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Bed's done! Sort of.

March 22nd, 2017 at 04:47 pm

Great news. I finished my bed today. Mostly. You'd think adding "table legs" would be simple, but because they have to support my entire body weight, I had to spend a lot more time and materials to make sure they were strong enough to do so.

Also, it doesn't help that a vehicle has so many weird curves that I have to work around. Every leg is a custom job, and that means having to lift the entire heavy board into the car, fit it, measure it, and pull it back out, install the leg, and put it back in to check the fit. The following picture is a good example of this.





However, by the end of the day, I finally did it, and decided to add the mattress to get a better idea of the end result. I hope you find this as hilarious as I do, because... I mean look at it. It's bonkers.



What I find particularly funny about the next picture is that I had to remove my arm rest to fit the mattress. Not having it was a bummer, but now, I can just use the corner of the mattress as my arm rest. Yes, I tested it out, and it's glorious.



Equally glorious is a bit of gymnastics I have to employ in order to transition from sitting in the driver seat to lying on the bed, and back. It's just too much fun... omg this would be insane if someone caught me doing it. Also, I have to learn to do it right so I don't accidentally hit the horn with my feet. It's weird talking about all this as a grown man haha.

The bed frame isn't technically done yet though. The next and perhaps final step is to apply coats of non-toxic sealants to the wood to protect against moisture and rot. It's an important health issue to address, and hopefully will give it a nice shiny sheen to it as well.

Oh yeah, and I am debating if I need to get a belt sander to sand it down. The surface is rough, but I wonder if I can just roll with this?

5 Responses to “Bed's done! Sort of.”

  1. PatientSaver Says:

    You've done a great job designing that to fit perfectly in there. I know I couldn't do that. I would think you'd want to sand as wouldn't bed sheets or blankets tend to snag on rough wood edges?

    I am more interested in how you came to making this decision although I know you had an interest years ago. And what your current thoughts are about how this new lifestyle will work. I'll have to catch up on your posts!

  2. ceejay74 Says:

    Pretty impressive! Are you going to try and store all your worldly possessions in there as well, or will you have a storage locker?

  3. Tabs Says:

    Patient, you are right. That's what I think too. I'm just dragging my feet because buying a belt sander is like $50 extra I have to shell out... but yeah... I should do that and ideally get it done before the end of the day.

    As for deciding to do this, as you already know, I indeed have had an interest in doing this for a while. I mean, who doesn't ideally want to be able to travel from time to time, and do so cheaply? However, it wasn't until I have owned my house now for a good year now, did I realize that this just isn't working for me. Even if it's paid off, I am still shouldering utility bills, HoA fees, insurance, and property tax, and that's before any other maintenance costs I haven't thought of.

    Yes, I know most people pay way way more than I do, including mortgage or at least rent. And yes, most people correctly perceive that a house is a necessary expense in life.

    Well, but what if it isn't... for me at least? What if I can figure out a way to live so that I may never have to pay for a house again? I want to try that. This is my primary motivation. A lot of vandwellers do it to travel and indulge in their sense of adventure. I have nothing against that, but my primary motivation is to hopefully but substantially cut down my cost of living. That said, the two overlap quite a bit, as I too can travel from time to time (and will have to for summer, which I'll elaborate later), and other VDers do travel fairly cheaply compared to the jet set Aspen skier types.

    Ceejay, no, that would be physically impossible. I am only going to carry what is needed to hopefully live in this vehicle full-time. That's the goal. And that alone will be quite enough of a challenge as it is. By extension, it will also challenge my sense of austere minimalism.

    The rest of my stuff, I am going to store the rest at my parent's house. I still have a room there whenever I stop by, and I will still need to stop by anyways, if nothing else to wash my laundry. My current plan is to stop by only every other week, but again, we'll see how it works out in practice.

  4. LuckyRobin Says:

    I don't think a belt sander is your best choice. An oscillating sander would be better. The low end ones cost $40. But do you know anyone who has any tools that you could borrow it from instead?

    I am getting a real kick out of reading about you doing this, though I don't think I ever would have gone smaller than a van myself as the sheer amount of minimalism would be very difficult for me in a car that tiny.

  5. Tabs Says:

    Hi, LR. Nice to hear from you. You are absolutely right that an oscillating sander would be the right tool for the job (especially for those pesky curved sides). However, I don't have a workbench, and I would still need something to sand the flat top of the frame... just because this thing will be in a car and be constantly bumped around by the road.

    But yeah, I've looked into it a bit more and agreed that a belt sander would be a bit overkill, and I might also get in trouble with it. So I eventually ended up going with just a palm sander instead. Small, light, easy, cheaper, and was quite adequate for my needs. The end result is far from perfect, but it's good enough for me.

    I am glad you are enjoying this. Makes documenting this process much more fun even for me. And yes, most people do indeed go with at least a minivan or cargo van or higher. This is extremely tight.

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