How many mirrors does a Glowforge actually have…2 or 3?

I was teaching someone how to clean their Glowforge and we discussed the mirrors. As we both also have industrial lasers, which has mirror 1 back where the tube is, mirror 2 on the edge of the gantry and mirror in the laser head, we could only account for 2 on a Glowforge.

Since the Glowforge tube is affixed to the gantry and moves with it, is the mirror on the left of the gantry behind the lens cover the first mirror? So it’s just that one and the removable one in the print head? Or is there another mirror we can’t even see in the same housing as the mirror with lens cover? Does anyone know the actual beam path?

  • Beam goes left through the tube
  • hits mirror #1, 90degrees to the front
  • hits mirror #2, 90 degrees to the right toward the head
  • passes through two windows
  • hits mirror #3 in the head(the only serviceable mirror) 90 degrees down
  • passes through the lens to your material.

So mirror 1 is the one we can’t see since it’s inside that housing nearest the tube?


I believe so. You can’t clean those since they are enclosed (as far as I know), but you can clean the window on the left that mirror 2 passes thru.


Mirrors 1 and 2 are both in there.


Thanaks. I appreciate the clarification.


The good thing about Glowforge vs the industrial lasers is that mirrors 1 & 2 are fixed and closed so they do not need attention or ever get dirty. The bad part is that if they ever do the machine nerds to go back to the factory. The two windows from those first mirrors to the head are however the first to get dirty and do need attention first if the cut is getting weaker.


All accurate.

I don’t think this has ever happened - they’re sealed up in there pretty tight. :slight_smile:


There have been a few where the mirrors were out of alignment and missed the window when the head was on the far right side, and had to go back to the shop. I have no idea how they got that way.

I have also seen help for those with industrial lasers that had to adjust them themselves.


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