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Open Roads Forum  >  Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)

 > what material would work for this?

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coolmom42

Middle Tennessee

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Posted: 12/11/20 09:28pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I want to construct a faux headboard to block off the window above the bed in my RV. (It's not an emergency access window, there is another window near the bed, and this window is annoying.) I'm going to nail or screw the faux headboard to the wall, so that it bridges the window, and blocks it. I'll cover it with some type of fabric, not sure what yet.

I want this to be rigid enough to lean back against. The window is slightly recessed, maybe 1/2", so the headboard needs to be rigid enough to support itself and me when I lean on it (with a pillow, probably.) But I need it to be lightweight enough that I can fasten it to the wall with fairly small/short screws or nails.

The finished size will be about 36" tall and 48" inches wide.

My first thought is 1/2" plywood but I would definitely like to have something lighter. What material would be lighter but yet rigid enough? 1/4" plywood would be light, but I'm not sure it would be rigid enough.

Also, what is the most reliable way to find the wall studs to support this (or anything else)?


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DrewE

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Posted: 12/11/20 11:08pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

1/4" plywood (or even a bit thinner material) with some wood strips, say 1/2" x 1/2", glued on the back to stiffen it would work fine. Maybe have three such strips horizontally across the width and one vertically at each end to tie things together. It's a question of making the structure more rigid as much as making it stronger.

Another approach would be to build up a composite structure of thin plywood skins and rigid foam insulation board in the middle, all glued together. That can be incredibly strong for the weight. The stresses are carried by the plywood skins, and the foam serves to keep them flat and in alignment with each other.

For fastening to the wall, I'd consider using some decent-sized pieces of Velcro so the headboard is readily removable if that should be necessary for some reason, say because you're unfortunate enough to have the glass in the window get broken.





coolmom42

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Posted: 12/11/20 11:22pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

DrewE wrote:

1/4" plywood (or even a bit thinner material) with some wood strips, say 1/2" x 1/2", glued on the back to stiffen it would work fine. Maybe have three such strips horizontally across the width and one vertically at each end to tie things together. It's a question of making the structure more rigid as much as making it stronger.

Another approach would be to build up a composite structure of thin plywood skins and rigid foam insulation board in the middle, all glued together. That can be incredibly strong for the weight. The stresses are carried by the plywood skins, and the foam serves to keep them flat and in alignment with each other.

For fastening to the wall, I'd consider using some decent-sized pieces of Velcro so the headboard is readily removable if that should be necessary for some reason, say because you're unfortunate enough to have the glass in the window get broken.


I was thinking about the Velcro as a good fastening option. I've learned the hard way (in home repair) not to assume that you will never need to get into anything. Another option would be to use the same #2 square-bit screws that are in everything else. They are small enough to be inconspicuous on a patterned fabric.

That's a good idea with the ribs on the thin material. I could put them in the area directly over the window, to take care of the slightly recessed depth of the window. Then the remainder of the headboard would be flush against the wall, no need for reinforcement there. I could just cut a few strips out of the same material as the main part of the headboard.

ssthrd

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Posted: 12/12/20 12:31am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You don't say how big the window is, so it's hard to say how much deflection there will be in the center of the panel you want to install.

IMO DrewE is on the right track, but I would go further with at least a half inch frame around the window, then on top of that, put a structure as DrewE suggests. That would give you room for an inch of flex from the back of the half inch furring to the window glass. The thicker the frame, the more clearance you have.

You could trim the edges with a moulding of your choice.


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WNYBob

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Posted: 12/12/20 01:40am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Try Google or Pinterest search " wall mounted headboard " for design / fabric.

bucky

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Posted: 12/12/20 03:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Wayfair and Rooms to Go have what you are looking for cheaper than one can make one. Just a thought.


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jkwilson

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Posted: 12/12/20 07:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Something you need to consider is air circulation. Water will condense on the cold glass during cool weather. If you cover it, you have the potential for mold or water damage. Maybe spacing it off the window a little would be worth looking into.


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Cummins12V98

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Posted: 12/12/20 07:56am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

"My first thought is 1/2" plywood but I would definitely like to have something lighter."

Lighter??? The pc you mention would be around 15# based on 1/2" softwood plywood like Douglas Fir.


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wopachop

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Posted: 12/12/20 09:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Cut foam board the exact shape of the window and press it straight in. Peel off the plastic skin and you can paint the foam or glue a fabric to it.

Cummins12V98

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Posted: 12/12/20 12:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Headboard to me is something you can bang your head against and not have it cause pain.......

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