Epson 3880 died. New one and using old Cone inks for charging it?

My old 3880 died after two years of usage. Something wrong with the print-head slicing through the papers, and yes even on thin typing paper. Some platen motor, or one in the head busted so it crashed the head and wrecked it too. Very odd patterns of the head wiping off the fresh ink over the rollers too.

So time for a new one as they are beyond economical repair.


Instead of using the new printer carts for the initial charge, can I just use the ones out of the old 3880 to charge the new one up, or does Epson somehow need to know the new chips and carts for the first charge and run? I’d rather just keep using the profiles I’ve made rather than go through all that profiling again, although the new head may spit out some different coloration - maybe?


Hi Mack~

I’m sorry to hear about the passing of your 3880 :frowning:

We recommend testing a printer with Epson inks to make sure it works well/correctly before installing any third party inks/carts. This way, if there are any problems with the printer, you determine this in the beginning and can get a replacement printer, or if the printer is confirmed to work well with Epson inks, but you have problems after installing third party inks/carts, the printer is one less factor when troubleshooting.
If you have already used these carts/inks with your previous 3880, and have been having good results, then it’s certainly up to you if you’d prefer setting up your new printer with the refill carts.

Best regards~ Dana

Thanks Dana.

I’d like to avoid the Epson ink vs. yours in setting up a new one if at all possible. If it doesn’t work worth yours initially, I could always shove in the Epson carts to return it. Also, the matter of getting the old ink out and new in and the lengthy profiling and more ink waste too. I had to waste the first K7 batch of ink to get rid of the yellow Epson ink contamination and don’t want to go there again if I can avoid it. Those dampener pads seems to hold a lot of ink that gets loose later.

I was more curious “If your refill carts would work for the initial setup?” or does Epson somehow require their carts for the first prime and reading of them for some secret setup information?

Seems the 3880 print head repair costs more than a new printer with ink and rebate too. Go figger! Might be some screw that fell out of the bottom of the print head causing it to drag around and tear it up, but don’t know as I cannot see under it. It was about 18-20 months old, so they timed it well enough to get it out of warranty.


Hi Mack~

I understand wanting to avoid wasting your Piezography ink to get rid of the annoying color staining. I haven’t charged a brand new 3800/3880 with our refill carts, but have done this with a 7880 and it worked, so think it may work on a 3880 as well (you’ll quickly find out after installing the carts).

It’s just ridiculous that print heads now cost more than a new printer… what a waste of a perfectly fixable machine! We threw away a 7900 recently after the head failed, and it seemed so wrong to discard such a big machine, with all good working parts except one, but it just wasn’t economical to spend more on one part than it cost to get a whole new printer.

Please let me know how it works!
Best~ Dana :slight_smile:


Bad luck with your 7900 too?

Is there any chance Jon will come up with some inks and carts for Canon? I like the idea that their heads are user replaceable (I’ve done it with one of their old 9000 II units that is still running with OCP ink.). I fired up the old Canon again and it is still running, just their 6 color gamut isn’t was wide as with the 9 color Epson. I’ll hold off buying another Epson for a while.

Epson and their “Just throw it away and buy another as parts cost too much” attitude is absurd. Twenty months is pretty poor lifetime for me, and only 1,300 prints. Costs about $1 per print just for the printer excluding ink and paper. Epson reliability seems to be waning, and the sheer number of reviewers on Amazon returning them up to 3-4 times (for another refurb.) when new is bad too.

I was just reading the Square Trade $179 Extended 3-year warranty on B&H for the Epson 7900. It covers “Drops and spills” - ??? - like that happens with a 222 pound 7900. Ha! Ha! (Push it down some stairs comes to mind.). Other warranty descriptions exclude “Normal wear and tear,” and excludes “Business use” (only residence) too. Pretty much can get out of it if they want to.

The only thing that seems good for 24" is the Canon ipf6400/6450 series - maybe. Least there are two Canon printer service places in my town, and zero Epson service because “They are not serviceable.”


Yes it’s pretty awesome how easy it is to replace Canon heads. Epson and Canon have a lot of differences in printer, cartridge and ink technology, so it would be a big shift for us to start selling cartridge and ink solutions for Canon. Although we currently have no plan to develop products for Canon, I wouldn’t say we’d never consider it, but for now we’re still focusing on Epson. Keep an eye on our website and newsletters for info and product announcements, in case things change, that’s where you’d see the news first!

Best~ Dana