Welding the sofa and bed

I am not going to write too much here for this one as it will be self explanatory when you see the photos but I have designed a sofa area which is L shaped and fits at the front of the cabin by the door. There is more than enough room to squeeze by the sofa and kitchen sink and enter the van. The sofa is special because it converts into a single bed by pulling out the metal frame and expanding outwards. This allows a second cushion to be placed on the sofa and a large area is left which can be slept on. This is ideal for a child but an adult can fit on there too. The other side along the side window contained under it the electrics in the van and also the hot water system. There is some storage for lightweight items too. At the end which will be under the TV there is a small cup holder/wood ledge for drinks etc.

The second advantage to this system is that a seatbelt can be added to the upright of the frame. This is set back from the frame and should fit behind the wall separating the cab and cabin. This means that two seat belts can be fitted to allow two extra passengers to sit in the back of the van. The framework to allow a seat belt to be compliant to UK VOSA standards means the metal must be 2mm thick 2inch by 1inch box section. It must also be attached directly to van chassis securely with bolts. There is lots of homework here to be done if you want to make this properly. The seatbelt also has to be type approved. It is down to the MOT tech to sign off the reclassification or seatbelts or in some instances you have to go to a VOSA testing station and pay them to do it.


The last step here was to add on the wooden slats for the seats / sofa bed area. This a slightly sprung upwards so you get a bit of bounce when you sit down. The clever part here is to space them out evenly on odd sides of the metal frame so that when you open the sliding framework for the bed one set of alternative slats stay still and the other comes out with the framework! You will see this better in part two!