Glowforge not cutting perfect circles anymore

My machine has stopped cutting perfect circles. They’re more lopsided now and it is pretty noticeable. So far I haven’t seen any issues with the engraving accuracy, just the cutting.

Recently, the laser game off the rails. I read another post and popped it back into place. But since then I’ve noticed that the right gantry wheel spins freely and is not rolling properly when the arm moves. I think this may have something to do with the cutting issue, but I could be wrong.

I have already cleaned my machine and checked the tension of the ribbon(belt*), and its not loose. Any help is appreciated!
Thank you!

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it looks like one of the rollers / wheels are either dirty or cracked
rub your finger over them, see if there is a crack, or grit

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Check your belt tension as well as all of your wheels. Also, see if there is any debris on the rails or in the belts. Double check that you put the carriage plate back on track properly.


This is the right gantry wheel, spinning freely. Do you see anything out of the ordinary? I cleaned it with a wipe, but i can’t tell if those are cracks or not.

I think you need to check ALL the wheels, esp the one on the carriage (left / right) all of them work together, a bit of alcohol on a q tip also would not hurt, but it FEELS like one has a crack


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BTW the parts are sold online by glowforge, so no worries on it being replaced easily


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Thanks for your quick replies, @Deleted !
I checked the left wheel and that was fine. It seems like that’s the one that is doing all the work in regards to moving the laser arm, and the right one is just floating over the track(it is not spinning). If i put a little bit of pressure on the arm when the machine is off while i’m moving it up and down, THEN I see movement that looks like the wheels are working together.

@dklgood I will check the carriage plate again, but the tension of the belt seems to be fine. Again, I feel like this started when the arm went off the rails about a month ago. I followed the instructions to seat it back on the rails, and it seemed to work fine. Granted, I hadn’t , made any circle cuts since until today. :confused:

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Update: I took off the carriage plate and did some cleaning while I was there. The wheels are all in good condition down there. I reseated it as normal, and that seemed to do the trick. The machine is cutting perfect circles again!
I’ve attached a before and after.
Before I had removed the carriage plate entirely, the tension did not seem to be off. :woman_shrugging:t4: I am still a little big concerned about that right wheel on the laser arm not rolling, but as @Deleted said, I will pick one up in the glowforge shop for $7.42 just to be safe.

Thank you for all your help @dklgood @Deleted ! :clap:t4:


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