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Laser Cut Birdfeeder


In the fall of 2015 I created a birdfeeder using a single sheet of 24″ x 12″ birch plywood. I designed the three dimensional object in two dimensions using Illustrator, then laser cut the finished product at my local makerspace.

an early version, freshly cut with an epilog laser. 1/8″ thick wood.

I revised the design was about a dozen times, although every single feeder that I cut has been completely functional. The first one was created to hang (which it did) but then I discovered suction cups on Amazon for about a quarter each so several variations of window feeders were born. The birds clearly like them, as you can see in the video.

I also created the music for that video. A lot of people have asked me if they can buy a feeder. As of now, the answer is no. If that changes I will let everyone know via my email newsletter, which you can sign up for below. The wood is left untreated. And to my knowledge, no birds have flown into the window(s) or been injured by the feeder.

original design, 2016

My favorite feeder is ultimately the final one I designed and cut. It can be assembled entirely without glue, too! I’m especially happy with the living hinge that extends to be a mini roof. The roof is there more for the food than it is for the birds (the birds are fine, they’re tough). Earlier versions included seed slots for feeding on both sides, but since I became fascinated with photographing the birds as they came, the one-side receptacle made more sense.

he birds make a mess, I cleaned the window just for this picture

I left the wood unfinished because I didn’t want to worry about whether a natural or unnatural product would hurt the birds (or alter their food). This design could just as easily be applied to acrylic, which is fun to cut. But there’s already too much plastic in the world, so that’s it! Here’s a gif of a black capped chickadee 👇