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Old 09-27-2016, 08:21 AM   #1
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Newer Seneca bed platform lifts

As many of us newer Seneca owners know (with the exception of the FS model) the rear bed is part of the slideout making the installation of traditional bed platform lift struts impossible. This is due to the bed base remaining "fixed in place" while the platform slides over top of it when the slideout moves. With the bedding in place it can be a two-person job to lift the bed to access items stored under the bed. This issue has bugged me since I bought my Seneca and I announced on this forum long ago I would try to come up with a solution. Now I have! Here is how it came about:

The DW and I decided we would rather have a traditional Queen bed (versus the factory RV King) thereby allowing me to install a shelf on her side, and also to gain more room for walking around the bed. So I rebuilt and shrank the bed base and mattress platform to allow for this. While working in the area I had an epiphany on how I could add lifts! I realized that the slideout had what I will call a "trolley" that is under the bed and moves with it. It is a very heavy steel structure that incorporates a gear track moved by the slideout motor.

Traditional bed lift kits attach to the fixed bed base and the platform, but our rigs don't have that. But I thought "what if I attach the struts to the trolley, which moves with the bed platform?". To do this I would need to fabricate an adapter that would allow for the attachment of the struts to the trolley. I came up with an adapter that bolts to the trolley without modifying the trolley whatsoever. Then the struts attach to the adapter and are affixed to the bed platform. The adapter uses an existing slot in the trolley to allow the two to be bolted together. This adapter is the key, and after finishing the job I can't believe Jayco hasn't thought of this before!

I designed and fabricated the bracket in an afternoon, it is from metal I had in my shop. I bought (at my local Camping World) a bed lift kit which included the upper and lower mounts and the lift cylinders themselves. I TIG welded the lower strut mounts (from the kit) to my adapter. The adapter includes welded-on mounting and locating tabs to hold it in place and allow it to bolt to the trolley. My adapter is seriously overbuilt, but I wanted to make sure it will never be the weak point in this modification.

I am pleased to report it works fabulously! Waiting on my new Queen mattress so I can install the bedding and make sure the cylinders hold it up properly. I think I will be fine, unloaded it takes quite a bit of force to push it down. Here are some pictures of the adapter and the finished installation:
Attached Thumbnails
Lift adapter.jpg   Lift adapter mounted to trolley.jpg   Lift struts installed.jpg  
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Old 09-28-2016, 06:39 PM   #2
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Slight modification

I made a slight modification to the adapter moving the pivot points about 3" rearward. This was done so that the platform attachment points are still under the bed when the slideout is completely closed. The original design had the upper attachment points out past the end of the bed when closed. Not a big deal, but I thought tucking everything under the bed would be a "cleaner" installation.
Attached Thumbnails
Lift adapter 2 top view.jpg   Lift adapter 2 mounted to trolley.jpg   Lift struts installed2.jpg   Revised lift adapter installed.jpg  
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Old 03-27-2017, 03:57 PM   #3
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Is there a reason bracket isn't centered on trolley? I have been trying to figure out how to install lifts and this looks good.

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Old 03-27-2017, 05:27 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dananu View Post
Is there a reason bracket isn't centered on trolley? I have been trying to figure out how to install lifts and this looks good.

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I fabricated the bracket to line up with 2 x 2 bed platform support members (stiffeners) and also, if I recall correctly, I did have to "miss" something on the right side of the trolley. I think it would work just fine if the spacing was even, as long as you get the cylinders to line up with the bed platform stiffeners. I thought it was best to have the lift cylinders push in a straight line and not on an angle.

I am pleased to report we are very happy with the lifts, and also with reducing the bed size to a residential queen. Gives us more "walk-around" room and a much more comfortable mattress that takes standard queen sheets. You just have to be careful about mattress height, my new one is 8" and it slides under the wardrobe just fine.

Happy to answer any questions if it would help!

Here is a link to a photo album that may have an extra photo or two:
http://www.jaycoowners.com/forums/me...cture7121.html
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Old 03-28-2017, 11:52 AM   #5
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Awesome install Robbbyr........ looks great!
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Old 03-28-2017, 11:54 AM   #6
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Awesome install Robbbyr..........looks great!

I would like to downsize from king size in our Pinnacle, buy DW likes the king.
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Old 03-28-2017, 01:01 PM   #7
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Thanks!

I sometimes think RV manufacturers, and not just Jayco, install a king size bed so they can say they have one, even if navigating around it really isn't all that practical. I am a big guy whose years are advancing quicker than I would like, and it is so much easier now with the queen bed.

We have a king here in the "sticks and bricks" house, the DW is a snuggler so we seldom occupy even half! So we really lost nothing in the Seneca but gained maneuvering room and a much more comfortable mattress.
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Old 04-04-2017, 08:32 PM   #8
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Got lifts installed. Stayed with king bed for now.Click image for larger version

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ID:	30260

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Old 04-04-2017, 08:45 PM   #9
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Quote:
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Got lifts installed. Stayed with king bed for now.Attachment 30260

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Nice job! Makes you wonder why Jayco doesn't offer it themselves.
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Old 04-20-2017, 06:49 PM   #10
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Hi,

I have a 2015 Seneca RB. Was also trying to figure out how to put struts under the king size bed. You seem to have come up with the solution. Unfortunately I live out in boonies and gave no one to fabricate the adapter. Would you be willing to fabricate one for me and of course I would be happy to pay you for you time, material and shipping costs. Please let me know. Again, I am not looking to downsize the bed, just want to install the struts for the king size bed that is already there. Thanks, Howard
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