Building Your Own Bunk Bed

Filed Under (Interior Design) by Kayla on 21-03-2016

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Building Your Own Bunk Bed

If you are considering building a bunk bed, either for yourself, a family member or a friend, you may be hesitating wondering if the project is one too large for you. The last thing you want is bunk beds collapsing on top of users and the injuries that could cause.

DIY bunk bed

This is not an overactive imagination in action here, it is actually true that a lot of bunk beds are not as safe as they could be, and that includes ones bought from so called expert manufacturers. Over thirty six thousand people each year have bunk bed related accidents and injuries, most of which could have been stopped if some simple extra safety measures were taken when the bed was assembled. So if you are building bunk beds here are some tips on getting started and on how to make them safe.

Who is it for?

Make sure you are building them strong enough for who is using them. If only children are using them then the weight it needs to support can be less. But if adults might be using them too, perhaps getting in with the kids to read stories for example, then the support needs to be a lot stronger. Often people say the bunk bed is for children but then adults get in it anyway. If you are looking to build a murphy bed instead, check out this guide by Afcac on how to build a murphy bed with IKEA cabinets.

Safety concerns

As well as thinking about support there are other safety issues to be aware of and prepare for. Younger children will need a good set of strong guard rails in place, and they should be higher to prevent them from accidentally rolling out of bed. You also need to make sure how they get to the upper bunk is stable and secure, if it is a ladder it should not slide around, if it is stairs some non-slip strips so that they do not slip off them might be a good idea. Consider putting in a rail for them to hold onto as they go up and down depending on their age.


A few factors will affect how big you make your bunk bed. Building bunk beds means careful measurements of the space you have available and then thinking about who is using it. It used to be the traditional single over a single was the standard sizes but today you can get all kinds of mix ups. A lower double with an upper single, a triple single, a double and a double and so on.

Materials for building bunk beds

When building bunk beds yourself the usually material is wood but there are several kinds of woods you can use for a project like this depending on your budget, the look you want and how durable you want them to be. For example something like oak or cherry is very good as it is long lasting, but there are cheaper woods that can be used.

Building Bunk beds plans

A good idea is to get a solid set of plans before you do anything. When you start with a good set of bunk bed plans you can ensure you get the right equipment, materials, measurements and that the end result will be safe, comfortable and meet your expectations in terms of looks. Look for plans that set out the stages very clearly, have good detail to them and if you need it have pictures step by step so you can see how your project should be progressing.