Lil' help? SVG Export from Affinity has incomplete compound paths

I’m having trouble getting an SVG out of Affinity Designer that has shapes “cut out” all the time. For example, here’s a donut I made by creating a filled circle, creating another, smaller concentric filled circle, and then selecting both and using the “subtract” option. If I export that as SVG and open it in GF GUI, all I get is the larger solid circle. If I open it in Illustrator, I can see and select both circles but have to do a “minus back” or “minus front” operation to subtract the smaller from the larger and get a donut again. And it seems to vary… some shapes I create this way export fine, while others in the same document do not. Any thoughts on how I can avoid this issue? Thanks!! (8.3 KB)
(AD file is in the .zip because .afdesign extension is not allowed)



Well, ya got me! I use Affinity, too…so just opened your file and made a second circle. I used the donut shape, though…but it also showed up like yours…a solid circle. Went back and made a second one…and did both the subtract and the combine op and ended up with the same thing. There are a few more people on here… @tim1724 for one that I know… that will know more than I, so hopefully they will chime in.

Yep, it’s a known issue. Has to do with fill rules.

@tim1724 worked out a solution for AD users:

Start here and read down a couple of posts…he gives an example:


You can also try saving the file as PDF. I think Glowforge might handle both fill rules correctly in PDF even though they don’t in SVG. Although it’s possible that I’m remembering wrong. (Sorry, I’m not in front of my computer to test it right now.)

In any case Glowforge really, really needs to fix this obnoxious bug. They’ve known about the big for over eighteen months and still no fix nor any word on when/if they’re going to fix it.


Thanks everyone. I’ll try Tim’s workaround today, but admittedly it’s a bit of a chore when working on a complicated design (the real file I’m having trouble with is much more elaborate than a donut!) Hopefully the GF team will get it sorted.

If you’re going to engrave it, I always just rasterize. Saves you from having to worry about varying software’s interpretation of SVG, and the Glowforge just has to turn it into a bitmap anyway, so as long as you do it at high enough resolution, there’s no downside.


Hmmm, I guess I need some help with my raster settings then. Here’s a sample I just did, with the same graphic as vector on the left, and raster on the right. The object was rasterized at 540 DPI. Both were engraved on proofgrade maple plywood using the SD Graphic setting (1000/full/270, raster also set to “vary power”). The vector comes out much darker, with slightly smoother edges upon close inspection. Any suggestions on how to make the raster look as good as the vector?


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Color matters with rasters on ‘vary power’. If you made the image black, it will engrave deeper. (From my understanding - provided that works the same as with 3D engrave which I use more than SD engrave)


Interesting. I did not make it black, but it was dark blue. I’ll go try it again with the rastered object colored black and see what happens!

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It converts it to grayscale and then takes that grayscale value and modulates the power based on that.


Once again my “in a hurry lack of common sense” is revealed to the Internet. Of course color(grayscale) would matter in a vary power situation! I can report that engraving an all-black raster virtually matches the vector.


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