Scoring artifacts

I’m making some knitting needle gauges, but keep getting strange artifacts when I try to score in acrylic. If I cut it in its original orientation I get strange artifacts on the top of the number 2. On the other hand, if I rotate the image 90 degrees, the number 2s are fine, but I get strange artifacts in only 2 out of 5 sparkles surrounding some trees in the design. The settings are Score, Speed 300, Power 41. I’m working in acrylic, but that clearly doesn’t have anything to do with the artifacts in the final product. The graphics appear perfect in the preview. Oh, the source is a PDF exported from Adobe Illustrator, if that makes a difference.

Thanks in advance for helping me solve this issue!


Welcome to the forum :slight_smile:

If it’s your design, would you be willing to post it here? If be curious if it happens to anyone else.

In both cases it looks like the points have gotten twisted around. In the case if the sparkles there’s no need for more than the points at the tips, so if there are a few in between maybe delete the extras? That might be true for the numbers as well, but it’s harder to tell.


Often when i score, especially small things, straight lines become squiggles. If i slow it down, they usually go away. Never figured out how to correct it though.

I don’t know about the file, but my issues weren’t file based.


If you don’t want to share the whole file, I’d be curious to see if the same thing happens if you just copy the “bad” sparkles into a new file.

Sometimes with these machines, what you see on the screen is not what you get, especially if there are excess nodes or unclosed paths. If I zoom in on your second image, there still appears to be something going on with this shape.


It’s just a guess, but I suspect there may be something “complicated” about that path that is confusing the Glowforge software that has to translate it into instructions to move the laser around.

As for the numbers, I would convert them to bitmaps. I don’t think you’re getting any real benefit from scoring that font, and rasterizing doesn’t have the same issues that vectors can have. I have a little sales pitch for the church of always rasterizing engraves here:


Thanks so much for offering to help. The image is for work, and I didn’t make it myself so thanks for the suggestion of just sharing the sparkles. I have no idea why it is only the two on the left. This error is recurring. I tried several batches and every time when I rotate the image 90 degrees I get the errors in the sparkles and when I don’t rotate I get the errors in the 2s. Are bitmaps generally less problematic than vector graphics. I just assumed vector graphics would provide the greatest accuracy for the machine.

:Edit: Sorry, I didn’t realize that you included an embedded video. That is incredibly helpful, particularly the rasterize effect tip. I should rasterize the image and leave the cut lines as vector graphics, right? (1.1 MB)
sparkles.pdf (341.0 KB)


A community member referred me to your post saying we may have the same problem - but I’m cutting, not engraving, and I don’t have extra nodes. Here’s a pic of my problem - and you can see the trouble shooting I’ve done so far if you go over to my post if you want. But no solution. Off to try tech support on Monday. Misery loves company.

Scores are cuts that intentionally don’t go through. Engraving was a possible solution to this problem for @sparklink02, but that won’t work for @Sukey.

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I’m sorry, I missed the notification for this reply. I’ll try to take a look tomorrow and see if mine behaves the same with your file.

Yes, the idea would be to just rasterize what you want to engrave. Engraving an image eliminates some of the things that can go wrong when engraving a vector. But if you need to cut or score, you need to use a vector.


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