How many preorders need to be shipped in December?


#1

Does anyone know the number of units that were actually ordered before the October cutoff date? What glowforge (okay guy in the hot seat) hasn’t said is the actual number of units targeted to go to customers. Well at least I haven’t seen any numbers it would be nice to know if it is 500 or 20,000 it would at least give an understanding of the logistics and where you might fit into the shipping given the order date.


#2

Under 10,000. That was the number stated for how many freebies would be handed out when the first big delay happened.


#3

If you divide the crowd funding number by average cost for the three models, you come very close to 9,000 GFs. That is an incredible number of units to ship in one month. 9000/31 days = 291 units per day. This would be a super human feat. I don’t know how they will do that. - Rich


#4

Very good point!


#5

I guess it depends on the factory. We don’t know what company is building the GFs or how big. Henry Ford put out a Model T every 30 seconds.


#6

Having worked in a large factory on a machine that produced 74 products a minute I’m not worried about 295 a day. Industrial size manufacturing is so impressive and very few people ever get to see the scope of it


#7

And what we don’t know how many are already assembled

What I understand is that they are producing already some of them but they have to do it like handcrafted, because they are seeing that they still have some issues when they want make them faster, not with the Glowforge but with the process.


#8

Yes, a big company can do that, but it takes a lot of people dedicated to one thing. Picture a pig going through a large snake. After December - March the pig is digested, then the snake is only getting mice. That’s a lot of resources swallowed up for a short time. It just seems hard to do, even for a big contract manufacturer. But maybe I’m exaggerating some. I’ve been known to do that, especially after coming home empty handed from a fishing trip describing the one that got away. - Rich


#9

Except that it takes time to get a well tuned manufacturing process to scale up that much . Also, the cost of getting up there when you are not going to sustain that amount/day is not worth it.

My hope is that they will be putting some of these together already, tested, and waiting to ship, because if its not, then I don’t see how they are going to get the units out in December.


#10

PURE SPECULATION INCOMING.

We know they are already doing testing on assembly, which is how they are finding some of the tweaks they are making.

We know the angel investors tossed them an unrequested, but appreciated, spare $2 million.

So it is possible they have put in the time and the money for exactly that.

AGAIN, PURE SPECULATION.


#11

Indeed - all we can do is speculate given the lack of specifics. As others have commented, when some units are shipping at the end of November to put in feedback for December, and still ship ~9000 units in 2-3 weeks in December, it is to me impossible :slight_smile:


#12

Thanks for the reply, you know I have an issue with the “crowd funding” as this was really a presale of a product, I wonder if they say crowd funding to get around some of the state laws regarding sales or preorders…
A well I work in high volume manufacturing (that’s millions per month high volume) and they should be manufacturing the units now if they are going to complete testing and packing so they can ship in December. Most shipping shuts down towards the end of the year so they are going to have to be ahead of the curve… I had my doubts about the original shipping about (beta units etc) and I voiced them here turns out I was right…
Worst case they have 15,000 units to ship and they need to be manufacturing 35 units per hour on three shifts to make the 3 week window in December. Of course that assumes they start manufacturing December 1st…
I really hope they are moving on the manufacturing but who knows I don’t see them giving real data any time soon.


#13

If my memory/calculations serve me correctly they’ve sold around 15k units total.


#14

Wow that’s like 900 per US state. Though probably closer to 700 after international orders are removed I suspect. and yet we can’t even get 700 people on the map.


^^^^ shameless plug


#15

Wasn’t that $45 million total sales? ~$30 million for the pre-order and $15 million since then.


#16

ah youre right. 15k units. hit the wrong key on the numpad. fixed!


#17

The number keeps rising. $45M, $48M…The GF is wildly successful beyond any of their investors dreams. Now the challenge is to deliver on what they have been talking about. - Rich


#18

Given the complexity of the Glowforge, I wouldn’t be surprised if the majority of parts are already fabricated and assembled. For example (ONLY), the gantry/hopper skeleton mated to the vacuum formed case, the CO2 tube mounted, the motors installed… and (again, only for example) they’re just waiting for the final revision of the circuit boards to be installed.

There could be 15000 units sitting in a warehouse at 95% completion. We don’t know. @Dan has understandably been coy regarding their production, but it would make sense if it were true.


#19

Ah yes and don’t forget there’s an air filter on some units. I know it’s on my order. Not sure if that’s in addition to or as part the the millions…


#20

The air filter is, by all accounts, a separate box. So another big honking injection mold, another production line (or at least line sequence).