Way back in November of 2007 Susan and I built a pretty nifty bunk bed set for Leane and Richie’s two (at the time) Dudes. Solid 2×6 timbers, and an indestructible frame design have stood the test of time…
Yeah, time… Cadence, that little blonde haired guy sitting on the top bunk is now in first grade, and that other little screamer, Kingston, is five years old.
Oh, and wait there’s a third little dude, Duke. At 2-1/2 he’s all but outgrown the crib that he has been sleeping in. So we decided to add a third bunk to the set.
As you can see from that photo, space is at a premium in the Dude’s bedroom so this was gonna take some crafty design ideas. We considered lots of options, but in the end Leane had the winning idea. Lower the existing top bunk down a few inches and then add a third bunk above where Duke’s crib currently sits.
I scratched out this rough drawing, and then me and the Dudes measured everything in the room at least 3 different times.
At that point it was off to the store to buy a stack of lumber.
Just like the original bunk beds I started assembling the third bunk in my garage. I basically needed to build the whole thing, and then take it apart for transport.
As the pieces came together it became apparent that this baby was huge! I had to build the whole thing just so I could lay out the new ladder.
I was delighted with the way the ladder came out. Kingston and I used my iPhone app to get the exact angle of the original ladder (20.5 degrees) so I could match that on the new ladder.
As a slight upgrade to the new ladder (or Cadence’s ladder) I decided to rout out a small mortice for the stair treads to slide into. It made for a really clean, perfectly tight fit once it was glued and screwed together.
Once I had it all assembled we took it apart and Suzie applied a few coats of polyurethane finish. We bought a really nice mattress with a comfort top cushion for Cade’s new bunk. Yep, this was gonna be a 3 way switch. Each dude would be moving up to a new rack.
So with the bed all dissembled and loaded in our VW Camper van, Suzie and I headed down to the Dude’s house before first light. We needed to get this baby built and have everything cleaned up in time for most of the crew to go to the ballet later that day.
Leane had almost everything out of the room when we got there so we jumped right into removing the original ladder and lowering the original top bunk. The ladder would need to get trimmed down later to fit the new height of the bunk.
I got to say this project went super easy, thanks in no small part to having Richie and Leane there to help, and Grandma Suzie to help entertain the dudes (when they weren’t actually helping me).
Kingston was in and out of the operation all morning, and Duke was pretty much in on everything.
That’s my muscleman son-in-law, Richie holding up the world.
I’ll leave a blank space here____________________________________________ for the reader to fill in their own caption for this photo. (feel free to share that in the comments section below).
Under the watchful eyes of our end-users the assembly continued.
I did have a special little surprise in store for Leane. Many years before (in my past life as a SWAT guy) Leane was always eager to assist with our team training events. Among the many scenarios she helped with, I think we had the most fun with the maritime boarding operations. On one occasion our team was practicing boarding of a pair of derelict old tug boats that were moored in the Snohomish River.
Well, we both happened to notice a very cool brass plate affixed to the Captain’s stateroom door, and since the old tug was scheduled to be salvaged anyway…. we kind of “salvaged” that brass name plate. It found it’s way to an obscure place on a wall in our guest room. Until today!
I think Leane was pleasantly surprised with the re-purposing of our maritime treasure, and certainly Cadence approved.
Well that’s about it for this little project. Everything just dropped into place, almost as if we planned it.
Thanks for following along with our building project.