Not cutting through with same materials as always

Hi Glowforge Support team,
I have seen many posts in different facebook GF user groups where people are having the same problem with their printer not cutting all the way through. We all hear the same “solutions”…make sure your board is flat, make sure all mirrors, lens and optics are clean, crumb tray is clean and free of debris in dimples. All of this has been done with no resolve to the problem.
My Plus was cutting at 170/full as my hot spot (and even 90% success cutting at 190/full) on 1/4 Columbian plywood and cutting like butter at 172/full with solid and clear acrylic.

I am now having problems off and on and having to slow down the cut speed in increments, now I am down to 155/full and not cutting through in many places.
Again, same material, same artworks, same setings, just not cutting through.

Why are so many of us GF owners having sooooo many issues. We are all in the same boat with the same problem. WHY?

I knoew the next step will be to send in pictures of areas cleaned, then pictures of the gift of good measure front and back, then it will go to private emails for correspondance.
Why is this? Why not share the problem and hopefully solution with ALL of us.

Please help us fix the not cutting through problem, it is a busy time of year for all of us.

Ross Squires


I also noticed a lack of power recently. My engrave settings used to be perfect and now the same
Settings yield a much lighter/shallower engrave. Same supplier of material and same settings I’ve been using. Just a random change of what seems to be power. Going to follow this for updates.

Hi Ashleyn. Just a suggestion, maybe this will get more direct response if you create a new “topic” or post to the Problems and Support team. Just a suggestion as I am not experiencing engraving problems, just cutting problems.

1 Like

If the Glowforge cuts/scores/engraves the Gift of Good Measure successfully on medium draftboard with Proofgrade settings, you can assume the issue is with the material you are using. If not, post pics of the results of the Gift of Good Measure along with the date and time.


If you have not emailed them on the issue before posting this and creating a second support ticket they will attempt to solve your issue here in public untill it requires personal information, if not they close the public thread and talk via email. There is no conspiracy there despite what facebook might tell you and with over 30k machines out there the problem is not as widespread as it might appear.

It sounds like you are using non proofgrade material? if so there is not much the support staff can do besides getting you to turn up power or slow down speed and other steps you mentioned like making sure the material is flat.

Do you have any old work pieces kicking around from the same material in the past? it is possible that one sheet of material could be slightly thicker than the other. A difference of a few 0.001" depending on your settings could be the difference between a successful cut and a failed one.

So if you post your photos and do the gogm test you will be ahead of the curve when it comes to resolving your issue, also posting the ~date and time/ time zone of a recent failed print could help them look into the logs for issues as well.


Kindly refrain from declaring “we are all in the same boat…” There are thousands of Glowforge owners who are not having this problem.

Hi Ekla, I was making reference to all those who are having issues with not cutting all the way through are in the same boat.
This was not trying to imply every GF owner has this problem.

“Failing to cut thru” is almost always due to dirty optics. The exception is machines that are failing, needing new tubes or power supplies. Failbook is full of whiners that have not followed basic troubleshooting steps.

My machine is three years old and still “cuts thru” using default settings for proofgrade materials. Printed some placeholders for dinner tonite just a couple of hours ago.

Hello @ross6, Thank you for reaching out to us. I apologize for the delay in getting you a response.

I’m sorry to hear that your cut through performance has changed. Thank you for letting us know the troubleshooting steps you’ve already taken. You are correct, the next steps for us to check the performance of your Glowforge is to have you run the Gift of Good Measure print and send photos of your optics.

Could you please the following?

  • Print the Gift of Good Measure on Proofgrade material, using Proofgrade settings.

  • When the print finishes, leave the lid closed and wait until the fans stop and the picture updates.

  • Check the completed print:

  • If the Gift of Good Measure fails to cut through, take a photo of the front and back of the print and attach these photos to your reply.

  • If the Gift of Good Measure cuts successfully, please try another print of the design you experienced the issue with, and let us know the results.

Please also send photos of all your cleaned optical components, with special attention to any damage you might find:

  • Both windows
    • The printer head window, on the left hand side of the printer head
    • The laser window on the inside left of the Glowforge
  • The printer head lens
    • Both sides of the lens, top and bottom
  • The mirror inside the printer head
  • The bottom of the printer head

Once we have those pictures, we’ll follow up with next steps. Thank you!

It’s been a little while since I’ve seen any replies on this thread so I’m going to close it. If you still need help with this please either start a new thread or email