A Futon Bunk Bed is a type of bed in which one bed frame is stacked on top of another, allowing two or more people to sleep in the same room while maximizing available floor space. Bunk beds are commonly found on ships, in army garrisons, dormitories, hostels, children's rooms, prison cells, or university residence halls.
Bunk beds range in price from economy models made with metal, solid plastic or softwood frames in which the mattresses are supported by metal wire and spring suspension to expensive models made from hardwood, which are outfitted with drawers, shelves, and other accessories.
Bunkbeds can be constructed from wood, metal, or a combination of both. They are normally supported by four poles or pillars, one at each corner of the bed, a ladder and guard railing. Because of the need for a ladder and the height of the bed, the top bunk is a safety concern for younger children under six years of age. The American Society for Testing Materials (ASTM F142792) has created a standard that requires that all spaces between the guardrail and bed frame and all spaces in the head and foot boards on the top bunk be less than 3 1/2 inches. The standard also requires that bunk beds have guardrails on both sides of the top bunk. There are different styles of bunk beds, including the most common type, the standard bunk bed, which has two same size mattresses stacked one directly over the other.
A twin over full bunk bed is another type arranged as a standard except that the bottom mattress is a full size and the upper is a twin size. A common type of twin over full bunkbed is a futon bunk bed. Futon bunk beds are arranged like standard bunks with a twin size on top, however, the bottom bunk is a western style futon sofa bed, that can convert from a couch to a bed. Futon bunks are a great space saving piece of furniture can be used to save space in small apartments or rooms, because the lower bed converts to a couch for use during the daytime.
Another type is the loft bed. These are similar to a bunk bed but there is no lower bed. These models are popular in dorm rooms and children’s rooms where the space below the loft bed can be used for other furniture such as a desk or a dresser, or even a toy chest. Some loft beds even have stowable/trundle beds while retaining the capability to contain workstations and drawers. Some loft beds are more expensive than bunk beds due to built-in storage capacity and other features.
The concept of a bed is thought to have originated in Africa, with one of the oldest examples of a raised up sleeping surface found in South Africa and dated to 77,000 BCE. Prior to this time, ancient people slept on the floor in piles of animal furs, or plant material such as straw. The bed as we know it today evolved from there. At first, frames were complicated structures and only the wealthy could afford them. Ropes that were the original mattress support had to be tightened often. A tight rope is said to have coined the phrase, "Good night, sleep tight". Eventually, in Ancient Egypt, these ropes were tied higher up on posts creating open space underneath for another person to sleep or for additional storage space.
The bunk bed has become an essential piece of furniture for rooms where more than one child sleeps or in college dorm rooms. When looking to purchase a bunk bed there are a few items to consider that will help narrow down or at least save you time when hunting for the right one for you.
First is identifying the style of bunk bed you want. The main types include a twin over twin, a twin over full, a futon bunk, or a loft bed. Some twin over twin and futon bunk beds separate into two standard beds. This versatility is advantageous as your children age and may want their own room, or may no longer want to sleep on a bunk bed. Take the top portion off and presto, you now have two separate beds. Along the lines of versatility, you will want to find out if the bunk bed you are interested in purchasing has optional pieces such as storage drawers or a trundle.
It is also important to know the total height of the bunk bed as well as the amount of space between the bottom bunk and the top bunk.
The main concern with bunk beds is safety. You want something sturdy with reinforced posts, a ladder and guard rails. Ideally you want a ladder that is permanently attached to the frame and does not move. There are types that are angled out from the frame making it easier to climb up and down from the top bunk. Reinforced posts for two piece bunk beds are essential. An example of supportive bunk beds that have been designed with safety in mind are those made by night and day furniture. They offer a wide range of frames from the standard twin over twin bunk beds to twin over full futon bunk beds to loft beds.