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Mimaki Is Banding, Bad Test Cleans

Discussion in 'Mimaki' started by Imminent Death, Feb 11, 2008.

  1. Imminent Death

    Imminent Death Member

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    Apr 30, 2007
    I came in today, did my normal cleaning on the Mimaki, started a print, and it came out looking like pure hell.

    The print was missing a lot of color and there was some serious banding. I've done 3 strong cleanings, made sure the heads (the little metal things with holes that sit in the little trays where you fill your cleaning solution) were clean, and the normal custody wash.

    On the test draws, the black and yellow look pretty bad (about half of the little rectangles missing). After doing all the above mentioned items, it does the same thing. The yellow looks a bit better, but that's about it.

    What are some things I can try before dropping $$$ on getting a tech out here?

    UPDATE: I was doing another strong cleaning as I was writing this and now the test draw looks better. About 1/4 of the black rectangles on the test draw are missing, and the yellow looks pretty good. I'm trying another strong cleaning now. It looks like the heads just may have been clogged.
     
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  2. xtremesigndesign

    xtremesigndesign Member

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    Oct 20, 2004
    try to do a fill up ink - then one more cleaning - this happens to me sometimes too. Don't know exactly why.... this fixes it tho...
     
  3. signguy95

    signguy95 Active Member

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    Dec 5, 2004
    Try a Nozzle Wash. That may help your problem if the nozzles are clogged!


    Jay
     
  4. speedmedia

    speedmedia Very Active Member

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    How do you do a fill up ink? I just had the same problem today.

    Thanks,
    Kurt Dietrich
    Speed Media
     
  5. GB2

    GB2 Very Active Member

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    Nov 15, 2005
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    Do a nozzle wash for 20or40or60+ minutes and do it again if needed.
     
  6. Imminent Death

    Imminent Death Member

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    Apr 30, 2007
    I'm doing the nozzle wash right now. I hope that works.

    I came to this shop after they got the Mimaki, so my "training" on it was quite minimal. Although, I have been able to figure out quite a bit in the last year thanks to this board and trial & error :Cool 2:.

    And I too am curious about "filling the ink". As you can tell, my Mimaki terminology is really lacking.
     
  7. speedmedia

    speedmedia Very Active Member

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    Ok, I figured out the "Fill up ink" under the maintenance heading. Tried that and still have a couple of bad spots on my test print.

    I want to do a head wash but the instruction manual is not very clear about what solution to use. Do I use the same carts that the tech cleaned out the printer with when it was installed? The carts say "Pre-Fill up solution" Of course they are expired as well so I assume they won't work? Damn Mimaki and their stupid *** expiration dates...

    Thanks,
    Kurt Dietrich
    Speed Media
     
  8. Imminent Death

    Imminent Death Member

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    Could you go into a little more detail about what you're trying? Seriously, I'm needing layman's terms over here.
     
  9. speedmedia

    speedmedia Very Active Member

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    lol.. I am trying to do a nozzle wash or head wash like you are doing..

    Thanks,
    Kurt Dietrich
    Speed Media
     
  10. Imminent Death

    Imminent Death Member

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    I tried the nozzle wash for 10 minutes and it looks the same. I'm doing another one right now for 40 minutes to see if that will help.

    The black "clogged" (or blank) squares on my test print are all along the bottom of the rectangle. I don't know if that pinpoints any problems or not...

    I'm looking through my Mimaki manual about the head wash... and I too am super confused. What exactly is the cleaning cartridge?
     
  11. speedmedia

    speedmedia Very Active Member

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    Yeah, I am following your motions and doing a head wash as well. I got her set up for 20 minutes to see if that does anything.

    The head cleaning from what the book says uses a "cleaning cartridge" I think that is the same as the carts that come with the printed for flushing the system but I could be wrong. Anyone?

    Want to get this thing back to tip top printing as I have a 53' trailer to wrap in the next couple of days.

    Thanks,
    Kurt Dietrich
    Speed Media
     
  12. Imminent Death

    Imminent Death Member

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    Apr 30, 2007
    Ok, I did a 40 minute wash and now 4 more black lines appear on my test print. While it's an improvement, it's not what it should be.

    I'm going to let it sit on a nozzle wash for 60 minutes to see what happens then.

    This sucks.
     
  13. signguy95

    signguy95 Active Member

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    Yeah, the head cleaning uses the same solution that you would use it you were to flush the lines. Install Pre-Fill Solution cartridge and do the head cleaning, when finished it will prompt you to insert color cartridge and then fill the lines pushing out the pre-fill solution.


    I think the tech told me that the nozzle wash was something that you should do for atleast 40 minutes, but repeated use might cause damage to the material on the head. Meaning don't do this cleaning all the time, because it can cause premature wear and tear.

    I would suggest a 40 minute nozzle wash, followed by a strong cleaning.



    Jay
     
  14. Imminent Death

    Imminent Death Member

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    Apr 30, 2007
    Ok... so it's a physical cartridge like the ink cartridges? I'm not sure if we have one around here if that's the case.

    Still waiting on this 60 minute cleaning.

    Lucky thing we're slow today.
     
  15. signguy95

    signguy95 Active Member

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    Yeah I don't keep any pre-fill cartridges either. You probably won't need them unless your moving, special cases of cleaning. I think you will be able to solve this without using them.

    I would think you should do a soft cleaning when you get done with the nozzle wash. That way anything that the nozzle wash has broken up in the head will be flushed down the lines and cleared out. Then do a test after that!


    Jay
     
  16. CL Graphics

    CL Graphics Active Member

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    Feb 24, 2007
    if you have the foam tip cleaning swabs (don't use the cotton ones) you can dip one in cleaning solution and gently wipe the underside of the printhead after doing the nozzle wash. If this doesnt help do the fill up ink as others have suggested. If still no good then you probably need new printheads.
     
  17. ICEdesign

    ICEdesign Member

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    Jun 18, 2007
    Well if i was you..least for next time before you leave for the weekend..make sure the heads are seated properly. Happens to me every once in a while too if the heads are seated correctly..usually an easy fix but guess your having some problems.

    umm best thing i could think of would be that cleaning cartridge..if you dont have one..i would recommend getting one..just for days like this :p
     
  18. Imminent Death

    Imminent Death Member

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    Apr 30, 2007
    Whew! Here's the story thus far.

    I did the 60 minute nozzle wash, followed by a soft cleaning... more lines are appearing, but only a few at a time.

    I did the Fill Up Ink and a LOT of black lines came up! While doing the Fill Up Ink has by far helped the most, there are still blank spots on the test square. There are (rough guestimate) 25 tiny squares towards the bottom that still show blank.

    Is there any final thing I can do to get it back into original working shape? SignGuy95 mentioned not to do these cleanings all the time, so I want to make so I'm not doing something that won't screw the machine up.
     
  19. Imminent Death

    Imminent Death Member

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    Apr 30, 2007
    Hey, guess what? Advantage just now called back on my tech support ticket!

    So they've told me that everything I've done thus far was the correct thing to do. I'm almost back to the point where the Test Draw is showing no "clogged nozzle squares".

    They recommended doing 1 more 60 minute nozzle cleaning, with possibly a soft clean if needed.

    I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

    Damn, our Mimaki was apparently really filthy. Learn as you go, I guess.
     
  20. CL Graphics

    CL Graphics Active Member

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    Feb 24, 2007
    Wipe the print heads with the swab and save yourself 60 minutes. It wont hurt anything as long as you have the foam swabs.
     
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