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I had plenty of cardboard lying around, access to a laser cutter, and a new kitten - it was the perfect storm for my next project, a Cat Scratcher Tower. I made this at TechShop!

List of materials required is quite simple.
  1. Cardboard - I used about 5 sheets of 24x18 (the size of the laser cutter bed), and I made two cat scratchers - I could definitely use some more cardboard. It is best to use the thicker variety of cardboard (like TV boxes), as the cross section is more substantial - you will need fewer of these to stack up, and the cross sections look nice too!
  2. Wooden dowels - 2x 4ft dowels - you can get these at your hardware store - I got mine from Home Depot
  3. Some scrap wood for the base and to act as a ballast - I found mine at the scrap bin at TechShop
  4. Wood screws - 6 per Cat Scratcher - I used a total of 12 (plus a few more whose heads I ended up stripping! :-( )
  5. Felt pads - to stick on the bottom to protect your floor
Tools:
  1. Laser cutter
  2. Drill/drill press
  3. Screwdriver
  4. Clamps
PS - I forgot to introduce my model - Lokelani, aka Loke is our new kitten that we rescued from Kauai when she was about 6 weeks old. She's now about 3 months old and is a rambunctious bundle of energy, and incredibly cute! It has passed the Loke test - didn't tip over when she decided to climb it. Thanks Loke!

Step 1: Laser cut your cardboard

My outline was simple - a 4 inch round, with two 3/4 inch holes for the dowels.* You can go crazy with the shapes if you want! That's the beauty of the laser cutter. Cutting cardboard is a snap!!

I used the settings of 30/90/500 (speed/power/frequency) - it worked really well, scoring the cardboard just enough so that it was cut all the way through, but not burning/scorching it.

* Lesson learned about the 3/4 inch holes - Since I wanted to slide them through the dowels, I should have made them slightly larger than 3/4 inches - the fit was quite tight, but doable. But don't make it too much bigger, otherwise the cardboard is going to shift around.


<p>Any tips on how to remove the smell of burning from the cardboard or wood after laser cutting? I recently made a simpler cat scratcher on a laser cutter but it reeks so my wife made me take it out of the house. I could turn down the power but its only barely getting through as it is. Should I do low power but multi pass?</p>
<p>Dip a rag in hydrogen peroxide and use it to wipe away the scorch marks, which will also considerably remove the burnt smell. </p><p>I usually use that for wood, and didn't have that problem with cardboard. The laser cutter would cut through the cardboard like butter with not too much scorching. Make sure that your settings are right for paper. Also, check that the lens is clean. If you need multiple passes with the lens clean and the correct settings, then the laser cutter would need to be serviced. For cardboard, and wood that is not too hard and not too thick, a single pass ought to be enough. For thicker wood, and hardwood, you'll definitely want multiple passes. </p><p>Hope that helps!</p><p>Cheers, </p><p>Sridhar</p>
Your kitten is so adorable. I however do not have access to a laser cutter which is really a bummer but if I get one this is going to be the first thing I make
Nice, very, very professional looking, I'm impressed! <br>I'm disappointed that my non-laser 'struable isn't in the &quot;Related&quot; :-( <br>http://www.instructables.com/id/Ikea-Hack-Cat-Tower/ <br> <br>In retrospect I should have put the carpet tower in a separate 'struable. <br> <br>Ron
Thanks Ron! <br> <br>I really like your instructable too! Very nicely done! Btw, I think the reason yours doesn't show up in the &quot;Related&quot; section is the tags - our tags are different, and mine doesn't show up in the &quot;Related&quot; section of your instructable either! :-) Mystery solved! <br> <br>Cheers, <br>Sridhar
Your kittens will love you yet more if you spray some valerian extract on it - ours are getting crazy after each valerian shower ;)
Thanks for the tip! I'll be sure to check out valerian extract!
Love the third photo! What a cute little lady. :D
Thanks! Your cat looks very cute too! :-)

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