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Archive for the ‘Ask@FlatPAckAdvice’ Category

Dreams - Bed in a Box

Tuesday, October 1st, 2019

Most slatted beds are fairly simple to assemble and all you have to do is attach 4 feet, connect the four sides, before installing the slats.

Occasionally, you come across items that are more difficult to assemble. This particular bed is a “bed in box” ie the entire bed comes in one box.

Usually they come in two or three boxes, because the sides are long and thin compared to the headboard and footboard. The slats for the base you lie on can be packed separately or with either.

So to get the whole bed in one box the simple solution is to cut the side pieces in half. As a result during assembly you then have the additional task of building the sides. So these beds always take a bit longer to build.

Using one box has great advantages for the supplier. It is easier to store in warehouses and load into trucks for delivery, two significant costs in the furniture supply chain. This saving should and is reflected in the price of the bed.

This particular bed in a box from Dreams surprised me with the relatively large amount of hardware to build it. Therefore if you buy this bed be prepared to spend double the usual time.

Assembly Tips

- The method of assembly described in the instructions is difficult on your own.

- I have been building beds for 18 years and it is relatively easy to do, if you do as follows:-


Loosely fit no more than 2 bolts to each side of the head board and foot board.

2) Start by connecting one side to the head board tightly. This should simply slot in. Add any third and fourth bolts now and secure. The head board should now be leaning forward a little, but stable.

3) Connect the opposite side to the head board, again tightly.

4) Now lift one side and hook it into the footboard. The other side will lift and sag a little but this is usually not a problem, if left for a short time.

5) Then lift and fit the other side straight away, so you don’t leave it dangling too long!

6) Now add any remaining bolts and tighten them all up.

7) Finally add the slatted bed base.

Ottoman (Gas Lift Beds) Tip

Build the slatted base after you have built and installed the frame on the gas strutts. Most instructions I have seen instruct you to build the frame and add all the slats first, then lift the (sometimes very heavy) construction into place and secure it. This task can require 2-3 people. If you build the frame on the hinges/struts, one person can easily do this on their own and with far less chance of causing damage when lifting the bulky frame.

As I say this bed has much more to do when building it, as you have to assemble the sides first. There are two areas if difficulty you will have when building this bed on your own.


Each side has a foot, to provide extra support for the join underneath it. In order to complete steps 2 and 3 above easily, I would recommend leaving the feet off the side rails until you have connected all four sides (ie steps 2 - 6 above), then add these feet before proceeding to add the slats.


The other is the bolts connecting the sides to the head board and foot board. They have both tension and flat washers to ensure they hold firmly. However if you try to hook the sides over these you will find it difficult. I would recommend you initially insert the first two without washers, then when add the third and fourth with the washers, before removing the initial two bolts and re inserting them with the washers. Finally tighten them. This will take a lot less time.

Moving Large Wardrobes

Sunday, September 22nd, 2019

Wardrobes by their very nature are very heavy, and some are very difficult to move. If you a heavy wardrobe on a carpet and want to move it, you can often do it easily. This technique works very well for Rauch style wardrobes and large 4,5 or 6 door wardrobes such as the Argos New Hallingford and Very Prague range.

To slide the wardrobe around the room very easily, tip it up slightly and slide a single piece of cardboard underneath most of the base and then let the wardrobe sit on it. It does not need to be fully on the cardboard. You can then push the wardrobe easily.

TIP: Never pull a Rauch style wardrobe always push it. This also applies to the Very Prague range.

Once it is almost where you want it, tilt the wardrobe up again and slide out the piece of cardboard. This works because the friction between the cardboard and carpet is very low and it also stops the wardrobe frame sinking into the carpet pile.

NB: If nylon feet have been put on the wardrobe (these are hammered in and should only be put on a wardrobe going on a hard surface, such as a laminate floor), the above technique will not work. I would also advice not trying to move it, as you could rip the side panels where the nylon feet are positioned.

Expanding Pins

Thursday, September 12th, 2019

Expanding pins are becoming more popular because they are easier and quicker to fit, however it is worth noting a few things about expanding pins, because without taking a reasonable amount of care they will not work, and you will damage your furniture to the point you cannot build it.

You will find these on BandQ’s Darwin Range, the Holstead Wardrobe from Argos and most of the Next-to-no-time furniture from Next.

The principle of how they work is quite simple, simply push the pin into the hole (instead of screwing it in), and when the minifix cam is turned, it pulls the pin up a little and the base of the pin expands, tightly gripping the hole.

In order for the expanding pin to function properly, the collar must be flush against the panel into which it is inserted, and the two panels must be pushed firmly together whilst the minifix cam is turned to tighten the joint.

So there are two points of failure, if the pin is not fully inserted, then it will not grip the hole properly, damaging the edge slightly. On re-seating the pin correctly in the hole, it will no longer grip the hole with the same strength as the edge is slightly damaged. The damage can be less than a millimetre, yet it is sufficient to render the joint to fail. Similarly if the panels are not flush with each other before the minifix cam is tightened, it can draw the pin out of the hole, repeating the problem above.

Whilst both of these issues are very easy to avoid, it is worth pointing out, that it can be very difficult on wardrobes due to their weight, and on small items such as nests of tables to avoid.

Personally, I do not think these fittings are fit for purpose at all.

Certainly the ones on the Argos Holstead wardrobe is simply not strong enough, and expect over time a lot of these wardrobes will come apart during use from the constant banging of the sliding doors. When I have been building them, I have reinforced the joints with discrete brackets.

I have lost count of the number of Next wardrobes with the Next to no time fittings which customers have failed to build themselves and have called us in to fix them. Next seem rather disinterested in helping their customers when this happens, often telling the customers it is their own fault.

So if you do come across them, please ensure you:

a) fully insert the pins

b) ensure the two panels are firmly pressed together and there are no gaps before you tighten the minifix cams.

Ikea Panel Pin Guides

Thursday, June 21st, 2012


I am the technician in a senior school. I have seen these new panel pin holders that come in modern flat pack furniture that helps you hold the panel pins vertical and evenly spaced when attaching back panels.

Can you tell me if it is something you have come across? I took a couple to school to help my less able students, and those with physical impairments and they have been amazing. I could do with purchasing several dozen!

Any information would be great. Many thanks

Hi Nikki,

Whilst many suppliers include these, the only product I can think of which definitely does are the Ikea Pax wardrobes. I throw them away as I don’t use them. It would take an indeterminate time for me to save 12 for you.

You could try asking your local Ikea, as they regularly assemble new lines of furniture on site and may have a few lying around you could have? Or phone their customer service line?

Sorry I cannot be more help,


Argos Canvas furniture instructions

Thursday, June 21st, 2012

I wonder if you could please help me. I have been given a set of Argos Canvas furniture. One three shelved wardrobe and one three shelved set of shelves there are no instruction as to how to put it together.

I would be very grateful if you could help in any way at all.

Hi Anne,

Have a look for the item on the Argos website, many of the items have the instructions available for download as a PDF. Failing that find the product number (this is required) off the website or box and phone the Argos helpline and they will be able to send you a copy.


Replacement Gas Strutt for Ottoman

Wednesday, June 13th, 2012

We think one of the locking gas canisters has gone and the bed won’t stay up when lifted. Can we get spares?

I would try the company that supplied your bed in the first place. If that is no use,you Can try Screwfix or Ironmongery Direct.

The strutt may have a rating on it indicating what pressure/weight it can support. You will need to get one that matches this.

Missing Hanging Rail

Wednesday, June 13th, 2012

I would like to aquire a further hanging rail and fittings for a two door mirror Rauch sliderobe wardrobe. can u help ?

You can try Rauch or check with your local independent furniture stores or Bensons. Any of these might be able to help. The actual rail is not that unusual so you could also try other places such as B&Q, Ironmongery Direct, Screfix etc.

Missing Side Panel

Wednesday, June 13th, 2012

I purchased a kingston merchant chest of drawers from Focus as they were closing down. I started putting them together but i am short of one side panel on the drawer. Is there anywhere i can get a hold of this part to complete the chest?

Hi Alan,

I very much doubt it. This item was probably sold as seen as well. You’ll either have to make do or just cut a peice of wood to size and attach it as best you can. For the effort required to do this properly you could probably buy a new unit?



Screw holes too small

Wednesday, June 13th, 2012

Hi, i’m putting together a John Lewis corner unit, (tvilum-scanbirk 65010) and 8 of the drill holes are too small to take the screws that are provided. All of the other pieces are matched up and accounted for so the only option I can see is to make the holes wider myself using a drill. Or could the instructions be wrong? Either way its not something I really want to have to do - any advice gratefully accepted.

Hi Phil,

I have never come across this type of problem with John Lewis furniture.

You have probably used the wrong screws elsewhere and therefore are left with screws that are too big for these holes. I would double check the quantities used in early steps against the inventory to see where you have done it. The screws you could have misused might not be holding other parts correctly so double check.

You can drill the holes wider if you are carefuly but this shouldn’t necessary and I am sure you have made a mistake earleir in yur assembly.


Lima Bedroom Suite Instructions

Wednesday, June 13th, 2012

Have purchased a lima bedroom suite overbed unit and no instructions with unit. Please advise of any downloads of assembly instructions

More than likely this is a Rauch wadrobe, contact their UK sales office. Failing that these are sold by Harveys/Bensons and they might be able to help.