Consider Buying a Second Glowforge as a Back up

Hi everyone, we have a basic Glowforge that we use to do some leather engraving about (15 minutes of use 6 days per week) we have had it for about 2 years and I am considering buying a backup laser in case it goes down so we don’t have to scramble if something ever happens to the laser tube. Our business can more than cover another laser but is this being paranoid? Any thoughts? Thank you


I was just having that discussion today with someone, who’s whole business depends on the glowforge. - as a computer person, it’s always about redundancy!

PS: Welcome to the Forum!!


Not paranoid.

If you want it, have the money and the room for it then why not?

On the other hand, if you’re only using the existing machine for 90 minutes a week it really doesn’t sound worth it. How long can you afford not to have a machine if something goes wrong? Will you lose customers or just make a few people have to wait an extra week or two if you just wait to see when your Basic has a problem?

You are the only one who can make the decision.


For such little time, is there a GF user near you who could act as your backup?

I run two, but my main machine is 10 hours a day.


Thanks Mac! That’s what I was thinking , I just don’t like buying things for the biz unless they are a necessity and I only really need the basic but the 6 week wait time makes the plus really the only option for a back up because 4 weeks of waiting is way more than the 1k extra.

Wow! How long have you had it, I don’t think my basic has a ton of hours but Jan will be 2 years.

Thanks SQW, I don’t know?

This! I am on my second replacement in 6 months (maybe a little less) My business just picked up so quickly probably for holidays and I was on a roll. Well my replacement is now down and im waiting for another replacement. It kind of sucks that I can’t even run my business being sure my machine will get me pass 5 months of working. Now im stuck trying to figure out should i issue refunds or wait on the new machine which they have not gave me an exact day or timeframe i will have to wait. SUCKS TO ME BE!!!

Sorry to hear that! I just drove 10 hours 5 to Kentucky and 5 back, to get a used one, that could be an option for you?

I am in Virginia. Im not even sure that I want to deal with a second machine (GF) I honestly am starting to regret this purchase. I mean multiple replacements in the amount of a 5 month span. I dont think i can rely on this as much as I need. I mean who runs a business with unreliable machinery? The more people message me for product today the more upset I become. I actually did speak with someone today and they told me I need a replacement but can’t even tell me when I will get it. Here i am waiting on a email that tells me that information. This is starting to get old as I have been through this before but at least the first time they told me when I would get a replacement.

I used to work for a small telephone company doing IT stuff. They had a fancy high speed printer that they used to print their bills. It cost about $20,000 if I remember correctly. They also had another brand new one in a box in the store room. Sometimes a spare is worth it.


But if the spare will do the same then it is only a matter of time till you are back at square 1. I mean I get it, having one would def be better than not having it at all however I don’t want to pay thousands for a “temporary” or a “replacement” that’s refurbished. Me nor my business or my money has the time to play those type of games. Please keep in mind that this is not the first time I have had a issue and got a replacement. I said nothing the first time. Im just tired of it all this go around.

True. Although you could hope that you’d get the repaired one back before the backup one failed. To be fair, you have that potential with any machine. However, I expect if you can find a Universal or
Trotec or other commercial grade machine you’d be better off. You might need to keep some spare parts in stock and learn how to swap them out but at least with those machines you can field repair virtually anything in the box and parts are available so you’re not stuck waiting on the mothership.

Right! Im just super frustrated at the moment and don’t know what to do or where to go to still continue to fulfill orders so that Im not behind. The small business world is not for the weak but it helps when you don’t constantly have issues with your machine that you solely rely on. :frowning:

Definitely. That’s why a manufacturer that lets you buy the parts and service it yourself (or is something that someone else can service) is a good idea. GF is like Apple with a closed hardware ecosystem. It comes with perks but also a downside. If I were trying to run a business on a laser it wouldn’t be with a GF. Too much that’s outside my control or ability to mitigate risk.

Exactly! I won’t say it was a mistake to buy however it definitely was not the best option especially for running my business.

1 Like

This topic was automatically closed 32 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.