My machine is stuck on focus

Turned on the machine yesterday morning to make a cut and now I am stuck on Focus. The machine is making a clicking noise from the laser head.

Went thru all the steps that previous people experienced. Check the white ribbon cable, lens, mirrors and ect… Still stuck on focus.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.


tim, did you clean the smaller lenses on the print head, they can get smudged and dirty and people overlook them.

Yes, I went thru all the steps. Cleaned all lens, mirrors, and ect… checked the white ribbon cable.

One thing I did notice on one of the “lens” is one is fogged… it is on the back side of the glass. I am sure it is a closed case so I can’t get the back side cleaned…Not sure if the machine came like this or not.

hmm, interesting … can you clean it again, gently blow some heat on it (hair dryer) see if you can temporary clear it and see if the problem stops (even temporary)

yea that measures the distance – you’re definitely on to something

our resident expert @MyDogsThinkImCrazy may be able to offer you advice how to clean the inside of the lens…

I am just hoping I don’t have to ship this thing back. I am hoping for a quick resolution to this problem.

To add the light on the machine doesn’t even come on when powered up. The fan starts to wind up, then after a few seconds I hear clicking coming from the print head. I did clean the logo and position the head over it. I have done all the items suggested and still frozen in focus.

Thank you so much for your response and referral. I am hoping this is an easy fix so I can get back to work.

light? inside LED lights? that means the black cable may be wonky WITH POWER OFF - follow guide and make sure nothing pulled out

You can get a replacement black cable in a week or sooner from people on here.

My apologies, the button on the machine when powered on doesn’t light up at all. The interior “leds” do work.

LOL, OH! that’s NORMAL!!!

just for s&iT$ and giggles, why not try to re connect to your wifi (with machine on, hold down button till it lights teal:

Connect Your Glowforge to Wi-Fi

So if you get the print head clicking then you are connected to wifi and it found its printhead. Which is good and you can rule out print head or wifi issue when it comes to homing (this means its not your lens that is the issue). I am guessing you do not hear a thud with tension being put on the belt and the printhead moving to the center? The move description of what all occurs when you power on, the better. There is so many key clues that you get from the machines start up sequence. What does the app say? Do you have a screen shot of it?

I would just try re seating all 3 connections of the black lid cable. Here is the guide for that but you dont need to remove it fully. Just try steps 1-3 to disconnect all 3 pads and then steps 10-15:


Here is what is happening

  1. turn Glowforge on
  2. fan winds up
  3. machine doesn’t move at all, no thud as you mentioned
  4. print head starts to click
  5. nothing further happens.

screen shot shows the following
Screenshot 2022-03-20

I did do as you suggested with the black cable… re seating the 3 connections

turned machine back on and the same thing.
no movement, no thud, and clicking.

Turned machine on, held on the button and nothing… no light or color.

ok, lets try this - turn on machine wait till you hear the clicking noise THEN push button for 10-15 seconds – does it light teal?

yes it turned teal

excellent – do this next

                Hold down the button on your Glowforge for ten seconds, until it glows with a teal color

you did this, skip:

        Your Glowforge is now broadcasting a temporary Wi-Fi access point. Connect your computer to “Glowforge XXX-XXX” (from your Wi-Fi Settings)
        Visit the following URL in your browser:
        A .zip file should download to your computer

that is a diagnostc file you will need (maybe) - after that it done, if light is still teal, re-connect it to your wifi, and see if any differences…

okay did all that, downloaded the zip file. reconnected and no difference.

OK, sigh send the info to
hopefully its just your black cable, and not your laser print head.


last Idea, know anyone with a glowforge near you, swap print heads see if problem goes away