Inconsistent cutting with same settings

Anybody have a clue why the same exact settings, on the same material sheet, on the same design would have different outcomes? For example, The depth and power changes randomly. between prints. Nothing has changed from my end…I am going a little crazy trying to get consistency here for a product for sale. I have the pro.l

I don’t know you so this is just a general comment based on others. For the most part it just depends on how anal you are in setup. Material, flatness, focus, settings. The unit itself and the S/W doesn’t usually change.


Other factors like how intricate the design is, along with the expected speed can also factor in.

Very small, intricate details and the laser won’t get up to full speed - subsequently a deeper cut. You’ll also get deeper cuts around sharp direction changes.

1 Like

Welcome. The Glowforge should not change power or depth randomly, but you should double check power and speed settings before every cut to insure they are correct. Sometimes opening the lid can reset the power to 1 if you are using manual settings. If the power and speed settings are uniform, the problem could be what others are telling you, the intricacies of the design require the laser to slow down to make sharp corners.

1 Like

If same sheet with same design with same settings has a different result on a different location that gives two variables to investigate. Warping of material or slight raise for having a speck of something under it or there is a problem with your unit at different places in the bed. Keep trying to isolate a variable. Turn the sheet around and try the design again on a different spot in the bed


Going to see if it’s location specific. Literally same design same material sheet same settings. It’s not a corner issues. I can see the different cut strengths on the masking tape and I am super confused why. It has happened on more than one sheet. Think it could be that’s it’s acrylic?

Acrylic does have a variable thickness. It is cast and can vary significantly for the laser focus. I have gotten sheets of acrylic that are 3’x2’. When I re-dimension them, I typically measure all four sides of the piece and set for the thickest measure. The Proofgrade acrylic is consistent, but there can be variations that remain within tolerances for production. Double check with a calipers.


It very well could be since the average acrylic tolerance even on the same sheet is +/- 10%. (Which is quit a lot actually!)


Sorry to hear you ran into trouble, and I’m so sorry it’s taken so long for us to follow up. To help with diagnosing, may we please have a little more information?

  1. You mentioned that this is occurring on acrylic. Could you let us know what type of acrylic (Thick or Medium? What color?)?

  2. Does the issue occur on any other materials?

  3. As @marmak3261 suggested, could you please measure the piece you’re having trouble with using precision calipers, and let us know the measurement?

  4. Were you able to find any location-specific issues during your tests?

Thanks in advance!

This topic was automatically closed 30 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.