Can't cut through leather! please help

I have 3 mm veg tan leather that I’m trying to cut, small circles like 1 inch and 1.3 inch, and it just won’t cut through. I have read the different forms here about cutting leather and nothing is working. Multiple passes does nothing, I have tried power at 100 and speed at 150, I have tried power at 30 and full speed nothing does anything it’s all the same results. I do not understand. Can some one help me, oh and I started with it being thick leather at the glowforge material setting, that didn’t work so I started customizing the settings.

Full speed and power of 30 is way off! I suggest starting with the medium natural leather settings and adjust as needed.


More speed = LESS cutting, less speed = MORE cutting.
More power = more cutting, less power = less cutting.

That said, true veg tan should cut fine with the PG leather settings. Though 3mm is on the thick side and I’d expect a fair amount of char.

Is your leather very flat on the crumb tray?
Are you using set focus?
Have you cleaned all the optics?




Oh damn, thanks, fixed!


I was trying all sorts of setting. I think I’m going to have to just get thinner leather. I never had to deal with all the custom settings so this is all new to me. I had it go at slow speed but full power and it’s just destroyed the leather but finally barely cut through and that was with 2 passes.

it’s pretty flat on the crumb tray.
i was doing auto focus, I really don’t know anything about that.
yes, although they probably need to be cleaned again now after all my experimenting.

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Are you 100% sure the lens is not upside down?
It must go in cup side up.


well I haven’t touched the lens recently so I don’t know why it would be upside down. It cuts other things fine.

If it cuts other materials as expected, you may have an unusual piece of leather. If the medium natural leather settings don’t cut your material, you may have to try a different hide.

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Unfortunately, unless it was processed specifically for laser cutting, veg tan leather is incredibly variable - even within the same piece. It’s just how cows grow. Try a different spot or piece?

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