How do I engrave and score precisely without the tray?

Screenshot 2021-11-27 184827
Screenshot 2021-11-27 184927
Thanks in advance for any answers. I am trying to engrave some cutting boards and they are about 0.6’’ thick. I am just stacking them without the tray in order to engrave them. However, it keeps saying “Material did not measure” (See image 2). Image 1 shows just how far off it is every time. Previously I was able to do it while using the tray even though it was more than 0.5’’ but it was a serious headache to get it to work. I have come across one other chat where somebody mentioned a problem like this, but they mentioned waiting on a ticket. That was two years ago and I haven’t found any other threads. Is there something I am doing wrong?

You need to raise up the cutting boards so that the surface is somewhere between the same height as the crumbtray to 1/2" above. This tool will help with that.


The surface that you are engraving must be between 1.5" and 2" from the floor of the Glowforge. Once the surface is in that range, use the set focus tool prior to placing your artwork.


I already have that tool and it is fine by a 1/8’’.

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Also, set focus won’t work. It just displays the “material didn’t measure” message.

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Try lowering the board a tiny bit, and then try the set focus again.


Thanks, it got me close enough. Not sure why it wouldn’t work earlier, it’s a difference of 0.25’’ between what I was doing previously and the 1’’ stand I made.

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I switched to a grid system a while ago and nail all my prints. I do lots of marble that makes lots of dust and so I chose to actually tape up my lid lens to protect it. So I blindly do all my prints and just use coordinates. My app screen is blacked out yet I can hit a corkscrew handle on point anywhere in the bed :slight_smile:

You have to think beyond trying to get the app to communicate a layout with you and instead, learn its actual interpretation of a layout.

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I’m glad you resolved it! Thank you @dklgood @ekla and @leith.sarkinen for your advice. I’m going to close this thread. If you run into any other trouble, please start a new topic, or email us at We’re here to help!