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Old 07-15-2013, 10:00 PM   #1
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Vista bed and comfort

Ok, I admit that I like to tinker. Not much in my life goes untouched. So, my wife and I bought a 2012 vista 26P last February after looking for the right one for a few years. We absolutely love the thing. It is the right length for us and sitting in front is like an IMAX theater.. Well that is another story, back to the bed room.
The stock bed was like 2 pieces of cardboard with bubble wrap in the middle. Now I am a heavy boy and we found our selfs rolling to the middle. On inspection we found the bed support to be a hollow core build with no support in the upper end. The factory had even modified the base to slot past the locking system for the spare tire area while the base bows.
We bought a high grade birch ply, some iron on edging and a couple power tools.
We powered up the generater and cut the ply in the lumber yard parking lot while leaving a quarter inch or so to finish the cut smoothly.
The original platform was 57 inches wide, the new platform was now 65.5 inches. We added 3 strong backs for support, gluing and screwing them to the under side.
We searched and found a custom bed maker "custom marine and rv mattress". We had the "ultimate bed" cut to the same as the platform, nice stuf, natural rubbers and a gell memory foam top.
We no longer roll to the center and love the bed.. If you are thinking of a project like this, just do it.
John and Kathy
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Old 07-16-2013, 02:46 AM   #2
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Glad to hear you found a comfortable replacement. The OEM mattresses in RV's are almost always terrible. Cardboard and fiber padding is pretty common due to the low cost for RV manufacturers. You went in the right direction going with a gel memory foam in the top layer. Gel sleeps around 1-2 degrees cooler than traditional memory foam which is perfect with the high temps you can experience in RV's.
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Old 07-16-2013, 04:35 PM   #3
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Jonathon,
I slept in one of your beds after I ordered mine.. I would recommend you any time, good stuff.
john
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Old 07-19-2013, 02:54 AM   #4
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Jonathon,
I slept in one of your beds after I ordered mine.. I would recommend you any time, good stuff.
john
Glad to hear that! Thanks for the feedback. :-)
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Old 09-03-2014, 11:19 PM   #5
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Leptronjohn,

I have a 2011 Vista. Is that what you started with on this bed project? If so I would love to see some Pics. I would love to try this project and get some extra comfort. Thanks
Greg
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Old 09-05-2014, 09:38 AM   #6
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Smithy54,
I have our vista out on Lopez island above Seattle right now. Cell and data is poor. We are still loving our bed, really cool now with our ocean view and fresh air. I will take some pictures of the installation and post them. I had taken pictures of the process, will try to find them.
By the way, before leaving for our trip we installed 2 theater chairs in place of our couch, now ready to mount our 40 inch uhd tv when we get back.
I love to tinker.
John
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Old 09-06-2014, 10:10 AM   #7
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Our 2011 vista also had that problem. There was zero support in the middle bed by the headboard. I found a metal bracket in my junk pile and made that work to stop the sag. I also pull the bed about 4" from the headboard every time we camp so that I stopped hitting the shades. We also added some comfort to the mattress.
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Old 09-24-2014, 11:10 PM   #8
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Old 09-24-2014, 11:14 PM   #9
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Old 09-24-2014, 11:29 PM   #10
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sorry for the double post, i must have stuttered.
the pictures show the work i did to improve our bed in the vista. we pulled the sagging top boards off and replaced with wider and better ply. we used baltic birch , 18 mill.
we made the platform as wide as we could yet maintaining room to walk around the bed, it was a compromise on both sides. I then cut several strong backs just an inch and a quarter as shown in the pictures. we glued and screwed them on . they are just long enough to support but not block the access to the storage.
then we hot ironed the edging around the platform after routing the shapes to match the original corners. the last item was to order a bed with custom memory foam.wala a very cool and comfortable bed.
we have theater chairs instead of the couch now too..
sorry it took me so long,
john
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Old 09-27-2014, 03:20 PM   #11
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Thanks

Thanks so much for the pics. It looks like something I am going to try. Do you pull anything with your vista. I am shopping for a toad but so far haver never towed. If so how does it work out?

Smittty
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Old 09-27-2014, 03:30 PM   #12
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In short yes I do tow and at the 5,000 lb limit. It works great but I do have to
admit I installed a full banks system before doing so . Not because I needed to but just because I could still at my age. (66)
I have a 16 foot aluma tilt trailer and put my electric Ford Focus on it. I just got back from the San Juan islands above Seattle.
It drove great. Was easy on the ferry too.
John
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Old 09-27-2014, 10:05 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leptronjohn View Post
Smithy54,
By the way, before leaving for our trip we installed 2 theater chairs in place of our couch, now ready to mount our 40 inch uhd tv when we get back.
I love to tinker.
John
John, Did you have a sofa instead of the dinette setup? We love our 2012 26P but after 15-months of fulltiming, we would like a more comfortable seating arrangement. Are you placing the new 40 inch TV over the dash or have you plans for another location? Would love to see photos and details of these two modifications, if you would share!
Thanks, Dianne
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Old 09-27-2014, 10:10 PM   #14
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Thanks

Wow it is so nice to talk to someone as nice as you and you have the same rig so your a wealth of information. I noticed that under the bed your spare is gone. I would love to get rid of mine but still feel like I need one. I was thinking of putting in another hitch receptor to mount to frame on right rear for a spare holder. What did you do with yours? I know I am being a pain but my wife is asking about the removal of the dinette. Do you have a pic? Do you miss the table? Again thanks so much.
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Old 09-27-2014, 10:46 PM   #15
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Smitty54,
Not a pain , I love talking anything but work. We all are trying to make the best of what we have. Our "tinny" houses are compromises and decisions made by others. I had a sofa in mine but the dinette comes out the same. I did this on my last motorhome. The chairs we installed have small plug in tables and thy seem to work great. The chairs are so comfortable they are worth the effort. It did take me a while to figure out how to do it as they are longer than the sofa. I built platforms that support the front end and are fastened under the seat belt bolts. I will take pictures Monday. The tv will go on the wall behind the passenger seat. It will rotate 90 degrees. Almost done with it now. I took the silly chair out too.

We have finished the install of the hot water mixing valve too. Yea, it works, no scalding.
John
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Old 09-27-2014, 10:49 PM   #16
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I forgot about the spare, I did take it out and left it home. I could no change it my self anyway.
A bumper mount would be nice but they have always have breaking problems with them.
John
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Old 10-04-2014, 11:40 AM   #17
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This morning I got back to my projects on the motorhome. I took pictures of the theater chairs Kathy and I installed before our trip to the san Juan's. It took me a while to figure out how to attach properly as the front of the chairs are unsupported by the slide. I extended with the plywood and then doubled to add the holes for the chair feet to sit in. you will see a three layer, it is not needed but you do need to take the ply to the seat belt holes to fasten to. then a simple couple wood/steel screws to hold the front down. there is no other real structure in the bottom of the slide to tie too.
the tv install starts this weekend.


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Old 10-04-2014, 07:45 PM   #18
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Thanks for the pictures. You did a real nice job. I really like what you have done.
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Old 10-05-2014, 08:58 AM   #19
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In looking at the pictures I posted need to add that the chairs when out leave a lot of room to walk around them. the pictures look tight, but even can go out to full sleep position with the slide in.
The comfort level is up a 1000 percent.
now, my new 40 inch UHD will be in this week. yahoo

we installed the Atwood hot water mixing valve too. much better use of hot water and a bunch safer.
john
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Old 10-05-2014, 09:43 AM   #20
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Hey John, could I ask about the mixing valve.
I hate getting burned in the shower, then freezing, then burned again trying to adjust water tempature.
Where did you buy it and where did you install it?
Thanks, Bob

By the way, very nice job on your lounge chair project!
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