Graphic turning into a "gray" area when trying to engrave

Hi All!

I’m tying to engrave/cut a very simple file - in fact I engraved/cut it three times already with zero problems and now it’s just giving me a huge “gray” area when I select the part I want to engrave.

I’m using Silhouette to make an SVG, opening it in GF - then selecting the area for engrave (turns it gray) and the area for cutting… cutting lines are perfectly fine… I’m using separate colors for each part of the graphic in Silhouette.

Any suggestions as to what is happening?

Thanks so much!

Check the Engraving speeds.

There was a recent update that drastically increases the available engraving speed, but it correspondingly reduces the available engraving area. (The head needs room to slow down at the sides.)

If the speed is above 1000, you can reduce it to 1000 and dramatically increase the workable area of the bed.


Make sure the edges are within the engravable boundaries—they’re smaller than for cuts. With the item selected, they’ll show up as gray borders around the sides of the bed.


Thank you for the help, @Jules and @geek2nurse!

I agree that these are the first things to check. If you’re still having trouble after checking the engrave speed and position of the design within the print area, could you please share a screenshot of what you see in the Glowforge app when this happens? Make sure to include the rulers and the step thumbnails in your screenshot, and show as much of the bed as possible

To take a screenshot:

  • Mac: Press Shift-Command-4 and click and drag a box around your image. You’ll find the screenshot file saved on your desktop.
  • Windows: Click on the Start Menu and type “snipping tool”. Open the Snipping Tool > New then click and drag a box around your image. Click the Save icon and name and save your file.

Share the screenshot, and we’ll be happy to take a look. If you’d rather not post it here, you can send it to us at, and reference this community topic in your subject line. Thanks!

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It’s been a while since we’ve heard from you, so I’m going to close this post.

If you are still having trouble, please start a new post or reach out at We’ll be happy to take a look.