- Christmas gift wrapping is among the most annoying annual traditions. It’s time-consuming, it requires some expertise, and it generates tons of waste.
- A YouTube channel known for cool Lego contraptions has come up with a Lego wrapping paper cutter that determines how much paper a gift requires and cuts the paper automatically.
- You still have to do the wrapping, however. The tool does offer one useful gift wrapping hack, though — a formula anyone can use to reduce paper waste.
Every Christmas, I have two traditions. First, I take time to wrap the gifts that end up under the tree, and I’ll probably do all the wrapping if I’m back home to spare others from having to deal with it. The process is annoying, yet I can’t free myself from it. Weirdly enough, I enjoy it, and I’m always looking for wrapping hacks to help me along the way. I also realize the whole gift wrapping thing is really futile. Aside from the odd exception where you make special packages that involve multiple boxes and layers upon layers of paper to make the unwrapping process more challenging for the recipient, most gifts come out of their wrappers in record time.
The second tradition involves collecting all the paper that can be recycled and separating it from the trash. I know deep down that wrapping gifts is an unhealthy habit and that I have to find a way to stop doing it. But I also know that I’d do anything to get my hands on this 45-inch Lego machine that measures the size of gifts to determine how much paper they need and then cuts the wrapping paper to fit the gift’s dimensions.
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The people behind YouTube channel The Brick Wall are responsible for all sorts of interesting creations that you wouldn’t find in a Lego store. Before the wrapping paper cutter, they made taco and pizza factories out of Lego, to give you an idea of what you can expect. But the Lego wrapping paper cutter project is absolutely incredible.
The massive contraption requires lots of space and needs two separate components. The box scanner (seen below) is the simpler contraption and does exactly what you think it does. It measures the length, width, and height of the box you want to wrap with sensors and a computer program that runs an algorithm for each box.
Once that process is done, you move to the 45-inch component that can hold a wrapping paper roll (top image). That’s why the Lego machine needs to be that large in size. Once the size information is fed into it, the cutter will perform two cuts to get you the required length and width for the present that you measured in the previous step.
The whole thing is automated, and it’s a beauty to watch. Seeing the paper roll back and forth and the cutting mechanism perform the required cuts is mesmerizing. If it wasn’t clear, the cutter operates on both the X and Y axes. It’s incredible.
If there’s one problem with the Lego wrapping paper cutter, that’s that it doesn’t automatically wrap the gift. The people over at The Brick Wall should really consider upgrading the whole thing with an automatic wrapping tool.
Anyone can get the same Lego tool if they have the right tools and wits. You need the right Lego parts to build it. They need sensors and motors, and the computer program that turns it into a smart tool.
While I’ll do my wrapping the regular way for at least another year, I did get something useful out of the Lego clip, and that’s the formula above, which will tell me exactly how much paper I’ll have to cut myself for each present. It’s not as cool as the Lego wrapping paper cutter, but it’s still a hack that should help me save some paper. Check out the full clip below: