I have a 1972 Shasta 1400 in decent shape and go camping by myself, yes , very sad I know. My question is the couch just isn't quite comfortable and am thinking of building a actual bed. But everyone I talk to say's not to 'mess' with the original design because it will lose value! Please help
The real simple easy answer to your question is this: You are the one using the camper, make it yours! It should be comfortable and functional for the way that you use it.
Although true that the "original" design holds "value" and is desirable to future purchasers, it has to work for you.
Others that have done this a lot more than myself have come up with other solutions, and the simple one that comes to my mind would be to fit the gaucho with a mattress topper, to put over the cushions when the bed is pulled out for use. Memory foam is probably the most common way to do this. It does not have to be a huge bulky new mattress that saves your comfort, and may also preserve the "original" for you. It may be possible to roll it up out of the way for daytime use of the sofa, and spread it out on the pull-out for night use.
The one really large drawback to consider in building a permanent bed is how much space it will cut from your floor plan, and how tight it will be to use the dinette.
Obligatory statement: "To each their own I guess....It is your camper, do whatever you want with it!"