New User...Not Sure What's Going on with my Glowforge

Hello, I’m totally new at this…only had my Glowforge 2 weeks & have made several cuts & engraves & understand it fairly well but today I’ve came across something I can’t figure out on my own. I turned it on this morning like I always do & now anything I place in it to cut, is not cutting in the correct place. As an example, if I import a design to cut & drag it to where I want it to cut it looks great on the screen. I then send it to the glowforge & it starts to do its thing only to discover after it finishes, it is off just a little bit. Then after the cut finishes, I guess it rescans or something & I got the screen shot below. The red area is where I told it to cut but as you can see it cut in another pace, the black lines… what has happened?


Do you use “set focus” before you place the artwork? If not that can throw it off.


It visually finds the center - so it’s possible the big hole in your material confused it. I’d try again with a clean sheet and see if it centers up correctly. Also, make sure 100% that you’re not moving the head with the machine on - it will always lose center if you do that. Shut it off, replace the sheet, turn it back on and let it go through it’s start-up cycle.


WOW! That was it…the holes from the previous cuts was causing the issue. I did as you said & its cutting normal now. Does this mean I can’t cut one piece out of material, then later make more cuts? How would I get around that because I don’t always use all the area of the material at the same time? Thanks

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Just make sure you use set focus and watch to make sure the red dot lands on the surface of the material where you want it. Then place your art and it should be accurate.


Yes & thanks! I watched it do that earlier. The glowforge I have is not the pro but not the basic…its the one in the middle…do I still need to manual set the focus each time; I thought I auto focused…But I can do it manually each time too if that won’t mess anything up.

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I always use set focus for every job however I don’t use proof grade product. If you are using proof grade you don’t have to unless there are already holes cut in the material that the auto focus may land on. In that case it’s best to use set focus.


I honestly I haven’t had that problem in years - but if I’ve got a huge hole right next to where I’m cutting I’ll sometimes put a scrap piece of material in it just in case. Set Focus and double checking that it looks right will avoid it 9 times out of 10, and actually looking at the computer after the Set Focus goes and make sure your placement doesn’t look noticeably different takes care of that last 1 out of 10.


Only if you have holes in the middle where the autofocus will try to drop it’s red dot. But as the others have mentioned, using set focus is a really helpful, good habit.


Oh no, I’m sorry to hear about the trouble @honeyhillfarmer. It looks like @beerfaced and @deirdrebeth provided some excellent steps to resolve the trouble, that’s excellent!

I’m going to close this thread - if the problem reoccurs, go ahead and post a new topic. Thanks for letting us know about this!