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Old 10-11-2022, 09:34 PM   #1
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Babyproofing bunk

We recently purchased a 2022 Sunseeker 34' with bunkbeds located in the slideout. The plan is for the 4 year old (who can be mostly trusted, and can use the bathroom) to take the bottom bunk, and the 2 year old (who looks for trouble everywhere and anywhere...) to take the top bunk with some sort of .... containment structure


I was thinking about putting one of these retractable baby gates across the top bunk - image below. You push/twist a button to allow it to roll out/open, and as soon as it starts retracting it will not allow you to pull it out any further. So when it's latched to the opposite side, it won't stretch if pushed on.



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My question is, is it safe/advisable to drill into the inside "posts" / "edges" of the slideout area to mount this retractable gate? I've noted the area on the image below. This would certainly be clear of the slideout path as it is "inboard" of the East-West movement. My concern is if there are sensitive components/wires in these posts. I would think it unlikely as this location would be not the most efficient route for wiring to anything, plus the "posts" feel pretty solid - I would probably only need at MOST a half-inch screw which would likely only go into the "wood" trim/fascia.


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Alternatively, I'm open to any other suggestions on how to keep a small child IN the bunkbed!
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Old 10-12-2022, 06:38 AM   #2
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Back in the early 80's, we traveling with our two young children in a bunk bed travel trailer. I put the older 4 year old one in the top bunk which she just loved, and our younger 1- 1/2 year old in the bottom bunk. I remember modifying the top bunk bed ladder to make it safer. I even made a short ladder for the lower bunk so my youngest didn't feel cheated! Kids love ladders!

As far as a barrier, I didn't use one other then a safety bar. After a while, they both knew to call out if they needed anything in the middle of the night.

Good luck and enjoy the kids while they are young and with you. Make plenty of memories with them because in a blink of an eye, they will be heading off on their own, and in another blink of a eye, they will be introducing you to your grandchildren!
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Old 10-12-2022, 07:09 AM   #3
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Quote:
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Back in the early 80's, we traveling with our two young children in a bunk bed travel trailer. I put the older 4 year old one in the top bunk which she just loved, and our younger 1- 1/2 year old in the bottom bunk. I remember modifying the top bunk bed ladder to make it safer. I even made a short ladder for the lower bunk so my youngest didn't feel cheated! Kids love ladders!

As far as a barrier, I didn't use one other then a safety bar. After a while, they both knew to call out if they needed anything in the middle of the night.

Good luck and enjoy the kids while they are young and with you. Make plenty of memories with them because in a blink of an eye, they will be heading off on their own, and in another blink of a eye, they will be introducing you to your grandchildren!
Thanks for the tips, and for sharing your happy memories! As they say, the days go slow, but the years go fast.
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Old 10-12-2022, 08:06 AM   #4
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When our oldest daughter went away to college (to become a DOCTOR!), she said a bunch of students got into a discussion one day about family vacations and traveling. She said by far she was the most traveled having swam in both oceans and visited more than half of the states and parts of Canada. On the other end of the discussion two students had never been more than 100 miles from home!

My daughter said that was when she realized how important family vacations were to her.
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Old 10-12-2022, 10:22 AM   #5
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Quote:
I was thinking about putting one of these retractable baby gates across the top bunk - image below. You push/twist a button to allow it to roll out/open, and as soon as it starts retracting it will not allow you to pull it out any further. So when it's latched to the opposite side, it won't stretch if pushed on.
I'm not familiar with that retractable gate but because it would be stretched the length of the bunk, I can imagine it still flexing enough to allow something to fall or squirm through. My thinking is that it's probably safer to let the 2 year to sleep in the bottom bunk.

My little one, at about that age, slept on the dinette. I used a piece of vinyl siding for a barrier at first but it didn't take long to see that it wasn't needed.
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Old 10-12-2022, 12:49 PM   #6
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I'm not familiar with that retractable gate but because it would be stretched the length of the bunk, I can imagine it still flexing enough to allow something to fall or squirm through. My thinking is that it's probably safer to let the 2 year to sleep in the bottom bunk.

My little one, at about that age, slept on the dinette. I used a piece of vinyl siding for a barrier at first but it didn't take long to see that it wasn't needed.
I am with you on the retractable gate will likely flex enough to allow a small child to fall out.

I'd probably come closer to c-clamping a board to form a barrier to the child rolling out. If child want to climb over, not sure anything would keep my great grandson in check. I would worry about the corner that extends past the wall, probably have to have an "L" shape to my board.

You are talking a 2 & 4 year old?

Use bottom bunk, put one at one end of bed and the other at the other end of bed. I am thinking their feet will not touch.
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Old 10-12-2022, 01:04 PM   #7
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Would the gate you have in question extend the length of the bunk?
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Old 10-12-2022, 05:38 PM   #8
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Another thought if you do something like my board idea: Take a couple of the swimming "noodles" with a hole through the center and cut a slit and slide over the edge of board to not have hard corners. May want to glue or attach them.

I wonder if you could use my board idea to keep your gate from flexing out?

However, doesn't the height get too high to actually see the kid in the bunk and monitor the child?
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Old 10-12-2022, 07:14 PM   #9
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Thank you all so much for the responses and feedback to the idea! Perhaps this retractable gate will not quite work as initially intended...

Great idea with the pool noodle! They seem to have almost as many uses as WD40 and duct tape

Now that I've read your replies, I'm actually thinking more along the lines of the "roll-off-the-bed-barrier" like the board suggestion and less of the "total confinement" idea. As rascally as the 2 year old is, she is also a bit of a scaredy cat and wouldn't intentionally try to get down herself (there is no ladder currently). Plus, her older sister is a total tattle-tale and takes GREAT pleasure in letting us know the instant the little one is causing trouble
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Old 10-15-2022, 12:07 PM   #10
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Is this something that might work. First in search many more different size and price.
Bed Rail for Toddlers & Infants – Kids Bed Safety Guard Rail –Toddler Bed Rails for Twin, Full Size, Queen &King Mattress – Baby Bed Rail for Children – Extra Long Crib Rail Guard -Grey (59L19.5H) in https://a.co/d/d41YNA4
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Old 10-15-2022, 12:53 PM   #11
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Not sure if it’s containment enough, but when I camp with my young granddaughter (now 4, taking her camping since age 2) I put long and fat pillows under the fitted sheet when making her bed, along the outer edge. She could definitely climb over but it has prevented her from rolling out of bed overnight.
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Old 10-15-2022, 01:34 PM   #12
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Not sure if it’s containment enough, but when I camp with my young granddaughter (now 4, taking her camping since age 2) I put long and fat pillows under the fitted sheet when making her bed, along the outer edge. She could definitely climb over but it has prevented her from rolling out of bed overnight.
That is a great idea!
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Old 10-15-2022, 01:38 PM   #13
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There is a name for that... at least in nautical terms they are known as "Lee cloths". You can search on that term for nany DIY or pre- fabled ones.
Here's one example... just fasten the bottom securely under the mattress and the upper section can be fastened on the sides and/or overhead with webbing, or rope and some quick connects, snap hooks, etcClick image for larger version

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Old 10-15-2022, 08:08 PM   #14
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Thanks all for the excellent ideas!

I'll be sure to post back here when we get something set up!
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