Most futons are made very similar and use the same parts to assemble them. When shoppers buy their futon they often have a set of instructions that came with the futon frame. Time passes and these instruction disappear or get misplaced and it’s time to move the futon. Not having assembled futons on an everyday basis, it may not be immediately clear how the futon goes together. In this article we’ll examine the parts and assembly of a standard futon frame to hopefully help those who may have lost instructions.
Laying out the parts:
When you purchased your futon you most likely had 6 main wood parts. 2 arms, 2 rails and a seat and back section. The back section looks different than the seat section as it has 3 pre drilled holes on the sides with the wood sides extending down to allow the seat section to be connected to it. Versus 1 or 2 holes on the seat section. Your hardware will consist of 8 bolts, 8 barrel nuts (shaped like a barrel), 4 nylon rollers, 6 metal pins, 6 washers and 6 cotter clips, allen wrench.
Attaching the hardware:
Take the 4 nylon rollers, 4 metal pins and 4 cotter clips and locate the wood backrest of the futon. It will have the three holes drilled into each side. Two of these holes are close together and the 3rd hole is towards the bottom of the side. This hole by itself will connect to the seat section. The nylon rollers have two ends. A small round top and a larger round bottom. The larger round bottom is placed against the wood over the hole and a metal pin is pushed down through the small round top through the roller and out through the hole in the back rack. On the other side slide a washer over the pin use your cotter clip and push it through the small hole in the metal pin to secure it. Repeat this step for the other three nylon rollers.
Next find the wood seat section and locate the hole closest to the end on the side. (Sometimes wood seat sections have two holes. The second hole towards the middle is for attaching what is called a kicker block. Your frame may or may not have this.) After you have located the holes on the ends of the seat section lay the wood seat and back sections face up meaning the slats in these section are facing up or are closest to the top. Now take the 2 remaining metal pins and push them through the remaining holes in the sides back section in through the holes in the seat section. Slide a washer over each pin and secure it with the remaining cotter clips.
Attaching the arms and stretchers.
Locate your two wood arms and two wood stretchers. Look at the arms and notice that one side of the arms has two routed out grooves. During assembly these routed out grooves need to face inward towards each other. Next, locate your two stretcher rails. These rails will have 4 small circular holes drilled out on the one side of the stretcher on the ends. During assembly make sure these holes face in towards the holes of the stretcher across from it. Take your barrel nut and place it inside one of the holes intended for the barrel nut. Barrel nuts usually have a phillips or flat screwdriver point and make sure this is facing out. Also make sure the threaded hole in the barrel nut lines up with the holes in the ends of the rail as your bolt will need to thread into them. Now take the bolt and push it through the outside of the arm and into the rail threading it into the barrel nut and use your allen wrench to wind the screw into the barrel nut. Repeat this step on the other bolts leaving them loose. On the rail that is closest to the routed out grooves in the arms leave two of your bolts out and make sure this area allows you to move the arm outward somewhat. [The reason for this is to make sure we can spread the arms enough to get the seat and back section into the frame without scratching our arms.]
Moving the back/seat section into the frame.
The backrest has 2 nylon rollers on each side. The top roller needs to be lined up with the routed out grooves in the arms that go up and down. If you installed the rollers correctly, the end of the nylon roller will fit into the groove and will push into it. (If it doesn’t, your rollers are installed backwards, take them off and flip them around so that the larger part of the roller is against the wood.) Now take the bottom rollers on each side and line them up into the routed out groove that runs left to right. [This step might require a helper to get the rollers lined up in the grooves.]Important Note: Make sure that the seat and back section slats are facing upwards to where the mattress will rest right on them. If it looks like the mattress will sit down into the back and seat section because the slats are facing the ground, you’ll need stop and flip the decks over and do this step again.
Now finish putting the remaining two bolts and barrel nuts into the back arm and connect them together as discussed in the above step about attaching arms and stretchers. Go ahead and tighten all of the bolts. Tight enough but not too tight. Your futon should now be ready for use.
I wrote this text version of futon assembly instructions as a guide to help those who are missing assembly instructions. Often you can contact the futon company you purchased your futon from for a set of replacement instructions. However, if that isn’t an option, I hope this guide will get you through the process of re-assembling your futon so you can start using and enjoying it once again. Many websites also include picture instructions you can use and this page futon assembly instructions might also be of help to you.