Illustrator single line as two paths

Hi Everybody!

I got my Glowforge a few weeks back and have been playing and exploring with simple design prints. The laser and interface have been amazing; my biggest limitation has been with illustrator.

Specifically, I’m having trouble with a design where illustrator seems to have interpreted a series of single drawn lines as doubles - one on the inside of the drawn line, one on the outside. When my Glowforge prints, it’s essentially lasering the path twice.

Here’s a screenshot of the tricky spot in Illustrator:

See the two paths? When I try to delete one they both disappear. If anyone has some recommendations I would be grateful for the advice!


here is a fast one path outline. Not sure if it this what you are looking for.


I’m guessing auto-traced? A few ways around it. You can hit “ignore white” when tracing. That’s the easiest way.

Or, when it’s done tracing, hit expand so that you can get to the paths in question. Then delete the appropriate path(s).

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Auto-trace: Correct. And you nailed it. I went back in and found an option to “Release Compound Trace” which showed me that the inside line was essentially a white filled object - if that makes sense?

Either way, thanks. I think this is what I needed.

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Makes sense. It sees the boundaries of everything and wants to trace the whole image, including making the white areas as shapes. If you open the image trace window, then click advanced options, you should see an ignore white option. That will help eliminate that. You can also specify whether you want strokes, fills, or both.

Yes, you have two vector lines. You can tell because your image is showing a set of anchors on the inside and outside as opposed to just a single set down the middle.

For the file you already have, you can delete one of the two lines by using the direct selection tool (white arrow).
It’s under the regular black selection arrow or the keyboard shortcut “a”. With white arrow active, click on one of your anchors in the line you don’t want (the little blue squares), it should turn white, hit delete twice. First delete will erase the anchor point you selected, hitting delete immediately again will delete the rest of that path.

If you’d like to avoid this in the future, tell the trace dialog you want strokes instead of shapes, here’s an Adobe forum topic on the matter: