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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am getting a low ink level on my 4880. I was told by one vendor to buy a mailing scale and weigh the carts to find out which cart was low but they all weighed 4 or 5 ounces. I don't have the cash to buy 8 carts at 150 bucks a pop and was hoping to just buy the carts that were low. What are some better ideas to pinpoint the actual cart that is setting off the alarm.

Also, everyone says to avoid the POWERCLEAN option. is that the same thing as when Epson asks you if you want to do "auto clean" when you do a Head Cleaning.

I have only done about 40 shirts (Line Art) a few tiles and coasters and I am already getting this signal.

I do seem to have to do a head cleaning like once a week? Is this normal. This machine is new to me. It is replacing my old 1280 systems which were about the same performance for 100.000s less.
 

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It's perfectly normal. Basically you'll never know what the ink levels are since the ink being used in the 4880 was not created by Epson. Essentially what you need to do is run your printer at least once a day (or every other day). This will ensure that the ink doesn't get stuck in the print head. I wouldn't recommend doing the 'Powerclean' option as you will waste A LOT of ink.

Nonetheless to solve your current problem, what I have had success with is: (1) follow the Epson instructions for changing the paper cutting blade. This will allow you to move the 'print head' to the center section of the carriage so you can see the 'Capping Station.' (2) Once you see the capping station apply a few drops of water using an eyedropper to the foam part of the capping station. Let your printer sit for about 12 hours and reprint.

PS Please send me a PM, I'd like to know where you purchased your 4880.

Hope this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I do run my printer daily, even If I don't have anything to run Printer Jockey runs an auto print for me. I will have a clog the day after running 10 logos. I am wondering if something else is up with this thing. Once I run a head Cleaning or two I am usually back in business ( a few times I had to run an Auto Clean) but now I am getting a low ink warning. The Machine is Brand New with eight new Sublijet cartidges ($1200.00 value) and I have sold about $700.00 worth of product. At this rate I need to up my shirts from $13.00 to $50.00 a pop (LOL). I still have a coupon for two free
sublijet carts from Sawgrass so my hopes are to solve the clogging problem first of all and second pinpoint the low ink carts so I can earn a little more cash to buy the rest of the carts. I must say this whole ordeal has made me sick to my stomach. I got out of the business because of my 1280 bulk system problems. I thought sinking more money into a premo setup would let me sleep better but now I sleep worse cause now I still have the problems and now I spend more money cleaning the heads for a particular job than the actual job pays.

I need help!!!
 

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I have a Epson 4800. I am surprised that the newer(?) machine can't tell you what ink is low??
I have a graph on my printer and on my computer screen showing how much ink I have in each cartridge. It lets me know when I am getting low, and when it is out. I have only used my power clean a couple of times. I always use the nozzle check before running it, and 90% of the time I'm good to go. If not, I just do a cleaning, not a power clean. I have been very happy with my machine so far. I have bought ink much cheaper on ebay if you are patient, it will come up. Just check expiration dates.
 

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Are you using the orginal sublijet acrtridges that came with the 4880? When first setting up the priner it uses about half the ink in the cartridges. I use half Sublijet and half Chromablast carridges and I get a level indcation on my screen not sure why you are not. The monitor program that came with printer should also tell you how much ink you have left. Good luck.
 

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Carl,

Do you have a 4800 or a 4880? Because of the security Epson put on their chips, the only cartridges that you can tell have a level of ink on them are the Epson OEM cartridges. So any non-OEM Epson cartridges will provide you an outlined box for the ink levels once you install them.

You are correct that you will use a large amount of ink to fill the lines and printhead. However, I still get a full box when I do this with my 4800. I think there is something going on with the 4880 printers that is causing them to clog more than the 4800. Tom just posted above how his maintenance station was not working properly and resulted in him getting clogged nozzles. So the 4880 owners might have to do something additional (i.e. put drops of cleaning solution in the maintenance station every night like we do with dtg printers) to keep the printer running properly.

It is important to understand that there are three ways to use ink besides printing on to the paper and the user can only control two of them:

1. Running a nozzle check. This uses a pretty small amount of ink. I have been told it is around 0.3 ML of ink.

2. Head Cleanings and Power Cleans. This uses more ink - head cleaning around 4 - 5 MLs of ink and a Power Clean up to 80 MLs of ink (not sure how accurate these numbers are). I believe that you can run a similar report like we have on the Epson 4800 and it will tell you exactly how much ink was used for the recent jobs you did and the cleanings show up. If you want these instructions, Conde has them in their customer login area for the 4800. Should work for the 4880.

NOTE: Try not to turn your printer off. If you do turn it off or if you lose power, do not agree to do the cleaning the screen ask you when the printer starts up. Decline this and then do a nozzle check. A lot of time, this cleaning is not needed and just waste ink.

3. The Epson firmware tells the printhead to spit ink into the waste tank periodically based off of the number of times ink has been fired through the nozzles. Epson did this as a preventative maintenance procedure to try and keep all the nozzles firing properly. We typically mark up the ink cost for the ink calculators in dtg RIPs around 20% or so to cover the three items listed above when it comes to budgeting.

So, if Cory was running a lot of head cleanings and nozzle checks... combined with the Epson firmware, then there could be a large amount of ink loss. Cory can check his waste tank and see what the reading is for how full it is see. If the waste tank is more than half full, then he has lost a lot of ink.

Hope that Sawgrass can help Cory out. Best wishes.

Mark
 

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I have a 4880 and have had no clogging problems. If not using I print a small logo at least once a week using the sublijet and chromablast inks so actually two prints. I agree that doing the recommended head cleanings only depletes the ink faster. After the printer setup I have half box indications for sublijet but full box for chromablast. Most of printing I do is with sublijet. Hopefully sawgrass can assist.

Carl
 

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Carl,

You are the first person that I have heard that can get ink levels on your 4880 printer with Sawgrass inks. Do you have any clue what you did to get the ink levels to show up? Are you using the OEM cartridges and just switched out the ink bladders? (This is the only way that I am aware of how to do it, but it requires you to get new Epson cartridges each time). Would love to know how you did it.

Mark
 

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Mark

I never used the OEM inks that came with the system just started out with the sublijet and chromablast inks. Really not sure why I have been lucky. The levels have always showed up and I also check them using the monitor program that shows me the ink levels as well as the maintenance tank level.


Carl
 

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just pull out each cartridge and feel it...you can tell the empty one.

And also, in my experience, once you pull it out and put it back in...the printer will actually read that it is empty.
I've pulled out all the cartridges...put them back in....and let the printer do it's thing to get ready to print, and then it will tell you which cartridge is empty.
 
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