This is my first post in this forum. I just finished making my own fluid bed for about $20 and thought I would share in case it is helpful to anyone. I read quite a few online tutorials on how to make one and then ended up going with my own design. I just did a test run and it works like a charm.
Here's what I bought for supplies:
-2" flex coupling (hardware store)
-2" male pvc plug (hardware store)
-2" pvc pipe (hardware store)
-3/16" x 3/16" brass tubing fitting (hardware store)
-vaccuum bags (Walmart)
- aquarium air pump (Walmart)
- aquarium pump tubing (Walmart)
- masking tape
This actually seems like it was easier to do than on the other tutorials I saw. I put the 2" plug in one end of the flex coupling and tightened the clamp. I then drill a hole slightly higher in the flex coupling than the end of the plug sits. I put one end of the brass fitting in there. I attached the tubing to the brass fitting and then the other end to the aquarium pump. Next I cut the a 4" length of the pvc pipe. I covered one end with a cut out section of the vaccuum cleaner bag so that there was enough to run slightly up the sides. I then taped the section of vaccuum bag onto the pipe. Then the pipe goes into the other end of the flex coupling with the bag part facing down. Finally I tighten the other end of the flex couple clamp.
I actually saw a few benefits to going with the flex coupling instead of PVC fittings: 1. Since it is rubber there was no need to put sealant around where the brass fitting enters it. 2. Since the clamp created the seal I didn't have to worry about how tight the fit of the "cup" was going to be with the tape and vaccuum bag wrapped up the sides. 3. The cup is much easier to get out than in a traditional pvc fitting since the clamp can be loosened or tightened.
Here's a pic of the finished product: