Holes in plywood platform

JDaPP

Adventurer
I am making a simple sleeping platform for my jeep and I am looking to drill a series of holes to decrease the weight but I don't want to over do it and sacrifice the integrity of the system. Anyone have recommendations on distance between holes, alignment, etc?

Plywood is 3/4" Pine, 70" long in two pieces. It will be setup/supported by the back of a 2-door Jk seat folded down and 2 reasonably strong plastic containers (heavy duty rubber maid from Walmart).
 

krick3tt

Adventurer
Wood pieces will have to be long enough for your body and might be an issue for storage.
Take the fabric off a cot and make an aluminum pipe frame for it. Lighter and easier to sleep on than wood. The frame can be sort of a take-apart type for ease of storage. Could even be electrical conduit.
 

DailyExpedition

Active member
I am making a simple sleeping platform for my jeep and I am looking to drill a series of holes to decrease the weight but I don't want to over do it and sacrifice the integrity of the system. Anyone have recommendations on distance between holes, alignment, etc?

Plywood is 3/4" Pine, 70" long in two pieces. It will be setup/supported by the back of a 2-door Jk seat folded down and 2 reasonably strong plastic containers (heavy duty rubber maid from Walmart).
Plywood is really strong, I would do the circles with at least 2 inches above, below, and side to side. Also I would do large circles as opposed to small ones, but you could put more smaller holes with les space between each one (about 1inch) and achieve the same thing especially if you stagger the holes. Smaller holes will help with stuff falling out or jamming anything you put inside the platform





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DailyExpedition

Active member
Awesome, Thanks for the replies! Will give it a go this weekend.
If you get a medium sized hole saw, well medium compared to large or small you can do the too, a hole saw is easier. Quick tip, once you start from one side go high speed and push slow, start the circle cut then stop, switch to other side and start the same way but go ahead and finish the cut, this will give you a nice clean circle with very little tear out. Ply is very susceptible to tear out, painters tape helps with that too


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WOODY2

Adventurer
Honestly the weight savings will be minuscule vs. the effort. Probably weigh less if you took 1 less beverage in your cooler?
 
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ducktapeguy

Adventurer
Honestly the weight savings will be minuscule vs. the effort. Probably weigh less if you took 1 less beverage in your cooler?
I agree with this. You can calculate how much weight you're saving, but I've done the calculations and personally I didn't think it was worth the effort.
 

fj40highroller

New member
I’m going to answer the question that you asked. I wanted to do and did the same thing. I used a 1 3/4” Forstner drill bit. My spacing was lines 3 inches apart running long ways. And then I put marks every 3 inches on those lines to drill the holes. So 3x3. I did it on The bottom of my sleeping platform and backside of storage boxes that I didn’t worry about dust getting into. And then did it on the driver side half of my sleeping system to make it as light as possible because there wasn’t really anything of value going in it. half inch finish plywood and it seems to be holding up just great. I routed out the holes on both sides with a quarter inch by half inch router bit. It does lighten it a good bit and it looks really cool too. I hope this helps. Cheers
 

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rayra

Expedition Leader
On a horizontal piece that you are sleeping on? It would need to be a lot of little holes. Honeycombing like the above pictures will do. But 23/32" ply is about 2-lbs/sq'. You're only 'saving' what, 10-lbs, max? Why bother?
You can do much larger skeletonizing on vertical pieces, to greater effect.

 

JDaPP

Adventurer
#1 thank you for all the suggestions. Let me clarify what I am trying to accomplish. Have JKU with ursa minor j30 w/4 people, 1 adult + 2 kids up top, 1 adult downstairs. Have a 3rd row seat which I will fold down and two plastic bins that will line up forward of 3rd row with plywood on top. Drilling the holes reduces the weight to make it easier for me to manipulate inside the vehicle at bedtime. Think raining/everyone inside or up top with limited room and trying to setup. As a broken down middle aged man I will take any advantages I can get, especially if it means I can use a power tool to reduce mass.

Greatly appreciate all the info as it gets me where I want to go and gives me options when I can pry the two kids out of my rightful bed on top.
daily expedition and fj40highroller thank you for the info.
 

rayra

Expedition Leader
You're going to want to run a router with a radius bit around all the edges of the holes you drill or they'll be hell on fingers and fabric. And painting it to further reduce snagging and splintering would be a good idea too.
 
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