Ear Savers, easy pickin's

  1. How is “ear savers” not an optional tag? C’mon Glowforge Team!

  2. The part that takes me the longest is “picking” the paper off. I can get many more ear savers out if i could speed that up. I’ve got 2 thoughts and would love some feed back…
    a) do i just pre-peel? There might be some more burning on the acrylic… but they aren’t really to look at anyway…
    b) I was thinking I could remove the GF etch and etch near the edges to make it easier to peel. Anyone do this on other projects and have tips on a pattern?

I just send them masked. They’re going to clean and disinfect them anyway.

And you can add tags; you don’t have to choose from what’s already there. :slight_smile:


at a minimum, peel off the top before you cut. you can use a rag and some windex to just wipe the top off to get the minimal mess of of it. that saves a lot of time.

that said, i don’t score or engrave them, so i have way less mess on top. and it goes way faster. and the clips are cleaner. and, imnsvho, easier to clean for the end user.


If I could find a way to handle things without leaving fingerprints, I’d consider it. They just look too shiny and beautiful freshly peeled—I let the end user enjoy that sensation. :blush: Also I tend to toss them like a big plastic salad before counting them out to pack, so everybody gets a random mix of whatever colors I’ve been cutting. The masking keeps them from looking abused. :wink:


i figure they’re going to clean them anyway, so i don’t worry about the fingerprints.


Yeah I usually do MDF and i have a great metal flat picker tool… but it scratches the crap out of the acrylic. I was thinking if i etched some ribs (sets of parallel lines) near the edge it would save me (or them) on peeling/picking time. I was thinking chevrons, arrow pointing out.

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My favorite tool for weeding acrylic is the flat edge of another piece of acrylic. :slight_smile: Wood works too, but doesn’t get all the fiddly bits as well, if it’s engraved.

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i just tear up my thumbnails getting them started. but when my thumbnails get sketchy, i use these.


sorry for clarity… i usually laser mdf… use metal tool to weed/pick mdf…

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yes those are amazing, i’m just thinking if i make 3-5 chevrons on the edge, it’ll be easier to start that trying to get the one spot on the edge. Think of it as the 3 wires on an aircraft carrier to catch planes. better odds o getting it started.

Ok i’m gonna get the 90/per sheet design someone posted and see if i can put chevrons on it for easier picking.

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I got this lil bugger back in January I couldn’t believe how well it worked for both wood and acrylic. also only $4


that’s (essentially) what i use to bray down masking that i apply.

altho i’ve also just used the edge of the plastic razor on the handle at a different angle than i scrape with and it works just as well. at this point, i just grab whichever one is most accessible.

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Love those, I have a bag of 100 of them. In a box somewhere up in Dad’s barn, with all the other stuff I keep wishing I had handy.

The friends who bought our WA house needed to move in before we left, and the second living area had been serving as my craft room. I was still laid up from ankle surgery, so they packed it up for me. If I were the sort to have a place for everything and everything in its place, I could have done a better job of telling them which stuff to leave unpacked so I could have what I needed for Glowforging. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: As it is, I have my 'forge and the materials to put in it, and whatever random tools I’d left in proximity to it. Everything else will just have to wait to be rediscovered after our next (and please God, our LAST!) move…


This. I’m in the middle of another couple of thousand. I peel both top & bottom masking off before I cut. I then drop a sheet of newspaper on the bed and lay the acrylic on top. I need to tear (using the acrylic before hand as a straightedge/measure) a couple of inches off the length of the newspaper. Nothing on top. But I place a piece of white copy paper with the end sticking through the passthrough slot so I can do a set focus against the copy paper and then pull it out before I cut. If I didn’t have the passthrough, I’d use a small piece of the masking that I pulled off and place it somewhere in the middle of the sheet to get the focus.

I don’t engrave and the biggest problem is picking all the earsaver shaped newpaper pieces out of the bed. But I’ve found that pulling the sheet out in portions (vs going after each earpiece) and dumping them in a box works fairly quickly. Then as the next one is cutting I’m pulling the earsavers out of the box and filling a USPS small Priority Mail shipping box. I get 195 earsavers in each one (arranged differently I can put 170 in). I have a spreadsheet that tells me how many small priority mail boxes I need and how many of those fit into the other priority mail shipping boxes so it’s quick to package and ship after the cutting is done.

No cleaning, wiping or otherwise messing with the acrylic is needed.

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i’ve found that if you have some really heavy cardstock to sacrifice and hit the power level just right, most of them don’t cut all hte way through the cardstock.

thankfully i have a big stack of old paper sample card stock in 13x19 that i’ve been using.

i get anywhere from 144 to 210 in small flat rate boxes, depending on the original material. might be more if i wasn’t rubber banding my stacks.

also, if it matters, six small flat rate boxes fit perfectly inside of one medium flat rate box. could probably just cram more into the medium rate box, but that many loose in there would probably be harder to distribute. i’m working on a big job (1800) for a hospital and decided giving them multiple small boxes w/144 each inside of the medium box (864 each) would make it easier for them to hand out across the facility.


I take a spare sheet of birch, or MDF, or acrylic… I set it ontop of the black handle on the crumb tray… then i slide the entire cut sheet onto the spare other sheet. Usually don’t lose any… clears the whole bed. IDK how well that will work with the newspaper bit… I actually hope to lose 1 in the process because it means that it cut all the way through! and I don’t have to break them up … i’ve had too many 98% cuts with the solid white acrylic. It seems to take more power.

I get either 175 or 195 of 1/8" acrylic depending on the way I place them (flat or on edge).

I get 5 in a medium (the square version, not the long shallow one) but 6 in a large. I use empty small boxes as spacers so I don’t need packing material. I just label them as spacers so recipients aren’t wondering why they’re not all full.

For a medium that means I can get 975 in a box with enough extra space for a ziploc of 25 more for 1000. For a large I can get between 1050 to 1560 depending on how I pack the smalls and how many smalls I stick in the large box.

If I shift to the 0.060" (1/16th) stuff that folks are also using I’ll just have to resize my smalls and my spreadsheet will calculate out all the rest. I’ve got some of that waiting for after I’m finished with my 1/8th. I’ve also got a bunch of 0.177" from Home Depot (15 sheets of 24x36) which I’ll be using after I make it through my last 10 sheets of clear 12x12. First I have to break it down. I think making it into 12x12s will actually yield more because I can get 372 out of 6 12x12s from a single 24x36. So I have supplies for another 6000 (but I have orders for 2000) and more stuff coming from BP’s garage sale :slight_smile:

Might. I haven’t done any white - I’m using clear acrylic.

i’m not using any spacers, just stuffing boxes in. and yeah, my mediums aren’t square. are you using first class or flat rate? flat rate may be slightly different.

Haven’t read the thread but spotted the comment on flat rate USPS - be aware there is a “regional” rate which is a lot cheaper than regular flat rate priority. You have to use the specific packaging, however, which you can get for free thru USPS.com. They don’t carry it at the post office.

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thanks. most of what i’ve shipped hasn’t been very regional.