So I’ve been using a design often, have the settings saved, (I use the same wood and supplier). All of a sudden EVERY design is etching WAAAAAAYYYYYYY darker then previously. It doesn’t matter how light or fast I set things at. It’s still to dark. I feel like it’s something with the machine. What should I check?
Your fans, your optics, your focus come to mind. Also, sometimes there is a glitch in saved settings. Try manually inputting the setting you want rather than clicking on saved settings. See if that changes anything.
Have cleaned all of those, and have tried manually entering settings, and using other designs. Waiting on a new lens to see if that’s the issue. Was hoping I had overlooked something.
If you’ve recently cleaned the lens in the head, make sure you put it back in correctly…cup side up.
Your material supply may have changed even though it’s sold as the same.
If you have any proofgrade material (you should have reserved one piece of draftboard), run a test print with the Gift of Good Measure using default settings and see how that looks.
Yours would be the first report of too much power, vs power dropping over time.
The darkness of an engraving is very hard to keep constant in any case. Even how you clean up after will make a huge difference. Difference in moisture, different trees of the same species, and even difference in the location in the same tree. Add to that a cleaner set of lenses would make the cuts darker as well.
Another common case is cleaning the main lens and installing it upside down. If it was not “cup side up” then it will cut poorly and burn widely.
This advice is spot on. Any time you question how the GF is working, this should be one of your first steps. If the GofGM prints correctly on proofgrade, then you know it is your design or your material and you can save yourself time feeling comfortable your machine is fine.
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