The wife and I are about to embark on our first 10 day overland exploration trip. We will be living out of the Taco as we explore 10 states and Ontario Canada. I had looked into Airbedz, and Truck Bedz, but ha a hard time justifying $165 for an air mattress which we could only use in the bed of the truck. I tried to find an air mattress which would fit, but either they were too small or too large to fit in the bed. Then I came up with this solution….Cost $0!
I went to a local business which manufactures foam. They make all types of densities and sizes. I spoke to one of the floor supervisors and explained to him what I needed, and he told me to give him a few weeks and he was sure they would have a cut off end or other piece of scrap which would work. I did not have high hopes on this scrap, but I though I’d give it a try.
A week later I got a call to come and pick up my foam, and to my surprise there was a 3” thick piece of black foam waidint for me, cut to 52” x 60”. This type of foam is about the same density as the foam that comes in Pelican cases and will be perfect to sleep on!
Here are step by step instructions on how to measure, cut, and make a case for your own foam Truck Bed!
1) I used a piece of cardboard to make a template. I measured the offset of the wheel well, then transferred the measurements to the cardboard. I cut it out and double checked the fit in the truck.
2) I laid the foam out on the living room floor, and placed the stencil on top. Unfortunately I did not have a silver sharpie to trace the stencil, so I used a razor blade to lightly score the foam.
4) ***Warning *** If your wife is not cool, do not attempt this step while she is at home
Next I used the wife’s electric carving knife to cut the foam. I have used this before to make custom cutouts for rifle cases and it works great. The trick is to let the knife do the work and slowly glide it through te foam. Do not push the knife through.
Here is a test fit:
Save the cut off ends, as I was able to cut them down, and put them into the pillow cases, sew around them to make them tight and wound up with two camp pillows for free!
5) I wanted to make a slip cover for the bed so I took an old queen sized sheet set and laid it on the floor . I used a marker to trace around the foam, leaving approximately a 3” space all the way around the foam. I repeated this on both the fitted sheet and top sheet, then cut them out with scissors.
6) Now a Tailor I am not, but I turned the top sides of the sheets against each other and sewed two seams around the perimeter, leaving the wide end open. When this was finished, I turned the sheets inside out, and put the foam inside. I then sewed the last end of the slip cover closed.
7) Here is the finished product with pillows!