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Old 02-19-2022, 08:45 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Powered Bed Lifts

Hi all!

Looking into powered bed lift options for the queen bed on our skoolie.

Happijac seems like the most ubiquitous, and is avaialble through RV retailers, but it's pricy (~$2k)

Euro Loft looks like a superior solution to fit our space, but we can't seem to find a dealer that will sell direct to consumers for DIY.

i) Anyone know who we could talk about getting our hands on a Euro Loft?
ii) Any other alternatives we should consider?

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Old 02-19-2022, 09:10 PM   #2
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Are you just trying to lift your frame to get under it for storage? If so, a simple linear actuator kit could be installed in about an hour.. there's cheaper options depending what you need



Complete Linear Actuator Kit: Includes (2) Black Heavy Duty 12 Volt Linear Actuators with 12" Stroke [225 lbs Max Each], (4) Custom Fit Steel Brackets, (1) Rocker Switch & Wiring, (2) Remote Controls https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01LY3KIB9...ZD8PTBG45HFEPZ
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Old 02-19-2022, 09:17 PM   #3
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If you want to raise the whole bed, after looking at that Euro Lift site it looks like something that can be done and look just as nice with seat belt webbing, steel cable, pulleys and a small ATV winch. You'd have to build a strong enough platform to hold the mattress, and the works would have to be hidden behind a false ceiling/wall, but it could be duplicated with a few trips to Home Depot. These guys sell seat belt webbing by the foot. But really this is all the Euro Lift looks like they're doing.
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Old 02-19-2022, 10:05 PM   #4
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The purpose of the bed lift is to allow the master BR to be a home office during the day with the bed fully lifted out of the way.

Shown w/o bed platform, which would be flush against the back wall, and would fully extend from port to starboard w/ a small gap port-side to allow for a wall-mounted screen:
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The homebuilt option, utilizing an ATV winch, is an alternative I hadn't considered. My only hesitation is that I'm a financial consultant by trade, not an engineer, and I'm going to spend many hours doing said consulting while sitting under the mattress that I've hung from the ceiling.

Any thoughts on what a breaking/locking mechanism would look like on a home-built lift that utilizes seatbelt webbing?
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Old 02-19-2022, 11:21 PM   #5
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It could be as simple as a chain on each side attached to the ceiling that gets clipped to an eyelet on the bedframe. You can also use a brace from underneath on two sides that would physically keep it from falling. If you're using rails to guide the bed, a peg inside each rail would keep the bed from falling and would take just a couple of seconds to install.

I know these options sound like they'd look like Red Green specials, but they can be done to look nice. New seat belt webbing would look no different than the Euro Loft webbing, except it looks like it would be wider, and stronger. Wall braces could retract into the wall when the bed is down, and just be pulled out so they look like small wall bulkheads. For a chain hanger type, a decorative brass railing that comes down and hooks in would look nice, and could even disguise that it's a bed to begin with.

So is the bed going to the ceiling or going against the wall? If it's going against the wall, look at a Murphy bed. Those are beds built to go against the wall, and they even make one that turns into an office when it's up. Nice thing about the office one, as you can see you don't have to clear the desk first as the desktop surface stays level top to bottom. Murphys can be made so the head/foot is at the top or at the side. And, if you buy a Murphy bed, the seller will almost certainly install it for you. The springs balance the bed to keep it up, while still allowing you to easily open it. I have one in my spare bedroom for guests. Because of my experiences with this one (not the one in the pic) I'm probably going to use one in my build once I get around to starting it. Living room in the day, bedroom at night. If you went with a Murphy bed/office desk setup you'd lose the windows at the front, but might gain a larger office with more headspace.

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Old 02-21-2022, 06:58 AM   #6
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Good guidance - we will get creative and see what we can come up with that might save us some $!

We looked at several different murphy bed type layouts, but none delivered on all our requirements for the space. While it would provide more headroom in the office, it would come at the expense of storage space, which is in demand.

I'll post on the final design once things are finalized.
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Old 02-21-2022, 10:56 AM   #7
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Had the same idea. Actuators was gonna be my approach. Also not an engineer, so I'll be watching this thread for suggestions and your decisions. Good luck!
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Old 03-03-2022, 10:15 AM   #8
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Would your needs be served with a different vehicle?
.
Or, as we learned, move the office to the operator seat.
The armrests are ideally positioned for upper-body support, the steering-wheel perfect for the keyboard, the dash great for the monitor.
.
We wrote several novels, we work as Perfesserioneral Edtiors (you that read right), plus direct our legions of adoring devotees from the cab.
One tool, multiple uses.
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Old 03-03-2022, 11:48 AM   #9
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We played a bit with the concept of using the driver's area as an office, but the front of the bus is going to be the living area where our 4 kids will do homeschooling during the day, etc. We couldn't think of a way to ensure a quiet-enough environment during standard working hours to allow for conference calls etc with the kids schooling/playing a few feet away!
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Old 03-03-2022, 06:15 PM   #10
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Another option for raising a bed which may be less intrusive than a vehicle winch is to use electric tarpaulin system motors for dump trucks. They're 12V, waterproof, relatively inexpensive, can wind a steel cable with more than enough power for a bed, and are readily available. I briefly considered using one for my bed, but instead made a parallelogram lifting linkage that will use garage door springs to (hopefully) help me lift the bed to about 30 degrees, then hold it up against the ceiling by itself. We'll see!

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