Raise a bed without a bedframe?
October 10, 2006 11:56 AM   Subscribe

I want to get the box spring and mattress off the floor without buying a bed frame.

My partner and I share a hand-me-down queen mattress and a wooden box spring. We're sick of sleeping so close to the floor, but we don't have the disposable money to buy a bed frame at this moment. Are four cinder blocks a viable alternative for raising the box spring and mattress off the floor, or would that put too much pressure on the center of the box spring? How can we get our bed higher (and possibly make some storage space beneath) while spending little to no money?
posted by sian to Home & Garden (31 answers total)
 
Splurge for the 5th cinderblock and put it in the center of the bed.
posted by Wild_Eep at 12:04 PM on October 10, 2006


you know, underneath, that is.
posted by Wild_Eep at 12:05 PM on October 10, 2006


The simple bedframe itself is cheaper than you might think. Stop by your local mattress dealer, and they should be able to sell you one for forty bucks or so. You don't need a headboard and footboard, which is where most of the expense comes in.
posted by Faint of Butt at 12:07 PM on October 10, 2006


You can get metal bedframes -- the kinds some mattress places give away -- for very cheap. Alternatively, you can duplicaste the finctionality of a metal bedframe for next to nothing. The cinder blocks will work fine. For structural stability, I'd put three along each side, and one in center of the bed. Top it off witha piece of plywood about the same size as the bed and you're set.
posted by pmbuko at 12:07 PM on October 10, 2006


Wild_Eep is right, you need something in the center.
posted by peeedro at 12:08 PM on October 10, 2006


2 - 3/4" plywood,
1 - 8' 4x4
2 - 6' 2x4
6 - 2x1

= bed box... or at least that's what I did. Not as cheap as cinder blocks, but not as expensive as bed frames.
posted by edgeways at 12:10 PM on October 10, 2006


Forget plywood. Most plywood comes in 4'x8' sheets, so you'd need two sheets that were both cut to half the bed width and the correct length. For the price of all this you could buy a metal frame from a matress store or a yard sale.
posted by peeedro at 12:13 PM on October 10, 2006


Where do you live? If you live in an area with an active craigslist community, you could probably find one for free.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 12:14 PM on October 10, 2006 [1 favorite]


Yeah, check Craigslist, Freecycle, or your local Salvation Army or Goodwill for a bedframe. You could probably get one for $10 or so, especially if you live in a college town where people move a lot.
posted by MsMolly at 12:19 PM on October 10, 2006


Your profile did not indicate where you come from but there are plenty of options for getting a free bed frame set including freecyle or even Craigslist Every municipality has ways of giving away material and recyling household items.

Another option is using shipping pallets which are always given away and free. You may have to stack more than two to get the height you want.

Good luck.
posted by jadepearl at 12:20 PM on October 10, 2006


Stack o' shipping pallets. It won't solve your storage issues unless you're clever, but you can't beat the price.
posted by lekvar at 12:20 PM on October 10, 2006


just about every thrift store i've gone in has a pile of those metal bedframes for sale for about $5.
posted by lester's sock puppet at 12:24 PM on October 10, 2006


heck, i've got one sitting in my garage now. it's yours if you pick it up.
posted by lester's sock puppet at 12:25 PM on October 10, 2006


Alternatively, you should be able to pick one up in the local paper's classified section. While you probably won't find a metal frame for sale itself, you should be able to find complete used beds for cheap or free, especially if there is a local college. If you find one, just throw away the rest (who would want to sleep in a used bed?).
posted by Willie0248 at 12:36 PM on October 10, 2006


Splurge for the 5th cinderblock and put it in the center of the bed.

Wild_Eep is right, you need something in the center.



what? why? normal metal bed frames only support the outer edges of the box spring. there is nothing underneath the center at all and they are just fine.

(in fact, i suspect the way a box spring works would actually be compromised by putting something under the center, but i'm not positive.)
posted by sergeant sandwich at 12:57 PM on October 10, 2006


For the shipping palettes, you might consider that they might not be suitable for indoor use due to insect infestation or chemical contamination.

My wife used to work for a plastics manufacturer and I asked her why they left the palettes that held their supply material out for the scavengers and she said that the suppliers wouldn't take them back for just those reasons.
posted by plinth at 1:08 PM on October 10, 2006


I've set up boxsprings with just four furnature feet, the screw-on sort used on sofas. They worked just fine for many years.
posted by bonehead at 1:16 PM on October 10, 2006


what? why? normal metal bed frames only support the outer edges of the box spring. there is nothing underneath the center at all and they are just fine.

sergeant sandwich, have you mainly had twin or full size beds? The queen and, I would imagine, king bed frames that I've seen come with a center cross bar and an extra support foot for the center of the bed. The one in my room right now is like this. I think what you're saying is true for the smaller bed sizes, though, because they might not have anything for a center support to rest on.
posted by MsMolly at 1:29 PM on October 10, 2006


You'll have better luck on craigslist if you search for bed RAILS. You should be able to get some for no more than $20, assuming you can't get them for free. Odds are if you post to the wanted to buy indicating you'll come get them you'll get half a dozen mails.
posted by phearlez at 2:13 PM on October 10, 2006


Yeah, for queen+ you need center support. I was kind of disappointed I had to buy a new bedframe when I upgraded to a queen-size mattress a while back. But it was like $50 and that was for the super-deluxe one. A regular one was like $30.
posted by kindall at 2:38 PM on October 10, 2006


I do the five cinderblock thing and it works just fine.
posted by puddinghead at 4:46 PM on October 10, 2006


I've always just had the metal frame that came with my mattress - instead of the headboard/footboard thing... It's not bad. Although, some of the plastic underbead storage boxes with bulkier lids are kinda difficult to fit (depending on the configuration of the metal cross bars).

Since you have a queen, if you go with the metal frame you might want to think about putting some boards inside the metal frame for extra support - thinner than 2x4's, but I hope you get the idea.
posted by youngergirl44 at 6:14 PM on October 10, 2006


My box spring has provision for screw-in legs at the four corners and halfway down the long sides. I'm voting for six cinderblocks.
posted by flabdablet at 6:19 PM on October 10, 2006


Four cinderblocks worked fine for my full-sized mattress and boxspring. A fifth probably would have helped. You can get a cheap bedskirt (five to ten dollars) for the boxspring so it doesn't look bare. I wrapped the cinderblocks in butcher paper and I thought it worked very well.
posted by halonine at 6:42 PM on October 10, 2006


Milk crates! Stagger the milk crates, leaving a crate sized gap between each. Use 'risers' to raise the crates off the floor a little bit (uniform pieces of wood, rubber floor tiles-- anything to give a little lift.) Add boxspring and mattress, then more milk crates between the ones supporting the bed. You can pull these out and use them for storage.

I had a milk-crate base for a futon in college that worked well. It was solid milkcrates (no gaps) on carpet, so there was no sliding around during any type of 'activity.' I would probably suggest putting down a rug or something if you have hardwood floors.
posted by natness at 7:16 PM on October 10, 2006 [1 favorite]


An additional comment about shipping pallets: I work in a warehouse and on at least three or four occasions I've seen pallets with the words "TREATED FOR PLAGUE" stenciled on the sides. So I don't think I'd want to sleep on these things.
posted by cropshy at 7:24 PM on October 10, 2006


Milk crates could work very well and do allow for convenient storage space under the bed. I would recommend more than the 6 milk crates that my girlfriend had under her bed which did not provide enough structural support for our passionate collisions. Oh, and put a sheet of plywood on top of the crates, too.
posted by fieldtrip at 10:10 PM on October 10, 2006


Truck springs, for bouncy fun!
posted by tomble at 10:56 PM on October 10, 2006


Milk crates could work very well and do allow for convenient storage space under the bed.

No they wouldn't provide convenient storage space, because you want them facing up or down as they're stronger that way than facing sideways. But yeah, more than six.
posted by kindall at 11:55 PM on October 10, 2006


Follow-up: I hadn't heard of freecycle before but I did a little googling and joining. I posted a Wanted for a bed frame and this morning I woke up to find someone who has one and will deliver it to me!
posted by sian at 6:21 AM on October 11, 2006


This new bedframe costs $29,99.
posted by iviken at 9:01 AM on October 11, 2006


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