My air assist fan isn't working

So my machine is having terrible flare ups and I’m almost positive the air assist isn’t working. I’ve emailed support a couple of different times and they just keep wanting me to clean which I have already done. Any ideas on how to get them to respond faster? Is Christmas time and my orders are backing up. I’m tempted to see about returning the glowforge and going somewhere else!! I need an advice please and thank you

What material are you using? Is this happening with Proograde using automatic settings?
what do the flare-ups look like?

  • Shooting out to the left or right?
  • Shooting towards the front of the machine?
  • Straight up like a candle?

you say you already cleaned, did you clean the air-assist fan? if so, did you clean it while still mounted on the gantry, or did you remove it from the machine and clean it on a bench?
I ask because the first few times I thought I had cleaned the air-assist fan (from behind, while still mounted) I had only actually cleaned one side. When I removed it altogether, the hidden front portion of the fan was almost completely solid with residue, and the scoop itself had severe buildup as well. Partial cleaning helped a little bit, but the thorough cleaning solved the flare-ups completely.

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I’m not 100% sure either if the contacts on the carriage control the air assist or head fan, but I always make sure those are clean as well.

You are probably already aware of this but here is a good post on cleaning the air assist fan.

looks to me like it is still working, since the flame is out in front and not directly underneath, but seriously blocked up.

this pic from @PrintToLaser is very similar to what I saw when I pulled the assembly:
af9b726334133e65239264be7b5a9f60e76da197

full instructions with pics have been posted a few times by support, here’s one of them:

@jbmanning5 I haven’t had an issue with contacts on the GF, but dirty electrical contacts have certainly been an issue for me with the electric window/power door lock modules in my old jeep.

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That is from the fan on the underside of the laser head not working or working poorly (as far as I know).
The exhaust fan is the culprit when smells and smoke is escaping into the room, but the point of the burn is the little one under the gantry.
Hard to see and if you are not creative it may require unseating the laser head cradle to expose it.

Here are some pictures from underneath

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Does the little fan spin freely?

If not, dead fan or bad power to the fan. If you’re inclined, you could try powering the fan w/some external power source.

No it does not spin freely. This is why I’m thinking its bad. I am trying to get in touch with support to see what I need to do so that I can get back up and running. I am starting to drown with orders and have a craft show this weekend. I have on had the machine since September and already not running right. I am starting to get frustrated and ready to switch companies since I am not getting responses on the email

If you can get a vantage point over or to the side of the machine, you can run an operation at the front of the bed and actually look at the fan to see if it is running.

I’m so sorry for the trouble.

Thanks for posting those photos!

If you email support@glowforge.com to confirm your mailing address, I’ll send you a new carriage plate!

OK! I just sent an email confirming everything. Could you tell me possible how quickly this might get set out so that I can be on the look out for it and give my customers and ETA on when their products might be finished.

Should leave the office today, and I’ll follow up in email to get you the tracking number as soon as I can.

Unfortunately, it looks like your unit is experiencing an issue that we can’t resolve remotely. I want you to have a reliable unit, so I’m recommending we replace this one. I’ll be in touch via email to sort out the details. I’m so sorry about the bad news.