Stuck Calibrating


Each time you turn on your Glowforge, the camera on the unit’s lid finds the Printer Head by taking a series of images, and these images are then used for calibration. The calibration is used until you turn off your Glowforge or cancel a print.

Calibration shouldn’t take more than a few minutes.

There are a few reasons calibration may take a long time:

  • Your camera needs cleaning
  • The materials in the bed are creating images that cannot be processed correctly
  • Your Glowforge isn’t connecting to the internet via Wi-Fi
  • Very rarely, it may be because of a hardware issue with your Glowforge.

While your Glowforge is calibrating you’ll see a status message in the Glowforge app Workspace next to the PRINT button. The statuses associated with calibration are: Centering, Focusing, Homing, and Scanning. If you see one of these messages for more than 10 minutes, walk through the steps below to get back on track.

Troubleshooting Steps

Try these steps one at a time.

  1. If you get a message that the camera didn't take a picture, please review the troubleshooting steps found here.

  2. Clean the lid camera, empty the bed, and watch the Printer Head move

    It’s normal for some dust to build up inside your Glowforge, including on the lens of the wide angle camera on the lid. When the lens is dirty, your Glowforge may not be able to take a clear enough image to calibrate.

    Also, some materials can produce images that are difficult to process. For example, highly reflective materials make images that are too bright to process.

    • Turn off your Glowforge
    • Use ZEISS lens wipes (available on Amazon and elsewhere) to gently wipe the lid camera.

      Wipe Lens
    • Remove any material.
    • Make sure the crumb tray is in.
    • Turn your Glowforge on.
    • If your print head still doesn't move, please contact our team and we'll be happy to help!
    • If your print head now moves: Continue with the next step.
  3. Troubleshoot your Wi-Fi to ensure it’s uploading images successfully

    It’s possible for your Wi-Fi to work well enough to run the app, but still need an assist for the calibrating step. For example, if the WiFi signal is poor, your Glowforge may not be able to upload the images it’s taking for calibration. Network challenges can be difficult to diagnose, but start with our Wi-Fi Troubleshooter for solutions to some of the most common problems.

  4. Still Having Trouble?

    If you continue to see a calibration status message in the app after trying to above steps, there may be a hardware problem with your Glowforge. Please contact our team and let us know the following:

    • Have you ever been able to calibrate successfully? If so, when did the trouble start?
    • What troubleshooting steps have you tried?
    • Does the head move at all while the app shows a calibration status message?
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