Monday, April 11, 2011

Fire Truck bed is DONE!

UPDATE - 3/5/2012 - Ana posted the plans on her site and on Facebook today!!!  For those that found their way over here via one of those, welcome and thanks for stopping by!  Here is the link to the NEW Fire Truck Bed plans on Ana's site, good luck and please share if you do build one! 

Fire Truck Bed Plans

I finally finished the Fire Truck bed over the weekend. The only thing left to do is wire up the lights, which will be done in a couple weeks with the help of a friend who is good at that sort of thing.

I took the plans for Ana's Playhouse Loft Bed With Stairs and modified it to the fire truck design I built. The fire truck bed is based on this picture I found online. As you can tell, I made some changes to the plans; the biggest being that I moved the stairs to the other side. Check out the links below for posts on step-by-step build pictures and notes if interested.  Thanks for looking!

After we get the lights wired, there will be a toggle switch by the steering wheel (pic below) to turn on the lights. Also will be adding 2 red beacon lights.

The "lights" & "grill" are made of wood and just painted. I used chrome spray paint for the grill and the bumper. The "23" is Hut's birthday so went with that for the truck number. I also bought diamond plate tape on eBay to use as a pinstripe.

This picture did not turn out very well, but I ordered these online and was able to customize the one with Hut's name and got one with Arkansas on it.

Had to get a Razorback to put on there of course! You can see some more of the diamond plate tape I used.

The stairs were the most challenging for me. I went back and forth on what kind of hinges I wanted to use and finally just went with the basic ones and getting them straight and lined up took some time. We plan to use the storage for his clothes, since we lost his dresser due to space. For the diamond plate, I bought 3 feet of diamond plate vinyl on eBay and just stuck it on there. Turned out great and was the look I was going for.

The magnet board.

I purchased the steering wheel off of eBay. It is for a outdoor play set, but with a little piece of 4x4 to mount it to, it works great. The siren on the right is taken from one of Hut's toy fire trucks and I built the box to hold the buttons and speaker. This is the wall by the stairs, I put a divider in the back stair so that we could put a little cubby that is accessible from the inside to put games, books, etc...
I found these firemen hats online. They have a light and siren, perfect accessory for the bed! I put up a couple hooks so they can hang up on the inside.

After the animals took over!

Overall, I am very happy with how it turned out. It took a while to build due to the sheer size, modifications, and weather kept getting too cold to go out and work on it. I would say we spent about $500 to build the bed with all the accessories.

I cannot thank Ana White enough for posting all the plans that she does on her website. Without it, this bed would not have been possible. I have looked online everywhere and cannot find anything like this of course, and the fire truck beds that I did find are not what I had in my mind. If you haven't checked out her site, please do, she has 100's of plans on there and maybe you can find something you would like to build!?

Thanks for looking!


Part I - Framing

Part II - MDF

Part III - Dry Assembly

Part IV - Accessories

Part V - Painting

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Monday, April 4, 2011

Firetruck Bed Part V - Painting

Painting took FOREVER!!! I used Frog Tape on the bed and it was the first time I have used that product and I was very impressed. I did the top portion of the bed white and the front portion and side window also. I did use the paint & primer in 1, but still did 3 coats on all the exterior, and 2 on the interior.

For the lights & blinkers, I painted them the white, red or orange color and then after they dried, taped them off and spray painted chrome around the edges. I used the chrome spray paint on the front bumper and the tire hubcap also.

Firetruck Bed Part IV - Accessories

For the "tire", I bought a table top from Lowe's and just cut off a little bit to make it flat on the bottom. I wanted to add some lug nuts, so I drilled out some holes and filled them with 1" bolts. My spacing was a little off, but I can live with it.

You have to have lights of course if you are going to have a firetruck bed! I got these at Wal*Mart, they are just trailer lights and my friend has a converter box that we are going to use to convert from car hook up to plug in. I put them on to make sure I liked their placement.

I originally bought this metal screen for the grill, but ended up doing some thing different, did not like the look of it once I had it on.

Here is my headlights and grill mock up. Just used scrap 1x1's and 1x4's.

Here they are in place with the bumper in too, that was scrap 2x6.

Hut already had the 2 red spinning lights on his other bed, so we are going to incorporate them into the new bed, just not sure yet, they have not been put on yet permanently.

You have to have a siren too of course! I searched high & low for a siren, and the only one I could find was in Hong Kong and did not want to risk that not being what I hoped, so we sacrificed one of Hut's toy fire trucks and I cut out the siren buttons & battery/speaker compartment.

I used scrap 1x1's to make a box to mount in the truck.

Firetruck Bed Part III - Dry Assembly

After getting all the walls complete, I was able to do a dry fit to make sure everything matched up. Hut was so excited that he was ready to start playing in it!

No stairs or trim yet on the pictures below.

Bucket on front.

Got the trim on, for this I just used cheap 1x3's since I was going to sand and paint them anyway.
Stairs are in.

Firetruck Bed Part II - MDF

The next step was to start cutting all the MDF wood. If you can get someone to help, it would be nice since the MDF 3/4 wood is really heavy! I managed, but had to do a 3 saw horse set-up so the pieces would not fall on the ground after they were cut.

I will be the first to admit that I was not looking forward to having to use a circular saw, since my previous experiences were not very straight, but I found this tool at Home Depot, and it is a must have if you are doing big sheet cuts.

I am not getting paid by them, but I would recommend this product if you attempt this and have a hard time staying on line.
It is just a long straight edge that you clamp down on the ends to make on long line that you cut up against. Made the big cuts very easy.

This is the back end of the firetruck/bed. Instead of doing 1x1's on this end, I closed it in with the intentions of making this a magnet board.

This is the front side, I did a little window in front for the "door" window of the truck.

The back side, instead of leaving it open, I went ahead and closed it in, we are going to put something on here, probably chalk board or white board.

I put a extra 1x4 on the back side along the seam between the MDF and the other 1x4 to make a stronger joint.

Firetruck Bed Part I - Framing

My son LOVES fire trucks, and truth be told, so do I! When I found the plans on Ana's site for the Playhouse Loft Bed I started to brainstorm on ideas to turn this into a fire truck design. After much google searching, I came across this fire truck as my guide. The main thing I changed from Ana's plans was that I used 1x4's instead of 1x3's on the frame. No particular reason to be honest, just thought it would be sturdier.

I started the project as the plans indicated. Below are pictures for the top portion of the frame for the front side of the bed. I used Kreg Jig on almost everthing.

This is where I started to change things, instead of doing 1x1's up and down, I did them at angles to mimic the ladder on the top of the fire truck.

It helps to have plenty of clamps!

This is the top portion for the front side, held in place by the Jawhorse.

This is the back side portion of the frame.

This is the front end of the bed, I left it open in the middle, I am putting a bucket on the front so I left an open space in the middle so he could access whatever is put in there.

Check out Part II