In order to build a decent bunk bed, you’ll need good quality bunk bed plans, unless you are a wizard of reverse engineering from photographs. Although it is comparatively a challenging project, I spent just 2 days building one, based on the plans taken off Ted’s Woodworking.
These are the exact plans I used for building a bunk bed, as well as a host of other woodworking projects.
I have no doubt that you can use these blueprints and put an awesome bunk bed in your bedroom in record time, by following the step-by-step instructions and prepare the materials based on the tool list and material list as detailed in the plans.
Before you begin your quest of building bunk beds for your house, there are some considerations you might need to think about, which will be listed below in the article. It will help with choosing the right bunk bed to build, based on your current needs.
Why do You Need a Bunk Bed?
This is the first question that should come to your mind. The most common reason is because of the increasing number of children in the household for whatever reasons (relatives moving in, newborns turning into kids soon, etc.).
It could also be you’ll be renting out one of the rooms or apartments to college students and you want to house a few of them who does not mind room-sharing.
Or you want your children to stay in a room instead of having individual room to themselves to forge a stronger bond between them.
Another possible reason is that you want to free up the space in the bedroom for storage, another piece of furniture, or letting the children have more playing room.
You might compare these reasons and weigh up the options. Also look at some of the loft bed plans available. You might need to decide between a bunk bed or a loft bed, based on your needs and preferences.
How long will the Bunk Bed be Used for?
This consideration will determine your wood selection, your painting, the styling, the amount of effort, and your finishing.
If you’re going to build a bunk bed for small children, you can opt for a softer wood and have a minimalist design without as much effort. This is because children will outgrow themselves in a few years and the bunk bed will then be obsolete and need to be disposed of. Children also put less weight on the bed so using a softer and a less expensive wood is justified.
For college students and grown-ups, you’ll need to pay more attention to the wood selection and your effort in the assembling process. The bunk bed needs to be much sturdier than those of children’s and they need to last. Almost always, solid hardwood is used, which is a tad more expensive.
It is recommended you gain some experience first, before building a bunk bed for adults because the risks are greater. Having said that, beginners can certainly build bunk beds that are sturdy and solid, if they follow proven and quality bunk bed plans to a T.
How to Choose a Particular Bunk Bed Style?
Being a minimalist, I try not to make my bunk beds too fancy. However, I too look at some of the bunk bed catalogues and wonder how did they design that… And I look at their price tags and not surprising at all, their costs are in the $1,000’s range and up.
I cannot justify the luxury of owning one.
As a rule of thumb, I build the bunk bed for children as one bed stacked on another with the ladder on the side. The upper deck must have secured rails on both sides. A good set of bunk bed plans will need to have these in specific details, to ensure the safety of our dear children.
For adults, I prefer to have the ladder placed at the foot, in order to allow for easier access for the one sleeping below. Adults need more space and having a ladder by the side may make one feel restricted and confined.
My Big Tips For Your Bunk Bed
What I like to do with my bunk beds is to build additional drawers underneath the lower deck to induce even more space savings. It is a great place to keep toys, stacks of paper, and anything you can think of. It should be fairly easy to set these up with the bunk bed plans recommended.
I also select the wood based on the ease of painting and finishing, if I wanted to theme the bedroom around something. This is especially useful for children who want their bedroom theme around certain cartoons that they love, as they are often in bright colors.
I will always position the bunk bed in the corner of the room, be it adults or children so that the risk of falling over is effectively minimized only to a single side. And for children’s bunk beds, a sturdy rail is always installed at the side that runs from the inside of the ladder to the foot of the top deck. I do that for the lower deck too, just for symmetrical look of the bed.
Mattress on the top deck should always be lower than the railings. I’ve seen thick mattress equaling the height of the rails being used that left me scratching my head, wondering what the parents are thinking. A fall down a bunk bed can potentially dislocate the limbs, and possibly worse.
Furthermore, I encourage you to install night light in the bedroom so that the ladder is visible at all times during the night. Children may need to visit the bathroom in the middle of the night and they need to be able to see the ladder to climb down safely.
Why am I Against Free Bunk Bed Plans?
When I was just starting out on my first ever woodworking project, I believed that I could find a set of free plans from the internet and start building furniture for the house.
Unfortunately, I ended up wasting my time and money on the project and the materials purchased, because the plans available for free were not only way off in the dimensions, but skipped through some of the crucial intermediate steps. I was a beginner at best, and a detailed step-by-step plan was sorely needed.
You’ll notice this regularly when you come across many of the free bunk bed plans available online, and I almost gave up on carpentry after a few failed attempts.
I had a turning point when I decided to purchase one of the most talked about woodworking packages, after reading through many positive user reviews about the product with hundreds of successful pictures of their finished projects.
I’m glad to say, my faith paid off and I managed to kick start my woodworking passion from then on. I completed various projects detailed in the massive collection of plans (16,000 of them) with minimal difficulties and my carpentry skills are improving with each project.
Since then, I haven’t looked at any free plans on the internet and woodworking magazines because I already have all the plans I possibly need.
So, if you’re still searching for free bunk bed building plans, I’d advise you to take a look at the product I purchased instead.