Laser is Charring Wood while Engraving

I just got my 4th replacement machine. This machine continuously chars the wood in an uneven leopard pattern while engraving. All of the wood used have been Glowforge wood. I have 2 machines and I have used the same wood in both machines. It only chars the wood in the Plus model which is a replacement model that I just received. It is obvious that the issue is the machine and not the wood. Can this be fixed, or do I have to pack this up and send it back and get another replacement again?

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The same design but 2 different machines

I believe support will need you to print the Gift of Good Measure on medium draftboard with proofgrade settings to identify any problem with the machine.

You might want to check the white ribbon connection in the laser arm. Check the pins to make sure none are bent, and make sure the cable is completely seated. (clicks into place)

(Also make sure the mirror, lens and windows are clean and not damaged.)

All wood chars, some species more some less, even different pieces or different places on the same piece char differently. Summer wood will char more than winter wood. But no matter what, you are burning the wood away, and the Glowforge is just the first step in making the piece. I have used hand sanitizer and a strong brush to remove stain and char, and even bleach spray to knock back the staining, and then under pressure holding the piece flat, letting it dry. Both different species and different places in the same species will act differently.

A piece like this looks like a charred mess just out of the machine, but can clean up to this…

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The difference between the two is very interesting, not just the banding but especially the amount of soot around each engrave. Are you certain the settings were the same? With two machines, I’m sure they were, but those results are pretty distinctive.

I removed the charring on my first attempt at a grayscale engraving by first cleaning up the sticky stuff with rubbing alcohol and a tooth brush followed by soda blasting. Worked pretty well.

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I see you already emailed us about this and we’re working on it there, so I’m going to close this topic.