Ash inside small sensor

Ash build up inside the focus beam - I have cut hundreds and hundres of rubber stamps on my glowforge now since I received it on April 26,2021 and it had no problems cutting a full sheet of 8.5x11 in. but for some reason for the past couple of weeks it can now only cut half a sheet of stamps and it starts to have issues with cutting the proper depth. One side will cut perfect about 6 rubber stamps and the other side will cut the rest too shallow and having to throw away half the the product. Now I only cut six stamps stop the machine ,clean all the lenes and cut the next six stamps. Today I noticed there rubber ash inside of one of the tiny sensors at the bottom of the laser. How do I clean that it is sealed. Please any help would be awesome.


A photo of the part in question my be helpful. Also, are you cleaning the side window inside the machine as well as the optics on the printhead?

1 Like

Yes I clean everything. It is cutting some rubber stamps so will add a photo later. Thanks for trying to help. The black unit that holds the laser there are two tiny sensors on the bottom , one is a camera lens the other has like a computer chip in yellow if I remember correct. it is the one with the chip that had a build up of rubber ash inside it

1 Like

Gotcha - it is the focus beam.

1 Like

Ok, thanks. I edited my plead for help to say ash inside the focus beam !! Thanks. I know what the stuff is just not what it is all called ! LOL Is there anyway to get the ash out of that little sealed lens focus beam then

1 Like

Cleaning the focus beam lens requires disassembly of the printer head, not impossible, but definitely an advanced-level project.


It is still under warranty so I wouldn’t want to mess around with taking it apart. I would likely mess it up

1 Like

I feel the same way! Support should come along shortly to help.

1 Like

Thanks !

Thank you for all of the details @bclmtaylor! I’d like to help get you printing smoothly again. Could you send me pictures of two things:

  1. The bottom of your printer head, like this

  2. A photo of the front and back of a recent print that failed to cut all the way through? Please also let us know the date and time of the print (including time zone) in your reply.

Once I have this information I will be able to follow up with the next steps!

I have been cutting everyday as I have orders to fill . I am cleaning the glass more often to try and cut the rubber stamps. The laser was doing awesome until two weeks ago . I wasn’t sure if it was me and my settings or what it was till yesterday I noticed ash inside the small focus beam window. I cleaned everything , the window was half full of ash. Once I moved it around the ash fell off to the side somewhere but this spot is not going away. I used some electronics spray air to clean the side with the fan but it doesn’t help. I cut more stamps today July 14. at 9am mountain standard time. I am in Alberta Canada. The first two rows of stamps cut fine but then they start to have problems and do not cut deep enough as the machine keeps going.

I would appreciate any help.
Lorna Taylor

Thanks for sharing those photos with us @bclmtaylor

I took a look at some recent data from your printer. Our big concern with this being dirty would be whether or not it’s impacting how your printer focuses. From what I can see, that doesn’t seem to be the case at the moment.

Given you’re having some trouble cutting, I’d like to check over the other optical pieces in your printer to see if there’s anything else that may explain this trouble. I apologize if you’ve already done this, I’d just like to make sure.

Could you do the following for me?

Please send photos of all your cleaned optical components, with special attention to any damage you might find:

  • Both windows

    • The printer head window, on the left hand side of the printer head

    • The laser window on the inside left of the Glowforge

  • The printer head lens

    • Both sides of the lens, top and bottom

  • The mirror inside the printer head

Once we have those pictures, we’ll follow up with next steps.

I am sure that is a whole lot of over kill on the photos but maybe you can see something I am not. Thanks again for trying to help.

I will let you know the next time I cut a full sheet of rubber stamps and keep track of date and time better if keeps happening.


Hi there. Thanks for getting back to us with all of the photos. I wasn’t able to see any other issues with the rest of the optics in the returned photos. As a next step, I’d like to have you try running our Gift of Good Measure test print by following the steps at the link below:

This will be a best gauge at that focus lens affecting any print results. Feel free to post the results in any response and I will be happy to review it for any next steps. Thank you!

Ok we will do that today, thanks :+1:

Thank you! I’ll look forward to any updates.