Community Glowforge Tutorials: Table of Contents



The Design Team Tutorial Project (aka "The Matrix)

This post and all related links are created and maintained by generous and helpful Glowforge customers, and customer submissions have not been vetted or approved by Glowforge staff.

Official Glowforge Learning Tutorials:

Safe Operations:

Safety (Don’t be sorry later, read this now.)
Operating Environment ( Don’t let your machine be uncomfortable.)
Stop using your Glowforge unit if…
Regulatory Information


Print a Gift of Good Measure.
Print a Snap-n-Store Box with Customization
Make a Gift Tag
Shortcut Keys
Trace a Hand Drawing with the Glowforge
Print your Own File
Cut Out a Shape
Engrave and Cut a Photo
Print Text
Introduction to Inkscape
Prep a Photo Engrave in GIMP
Prep a Photo Engrave in Photoshop
Snapmarks - Introduction
Manual Mode in the Glowforge - How to Save your Settings

Other Useful Information:

Create Accounts, Share/Delete Glowforge Access
Cleaning Your Glowforge
Moving/Packing your Glowforge

The Matrices listed below are a quick way to access the tutorials in those categories, by subject matter, without spending a lot of time trying to find things. Each link leads to a Google Docs spreadsheet that organizes tutorials about that topic. Hover the cursor over any link and click on the arrow to be taken directly to the tutorial.

Please note: Apologies…it can take a little time for the spreadsheets to load…they contain a lot of information. Give it some time. :slightly_smiling_face:

There are more links and tutorials listed in these than appear in this category, so
USE THE MATRIX links below.

The Matrix:

Designing for the Laser - Designing for the Laser

Designing with Raster software - Raster Programs Matrix
(Adobe Photoshop / GIMP / Corel Paintshop)

Designing with 2D Vector Software - 2D Software Matrix
(Adobe Illustrator / Inkscape / CorelDRAW/ etc.)

Designing with 3D Vector Software - 3D Modeling Software Tutorials
(Fusion 360/OnShape/OpenSCAD, etc.)

Workflows Using the Glowforge Interface - Workflows for the Glowforge Interface

Tips and Tricks - mechanical/material etc. - Tips Tricks and Handy Links

Glowforge prep advice
Testing for Settings
Another Disney Sign
CorelDRAW - Adjusting for Kerf in your Design
A look at a production GF demo
First try at engraving a picture
First Week
Rock engraving
Inkscape - combine vectors into engravable image
Topographical 3D Engrave
French cleat wall storage
Adobe Illustrator - Setting Stroke and Fill Colors
A number of issues right off the rip
What is a group of GF :glowforge: called?
Importing images to print?
My First 3D Print - and a few questions
Mothers day gift that is going viral at work or, How I got hooked on engraving
Manual? Non proof grade material questions
File preparation
Pro Arrived and I'm Not a happy camper
Is there an idiot's guide?
2(ish) Weeks with my Glowforge
Preparing for Glowforge
Adobe illustrator
Unable to get fine cuts. Everything getting blown out
First night printing
A cool summary page that I can no longer find
Can't cut a tracing. Won't let me change from engrave
Cutting Text - (Designing Word Art)
Recipes/Settings Book
Tutorial done! Time to play ;)
Need help preparing files for cutting
Stray lines engraving
I"m in need of a Glowforge workshop
Inkscape design
Cut file
How to add text
Material Selection
Software help, please!
Newbie in startup have basic question: Photo -> Engrave?
What am I missing?
How to cut
How to create cake topper templates
Please Point me in the right direction
File Size Changes when Uploaded
What am I missing!?
Inverting pattern
Grants from Glowforge to fund your creativity at Maker Faire
How to cut monograms
What after ruler
Pro e-mail received!
Unable to upload anything to the UI
Laser University
It's alive
Day 10 e-mail
Just got my Glowforge!
Online PDF box generator with symmetric notches –
Why no telephone support?
Here there be Dragons
AA Token
3D design - Software
Super Glowforge survives battle with the Brown Menace! Kryptonian technology comes through for truth, justice, and the Maker Way!
Help with this
Glowforge prep advice
Frustrated! [Resolved]
Cutting out
AutoCAD to scale
GriffeyForge is up and running!
Please help me understand
AutoCAD to scale
LIBRARY of User Info made for GF laser world?
Fills for engrave coming over solid
How to cut out an etched design?
The first two weeks with my Glowforge
AI Help
Testing files before cutting
Interlocking puzzle design help
Renewed Optimism - Small Box
Adobe Illustrator - Don't check Responsive when exporting to SVG
Glue, laminate, epoxy
Looking to learn in PA
What is a group of GF :glowforge: called?
Cut and engrave on prepared (curved) image
My SVG exported from Illustrator isn't working. HELP!
Glowforgey World in the Winter
Working with svg in Inkscape
Suppliers of Bamboo or MDF?
So glad I got the passthrough
Glowforge is interpreting two SVGs with the same size box differently!
Introducing Snapmark (September 2018)
Size issues
Glowforge on an iPad
Method for making press-fit parts?
For the newest of Noobs
How to make a simple, singular, cut?
Hanging on "Scanning your material"
How do I import an image into Inkscape and cut around it
Ai- image trace problem
Discussion of the September 2017 update (OLD)
How do I upload a file that will create a cut?
Is Glowforge a con?
What file type for cutting?
Is XQuartz software really necessary?
Precise dimensions
Is there a free box building website
Recommendation for where to start learning how to design
Resizing artwork WITHOUT keeping the dimensions
How to combine jpeg and text
Stray lines in engrave
Just ordered a pro
Stray lines engraving
Waiting on my Glowforge Pro
Getting started in design (newbie advice)
The app will not allow me to move the vector graphics design
Help scanning and printing


Thanks @dan!


@dan Have you thought about a forum user editable wiki? People share more resources than just how-tos. A wiki gives people space to share materials suppliers, links to software, tutorial content, a link to their laser related etsy store, design ideas and resources, and on and on. Why only capture one kind or resource when you could capture everything? And you hosting it grows your community and would presumably attract people who are not (yet) GlowForge customers to your doorstep.


It’s in the hopper! We’d love to do it, but the software team’s a little busy right now. :wink: And we’d want it to share a login with the forum to keep it civil and anti-spammy.


On the OpenSCAD front (I use OS heavily) there’s a library that makes it very easy to design things to laser cut. In particular, it knows about finger tabs, clips, captive nut t-joints, and so on. Great for making boxes and such parametric.

This post is also quite good, if a bit technical. But then, it’s about OpenSCAD generating laser cut files, so it’s great that it goes into tech detail.


@dan How does one mysteriously get granted “regular”? I have shared a number of things over the last year or so and now that I have my WORKING WONDERFULLY Glowforge, I know that I will have much to contribute as I already have quite a few things lined up to do videos and tutorials on that I learned from my previous experience. :slight_smile:


You have to do the Macarena while wearing a sombrero.

That’s how I earned mine,

Cannot connect to glowforge wifi

Just keep posting, reading, liking :heart: (genuinely) and interacting. As you are active, you will find more things of interest and people will find your posts of interest.

I (for one) am glad you are up and running after such a major start-fail!


Thank you! I now have reason to be in here more often… I just couldn’t afford the time to do it juggling single mom business owner life. lol


Active forum participation is the key, keep sharing your stuff and :heart: when you see or read something you like.


Looks like the link under

Glowforge Customers Training Center - Designing for the Laser
Unboxing and Setup Video

is broken. As I’m getting my Glowforge shipped now, I’d love to see that one.


Fixed. Try it again. :slightly_smiling_face:

How to get a file to cut instead of engrave

Thank you so very much for the help !!