Maybe I'm being obtuse, but something seems off here

So… in an effort to further troubleshoot my PG draftboard miscuts I decided to do a bit of further prepping.

Following GrooveStranger’s idea, (Where's the origin?) I taped around my tray with the intention of using the Glowforge to cut the ‘live’ area so I could be sure of my materials placement. And here’s where I ran into some issue/confusion.

I made a box that was 19.5" x 11", which as far as I know is the current max size. I uploaded the SVG at 100% (created in Illustrator) and was surprised when it doesn’t even fit on the area the camera is previewing. You can see the box and handles in this screenshot, and how they are clearly much larger than the previewed print area.

Screen Shot2

Here’s a screenshot with box artwork removed for a better look at the tray.

Screen Shot1

So following that, I took a Sharpie and outlined the honeycomb area of the tray, under the assumption that the live area would have to be on that, and not the plastic around it. (Indicated by the red lines in the above image)

When I got another preview of the tray, the far left hand side wasn’t even visible, and the preview is showing me that the bottom live area extends off the honeycomb and into the handle itself. (Once again, see the red lines in the above image.)

On my failed dice tower, I had placed the board to the very edge of the honeycomb at the front of the tray, and at the most bottom left you can see how one of the shapes failed as the Glowforge tried to cut the shape essentially into what would be the handle of the honeycomb.

At this point, I’m not sure what to do. How am I supposed to even remotely accurately position materials so I don’t just waste excess material, or ruin my projects? Am I completely missing something, or is this a big flaw in my machine?


Same here with this issue. A cut I made the other day I had to stay around 18.5 to make the cut.

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It’s a shade under. I know in my experiments the top left corner should be set to 0.01 inch in from both the top and bottom

I think the easiest way to mark the corners is to use squares, or disconnected corners. Place one in each corner and nudge each one so it is as close to the corner as possible before turning gray.

Remember that the speeds of your operations-xespecially if there are engraves—will change the allowed edge positions.


Which is what I was trying to do, and is part of my problem. The grey ‘no print’ area never appeared to the left of top of my image, as shown in the picture I posted. That’s not a crop of the image. That’s a screenshot of the whole area the camera is displaying. It’s as if the camera isn’t seeing the full tray.

The camera does not see the entire tray. That is simply how it’s designed.

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Sorry, I misphrased that. I realize it can’t see the entire tray, but shouldn’t it be able to see the entire live area?

Did you try zooming out or using the hand to move the camera image up & to the left? (I agree that’s a workaround because at 100% zoom it should show 100% or more of the cuttable bed but it could help you get by this while you wait on Support.)

I’m not seeing where it’s not. Your pictures don’t show the rulers.

Just for comparison purposes, I drew a 19.499 x 11.999 rectangle with some grid lines and threw it into the GFUI:

Zoom is set at 100% and the rulers show that the full 12x20 area on the bed is being imaged. The grid is red, indicating that it sits within the allowable cut area (which is just a hair less than 19.5x11).

Non-authoritative answer: This is correct the behavior I see on my Basic GF. If I go out of bounds to the top or left, the object will turn grey:


At the bottom and right edges, if I go OoB, the object will again turn grey and the grey borders appear:


Hope this helps.

[Edited to add out of bounds examples.]
[Edited again to reflect my personal experiences in a non-authoritative manner. :try_to_be_helpful_but_not_authoritative: ]


Is this new? On mine I get the gray no-go zone on the left as well as the right.

Honestly, I don’t know. Edited my response above to indicate that this is the behavior I’ve come to know and love, as opposed to the “correct” behavior. :thinking:

Actually I would call it a flaw. I have been trying to get a response on the problem. I sent photos today of the great accuracy my GF has sometimes .

I’m having the same issue, camera seems off about 1/16th of an inch. for something that is supposed to be accurate to a kerf of 1/64 (my understanding) this is a big huge issue.

Except, they told you when you accepted delivery that currently (not to be confused with “forever”) there may be as much as 1/4" difference between the camera image and the placement of the cut.

They have been tightening it up and it is considerably less on many machines.


The camera actually does see the full tray, but the software has to first de-warp the image (fisheye correction) and adjust for the height of the material. You can see an example of the raw camera image at this post:

They GFUI software crops the image so that the top-left of the displayed image is as far left and up as you can cut. It doesn’t show the top-left of the bed even though the camera can see that.

If you add an engrave operation, especially at 1000 speed, and select that operation to move it around, you will see the left-side gray bars move in.


To get better optical alignment on a piece like that, place the piece right under the camera. The alignment inaccuracies get worse the closer to the bed edges you get.


Trying to understand the OP situation since it isn’t standard. The first picture looks like green masking tape over the honeycomb. What thickness of material did you enter when you did the first image of the bed without material? Perhaps that is the source of the anomaly of the design not in sync with the bed image.

Placing Proofgrade over tape on the honeycomb adds a non-negligible height difference to the material. Wondering if that is some of the issue in subsequent prints.

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(Note post deleted because I realized I didn’t directly Reply to this post)

I put my material as one of the PG veneers, as I figured that would be about the closest/easiest PG material to get the camera to come online.

Best would be to use calipers to measure your tape and enter that height in the dialog you get by selecting “Use Uncertified Material”.

However, that will only affect the accuracy of where the image is placed on your screen. The point where the edge of your object goes past where it will allow the cut, score, or engrave to occur is where the object will turn gray.

This is why I suggest using some small squares or L shapes for each corner. You can nudge them until they just trigger the out-of-bounds to occur. The top and left, (0, 0) position will always be the top left of the cropped view in your display, but it may not accurately represent where those corners will be cut–depending both on the accuracy of your height measurement and the variability they still have for camera alignment.

Imagine that the edge of the bed is at the spot marked “Edge”. If you have a thick piece of material, the blue line shows the angle it appears at to the camera. A thin material will be at the red line, and zero height is at the green line.

If you have something really thin, but tell the UI that it’s thick, you will “see” further to the side–but you will also have that much more error in placement. This is a parallax effect and why having the accurate thickness is so important.


Thanks. I understand what you’re saying, and understand that is a way to accomplish what I was trying to achieve in regards to delineating the live area of the honeycomb,

However I don’t understand why that would impact the Glowforge showing that the live area falls outside of the honeycomb and onto the plastic part of the tray on the bottom and right side. There can’t be enough difference in height between the tape and the imaginary PG veneer to throw the camera off that much.