Heating and cooling glowforge

Hope this is in right place. The only place I can put my glowforge is in my garage. It is a large three car garage. I live in Nebraska and the the winter time the temps can get real cold and the summer temps can be real hot. I do not want to heat and cool my whole garage. I had an idea that I am not sure is working. I had a carpenter build a box with insulation around the glowforge. It has a lid that allows me to open the lid to the forge and a door in the front to allow access to the front of the forge. It also has holes for the vent and the power in the back. The whole unit can come off completely as needed. When the unit was completed I turned on the forge and it was stuck on scanning. When I removed the box completely the forge worked like normal. I assume the box is covering something. Any ideas how I could use the box and get the forge to work at the same time? Or did I waste my time and money. Thank you in advance.

Putting it in a box will not prevent it from operating normally.

Stuck on scanning often means the bed image is cluttered/corrupted in some way. If there is material on the bed, remove it. If there are bright lights in the vicinity, try to share them (or move the machine) so their light doesn’t shine into the machine.

The other scanning issues are related to cable problems, which would not resolve by taking it out of the box.

Could be wifi related if the insulation has metal.

So you’re covering the wifi signal, most likely. If your signal wasn’t terribly strong to begin with a wooden box would easily block it.

Your larger problem is going ot be that when the glowforge runs it pulls a tremendous amount of air, and the ambient temp of your garage is going to be an issue. There has been much discussion about temperature management, I would search for @shop’s maker faire solution for the summer, he had a portable AC unit rigged up and it worked well.

As for the heating part, that’s a tougher thing to call out.

I like the idea of a room inside a room which I proposed to @pepper who was running in a massive barnlike shop.

TBH that idea is not vetted and I don’t know what came of it.


I had a similar situation… without ac/heater I am very limited to when I can run the machine as its either to hot or to cold. I ended having to build a small shed-like room. I tried a tent like thing INSIDE my large shop but it wasn’t adequate, ac/heater had to run nonstop (expensive). However inside a garage attached to a house you may have much better luck with that option and the WiFi wouldn’t be as much of an issue. I did it mainly for temperature issues but also because I live in a horrid dust bowl & I needed an area that stays cleaner. When I had the tent the WiFi worked ok. NOT inside the shed. I ended up having to run an entire new hot spot through the shed wall.

As for the WiFi, I have that problem all over my property so we unfortunately deal with this often… If you want to stick to the box idea, you need a way to get the WiFi signal from outside the box to inside the box. This is easily accomplished but you’d have to buy additional devices and basically use external antenna & run a wire through the box to another antenna (I am nut-shelling this in layman’s terms). Not sure if you want to do that or invest in the extra hardware buts its not hard at all.

As Evan already said it sucks up a lot of air, and the ambient temp was my BIGGEST problem. I have an unit blowing right over the top now but when it was in the tent I used a portable a/c or heater directed at the GF & it kept it cool/warm enough in the tent but only when running non-stop.

Sidenote: a concern I would have about your box & insulation would be fire danger. FIRST - you won’t be able to see the fire starting when it happens and SECOND, if the GF goes & you have a wood/insulation kindling over the top of it then its REALLY gonna go up. Fires do happen. If your gonna go all out & wire the box up for WiFi may I suggest a small camera too…that way you can keep an eagle eye on it while the box is on top & catch a fire BEFORE it totally goes.

Heres my set up. I have a screen in the upper corner I can see from anywhere in the room. I don’t leave it unattended but when I’m sitting down or have my back turned away from the machine I can still keep an eye on it.

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