R3000 PK ink dripping on prints

r3000

#1

HI Dana,

O.K. I have another issue this time with my R3000. I have what seems to be head strikes when using anything other than regular plain paper. I did set the platen gap manually to the largest opening it did not make a difference. I also have what appears to be PK ink dripping onto any prints made on thicker photo papers glossy or matt. I Called Epson they basically told me to take a hike your printer is out of warranty sorry buy a new one. They also supplied no insight as to the cause of the problem. I did do the cleaning routine in the video you posted on how to clean the capping station and print head. It helped for about a half dozen prints however, as soon as I printed on premium photo glossy paper I had several large streaks/pools of what appears to be black ink along with what sounds like head strikes on each pass of the print head. Do you have any suggestions or resources as to the problem with the printer. I did find a reference to Epson suggesting it is a supply line issue? Your thoughts?

Regards,
John


#2

Hi John~

Does black ink drip when the printer is in MK mode too, or just PK mode?
About how long ago did this start happening?
What is the current ink level of your PK cartridge?
How many times have you refilled the cartridges, or are they still on the initial fill of ink?
Are you using the full set of refill carts, or a mix of refill and Epson carts?
If you are getting frequent head strikes on paper during printing, then I suspect that may be related and/or causing the ink drips you are experiencing.
To avoid head strikes, you will want to make sure the paper is as flat as possible, corners and edges of your paper aren’t raised up to avoid the head catching on the paper. With the platen gap raised, I’m surprised that you’re getting head strikes on everything expect plain paper. If this was my printer, I would carefully clean the capping station, wiper blade and bottom of the print head again, and take care to flatten paper prior to printing. Have you tried the front paper path, or are you only using the auto paper path?

Let me know and I will try to help.
Best regards~ Dana :slight_smile:


#3

Hi Dana,

It started some time over the summer. If it means anything I lost the PK channel and had to do multiple cleanings to get it back. This has happened 2 or 3 times. Could it be a leak in a supply line sucking air or a clogged line causing the problem. Can I clean the supply lines on the R3000 printer as shown in the capping station print head cleaning video? The PK ink is 2/3rds full. I am still using the Epson cartrides with this printer at the moment however, I will be switching over to the Cone carts if I can solve this issue with the printer. I will try cleaning it again. There was quite a bit of ink and grime the first time I cleaned it. I only had distilled water however, it seemed to cut right though the dried ink and grime. Would installing the ink overflow tank be helpful. I do use this printer to make proof books that consists of 20-75 pages in one printing session. I noticed it was having a problem also when I printed DVD’s using the tray provided. Do you know if there is a service manual available for this printer?

Thanks,

John


#4

It does sound to be a mechanical issue with the printer, and depending on your technical skill/comfort level, you may be able to fix it yourself by following the repair manual, which you can get from 2manuals.com, here: http://www.2manuals.com/product_info.php?cPath=2_39&products_id=1376

All the best~ Dana :slight_smile:


#5

I will give the manual a try. I used to do all the maintanace for a commecial in house color lab so I think I can handle one of these printers I hope. Do you sell a waste ink kit for the R3000? If so can you direct me to it.

Thanks,
John


#6

Excellent, I hope you’re able to figure it out and get your printer working well again- please keep me posted, I’m curious.

Yes, you can attach our external waste ink bottle onto a R3000 printer. The waste bottle kit can be found here: http://shopping.netsuite.com/s.nl/c.362672/it.A/id.4784/.f?sc=18&category=-118

Best regards~ Dana :slight_smile:


#7

Hi Dana,

Can I use the PiezoFlush Cleaning Kit on the R3000 to try and clear the PK channel. Will the syringe and adaptor fit the R3000 ink inlet without issues?

Thank You,

John


#8

I have been asked this many times, and although a few people have successfully got an incomplete channel to start printing again using our print head cleaning kit, there are risks to doing this, so we generally don’t recommend it.
Here is the link to another thread where we discussed this: http://www.inkjetmall.com/tech/showthread.php?441-Suddenly-R3000-Doesn-t-Print-From-One-of-the-Cartridges
and the important clips pertaining to your question:
“Please note- our PiezoFlush small format print head cleaning kit is designed for use directly on the print head. Desktop printer models such as the R2400, R2880, 1400/1430, R1900, R2000, etc… use cartridges that install directly onto the print head- so removing the carts gains access to the print head for easy cleaning. With pro model printers (that have ink lines and dampers between the cartridges and print head), the dampers should ideally be disconnected from the print head in order to flush the print head directly. There have been a few customers who successfully unclogged their R3000 printers by using our print head cleaning kit in the cartridge chamber, and pushing thru the line/damper/head- but I am concerned this could damage the dampers or blow out a connection somewhere if too much pressure is applied. Also, you wouldn’t want to inject PiezoFlush into the cartridge end of your ink line, because it will mix with ink and effect your print output when it reaches the print head. The only way I would suggest trying the print head cleaning kit on an R3000 thru the cartridge chamber would be to GENTLY inject about 1ml of ink (not PiezoFlush) and apply some [U]slight pressure[/U] to try unclogging the plug or pushing the trapped air out. By using the same ink that is in the line, you will avoid contaminating the ink line with flush fluid, and the pressure is often what does the trick.”

I hope this helps.
Best regards~ Dana :slight_smile:


#9

Hi Dana,

Now I am confused. I called the other day and was told to just use a PK refillable cartride with PiezoFlush to try cleaning the PK channel by doing the head cleaning function via the printer. So I ordered the PK cartridge and PiezoFlush flush and the syrenge with blunt tip needle and the external waste ink tank for the R3000. So are you suggesting that I may be better off trying the small formatt kit syrenge with some ink to clear the channel? I do have some ink left over from my 7890 available to try that instead. Your thoughts? I think it is air in the line however, who knows with these printers as they are a PITA. I have cleaned the capping station wiper blade and print head according to your you tube video instructions several times although I used distilled water rather than PiezoFlush. It seemed to clean the ink easily though.

John


#10

There are many ways to clean your printer, and some procedures are easier with some models (such as cleaning the print head with a desktop printer model), but Epson inkjet printers have the same primary parts, and all printers should be cleaned/maintained for the best quality output and longest life. There are many factors when deciding what part or how to clean your printer, the main factor being: what’s causing the problem. You don’t always know the cause, but can troubleshoot and rule out possibilities to help narrow down the cause (sometimes there are many things together).
If there’s a chance this channel isn’t printing because the cartridge ran dry and air got into the ink line, then I would recommend starting by doing a few power clean cycles or an initial fill cycle to try purging the air, or print pure ink from that channel using QTR’s Calibration Mode. As I have told others, we have received reports from a few customers who have had success using the print head cleaning kit in the cartridge chamber of their R3000 printers (against our recommendation), but this concerns me for many reasons (the risk of causing more damage is high). In those situations, I am not certain if the issue was dried ink in the print head channel that restricted ink flow of that channel, particles or air in the damper, air in the ink line, or what exactly was causing their issues. I am very happy this fixed their issues, but also feel like they’re lucky to have had success instead of suffering the damage that could have occurred. Either way- I have done some testing, and want to do more to learn better how this effects the printer before writing a procedure or recommending doing this to a pro model printer. I have told a few people about others’ procedures and success, but always caution that damage could occur and I haven’t tested this thoroughly myself.

I hope this helps clarify my response, but please let me know if I have confused you more, if you have further questions or there’s anything else I can help you with.
All the best~ Dana :slight_smile:


#11

Hi Dana,

Thanks for your reply. As noted in my post, I have done all the things suggested. I think it is air in the line, as this happened when I replaced an empty Epson PK ink Cartridge with an Epson PK Cartridge. I have done nozzle checks, multiple cleaning cycles, and watched as all my ink is wasted doing cleaning cycles. I cleaned the printer multiple times as per your YouTube video. I still have a completely blank PK patch when doing a nozzle check. So I have a $850.00 dollar paper weight on my desk at this moment. So what is my best route to trying to clear this PK channel? Will the PK cone cartride with PiezoFlush possibley work if it is air in the feed line to the PK print channel? If not, what do I have to lose by trying the cleaning kit as the printer is of no use to me in its current state. Will I be wasting my $ and time trying the PK cart and PiezoFlush route? The only thing I have not tried at this point is using the QTR. Can I use it with the MAC OSX operating system or is it PC based only? I just would like to get the printer working and need advice. That said, if it does not end up working, please understand I will not blame you. I find Epson has a huge issue with these printers and is not supporting printer owners with info and solutions other than “your printer is out of warranty!” Or they want you to send it to them for repairs that cost as much as replacing the printer with a new one. I called the Epson help line to try to find a solution with them. Talked to Epson Corp Headquarters - no help/solution. I am looking for the best possible solution - if it works great, if not at least I tried!

John


#12

Silly question, but one more thought- did you remove the air vent tab from the new cartridge before installing into your printer? If not, this would certainly cause the channel to suddenly and completely stop printing.
If you confirm the vent tab is removed for proper ink flow, then I would try printing with the black channel using QTR’s calibration Mode (which works on both Mac and Windows), and try gently injecting about 1ml of PK ink into the channel thru the cartridge end using our print head cleaning kit to try getting it printing/flowing well again.

Please do keep me posted, as experience is helpful for others to learn from and build on. With this community help system, I have noticed some users helping others, which is fantastic and helps provide a network to share information and knowledge, to help each other thru all the various strange situations printers can sometimes get us in.

Best regards~ Dana :slight_smile:


#13

Hi Dana,

Good thought on the air tab, however, I did remove it. (Epson OEM cart the little yellow tab) I just ordered the Cleaning kit so I will try your suggestion and inject a ml or 2 into the PK channel and cross my fingers! I really think it is air trapped in the line. I don’t have the QTR software as I am using the K3 inks in this printer. Question - can I use QTR software to do maintenance on both my R3000 and 7980, even though I am using the K3 ink set in both? Does it matter what inks you are using or can you purge ink lines in the maintenance mode no matter which ink set you are using?

Thanks,
John


#14

Hi John~

Ok, I just wanted to check all the possibilities. Another thought is the new cartridge somehow restricting ink flow, and you could test another cartridge to see if you have the same results. The fact that you were experiencing black ink dripping on the paper during printing may indicate something more than air causing your recent non-printing black problem. Does black print if you do a black ink change to Matte Black mode? If MK works fine, then you may be dealing with a bad PK cartridge, or something in the line or PK damper that is causing that channel to not print.

Keep me posted with your cleaning, as I’m curious about your situation and results.

Yes, QTR can be used with both the R3000 and 7890 (no matter what inks are used) to flush individual ink channels by following our instructions.
QTR is a shareware program that we use with Piezography K7 inks, but if you find it helpful to use for flushing (or trying to clean) individual ink lines in your printers, then I suggest using it and paying the $50 fee. You don’t need to be in maintenance mode to use QTR. Please read our instructions for printing thru QTR’s Calibration Mode here: http://www.inkjetmall.com/tech/content.php?144-Print-Ink-Separation-Image-thru-QTR-Calibration-Mode

All the best~ Dana :slight_smile:


#15

Hi Dana,

Just wanted to let you know that I was able to clear my PK channel with the small formatt cleaning kit and a couple of ml of PiezoFlush flush and was right back to printing with a couple of cleaning cycles. Easy as pie and a lot less stress than fighting with cleaning cycles and wasting lots of ink! So my take is if your fighting a clogged head and have tried everthing else I would recommend giving the small formatt cleaning kit a try. I know you don’t yet recommend this procedure for the R3000 however, I found it to work easily when nothing else had. It also seems to have not caused any damage at least in my case.

Regards,

John


#16

Thanks for the update John.

I am very pleased to hear you’re back to happily printing, though have not yet completed my testing with this procedure to determine how safe/effective it is. A few customers have successfully fixed their printers doing what you did, but I have concerns about possible damage to the printer, and mixing of fluid in the ink line. After I wrap up a few projects that I’m currently working on, I will continue testing this and other procedures with our R3000 to have better recommendations, and actual cleaning procedures for this model.

Best regards and happy printing~ Dana :slight_smile: