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How to Make a Bed Frame out of Pallets
Pallets can be modified for a lot of different uses, and making a bed frame is one of the more interesting ones that I’ve stumbled upon recently. All you need are a couple of pallets that are in good condition and some other common items, and you’re good to go. Let’s look at one example that illustrates how easy it is to put a bed frame together while making good use out of some material that is just sitting around and collecting dust.
4 pallets that are similar in size
12-16 brackets or hurricane straps that are 4” long
1 piece 4×8 piece of plywood
Approximately 80 wood screws
Drill with screwdriver attachment
Paint or stain
Keep in mind that you can improvise as you go based on the materials that you have on hand. The essential parts of this project are the pallets and fasteners. You can also improvise on the size of the bed by connecting additional pallets and adding more plywood as well.
The first step is to remove the top horizontal boards on two pallets and the bottom horizontal ones off the other two. The aim is to stack the boards atop each other by lining up their respective crossbeams and securing them together. This will not only make the frame taller, but it will also create spaces along the sides to insert drawers later. You could also skip this step and stack the two sets of pallets together and secure them in place to create the frame as well. However, you won’t have any storage space when finished.
Adding the Plywood
Cut the plywood into pieces that will fit between the crossbeams and the inside-bottom of each pallet. Glue them in place and add some weight as necessary to create a good seal. Sand down the edges of the plywood as well as around the outside perimeter of the pallets. You want the surface to be as smooth as possible to prevent getting cut, poked or snagged by splinters, nails or any other type of protrusions. This will also help to protect your mattress and bedding.
Painting and Attaching the Pallets
Once the pallets have been prepared and sanded, you can either paint or stain them now or wait until they are attached. If you paint them now, you may find it easier to get into some hard to reach places. It may also be easier to work with the individual pallets as opposed to trying to maneuver the entire frame later on. You may also want to consider treating the wood in order to slow decay and prevent insect problems down the line.
When the time comes to attach the pallets, place one over the other so they are sandwiched together. Align the the center crossbeam in each set and attach one bracket on one side about an inch or two from the outside edge. Attach the another bracket to the opposite side near the corresponding outside edge. Repeat this for the other segment you are creating. Next, attach another bracket near each outside corner of each pallet until you have a total of four brackets and four connections.
Finally, join the two pallet sections by placing brackets on either side of the outer crossbeams the form the border of each section. Place the brackets vertically so they will secure the top and bottom portions of each pallet section. Ideally, you want to have four brackets for each connection, two on one side and two on the other. However, you can get by with using two brackets, one one each side, if the connection is secure and the frame is sturdy.
All you need to do now is place the mattress on top, and you can start enjoying your new bed. Keep in mind that this project will produce a twin-sized frame, and you can scale up with more sections in order to accommodate larger mattresses. You may also want to consider adding some reinforcing pieces of 2×4 throughout the frame in order to prevent the pallets from sagging and promoting better weight distribution.
As you can see, there’s plenty of room to improvise, but this example gives you a general idea of what to expect. Try it for yourself, and see how you can take advantage of this project now as well as during a time when you need to be self-sufficient.
Homemade Diaper Rash Remedies That Really Work
Diaper rashes are not only uncomfortable, but they can lead to a number of infections that can place a lot of stress on babies as well as their parents. The most common cause of diaper rashes is wearing dirty diapers for long periods of time, and this can be a big problem during a prolonged survival situation as supplies may be limited and you try to conserve your stockpile. Let’s take a look at some common, yet simple remedies that you can use to help clear up diaper rashes in order minimize the discomfort and stress that may be magnified during difficult times.
Vinegar is a gentle, yet effective way to balance pH levels on the skin after it comes into contact with the acidic compounds in urine. These acids irritate the skin and contribute to chafing, redness as well as the potential for bacterial and yeast infections to develop. If you are using disposable diapers, clean them as normal before soaking them in a bucket that contains one cup of vinegar for every gallon of water. Allow to dry without rinsing and this will help to protect the baby when they wear the diapers the next time. Another important option is to add a tablespoon of vinegar to a cup of water and gently dab it on the baby’s skin after cleaning and before putting on the new diaper.
Baking Soda and Cornstarch
Both of these items help to absorb moisture and reduce friction between the diaper and skin. Using them can help to speed up the healing of rashes while also helping to prevent them from developing in the first place. To treat a rash, take two tablespoons of baking soda for every cup of water and stir until the powder is dissolved. Gently wash the rash and pat it dry. You can also use a baking soda/water mixture to bathe the baby a few times a day until the rash clears.
Sprinkling cornstarch on the baby’s bottom after removing the diaper and cleaning the area can help to reduce friction and contribute to the healing process as well. Simply apply a generous amount of starch to the skin and new diaper before putting it on the baby.
Coconut Oil and Shea Butter
Coconut oil is a fantastic skin moisturizer that is loaded with vitamins that also promote healing and the overall health of skin as well. You can apply the oil to an existing rash or as a way to prevent one from occurring. You can also add a few tablespoons of coconut oil to the bath water and use it to help cleanse and protect all of the skin.
Shea butter acts as a moisturizer, but it also has very strong antibiotic and anti-fungal properties that can go a long way to quickly heal rashes while preventing new ones from developing. Simply let the butter melt in your hands before applying it to the baby’s bottom and putting on a new diaper. You can also use a small amount of petroleum jelly to act as a protective barrier between the diaper and the skin as an alternative.
Oatmeal and Breast Milk
Oatmeal baths are well-known for helping to alleviate the pain and irritation associated with various skin conditions. Not only does it help to dry out rashes, but it soothes the skin and helps to promote the healing process. Believe it or not, breast milk is also an excellent option to use for treating diaper rashes due to their nutrient content and the fact that the baby will not have an allergic reaction to the treatment. Apply some milk to the affected area and allow it to dry before using one of the other remedies listed above to coat and protect the skin after you put on the new diaper.
This is not intended to be an exhaustive list, and there are many other home remedies out there that can be used to help prevent diaper rashes and to reduce their recurrence. Try them for yourself, and feel free to share any other ideas or remedies that have worked for you or someone you know.