May 2017 Update


We’re working like mad to get you your Glowforge on schedule (here, unchanged), and it’s keeping us busy every second. We’re camping at the factory, studying reports from the field and the line, doing everything we can to make sure quality and production throughput hit our goals.

I get asked a lot, “Is everything going smoothly?” To which I smile wryly and answer, “No, things never go smoothly. We have a new surprise every week, sometimes every day, that threatens to delay us. Our team is working around the clock to fix those challenges as fast as they come up. We’re working hard to meet our schedule, but we can’t take anything for granted until your Glowforge is printing happily for you.”

Last month’s update was lots of pictures - this month’s update is for people who like lists.

What we’ve been working on


  • The timely arrival of enormous quantities of parts from around the world to our factory in Milpitas, CA, to be built into Glowforge units
  • The logistical process by where you get an email that your Glowforge is ready, confirm that you want it, and get it shipped to you.
  • The final legal language for the warranty, terms and conditions, manual, and more
  • Many, many pages of help and support topics
  • Preparing safety information for the Glowforge Pro

###Hardware and manufacturing

  • Identifying and eliminating every problem we find
  • Reducing the time it takes to build a Glowforge unit
  • Finding and eliminating problems with the assembly process
  • Make our final testing both faster and more comprehensive so we never ship out a machine with a problem
  • Statistical analysis on a few hundred Glowforge tubes to ensure every Glowforge unit can cut Proofgrade materials consistently (This helps with non-Proofgrade materials too, but Proofgrade materials are our standard for performance)
  • Chasing down a few final intermittent problems (e.g. an incorrect resistor resulting in occasional machine reboots)

Many improvements, including major improvements to:

  • Tests at the factory to validate production (the bulk of the team’s efforts right now)
  • Head homing
  • Camera alignment
  • Power control
  • Engrave quality
  • Fan speed management
    Note that many of these are not turned on for all users yet.


  • Maker Faire Bay Area is right around the corner, and it will be our best Maker Faire ever! We’ll have a bunch of Glowforge units there in our booth, printing up a storm. Even more exciting…
  • Many Glowforge customers will be exhibiting at Maker Faire with their own booths, making things with prerelease Glowforge units.
  • Bailey’s been producing some cool new videos like the premiere episode of “Hello, Glowforge” and this one where we (don’t) print a really cute baby.
  • Also, in this update only, you can see “Hello, Glowforge” Episode 2!

Tips, Tricks, and Tutorials

The best thing to happen this month wasn’t from Glowforge, Inc. It was from all of you. We’ve created a new section of the forum, Glowforge Tips and Tricks, that’s now open for business. It’s already full (and I mean full) of amazing submissions from prerelease customers and forum regulars.

Of course, Glowforge is preparing detailed instructions that will ship with your Glowforge so you can learn how to turn your designs into prints. Here, however, you can get simple, easy-to-read instructions to create original designs using a huge variety of software packages. Just a few examples:

We (Glowforge) don’t read and maintain these, so they may have errors and omissions and are not guaranteed to be correct. But they’re an amazing course in designing for your Glowforge across software from a host of different companies. If you have a suggestion for a tutorial, please create a new topic in Problems & Support letting everyone know about your request.

Last but not least, I’m going to leave you with a few of my favorite projects from this month that have been made on a Glowforge.

Discussion of this announcement is here:

Discussion of the May '17 Update
Weekly Highlights for the Week Ending May 13th, 2017
Where can I find the user Manual
Warranty Information