Proofgrade draftboard not cutting through consistently

So I was running a test-run on some Medium PG Draftboard, and definitely had some issues, and not all of them user-related ;).

With the exception of one score operation, and one engrave operation, this job was primarily all cuts. The job was set out so that the draft score (just a marker for alignment) was done first and then a manual engrave was next, and then the cuts. All cuts were ordered so that those within another cut were done first.

As shown in the first red circle; the piece with the living hinge. Approximately 1/5 of the cuts for the hinge actually cut through. The rest didn’t. Some scratched the surface much less than a score would have. What is weirder about it was that the outer shape cut through perfectly. Exact same default settings.

The second round circle indicates another inner cut (inside a score, which is inside another cut). This also had a lot of sections that failed to cut through. It was mostly cut, and I was able to release the shapes by essentially hammering them out with a hammer/weeding tool to break what was still attached off. Once again, the outside cut worked without issue. Exact same default settings.

The cyan circles indicate pieces that did not cut through at all. Some parts didn’t even make it through the masking. The funny part is that I even ran a second pass over these sections, and there was barely a change.

In the upper cyan circle, what’s weird about this one is that the interior cuts worked fine, but the outer cuts did not.

I guess I will take some other peoples advice that I’ve seen here and and up the power 10-15 pews, it just seems to defeat the reason we buy Proofgrade, even if it is only the draftboard.

And yes, board was flat, and there was nothing on the bed. I had tested it beforehand with magnets and checked to see if any sections flexed when I put them on. I simply removed them pre-cut because there was no area the laser-head wasn’t going to be near.


I have had similar experiences. I hope you get more response/suggestions other than “the wood needs to be flat”.

to be fair, none of the other suggestions would matter if the material isn’t flat. that’s the first issue to solve.


Looking at the piece with the living hinge, I noticed a pretty good drop at the lower left (green circles), indicating that there might have been some warp in the material:

If the outer cut was before the hinge cuts, that could have exacerbated the problem.


Thanks for letting us know. There are three important things that allow your Glowforge to cut successfully:

  1. Your material must lie flat. This requires a clean, properly installed crumb tray and flat materials.
  2. There must be no obstructions, dirt, or damage preventing the laser light from reaching your material.
  3. Your design must be set up properly - for example, with lines that are fully on the material and that are set to cut.

It’s hard to know which issue might be affecting your print. Please thoroughly inspect your unit and design according to the suggestions in our troubleshooter, making sure you’ve cleaned everything listed there and double checked your crumb tray for debris and material for flatness.

Once you’ve inspected and cleaned, please try another print. We included an extra piece of Proofgrade Draftboard with your materials shipment for troubleshooting. Please print the Gift of Good Measure on Proofgrade Draftboard and let us know the result. If it doesn’t print well, please let us know the date and time of your print and send photos of the front and back of the print.

Thank you!

@forhorsman, did the solution from this post: Maybe I'm being obtuse, but something seems off here improve the issues you were seeing here?

Hi Rita.

I do believe it has. When I repositioned the tray my next attempt to print the same file was successful.


That’s splendid! Please let us know if you have further questions or troubles.

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