I wonder what other laser communities are like...?

I wonder if any other laser machines have dedicated communities that are as active as this one, and what the vibe is like there. Anyone here on anything like that?

@jbmanning5 I know you are a universal owner… any insight?


I am not sure about other laser communities, one thing I am sure is, they all are laser focused.



Have been part of a very similar forum for products from Inventables. But there were differences. From early on there have been benefits to participation on the GF forum. For example, members were chosen to Beta test the earliest units and some (like me) were chosen to receive a pre-production unit for evaluation many months before the first unit rolled off the line. Thinks like that encourage folks to participate.



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Biggest difference is in the topics of discussion.

In the OMTech community it’s daily talking about measuring power levels, tightening screws and belts, aligning mirrors, aligning red dot pointer, raising and lowering beds, replacing controller boards, adding chillers…

Here everyone’s talking about the cool things they’ve made, how to design things, and exploring novel materials. It’s a lot more focused on what you can do with the machine, rather than working on the machine itself.


Not familiar with omtech. Would I know their lasers by some other brand name?

Orion Motor Tech. They’re the generic Chinese lasers on Amazon and eBay.


Great question. I look forward to the answer. For me one of the reasons I went with GF was the community. When I first learned that support was going to be not “instant” I was a bit worried. Then I saw the amazing and accurate answers members give and I was sold!


Snap maker certainly does not (don’t get one, its a trap). Muse is all around a good laser but they do not have a community that muse directly sets up. I liked glowforge because of its community and a lot of my maker friends certainly gave me a hard time on picking the glowforge because they felt it was overpriced. After seeing the stuff I have been able to make and the quality of support, a few of those friends have now bought into glowforge.

Out of all machines (laser or not) that I have come across, glowforge by far is the strongest community facilitated by the company, in my opinion. Sailrite (industrial walking foot sewing machine) also has a really strong community but I think that is because having to manage sail repairs while out at sea can really bring people together.


Not sure about other lasers, but the Carbide Create CNC forum posts way less projects. They all seem obsessed with feeds and speeds. I might see one project a week go by. Not sure why that is.


My experience between Universal and Trotec is that the groups are Facebook-oriented rather than forum-based. The 3 brand-specific groups that I’m in – two Trotec (one official, one non-official, but both ran by Trotec) and the one Universal (not operated by ULS, but techs frequent it) are fairly small. The Trotec groups are about 4400 people and the Universal group around 1500. So just there they are significantly smaller groups than pretty much any of the Glowforge groups. I think Full Spectrum used to have a pretty active user forum, but they discontinued it, which upset many folks?

Like @dan84 mentioned, the biggest difference I see is the topics of discussion. They are much lower volume groups and more tech-centric, rather than showing off what you’ve been working on. Rather than the Omtech direction that Dan mentioned, how to measure power, alignment, etc. the ULS and Trotec groups aren’t as heavy on machine-level issues, but probably a bit more skewed how to best process/improve the processing of whatever material.


Haha. Feeds and speeds are life.

It feels like a more social forum over here. I think that glowforge has done a great job of making it easy to get cool results quickly.


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