Proofgrade settings inconsistent

I’ve cut quite a few things on my glowforge now and am finding I have to tweak the preset so called proof grade settings to get consistent cuts any time I use so called proof grade materials. I cut this snowflake using proofgrade maple ply with the proof grade settings and there are quite a few spots that did not cut through. Am I to believe that I can not rely on the settings glowforge set up for their proof grade materials? Between this, the camera issues and the poor fitting and rubbing door (yes the machine is perfectly level) there’s absolutely nothing that sets this machine apart from a cheap Chinese 40 watt laser. Seriously glowforge, get your **** together. I can’t justify telling anyone I know to buy one of these till the machine we bought into is the machine we have.

Anyone else having the same issue with proof grade materials and setting?

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Well a cheap Chinese laser has limit switches so it can home quickly and reliably and has repeatable numerical positioning. You can set the speed in real world units. You can repeat a job straight away without waiting or lockups. You can save jobs so you don’t have to set them up every time. It doesn’t need cloud support so it works the same each day and doesn’t give up when you and the rest of the world are trying to make Christmas presents.

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Yet, you’re still here.


Yes for the hardware. No longer have any interest in the software. It has the wrong architecture.


I have run a lot of PG jobs and some Inventables jobs with Proofgrade settings and have had only one problem with not cutting through, which was when the material was severely warped. Based on the pattern of the cuts that don’t go through, this looks like either the material was warped or was sitting up on the edge of the tray. I have found that sometimes the paper on the faces can get in the way of the edge of the tray. I have been using strong magnets to pull the warp out of some sheets.
If your parts are perfectly flat and you are still getting inconsistent results, please let GF support know so that they can assist.

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Honestly I felt ill when I plugged in the Glowforge for the first time. Had I really committed to this outrageously expensive hardware with half baked software? It actually took a few days to be satisfied with the purchase.

I tell you what, it cut through cheap 5mm plywood in one pass. Something I was never able to accomplish with the K40, no matter how much time I spent adjusting it. That has made it “better”

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Yes the GF hardware is much better in most respects but the software seems much worse in most respects than the open source alternatives that you can use with a K40 , apart from ease of use for non-technical people.

My big pick is the lack of WYSIWYG SVG printing. It should be an option. In many cases it’s easy to adjust the way an image looks by tweaking line weight, and a very convoluted path to make it work for the Glowforge. Perhaps PDF printing will bring that to life.

Never having to touch Corel or windows again makes the Glowforge software better for me!

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Yes you should be able to import an SVG as a picture and get the GF to rasterise it to a bitmap at the appropriate resolution. SVG is a format for drawing pictures but it has been hijacked for laser tool paths. You should have to the option to treat it as cuts / scores and fills or as a picture to be engraved. When it is engraved as a picture it should rasterise it the same as browser does with line weight and fill, etc. Makes no sense to fill all shapes with the same colour and close open paths.

My guess is that requires some licensed RIP software they haven’t invested in.

No there is an open source Python library that will parse SVG and render it to bitmap and of course the browser itself can do it and there are open source browsers.

Thanks for letting us know. I’m so sorry that your print didn’t come out beautifully!

To cut successfully, there are three important things to check. First, your material must lie flat. This requires a clean, properly installed crumb tray and flat materials. Second, there must be no obstructions, dirt, or damage preventing the laser light from reaching your material. Third, 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, so please thoroughly inspect your unit and design according to the suggestions in our troubleshooter.

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.

The material I got was warped so I had to weight it down with magnets just to use it. I’ve had a number of prints with areas that did not go through and many times its in random places. I just know that going forward I can not rely on the proofgrade settings and will have to override each and every time I use proofgrade. I have found multiple suppliers anyway that are far cheaper and just as good quality, so after the initial bundle of material, this won’t be an issue for me. I will say this, I am thankful I bought this machine in the end because now that I have it and have made many things on it, I am quite certain I can justify buying a good, reliable non cloud based laser cutter for future jobs.


I have had just the opposite experience. With one exception of a badly warped sheet where the bottom masking didn’t cut, every Proofgrade cut for me has been perfect. I have used the Proofgrade settings for similar materials from other vendors and never had a problem. You may need to give your laser a good cleaning per the manual to be sure there isn’t a fingerprint on the laser lens or something else happening.

Cleaned all glass to be sure well before I posted this topic. I’ve been using trotec’s veneered board in walnut and maple and cuts are consistent but then I am also manually setting the speed and power for those. I’ve tweaked several of the settings for the remainder of my proofgrade material and will be using up whats left for testing of new designs. It’s just disappointing that there have been so many problems right out the gate after we all waited for so long just to get our machines.

Thanks for replying.

It sounds like these cut through issues were caused by warped material, but if you don’t mind, I’d like to make sure your unit is in good condition. Would you print the Gift of Good Measure on the piece of Draftboard we included in your starter pack of materials for troubleshooting? Then, let us know how it goes.

It’s been a little while since I’ve seen any replies on this thread. I hope that’s because everything worked out! I’m going to close this topic, but if you still need help with this please either start a new thread or email We’ll be happy to help.