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L26500, this many problems?

Discussion in 'Hewlett Packard' started by zmachine, Oct 17, 2012.

  1. zmachine

    zmachine Member

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    Preface: Very small sign shop, very low volume. Mostly do yard signs and decals but ventured into vehicle wraps a year ago after client interest. Just upgraded from a 5 year old Mutoh ValueJet 1204(loved) to an HP L26500 four months ago(now hate). The reason for the upgrade was to produce better quality and more cost effective vehicle wraps and larger signs.

    In the last week have had 6 failed ink cartridges including 2 black, 2 light cyan, and 2 light magenta, a Lc/C printhead fail, the color sensor fail and last but not least the gear assembly that rotates the media roll fail.

    2 of the ink cartridges (Lc/Lm) were the originals that came with the machine. The other 4 (Lc/Lm/K/K) were purchased as backups.

    HP has warrantied all of these products but has caused a 3 day downtime and a serious lack of confidence in them or this machine.

    Was wondering if this is just bad luck or if it has a known problem? Anyone else experience anything like this? Have only had it four months and put about four rolls of vinyl through it(like I said, low volume).
     
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  2. KevSign

    KevSign Member

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    Sorry for the problem. We had Z6100, L25500 and L28500 so far work fine. My L25500 only problem was plastic at right side keep catch adhesive media, after cut short these plastic and print very good.

    If you had that many problems ask your dealer to replace new printer, just wondering you may have other issue later with this printer.

    Good Luck! Hope you feel confidence HP Printer.
     
  3. chafro

    chafro Member

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    I am at 40,000 sq-ft in each of my latex printers and haven't had one single issue with them. One is L25500 and the other L26500 both were bought in February of this year.
     
  4. zmachine

    zmachine Member

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    Thank You for your replies.
    Well, just had another print head fail, this time the M/Lm, about 10 minutes ago......
     
  5. P Wagner

    P Wagner Very Active Member

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    Also make sure that your firmware is up to date. On the L26500, current firmware is 6.0.0.3. This is updated via the embedded web server.
     
  6. jasonx

    jasonx Very Active Member

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    Is your supplier giving you old stock? Inks, heads etc have shelf lifes and should be stored properly.

    We've had a few minor things but HP has next day support here and a tech is out to fix it asap.

    Usage on our machines to give you a guide:

    Substrate usage 8,133.54 ft² - 26500
    Substrate usage 84,678.82 ft² - 25500
    Substrate usage 99,036.37 ft² - 25500

    All three are less than a year old.
     
  7. ProColorGraphics

    ProColorGraphics Very Active Member

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    That sounds like some bad luck to me. I've had great luck with my L25500.
     
  8. zmachine

    zmachine Member

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    Unfortunately no, the supplies I have been getting have up to date expiration dates/warranties.
    I called Grimco about the issue and was told that they store them the same as all their other ink and that its a problem with HP. HP turns around and tells me its a problem with Grimco storing them. I don't really know who's to blame but ultimately I am getting screwed because of it.
     
  9. Jack Knight1979

    Jack Knight1979 Very Active Member

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    This stinks.

    I've been looking to buy a machine from Grimco, but I think I'll walk.

    I hope you get this all sorted out. Please let us know if you're able to track down the cause of your troubles.
     
  10. Suz

    Suz Very Active Member

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    zmachine,

    Sounds like you have unusually high amount of issues. I had more than most for problems too, I have the L25500. You seem to have even more problems than I had. My issues started with my Technician, who set the machine up incorrectly with the software and never came back again. There were problems that had nothing to do with the Technician too, but HP was good to help me and replace defective parts. My media roller was very wobbly, they replaced the end caps with next day delivery. All my print heads were bad, they replaced them all with next day delivery. Firmware update had to be done. Then after firmware update, I had a Cyan/Light Cyan print head failure. They replaced that one too. I was down a couple days and just bought a print head from local Dealer, while I waited for HP's free replacement. By the way, with the L25500, the Technicians(a) told me that you can lose print heads if you don't do the firmware update. I suspect that my first print heads were faulty out of the box though, comparing my first print head alignments with my latest ones, I see a huge difference in quality.

    If you aren't already doing this, you may want to consider leaving your machine running always, and just let it go into sleep mode when not in use. You can adjust the time that it takes to go into sleep mode and the HP Techs will make a suggestion for you on how long of a time frame to set it at. For my machine, they suggested 30 minutes, I think. This supposedly helps your heads last longer, has to do with the heat and the vacuum pressure which all affect the heads firing.

    Like Kev said, I'd think about asking them if they want to replace the machine. If not, hopefully they'll fix you and get you running. We dump way too much money into these machines to not get a return on the investment! I'm sure you didn't purchase the machine so you could just stare at it or show it off while it sits there doing nothing.

    Good luck, hang in there! The HP Latex are wonderful printers, but it does take some time to work things out and lots of patience when you are having problems.
     
  11. zmachine

    zmachine Member

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    Thank You for your input Suz.
    I must have had a tech with some experience because he updated the firmware on the machine to the current version 6.0.0.3 before actually setting it up. I also leave the machine on and it stays in sleep mode whenever not in active use, takes way too long to warm up otherwise.

    I have tried talking to the local Grimco branch I bought the machine from and they basically told me they cant and wont do anything about it. Literally told me "that its HP's product, you've got a warranty, use it to your advantage".
    HP has next day warrantied all the items that keep failing but wont do any more than that. Asked to speak to a supervisor when talking to the last tech and he said its against company policy to give out names or numbers of higher authority. This only fuels my fire and adds to my frustration about the lack of responsibility on anybody's part to help me. I know I am not the first and wont be the last, but its getting ridiculous.
     
  12. Suz

    Suz Very Active Member

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    Pat,

    I hope what I said did not discourage you. I still love my Latex and am glad that I bought it. People do have a tendency to post more when they have problems than when things are good. I think my problems were probably also stretched because I'm new to wide format printing. There's a lot to learn and my finances are limited. When running properly, these machines are a great return on your investment. I think the trick is to stay on top and not let any time slip by when you need to use your warranty! Get it fixed ASAP and get back to earning money!

    You have the advantage (I think) of already knowing how things are done, materials and techniques used, not such a big learning curve for you, which means you can get to the business of fixing things quicker when you have problems. However, you might not have problems.

    About lining through a contract and altering it, yeah, that can work if the other party is willing. I wanted to do that, but was told that the contract could not be changed at all if I wanted to enter into the deal. I guess it depends on how hungry they are for your business. :)
     
  13. Suz

    Suz Very Active Member

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    zmachine,

    YOU are very welcome! I have felt your frustrations and totally am with you on this. Keep at it though. At my first contact with HP, the Tech was marvelous. I did have his name, very helpful!!! But that was back when everybody was buying them up the L25500's like crazy still and everything was aglow! LOL! Then I did notice a very definite shift in the attitude of the last HP Tech I talked to. I was also told "no names" given, you cannot talk to same Tech next time you call, you get who you get.

    The reason for my last call was that this little silver nut thing (about 1/4" wide) dropped off inside the printer and onto the substrate inside the window. I called Tech Support to make sure I did my part in notifying them, was asked to e-mail photo of the thing that dropped off, which I did. Then the Tech said "nothing to worry about" probably just a part floating around in the machine when it was shipped new, just finally dropped.

    My response, "What?" You can't tell me what it is? Response: "Nope" sorry. They just dismissed it. Asked me if machine is still running, I told them it did that while printing and print was not affected. Well okay then, not a problem (their response). Well okay then (me), make sure you document this. Are you taking good notes? If my machine falls apart because of this part, I want it documented. Anyhow, long story short, I got the feeling nobody wanted to deal with me or the issue and that was my last call to Tech Support.

    I felt abandoned, I do admit. Wonder if it is just a sign of the times. It seems to me that HP has given their Techs (in Service over phone) a routine to follow with all of these calls and problems. I hope it is not a trend, as it sounds you got the same treatment.

    Posting here because I think they need to step up to the plate and go back to caring. They won't get more of my dollars if they don't. I'll admit, I'm a little irritated about it too. Not just posting to be ppist-ee, but for the record, my experience is I've seen the shift.

    Good luck, hope you can say soon that you are happy with your machine. I can say now that I am, but fingers crossed stepping on eggshells right now. Time will tell if I have a lemon or a lover! :)
     
  14. zmachine

    zmachine Member

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    Not a Problem Pat. My intent is not to scare anybody away from this machine but simply to get a resolution to my problem and make the public aware of the issues.

    UPDATE:
    However I was contacted by someone with some authority at HP this morning actually concerned about the problem. They are going to send a lvl 3 tech? out with full replacements and diagnose the problem onsite. Guess if you push hard enough, someone pushes back...
    Will update as things progess
     
  15. sowinski_t

    sowinski_t Member

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    hey zmachine, sorry to hear about your issues... that really sucks, especially when you can't really pinpoint what the issue is exactly other than "things keep getting messed up". For my part, I've ran the L26500 at the shop I work for about 5 months now and for me, it's been a dream machine. I guess the only advice I would give is that maybe you ran into a "lemon" machine... My girlfriend works at a different shop, and they purchased a brand new Roland and had 4 months of hell with it... Pretty much everything on it was causing an issue at some point. The most experienced tech they talked to, suggested they try to get a new machine from the manufacturer. Maybe you can swing one somehow? Good luck!
     
  16. Suz

    Suz Very Active Member

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    :toasting:zmachine,
    Good for you! I'm really glad the someone from HP is concerned about your situation. You are on a good path now, yay!!! Keep posting please, it helps everyone. I do think these machines run better when they are run frequently. Hopefully too, HP is watching what we are posting here and will keep their quality control in check. Good luck! Hope somebody contacts me about those weird pieces that dropped in side my machine that they didn't seem to think was an issue. I would at least like to know what they are and where they came from. I have UFO's in my machine.:omg:
    Again, good luck! :)
     
  17. zmachine

    zmachine Member

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    Well, supposedly its fixed, but only time will tell at this point.

    Had 7 box's delivered between both FedEx and UPS on Friday which made it look like they were rebuilding the damn thing. Guess I was right, the tech came out Monday and pretty much tore the whole machine apart and replaced all electrical components in it. They had come to the conclusion that there was issues with the electrical connections between the ink cartridges and service station. Printed some samples and nothing failed but it usually happens after 5 on a Friday or weekend any ways :smile:. So to be "safe" they replaced all of it to rule out chances of it happening again. I did received another full set of print heads, a partial set of inks and a cleaning kit for good measure.
    Was pleased with the tech that came out this time as he knew this machine well and stayed around to answer questions that I had and seemed like he genuinely cared about its performance.

    Will cross my fingers that it works as its supposed to now! But if anyone has media profiles that work well with Flexi and this machine I would love to know. I am still far from pleased with its output, my 5 year old Mutoh puts out better prints in my opinion!
     
  18. ProColorGraphics

    ProColorGraphics Very Active Member

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    I am not sure where to get the Flexi profiles, but I do know that with my L25 and Caldera, if you didn't have the color settings setup right, the prints looked like crap. Have you tried the HP Media tool online? Not sure if there are any Flexi profiles or not.
     
  19. J Hill Designs

    J Hill Designs Major Contributor

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    that machine is just like me! I stop working after 5 on fridays too!

    :thumb:
     
  20. neil_se

    neil_se Member

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    I've been having a similar problem, but to a lesser extent. I had 3 Y-K heads go in 2 weeks with pretty low volumes of printing, 2 in 2 days which caused me to cease printing as my replacement hadn't arrived. My supplier's tech came today to replace a board, cables and drop detector. Fingers crossed it's smooth sailing from here.
     
  21. Robert Gruner

    Robert Gruner Member

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    ZMachine,

    HP will get it right....and when they do, I suspect that Mutoh will become your bot anchor. :)

    Good printing.
     
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