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Do you leave your printer on 24/7?

Discussion in 'Digital Printing' started by Kemble, Aug 14, 2010.

  1. Kemble

    Kemble Member

    Aug 27, 2007
    I have a 48" ValueJet. Had it for about 2 months now. Was just told by the tech that I should leave it on 24/7 so the auto clean can do it's thing.

    Just seams weird to me to leave it running 24/7. I mean, the fans will never turn off and it just seams like things would get worn/burnt out faster that way.

    or am I just being paranoid? I mean.... I am just getting into the printing aspect so I just don't know any better.
  2. cmaxdesigns

    cmaxdesigns Member

    Jul 11, 2009
    I have never owned a Mutoh but I am pretty sure you should leave the printer on 24/7 so that the heads don't get clogged. I have owned a Roland and an Epson Solvent printer which both have to be left on around the clock.
  3. Replicator

    Replicator Major Contributor

    Nov 19, 2006
    Sun City, AZ
    I leave my Roland VP-540 on 24-7-365.

    It places itself on standby and turns itself on for cleanings, etc . . .
  4. bob

    bob Major Contributor

    Nov 4, 2005
    You'll get about equal responses from the turn it off people as well at the let it stay on contingent.

    Here's a data point... For lo these many years, about 8 or so, I have turned off my ValueJet 1204 and its predecessor, a Mutoh Falcon outdoor when I'm not actually printing anything. During those years I never experienced one, as in zero, problems that were not directly attributable to normal expected wear and normal if not longer than predicted MTBF. That would be Mean Time Between Failure, a standard term used in virtually all technology involving artifacts. Roughly calculated as a factor of actual power on time, not calendar time.

    I turn the machine on when I want to print and tun it off when I'm done printing. I try to keep it as clean as humanly possible. I clean it on a schedule based on throughput not necessarily any particular time schedule. On those days where it might sit I always, every day, do a test print of a single line up to 40-some inches wide, depending on whatever scrap media I have at hand, of 1/2" squares of C,M,Y, & K. If it is idle for more than a couple or three days or whatever, which is rarely, I run a normal clean cycle before the obligatory test print.

    I have no data with which to compare my experience with a turned on all the time machine other than what I might glean from this and other sites. I don't seem to experience even a fraction of the problems that others regularly report. I have also save a pant load of money not buying ink to be used in what appears to me to be way too much cleaning.

    As noted, this is but one data point. Your mileage may vary.
  5. CheapVehicleWrap

    CheapVehicleWrap Very Active Member

    Dec 2, 2008
    Investigate the "sleep" mode in your manual. You'll have to keep the pinch rollers closed in order for it to wake and clean (stupidly) most likely as on a 1614 valuejet.
  6. Kemble

    Kemble Member

    Aug 27, 2007
    Thanks Bob for your post. I think that's a pretty good idea to run a test line of CMYK during those days when I'm not running the machine, hopefully there wont be many of those days :p
  7. Kemble

    Kemble Member

    Aug 27, 2007
    Hrmmm thanks wraps, I'll look into that.
  8. heyskull

    heyskull Very Active Member

    Sep 2, 2007
    I don't think you have understood!
    The machine needs to be left switched on at the plug but it doesn't need to be turned on at the button on the fascia.
    It will do the cleaning cycle automatically.
    Also keep some material in the machine with the lever down as it won't do a cleaning cycle unless their is.

    Hope this helps
  9. AUTO-FX

    AUTO-FX Very Active Member

    Feb 14, 2010
    i have a falcon outdoor jr, which i leave on always, but my machine does not perform an auto clean function.Is it supposed to?
    each morning i send a test print like Bob does and i have no problems. i am wondering if anyone knows how i could set my computer to send that test print on a set schedule so i dont have to worry about it?
  10. FatCat

    FatCat Very Active Member

    Feb 12, 2007
    Columbus, Ohio
    I follow a similar routine as Bob's. The eco-solvent ink for Mutoh is very forgiving and I've left my machine off for up to 4 days (over holidays) with no ill-effects. However, I take care that everything is always as clean as possible and likewise all parts are up to spec and functioning correctly.
  11. Techman

    Techman Major Contributor

    Jun 24, 2003
    I have an older encad.

    I unplug it when not in use. Sometimes it sits a week or two. Never had a problem with it restarting and printing right away.
  12. TheSnowman

    TheSnowman Major Contributor

    Aug 28, 2007
    Mimaki is turned on when I need to print stuff, and stays on all day till I go home. At night, it's off (on the front panel) but there is a master switch on the back, that always stays on.
  13. Kemble

    Kemble Member

    Aug 27, 2007
    There is no other switch/button on my printer other than the power button on the fascia. My machine is the 48" ValueJet from SignWarehouse.

    The machine has several fans underneath it blowing out. My biggest concern is that over the next few months/years LOTS of dust will build up inside the machine. The air has got to enter from somewhere. And you all know what I'm talking about, it doesn't take log for a computer to get filled up with dust. The only difference is you can take a computer case off to clean it.
  14. Graphics2u

    Graphics2u Very Active Member

    Jan 31, 2007
    I'm not sure heyskull is talking about a Mutoh because as you say there is only the one switch and if it's off nothing will happen.

    I know what you mean about the fans constantly running. I have a 1304 that is left on 24/7 and that bugs me also. Here's what I understand about the sleep mode and auto cleaning.

    1. In normal Print mode you can set a auto cleaning time interval in the setup menu.

    2. In sleep mode there is a different auto cleaning schedule that needs to be set in the menu.

    3. Here's the part I don't like, the printer will only enter sleep mode (which basically shuts it down except for auto cleaning) by manual putting it into sleep mode from the control panel. Kind of a hassle to always remember to do that. Why it can't be set up to just automatically go to sleep after so much time, I Don't Know!

    The problem with that is the fans will run constantly unless it's in sleep mode. To me that relates to much more wear and tear on the fans and other electronics on it. You can set it to shut the fans off at a set amount of time after a print has finished however they come back on at the next auto cleaning (and I think also when you lift the lever for the pinch rollers) and stay on until you print with it again whether that's in 5 minutes or 3 days. Seems like a simple change in the firmware could solve this problem of the fans running constantly.

    If I'm wrong on my understanding of how the printer operates the fans and sleep mode, someone please tell me, I'd love to have the fans just shut off after so much time of inactivity.
  15. J Hill Designs

    J Hill Designs Major Contributor

    Sep 24, 2004
    I'm with bob on this one - OCE CS6060 - off when not printing (up to 4 days) - test print daily
  16. petepaz

    petepaz Major Contributor

    Feb 14, 2007

  17. Edserv

    Edserv Member

    Feb 22, 2009
    We've owned the 48" VJ since mid-2008. NEVER left it on over the weekends. Have cleaned out the valves when closing down for more than 4 days. But have never had problems.

    I think, from my experience, as long as you start it and clean it every 3 or 4 days, you should be fine. More than 3 or 4 days, wash out the inks (call Sign Warehouse for instructions) and be careful to follow instructions. From what I've heard, dried ink lines suck.

    Good luck,
    Tsunami Wraps Dot Com
  18. trakers

    trakers Very Active Member

    Mar 31, 2007
    For some anecdotal evidence, up until now we always left the machine (1304) on 24/7 (In sleep mode when not printing). The other Friday our power company was down so I turned off the machine for the weekend. Turned it back on on Monday and worked perfectly. Have been shutting it down overnight and over the weekends ever since.

    Saves a minuscule amount of ink as even when we left it on we had it on a 24hr clean cycle, but more importantly gets it off the grid when I am not there to physically unplug it during thunderstorms, brownouts, etc.
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2010
  19. fmg

    fmg Very Active Member

    Dec 14, 2009
    24/7 /365 unless parts are being replaced.
  20. rushworks graphics

    rushworks graphics Very Active Member

    Jun 29, 2010

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