Designing our campervan seating
The next step in the conversion is to design and build our campervan seating. I need to build two seating units on opposite sides of the vehicle. The larger of the two seating units will incorporate a pullout bed frame which when extended will lock onto the 2nd seating unit, creating a double bed.
Designing the campervan’s seating / bed needed a lot of thought as I had to take into account all the different variables, such as the width of the vehicle (this will be the length of the bed), the length and width of the cushions, the gap between the two seating units, under seat storage, and the strength of the bed pullout (as this will need to be strong enough to take the weight of two adults).
The caravan cushions that we were given on freecycle, were a good starting point for me when designing the campervan seating units; I used the width of the two largest cushions to determine the width of the two seating units. I decided to tackle the main pullout bed seating unit first, as this was going to be the trickiest to get right.
I think I have the design
After thinking long and hard about the design, I eventually came up with the pullout bed seating unit you see below. (Designed using Sketchup.)
The seating unit has a 50mm x 50mm timber frame, two 9mm MDF sliding doors which will give access to under seat storage, and 50mm x 25mm slats for the top bed pullout.
The top part of the seating unit incorporates the bed pullout, which will lock onto the second seating unit once it’s built.
Let’s start building
I was happy with the design and so without further ado, I got cracking and set about turning the 3D model into reality.
It took a while, but I eventually finished building the main campervan seating unit. (For safety reasons, the seating unit is firmly attached to the vehicle. It’s important that the seating unit (and all other fixtures) don’t move under sudden braking.)
Next, I cut two internal walls from 18mm MDF. The two walls are attached to either end of the seating unit. One of the walls is just behind the driver’s seat (left) and the other wall is part of the wardrobe (right).
As you can see from the picture below, I have built a shelf to brace the top of the two walls together. This will also provide handy storage.
The cushions in the picture are there just for reference, there is a long cushion that will need cutting down to fit perfectly.
The front of the campervan seating unit will be faced with 6mm MDF, which will then be painted. The top and bottom sliding door runners will be stained the same colour as the flooring, as will all the wood trim. I will also add two flush fit handles to the front sliding doors when I have time.
As you can see in the picture above, I’ve cut out another wardrobe wall which will also double as one of the toilet’s inner walls.
You may want to know how I cut the walls so they perfectly fit the contour of the vehicle? Well, I used a simple profile tool and hardboard templates.
Cost so far £400.00
Next > 2nd Seat | Bed | Table
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