Getting to know the Glowforge
Posted by
ryanjpedersen
 
Joined Mar 20, '16 

I have no idea what I’m doing, frankly. But I wasn’t gonna let that stop me from learning.

Set her up after 2 long years of yearning and pushed a couple projects through the pipeline. I’ve got some great plans, even some more complicated models almost ready, but I needed to figure everything out first, so these are pretty simple.

First I just made some coasters. I had drawn these pieces long, long ago, assuming they would be laser-engraved. Finally got to see that happen.

coaster02

With that done, I went strait to playing with power setting on some bulk card stock I have laying around (since it’s not proofgrade). I just used my personal studio logo as a test image. I wish the software was bit more intuitive, especially with saving designs, power settings, etc. For now, I’m just compiling a notebook. Oh, and because I got frustrated desperately hunting down people’s power settings (I’m totally novice so all the sliders and number presented far too many variables for me to understand): This was thick cardstock (.063"), full speed, 25ish power, 270 lines per inch, 1 pass.

Then, just because I was having trouble walking away, I decided I would throw myself into something that would teach me some lessons. I wanted to see one project from start to finish, so I drew a three layered earring concept on the spot that really didn’t turn out very good, but was a great learning tool. I wanted to really blast out the detail, see how busy I could make it, see if the laser was true and if it would look too cluttered (sure does). I didn’t want it to be maple-on-maple, for contrast, but maple is the only proofgrade ply they sent, so I thought I’d try to sand one piece and stain it. As somebody else said on a different project, sanding through the finish to the wood for staining is a pain in the ass, and even with just these two little pieces, it felt like a ridiculous labor for something that obviously wasn’t turning out anyhow, so I moved on. They make interesting pendents, anyhow.

Last thing I’ll say. My glowforge arrived pretty dirty. It looked like it was used a few times, and then cleaned in a hurry, with lots of fingerprints and smears all over the glass top. Not a big deal, I just cleaned it. Also, the door sticks pretty hard to the left side, some friction and grind when you open it, definitely doesn’t feel like you’re opening a premium device. I think I saw someone else mention that, too. Is that a standard complaint? Anyhow, it all made me think again when I noticed that in the software, after linking up to my glowforge with wifi, there was another approved user right from the beginning, a name I did not know. Googled the person and they seem to exist but aren’t affiliated with GF from what I can see. Maybe I’m missing something, but it made me wonder if my unit is a refurbished unit or something?

Either way, I’m super excited to move onto the fun stuff.


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