Engraving blurry on gift of good measure

Hi there,

I’ve been having issues with my Glowforge engraving.
Everything was working perfectly and now I’m not sure.
I’ve cleaned everything and checked for cracks etc. Nothing is wrong.
I engraved gift of good measure and this is what I got…can someone please shed some light on what it could be? I’m hoping it’s a simple fix.
You can see the issue on the 30 and 40
Thank you!

Your belt tension looks to be incorrect. When you cleaned, did you loosen the pulley wheel tensioner?


I installed a new belt and adjusted the tension as instructed so I’m not sure that’s the issue.
It doesn’t shift and is tightened properly

From the look you are getting, some little candle like flames. When that happens the laser does not cut as deep and leave a mess of brown on the surface. Looking at circle number 5 the belt has slipped a tiny amount and that distance could account for the wider marks as well.

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Is there any way to fix it?
What can I do?
Thank you for your responses!

Make the belt tighter.


If the belt length is at the correct length (46-3/8)

Which it is. As it’s a new belt cut to that length.

And the wheel on the right has been pushed all the way to the right.

As well as the carriage plate has the belt secured and tightened.

Are you saying to cut the belt below the 46 and 3/8 length?

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To me it looks like it’s a consistent problem in your x axis, I suspect either binding for some reason, debris on the rails, or damage to a wheel or a belt.

I had one really strange issue once where my head would bind at the same spot, turned out to be a loose screw on the gantry. I posted about it here:

So, if I were you, I’d turn off the machine, and then gently move the head back and forth on the gantry, If you find any resistance or “bumpiness” then I’d try to identify what the cause is.

But beyond that? I’d see what support had to say via email, they don’t read the forum.


There is quite a bit of possibility for overlap that could be done without cutting the belt shorter. It would not take much to increase the tension a fair amount.

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I tightened the screws. And still no luck.
I really need this up and running.
Would you recommend cutting the belt and trying to tighten it that way as I can’t tighten it any further with the Allen key.
Here is a picture of a ruler engraving that has always been perfect. I’ve tried it about 10 times and always the same result. It’s not the file as I again, I’ve used it multiple times and never had issues. Looking forward to your responses as I’m drowning in orders.
Thank you

I’ve never heard of anyone having to cut their belt. I’d reach out to support@glowforge.com.

Does your pulley tension wheel position look like this? I have never loosened this part as I remove my carriage plate without tools.

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You can adjust it here:

My other adjustment wheel was never able to reach the end before it was tight enough. It will stretch a tiny bit over time and will need the room to be pulled tighter.

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If the adjustment allowance on that idler wheel didn’t bottom out you don’t need to cut the belt.
What draws my attention is that it only happens in one spot. That suggests to me it is a mechanical issue.
With the machine off, I would slowly move the head back and forth over the full range of motion being particularly attentive to ANY change you feel in the smoothness of the travel. There are a limited number of components involved, Slow, careful examination of them should yield a clue. Include eye-balling the slots in the wheels the belt tracks in.

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Thanks so much.
So now I managed to fix that issue with a little belt tightening. But there’s another persistent issue I’ve had with a larger glitch.
It’s happening to everything I engrave lately, and I’ve done these before with no issue.attached are the images.
Please let me know what it could be.
Again, nothing is dirty or cracked. Belt has been adjusted. Glowforge keeps asking me for pictures but have no solution.

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Thank you for this!

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Have a close look at the wheels on the carriage plate for cracks right down in the bottom of the groove.

I just changed the wheels so there are no cracks.

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Would loosening the belt a little help?
So sick of this. :frowning:

:thinking: Hmm…
Laser off, open the front door and get down so you can see across the cutting board surface and gently roll the gantry forward and the head side to side to ensure the fan shroud of the air assist fan that hangs down below the head clears the surface of the board.

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