Friday, 29 March 2013

Kura bed to loft bed hack

Materials: Kura Bed, 3x2 Wood

Description: Please note, make sure you use strong enough fixings to secure the bed to the wall, if you are fixing to a plasterboard/drywall wall you will need to secure it to the studs, DO NOT SECURE IT TO THE PLASTERBOARD!!!!!!

I did this hack with the bed fully built and on my own, but you could modify it in pieces if you find it easier, and a second person would help make it easier, this took me about 3 hours but would be quicker if I had a second pair of hands. This need to be done in a corner of the room as you need 2 sides supported.

You will need.
1 x Kura Bed
1 x 3m length of wood (about 3" x 2"€)
Some suitable wall fixings and screws, and some basic tools.

1. Saw through the 5 upright supports just below the main bed section to leave the top part of the bed with the slats in place, if you're careful and use a hand saw you can saw all the legs and the bed just rests on top of the frame, the cuts should be flush with the bottom of the main bed section.

2. Lift off the top part of the bed and put to one side.

3. Take apart the remainder of the lower frame and ladder and put all the pieces to one side, making sure you know which parts are the original ladder treads.

4. Decide how tall you want the bed to be, I made the bottom of the bed 1.7m from the ground, (we have high ceilings) this is about as tall as you want to go, but you can go lower if you want, using a long level mark a straight level line along the wall at the height you decide the base of the bed to be (mark the longest side)

5. Cut a piece of your 3x2 wood to the same length as the bed (about 2.1m) I cut a slight angle on the exposed end so it looked nicer and less chance of hitting the corner with you head.

6. Pre drill about 6 pilot holes in the wood at regular intervals.

7. Hold the wood up to your line on the wall (this is where a second person would be helpful) and then using the pilot drill, drill through each hole so it marks the wall behind.

8. Now depending on the wall type either drill and fix wall plugs or if it'€™s a stud wall just pre drill a pilot hole. (An SDS Plus drill will give a nice accurate hole in solid walls, a hammer drill is rubbish and normally makes an oval hole, and takes 5 times a long to drill it)

9. Screw 6 screws part way into the wood so they just stick out the other side this will help line up the wood on the wall, offer it up to the wall and screw it on, check it'€™s nice and strong by hanging from it, if it moves you need to brush up on your DIY skills, ask your wife for some tips.

10. Repeat above steps for the shorter piece of wood to go along the other side, the left over piece of 3x2 should be the correct length already and has the correct angle on it as well.

11. Next you need to lift the bed up to the new wood supports and prop up the other side near where the ladder will be, I used an adjustable plasterboard prop to hold it up but a piece of wood will do, using a level get the bed nice and level and then prop it up.

12. Next take the two long pieces of wood from the base of the bed you disassembled earlier, this will form the new sides of the ladder, these will have a dowel in each end, find a small piece of the base which you can use to make the first run of the ladder, this goes flat on the floor so will be wider than the rest of the steps, you need to fit this piece temporarily to get the correct height (see photos of the ladder to see what I mean) once you have this in place offer it up to the bed and using a level check it is vertical and then measure and mark the height and cut it, repeat for the other side. (The ladder goes from the floor to the very top edge of the bed, its screwed to the front edge in order the make the bed more secure, and not fitted flush like it was originally, if you don't do this the side of the bed that stops you falling out will be too flimsy)

13. Once you have both sides cut you need to make the steps, you will have two steps from the old ladder to use as a guide to get the correct length, but you will need 2 or 3 more depending on the height you made the bed. Try to keep even spacing between the steps and keep the gap the same as the original ones to make climbing the ladder safe, this gap size was set by IKEA for a reason, best not to alter it.

14. Next is probably the hardest part, I cut the steps to length using the two originals as a guide, and then drilled holes in each for the dowels, if your careful you can re use some of the original holes and therefore use the original bolts and fixings for most of the steps, if you can’t use the original fixings just secure each step with 2 screws each side to stop it twisting, pre drill holes to avoid splitting the wood. I only had a few that I needed to screw.

15. To mark the step gaps out on the 2 uprights lay them side by side and then using a tape measure and square mark both pieces at the same time, then they will all line up.

16. Secure the steps to the ladder.

17. Once the ladder is built offer it up to the bed, check its still level then clamp the ladder to the bed and secure with 6 screws (3 on each side) you can also add some L brackets to the back of the ladder where it joins the bed if you want, I didn't but may do so in the future for peace of mind.

18. Now make sure the bed if fully pressed into the walls on both sides and secure it to the wooden wall supports by drilling some angled pilot holes from below, then you screw through the 3x2 at an angle so it also screws in the bed frame, do this about every 30cms on both edges.

19. All done, make sure it's sturdy, mine doesn'€™t move at all, even with me climbing the ladder, it's much stronger that it was originally, now settle to down to a nice dinner of meatballs and gravy, with added horse for flavour.

The desk below is all Ikea as well, Vika Amon tops secured to Besta shelf units on legs and a few Lack shelves.
Top tips for wood working and fixing screws is buy a cordless Impact driver, one you have used one of these you will never want to use a cordless drill again for putting in screws.

~ Mark, Essex, UK

Kura Princess Bed

Materials: Kura bed, Tounge and Groove Cladding, Decorative mouldings, MDF, Joist Hangers

Description: Daughter wanted a princess bed so after seeing some other Kura hack, the "Geek with power tools" thought lets go.

Got the bed frame off eBay and then proceeded as follows :

!!SAND EVERYTHING before you build it.!!

#1 Build the frame with only the 3 NON ladder corners.

#2 Take the two bed lengths post and fix in place where the ladder would go. These act as the ladder and support for the floating side of the bed.

#3 Measure and fix 6 joist hangers on the wall where the long side will sit, and 4 for the head end of the bed.

#4 Lift the bed onto the joist hangers and tweak your levels.

#5 connect the post now sticking into the air with 45mm / 45mm timbers.

#6 Construct the roof by adding 45 degree timbers mitred into a rail on the wall.

#7 Clad the roof

#8 Clad the side panels using T&G and fixing with GRIP fill and clamps.

#9 Add mouldings around the exposed frames.

#10 Paint and stand back to admire :-)

~ Matt Williams, United Kingdom

12" Depth Bathroom Vanity

Materials: 4 AKURUM Wall Cabinets, LILLÅNGEN Sink, RÖRSKÄR Faucet

Description: My customer needed a shallow bathroom vanity to increase the available space in her bathroom for her disabled mother.

Cost was also an issue.

I used 2 full length AKURUM wall cabinets (12" depth) and 2 smaller over the refrigerator type AKURUM cabinets to create a hanging vanity. Also to allow airflow from a poorly placed heating vent.

The top is made from tha same mosaic tiles I used for the shower floor. (She needed a zero entry barrier shower due to her wheel chair)

Total cost for the vanity was:

Sink $93.00
Faucet $43.00
Cabinets: $130.00
Doors: $94.00
Handles: ~$20.00
Tiles: 8sqft @ 4.20 = $34.00
Misc : $25.00

Total: $439.00

That is the retail price, although I picked most of this stuff up in the ASIS section, it ended up costing me about $280 and some effort.

~ Lord_Piot, Ottawa, ON, Canada

Monitor stand with Ribba photo frame legs

Materials: EKBY JA„RPEN shelf, RIBBA frames

Description: Dual monitor stand, or desk shelf.

1. Remove packaging from items
2. Remove the stand and matt paper from the photo frames
3. Choose four screws that are not so long they will push through the edge of the shelf.
4. Place shelf (top down) on workbench
5. Place a photo frame at the end of the shelf with glass side facing away from the shelf, and long side against the shelf. The frames are slightly shorter than the width of the frame. I consider this a design feature to accommodate cables, or you can use the space to brace it with some MDF if you need to put heavier items on the shelf.

6. Hold the frame firmly in place (a helping hand is useful) and drill on a slight angle down through the photo frame into the shelf at two places.
7. Insert the screws into the holes and tighten.
8. Repeat steps 5-7 with the other frame at the other end of the shelf.
9. Choose two photographs and insert them into the frames and replace the matt paper and stand.
10. Flip the shelf over to stand on the frames.
11. Admire your handiwork

See more of the monitor stand.

~ Peta Hopkins, Gold Coast, Australia

Custom Expedit

Materials: Expedit 4x2

Description: First of all I decided to hang my Expedit, in spite of Ikea's advise (the say NO for hanging Expedit). I made additional supporting beam under it (one of the pics shows this).

The second, I bought and customized standard doors and chests for Expedit, in the way they correspond to my room decor. Here is you can see navy-blue painted and varnished door, two chests covered with fabric and varnished and the last door made with the 100-year-old music sheet (decoupage technique. I also added open-close mechanism from Besta.

~ Masha, Poland

Thursday, 28 March 2013

Black and white Stolmen Cat Tree

Materials: IKEA Stolmen storage system (post and fixtures)

Description: Here is our version of the "Stolmen" cat tree. We were inspired by pictures we saw on this website. We bought the post and fixtures and built our own shelves to reduce the cost. We gave the shelves the shape we wanted and painted them in white.

We made a hole for the post and fixed the carpet in place with little nails. We wanted our cats to get more vertical space and we thought that in front of the window was the best place for them. They can look outside higher than ever! We love the clean lines of this tree, we still get plenty of light even if it's right in front of the window. It is really well integrated in our decor which was important for us since it's in our living room.

~ Sabrina, Quebec city, Canada

9€ IKEA Verner Panton Flowerpot

Materials: IKEA blanda blank diameter 12 cm and 20 cm

Description: How to create a lamp that looks like the Verner Panton Flowerpot using 2 IKEA Blanda bowls:

- Drill a 10 mm hole in the centre of a 20 cm IKEA blanda blank bowl
- Mount a light bulb socket.
- Create some structure that will keep the 12 cm bowl. Use whatever you have lying around for this task. I used an old biscuit can that I cut up and made the hooks. These hooks are glued in place, 3 in the 12 cm bowl and 3 in the 20 cm bowl. This system allows you to change the light bulb.

In the present form, the lamp does not let out a lot of light. The inside of the bowls can be painted white to improve this.

Thanks for reading and happy hacking ;-)

~ Jacob Lawaetz, Denmark

Princess Storage Without the Princess Price Tag

Materials: APA storage box

Description: Lately I have been drooling over the very expensive, and very few dress up storage garment racks on the market, but I didn't want to spend $200 on furniture we'd only use for a few years. Meanwhile, I'd already been using an Apa storage box for dress up clothes when one day I realized, it might work great with a rack built-in!

The construction is simple- I screwed two 3-foot long 1x4's into the inside panels of the toy box. Then I cut a dowel and screwed it between the two lengths of wood. Easy peasy! I used some pink hangers from the dollar store to add some cohesiveness (I like matching hangers) but didn't need to paint, since the toy box also has unfinished wood trim.

Now we hang clothes on the rack and store purses, shoes and hats below. It takes up no more room than our toy box was taking, and makes for easy dress-up!

~ Sarah, United States

Hova goes Honeycomb

Materials: Hova armchair (1993, discontinued), painters tape, paint, fabric medium

Description: My aunt gave us an old accent chair she no longer had room for. It was 20 years old and from Ikea. My initial idea was to make a new cover out of a fun patterned fabric. The problem? I don't really know how to sew, so I'd either have to learn, or ask someone for help. My next idea was to dye it. That posed another issue: it wouldn't be patterned, something I think is severely lacking in the living room.

So I decided to try my hand at stenciling the slipcover with paint. I had already done something similar with a rug and I loved the results, plus I figured if it didn't turn out okay this time I could sew a new cover eventually. After checking out other armchairs out there I settled on a hexagonal design. My idea was to tape off all the areas I wanted to leave as-is (the lines between the hexagons) and leave the hexagons bare so that I could paint them.

I started in the middle of the armchair, and with painter's tape, I taped around a cut-out hexagon. I moved it around and continued to tape, tape, tape.

Once all the lines between hexagons were taped off, I started painting. The best thing about using the painter's tape method is that you can use a roller if you taped off everything properly. I used normal latex paint mixed with fabric medium. Unfortunately one coat of paint wasn't enough in most places so I had to do two. Once it was dry I sprayed it with Scotchgard to protect it a bit.

The verdict? Well, to be honest, I'm not sure. I really like the design, but the paint has more texture than I expected. I only spent 10€ on this - and I have half a can of paint left over. So, maybe eventually I will decide to reupholster it properly, but in the meantime, I can totally live with this.

See more of the stenciled armchair.

~ Ainhoa

Kitchen cart with folding extension

Materials: IKEA cabinet of unknown name, 1/4" X 1 1/2" wood, 1/2" X 1 3/4" wood, 3/4" X 2 1/2" wood, wood glue, some hinges, hacksaw

Description: I started with this kitchen storage cabinet from IKEA, whose name I don't know. The top was originally a single piece which was much wider than the base, overhanging in a way that always made it a bit awkward to place in the kitchen.

After some time, I decided to cut off the extending portion, but I didn't want to lose the 'counter' space it provided. So, I patched up the cut ends, screwed them back together with hinges, and added a support which slides in and out of the unit to either allow the extension to hang down, taking up less space, or stay up, providing the counter space occasionally needed.

The top is made of two layers of a thin paperboard with a paper honeycomb structure sandwiched between them. After cutting the extension off, I had to do something to hide the hollow top. I glued some 1/4" thin wood strips to each of the cut ends. I unfortunately used a wood that didn't quite match the finish of the cabinet - with some searching, I'm sure a better match could be found.

Using a couple of hinges, I connected the two pieces back together, minimizing the gap between them at the 'flat' position.

Next came the sliding support that would slide in and out of the base cabinet. It's shape is a long, narrow rectangle - two strong pieces of 3/4" thick by 2 1/2" wide wood connected at the inside end (the end that would be hidden inside the base cabinet) with some of the same wood, and on the outside end with a piece of 1 3/4" wood. I carved a groove in the outside end piece, forming a handle to make it easy to pull out the support with one hand.

Once this was built, I cut grooves in the base cabinet where the support would slide, centering them nicely and being careful to make them exactly 3/4" deep (matching the thickness of the slide) depth, so that the hinged end piece would stay up tightly when extended. With the grooves cut and the slide put in place, the top went back on.

Finally, I built a small support to hold up the long slide when retracted, and which also serves as a stop preventing the slide from pulling out too far. It also keeps the slide aligned, so that it slides in and out smoothly. It's mounted to the underside of the cabinet top, using a couple of screws mated to keyholes I cut in the thin top material.

It's not the prettiest looking thing, but try as I might, I haven't been able to find something better looking that matches the functionality this provides, and which also has the perfect dimensions for whichever kitchen I put it in (3 so far). I plan to make a sort of slip cover, maybe with a zippered front, to hide the contents and hopefully give it a better look.

~ Adam, Toronto

Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Reincarnated Rolling Shoe Storage

Materials: Various shelves and bookcase sides from the as-is section at Ikea, MDF trim, casters, wood screws and L brackets.

Description: I used various shelves and bookcase sides to build a rolling shoe storage for our newly built mudroom bench.

1. A circular saw was used to cut the boards to desired length. Due to the laminate finish of the boards, a ten inch blade with sixty teeth was used.

2. Drawers were assembled using 1 3/4 wood screws and L brackets.

3. Non swivel casters were added to bottom.

4. Decorative trim was added to the front face of the drawer.

5. Front of drawer needed to be painted to match mudroom bench.

6. Tyda satin nickel handles were added. These were found at the as-is Ikea section for .99 cents.

7. Put shoes inside and roll drawer underneath bench seat. :)

See more of the rolling shoe storage.

~ Julie @ Being Home

Fairy princess treehouse: KURA Bunk Beds with STUVA storage

Materials: 2 Kura beds, 3 Stuva drawers 60x35.

Description: Needed bunk beds for my twin daughters but already had a Kura bed that my son had been using. Decided to buy another Kura bed second hand and essentially used one complete and the base of another. In order to add storage, raised the height of base bed to accommodate 3 Stuva drawers that provide good deep storage. Both sections are fixed together with 6 coach bolts.

Both my daughters struggled with the built in stair so made a new ladder from wood taken from the 'help yourself bin' outside IKEA.

My wife added some wall stickers we bought from next.

We are calling it their fairy princess tree house.

~ Chris Kennedy, Innerleithen Scotland

How-to: Make a replacement Samtid lamp shade

Materials: board, cutting tool, patience

Description: The Samtid floor lamp is a beautiful design, and will last for many years. Sadly, the skimpy plastic shade that comes with it disintegrates after two short years, and Ikea does not sell replacements. It doesn't matter if sunlight hits the shade, it doesn't matter if you used a low-heat compact fluorescent. They just fall apart. DO NOT throw that base away. Here is a template to make your own replacement shade.

Print out the pdf on regular old letter sized paper. Your printer may cut off the edges of the images; don't worry, just print out at 100% size. Tape the pages together according to the indications. Tape onto your Bristol board, card stock, or sheet plastic. Cut out on lines, "weave" tabs together, and attach to your base. The template includes the original shade, and also a slightly taller and (I think) much more graceful shape.

Years of extended life for a great but flawed Ikea product!

Download the pdf here.

~ Matthew Bird, Providence, RI