Project 2: Change table

For a while I’ve been thinking about how I’d fit a change table in. I live in a small flat, so there’s not really space to fit a dedicated, permeant 6 foot table in. I’ve toyed with the idea of folding ones in various designs, but actually there’s not a huge amount of space to put them up in and actually use them.

Recently I hit upon a plan to reuse a mostly neglected space – it isn’t a full 6 foot but it works – the bath tub! Hang on, how can this work you ask? Remarkably simply! The height of my bath is sufficient that the top edge is about the height for the top of the changing table. Simply place boards over and we have a solid base.

So, I measured up the length and width of the bath – ignoring the taps, I’ll fiddle that later. Got a sheet of 18mm exterior rated plywood (it is know to occasionally be wet in bathrooms!) and had it cut down to my measurements – much easier to handle that way, unless you’re blessed with equipment and space to handle the full 8×4 sheet. 18mm ply is thick enough that it only flexes by a few millimetres when I stand in the middle of each board when it’s over the bath, with no other support or reinforcement needed – plenty it won’t give way even with heavy littles on it.

Back at home I then further cut the panel into 3 sections, to make it easier to move and store – 55cm wide for each of mine, it’ll depend on the size your bath is. For the final board I then marked out the area the taps took up and cut that out with a jigsaw, so it fits either side. Then sealed the wood as I don’t want it absorbing water – polyurethane yacht varnish/enamel is ideal, give it at least a couple of coats all over.

Finally back for a trial fitting, just to make sure everything lines up, and a quick lie down on it for a small test. Next steps: including some form of padding on the top for littles comfort, a wipe clean covering. I think also I need a system for stopping the panels just sliding off the edge of the bath as they aren’t then properly supported – possibly as simple for me as a strip of wood on the bottom in the right place. Fortunately both ends of my bath end with a wall so no worries about the panels slipping off the end.

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