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Old 11-27-2016, 07:19 PM   #811
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I'm seeing 13".
And note: 15" for wider mattress -- wider base for the additional leverage.

Holding a ruler against my computer screen... the mattresses in the illustrations are only around 8" thick. They recommend 13" mattress, and 15" as absolute maximum. So that would be no wasted space.

I have bought two fairly decent mattresses lately, and they are around 9". Of course, if we narrow the structure so a 9" mattress is flush against the wall, the structure and the mattress frame must both be stronger. This could be done with heavier materials, but I would rather use cables or such to the outer edge.

In Millicent, weight is a concern, so I would probably build a lighter structure and add cables.

The pressurized "hatchback" struts were not visible on the other website. Nice touch, but not needed. Notice they can be deleted when ordering.

By the way.... Millicent does not yet have safety bars to keep sleepers from falling to the floor, but she will get them. Meanwhile, her bunks are slanted a bit toward the wall.

To use the bottom bunk as a couch, it could have even more tilt. More importantly, you need thick back cushions, so people's backs can rest normally against it, with their knees in front of the edge.

Now....
I just measured a couple things in Millicent. The top of the couch is around 20", which is on the high side, but works. Above that there is 32" to the bottom of the upper bunk, and it is much too low. 40" would be more like it.

That would put the surface of the upper mattress against the ceiling of the original bus. So that means a 3 foot roof raise.

3 feet? Well, that's how much distance (average) I have in my "Captain's" bunk, and it is barely enough for comfort. Again... YMMV. LOL

My "regular" bunks are around 30" wide. That's too narrow for comfort.
The Captain's mattress is 38" - American "twin" width -- and is good. (34" would be OK for me.) In a pinch, 38" can hold two, but not comfortably at all. That requires at the very minimum 48", and much better 54" (American "full" width).

Are we making progress?
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Old 11-27-2016, 10:41 PM   #812
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The issue with going over 13"6 you will now be. Kind in many states as they don't mark anything shorter typically... so if you travel east much you'll find yourself bound up.. there's a ton of just at 13"6 stuff out this way.. buddy of mine drives oversize loads and is well aware that the Midwest and east often have older and shorter overpasses ... even on the interstates ESP through cities.. I also think you just become more susceptible to wind and work that drivetrain even harder.. the 12 foot height gets you through most stuff except for the occasional under 12 overpass that's typically very well marked..
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Old 11-28-2016, 12:04 AM   #813
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maybe hang a couch on the folded bottom bunk. Should be enough room for it to lay flat against bunk and hang under when bunk out
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Old 11-28-2016, 12:28 AM   #814
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Christopher, you are very much correct.
I used to have a book -- a book, not just a map -- of clearances in Chicago. Chicago is perhaps the worst city, because of the elevated trains -- which are not always so very elevated! (Blues Brothers movie!)

Yeah, I drove 18-wheelers for 27 years. Did some Oversize loads. The 75 foot long pipes were the most fun. Took them to a shale oil fracking place in Colorado.

As for New York City, I have unloaded in Manhattan, and other places thereabouts.
But nowadays... Over The Road drivers simply do not go into NYC. They drop the trailer at a terminal in New Jersey or elsewhere, and a local man takes it into NYC.

Moose.... I haven't started sketching yet, but I'm thinking that the middle bunk -- of three -- would not be in the way when using the bottom bunk as a sofa, since you need a "spacer" for the sofa backrest anyway. You would just pad the bottom of the middle bunk. And add cushions below it.
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Old 11-28-2016, 05:19 PM   #815
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In the interest of adding fuel to the bunkbed mental fire: I too would like to do a 3-high stack of 30 inch bunk beds with the bottom and middle beds capable of transforming into a usable couch. Concerns about how to hinge the middle bed so that it's stable for sleeping, forms a comfortable angle and depth with the lower bed for sitting, and moves relatively easily weighed on me for some time. One Sunday I was putting away Clarin brand folding chairs at church and noticed the peculiar way that their seat moves. It's different to other kinds of chairs I've used and its motion looked similar to how I'd imagined that middle bed moving. A mechanical engineer friend informed me that the mechanism is called a "4-bar linkage" and that there are techniques for their design. Unfortunately this is all the progress I've made -- I have to finish out some other things first so I can determine the angles and distances more precisely before attempting the design.
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Old 11-28-2016, 05:22 PM   #816
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I think comfort comes from lots of cushions
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Old 11-28-2016, 10:20 PM   #817
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Excellent point, Family Wagon. I'm looking at such a chair right now.

And there is even better stuff in the hide-a-bed behind me.

Simple mechanical linkages can perform amazing feats.
An easy way to design them is with cardboard and pins, on a suitable "pin cushion" board. Draw the proposed pieces on thin cardboard and cut them out. Use pins for their pivot points. Experiment until the design works as desired. Scale up or down as needed and fabricate in desired material. Impress your friends.

(A "four bar" linkage is a parallelogram with pivots at the corners. By juggling the lengths of the sides, and cheerfully abandoning the "parallel" element, you can make it do all sorts of things. [Trapezoid?] )

Yes, much can be accomplished with loose cushions, but we also need to store them somewhere when not in use. That storage has been a problem in Millicent. There just isn't much room in a bus.

For sitting, the base should be lower in the back. If you have ever traveled by airliner, you know this. An airline seat base is level, even when the back is reclined, and we are constantly sliding forward and getting our pants "wedgied". Not amusing on 11-hour flights.

A bottom bunk doubling as couch could easily have two heights at the front.

The second bunk could perfectly well have a reclined angle when stowed. I'm even thinking... it might not be too difficult to slide it downward to form the entire backrest of the couch. I'm thinking... (still ) cables with springs for counter-weighting. Might be possible to have those cables double as outer supports in the sleeping position. That would be downright nifty.

I do enjoy brainstorming.

I'm lousy at drawing, but I may have to give it a try.
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Old 11-28-2016, 10:53 PM   #818
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Is there a quick simple way to make a .gif out of a handful drawings?
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Old 11-28-2016, 10:57 PM   #819
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If you have a digital camera or a smartphone you could take a photo of each drawing....
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Old 11-28-2016, 11:02 PM   #820
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I have cameras, and a very good tripod; but I also have a flat-bed scanner, which I expect would be more accurate than a camera.
And I just signed up with Makeagif.com.
Let me play for a while.
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