Severe Print Distortion - Tried everything, spare parts?

My Glowforge suddenly started misprinting in a distorted fashion. Every design I do appears to “slip” multiple times throughout the print.

After reading previous posts, I’ve tried the following: Turning off to recalibrate, cleaned all mirrors, removed head and reconnect, inspected pulley wheels, removed carriage and cleaned air exhaust fan and belt. Nothing has worked.

I’ve attached pictures to display the condition of my 3-year old Glowforge, specific parts for review, and the misprints taken in between troubleshooting list above.

Any help is appreciated!

Long shot - in your third to the last photo, the belt seems to be riding high on the belt tensioner rather than being centered inbetween the top and bottom lips.


How thick is the material in the picture? I just wonder if the air assist fan shroud might be dragging on it.


Hello Kyle,

I’m sorry to hear about the trouble with your recent prints.

Thank you for including those initial photos and troubleshooting steps you’ve performed.

Is it possible one of the wheels of your Carriage Plate is broken? I know you mentioned you inspected the pulley wheels, did you also check the wheel to the right of the gantry where the belt wraps around? Could you send me a photo similar to this:

1. The pulley under the laser arm on the right side from the front:

2. The right side pulley under the laser arm from underneath:

Next, could you please confirm the serial number of the printer having the issue for me? The serial number can be found on the back of the Glowforge, printed on a sticker near the AC adapter on the right-hand side. It will look something like ABC-123-4.

Additionally, do you know the approximate date and time of the Home Sweet Home print?

Once I have the above information, I’ll take a deeper look and follow up with the next best steps.

Warm regards,

1 Like

I tried shifting the belt down on the tensioner and still experiencing the sliding print.

My cutting boards are 1.5"H - All my products do not exceed this height and seem to do just fine in my other machines. Thanks for the advice!

1 Like

1.5" will require the removal of the honeycomb tray. I am assuming you have the tray out and don’t need to elevate the boards.

I inspected the carriage wheels and all seemed to be in tact and rolling nicely, as well as the surrounding wheels. I printed the Home Sweet Home text between 6-7 November 22nd.

Here are the pictures you requested. Also, I turned my machine off and slowly moved the laser head back and forth - it does not move as smoothly as my other machines. Every 2-3 inches the head seems to horizontally hop - I inspected the belt and all seems to look normal.

Serial number: KWF-736-4

Correct! I only use the tray for cutting and proofgrades - 90 percent of what I do is with an empty bed.

With the machine off, do you feel that hop moving the head back and forth?

Hey there, thank you for those photos. I want to take a look at a few more things. It would be really helpful to get a look at your carriage plate, its V-Wheels, the belt, and the x-axis pully with the belt removed.

Could you please do the following?

  1. Turn off your Glowforge

  2. Remove the carriage plate from the laser arm

  3. Closely inspect the carriage plate wheels from the top for any cracks or other damage. Then please send us photos of your carriage plate, as you see in the two images below.

  4. Closely inspect the sides of the wheels for any cracks or other damage

  5. Last, run your fingers along the belt and let us know if you feel any wear or roughness along its length. If you notice anything damaged or out of place, please take a photo and attach it to your reply.

We will follow up with the next steps once we get your response!


Here are pics - I believe I need two new carriages with belt and air assist fan - my second (of three) glowforge started acting up with the same problem - I inspected both and my other glowforge actually has a cracked wheel - this Glowforge in discussion does not appear to have any defect.

Can you please send them ASAP? I need to fulfill Christmas orders.

I can help get this taken care of quickly.

Since it looks like we may need some replacement parts, I will move this to email. I will follow up shortly with an email requesting your shipping information. So keep an eye out for that.