Adjustable Beds: Adjusting for Health and Comfort

By Wesley Vaughn   Adjustable Beds: Adjusting for Health and Comfort When adjustable beds became available for home use, they were commonly called “hospital beds.”  This was only natural, since until that time adjustable beds were primarily used in hospitals. The first adjustable beds were beds with adjustable side rails, first used in English hospitals in the early 1800s.  Then beds could be tilted with either the foot high (Trendelenburg position) or the head high...

The Great Mattress Cover-up

By Wesley Vaughn [caption id="attachment_270" align="aligncenter" width="480"] Cover of WJ Southard Archetype mattress[/caption] Ever since the transition from woven sleeping mats, mattresses have been covered. Whether filled with sawdust, straw, or feathers, a cover—also called ticking—defined the shapes and dimensions of the earliest mattresses. The role of the cover was to hold the loose materials in place. The first cover materials were whatever was available where the mattresses...

Memory Foam Mattresses – Good or Bad?

By Scott Braddam [caption id="attachment_249" align="aligncenter" width="302"] Hand Impression in Memory Foam[/caption] Since about 2004, when I bought my current memory foam bed, I’ve been sold on the benefits of memory foam. There is truly no other feeling in the world which is close to sleeping on memory foam. Memory foam is like sleeping on silk sheets, unless you’ve done it, you can’t possibly understand why people rave about it. My bed is a pure foam bed, meaning no springs...

Wooden Coils: What Will They Make Springs from Next?

By Wesley Vaughn What are innerspring coils made of?  “Steel,” we say.  Other options are: Stainless steel, titanium steel, titanium alloy, or some other metal alloy.  That is it!  Or it was—until now.  Among the new mattress companies at the Winter Las Vegas Market in January 2014 is VitalWOOD USA, the U.S. distributor for VitalWOOD, a  division of Hungarian manufacturer Bio-Textima. This family-owned firm developed the wooden coil as an alternative to metal springs,...

Microcoils

[caption id="attachment_199" align="aligncenter" width="242"] Leggett & Platt "Softouch" Microcoil[/caption] Definition Microcoils (or minicoils) are coils which are smaller than standard innerspring coils.  Innersprings are usually 6” to 8” high.  Some microcoils are 4” high, but most are much shorter, usually 1” to 2½” high. They are also narrower and made with lighter gauge wire.  Some microcoils are only ¾” tall.  At least one supplier calls the shorter ones...

Mattress Foams – Part 2

(Continued from Part 1) The three major kinds of foam used in mattresses are polyurethane foam, visco-elastic memory foam, and latex foam. Each kind of foam has variations.  First, there are different ingredients in these foams.  Then there are different densities and firmness levels. Now gel is infused into different foams to add desired characteristics. Polyurethane Foam Polyurethane (PU) foam is made by linking large molecules, usually isocyanates, to each other with modified...

Mattress Foams – Part 1

History of Mattress Foams Most of us appreciate some cushioning when sitting or lying on a hard surface for very long.  This has been true for thousands of years, with cushions for sitting and sleeping.  Mattresses began with fiber sleeping mats laid out on a floor.  At some point, long cushions or pillows were made, filled with wool, straw, feathers, sawdust, horsehair—anything to soften a hard surface. In the middle of the 19th Century, coiled springs were invented for buggy and wagon...

Spring to Sleep

What kinds of springs are in your mattress? Metal Springs The best selling mattresses over time have been innerspring mattresses.  The first mattress springs were adapted from buggy seat springs.  These springs are called Bonnell coils.  For a long time, they were the only kind of springs used in mattresses.  Now there are several types of innerspring coils.  The major kinds are Bonnell, Offset, Continuous and Pocket.  Within each of these kinds are variations.  Each type of...

Spring Beds – The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

By Scott Braddam   A recent poll on our main website, Beds.org, showed that about 38% of our readers prefer a spring bed over all other types. While I definitely prefer a memory foam bed, obviously some people like springs better. So how do you know what to look for in a spring bed? Personally, I am a very analytical person. I need to know what makes things tick. For that reason, I have developed a standard approach for evaluating almost anything I buy, from snacks to a house or a...

Simple Platform Beds

By: Scott Braddam A bed is something more than just furniture to sleep on. If this were the case, a mattress on the floor would be a bed. A bed is really a statement, a comfort, and art all at the same time. Personally, I am a minimalist. I like platform beds, and the simpler the bed, the better. My logic is that the less I have to coordinate my furniture, the more options I will have when I add new furniture to my bedroom. This is a perfect example of minimal yet functional furniture. As a...

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