Laser cut a bird feeder

Here is a simple bird feeder design you can make using a Glowforge laser cutter. This project requires a sheet of 1/8″ thick medium proof grade plywood, wood glue, water proof paint, and a string, shoelace, or rope to hang it.

The bird feeder is a simple open tray with a perch. Lots of room to paint and customize. First I primed and painted the bird feeder barn red. Then once that dried I used Elmer’s Painter Pens to add flowers.

I like to outline graphic images in black to make them pop, but outlining takes so much time. My trick is to draw the stems and flowers first in a thick black paint pen or Sharpie and let it dry. Then I draw the green stems, leaves and pink flowers over the black. I leave the outer edge of the black as a nice shadow outline so it all reads from a distance. No tiny outlining detail brush required!

I suggest using a water proof paint such as acrylic. If you like the wood look, you can weather proof your bird feeder by spraying it top to bottom with clear acrylic spray on paint. I don’t like spray urethane because it often remains tacky and leaves fingerprints and attracts dust. Gross. Be sure to get a crystal clear paint of some sort but look to avoid the polyurethane based sprays if you can.

Glowforge Settings and cut order for SVG: Step 1: Blue=Cut / 2: Black=Cut / 3: Red=Cut

How to build the JEMTOY Bird Feeder

I suggest putting the whole thing together without glue so you are sure where everything goes. The railing around the tray can be a bit tricky. Once you have everything set, go back and glue it all together. NOTE: I have recently added 8 little holes so the Bottom drains when it rains.

  1. First slide the Perch into the big circular opening in the main Top piece. The slot of the Perch will slide down and nest in place in the little notch on the bottom of the circular opening. This will create an X shape.
  2. The X you just created has four square hooks at its base. The four hooks push through the 4 rectangular holes in the Bottom piece.
  3. From under the Bottom, slide and glue the 4 loose Tabs into the hooks to catch and lock the X in place.
  4. The railing around the tray is made up of 6 rectangles. The 2 long pieces are the front and back.
  5. The short ones are the sides. Look at the 4 short sides carefully and pair them with their exact double. Keep them together. Let one side of the bird feeder be set A, the other set B.
  6. The B sides have one end where the tabs are offset. The offset tabs connect into the Top piece when gluing the sides onto the tray. Glue all the tabs and holes, complete the railing, and let it all dry.

Download the SVG file here to make your own bird feeder on a Glowforge.

Learn Inkscape For Glowforge – How to design for a laser cutter. Great course for beginners.

Click here for more fun SVG patterns for Glowforge laser cutter projects.