If you have kids that share a small bedroom, than building a bunk bed might be a good solution. In limited space, instead of having two beds that take up most of the space in a room, bunk bed gives more room for kids to play around. Few years back I built this bed for less than $400 of material.
For more photos and information, visit The DIY Plan
Tools for this project
• 4x4x8' (x4)
• 2x4x8' (x10)
• 2x3x8' (x5)
• 1x4x8' (x24)
• 1x6x8' (x1)
• 1x4x6' (x12)
• 4'x8' Plywood 1/4" thick (x1)
• 4'x5' Plywood 1/4" thick (x1)
• 4'x5' Plywood 3/4" thick (x1)
• Finish Nails
• 2 1/2" Pocket Hole Screws
• 1 1/4" Pocket hole screws
• 2 1/2" Wood Screws
• 1 5/8" Wood Screws
• Wood Glue
Note: Lumber dimensions are listed as nominal size. See lumber sizes for actual dimensions vs nominal.
Disclosure: Some of the links on this page as well as links in “tools for this project” and “material list” sections are affiliate links.
Main Post Supports
First cut 4 main post supports that would be placed at each corner of the bed using 4x4. Using a miter saw notch 1 1/2" deep sections in two areas of each post per provided dimensions. The notch will be used to insert 2x4
Cutting Chamfer Edges
Then take 1x4 and cut it to 16" long (x20). Using a table saw chamfer edges to 45°
Attaching Chamfered Boards
Now attached 1x4 (33" long) to 2x3 (33" long) using 1 1/4" screws. Make sure that 1x4 is 3/4" in from the backside of 2x3. This will allow you to place chamfered 16 long pieces flushed to the back of 2x3. Use nail gunto attached chamfered pieces to 1x4. The last 16" board will not fit so you will need to trim it.
Finishing Right Side of the Bunk Bed
Now attached these side rails to 4x4 support posts using 2 1/2" pocket hole screws. You're done with the right side of the bed.
Right Side of the Bunk Bed
Next we'll work on the left side of the bed. Take 2x4 and cut it to 33". Also cut 2x3 to 16" long and 15 1/2" long.
Building Rail for Right Side of Bed
Similar to steps 3, we're going to cut 1x4 to 16" long with chamfered edges (x4). Also cut 1x4 to 14" long (x2). Then similar to step 4, assemble all pieces together
Building Shelves for Right side
Now we will work on the shelf. Cut 1x4 to provided dimensions and assemble it using nail gun with finish nails. Make sure that corners are 90°.
Back Cover for Shelves
Then cut 1/4" plywood to 34 1/2" x 33". Place it on top of the shelf and attach it using nail gun.
Finishing Right Side of Bunk Bed
Now attached the rail to 4x4 support post so that 2x4 is just below the upper notch. Then attached the shelf below the 2x4 using nail gun.
Now we will work on the front rail. Take 2x3 and cut it to 72" (x2). Using table saw, rip it so that its 2" wide. Also take 1x4 and cut it to 72" (x2). Now similar to step 3 cut chamfered boards to 16" (x21) and finish assembling it just like step 4. Do not attach it to 4x4 post yet, we will do that later.
Building Widow Frame
This step is optional if you want to build a window. For this step, take 2x3 and cut it to 28" and 39 1/2" (x2). Then take 1x4 and cut it to 28" (x2). Drill pocket holes as show on a picture and assemble together. Make sure that both 1x4s are attached 3/4" lower from the back side of 2x3.
Chamfered Boards Around Window
Now take 1x4 and cut them to provided dimensions and chamfer each board just like step 3. Then place these boards into the frame you built from step 11 and attach it using nail gun.
For this step we will be making the stairs. Take 2x4 and cut to provided dimensions. Assemble together using 2 1/2" pocket hole screws.
Finish Steps Frame
Now we will cut upper boards for the stairs. Cut 2x4 to provided dimensions and assemble using combination of 2 1/2" deck screws and 2 1/2" pocket hole screws.
For this step we will cut 3/4" plywood and place it on top. Then cut 1/4" plywood and cover the sides. Use nail gun to attach plywood. The stair area that are against the bed do not need to be covered with plywood. If you prefer, the plywood could be covered with carpet.
Attach Right and Left Side Together
Now since we have most of the major pieces assembled, we will start putting the bed together. Take 2x4 and cut it to 79" long (x4). Take the left and right side of the bed and slide the 2x4 into the upper and lower notched area of 4x4 support post.
Attach Shelves to Post Supports
Then take the lower shelf and attach it to 4x4 post using deck screws. The lower shelf goes right under the 79" long 2x4. Similar to lower shelf, attach upper shelf using deck screws and place it 3 3/4" from the top of 4x4 post.
Install Front Rail
For this step we'll attach the front rail using 2 1/2" pocket hole screws. Make sure that the front rail matches elevation of the side rail.
Fasten Window Frame
Then attached the window section using 2 1/2" pocket screws for upper attachment and deck screws for lower.
Install Mattress Supports
Now take 1x4 that is 6 foot long and cut them in half so that they are 36" long. You will need 24 pieces that are 36" long. Take 12 of these boards and spread them out on 2x4 on the lower bed, then 12 boards on the upper bed. They will need to be 2 3/4" apart. Cut 2" x 1 1/2" blocks and place them between the 1x4 boards. Use nail gun to secure them to 2x4. This will prevent boards from sliding.
Take 1x6 and cut it to 41" and attached it to 2x4 using wood screws.
Finally slide the stairs next to the bed, put mattress in and you're done with this bunk bed.