[Lab] Glowforge laser cutter early bird offer extended

John Weisberg jweisberg at sympatico.ca
Sat Oct 24 13:33:34 EDT 2015

You are welcome, Henri.

The company is promising some interesting technical advancements, such as how cameras are used. I think the real impact though will be the different business model compared to existing laser cutter vendors. Googling for more info about the machine led me to this highly negative thread:


The intensity of "Glowforge can't possible do what they are promising" attitude, mostly from existing laser owners and business operators, surprised me at first, but then the history of Xerox losing the copier market came to mind and it all made sense. The parallels are striking:

Still remains to be seen if Glowforge survive their early success and deliver enough of what what promised. If they don't, someone else will. I wonder if companies like Epilog have anticipated this and have lower priced machines already designed, or if they are going to be blind-sided?

Date: Sat, 24 Oct 2015 17:18:29 +0000
From: henri.kuschkowitz at gmail.com
To: jweisberg at sympatico.ca; lab at artengine.ca
Subject: Re: [Lab] Glowforge laser cutter early bird offer extended

Thanks John,Very interesting.

On Sat, Oct 24, 2015 at 9:41 AM -0700, "John Weisberg" <jweisberg at sympatico.ca> wrote:

I realized last night at the Ottawa Tool Library launch that not everyone on this list has heard about the Glowforge laser cutter/engraver. They've had a very successful crowd-funded launch (on their own, not through Kickstarter).  The special pricing was supposed to end yesterday at 6 pm PST, but their servers were hammered and orders weren't going through so they've extended the offer until Monday morning. Haven't heard an exact time yet.
You can check out the machine here:
That's a referral link - if you order using it you get $100 off, and so do I. You can always go directly to the site if you are averse to referrals and saving money ;)

I've ordered one, realizing that there are lots of risks here. I have 90 days to reverse the charges on my credit card, and beyond that the company has promised a full refund anytime up to when you provide your shipping address, in other words, when they have stock to ship to you. First units are supposed to be out in December, the last commitment from the CEO was to have all early bird units shipped by August 2016. I don't know if their success will make that easier or harder to achieve.

All pricing on the site is naturally in US$. Canadians need to consider exchange rate, shipping (3X the cost to the US), GST, and since the machines won't ship until sometime next year I figured 1 year of opportunity cost at 3% interest/year. I calculated some different options, may as well save you the trouble and post them here. I assumed A) shipping to Ogdensburg; and B) 1.36 exchange rate. First column is machine, second US price, 3rd US shipping, 4th C$ subtotal for machine + shipping * exchange, 5th tax on machine only * exchange, 6th machine + shipping + tax, 7th opportunity cost @ 3%, and 8th difference in price between units. So the Pro w/o filter is C$2,346 more than the basic. I hope the chart come out readable!

   Base $US 
   Ship $US 
   sub1 $C 
   sub2 $C 
   Opp Cost 
   $        1,995 
   $               99 
   $        2,848 
   $        407 
   $    3,255 
   $               85 

  Pro w/o filter
   $        3,495 
   $               99 
   $        4,888 
   $        713 
   $    5,601 
   $             147 
   $    2,346 
  Pro w/filter
   $        3,995 
   $            175 
   $        5,671 
   $        815 
   $    6,486 
   $             170 
   $        885 

Lots of discussion around the web, much fanboy, some unreasonably harsh. I wrote up a long post for a woodworking forum that was rejected but can post some of it here if anyone wants more info.
No affiliation with the company. I know lots of people on this list are interested in using a laser cutter,which is why I'm posting.

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