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I recently had a very aggravating problem with the print head on one of our 4880 printers. It was working great, then all of a sudden out we started getting all kinds of banding and horrible print quality! I ran a nozzle check and was missing the top half of every color and the bottom half was very spotted. So I ran severial head cleaning and things just seemed to get worse.

So I called the company I purchased my Hybrid system from and they had me run more head cleanings, wanted me to waste another $100 on PrintJockey software.(which they did end up sending me a free copy.) After I installed this software and ran more head cleanings on each channel there was still no improvement. I was about ready to through this thing in the trash and call it a right off hell I had already wasted close to a thousand Dollars in ink.

I decided to give sawgrass a call and see if they could help it is their ink. They were great they quickly explained to me that if after two head cleanings you still have a clog then your problem is probably somewhere else.They had me flush the capping station with an eyedropper and some cleaning solution and then had me remove the Flushing Box and clean it with warm running water under the sink. I only had to remove 1 easy to get to screw and the whole procedure took about ten minutes.

I believe my problem was the flushing box because it was completely clogged on the top and you could not even see the mesh over the filter, this is where your printer pulls ink through for head cleaning so if it is clogged you are just wasting ink and further clogging your head because the ink has no where to go.

After this simple and free maintenance the printer works great again. To get the print head out of the way just fallow the instructions to change the cutting blade this will move the head to the center position.

In the pic below you can see the capping station and the Flushing box. Just remove the carefully remove the screw and take out the Flushing box to clean.

Hope this helps someone as much as it did me.
 

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I have also been in contact with Sawgrass all week and went through all the steps you mentioned and I still have a clog in the Blue Channel. the same as before. Sawgrass had me soak the heads with Simple Green for 20 minutes as well but that did not seem to help. They are now FED eXing me 2 free cartridges so I can do the next step which is a Power Clean.

The company I bought my printer from wants me to soak the print heads over night instead of just 20 minutes so I am donig that right now before I do the power clean. Because if the Power Clean does not work, Sawgrasses next step is to do a full flush of the system. At this point I am dumping all this money trying to determine it is a clogged head and if it isn't, I get a new printer but have invested $2,400 in sawgrass to get up and running with the replacement printer. There has to be a better way!!
 

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The Company I bought the printer also suggested I use Windex instead of Simple Green and also saturate a small swatch of t-shirt material and place it on the Capping Station. I have not done that yet I will wait to see how the simple green overnight does first.

Is this fix because the Windex is stronger and saturating material instead of the capping station will keep the fluid next to the heads longer without going into the maintenance tank? I was afraid to try this method until I got a little more feedback.
Has anyone else heard of this? I really do not want to do a power Cleaning if I don't have to.
 

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I don't know about printer heads but I would stay away from Windex because it really pits up surfaces other than glass pretty fast. It was popular to use in the Airbrushing industry to clean clogged airbrushes and it worked great except the more you used it the more clogs you got and the harder they where to get out. Has your printer ever had the stock Epson inks in it?
 

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Thanks for the input on the Windex, It sounded like a harsh way to go. I will try the Simple Green overnight trick. Have you heard of soaking a swatch and placing it on the capping station. Is this to keep the solution from going down the to the maintenance tank. My concern was it would also keep the clogged ink from draining as well. Kinda like when the Capping station is all gunked up.

My printer has never had the stock cartriges in it but I am holding onto them in case I have to return the printer. In fact you just gave me a great idea.

Can I do all these trouble shooting steps using the Epson inks and save from wasting all the sub inks. Or after purging the ink in the lines and then having to recharge them later pretty much going to wast as much as the Powerclean? If the Powerclean does not work and Sawgrasses next step is the full flush and recharge, shouldn't I at least use the Epson inks after that. I have seen brand new sets of 4880 carts on ebay going for just a little over 100.00 that is less than one Sawgrass cartridge. Troubleshooting with regular ink sounds like a better idea to me. I realize that Sub ink is thicker than regular ink but it would still either clear the clog or determine that it is a faulty head right?

Boy I just do not know which way to go.
 

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I would ask Sawgrass if their is going to be a reaction between the two inks. I am pretty sure if you look on their website under the trouble shooting section for the c120 they tell you to test the print head with the epson Ink, but I am not sure if I am remembering that correctly or not. I have a Chromablast hybrid sub so I don't have all that much experience with the sub ink.
 

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The best way to flush the system would be to see if you can get a hold of some refillable cartridges and some cleaning fluid. I am not sure what the price is on the 4880 refillable cartridges if there are any out there. For the 4800, I got the 8 refillable cartridges and cleaning fluid from www.dtginks.com for around $130.00 (i.e. below the cost of one Sawgrass cartridge). I know that some of the companies doing dtg printers use refillable carts for their modified 4880 printers, so they have to be out there. Just depends on what price you can buy them for.

I have also heard that some types of Windex has wax in it that can clog up your maintenance station. I have heard positive things from dtg owners about the Clog Prevention Solution / Clog Buster product. Because it is thicker, you can only put this stuff in the maintenance station. I think it is only about $15 at DTGInks.com as well. Might be worth the try before you start flushing the entire ink system. If you do flush your ink system, make sure that you get a chip resetter or a new waste tank.

Hope these are some alternatives that will give you and Sawgrass some things to think about.

Mark
 

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Well, I soaked the heads in Simple Green for 18 hours and now the machine is running perfect. I wonder why Sawgrass does not suggest a longer soak time. Now I will just have to wait and see if the blue channel stays free for more than a couple days. Because in the past, after freeing it up it clogged again. But so far so good, maybe I just had to really get some nasty clog that kept reappearing. Is this something that can happen while charging the system up for the first time because this has been the case since owning the 4880.
 

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i,m an european and sometimes I misunderstand some of the trade names of a few of your products, so could anyone be nice and tell me what Simp0le green is?
 

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Ino,

Simple Green (Simple Green) is just a household cleaner that is not as harsh on plastics and other parts found in equipment. It is also reported that it does not have the wax that some of the Windex brands have. So it tends to be a good way to clear clogs in printheads without damaging them. If that does not work, there is an official capping station solution from Epson that most of the distributors can provide... but that might be the last resort. Hope this clarifies things for you.

Mark
 

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Heres somthing I read about in a trade mag. Harvey Head Cleaner keeps heads clean If you don't use your printer every day this program keeps heads clear. I'm thinking of getting it. Also another thing to try is a sponge in a dish to keep the moister high inside printer because it's too dry where you have the printer. I'm trying that trick now
 

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Another option to Harvey Head cleaner is Printer Jockey. I chose this over Harvey Head Cleaner because it will run Daily prints but it will also allow you to select that channel that is giving you problems and work on just that head instead of cleaning all heads. The flush wasn't succesful against my really screwd up blue head but neither was Sawgrasse's PRN files you run through the Print Spooler and Printer Jockey is 100 times faster to work with than the Sawgrass PRN files. But if you are broke and need to address flushing specific heads you can get permission from Sawgrass and they will give you a password to download thier PRN files to run through your spooler. It works like Printer Jockey except you cannot adjust the amount of ink layed down like you can in Printer Jockey.
 

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I had this same problem and could see ink build up on top of flushing box. Removed this and flushed under hot water. Found applying small amounts of IPA between flushing with water removed clogging well. Once I had done this, dried it and re-installed and completed a nozzle check the print is perfect again. Wouldn't recomend using IPA on print head but no problem on the flushing box part so long as rinsed thoroughly with hot water.
 

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hi there all,

I am having a problem with my epson cx5900 printer using sublimation inks. The magenta ink head is completely blocked and not printing at all. I have returned both my printers (both had the exact same problem)to my supplier but they are not having any luck and it has now been a week and my business is taking a knock and I am at my wits end because i really dont want to buy another printer and end up with the same problems. I was hoping that someone can give me some advise on why this is happening with the same colour on all my printers, am I doing something wrong? I am quite new to sublimATION AND GOING MAD.......PLEASE help me.
 

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I use rubbing alcohol. Squirt with syringe filled with alcohol on all the foam in the capping station until saturated. Let sit overnight. Works for me every time. There is also a very thin strip of foam that acts as a head wiper. I saturate that too.
 

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Thanks Luis, will give it a go. Will let you know if it helps. hope so 'coz i am losing so much valentines business.
 

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Hey Guys -

Have seen numerous posts about "soaking" the print heads in Simple Green. I have one color that isn't printing perfectly and I wanted to try it.

Where exactly do you put the solution to soak the head? Is it the capping station? How much solution do you put in it? Anything else I should try?

May seem like an obvious question, but I didn't see the apparent answer.

BTW, the photo in the first post was very nice - helped me locate and clean out the flushing box! Thanks.
 
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