Laser Head Lens - Can it be refurbished/repaired?

I am curious if anyone has tried to repair their lens instead of replacing it. I have a new lens finally on the way to me, but in the meantime I was wondering if anyone had ever tried that? The main reason I was thinking that is because when I went to order a new one, they were out out stock and was concerned they might not be available for a while.

I worked in optics in the past and know that certain lenses have AR (anti reflective) coatings on them, but was uncertain as to the specific AR coating that is on the lens and whether or not the lens could simply be polished instead. The AR coatings are applied to allow certain wavelengths through and prevent others from passing through. I assume this AR coating is blocking harmful UV rays from blinding people who are dumb enough to not use the laser goggles that come with the GF.

Anyone else have any thoughts or experience with this?

“Repair” lens? If it’s cracked there’s no way. I assume you have surface/coating damage?

If so, I would get super aggressive with trying to clean it. If you have another one coming already, then who cares if you wreck this one further.

I’d go after it with heavy solvents just stay away from anything abrasive. I found that lenses that look like they have been scorched frequently can be cleaned up if you’re just a bit more aggressive than alcohol wipes. I wouldn’t go straight for high end, goof off or anything but I might get a little bit more serious about trying to clean it.

1 Like

The coating is more than anti-reflective.

If you’ve worked in optics, you know the appropriate coating is actually pro-transmissive. I have no idea what that is composed of for IR wavelengths, but that is most likely what is on the focusing lens.

There are other sellers of the lens besides GF out there, YMMV but overall reports seem fine.

@evansd2 Tried that. No dice. It was really pitted.

But if I did try to clean it and polish it up would that void the warranty?

@ekla I’m not sure what YMMV is. Could you point me to a couple options?

Sorry. AR is a general term. It’s anti reflective to certain wavelengths and not to others. The coating you select will determine which wavelengths are transmitted and which are reflected back.

It’s short for “your mileage may vary”, which is slang for “this may or may not work for you”.


There are various sellers out there if you google “Glowforge lens”, I’d probably go with a reputable optics company vs a random Etsy seller. You can also message @yoyodyne2112 who has many hard to find parts.


I don’t think UV comes into play here as the machine plays on the infrared side of the visible light. If there is a chance that you really need the IR protection goggles you are doing something wrong even with a pro. When the material is actually being cut of course the bright spot is full spectrum but the lens is not in play at that point.

As the lens is focusing the infrared that is blocked by normal glass the chemistry of the glass would be a concern.