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Printhead DX4 Mimaki JV3

Discussion in 'Digital Printing' started by Convex Signs, May 23, 2012.

  1. Convex Signs

    Convex Signs New Member

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    Mar 3, 2012
    I am getting ready to buy 3 new printheads from China which are waterbased. I would like to know if you can convert waterbased heads to solvent based head using a manifold. The supplier in China has told me that you can't change it. Any advice please?? Macmedia.com is selling waterbased heads for $699, on their site they state that if you purchase these heads you would have to change it to solvent based using new a manifold or use the old one off of your old printheads.
     
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  2. artbot

    artbot Very Active Member

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    the manifold is different, the head is absolutely the same. i once got a waterbased epson 10000 head unit that had three perfectly stacked head rank stickers on each dx4.

    first one was for the epson 10000
    second was for roland
    third was for mimaki
     
  3. Convex Signs

    Convex Signs New Member

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    ok so you mean to say we can use waterbased head for solvent printer? My printer is Mimaki JV3-130 SPII.
     
  4. Convex Signs

    Convex Signs New Member

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    Mar 3, 2012
    what is ranking id?? The seller says that we cannot use the head with ranking id in my printer
     
  5. Jack Knight1979

    Jack Knight1979 Very Active Member

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    You have to change the manifold and gasket. The heads are the same. They may take the ranking off the sticker, but it will still work. It's ideal to have the ranking, but it will run w/out it.

    I'm about to buy a set myself.

    When I change out the head I just use the manifold and gasket from the solvent head that I'm replacing. Run some flush through the manifold to clear it and good to go.
     
  6. artbot

    artbot Very Active Member

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    yes. change the head manifold to a solvent manifold and you will have a "solvent dx4". the ranking ID is a code that fine tunes the voltage going the head. there's been a lot of discussion about if the head rank helps at all or allows the head to last longer. the evidence leans to the conclusion that the head rank does very little if anything to increase printer performance. first off you waterbased head may have a stack of stickers with head ranks for mimaki. if not, just leave the current head rank in it's place. occasionally a mimaki will "protest" and beep if the head rank doesn't match. i've seen this twice. i believe i just put a different head's rank in it's place and the printer accepted the head.

    what is the cost of the three new water based dx4s from china?
     
  7. Convex Signs

    Convex Signs New Member

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    The cost is $640/pc for solvent based and waterbased is $550. so it is $90 difference. I am still confused about the rank id. should I buy the head without the rank id or with rank id. How do you match the rank id?
     
  8. artbot

    artbot Very Active Member

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    the head rank isn't that important. i'd go without the head rank and save the money. what is odd about it "not having" a mimaki head rank is that all heads coming out of the epson factories have ranks. they make a head, give it a universal rank. there then is some kind of decoder that translates that universal rank so that it works with all the other OEMs firmware. the only reason this whole thing is so confusing is epson tries to legitimize the extreme mark ups, also using words like "authentic mimaki". the only thing authentic about the head is the sticker.
     
  9. ChicagoGraphics

    ChicagoGraphics Major Contributor

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    Just got an email from one of the suppliers I deal with in China, they are offering me DX4 original heads from Japan for 690.00. If you like I can pass there info along to you.
     
  10. Convex Signs

    Convex Signs New Member

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    one supplier i talked to is offering me $640 for solvent heads.
     
  11. artbot

    artbot Very Active Member

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    there truly is no such thing as a "solvent head". we should call them dx4's with solvent manifolds.
     
  12. jhanson

    jhanson Member

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    The heads the Chinese are selling as solvent heads are actually Roland-packaged DX4s with the factory solvent manifolds. The water based DX4s are ripped out of Epson 10000 spare head carriages, which go for a bit less. (It used to be about $750 per carriage here in the US, or about $225 per head, before Epson shut the barn doors...)

    For what it's worth about the head ranks, I've done some experimentation using different head rank values in a solvent Toucan LT. It seems that the first few digits of the head rank (6E7, 8A1, etc) indicate the voltage level it runs at: the higher the first three digits, the more output that head seems to have.

    In the JV3 printers, the head rank can have a pretty pronounced effect if you try running, for instance, water based inks. I tried to convert a JV3 to SEPIAX inks and immediately found that all the heads were firing two small double drops where they should have been firing one normal drop, because of the change in viscosity of the ink. Using a head rank with a higher voltage setting caused the heads to fire normally again.

    I was also recently able to bring four different Toucan LTs back into line just by changing the head ranks on the C,M, LC & LM heads. (The goal was to have all printers printing almost the same grays, without having to run a new linearization curve for each printer).

    If you only have one machine, however, the difference is generally so subtle it's difficult to notice and you'll have better luck just re-linearizing your printer.
     
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