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Ink flow problem with my SP-300

Discussion in 'Roland' started by Designer85, Apr 18, 2007.

  1. Designer85

    Designer85 Member

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    Hey guys it's me again! Got the driver installed, but it looks like I'm not getting any ink from the cartridge to the print head. I can see the ink tubes and they don't have any ink in them. I bought this used from a guy and he shipped it to me with the used ink cartridges removed from the printer. When I reinstalled them it said something about ink filling or something but I'm not getting any ink to the print head.

    I don't know if this has anything to do with it or not, but when I did a test print with regular vinyl the print head looked like it was about a 1/4" inch above the vinyl. How can it print if it can't even touch the vinyl?

    Help!!
     
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  2. Mason

    Mason Very Active Member

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    It doesnt EVER touch the vinyl. It may need to be primed or cleaned or both, did you ever see it print before you bought it?
     
  3. ChicagoGraphics

    ChicagoGraphics Major Contributor

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    Yikes.......Never let the print head touch the vinyl or whatever your printing. I'm not sure with the Rolands but you have to do a pre-fill up to get the inks into the lines then into the heads.
    1/4 inch isin't that much, we have our heads set around 1/2" from substrate, was tired of getting a couple of head strikes.
    Good luck to you.
     
  4. mediaman

    mediaman Member

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    Do a complete pump up including the cleaning cartridges. You'll need two for an SP-300V. Perform this as though you just got a new printer and follow the menu prompts, which should also be in the User Manual so you can follow the steps. This procedure is very important. Assuming you paid fair price, you should find a Roland dealer who can service this printer and pay them to come help you properly set it up. It'll be worth the money and you can pick the tech brain about other stuff to make sure you get you money's worth. It will also give you the opportunity to build a relationship with the dealer who you may need in the future for routine work. Good luck and keep us posted.
     
  5. high impact

    high impact Very Active Member

    Exactly what mediaman said! Ink jet heads don't touch the media like a pc 60 or 600. Don't compare to thermal...you will love this machine if you keep it maintained and clean!

    Stay patient - a lot of learning curve but well worth it.
     
  6. Designer85

    Designer85 Member

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    So, the distance from the vinyl is fine, I just need to do a complete pump? I've got two cleaninig cartridges but they say "Sol Ink" and the printer has been upgraded to Eco-Sol Max. Can I still use the cleaning cartridges?

    I haven't actually seen it print before, but the guy that sold it to me used to be my contract printer for vinyl goods until he decided to get out of the business and I offered to buy the machine. This is the only vinyl printer he had and it did some fine work for me then.
     
  7. high impact

    high impact Very Active Member

    My cleaning cartridges also say sol-ink. All versacamms are eco-solvent ink as far as I know.
     
  8. Designer85

    Designer85 Member

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    Ok, I did a complete pump. It never prompted for the cleaning cartridges and even when I insterted them it didn't do anything with them, however, when I inserted the ink cartridges the Black and Cyan tubes filled with ink! I did a test print and it printed the black and cyan, but no magenta or yellow. I did a regular cleaning and nothing, a medium head clean and nothing, and a powerful head cleaning and still nothing from the magenta and yellow. Should I do another complete pump in hopes that it will work for these two cartridges or do the manual cleaning of the head with the cleaning sticks?
     
  9. Designer85

    Designer85 Member

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    I went ahead with another Pump up and now all 4 colors are flowing! The only issue now is the Black ink is leaving some significant gaps on the Test Print. It was doing it a little after the first Pump up an now is worse. Tried cleaning, head cleaning and a Manual clean and still no better. About to try another Pump up for good measure. Wasting a lot of ink, but if this works it'll be worth it to finally try out a real print for the first time. Will let you know how it goes!
     
  10. Designer85

    Designer85 Member

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    Looks like I should have left well enough alone...After my third Pump up the Magenta and Yellow ink lines are working well, but the Black and Cyan tubes aren't flowing at all! The guy I bought it from hadn't used it in a few months before he sent it to me so maybe there's a clog?? I'm in South GA and don't know of any Roland Reps that might could help. Any suggestions on either the problem or the Rep? Thanks.
     
  11. Ken

    Ken Major Contributor

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    My (uncertified) advice is to pump some cleaning fluid through the system.
    Hope you got a good deal on the machine...
    Try a private message to MediaMan..
    Ken
     
  12. Designer85

    Designer85 Member

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    Paid 7K for printer. He assured me he had relatively few problems at all with the printer, but like I said, it had been sitting in his shop for a few months untouched. Great looking printer though. Doesn't even have a scratch on it, of course I guess it could look like crap as long as it printed like it was supposed to.
     
  13. cdiesel

    cdiesel Very Active Member

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    Sounds like you've got some clogged heads. If power cleanings aren't helping, I've heard of some clamping off the waste tubes and filling the capping station with cleaning solution. Let that soak for awhile (few hours) and then try another power cleaning. You may need new heads, though.
     
  14. Mason

    Mason Very Active Member

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    Let me ask you this;

    What does the machine sound like when you run a medium head cleaning?
     
  15. Designer85

    Designer85 Member

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    What does it sound like? I can hear the buzz of the print head as it sounds like it's performing a head cleaning. I can shine a flashlight behind the drain bottle and see the drops of ink. Oh, and it does make like 5 or 6 short buzzing sounds in a row. Sorry, this is hard to explain.

    Would it help if I took some pictures of the print head, capping stations, etc, and posted them?
     
  16. high impact

    high impact Very Active Member

    You can find a syringe and remove the line at the pump and pull ink through if there are air pockets in the lines.

    If the ink is in the lines with no air pockets then you can try the capping station trick that cdiesel suggested. I have done that with great success. I think you may want to change the capping stations - if they are not sealing on the bottom of the head anymore then the nozzles plug up. I fought this for some time on mine until I changed the stations and now my machine can sit for days without printing and first print is like a dream.

    YOu are not supposed to touch the print head BUT you could CAREFULLY just dab the bottom of the print head with cleaning solution - WARNING! If you do this be very careful!!! I thought I would never get my nozzles to spray again and they cleaned up after a few soakings and dabs.

    I also recommend you find a dealer and have him come out to check the machine and answer your questions. It will be well worth the money spent.

    Good luck
     
  17. Designer85

    Designer85 Member

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    Apr 18, 2007
  18. mediaman

    mediaman Member

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    Careful about random cleanings. Medium and Powerful should be used judiciously! You should call Roland, get the name of the closest dealer and have it done right before you fry the heads. NEVER insert cleaning carts or ink during a set-up unless the machine asks you to insert. It is a precision instrument and I'd hate to see your untimate cost go up a few thousands 'cause you "tried things".
     
  19. Mason

    Mason Very Active Member

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    It sounds like you have the old pump set up still in that machine, they are recalled, and have been replaced with an upgrade to a high volume pump which has a much different sound. One of the symptoms of the pump failure is exactly what you are describing.
     
  20. Designer85

    Designer85 Member

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    Apr 18, 2007
    It could be an old pump seeing as though the printer is a 2003 model. I'll try to find a Roland Rep nearby. Thanks Mason.

    And Mediaman, good point. Don't want to spend any more than I have to.

    I'll let you know what I find out.
     
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