Problems with alignment

I am having problems lining things up.
I have traced a bed image and then tried to cut it out while not moving a thing. Paper is weighted with magnets. As you can see from my example the cuts are way off. I have tried to line things up on the bed by eye also and they were way off. Such as a domino size piece of wood.

I have a work around by drawing around my image with the shape of the object being cut out and cutting just the line on paper. Then carefully placing my object inside the cut out, hide line engrave image.

Any help would be appreciated

There aren’t any dimensions in this photograph, but being off by 1/4" is within tolerances currently.

Workarounds for alignment are either using jigs or Kentucky windage.

The jig approach is to use cuts into jig material and paying attention only to the rulers and ignoring the picture of the inside of the machine.

Windage is printing a regular pattern of something say + signs in Inkscape at known locations using a regular ink printer. Putting that in the Glowforge, lining up the SVG with it in the camera view and cutting it. Then you use the measured distances to offset your image whenever you are placing it depending on where on the bed it lands.

I prefer the jig method myself. Less fiddling around.

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Thanks for your help @markwal

@pam4arts The software on your Glowforge is responsible for ensuring that the print lands on the material in the same place as the preview. When you’re done with a print, let a new image load. If the print appears on screen far from where it was supposed to go, you may have an alignment problem.

Typically, alignment problems come from the material being closer or farther from the camera than expected. While the software is still improving, you can take these steps for the most accurate alignment results:

  • Use Proofgrade™ materials.
  • If you don’t use Proofgrade materials, use a precision set of calipers to measure your material, and enter the thickness in the “uncertified materials” dialog.
  • Use material that is not warped or tilted.
  • Place your design near the center of the bed.
  • Clean the area underneath your crumb tray, particularly the four indentations on the floor.
  • Reboot the machine. Alignment can drift over time, particularly if you bump the head of your Glowforge while removing material.

If you finish all of these steps, and find that you have an alignment error of more than 1/4", please let us know so we can investigate.