Maybe it's a good thing

I have gone through the emotions this morning, angry, depressed, and then debated on whether to cancel or not. One thing stuck out to me about last night’s announcement, and that was the detachable laser head and room for expansion. Dan has told us that it has been in Glowforge plans for a long time, which indeed it may have been, but that is stopping short of saying it has been in there since the begining, which I believe it has not. Now, this originally made me angry, I didn’t need my laser cutter to become an inkjet printer or 3D Printer, what was this mess. I saw it as investors saying “Great, you have tons of initial sales but how will you increase sales, once a customer has bought one, what then?” Which is probably a legitimate question, will the design catalog and products support a company in the long run, or will it slowly burn out? I then began to think, well since the glowforge is cloud based, we need the company to continue into perpetuity so it will continue to work without us having to hack it so it would work on its own. I for one am not one that will jack with the code of a piece of equipment I own, like phone or camera, and then something I paid close to $5K for like Glowforge, and it get’s even less likely. So, them adding ways to expand or upgrade so that the company can generate profits and survive made me feel easier about this, even though mind you I want the laser cutter yesterday, I will wait. Perhaps Impatiently, but I will wait.


Ditto here. Already have the 3D printer, but it bodes well for the company being around for the long haul, and not just being interested in selling us one unit and then moving on to other ventures a few years down the road.

(The waiting is hard though. Not gonna lie about that.) :neutral_face:


That’s a good point, though honestly at this point I have lost nearly all faith in them so I take it from the pessimist view. That maybe the head was originally meant to be fixed but they realized its get dirty, or breaks often. So the solution was lets make it detachable so when it does inevitably have issues you send back just that part for replacement, or sell a steady stream of replacement ones. Which pangs of the Maker bot debacle with their non-user serviceable print heads.

This is from this morning:

“The detachable laser module has me very concerned. When was this feature introduced?”
@dan Response:
“It was in the system in the original video. We glued the connector in early units. To be clear, the detachable portion is the head with the autofocus, camera, depth sensing laser diode, and turning mirror, not the laser itself.”


From my perspective, whether or not they want to make additional heads for it, it makes a lot of sense to have it easily detachable, and replaceable quickly. Theres so much going on in that one piece, that someone is bound to have to replace it, and instead of having to send in your whole laser for repairs or attempt to unscrew something complicated and have to manually recalibrate it yourself, theyve given us a very easy fix.

And the truth is we might never see anything else made to fit this connection, and im totally fine with that. If they made something just as amazing as the laser to work with it, Id be pretty stoked to not have to pay the 3k for the rest of the machine I already have.

TLDR; Its a great solution for maintenance, and has a lot of cool potential. I dont see a downside.


I was thinking the exact same thing!

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Hey Glowforge & @dan . Take your time. Get it right.
I want a machine that works, and I am happy to wait a few more months to get it.

I am sticking with my place in line, and I am impressed that you care about your customers so much. Hang in there.


If it’s any consolation, it has - my cofounder built a combination laser, CNC, plasma torch, 3D printer in his garage with an interchangeable head before we started the company. It was in there from the start.

I apologize for the delay. I can’t wait to get you your Glowforge.


The plasma torch is what really throws me.


He made stairs. They’re beautiful, too.