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Old 03-02-2013, 02:40 PM   #1
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Red face '79 Sovereign (rear bedroom) conversion

I have a 79' Sovereign with twin beds in the rear and I want to convert them ( or gut the bedroom out) and make a queen bed back there and keep the nightstand. Is this possible? I want to use a standard bed frame (or make one), lay new carpet down but keep the nightstand that is between the beds. Any help or suggestions would be great!!
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Old 03-02-2013, 02:45 PM   #2
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Just make some measurements and see if there is enough room for a queen size bed there crossways. I bet there is.

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Old 03-02-2013, 03:21 PM   #3
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I have a 74 Sov that was originally a queen rear bedroom, converted by a PO to twins, and now I've put a normal size queen back in there... RV queens, I've found, are smaller than a regular queen. The new bed REALLY fills the bedroom, but I didn't plan on dancing in there in the first place... I didn't have the little night stand for between the beds, as the bedroom floor was completely gone when I bought her. I just plan on buying a small bedside dresser that will fit the space I have left, and bolting it to the floor. Best of luck with it. let us know how it turns out...
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Old 04-12-2013, 11:40 AM   #4
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I have the same trailer but with a rare original full sized bed. It takes a standard full sized mattress, the head of the bed is against the street side wall, and there is just enough room to walk around it. I think a queen size would be too wide.

The way the bed platform was constructed, the sides have two roll-up tambour doors, one in the center and one near the foot, with the plastic bins inside. There is just enough room to pull those bins out.

Now I suspect that these side panels are the same ones you have on your twin beds, so it may be possible to re-use them for an original look. There is thin plywood as a deck on top of the base. The dimensions of the deck are the same as a full sized mattress. There is an aluminum angle around the side and foot of the wood deck, I assume to keep the mattress from sliding when being towed. That plywood deck overhangs the base by about 6" on the sides and at the foot. This gives your feet the added space they need when walking around the bed.

Other differences I know of in the twin vs. full sized bed floorplan is that there is only one roof locker or overhead cabinet, and that is above the head of the bed (street or "driver's side")

You might be able to relocate your nightstand to between the bed and the closet. There is a tiny nightstand in the back corner which just has a spring loaded flap of a door.

Just a few other thoughts here, the full sized bed platform has an aluminum frame, those side panels I mentioned, and some thin finished plywood covering the base at the foot. It is very lightweight construction. Whatever you build back there, I'd try to keep the weight about the same or you might end up with some sway or sag. I'd think the bases of the old twin beds could be a good starting point for building the new platform.

If you like, I'd be happy to post some photos or give you dimensions.

Christopher
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Old 04-12-2013, 01:04 PM   #5
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Chris I would love to see a picture or two! I am planning on doing this conversion to a 30' Argosy. Thanks!
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Old 04-12-2013, 03:15 PM   #6
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As an aside, you can see from status that I have not yet purchased the trailer. I am wrestling with purchasing one with the pano windows in the back or going with the rear bath. Since my plan is buy one that is in poor condition, I am looking at a full monty restoration. Seems like the rear bath layout may lend itself to a full/queen setup better than a unit with the pano windows. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
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Old 04-12-2013, 04:58 PM   #7
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Actually I think the opposite is true, unless you're willing to tolerate a bed that folds up when not in use (the "Double" plans that Airstream produced.) If you plunk down a fixed queen-sized bed forward of the rear bath, it'll always be in your way enroute to the bathroom unless you're starting from the aft side of the bed.
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Old 04-12-2013, 05:16 PM   #8
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Here are some bedroom photos. The interior is mostly original but there are some notable changes. A previous owner removed the wraparound drapes and installed pink valances with roll-down shades. A previous owner also built a stacked drawer unit on top of the larger forward nightstand.

Clear toe space between the bottom of the bed pedestal and where the floor meets the base of the wall is 14" at the side which faces the rear, 15" at the foot, and 15" at the side that faces the bathroom.

The mattress currently on the bed measures about 74"x52". The deck on top of the pedestal has a 3.5" overhang at the foot and only about a .5" overhang on the sides, though the sides of the base curve outward towards the top about 2".

Note there is only one roof locker over the head of the bed, and a vista window at the foot.

I've also included a photo looking under the bed from my outside storage compartment door. There is a large open area under the head of the bed, and a long skinny area between the backs of the bins. The sections of water line you might notice are just spares I keep on hand.

Other details, the top of the large nightstand measures 25"x25". The little one in the back corner measures 22"x14"

I know that twin to double bed conversions are done by people all the time and I'd like to see some photos of what was done on the curb side, regarding any wiring for lights removed with the roof locker, and how the storage compartment door was finished off on the inside.

Christopher
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Old 04-12-2013, 06:05 PM   #9
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We too have a rear bed '79 Sovereign International, that would seem like an original (but later improved) design. In ours, the tambour doors built into the streetside "headboard" look original - but the night table between the queen bed and the wardrobe wall and the well-constructed plywood bed support and storage area were built later.

These older pictures were taken a few years ago just before we purchased it in 2009. Since then we have replaced the window coverings, mattress 'n stuff. For some reason I don't have any recent pics with the new stuff - but these older pics show the space well enough for reference to the design.



The bed support itself was a professionally completed custom plywood job, fully carpeted with storage below. There's a nice platform along the rear window side for beverages and stuff, too.



This nightstand was built-in between the bed and the wardrobe wall, with two slide-out drawers and a swing-out door into a carpeted storage area. I'm thinking it was custom built later as it's real wood, not laminate like the rest of the original surfaces throughout.



A nice touch was this floor level recess under the bed, in-line with the hallway. A great drop-area for slippers, and/or overnight duffel bags.

That knob is on a drop down panel that allows access to the centre storage compartment, one of three separate storage areas under the bed. The floor level corner boards to the left are hinged to swing away wide for easy access to the curb side compartment.

There are also large removable plywood panels on the top of the bed support that can be accessed if the mattress is lifted for total clean-out/air-out. For example, over winter time we store the trailer with the mattress up and leaning against the upper lockers with the access panels open for ventilation.



There are wide original overhead lockers in the bedroom on both curb and street side, and their tambour doors are still in great shape, rolling smoothly and locking in the open position. You can just see the edge of the curbside locker in this shot, and the floor level recess facing the central hall.



This is "as bought" and we really like it. Sure, dual beds does make it easier to get in and out without disturbing your partner, but it would be nowhere as cozy for curling up and watching movies and well, romantic stuff. I am usually up early and since the rear window spot is mine it means I get to climb over to get out.

Again, all our window coverings and stuff have since been re-done, but for some reason I don't have any good "show" pics of this area. Maybe this year, after we get back for our spring cleanout in another five weeks or so.




We already had this little rolling microwave cart and it fits perfectly beside the bathroom wall and foot of the bed, and as a portable all-in-one entertainment stand for the flatscreen TV, DVD/changer, surround sound system with sub below and storage for the 5 small speakers which are spread around the corners of the bed for movies. The headrest tambour storage area is kept well stocked with vintage DVD movies and TV series. Again, a very cozy place to enjoy even the rainy days inside with movies, beverages and popcorn.

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Old 04-13-2013, 07:28 AM   #10
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I like that credenza style headboard, Paul. Looks like it may have been transplanted from underneath the front window of your trailer or a doaner.

My headboard is just a thin cloth covered pad that is screwed to the wall. Since we got a taller pillow-top mattress, the pillows cover it up.

Do you have an outside access door at the foot of the bed? If so has a compartment for it been built in under the bed?

Now I don't approve of a TV in the bedroom, since I think that space should only be used for two things, and watching TV isn't one of them. However, I was wondering if you thought about mounting that flat screen on a swing-out mount, or beside the window at the foot of the bed? Maybe even put the video player up in the roof locker to remove the little cart? It would be a cool look and give you a little more space.

In response to Short563, I think the rear bedroom plan is the way to go if you want a full sized bed. The rear bedroom plans were less common in the 70's so it will be tough to find in that vintage.

I'm not sure what your final plans are for your trailer, but if funds are limited and you want to start with something gutted, or something that needs to be gutted because it is trashed, remember that it will take time and money to refurbish that interior. Perhaps no real savings in the end.

If you are willing to do some work but really want to hit the road as soon as possible, I'd say shop around for a trailer that has some obvious flaws to justify a lower price, but has no serious damage that you can't repair within a year. For me, I don't mind working on old campers, but I'd rather be camping.

Christopher
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Old 04-13-2013, 08:07 AM   #11
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Thank you for the pictures and thoughts Christopher and Paul! I have a long time horizon to complete the work. I would also rather be camping - which I do with my family in an SOB. The Argosy will be my hobby over the next few years and is intended for for my wife and me.
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Old 04-14-2013, 10:45 AM   #12
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Very nice pictures!!! You guys have given me some ideas I will keep you guys updated when we start the process with ours
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Old 04-14-2013, 03:22 PM   #13
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One vote against a "wall side" bed.

When we started the redo of our '78 rear bedroom Sovereign (see signature bar) we had the twins with the center bed night stand.

We hated it.

I built an East West bed with a select number Queen air mattress. The full queen took up almost all of the room and she who must be obeyed said she could not abide with the things falling into the abyss on either side of the bed.

I built a sort of "wall to wall" bed. but could use king size bed tee shirt stretch sheets on it. Again, the Goddess of the House waved her hand and said that if we were going to keep that bed arrangement that I would have to make up the bed every day....ain't gonna happen.

I tore out the wall to wall bed, put the twins back in with new mattresses and used it for a couple of years...I still hate it.

Tore out the twins and gave them away to another rebuilder.

Got an RV Queen from a rollover AS. I now have the bed base installed in an E/W pattern and there seems to be enough room to walk all around the bed. I installed the head over the drivers side access hatch and there is a ton of storage space beneath the bed. I also have access to the drawer areas on the other 3 sides of the bed.

I hope this will be the final solution.

Oh, and now she who the world revolves around has mentioned several times that she sure does like the wide bodies with a slide out.

Heavy sigh.
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Old 04-14-2013, 04:52 PM   #14
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Cass, please post some photos of the conversion. This is a common project and others will want to see how you did it.
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