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vicious cycle (Mutoh Faclon Outdoor 48) ink priming and nozzle loss

Discussion in 'Mutoh' started by printmares, Jun 9, 2012.

  1. printmares

    printmares New Member

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    Mar 23, 2012
    vicious cycle (Mutoh Falcon Outdoor 48) ink priming and nozzle loss

    Does anyone have a solution for the following Mutoh issue(s)? Any help would be much appreciated! I've been working these issues for the past 2 months, reading and working through many of the basic steps found here at sings101.

    Problem: Repeatedly losing and re-obtaining nozzles. After priming the system from the new dampers and also the maintenance station waste tubes most of the nozzles return. The heads were adjusted while attempting to align them. Most of the nozzles, then, vanished. Priming left head through waste tubes worked. Right side remains stuck (ie no ink flow, syringe plunger will not pull any ink through the maintenance station.) Cleaning cycles provide no improvement.

    Given:
    -New Eco-Ultra CMYKLcLm solvent ink (type that causes sponges to exapand)
    -replaced waste tubes
    -disassembled peristaltic pump. Tubes appeared functional. Black ink spot was found on tube inside of pump, next to cam which will cause a different catastrophe in near future.
    -cleaned matenance station caps and tubing.

    Possible Suspects:
    -pump cam position maybe stopping ink flow to waste station.
    -ink flow may be stopped at a port in the maintenance station cap.
    -original ink flow restrictions caused at ink cartridge pins (no error messages, though)
    -pushing maintenance station to far right detent position to allow ink flow from heads into caps does not release the right head. (mechanisms for this are unknown!!)
    -Mutoh Gremlins who live and operate in the motherboard containment area. Head Rank Gremlin may also exist.
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2012
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  2. printmares

    printmares New Member

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    Mar 23, 2012
    After speaking with the Mutoh service dept (AZ), who was very helpful/knowledgeable, I found a few more clues...

    1) While executing a 'charge' command, push the heads over maintenance station to the far right detent (as if manually priming from the waste tube end) and listen for a change of pitch from the pumps which would indicate a bad seal. (I do not remember seeing a 'charge' command in the menu, but there should be similar to push ink to the heads in a test mode without moving them.) My issue 'no flow', but this may help someone who is losing nozzles.

    2) Since the problem started after trying to align the heads, the heads may be seated in the cursor assembly incorrectly. They seemed to be seated correctly, but there may be other issues there.

    Does anyone have any other ideas or insight into this? Thanks
     
  3. FatCat

    FatCat Very Active Member

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    This statement leads me to wonder if you have checked for a clog on that side's plumbing or pump? If you can't pull ink from the head through the drain lines it usually means you have blockage somewhere. Without vacuum, you will lose suction which will result in missing nozzles and get progressively worse.
     
  4. J Hill Designs

    J Hill Designs Major Contributor

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    yeah, what I term 'solvosclerosis'
     
  5. printmares

    printmares New Member

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    Mar 23, 2012
    'Solvosclerosis' seems to return 2 or 3 days. I took the pump and maintenance station apart and cleared the tubes with solvent. The tubes were clogged. A tube could be collapsed.

    After clearing the tubes, my step was to align the heads. The mounting screws on the heads were loosened and rotated with and w/out the front levers, then, tightened down again. That's when nozzels were lost, again.

    The left head can be cleared through the waste tubes, but not the right head which would reamins stationary. I'm thinking that the right head is not in the tray(cursor) properly or the base of the head gets flexed/twisted. Thanks
     
  6. ruckusman

    ruckusman Member

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    Feb 24, 2011
    I had a similar issue with an EPSON 7000 - same heads, same capping station, and very likely same pumps.

    I had a leaky yellow damper (that was only part of it), the tubing was only partially blocked, but it was cracked inside the pump itself...plus the two small L shaped rubber fingers that actuate the pump cams, one was broken and the other cracked.

    So I flipped the pump tubing so that the lend that went to the waste tank was inside the pump.

    Went to the local rubber suppliers and bought some U-channel rubber of te correct thickness and cut all new L-fingers with a craft knife. Now I have enough rubber to cut new fingers for the next century.

    hope this helps

    peace out
     
  7. printmares

    printmares New Member

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    Mar 23, 2012
    It sounds like you saved alot of money by avoiding a new pump, maintenance station, and tubes.

    I heard the same issue about the wiper arm which gets jammed up with ink within a plastic channel. The wiper may not go back and forth and the finger that drives it sometimes breaks off.

    It seems like primming the tubes through the maintenance station might cause excess forces on the tubes and whatever else. The alternative is a strong cleaning which wastes ink.

    When I cleaned everything I did not see any broken parts.

    TUBES: while researching which tubes could be used on that pump, thnical support at Labware and Specialty Plastics Thermo Fisher Scientific
    was very informative and helpful. "In general I’d recommend something fluorinated (PFA, FEP or similar) for resistance to most solvents- although I was able to find that ordinary polypropylene or polyethylene is acceptable for use with at least a few of the ethylene glycol-ether varieties on the ink MSDS.
    The limiting factor, I expect, would be something flexible enough to work with the peristaltic pump. Best of luck- drop me a line if you need anything else!"
    [tygon and teflon may be too rigid to use]

    They did not have the part, but referred me to Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics. However, Saint-Gobain was difficult to communicate with and I could not find the product.
     
  8. ruckusman

    ruckusman Member

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    Check that those rubber fingers aren't broken/missing on the side which you're unable to pull ink on. Reason is that they engage the pump mechanisms when it rotates one direction and disengage them when it rotates the opposite, so they may be holding the tubing closed permanently.

    You may not find any broken parts, the small fingers which had broken off were below the pumps on my machine, it was only chance that I noticed the small pieces, otherwise I may have overlooked them when cleaning the pump.

    peace out
     
  9. printmares

    printmares New Member

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    Mar 23, 2012
    Understood. It makes the most sense. As 1 cam rotates in/engages the other rotates out/disengages. I'll double check it within the next week or so.

    Thanks for the suggestion.
     
  10. printmares

    printmares New Member

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    Mar 23, 2012
    The fingers were not broken. I attached some photos which show some of the components.

    From the attached views, I have a few questions and made a few assumptions.

    1) Both left and right pump side cam sets need to be somewhat in sync. It looked like one set was engaging when the other was disengaging.

    2) Once assembled the hose can be snugged up against the cams by pulling each side of the hose or does it matter if there is a gap? The roller cam has to push the fluid through, so, if the hose rests on the outside perimeter does it still engage well enough?

    3) The dark blue spots on both sides of the hose seem to indicate that ink might be starting to bleed through the hose unless it is created from the outside. They exist in a location where the ink pressure increases during the cycle.

    4) Other- The nub on the wiper track and the white, flat plastic part controls the back and forth motion of the wiper. I found this area to be full of ink which could jam things up.


    Thanks
     

    Attached Files:

  11. ruckusman

    ruckusman Member

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    Feb 24, 2011
    looks blocked &/or cracked, are you able to flip the ends to use the section below the pump?
     
  12. printmares

    printmares New Member

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    Mar 23, 2012
    It does not appear to be losing fluid through cracks or anything. I'll have to find a replacement tube anyways. Does the gap of the tubing about the cams have little impact?

    I'm in the stage of isolating and pressurizing each tubing section. It might be a problem at the capping station or at the heads.

    Thanks for the suggestions.
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2012
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