How to print long sheets with Epson 3880 PrintTool & QTR


#1

I’d like to make prints longer than the 22 inches afforded by a 17x22 sheet of paper. Given that the 3880 does not support rolls of paper, what is the best approach please ? Will the paper curl present an issue with a thick paper like Canson Platine ?

Does PrintTool or QTR (or the printer itself) have a built-in length limitation ?

For example if I wanted to make a 16x24 inch print, would I simply cut a piece from a roll to 17x25 and feed it through the top ? The rear ?

Thanks in advance :slight_smile:


#2

You can define custom paper sizes for anything you want up to 17 inches wide. There may be a length limit but I haven’t found it. I have long used 24x36 master sheets and cut it to my needs.

Since you speak of paper curl I take it you are cutting from a roll. The largest I’ve done from a roll is 13x39. I know you can define longer length than that but I can’t say whether or not it will work.

Use the rear feed. Roll the paper gently forward and just let it unspool as it prints. Or if you have enough space behind the printer just let it rest there.

By “feed it through the top” I take it you mean the sheet-feed. I’d use the manual rear-feed for anything this large and/or thick.


#3

I routinely print on 17 x25 on a 3880. I cut from a roll, use a mounting press to flatten paper and run via the rear feed. You must define the custom paper size.


#4

Hi Kenneth

I, for one, have been using roll paper for my 3880. I had a roll (peel and stick fabric) of 24 inch that I cut 17 inches wide. I also have rolls of 17 inch paper that I have cut to 24. In all cases I have taken the cut sheets and put them in a folder/ draw/ etc to allow them to become flat. I have also tried reverse rolling the paper to limit the curl. I prefer to have the time to let them rest in a draw. I then printed, through the appropriate channel (rear) proper gap etc. ,with no problem. As to the length beyond 24 inches I cannot answer but believe you might be limited by the program (Photoshop (39 inches?)etc). I am sure others can add length information.

Hope this is of help.

Martin


#5

I print 13 X 36" Epson Luster book covers routinely. The curl can present issues and possible damage the head. To prevent this, I cut the roll paper to 36" length and then reverse roll the sheets with the printable side in and set them aside for a day or so. This flattens them pretty well, although they might need some additional uncurling at the ends of the sheet. I have the printer on a table about a foot from a wall and can place the sheets in the top feeder, guides extended, and set the paper against the wall. Using “Print Preview” gives me enough time to support the sheet before it is fed into the printer.


#6

As stated in the other replies the custom paper size will allow longer sheets to be used.

As for fixing the curl in roll paper there are several alternatives discussed here:
https://www.redrivercatalog.com/infocenter/tips/how-to-reduce-curl-in-inkjet-photo-paper-rolls.html

I have tried several options and the best and the fastest was Option 3 - Use the De-Roller
The De-Roller is a device specifically made to remove curl from inkjet prints. It comes in 24" and 50" widths.

While this is a bit expensive it really works well, faster and better than other methods.
Flattening with a weight takes way too long and requires a lot of space for large prints.
Reverse rolling will cause creases in the paper as you roll, caused by the edge of the sheet.
I purchased the larger size De-Roller and use it often. Basically I roll up the sheet, wait a few seconds and unroll it, resulting in a flat sheet of paper ready for printing.


#7

Forgot to mention that I use that brown, double sided shiny sheet that comes packed with Epson papers. I place 4-6 sheets out flat, place the shiny sheet on top and then reverse roll. Never had issues with creases or bends. Just be careful. I only do about 50-60 covers a year so Option 3 expense isn’t warranted. If I did 200+ I would spring for it in a minute.


#8

The Epson driver limits the maximum print length to approximately 38.5 inches. I seem to recall the Print Utility allows longer prints using QTR but you should probably check with Roy about that.

I have made long prints using the rear feeder using pre-cut sheets from Red River and long sheets cut from rolls. The sheets cut from rolls need to be flattened. I inter-leaf the cut sheets with parent size sheets of fine art paper that is weighted from the top in one of my flat file drawers which about 4 feet wide. It typically takes at least a month for the sheets to become reasonably flat.

Cutting sheets from rolls takes a lot of work and care to keep from damaging the paper. So I usually do about 10 sheet batches.

Good luck,

Don Bryant


#9

The Epson driver for the 3880 has a length limit of around 950mm, I don’t recall the exact number but it’s fairly close to that. The limit is enforced in the driver. A RIP like QTR bypasses the driver and so doesn’t hit that limit. If you want to print colour longer than the limit, colour RIPs will generally enable this. I’ve used Printfab, but others will do it too. There is usually some kind of length limit in the RIP, but it’s probably longer than most rolls. As others have said, custom page sizes are your friend.

Regarding curl, if you’ve ever used a printer with a roll paper option (which the 3880 didn’t have), you’ll know that there’s always a leading margin of a couple of inches. I found out the hard way when printing on a long sheet cut from a roll on the 3880 why this is. The printer does this so that the leading edge of the paper is under the exit rollers before printing starts, preventing head strikes from paper curl. The same logic applies at the trailing edge, but is less obvious on a printer with a roll option, as inherently there’s a very long trailing edge. If you can’t flatten the paper, which can be difficult, I recommend cutting an extra few inches so that you have both a leading and trailing margin of 2".


#10

Thanks so much for your helpful information !!!

Taping together three sheets of letter stock to make an 8.5 x 33 inch sheet, I printed an 8x24 test print with no problem. I just fed it through the top loader.


#11

Just for the sake of clarity for anyone else reading this thread, the Epson 3880 does not have a “top loader”. It does have 2 feed paths that are accesses from the top of the printer. One is the Sheet Feed, which seems to be the one you are talking about, but I’m not certain. The other, right behind the sheet-feeder, is the Manual Rear Feed. That are what they are called in QTR and slight variations thereof in the Epson driver. Nowhere is either called top loader. It’s still not clear which one you are using. I’m sure this seems trivial, but I have reason to believe it’s not, especially for the inexperienced. :wink:


#12

Thank you for the clarification: yes, I’m referring to the Sheet Feed.


A top-loader is a clothes-washing machine which loads from the top, as opposed to front-loaders, which load from the front :wink:


#13

Hi Martin,
I have always sent my digital printing on silk projects “out” but was thinking of buying my own roll of fabric. Are you using the Piezography inks or just the Cone Color? My only wide 17" printer (3800) is loaded with Piezography Ink and that’s where I’ll be printing.

If so, what .quad do you use when printing using the Piezography system and Quadtone/QuadRIP?

Thanks!


#14

H Jeannie
Hope my reply is of some help. I am using the Cone Colour set of inks. However my previous post was about using a “fabric” paper and cutting from a roll. In my case the fabric was a peel and stick type and my concern was about the fact that any roll paper is going to have a set to it as it unrolls. I also use other papers that come in a roll.Thus it could be a physical problem as far as curl is concerned. I cut and either reverse rolled ( (with a suitable re-rolling system so as not to crinkle the paper) or just left to lay flat over time. You can certainly save some money in doing it yourself ( and from roll stock) and of course have more creative control. If you do not like the result you can re-do at lesser cost. The whole thing is a balancing act….Sorry I can not answer as to any specific “rip” etc. I expect it will be a matter of making a number of smaller sheet tests.

Best of luck.

Martin


#15

Hi Martin, Just wanted to say thanks for your reply. I’m experimenting, both on my 3800 with Piezo Inks and on an R3000 w. Cone Color. Since one of the fabrics I decided to use is a gauze, I guess I shouldn’t be worrying too much about print perfection!

Jeannie