Laser-cut Cutworm Collars

Mary, having had considerable trouble with cutworms in her gardens, routinely deploys cardboard collars around new plants:

Cutworm Collars - assembled
Cutworm Collars – assembled

It seems cutworms trundle around until they find an edible plant, chew through the stem and topple the plant, then trundle off without taking another bite. A small cardboard barrier prevents them from sensing the plant: apparently, motivation to climb a short wall hasn’t yet evolved.

Up to this point, Mary applied scissors to tissue boxes, but I proposed an alternative with an adjustable fit to any plant:

Laser Cutting Cutworm Collars
Laser Cutting Cutworm Collars

A splayed cardboard box rarely lays flat, a condition enforced by a few MDF stops used as clamps.

Come to find out no two tissue boxes have identical dimensions, even boxes from the same brand / retailer, so lay out duplicates of the collar template to match your stockpile.

That was fun!

The SVG image as a GitHub Gist:

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2 thoughts on “Laser-cut Cutworm Collars

  1. What is the time ratio… laser cut vs scissors cut? I understand… saving time isn’t the point. Having some fun is.

    1. The laser produces better results in less time than anyone would ever attempt with scissors, at least after figuring out the design: a few minutes of setup, feed a stack of flattened boxes into the maw, and present the finished product to the user.

      Aaaaand Mary can now devote her scissoring effort to more artistic (and easier on the hands!) projects; giving me an excuse to tinker with the machinery is a bonus.

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