Problem changing to ConeColor cart on 7880



I’ve had an issue with changing from Epson OEM carts to your refillable carts on my 7880. This is partly FYI but also a request for help.

Four of eight carts have been changed over the past few months as the OEMs ran out, without incident. When I attempted to change the fifth (it was the Light Cyan), I got a ‘Cartridge Error’ message. I went through all of your support info, checked and eliminated variables as far as possible, but with no success.

The sequence was:

Filled and primed the new cart as usual.
Used the chip resetter to reset chip on the new cart. (I’ve since learned that you supply carts with chips already reset.)
Installed it in the printer; got ‘Cartidge Error’. NB: This was different from the ‘No Cartridge’ message I got later.
Removed new cart, and replaced the empty OEM cart. Got the ‘No Cartridge’ message.
Replaced the chip on the new cart with the one that was on the empty OEM cart.
Attempted to reset the old chip, but got no LED on the resetter.
Reset the resetter, and reset the old chip on the new cart.
Reinserted the new cart, but still got ‘No Cartridge’ message.
Reseated the cart with base to the left, but still got ‘No Cartridge’ message.
Went and bought a new OEM LC cart.
Installed it, and the printer accepted it OK.

This got me out of trouble, and allowed me to meet a printing deadline, but it doesn’t solve the longer term issue: when that new OEM cart runs out, I’m going to want to replace it with your refillable cart, and as far as I can tell, I’m going to have the same problem.

I initially thought that the problem might be with the sensor pins in the printer not making proper contact, either because of dirt or damage. But success with using a brand new OEM cart suggests that this is not the case. I’m now thinking that the sensor is not making proper contact because of the alignment of the chip when using your cart. It seems strange that this should happen on the fifth cart, but I’m guessing that the sensor position has a small tolerance of error for position, and that your carts also have a small tolerance of error, and that the two small positional errors have added up to one that’s large enough for a failure. Do you think this is possible?

I notice on close examination of your carts that the top and bottom faces (with the cart in its operating orientation) are not parallel; the vertical face with the label is slightly bigger than the opposite face. This makes your cart higher on one side than an OEM cart - and also means that it sits slightly out of vertical. I saw your advice about shifting the base of a cart to the left to maximise chip contact, and this corresponds to the slight leftwards lean that your carts must have as a result of their shape.

The help I’d like, please, is for you to supply me with a new empty LC cart, so I can see if the printer will accept it, and if not, experiment with shaving the edge/s to make it square in profile, and sit more truly in my printer.

I’d also like a set of new chips for insurance, and a second chip resetter as a backup; I’m not convinced that mine is not shorting out every time I try to use it. I’m happy to pay for these items.

Oh, and I believe that the set of O-rings for the air inlet valve was missing from the kit that I bought last year to begin the changeover process. I assume they should have been in the bag with the syringes, gloves, and funnels? I’d appreciate a set of those, too, also for insurance.

Thanks for your time, and I’ll look forward to your response.


Hi nickg~

I’m sorry to hear you’re experiencing issues with this refillable cart in your Epson 7880 printer, and can certainly get this resolved for you right away! Please know the 7800/9800 and 78880/9880 use the same shape/size/style refillable cartridge (just with different chips attached), and have been one of our most popular products for many years, with several hundred customers happily using them. In our production studio, Cone Editions Press, we have a heard of printers, our main workhorses being six 7880/9880s that we have set up with the five different Piezography ink tones, and one with Cone Color Pro. These machines have been solid since day one, needing only basic cleaning routines to date, and have each been using their same set of refill carts for years with excellent results. Yes, the carts are not perfectly square or flat- though we have tested a variety of refill carts available on the market, and feel confident that the model we have are the best available, and generally work very well with a very low failure rate. Out tip about pushing carts towards the left of the cartridge chamber is specific only to the 7700/9700, 7890/9890 and 7900/9900 cartridge models- not for the 7880/9880 that you’re using.

Based on your explanation, I believe you have a bad chip on your LC refill cart, which will be fixed by attaching a new chip to your cart in place of the existing chip.
Yes, you should have received the o-rings along with the syringes, funnels and gloves that came with your carts- we will send the o-rings you need along with the new LC chip.
I will direct your email to Wells to process your requested order for the set of replacement chips, and ask him to include an additional LC chip and o-rings free of charge. Chip replacement instructions can be found here:

Please let me know if you have questions or there’s anything further I can help you with.
Best regards and have a great day~ Dana :slight_smile:


Hi Dana

Thanks for your response, and your advice. I agree - the 7880 is a fantastically well-tempered workhorse. I’ve had mine for 5 years and I’m only now beginning to think I should get a service, and that’s more for preventative maintenance than to fix any actual problem. It gets a bit noisy sometimes, but that’s really the only negative comment I have.

Thanks also for passing my request to Wells for supply of the chips. I’ll replace the chip on my LC cart once I receive them and let you know how it goes.



Hi Nick~ You are very welcome, we’re always here for our customers!! :slight_smile:

Please let me know if there’s anything further I can help you with.
Best regards~ Dana :slight_smile:


Hi Dana

I wasn’t expecting to have to follow up on your offer so soon, but I just tried to refill the LK cart in my 7880 (second time; first fill was to a brand new unused cart, primed with a straightened paper clip) and when I pulled it out of the printer ink spurted out of the exit valve. I pulled the silicon plug out asap to relieve the pressure, which stopped the flow, but after the clean-up, when I refilled the cart from the 700ml bottle I recently purchased, ink leaked out once the level in the cart was high enough for gravity to work. I currently have the cart sitting end up with the exit valve at the top, with the silicon plug back in, and I noticed that the ink immediately drained back out of the exit channel into the cart.

So, obviously the exit valve has failed; I have two questions, please:

  1. Is it possible to replace the exit valve with one from an unused cart in the set that I haven’t yet used, or do I need a replacement cart?
  2. I haven’t heard from Wells re supply of the chips from my previous post; is it possible to include either a replacement exit valve or a replacement cart with that shipment, or has it already been despatched? I got an email from weborders@ on 7 June, confirming shipping of the set of chips, but the Ship To address was yours, in VT. Tracking # was 1ZR37V530369277946.

If I can replace the exit valve myself I’d really like to do so; I need to keep printing to fill customer orders. I’d appreciate instructions on how to do that, please, if it’s possible. Worst case scenario, I have to replace the malfunctioning cart in my printer as quickly as I can and deal with any spillage next time I refill the cart. At least I know to remove the silicon plug before pulling the cart out.



Dana, I just checked through your refill instructions and realise that I was supposed to pull the silicon plug before removing the cart from the printer. My bad. Still, this wasn’t just a little spray, it was a full-on spurt; I reckon I lost about 50ml of ink. Plus, the exit valve still leaks when the cart is out of the printer, as described above.

Thx NG


Hi Nick~

We now have a plastic priming tip, which is used on the end of a slip-tip syringe for a better and easier method for priming cartridges with ink. The video instructions have not yet been updated to include the new priming procedure, but the written instructions were updated with the new priming tool/procedure several months ago, when the priming tips were added to this product.
You can find priming tips here:
Please refer to the latest written instructions for the 7800/9800 and 7880/9880 refillable cartridges, which include info that explains how to prime cartridges using the new priming tip and syringe. Occasionally, some users have damaged the exit valve seal by priming carts with the straightened paperclip (they accidentally jam the paperclip tip thru the gray rubber seal, puncturing it), which can ruin the seal and cause ink to leak from the exit valve.
The latest instructions can always be found on the instruction tab of the product pages on the Inkjetmall site, or in the Product Manuals and Instructions section of this forum, here:

Based on your explanation, I believe the gray exit valve seal is damaged or the spring did not expand straight/fully to properly seal the exit hole. The quickest thing to check is if the spring just didn’t expand all the way- to do this, hold the cartridge as it is currently: exit valve UP. Wipe ink off the exit valve so you can see as well as possible, then insert the straightened paperclip STRAIGHT thru the hole in the center of the gray rubber seal to depress the spring inside. Remove the paperclip straight, so the spring expands straight in the exit valve, and ball at the end seals with the gray rubber seal at the end. Inspect it to check for any obvious problems such as damage to the gray rubber seal, no ball at the end of the spring (I’ve never heard of this happening, but would certainly cause ink to leak out if the ball was missing), or the spring not expanding correctly/fully. If all looks good, tilt the cartridge exit valve DOWN and tap the exit channel area a few times with your knuckle to fill the exit channel with ink. Watch closely to see if any ink leaks from the exit valve- if it leaks, don’t reinstall the cart into your printer, and use a different cartridge; if it doesn’t leak, try to reinstall the cart into your printer and do 1-2 regular cleaning cycles, then print a nozzle check and see how everything looks. Please contact me if you have any questions or are unsure of anything before proceeding.

The exit valve can not easily be taken apart, fixed and put back together with the cartridge model you’re using, so if your current exit valve isn’t sealing well, the best and quickest way to resume printing is to use a new cartridge, and from now on, only prime carts using the plastic priming tip and syringe method. If you have an empty/unused cart, you can use it in the LK position by transferring the chip from the LK cart to the new cart (in pace of the existing chip), using double sided tape to secure the chip to the cart. Make sure to write on the cart “LK”, so you know to refill it with LK ink in the future.
You can get a single refillable cartridge here (to replace the one you use with LK ink):

I see Wells had some of the items you need shipped here from our main shipping location (which is the email and tracking # you received), and I see a note saying we have to ship from here to your location in Hong Kong- is it correct that the chips and o-rings should be sent to the same address we sent your last order to?

Please let me know if you have questions, your results after opening/closing the exit valve and examining it, or if there’s anything else I can help you with.
Best regards~ Dana


Thanks, Dana.

It’s now 1.30am, and I can’t see straight enough to check the valve as you describe; I’ll do it tomorrow. Please ask Wells to hold despatch of those items to me (yes, to the same address in HK, please) until I advise success or otherwise. If necessary, I’ll ask Wells to include a replacement cart in that shipment.

I have priming tips here; they were supplied with the original set of carts. I should apologise - I guess I’m just another one of those customers who doesn’t read the instructions properly. From now on, of course, I’ll be using the priming tips.

Thanks again for your time, and for your clear explanation and instructions. I’ll let you know how it goes.



Ok, please keep me posted so I can help you get back to happily printing! :slight_smile:
Thanks and good night- Dana


OK, I just checked the exit valve per your instructions - except using a priming tip on a syringe rather than a paper clip - and, using an unused cart for visual comparison, the ball and spring are present and [I]appeared[/I] to be functioning correctly, although it’s difficult to see clearly with some residual ink in the exit channel. I depressed the spring 2-3 times and allowed the ball to reseat, primed the cart, and it immediately leaked again. I cleaned up, then went through the process a second time, just to be sure, as I couldn’t see any visible damage to the rubber seal; it looks just the same as that in the unused cart. And after a second round of depressing the ball and spring to reseat it - no leak! I left the primed cart in its operating position for 10 minutes to check, but still no leak, so I’ve loaded it back in the printer, and printed a perfect nozzle check pattern - the full version using the Auto setting.

So, it seems I’m OK again - thanks so much for your support. I’m going to flag that cart as suspect, though, and keep a close eye on it for leaks, especially when I go to refill it again. That might take a while; this is the first time I’ve refilled CC carts to capacity.

It also occurred to me that I can always use an OEM cart to keep printing if I have a problem like this; it’s what I did with the LC ink while I wait for those chips to arrive. Could you please let Wells know that I don’t need a replacement cart for now, and that he can post the chips to me?

Thanks again


Hi Nick~

Thanks for the update, I’m glad to hear the exit valve has stopped leaking after opening and closing it for a good seal. Please do keep an eye on the cart and LK ink flow, and let me know if you have questions or if there’s anything further I can help you with. It is normal to have some ink on the front/exit valve end of the cart after removing from the printer, but ink should not leak out of the exit valve (though if the valve isn’t sealed well, and the cart is under pressure- ink will leak out until pressure is released and valve sealed properly).

Your chips were already sent last week, so should arrive shortly. Yes, you can use an OEM cart along with ConeColor refill carts to continue printing if you experience another refill cart issue, so there is no down time while waiting for a solution.

Best regards and happy printing~ Dana :slight_smile: