First Impressions and Suggestions

I got mine last week! I was going to write up my first thoughts and impressions here, with suggestions for improvement, but my notes turned long that a blog post seemed more appropriate:

Would love any feedback and other ideas folks have!


Love the comment

It’s like a Mona Lisa, framed in duct tape

Great write up.


The print head is a heavy dark metal bit of mystery

So true - there’s a ton going on in there!

Also please please let know of any times Proofgrade doesn’t cut through!


Thanks for sharing. It’s great to hear from owners who aren’t on this forum on a regular basis.


Interesting, in months of use I never had a failed cut on Proofgrade materials. (This is a prerelease unit)

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Gosh, I’ve been on the forum for almost two years and have read almost every post. It would have been so much simpler if I would have just waited for @chuck_groom to post this thorough and helpful review and not have to wade through all the thousands of posts to learn what you shared here.:grinning:

So much agree with what you say and think this is one of the best reviews I’ve come across so far. You write very well and keep my attention. Wondering what more you have to say about Proofgrade. I too struggled with the default settings for Proofgrade and have to test everything, but mine is a very early pre-release unit. While I have had issues with settings, I definitely think the Proofgrade as a whole is excellent. It’s good stuff and elminated a lot of work prepping and finishing materials.

I’m curious about when the design catalog is going to go live. I would imagine they are waiting for a critical mass of delivered units before opening it up. But I think they are missing out on some key energy by not releasing a few designs here and there above and beyond the stock designs that are in the catalog for those who get access to the app and a Glowforge now. As you said, the initial marketing video really sold us on some great finished products. And yes, people are making amazing things all the time and posting, but I think letting loose one of those super Glowforge only items every few weeks for mass consumption would go a long way to generating energy and keeping folks interested and eager during the wait.

Nice design you posted and thanks again! Looking forward to what else you come up with.


This is excellent – thank you.


One of the best reviews I’ve read, and definitely makes me want my :glowforge: even more :wink:


I have never have Proofgrade material not cut all the way through when using defualt settings, has anyone else?

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Thanks for the positive feedback, everyone! This is a really supportive community. I’ll follow-up more on the Proofgrade cuts.

For any Hacker News readers: this article is trending in; if it makes it to the front page I’d suggest the community can chime in with their experiences (and share cool designs!) to a broader readership. Go Glowforge!


This is an amazing group. Engineers, artists, teachers and just about any discipline you can name with one thing in common - we like to make things. The collective intellectual prowess here is a force. Throw a problem on the table here and watch what happens!

Great review.


This! With all the new settings & features, it would be helpful to have a set of “proven” designs that show off precision power, grayscale engraving, etc.

Semicolon in your link there…

Great write up Chuck. I can’t wait to get mine!

I’ll echo what others have said…excellent overview of the Glowforge written in an engaging style with an honest and optimistic perspective. Kudos!

Great read. Really highlights what we should expect.

Great write-up. Enjoyed reading about your experience!