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diydtg (r1900 build)

3309 Views 11 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  102557
ok guys,

thought i would post this over here on this side aswell, i finally completed a diydtg based on an epson r1900...

some all ready know that most dtg's are based on an epson head, but for those that do not, i'm sure with a little research you will discover this fact... My build theory is simply this..we already know epson makes great printers and dependable why add my firmware and change a great thing (i tried this first, and the better results are the epson in its pure form..) so i just simply added what epson does best to what i do best;)

anyway i could not afford to purchase a commercial machine, so i decided to build one...lots of research late nights several mistakes etc..i finally solved the puzzle...my machine is a manual load and i line the platen with a registration mark on the base...it can also be configured for white ink...

i purchased everything for the build at lowes home improvement store with the exception of the plastic base material which can be substituted...i am a contract mechanical designer by trade and manufacture an design various plastic components mainly on process production lines as my day job so thats what i used plastic.. there is also a thread in the diydtg on plastic welding that i posted...

the total cost for material was roughly 200 dollars..excluding the printer (epson refurb from epson online 379) ink carts and dtg ink purchased from dtginks.com..

this might be something some people with a little carpentry skill might be interested in building (more info in diydtg section of the forum- http://www.t-shirtforums.com/diy-dtg/t120740.html

its a huge savings and will produce commercial quality prints-(its the same printer that many commercial machines are based off)..

videos below,the first vid the two shirts are printed at 1400x2 using ek rip...the second vid is a detailed 11x11 graphic printed at 720x2 in 38 seconds from start of print to end. i calculate the start of print @ :59 second in the video and the end of print @ 1:37 point, the printer was not powered at start up so you can see me load the shirt power the printer up, then i print the graphic from the computer and it spools up.. so 59 seconds is loading the shirt, powering the printer, and it spooling up..can you imagine what speed you could produce multiple shirts at one after the other of the same design? KEEP IN MIND THIS IS A DIYDTG..;)

this is quite an achievement at this res with 100% epson firmware.. yes 100% epson firmware... your biggest prob will only cost you 379 ie printhead clogs etc..and you get a whole new printer.. so that includes the head to the mother board etc,etc..

since it does not include added firmware...mother boards ,fuses etc are not going to be a prob with this set-up...in other words it will be as reliable as you make the base and the epson printer itself.....and of course correct maintenance when using it as a dtg... (the brother in an epson version:D)


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That's some very impressive work! I am looking forward to seeing the plans you were talking about; projects like this can really help me learn more about the native Epson printers, themselves, and how to properly implement them into a DTG application.

Thanks again!! Videos look great. :)
thanks justin,

I'm working on effective way to distribute the plans from my site (to be posted when there ready). I have some things i need to resolve regarding language barriers etc. allowing them to be useful to different countries etc..

the threads got cross referenced in the diydtg area of the forum due to the many aspects of doing conversions on this.. but i will be using the MISSION ACCOMPLISHED "license to thrill" thread as the primary and also when i post updates on the plans...

my reg mail and pm just got bombed over this.. didnt expect that much interest..

thanks again for the support..

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anyone have any input on the 720 res printing..do you guys that run the commercial machines print in 1400x2 or the 720 at a higher frequency?

i have vid above printing in 720 to me it seems to be alot faster, and works good with the detailed graphic..just not sure when i switch it over to white ink if the cmyk at 720 will cover enough..i use the ek rip for the 1900 so i can pretty much dump as much ink as i want..but i would love to know the preferred method or resolution from experienced printers..

thanks in advance
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Sometimes 2 passes at lower res will be better than one pass at the higher res and the time to print will be approx the same, better color and on textiles the detail maybe the same. Example Fast Artists videos suggest trying 2x360 for better results than 1x720. The manual reset using fine alignment marks works better than auto in most cases. Assuming you have your glasses on. Great Job!!!!
thanks Randy,

the lowest res i can go is 720.. the rip is set up as 720x720speed or 1400x720fine or 1400x1400super fine

i will give it a shot... i get awesome detail in the 720 res i cant tell the difference between that and the 1400 but thats printing at dual cmyk and both directions with the print head forgot the word for it..lol

hope i can get the same amount of ink down at a single cmyk with the four being switched to white channels..:)
hope i can get the same amount of ink down at a single cmyk with the four being switched to white channels..:)
Not at 720 you won't. That's why a lot of people will print at 1440x720 for their color layer. It slows the print down, but it does give a good vibrancy.
Not at 720 you won't. That's why a lot of people will print at 1440x720 for their color layer. It slows the print down, but it does give a good vibrancy.
thanks appreciate the help!!:)
im thinking about just using separate ink carts when doing white or lights. I like the speed and detail with the dual cmyk at 720, i did print from just the four channels with color and its not as vibrant as you said. when i raise ink level density etc the detail is not there... or maybe I will try a double pass 720 gota play with it awhile to find out what will work best.. thanks..

p.s..I agree with your choice to rep the MOD 1;) Its an engineering marvel:D

Hey justin, what res are you printing in when doing darks?:p
When you start to print using the white ink you will see that a lower resolution CMYK layer over the white will work and be more vibrant, also when you are set up for CMYK/WWWW using two passes of CMYK (No White ink) will give you a good vibrant look and this is where good alignment on those second passes is needed. ;)
when you start to print using the white ink you will see that a lower resolution cmyk layer over the white will work and be more vibrant, also when you are set up for cmyk/wwww using two passes of cmyk (no white ink) will give you a good vibrant look and this is where good alignment on those second passes is needed. ;)
"happy printing"
thanks dan!
Hey Jeff!

My guys run almost all dark jobs at 1440 x 1440 (white layer) and 720 x 720 (cmyk layer) - for my printer, it doesn't make sense to print the CMYK over white ink at higher than 720 x 720, because it over saturates the ink and causes bleeding issues. More importantly, it ruins the color accuracy between the screen and the shirt. However, on SPOT COLOR jobs (a few solid, bright colors that really need to pop), printing the color layers at 1440 x 720 (over the white) can really add something - we offer this as a "color boost" option, for our customers. In the beginning, we used to assume that everyone wanted "bright" prints - since many people are more concerned with accurate prints, we now allow the client to determine if their individual artwork would benefit from "over saturating" the color, for a small additional cost.

For light garments, we go back and forth between 1440 x 720, and 720 x 720. Again, the higher res lays down more ink, and makes for a deeper print, but it sacrifices more color accuracy than I am willing to give up, when printing photographic images; it also tends to bleed too much ink into the image, causing deterioration in the finer details. Therefore, we print many jobs at the higher resolution, but we print most photographic jobs at 720 x 720.

A few things to consider, when comparing your results to mine:

- We are printing in single-CMYK mode, not dual CMYK, since we also have white ink in our printer; this means less ink is being laid down in a single pass, compared to a dual-CMYK setup (no white ink). In my opinion, the amount of ink we are laying down is MORE than enough! In fact, as a matter of argument, let's assume that I had 8 channels to print the white ink, and 8 channels to print the CMYK ink - at that point, based on my current results, I could probably then print the white ink layer at 720 x 1440 (or 720 x 720) and the CMYK layer at 720 x 720 for "color boost", or 360 x 360 for accurate color.....

- When printing white ink, the 1440 x 1440 mode lays down more ink than we need, sometimes. This occurs when the white ink is nicely mixed in the lines (ie, we haven't stopped printing for awhile), the humidity and temp are in the right range, and everything is firing away nicely. However, since this is not ALWAYS the case (although, in reality, we have very few actual problems with our ink flow), I have not taken the time and effort to dial down the percentage of white ink, at that resolution. Certainly, I could save money if I did this, and probably still get a 100% perfect white under base (without pooling)...... However, since the white ink does not ALWAYS come out at 100% opacity (ie, it settles a bit, in the lines, or humidity is too low, etc), printing at 1440 x 1440, 100% ink deposit, ensures that the white under base always looks great, even when the white ink is not at 100%. Again, we actually have VERY FEW ISSUES with our ink clogging, ever - however, I do notice that the white is not ALWAYS as white as it could be; some of this might have something to do with the pretreatment process, as well, although it is not as exacting as it used to be.

- We print almost EVERYTHING in uni-directional mode, at the moment. Why? Well, I ask myself the same question, every damn day - why is it that every other printer on the planet seems to be able to print in bidirectional mode (INCLUDING THIS DIY UNIT, WHICH IS AWESOME!!!!!!), except for my machine??? Personally, I feel it is because the people who brought it to me didn't know how to properly tune it up, so that responsibility has fallen on my shoulders; eventually, I will have this thing printing in bi-directional mode - in the meantime, the incredible detail and repeatability that we are getting certainly takes the edge off the pain of slow production rates.... We have made some good progress in the past week or so, dialing in some various Epson settings to enable successful bidirectional printing, and we might actually be close..... Time will tell.

Well, hope that information helps! :D
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thanks for all the info...awesome thanks..:)

here is something you might want to try...download a trial of the ek for your printer of choice ...they have the bi directional mode setting that you can enable or disable... along with a bunch of cool table feed adjustments which can be fine tuned in every res...

think you might have fun with this..its quite a rip..imho that they have produced for the 1900 and im sure its features are the same for your printer of choice ..;) this is a new version..

P.S i have been told that multi-rip will be adding this table feed adjustment aswell for the diydtg's , I'm not sure if this will include the commercial rips..they all are prolly preset to there standards already...

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