STL Files

Does anyone know if Glowforge will accept STL files for 3 D printing? If not, what are you using for 3D printing?

Glowforge is not a 3D printer. It does not accept STL files, but instead SVG, PDF, and raster image formats like JPG, PNG…

You can engrave into the surface of some materials, for that you need a shaded bitmap/raster image, and use the ‘vary power’ engrave setting to proportionately ablate material.


Ok Thank you. I guess the only way to create the raised edge on an item would be to reverse engrave it on a lower power similar. I was looking to do some projects with varying depths and hoping to convert files to 3 d but that won’t work. Thank you for your help.

Search the forum for heightmaps.
Basically you want to use 3d engraving, convert your image to greyscale, and the darker the area the deeper the engrave.

There’s a lot to read on the forum, what you’re asking for is possible, either by engraving (one process, very analog) or by using stacked layer construction (faster and more repeatable).

Dig deep, all this info and more is in here.


It will work fine, if you convert your STL into a raster/bitmap depth image, like a shaded topographic map. Lighter areas are engraved less, so (for example) you can leave the rim of an item (I have been making engraved coins) untouched by making that white.

1 Like

There’s a tutorial here:


This started life as an STL. :stuck_out_tongue:



Yeah. There are plenty of programs that will slice a 3D object in to layers and spit each layer out as a separate object/file. Popular way to make 3D objects by cutting each layer from corrugated cardboard. Only time I ever did it, I cut each layer by hand. Laser cutter almost makes it too easy.

The effect is awesome. I’d give you a hand, but you already have one. Nice hand. :slight_smile: