Loss over time

I’ve been wanting my own laser for 4 years. I worked at a maker-space that closed down. But I also have quality standards, I didn’t want to buy a cheap Chinese laser and all the pain that comes with it. I also felt that while I could probably finance a big 3 (Trotec, ULS, or Epilog) machine I couldn’t justify it what was for me an active hobby. Yet another broken promise has forced me to re-think the central premise of my decision. How much enjoyment was wasted to save that money on what will be a 2 year wait (assuming there won’t be yet another delay…)?

So I did some math.

Everyone’s situation is different so obviously my reasoning won’t apply to everyone. I paid for my GF pro with savings. I also had previously had quotes for several big 3 lasers at various bed sizes and powers. What I realize now is that if I had put the GlowForge cash outlay into a down payment on financing for a similarly powered but larger bed machine I’d have paid it off by now and been producing fun stuff for the last 16 months.

That’s a really frustrating realization.

I’m going to take a look at power and size equivalent big 3 and go from there. I’ll have the refund cash plus a bit more, and financing can get me the rest. I’m done waiting on broken promises. Can GlowForge be something awesome? Possibly, but I’m over the constant barrage of careful marketing promotion timed to cover up significant product management failures. I didn’t buy a machine to look at pictures and get excited about it, I bought a machine to use it.


I know the feeling man. Super frustrating. Getting another laser definitely helps. Im happy with my $300 k40 in the meantime. You might want to consider one and hold onto the glowforge order. Its worked pretty well for me.


I agree with @takitus. the 300$ for a k40 is worth the money. and an awesome thing to learn on.

Where would you find that K40? - Rich

ebay and amazon have them. Ive seen them as low as $250

Yes. Thanks. This particular ad has 0 available and 746 sold! That’s a lot of brave souls like you. :slight_smile: - Rich

But honestly, how much tech knowledge is required to put one of those together and to deal with all of the bugs? I’ve toyed with the idea of getting one of these, but as someone with no tech/mechanical skills, I fear that it would be more of a liability/source of stress than an asset!

Don’t get me wrong - I envy and admire those of you who’ve been able to make use of these. I just suspect that it’s beyond the scope of my skills.


I have 2 Universal lasers…pretty expensive but not much maintenance or down time at all. Tubes last a minimum of 8 years (one has a 16 year old tube and is still running great!)
Beacon funding is who I used for financing through engravers network on my lastest machine.


Will be revisiting Trotec Speedy 100 and a ULS model for comparison. Already cancelled my glowforge. Time to move on to making stuff (and in 40 seconds instead of 40 minutes).

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Man thats exciting! Laser Power! Good luck!

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Whoa that looks like an amazing machine! Not in my price range by an order of magnitude but sure wish it was.

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Nice machine! I’m hoping to use my Glowforge to start a revenue stream to eventually afford one of the “Big 3” (Trotec, Universal, Epilog). Without a Glowforge, it will take years before I can justify the price of a machine like that.


I had plans to lease an Epilog (or purchase a 2nd-hand unit), then upgrade when/if revenue justified it. A month later the Glowforge came out, and I was sold.

Still am, too! :heart: :glowforge:


I was very seriously considering a Trotec Speedy 100, but the price I got quoted couldn’t be justified. The Speedy 100 flexx (CO2 and Fiber combined) is amazing, but I’m going to bet they’re something north of $8000 CDN.

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Are you missing a zero in the price estimate? I thought I had seen a price on Epilog’s dual source lasers starting around $60,000 USD but I could be wrong.


Haha, he did say north. But I think the Trotec 100 Flexx starts around $12k USD I think…

It’s substantially smaller than the Epilog models, though, because those only start with a 30" bed.


I did contact the seller, and they no longer sell this laser. Looks like the only way to get a K40 at the moment is to get it direct from China.

Those prices are way, WAY to far from my confort zone :money_mouth:


I fully admit, I was too scared to even bother a rep for a price. You’re no doubt closer than I am; even the cheap Chinese fiber lasers are $6-10K.