Black Widow is Living in My Glowforge.... HELP!

Hi guys, There has been a black widow living in my Glowforge for at least 2 months.

if you are part of the Facebook Glowforge User Group you may have already seen this but I am still stuck and could use some advice!

It seems to be hiding under the components on the side with the button. I think under the 2 black honeycomb pieces. I have only seen it out in the open once but I couldn’t get it in time.

I have tried:

  • Finding it with a micro flex camera
  • Cleaning the webs (every other day or so there is a new one)
  • Glue traps (a lot of them)
  • Leaving the machine open with the crumb tray out for hours (both inside the house and outside)
  • Ozone treatments
  • Sealing the machine for 2 weeks (I have since learned that they can live for 3 months without water or food)

You might try a shop-vac or household vacuum cleaner with a crevice tool. Be sure to unplug the unit first – you don’t want to zap the components with a static discharge.

Or – blowing it out with compressed air…


Honest to God…I thought this was a Halloween post so didn’t check it immediately. :slightly_smiling_face:

If you want to get the spider to come out…place a cotton ball saturated with pure concentrated Peppermint essential oil on a piece of wood on the tray, or soak the oil into a wood scrap and leave it in there. (Not the stuff you buy from the grocery store - that is extract. You need the essential oil. Buy it on Amazon.) It will move out.

Caution: Do NOT touch the pure peppermint oil directly with your hands or fingers. Use disposable gloves. It will speed up your heart if you touch it, it absorbs through the skin.

If you want to try to catch it or kill it though, you might have to enclose the machine with a large clear bag so it can’t get completely out. Don’t know how feasible that’s going to be.

Good luck.


Do you mean wintergreen oil which creates tachycardia and fever due to salicylate overdose? Which definitely is a thing.


Yeah… peppermint oil has actually been studied as a potential stimulant for athletic performance, applied directly to the tongue. Also homeopathic treatment for high blood pressure.

Wintergreen, however, is bad stuff!


Peppermint will too. (Broke a bottle, got it on my hands and didn’t clean it all off.) :smile:

Wintergreen is what I use for a painkiller. (But I’m not on any other blood thinner medications.) Very dangerous stuff, but quicker than NSAIDs to get the pain gone and reduce inflammation, at proper dilutions.

But the Peppermint is for spiders and mice. They don’t like the smell.


Thanks Jules! I have used peppermint oil before for spiders and it didn’t do much to help. My little studio was in the garden level of a house built in the 40’s and there were a TON of spiders! It’s worth a shot though!!

Had no idea about either peppermint or wintergreen being dangerous. It’s funny I use a roller for headaches that is peppermint oil and lavender. Now I wonder if that’s why it helps!

If you’re using it on yourself it’s likely diluted…which might be why it’s not enough to drive the little buggers out. It needs to be the full strength stuff, and don’t touch it.

(It has the nice side benefit of making things smell nice and fresh.)

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I do LOVE the smell of mint. The boyfriend, not so much lol

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wonder if you could just smoke it out/kill it by cutting something without good airflow. they need oxygen, right?

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That was my first thought. Seal up the bottom of the machine and drop some CO2 in there. Buy some dry ice and leave it in until it’s all evaporated…


just the temp from the dry ice might take out the spider!

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It doesn’t seem to mind wood, acrylic or draft board. I really thought the acrylic would drive it out!

I had not thought about dry ice! Do you think that would hurt any of the components. Liquid tube and freezing seem like a bad combo. How cold would dry ice make it?

Also it was exposed to 2 Ozone machines in a small area for 4 hours which sucks the oxygen out of the air and it still survived. So I am at a loss here on next steps.

I am ordering peppermint since I just moved to Mo and everything is still in boxes.

Have you considered putting a bird in your Glowforge to catch the spider?

And have a cat ready to go in case the bird won’t leave…


And to make the spider goes to the outside, put the GF next to the tree in the hole in the ground where the green grass grows all around.


We had a bit of problem with bugs and this is supposedly specific to Arthropods which includes spiders and insects…

It works pretty well but there are fumes. Sprayed into the Glowforge and leave the exhaust on for a couple of days would eliminate the odor.

Pennyroyal grows wild in Florida and also is terrible to arthropods.

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The active components in the Zevo product (geraniol and the components
of lemongrass oil) are close to some of the honeybee pheromones and
will attract honeybees.

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Pennyroyal is not one I’ll mess with. :thinking:
It’s a strong abortifacient. (Of course, so is Tansy, which I do have on hand for other purposes in small amounts. Anti-Anxiety/Hearing Loss)

This thread actually reminded me that I needed to mix up some Relax and Restless Leg. (Not for me, mom is about out.)

But do be careful with EOs. Don’t find out the hard way like I did…I’ve survived years of “oopsies”. :smile:

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I’m trying to figure out if the boyfriend doesn’t like the smell of mint, or if you don’t like the smell of boyfriend :smirk:


I’m really fond of Cedarcide ™ spray and was going to recommend the same thing.