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Published on April 16th, 2010 | by Jules IKEAHacker

14

Stora bed bracing





Creaky beds are no fun. So Ben cranks up the cables on the Stora and stops the squeaks.

Ben says, “My son has a Stora loft bed.  We like it, especially as he has high ceilings in his room.  However, even after tightening up the bolts several times, the frame still creaked and moved too much for my liking.  I thought about lag bolting part of the frame to the wall, but that seemed to be painful.

Here’s the original bed:

Here it is, all cabled up:

I decided to put in some cross bracing, but didn’t want to put in some wood diagonals.  My father suggested some cable cross bracing, so I gave it a try.  I went a bit overboard and got stainless steel cable for the looks. Originally I was going to put in lag eyes to thread the cable through, but I decided for the back to go with through bolts – I found 3/8″ stainless steel ones at home depot with bolts to match, as well as the turnbuckles to tighten the cable.

I went on webriggingsupply.com to buy the cable because I didn’t like the options at Home Depot or Lowes. I bought Type 304 very flexible Stainless Steel Aircraft Cable from there (if it’s called aircraft cable why does it say it’s not for aircraft?).  I also bought “eye nuts,” from there, which thread on the other end of the through bolts and let me thread the cable on the inside, and copper duplex sleeves and stops to use on the cable.

The “swager,” is an expensive piece of equipment most places, which allows you to squeeze the sleeves to make them tighten around the cable to form loops.

I was lucky to find one for about 30 bucks at Lowes, about half the price of the other places.  For the front posts (the ladder side) I bought stainless steel eyes, again from Home Depot.  I then threaded the cable around. Instead of having four pieces of cable and two turnbuckles for each “X,” I decided to try running the cable up one post, diagonally to the other post, up the other post, and then diagonally down, with a turnbuckle in between.

Close up of the turnbuckle with copper duplex sleeves

There is minimal slippage of cable in the eyes, and this works great – the bed frame is much stiffer and hardly creaks when he goes to bed anymore.

FYI, that’s a Gustav desk under the loft bed that my brother-in-law didn’t want.”

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Jules IKEAHacker

"I am Jules, the engine behind IKEAHackers and the one who keeps this site up and running. My mission is to capture all the wonderful, inspiring, clever hacks and ideas for our much loved IKEA items".

14 Responses to Stora bed bracing

  1. surfzone says:

    Thanks for the idea, I have this very same kind of bed, so far no squeaks, but a good solution for the future :-)

  2. Moontree says:

    Ikea bunk-beds always seemed flimsy and precarious to me, and this is a badass solution.

  3. Sethro says:

    useful hack. FYI, instead of using the swager and duplex sleeves, you could use wire rope clips. they’re definitely not as nice looking, but they are much cheaper than buying the tool, and you can disassemble the line in case you move. I use them on my bed.

  4. Robj98168 says:

    Great Hack- I like the industrial look it gives the bed!

  5. The methods you’re using look very similar to those we use on “standing rigging” (the wires that hold up the mast) on sailboats, so I have a few suggestions:

    - Its really best not to run flexible cable around sharp corners like you’re doing when you run it through those eye bolts. Cable doesn’t like being bent like that, and over time it’ll slowly weaken the cable and you’ll probably end up with the individual smaller “fibers” of the cable breaking, leaving you with nasty “fishooks” that will poke holes in little fingers. It’d be best to use individual straight cables with individual turnbuckles to adjust them.

    - If you don’t want to drop $30 on a swager, head to your local West Marine (http://www.westmarine.com – if you’re near any major port city, you’ll have one). Most West Marines have a rigging table where they have a much nicer “bench swager” you can use for free. Be polite and buy something (like swaging collars). They will probably also be willing to lend advice on how you can do your “rigging”.

    - Another good option might be to look at using super-low-stretch Kevlar or Spectra rope (also available at West Marine). It’s comparable in price to nice cable, while being much stronger pound-for-pound. It’s also more tolerant of being run around tight corners, and you can tie knots instead of swaging it, so it’d be easier to set up.

  6. Anonymous says:

    For a less expensive option with less work: IKEA Observator cross-braces
    See http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/87749600.
    5 dollars each, comes in two sizes.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Eh.. I don’t think it’s a bad idea, but it looks like a safety hazard to me.. and it looks a bit messy.. I wouldn’t do it, but I would hate for the bed to creak. I would probably just let the bed creak lol

  8. Anonymous says:

    No offence, but it looks pretty awful.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Looks very cool…

    BUT.

    I’m a mom and the first thought that ran through my head was,

    “Please, God, don’t let anyone with a child rig this in their house…it will not end well.”

    Seriously. MAJOR strangulation hazard.

  10. Benjamin says:

    Ben replies
    Thanks for the comments -
    Chris has some interesting comments re the cabling. There does not seem to be a lot of back and forth at the eyebolts, but fraying might be a problem in the long run. I bought extra flexible cable which bends well. If I do detect fraying, I will probably wire the Xs separately with another turnbuckle.

    I don’t think that strangulation is much of a risk/problem – the cables are tight without slack.

    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder – I like the stainless steel/industrial look more than I would like wood crossbraces, so…

  11. bed frames says:

    That is safer! I like the idea of those cables. Thank you for this one. I have the same bed at home!

  12. Anonymous says:

    this is a cool hack.
    i have a slightly out of topic question. i was eyeing on that stora ikea loft bed but was worried that my ceiling is not high enough. yours looks tight on top too, do you have problems getting in bed or do u ever bump your head on the ceiling? and if u dont mind what is the height of your ceiling? thanks. you’re answer will greatly help me decide whether or not to purchase that loft bed.

  13. Anonymous says:

    I don’t like the look of the steel wires – does anyone know of a way to strengthen and stabilise it using wood or at least something more discreet. Not sure yet about attaching anything to the wall as it’s a rented property and my landlord might freak out. I suppose if I have a heavier piece of furniture attached to it at the bottom that might stop it wobbling. Tiggy.

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