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Puzzled by recent plasticizer migration

Discussion in 'Hewlett Packard' started by dypinc, Feb 20, 2020.

  1. dypinc

    dypinc Very Active Member

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    I am not sure what is going on as of late but this problem seems to be getting worse. Every time I see it I do the alcohol wipe test and then it prints great. So I question how can it be the printer but I am sure puzzled why this is happening so frequently lately. This is in a climate controlled shop because we do a lot of digital press so temp never fluctuates more than about 8 degrees and humidity stays between 30 and 40 percent, and has been the same for at least the last six years.

    Never see it on Forward Banner of Briteline Vinyls. Had to quit using most of General Formulation vinyls because of this. Just now toward the end of a roll of HP Grip it is showing and that roll hasn't even been here 6 months. Did alcohol wipe test and it printed fine.

    Anyone have a thoughts on the whole issue or resources you can point me to.
     
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  2. iPrintStuff

    iPrintStuff Prints stuff

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    Try taking a look at the spec sheet for shelf life? If it’s a 1 year shelf life, and it’s been in the warehouse 6 months before it got to you, that could be it. Would also explain why it’s at the end of the roll?
     
  3. dypinc

    dypinc Very Active Member

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    Shelf life 2 years. With General Formulation vinyls two new rolls in a row were bad and from different batches. Seems strange that in the last two years I have seen this way more then in the whole 10 years before.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  4. Joe House

    Joe House Active Member

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    If it's a size that's not commonly used, it could be that it's sat at the distributor's warehouse for a few months, preceeded by sitting in the manufacturer's warehouse for a few months all before it gets to your place and sits for a few months. It all adds up. And if any of those locations are not well controlled (think warehouse space here) the problem is accelerated - especially during summer months in warm climates.
    I had a customer who had a 60" roll of banner material (bought from a different vendor) along with a roll of 54" of the exact same material. 54" printed ok, the 60" printed like @#$. We figured out the date code inside the core and found that the 60" was over 2 years old and he had just received it within the last week.
    Oh the joys of distribution. (At least I got to tell him to send it back to the competition and get a roll from us);)
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  5. unclebun

    unclebun Very Active Member

    Or it's because of reformulation to remove phthalates because of CPSC regulations.
     
  6. dypinc

    dypinc Very Active Member

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    Interesting I had not heard about that. Something definitely seems to have changed in the last two years. Does this problem only affect Latex inks?
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2020
  7. Joe House

    Joe House Active Member

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    Latex seems to show it up more prominently, but it also affects solvent prints. I've got no experience with it on a UV printer, but I suspect it may affect that ink as well.
     
  8. dypinc

    dypinc Very Active Member

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    I am not trying to promote any products, but what I don't understand is why does some media not have this problem. We rarely use 63" banner and I know the roll I just printed has been sitting here for at least 2 years (I bet longer) it printed fine with no plasticizer migration issues. I even have older media here that prints fine so there must be something in the manufacturing process that contributes to this.
     
  9. unclebun

    unclebun Very Active Member

    It all comes down to the specifics of which plastic polymers they are using and which plasticizers they are using. Vinyl is not one uniform thing. It's a category of plastics, and there are many variations within the category.
     
  10. dypinc

    dypinc Very Active Member

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    But you would think that with the amount of media going through Latex printers this would be a concern.
     
  11. Joe House

    Joe House Active Member

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    Yeah. HP addressed that concern in the 500 series with a roller designed to remove plasticizer from the surface of the media as it goes in to the printer.
     
  12. dypinc

    dypinc Very Active Member

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    Does the roller really help? Anyone with a 300 series and a 500, if you see it on a roll of media on the 300 and then move it to the 500 does it then print fine?
     
  13. Joe House

    Joe House Active Member

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    That I can't tell you. The machines ship with the standard roller installed - this is the roller that sits right above the vinyl roll. You have to swap it out for the foam roller (that absorbs the plasticizer.) I've not had any customers tell me that it works or doesn't. Sorry.
     
  14. dypinc

    dypinc Very Active Member

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    I am aware it the roller on the 500 series which does have me wondering if the manufacturers are cheapening the product because of this roller and that is why I have been seeing it a lot more. But then I asked before about this problem and other inks.
     
  15. flyplainsdrifta

    flyplainsdrifta Active Member

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    dude that is a good point. now with something designed to reduce print issues due to low quality plastics, why wouldnt you as a business, go cheaper to make more money. as s****y as that is, that would make sense. the roller does work to a degree though. i had to run samples for a customer on their own material and had the issue. after about 3 to 6 feet, the roller did help substantially. there were small patches here and there but it was about 80% better IMO.
     
  16. dypinc

    dypinc Very Active Member

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    Oh that's good to know! So random patches showing up in a short term vinyl POP. I guess I can't go cheaper on my end.
     
  17. jawdavis

    jawdavis Member

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    The wiper roller definitely works, and on a variety of medias. Scrim banners show a marked improvement if there was any sort of migration or contamination of concern. We use it a decent amount on some wallcovering materials that are vinyl and may have some contamination left over from the manufacturing process. The wiper roller is designed to be replaced as a consumable item every so often, but we're still using the original since it's in pretty decent shape after 3 years of sporadic usage.

    I would think that manufacturers aren't going to start making their medias even crappier just because one printer on the market has developed a temporary stopgap measure to the issue. If every printer had a way to combat plasticizer migration, then that might be a different story. I remember solvent printers being way more prone to these issues than the latex back in the day and as far as I know, they haven't addressed this problem yet the way HP has.
     
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