Strength of different hardwoods

I'm considering making a bed based on these plans. (small aesthetic/ practicle tweaks like lowering the footboard to just over the bottom of the mattress so I don't kick it, I'm tall)
http://www.popularmechanics.com/home_journal/woodworking/1273341.html
However I don't want to use Mahogany, I was thinking of Cherry perhaps.
Now I had made a bed previously, and didn't base it on any plans. The results ended in the bed breaking as I didn't use thick enough material. (It was also too tall and my wife had to hop to get in the bed, she's short)
Now I'm worried that the dimensions may have been chosen based on the strength of the wood, and perhaps other woods are not as strong. I would prefer to keep this one from breaking :)
Are their any good guidelines for this?
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I am sure you can find reams of information on the internet about wood strength. Mahogany and cherry are both medium strength woods, so it shouldn't be an issue, but it is easy enough to check.
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I ran into the Wood Handbook so I'll check that out tonight and see if that has anything. Good to know they're both medium. For some reason I was thinking Mahogany was one of the stronger woods.
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Its all about proper construction technique. Wood strength tends to be important but not as much as you would think considering the fact that Water Beds are held up by Pine sticks stapled together.
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Well, like I said, I kind of winged the last one. Apparently I didn't do enough math. Looks like in places I was short by an easy inch of wood for some of the supports.
I also went radical and designed it as 2 rails with feet that where joined together instead of a more traditional head and foot with 2 rails.
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<snip>

No, not really. They're held up by particle boards standing on edge under plywood sheeting, covered with plastic. All holding about 3 tons of water. ;-0
We used to have one. Didn't everybody, back in the day? One of the more interesting experiences in life is to get out of a warm, dry waterbed to take care of a noisy youngster, and step into a really wet carpet. The rain had filled up a planter bed, and it had soaked under the wall, completely soaking the master bedroom. I spent the day draining the planter, installing french drain in the heavy rain, and wet vacuuming the bedroom rug.
Thank goodness that was before we had any money to spend on decent furniture...
Patriarch, who learned a lot of these lessons the hard way, too.
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Oh you must be familiar with the New style beds. LOL... the one that I have helped my sister-in-law move countless times and for the last I hope was built in the early 70's. The lower section has 6 drawers on each side stacked 2 high and is all pine. There is a particle board platform on top of that.
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On Thu, 06 Sep 2007 21:44:11 GMT, "Leon"

I agree. I had a rail split on a bed i made one time. On close inspection the way I had added the connector and rail flange had left stress points on the end which was unreinforced end grain. This was cherry, but, I don't think the type of hardwood would have mattered. My design was wrong.
Frank
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yugami wrote:

Couple of tools you might find useful: http://www.woodbin.com/calcs/wdpick.htm http://www.woodbin.com/calcs/sagulator.htm
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Thanks, those look handy.
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yugami wrote:

Also, if you want solid engineering data try http://www.fpl.fs.fed.us/documnts/fplgtr/fplgtr113/fplgtr113.htm , which has been the standard reference on the engineering of wooden structures since long before there was an Internet.
For more detailed information on specific wood species try http://www2.fpl.fs.fed.us /. Use the "wood properties" link first and if that does't get you to it then try the "common names" link.
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wrote:

I have to agree with another post, saying that pine will hold up a waterbed. My king size pine waterbed, made in 1978, has been used everyday and it has not failed. You should use a proven design and use mortise and tenon joinery. I know that hickory is a very strong wood, but use whatever you think looks good or select a hardwood that is a good value (cherry is in big demand right now).
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Thats a good point to take into consideration as well. I hadn't considered hickory. Searching for info on it I found this site: http://www.hardwoodinfo.com
Which has good descriptions of different woods as well as a little sample of the grain/finish
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Thank you for posting the link to American Hardwood Information Center, it appears to be a very informative site.
Mike Watch for the bounce. If ya didn't see it, ya didn't feel it. If ya see it, it didn't go off. Old Air Force Munitions Saying

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Phisherman wrote:

While properly designed pine will hold up a waterbed, that doesn't mean that a bed frame designed for a conventional mattress and spring will necessarily do so.
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Absolutely correct. Pine like any other wood has to be used correctly to make use of its strength. A pine bed for a conventional mattress and spring is not a problem if it is properly constructed.
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