or 5", $90-150, will serve dual purpose as overflow sleeping at the house.

It's a shame there isn't a mattress width between twin and full, 38" to 54" is a huge jump, esp with a queen being only 6" wider than a full.
I have seen what is called short full mattress- 48 x 75. Only saw two of them. Google it.
 

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Nice job. Perhaps its being married 47 years but my wife and I need more than 42 inches to keep harmony all night. I ended up building a 54" collapsable bed that converts down to about 30 for a single which I just used on my solo trip to Death Valley. I like your simplicity and am sure it is pleanty strong for you both. 54 is a standard Ikea size too.
RD, I know you don't have your PM any longer but do you have, by chance, any pictures of your collapsible bed? I have been thinking I would like to do the same so when I travel alone I can carry my bicycle standing up behind the bed. I have measured and know I can fit it in there. I would convert down to 39" then back to 54" when traveling with someone. Or, if you have already had a discussion on this can you point me to it? I looked through all your discussions but didn't see anything. I would appreciate your ideas.
 
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