Make your pet a pawsome pet bed!

This bed is sized to suit a standard bed pillow – 600mm x 400mm.

Materials:

Meranti:

  1. 1 x 1.8m length of 44mm x 44mm for 4 – legged headboard – 310-320mm (tops are cut at 10° angle; 2 x 200mm legs for foot of bed.)
  2. 1 x 2.4m length of 44mm x 69mm rebated meranti for two ends 375mm and two 580mm sides.
  3. 1 offcut of 69mm x 22mm cut in a curve for the headboard.

Plywood:

  1. 1 x  600mmx600mm sheets of 3mm plywood, cut to 400mmx600mm as the base

Dowels:

  1. 18 of 8mmØ
  2. 2 of 10mmØ.

Fasteners:

  1. 2 x 6mmØ threaded 1m rods cut to approximately 680mm.
  2. Four 6mm dome nuts
  3. Four 6x20mmØ washers
  4. Wood glue

Finish of your choice – I used a gloss polyurethane sealer.

Method:

  1. The materials you will need.
    Dog Bed Image 1
  2. First measure off and cut the 69mmx44mm rebated meranti into two ends of 375mm and two sides of 580mm, and then from the 44mmx44mm meranti, two legs for the foot of the bed – each 200mm long, and two legs for the head of the bed. The latter have their top ends angled at 10°, to their length is 310/320mm.
    Dog Bed Image 2
  3. Using a mitre saw will ensure an accurate cut.
    Dog Bed Image 3
  4. We had a piece of 22mmx69mm meranti left over from an earlier project, so we cut it to 375mm and used three blocks and a steel ruler to create a curve for the top edge. Just make sure that the block in the centre really IS in the centre, or you will end up with an uneven curve.
    Dog Bed Image 4
  5. The headboard curved marked.
    Dog Bed Image 5
  6. And cut.
    Dog Bed Image 6
  7. Now for the dowels, set your 8mmØ drill bit stop to just over ½ of the length of the dowel and lock it in place with the locking screw.
    Dog Bed Image 7
  8. Mark the centre line of the top of each leg and drill two holes in each for the dowels.
    Dog Bed Image 8
  9. Insert an 8mmØ dowel marker pin into each hole, align the top of the leg with the top edge of the end and press it hard. This transfers the centre-point of each hole you drilled, to the other surface – but you HAVE to get it right first time. If you do not, the join will be out of alignment.
    Dog Bed Image 9
  10. Insert glue into each dowel hole and around it, insert the dowels and then clamp the foot assembly together as shown here.
    Dog Bed Image 10
  11. Always check, just in case – that the join is exactly 90° or whatever degree I might want it to be – you cannot make changes once the glue has cured.
    Dog Bed Image 11
  12. I repeated the dowel procedure with the headboard. This shows the curved top piece and its dowels.
    Dog Bed Image 12
  13. It was set back on the legs as shown here.
    Dog Bed Image 13
  14. A view of one end of the completed headboard. There is a gap of 80mm between the top of the edge and the straight bottom edge of the curved upper piece.
    Dog Bed Image 14
  15. Before assembly, I always sand down all surfaces – it is much easier doing it this way than sanding the completed unit. All that is needed at that final stage is a very light sanding, which is no hard mission to do.
    Dog Bed Image 15
  16. Now for the securing rods, drill a 6mm hole through each side of the headboard and foot assembly.
    Dog Bed Image 16
  17. The hole should line up with the very corner of where the horizontal rebated surface meets the vertical rebated surface – as shown here.
    Dog Bed Image 17
  18. I tapped the threaded rod into the holes drilled for it and trimmed it to just on 10mm as shown here.
    Dog Bed Image 18
  19. The dome nut and washer in place.
    Dog Bed Image 19
  20. This shows clearly how the threaded rod passes down the length of each side. The base actually rests on these rods and provides a little ‘spring’ to the base.
    Dog Bed Image 20
  21. This bed was designed to be disassembled if necessary. When this sort of thing is manufactured in a factory, much of the cutting and drilling work is controlled by computers, which means positions of dowels etc are aligned to the 10th of a millimetre, but we’re are just using the Mark 1 Eyeball, so there can be slight variations in dowel positions. So, the trick is to make sure that this bed when assembled can be assembled in one way only – and that is accomplished by having just one end of one side use 10mmØ dowels. Now the bed cannot be assembled in anything but the right way, with all joins matching up perfectly.
    Dog Bed Image 21
  22. The inner dimensions of the bed are 400x600mm so I cut the 3mm plywood base to 395x595mm and cut each corner by 25mm at an angle of 45° so that it would fit without jamming up against the inner corners of the legs.
    Dog Bed Image 22
  23. All the parts ready for assembly. If you look carefully you will see how each corner of the base has been trimmed at 45°, as mentioned above.
    Dog Bed Image 23

Final

The completed bed is sturdy and stable, and can be dismantled if necessary.

Optional hint…

Dog Bed Image Hint 1 Dog Bed Image Hint 2
Make those cushioning blocks stick-proof
You should always use cushioning blocks when clamping wood to spread the pressure but also prevent the clamp heads denting the wood’s surface. The problem is they can stick to the workpiece if any glue oozes out.

The trick is to wind a couple of layers of luggage tape around each block as shown here – no more sticking!

Panel:

These materials are available at Selected Mica Stores. To find out which is your closest Mica and whether or not they stock the items required, please go to www.mica.co.za, find your store and call them. If your local Mica does not stock exactly what you need they will be able to order it for you or suggest an alternative product or a reputable source.

Project guide
TIME: Three days
COST: R600
Skill: 3

Tools required:

Circular cut-off saw, jigsaw, cordless drill/driver, sander.