Problems cutting through material fully

I’ve seen a lot of problems reported about getting through material, but didn’t see anything that explains how I might address this. I’ve seen this now on 3 prints of different thicknesses.

  • Material pinned down (woodpecker plywood)
  • Focus height pretty damn close to actual (I just re-calibered - .123 vs. .125 and .25 vs. .243)
  • Maybe a touch of warp, but barely noticeable
  • Recently ran calibration

I did several test cuts on squares (since the straightline speed seems to be faster and most problematic) to dial in my settings. On the 1/8" I’m using 210 @ Full and on the 1/4" I’m using 125 @ Full (Pro). Masked front only using transfer tape.

On the attached image, I pulled the sheet, realized that it didn’t get through and ran another pass on the outlines and didn’t get through it - just got a bunch of scorching on the verso.

This isn’t just a “little” miss, it’s like a ply and a half that didn’t get cut. Super frustrating when you spend the time doing a bunch of test cuts and trying to dial in the settings (not a fast process) only to get an unusable result. There are two center holes in the middle piece that aren’t even visible.

If it happened once, I’d chalk it up to some warpage and being too close to the margin on speed. But, since it seems to have happened on the last 5 sheets, starting to feel like I’m missing something. The vast majority of my “single small piece” cuts I’ve done have generally been fine and only a few minor hobby knife issues with puzzles I’ve done. But now I’m just wasting material and frustrated trying to gang up multiple pieces to produce some holiday gifts.

Love any advice for how I might debug this.

And while I’m asking, when do you use multiple passes? Given that all I got was scorching out of a full second pass, I’m not really sure what situations it does help out on?

Thanks in advance

Support will need you to print the Gift of Good Measure on Proofgrade material using Proofgrade settings. If it does not score/cut/engrave properly, upload photos (front and back) along with the date and time of the print.

We can only discuss settings for non Proofgrade material in the Beyond the Manual category, because Glowforge cannot troubleshoot on non Proofgrade materials.

That being said, here are troubleshooting tips to try.

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I am guessing you have a filled void in that area that didn’t cut, or a part with a lot higher density, like a knot. That is why the cut lines seem to just stop in those areas.
Avoid flashback by masking.
Two or more passes are used when you need to cut more deeply but don’t want to scorch by raising the power or lowering the speed.

Having a hard time believing that the last 4 or 5 sheets all had big knots. What is meant by a “filled void”?

I didn’t photograph all of them, but this is the kind of pattern I’m seeing on the back with some regularity. Flashback where it’s been “overdone” + clean lines that are “as desired” and then bits where there is a ply+that wasn’t cut through. At this point I’m trying to get the damn thing to cut reliably - I will mask the verso when I start getting parts out that I don’t need to chisel…thanks for that suggestion

I can’t believe that Woodpecker sheet quality, which I know a lot of people are using is producing this kind of result repeatedly. Intuitively, this “pattern” must be something fairly common that can be diagnosed - either operator error or an equipment problem. When I see a region that doesn’t cut through 6 cuts across a 4" region, I don’t see how this can be a simple warp or knot problem. Wouldn’t a second pass generally solve that - or at least show cuts get partway through?

While I know there’s a big PG push, some of the PG sheets I received with my GF are more warped than anything I’m seeing this kind of result with and I’m not sure how cutting a 2" sample is going to prove anything one way or another. I’ve successfully cut, scored and engraved a lot of piece parts.

I figured this pattern would have narrowed it down to a few things to try that other people had seen. Focus, too aggressive with speed, speeding up w/ multi-pass, I dunno. As a novice, I’ve just been going full power and playing with speed. The settings here cut 3 squares out perfectly that simply didn’t scale to the bigger job.

I guess I’ll just slow it down until I get parts done and deal with the flashback?

Sorry you’re struggling with it. :-/ I agree that those perfectly straight areas of mis-cuts going through the board in your example are indicative of either a void or thick glue spots in the wood. (Some glues simply can not be cut with the laser and manufacturers can change glue without notice.) Not saying it couldn’t be both and there was some bad material and something is wrong too though. I know WP is usually good, but it might be worth sawing open that piece and seeing what’s inside just to rule it out. :woman_shrugging:t2:

Oh no, I’m so sorry to hear that you’ve hit a snag. To ensure your Glowforge is operating within specifications, I’d like to have you perform a standardized print for us to review. At your earliest convenience, please perform the following test print.

  • 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.

  • 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.

Let us know how it goes!

Hi there,

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.

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