Afraid to Clean It!

Haha! You mean I shouldn’t take a pressure washer to it? Lol

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You can. I just don’t know if I would.

It’d probably be super clean though…

The microfiber alcohol wipes only on lenses. If you use the blue thing to remove the lens remember “cup side up” when you put it back. So many complaints from folk who forgot that. :man_facepalming:

I have used name-brand hand sanitizer on the carriage fan without removing it, but first used the vacuum cleaner hooked up to pull any excess through and totally dry for an hour before removing the shopvac
The sanitizer on a cloth also does windows .


The people that seem to have problems when it goes back together are those taking a shortcut and loosening the tensioner.

If that was the recommended way, or a better way, that’s what would be stated in the directions. It’s not.

As far as putting the belt back on using the recommended method, you need to make mechanical leverage work in your favor. You don’t try and stretch the belt on, you only get it in position to have enough bite for the motion system to pull it on for you.


Just do what the manual says, and you’ll be ok.

Don’t look for shortcuts.

Don’t clean visually clean optics. Just if they need cleaning. Treat them gently. Make sure to follow the arrow when putting the lens back in.

Don’t spray liquids anywhere into the system. Cleaning the lid, etc. — just spray a paper towel and gently wipe the lid.

It’s an expensive piece of equipment so you’re going to have to learn to clean it, as recommended, or it will be an expensive thing just sitting there.

Once you do it, you’ll feel more comfortable. If you get hung up on something and aren’t sure, just pop into the forum, post a question and a picture, and you’ll get advice really quick. The advice posted here generally comes from people that have been around a long time — the signal to noise ratio on Facebook is bad. Some of the advice there makes me just want to yell no, no, noooooo.


I think a clean machine works better.

Keep the areas cleaned, the lenses wiped down with zeiss wipes, i keep a shop vac and give the unit a vacuuming with a soft brush after each use, I use a vinegar / water mix as my liquid (also an ad hock fire extinguisher) the suggestion, is take a peice of packing tape, and stick it on a paper towel, and ‘floss’ the laser tube (with the GF unplugged thank you very much) - common sense seems to be the message of the day

as far as the fan. IF YOU PULL THE LASER CARRIAGE (gently) to the front of the unit, LOOK ON THE LEFT SIDE – you can CLEAN THE FAN with a bottle brush, with no fuss, no muss, no sprays, no nothing!!! (well, maybe some compressed air)



This trick is less true if you’ve got a pro, the heat exchanger gets in the way. It’s possible but just tougher to get at the exhaust fan.


Why they don’t make that fan removable from the outside I’ll never understand. Seems like such a simple solution. Maybe there’s something I’m missing though.

You and me both.

that seems to be a common thread, spend $10 million dollars on development, and then use a cheap radio shack part for the most important pieces, the whole fan / exhaust feels like it was slapped on as an after thought. – It’s like a custom made $600 designer shirt, and a .29 label sewed into the back on your neck, itching and irritating the skin.

– with customer feedback the next version will be better.


Yeah. I’m not an engineer, so I don’t know if they have their reasons. Most likely something to do with cost over function. But, again, I’m not an expert in this area. Overall, I think the machine is pretty well designed and definitely something I enjoy. So, instead of complaining I’ll just enjoy what it does and deal with what it doesn’t.


My mom always said “A thing of beauty is a job forever



Thanks, I will try this!

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They did improve access to the back of that fan but I gather the lawyers had some fixation of a child sticking their fingers in and getting sued when the fingers were cut or something.

That back fan may have been the second weakest part of the design. I think of the Space Shuttle and the millions spent on the tiles to stand up to all the heat and totally forgot to think about the glue that held the tiles to the shuttle. :man_facepalming: Nobody can think of everything.


I’m sure not just their own lawyers. There are design standards that they have to abide by for various certifications. One example of those is unprotected fans/fan guards.


Pictures of the Fan and its location


FB is full of fake, inacurate and plain dumb information. Why would you trust hearsay whey :glowforge: officially has a cleaning method? Think of this forum as the most valuable tool and resource that comes included with your purchase. There are very knowledgeable and experienced forum members that are also very generous with their time and advice and will gladly answer your questions or point you in th right direction, as you have already witnessed.
Also the search function in the top right is your friend. Chances are whatever your question is, someone has already asked it and there are literally hundreds of replys.


I’m going on 3 years and haven’t done a deep clean yet. I occasionally wipe the lenses with the alcohol wipes but I avoid disconnecting the ribbon cable when cleaning the head. Everyone will have different experiences depending on their level of use and the materials they are burning.
I think the main thing is just be gentle with it and don’t scrub inside with a rag that may hook something.

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