I’ve owned a Disc O Bed bunk cot system for over 4 years now. We used them for over two years in a semi-permanent wall tent camp here in Canada. So if you’re interested in this sleep system, then reading this Disc O Bed review first will be helpful in your decision process.
The Disc O Bed claim to fame is that it is the only transportable bunk cot system in the world. Trust me, I’ve looked hard for anything comparable and there is literally nothing out there that does what these bunks can.
What I’ll Cover In This Disc O Bed Review
- Functions and Features
- Company Overview
*for the Disc O Bed XL
- Payload: 500lbs(per single cot/ 1000lbs in bunk format) -Thats not a typo!
- Combined Weight: ~62 lbs(both cots)
- Fabric: PVC coated 600d polyester
- Length: 6.8’
- Frame: powder-coated anti-rust steel
- Assembly Time: ~10 Min for one person
Company Overview: Disc O Bed
Disc O Bed is a family-owned business founded in 1988. They’re celebrating their 30th anniversary this year. They deserve to celebrate. Through hard work and dedication they were able to develop a robust and transportable sleep solution that’s totally outside the box.
Disc O Bed has quite a few versions of its system. There are versions for Military, Disaster Relief, Field Hospitals, Refugee Camps, Camping, and Hunting and even the Kid O Bunk for sleepovers.
Their cots have been thoroughly field-tested all over the world in the most extreme conditions and survived.
Its rare to find a company in its own niche without any comparable competition. Since they’re the only gig in town Disc O Bed could have cut a few corners on quality, but they haven’t. The Disc O Bed system remains professional grade.
The first time I ever set up my Disc O Bed XL set it took me about 15 minutes. I timed myself for this Disc O Bed review and I’m now able to do it in 8 minutes. Not the fastest cot to set up, but stilll, not bad. No tools are required and barely any brains either for that matter.
Note: To see a full time-lapse of the assembly, check out the video version of this Disc O Bed review at the beginning of this article.
The side rails connect and are fed through sleeves on each side of the fabric. Next the rails click into the special end disc brackets. Just depress a button and click them into place. After that the disc brackets are slide-locked onto the head and foot rails. That’s it. Rinse and repeat.
The second cot gets leg extensions and tie down straps if you want the bunk configuration.
Disc O Bed Configurations
The Bunk Setup
This is what made the Disc O Bed system famous. The whole design is so freaking simple. I keep thinking, “Why didn’t I think of this?! I could have been a millionaire!”
They basically solved a huge delemma: How do you temporarily shelter twice as many people in the same amount of space within one hour? Answer: Disc O Bed.
No wonder the military and relief agencies love these things.
I’m not a small guy. I weigh around 230 lbs. I was a bit nervous trusting the top bunk with my weight for the first time. I turns out I weigh less than half of the max payload.
If you move around a bit on the top bunk there is a bit of lengthways sway but it doesn’t give the “unstable” feeling.
The top bunk’s legs slip into the bottom disc bracket. The top bunk separates from the bottom bunk by pulling firmly upward. Disc O Bed provides two canvas straps to prevent the top and bottom bunks from separating by accident.
Clearance between the bottom and top bunk is sufficient, but its still a little awkward to get out of the bottom bunk without bumping the person above. If that’s an issue you can order a set of leg extensions which will give you another 7 inches of clearance.
The Cam O Bunk XL/Disc O Bed XL also help keep your temporary home organized especially if your solo. You can keep your the floor more tidy by storing your stuff high and dry on the bottom bunk.
There are some optional storage solutions too.
Velcro strips on the side of the cots enable side storage pockets to be attached. Additionally, fabric cabinets complete with shelving can be attached to the head and foot of the bunk.
The Single Cot Setup
If you’ve got the floor space for two cots or you only need one, the cots can be set up individually.
The entire Disc O Bed system packs away compactly into two well laid out storage bags. Each bag contains on cot if you only need one. The top bunk cot includes plastic foot inserts you can install to protect floors.
The Couch Setup
If you detach one side of the top bunk you can swing it down to create a rudimentary camp couch. The bars that form the back rest aren’t exactly “cushy.” Still, I actually found the couch configuration quite agreeable and you can always ad padding with you’re sleeping bag.
Considering that its a secondary function and camping is about “roughing it” a little its a pretty awesome perk.
The couch is quite low however and overweight folks and seniors may need a hand to get up. At least there are end rails to lean on if you need to.
The powder coated steel frame is very heavy duty. The real test of my Disc O Bed frame came when 4 teens plopped down on it one day when it was in couch configuration(only two bed rails supporting them). I’ll admit I was worried because they were exceeding the 500lbs max payload of my precious Disc O Bed.
That wasn’t static weight either! Those teens were, laughing, carrying on and jostling like monkeys. The Cam O Bunk XL survived the teenagers without a worry and there was no damage to the frame or brackets.
The canvas is very rugged. It’s a 600D Polyester. That’s fancy speak for heavy duty. The higher the D(denier number) the more robust. 300D Polyester is considered light duty.
It has not stretched, sagged or faded in 4 years. I can still roll over at night without feeling like I’m laying in a trough.
The only plastic part on Disc O Beds are the disc brackets. Usually when I see plastic on buy it once type products I get bit nervous. However, after 4 years of use the disc brackets are still like new and no signs of fatigue at all. They continue to function perfectly.
Price: Disc O Bed’s aren’t cheap. They aren’t consumer grade so don’t expect them to be easy on the wallet. Although cost may be a barrier to entry, I’d encourage you to save your pennies if you need to instead of buying two mediocre cots that use twice as much space.
You can check the current pricing on Amazon. Usually you’re looking at around $250 and up.
Weight: The combined weight of the Cam O Bunk XL kit is 62 lbs. So, it’s not for hikers. If you’re camping you’ll want to be within 100 yards of vehicle.
Thankfully the weight is manageable since its divided between to tote bags with decently padded velcro handles.
Tip: Big guys should call dibs on the top bunk. The bottom bunk sits quite low off the ground(11.25”.) Once you’re laying down your fine and there’s plenty of room. It just when you need to pee at 3 A.M and someone is sleeping above you that there can be an issue.
In order not to bump the person above I found myself having to gingerly rolling off the cot onto all fours before standing up. Then when you get back you have to kind of rewind the tape and start by putting at least one knee down on the ground and rolling in. I’m not a small guy, so this would be less applicable smaller folks.
Solution: Solve this problem by ordering the optional leg extension kit that raises the top bunk another 7.”(don’t worry they’re not expensive). You can check the latest price for the kit on Amazon.
This is by far, the biggest positive. You can’t beat the practicality of sleeping twice as many people in the same amount of space. There is literally no other temporary sleep solution available that does this. (I’ve looked hard!)
As I’ve already mentioned Disc O Bed’s are deliberately over-engineered. I’ve tested them well past their payload rating and they’ve done fine. At first I was skeptical that these things could actually hold what they’re rated for. I’m not anymore. They absolutely cancarry 500 pounds per single cot and 1000 freaking pounds of rhinoceros’ in bunk formation(two baby ones that is)
The three configurations: single cots, bunk and couch really open up your space usage options. I like that the cots can add seating to a cottage or camp when you’ve got friends dropping in.
So how comfortable are Disc O Beds? Very. There are no obtrusive cross members or supports running down the middle of the cots. The entire sleeping surface is taught yet flexible. It’s like a hammock without the sagging. You don’t feel like you’re sleeping in a trough. As with any bunk, sleep comfort could still improved with a camp mattress especially in cold weather.
Harnessing the vertical space in a tent was huge plus for me. It means you can neatly store your gear and keep things dry if the floor is gets wet from rain.
It’s not Just for Camping
Disc O Bed’s aren’t just for camping. We haven’t done much camping in the past year and half, but my kids have had lots of friends over.
Disc O Bed’s are brilliant for kid’s sleepovers. You can get the smaller Kid O Bunk version, but your kids will quickly outgrow them and then you’ll have to upgrade anyway.
The Disc O Bed XL flat packs nicely into two manageable tote bags. Unlike a lot of camp equipment you don’t have to fight to fit it back in the bag.
Velcro loops and elastic sleeves hold each part in its place and durable zippers don’t snag or stick. Its actually pretty cool how you can get two rugged cots to fit neatly into out of such a small kit without magic tricks.
Can you clean the Disc O Bed? Absolutely. Just use a mild detergent brush or sponge then rinse an hang to dry.
Do I need a ladder? Umm…do you have legs? If you have serious enough mobility issues that you can’t get on the top bunk, you also shouldn’t be getting a ladder. The top bunk is only 2 1/2 feet.
What if I lose one of the cots? You can order a new single cot through Disc O Bed’s website or by contacting their customer service.
Can I get replacement parts? Yes but you won’t need any. Every single part can be ordered. You could even order enough parts to build your own..but it would cost you more.
Will the cots damage my flooring? No, the rounded frame of the bottom cot is shaped that way to prevent damage to wood floors etc. However you can order extra rubber protectors to be extra sure. The top bunk already comes with plastic plugs for the legs if you wish to use it as a single cot.
What’s Disc O Bed’s Warrantee? 1 year on all parts and workmanship. It could be much longer but I believe its because they supply for the military and other commercial uses.
Can you triple stack them? No, you’re not supposed to. Although its physically possible and it would probably actually work don’t do it.
My final thoughts after this longterm Disc O bed review?
I’m convinced these cots are a world-class temporary sleep solution especially in applications where space is at a premium.
Whenever vistors see my Disc O Beds they’re pretty impressed and ask me where they can get a set.
The only thing I recommend if you’re considering these cots is to get the leg extension kit to bring the top bunk up a little higher and make life a little easier for the guy on the bottom.
If you’re research has led you Disc O Beds, you’ve definitely chosen the best. They’re really the best overflow sleeping solution out there. The Disc O Bed offers a ton of versatility. Its a solid product that will serve you well for a long time.
Currently there are four standard sizes of the Disc O Beds you should be considering. The L and XL are the same width but differ in length.
The 2XL is wider and longer and features extra sway brackets to stiffen the frame. If you’re big an tall you’ll want the 2XL. Finally there’s the Kid O Bunk version.
Here’s a few pics of the various models for comparison:
You’ll find the dimensions of each below, and you can check the latest pricing on Amazon by clicking the link.
|Dimensions 82” (208cm) L x 32.5” (82.5cm) W x 36” (92cm) H|
|Available in green, black and camo|
|Dimensions 82” (208cm) L x 39.5” (82.5cm) W x 36” (92cm) H|
|Available in green, black and camo|
|Dimensions 87.5” (222cm) L x 44.5” (113cm) W x 46” (117cm) H
Includes stiffening brackets
|Available in grey only|
|Kid O Bunk
|Dimensions 65” (164cm) L x 32.5” (82.5cm) W x 32” (82cm) H|
|Available in teal blue, lime green, and red|
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