Crib size mattress toddler bunk beds

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I've been asked to post the plans or email them out. I will but with a strict warning:

BUNKBEDS ARE NOT RECOMMENDED FOR CHILDREN UNDER 10. (by some government agencies, I am not sure which one)

WHY: BECAUSE THEY FALL OUT. A good reason to pause.

I'd never advocate doing anything that might harm your child. But I know my kids better than "Mr.Smith" does. Before you think about building it, think about your kids. Are they crazy hyper maniacs who like to pretend they are super man and jump off the rails of your porch? If so, bunk beds are a bad idea, no matter how old they are.

I tried to think about all the possibilities when I made this bed.

What if he tries and jump out? With the mattress depth it is maybe 3 feet off the ground. I've seen them dive off the back of the couch, so 3 feet does not scare me. You can have it go lower. There is a good 1.5 clearance between the bottom of my youngest head and the upper bunk.

What if he rolls out? My child isn't a big "toss and turner", just in case, he is completely boxed in except at the foot. I guess if I wanted to, I could make some kinda door thingy so It would be like a crib of sorts. However, I think that would be worse than the bunk beds; the oldest might try and climb out.



The design was inspired by:

5 ft long, 30 inches wide and 5 feet tall (you can go about 18 inches lower, but thier head will JUST clear the bottom bunk"


Common Materials
1 inch screws
120 grit sandpaper
Cut List

(4) 2x4x60
(4) 1x6x60
(4) 1x6x30
(2) 3/8x3x51
(7) or (8) 3/8x3x60
(10) 3/8x3x30
(12) 3/8x3x28

Tape Measure
Speed Square
Safety Glasses
Circular Saw
Power Sander
General Instructions

Please read through the entire plan and all comments before beginning this project. It is also advisable to review the Getting Started Section. Take all necessary precautions to build safely and smartly. Work on a clean level surface, free of imperfections or debris. Always use straight boards. Check for square after each step. Always predrill holes before attaching with screws. Use glue with finish nails for a stronger hold. Wipe excess glue off bare wood for stained projects, as dried glue will not take stain. Be safe, have fun, and ask for help if you need it. Good luck!


Step 1

Add-on I had in mind

Step 2

Another add-on I was contemplating

Step 3

Step 4

Step 5

Step 6

I am unhappy because there ended up being a gap between the mattress support and the outside railing. My little one likes it because it is his cubby hole and my big one likes to throw things down it at his brother.

I haven't fixed it yet. However, I think. a 1x4.5x28 board would cover the gap. It would make it "prettier", it would upset my little one. I am thinking about adding it to the bottom of the top bed to create a cubby for the top bed.

Finishing Instructions
Preparation Instructions
Fill all holes with wood filler and let dry. Apply additional coats of wood filler as needed. When wood filler is completely dry, sand the project in the direction of the wood grain with 120 grit sandpaper. Vacuum sanded project to remove sanding residue. Remove all sanding residue on work surfaces as well. Wipe project clean with damp cloth.

It is always recommended to apply a test coat on a hidden area or scrap piece to ensure color evenness and adhesion. Use primer or wood conditioner as needed.
Help Improve This Plan

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Clarissa (not verified)

Sun, 09/25/2011 - 13:01

as a mom of 4 kids.. sorry no expert only in parenting I would say. LOL I love this idea, you did great, low to the ground and I love the way you blocked the whole side up so no way of him falling off. My almost 3 year old would love it. And It is great for small places, as for freak accidents like the one with the preteen who died there is a reason they call them freak accidents, And the only reason they don't want you putting kids on the top bunk if the fear of falling. Which you have taken care of. GREAT IDEA!

Guest (not verified)

Thu, 09/29/2011 - 11:33

I only have a tiny room for our two kids and have been trying to figure out how to pull off a toddler bunk without paying $1000 for one. My son is pre-school age, no longer a toddler and his sister needs a toddler bed. I'd love to do this for them and it's a shame that people can't judge the safety of their children anymore and need "professionals" and "experts" to dictate their every move.


Thu, 11/03/2011 - 02:33

I love this bed as I can see how to make the bottom into a play house type of fort. It is perfect for my 5 almost 6 year old son, he is special needs and doesn't want a bigger bed yet as he doesn't feel safe in them. Making the bottom into a fort for him and giving the top a tent top so that it is even less open is perfect for him. I am planing on making this for him for Christmas if I can come up with the wood. This is awesome. Thank you for the idea, we had been trying to figure out how to talk him into a twin bed and now we don't have too.


Sat, 11/05/2011 - 19:40

I like that the bottom bed is on the floor which brings the height of the top bed down. I worry about the kids falling out or jumping off, but with the height of the rails and the lower one on the floor it seems there is little to worry about.
Thank You for sharing, Kristen

Guest (not verified)

Thu, 12/01/2011 - 08:19

This is lovely! My twins at 2 could not be trusted in this. I already have trouble with them climbing their brothers bunk bed, but it would be a great way to reuse their mattress for a reading nook/fort! So fun! I will have to add this to my LONG list of things to make.

Guest (not verified)

Thu, 01/19/2012 - 22:34

Love It!! Kudos! I have been searching for this and I have been weighing the pros and cons on safety but fact is I let my kids play at playgrounds and my children also will jump off the couch every chance they get, but as their parent it is my job to teach them not to. So, will my kids end up in the Emergency room with a sprained or broken wrist? Probably. At some point, one of my kids will get hurt. It could be a bike, a slide, the kitchen table or a bed that causes an injury. If I do my job maybe we can avoid a serious injury, but I need to save space right now and I have a small three year old that I plan on sticking on the top bunk who will most likely fit in a toddler bed until she is seven. I am going to do my job, watch my kids, teach them life lessons and get one of these

Lilmrsmchenry (not verified)

Thu, 02/09/2012 - 08:34

Would you mind emailing me the plan for this? I would love to make this for my boy so I can use my youngest's crib for our newest addition when he/she arrives.

Lilmrsmchenry (not verified)

Fri, 02/24/2012 - 11:45

I just assumed you would have it since I had to use it to submit my comment. :) It is my user name at yahoo. I'd rather not spell it out. Thanks!

Guest (not verified)

Thu, 03/15/2012 - 20:32

I have two children and they share a room, that will hardly accommodate a twin bed. Thank you so much for sharing these plans I plan on constructing this bed with some alterations this weekend. Thank you again great idea. Also for those saying not to do it for safety reasons if you know your children and know they are not the type to try and use it for a launching pad then it should be fine the height is not that much higher than a crib. My oldest learned how to climb out of a crib at 1 therefore it could happen in a crib as well. Thanks again.