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16 / 06 / 2016
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DIY -

Making your own Bamboo Bed

This manual shows how to make a bamboo bed yourself with very simple hand tools and without the use of metal nails or screws.

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Which bamboo poles do you need?

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Which Tools Do You Need?

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Step 1: Drilling Double Holes in the Bamboo Frame A

Cut two 12 cm diameter bamboo poles to a length of 220 cm (one side of the pole should be cut just after the knot). Then drill two double holes through each of the bamboo poles. (A). The first hole must be drilled at 8 cm (where the knot is) and the second hole at 202 cm from the first hole (centre to centre). The holes should have a diameter of 7 cm.

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Step 2: Drilling a few holes in the Bamboo Frame A

Turn the bamboo poles 90 (A) and drill 4 single holes (so only through one side of the pole). Drill the first hole at 24 cm from the top (the side with the knot), and the other holes at 56 cm (centre to centre). All holes must have a diameter of 7 cm.

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Step 3: Make a Fish Jaw Connection in the B1 Bamboo Post

Saw a 12 cm diameter bamboo pole straight off at 105 cm (B1). Then saw off an angle of 45° on both sides of the post.

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Step 4: Make a Fish Jaw Connection in the B1 Bamboo Post

The second 45° cut is made as shown in the drawings below. The total dimension from point to point must be 88 cm.

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Step 5: Make a Fish Jaw Connection in the B1 Bamboo Post

To finish the bamboo fish mouth joint, the edges of the bamboo pole must be sanded or notched and the sharp points rounded off. All this is done to make the bamboo joint fit nicely when assembling the bamboo bed frame.

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Step 6: Drilling a Single Hole in the B1 Bamboo Post

Drill a 7 cm diameter hole in the middle of the longest side of the bamboo pole (B1).

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Step 7: Drilling double holes in the Bamboo pole B2

Drill two double holes through the two ends of the bamboo pole (B2). The holes must be drilled 8.5 cm from the ends and 7 cm in diameter.

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Step 8: Drilling a few holes in the Bamboo pole B2

Drill three single holes in bamboo pole (B2). The first and last hole at 30.5 cm from the ends, and one hole in the middle. The middle hole should now be 22 cm from the other holes (centre to centre).

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Step 9: Inserting the Bamboo Crossbars into the Bed Frame

Insert the 4 bamboo crossbars (D) in the previously made holes of the bamboo frame (A).

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Step 10: Assembling the Bamboo Headboard

Insert the two head end poles (E) simultaneously by (B2) and in the frame (A) as shown in the drawing below.

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Step 11: Assembly of the Bamboo Footboard

The bamboo pole with fish mouth connections at the ends (B1) is placed on the other side of the bamboo frame (A)or at the front of the bed.

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Step 12: Tightening of the Bamboo Footboard

The bamboo pole with fish mouth connections (B1) must be firmly attached to the frame (A). To keep the bed frame in the right position, it is advisable to clamp the bamboo pole using a sturdy piece of rope and a wooden or metal pin. This way you can tighten the frame until everything fits nicely. This is also a good time to cut away any excess material from the fish jaw joint (the points may partly overlap the holes).

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Step 13: Making bamboo dowels

To fasten all parts of the bed we need bamboo dowels. Take a piece of bamboo 5 cm in diameter and 25 cm in length. (I) cut the bamboo tube lengthwise with a knife, leaving 8 equal parts. These bamboo strips are used to make 20 cm long bamboo dowels, with a diameter of 1.5 cm on one side and 4 cm on the other.

It is important that these bamboo dowels have a conical shape so that they are firm but at the same time easy to insert. It is also very important that you leave the outer layer of bamboo on the dowels. This layer of 1 mm thickness possesses 90% of the strength of the bamboo. You will need at least 20 bamboo dowels for this bed.

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Step 14: Drilling dowel holes in the Bamboo frame

Make 8 holes of about 8 mm diameter in the bamboo frame (A). It is recommended to fix the 4 sleepers on one side before drilling the holes on the other side. If you do not secure one side immediately, the drilled holes may move slightly, making assembly more difficult.

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Step 15: Fixing the Bamboo Dowels in the Bed Frame

The bamboo dowels are hammered through the holes until they emerge from the bottom of the last hole. Once the dowel is firmly in place, you can saw off the protruding parts. Some carpenters apply a drop of wood glue before knocking the dowels into the holes, but this is not necessary to make a strong joint.

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Step 16: Making Fish Jaw Joints in the Bamboo Bed Legs

Make fish mouth connections in the bamboo bed legs as described in steps 3,4 and 5. The only difference is that one side of the leg has to have a fish mouth joint and the other side has to end in a knot (to prevent the bamboo from splitting). The bed legs must be 28 cm high on the longest side and 23 cm high on the lowest side.

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Step 17: Placing the Bamboo Bed Posts

The pieces of bamboo (F) are used as supports for the bed legs just like the bamboo uprights (E) of the headboard. Both serve to insert the bamboo bed legs (C) to slide for extra stability and sturdiness.

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Step 18: Fixing the Bamboo Bed legs

The bed legs are fastened with two dowels as shown in the drawing. The holes for the dowels have a diameter of 8 mm.

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Step 19: Drilling single holes in the Bamboo pole B3

Drill 3 single holes of 7 cm diameter in the bamboo pole from the foot end (B3). The first and last holes should be drilled 8.5 cm from the ends. The third hole is to be drilled in the middle of the bamboo pole at a distance of 44 cm (centre to centre) from the other two holes.

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Step 20: Placing the Bamboo Footboard B3

Place the bamboo plug (G) in the middle of the foot end (B1) and place the bamboo pole (B3) about it. The bamboo plug helps strengthen the bamboo bed frame.

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Step 21: Fixing the dowels in the Bamboo footboard B3

Drill 4 holes of about 8 mm diameter into the bamboo foot end as shown in the illustration. Drill the holes not exactly in the middle of the joint for extra strength. Insert the dowels and tap them into place. Then saw or cut off the protruding parts of the dowels.

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Step 22: Drill single holes in the head end B4

Drill 5 holes of 7 cm diameter in the bamboo pole of the headboard (B4). The first and last hole should be drilled 8.5 cm from the ends and the other three holes 22 cm apart (centre to centre).

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Step 23: Placing the Bamboo headboard

Insert the 3 bamboo uprights (H) in the bamboo bed frame (B2) and place bamboo pole (B4) on top of it.

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Step 24: Fixing the dowels in the Bamboo head end B4

Drill 10 holes of about 8 mm diameter into the bamboo headboard as shown in the illustration below. Drill the holes not exactly in the middle of the joint for extra strength. Insert the dowels and tap them into place. Then saw or cut off the protruding parts of the dowels.

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Step 25: Sawing off the Bamboo Frame

Saw off the excess material from the frame (A) and cover the holes with a round sheet of MDF or plywood. Draw the bamboo pole on a wooden plate and cut out the round plate with a seesaw. The wooden plate can then be glued to the end of the bamboo pole with wood glue. Alternatively, you can insert a bamboo knot in the bamboo pole for a more natural look.

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Step 26: Making a bamboo mat

Repeat these steps for 3 bamboo poles of 5 cm diameter and 190 cm length (J). Alternatively, you can also split bamboo mats use for the bed base.

1. Make some cuts on the outside of the bamboo knots (rings) to reduce the resistance of the bamboo stick.

2. Make alternate cuts in the adjacent internodes (hollow part of the bamboo stick between the rings) so that the bamboo does not split completely.

3. Make one long cut along the entire length of the bamboo stick.

4. Pull the bamboo stick open until you hear the knots break and you are left with a flat mat.

Step 27: Placing the bamboo mats

Place the bamboo mats on the crossbars and secure them with staples or Tie ropes. The outer layer of the mats must be visible on the top.

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Step 28: Dimensions of the Bamboo Bed

And that's how you make your own bamboo bed, now it's your turn!

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Source: Translated from Vctecbamboo

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