Alignment issues still post calibration

Hello… again,

I have tried aligning the laser head twice now and I am still getting a listing. Am I the suck and doing this wrong? I place the head under the camera as per instructions, so am I missing something?

Here’s a picture:

The first cut is the bottom on and it listed a bit and the second one above it is still having an issue.

That’s completely normal at this stage, camera-cut alignment is not where it ultimately needs to be.

Yes, give yourself a little bit of extra space when you are placing your designs. About 6 mm at this point.

Eventually that will get better.

So, do I just keep placing it and trying till it gets better or will it work itself out?

It won’t “work itself out” - if you want precise placement, you need to use some kind of registration marks - I use small circles set to score, with my project set to ignore. Run the print, then align my project file relative to the registration shapes. It’s not what we expected, but it works just fine…


Blowing the image up to 500% seems to show that the preview post-view and the cut aren’t parallel. I’ve never seen this before – either a fisheye distortion or the head is actually out of line?

I agree with Jules, et al, re giving yourself more room, but since you mention “listing” I thought this might be the issue…


It will eventually improve. Glowforge is making adjustments to the algorithm used to place the images on the screen, but we don’t know when they will finish it and roll it out to everyone. :slightly_smiling_face:

So for now, leaving a little extra space between your cuts is a good idea.

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I’ll roll with giving myself some space, but I do hope that will be fixed soon. I’ll try another alignment later.

Love to see how that works since that seems like a great idea. Any chance you could shoot over a pic of the alignment circles?

There’s a tutorial by @cynd11 in the Matrix:

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Does anyone know if Glowforge has given any recent updates to this issue? I can’t find one. How is it possible to sell the pro units without the ability to do design alignment using the camera? I have seen a couple of references to the software improving and the alignment improving if you clean the feet, but that hasn’t been my experience.

I just performed a thorough and careful cleaning using the instructions

I took over two hours.

Using a piece of Proofgrade Acrylic, the flattest and most regular material I have access to, my test shapes are still cut out ~0.25 inch out of place.

I’m pretty patient and a big Glowforge fan & “founder”, but my disappointment is starting to grow. Am I alone in thinking we should have some progress on this issue? It is still just as bad for everyone else?


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Your alignment is within the currently defined tolerances. (And actually looks considerably better than mine does at the moment.)

I’ve had the advantage of seeing exactly how perfect it can get though, on the PRU unit, so for now, I’m content to patiently wait for them to roll it out to everyone.

And in the interim, I leave a little extra space. It’s not really much of a game changer. They’re not going to tell us about it until it’s ready and has been tested. (It’s just the way they do things, and always have).

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My Pro has a very small, but noticeable amount of skew. A friend of mine has a pretty dramatic skew, which is too bad.

If the image is skewed, that’s because the camera is not “square” to the laser mechanics. This is something I’d expect GF can adjust since the image displayed by the GFUI is already heavily processed to “un-fisheye” it, a little rotation of the image ought to be pretty much implicit to that algorithm.

So, at this point it’s a waiting game?

I made an observation with regard to my Glowforge. This is an observation only and has no testing or empirical data behind it. When I first got it out of the box, the alignment was dead on, and the lid fit perfectly. After several weeks, the lid didn’t fit quite as perfectly and the alignment was a tiny bit off. I am wondering if since the alignment is done on a perfectly flat surface that when you put your Glowforge on a surface with a slight bow or twist that it starts to take the same bow or twist and that affects both the door fit and the alignment. This is where I start to wonder if the long foot idea is a detriment instead of a leveling foot system, but again, just idle thinking about things, no real data behind it. If you have huge alignment issues, it might be worth checking the flatness of your surface and making sure the GF sits square and flat.

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Your alignment is much better than mine as well.

You can do a lot of cool things if you are willing to compensate for the alignment. But etching projects onto already cut materials take a lot of careful setup and extra time and risk ruining the material – all of which is the opposite of what was promised. As a founder, I understand and respect that I was asked for patience, and I give it. My concern is when new ads are being shown showing perfect alignment:


And when new units are being sold “ready to ship” which require perfect alignment (pass-through on PRO is useless without perfect camera alignment), I feel like mine should be perfect, first.