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Create-A-Bed Murphy Bed: Day Six

After yesterday’s work, I have constructed all the pieces of the murphy bed! Yay! Now, I need to prepare the wall (by removing the baseboard) and prepare the floor (by removing my experiment with laminate flooring) and assemble the parts. I’m not going to get to the trimwork and painting before Monday, so those things will have to wait until next weekend (or whenever).

Also after yesterday’s work, I am the proud owner of several exotic and expensive drill bits.
I bought this drill bit:
Isnt it impressive?

To drill this hole:
It was a scary and noisy process.

But the fancy bit kept splitting the wood and seizing up, so I went with a regular one inch hole-borer bit. Wasted money. Dang. I drilled two one inch holes for the latches that keep the bed locked in an “up” position:
Opening the legs pulls the latch down.

As I was installing hardware into the side panels, the instructions told me to drill a 5/8 inch hole. My drill bit set went up to 1/4 inch, but that wasn’t big enough. Off to the store. I thought I’d save money by getting a 5/8 inch rasp instead of a full-blown drill bit.
It sort of grinds its way into wood.

But it couldn’t get a hole deep enough for my purposes. More wasted money. Dang. Back to the store to get the other drill bit. After leaving my instructions on a store display and going home, then going back to the store to get them, I finally got back to work and got the side panels done:
Left and right.

I almost stopped then, but building the “header”, or top of the cabinet, was really easy. It was just gluing and drilling pilot holes and putting in nails and screws. It went very quickly.
I think I will want some decorative molding of some kind.

I can’t decide if I want to spend my time prepping the room today, or shopping for a mattress. I’m so close to being almost finished!


  1. Elaine Royuk

    Can’t wait to see the finished project when we visit in June! You do need your own TV show to demonstrate all this prowess! Oh yes, Dad finished the taxes at 4:30 AM. Whew!!!

  2. Lauren

    Wow! Such detail! Such gumption! Such perseverance after the setbacks! Sheesh – I almost quit for you after the rasp part.

    On the last post you said you hoped these weren’t getting tedious – they are not! We love the play-by-play and I appreciate that you are being honest about the little troubles that come up now and then. Also, seeing that this is a project that cannot be completed in two hours, I am less likely to build my own murphy bed, so thanks for the life lesson. What do you charge for that? $500?

  3. Peggy

    So exciting!! And from the outside looking in, there really haven’t been any major problems…..which with such a big project, is amazing! Your hidden talents are endless!

    If I ever have a murphy bed in my house, my favorite part would be the painting of it, and decorating it inside & out!

    Btw: Couldn’t you return those drill bits?

  4. Carol

    Neither rain nor sleet nor improper drill bit shall deter the persistant bed-assembler from his appointed duties. The USPS should adopt your tenacity – they might not be in the pickle they’re in if they did.

    Now…do you need another week off to rest up from all your work over break? I’m tellin’ ya’: leaving that sword in the “wrong” place after chapel that one day could’ve helped ya’ out in this department. Take it from the…

    –voice of experience

  5. Joyce

    Looks great! Please let us know what this project costs for materials. Really want to do this.

    • Brad

      Hi Joyce! Thanks! This is exactly the reason I’ve been documenting my experience – so I could share it with others. I went looking for a blow-by-blow before I started, but couldn’t find one.

      I finished assembling the bed tonight. I will post about it tomorrow. I haven’t done any trim or painting yet, so there are more costs to come. I intended to list the grand total when I was completely finished, but since I go back to teaching on Monday, “completely finished” may not come for a couple of weeks now. I’ll gather a rough estimate of materials costs and leave a comment here later tonight.

    • Brad

      Okay, this is just a rough estimate:

      The lumber I got for the project was around $330
      The screws and nails were around $40

      I also spent quite a bit of money on tools, saw blades, and drill bits. I suppose someone more experienced with woodworking than I am would already have stuff like that.

      Of course the kit and instructions have a cost too, and you can see the various prices on their website, but I have to say: I am very happy with how this turned out – especially considering my inexperience. The instructions and DVD really explain everything in great detail. I’m a very satisfied customer. 🙂

  6. Daniel MacKay

    The website is my similar journal for making a Create-A-Bed murphy bed.

    • Brad

      That’s really cool, Daniel. I like how you made it function like a desk when it’s closed. Mine looks like a wardrobe, but has no function other than a bed. I still haven’t put the final touches on it. Some day I’ll get to it…

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