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NebraskaTrevor last won the day on September 4 2019

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  1. If you are going to work on converting one of these printers the very first thing you should do is download the full factory service manual which can be found by using the Google machine. I strongly suggest printing all 400 or so pages of it. It will be worth it's weight in ink as you work thru your conversion....which is not simple by any means. Sadly my printer has been sitting over 6 months unused I just haven't found the uses for it that I thought I would. If I could recapture even half of the time and money I dank into it I surely would...but it was a fun project.
  2. Some of your information is good, some of it is completely wrong. I will try to hit a few highpoints. The UV ink is not acidic, and even if it was most plastics dont care about acid. Rather it is quite "aggressive" it contains plasticizers and other agents that make it very rapidly etch into the surface of many materials. That is what allows it to attach itself firmly to many surfaces without a pretreatment, but it is of course something to deal with in the design phase since the materials that need to be in direct contact must be compatible with it so that the parts are not destroyed. You speak of teflon and although I have no personal experience with it I have no doubt it will likely work. Personally I would not use teflon due to its very weak mechanical properties. I can tell you for certain after my own experience and after seeking some technical help from my ink supplier that the following materials are suitable for direct contact with the inks. Delrin(acetal) Aluminum, stainless steel, brass and for the tubing LDPE. The stock Dx5 print head has been completely unaffected by the ink after well over a year. Myn ink tanks are milled out of solid blocks of Delrin and they have had ink sitting in them for a long time with zero problems. I have been using the stock capping station with no problems as well. I did have to replace the waste ink tank once as it was becoming quite 'Soft" from the ink and I did not want it to spill its guts all over the workbench again. For the UV light I used an adjustable constant current power supply so that I can carefully limit the voltage and current going to the LED. I am also underdriving it by about 1/3 below stated output to hopefully conserve its lifespan since it wasn't cheap by any means. For water cooling I am using a closed loop PC cooling fan/Pump/radiator connected with some clear vinyl tubing. CMYK Uv inks for all their troubles do have one wonderful property. They do not quickly dry out, clog, or otherwise cause many circulation problems as long as you keep them out of the light. I was told by my supplier that the ink will actually last longer when exposed to oxygen. The white ink is a whole other story. It is so full of suspended solids that it is extremely prone to settling, seperating, and clogging. White ink is a major pain in the butt, but if you need it you need it. If you can live without it your life will surely be easier. Good luck in your endeavours!!!
  3. Agreed/ My led is only about 3/4" wide although even then it just barely misses the frame. I do wish my printer was as finished in appearance of the one shown in the video. It is far from it, mostly all open. I saved all of the epson plastic but I haven't attempted to attach any of it yet.
  4. I am sorry but I have no idea how the ink system on the 1390 is designed. I doubt that the viscosity of the ink is your problem, and likely that aspect is completely beyond your control. It is what it is and there is no reasonable way to change it. I can imagine that you will need to figure the correct balance for your system so that ink will flow to the heads, but not run out of them when they are just sitting. Fo me that required me to find the perfect height at which to place my ink tanks, but you will need to do some experimenting. Good luck!
  5. Adam, it is not that I wont but given the diffirences in machines, fixtures and tooling it is really silly tobsharebg code. Unless you happen to have the exact same machine as me it would basically be useless! Thanks for thw interest.
  6. I had to replace everything except for the print head itself and the distribution manifold right above it. Everything else was ruined by the ink.
  7. Hello, the code is quite easy, just use one of the all in one boards from the forum sponsor and hook everything up as shown and the included code will work quite nicely. The aio board made that part of the conversion way easier than I could have imagined, it was actually the easiest part of the project. Good luck with your project!
  8. Excellent Idea, when I built mine I got it working and sorted out all of the various mechanical and electrical problems first while it had the stock ink in it. Then I converted from the aqueous to the UV ink. I blindly assumed that it would be no big deal to convert the ink, little did I know at the time that most of the major challenges of the project would lie in the ink conversion Good luck and let us know when you start a build thread!
  9. So far no problems with the capping station...knock on wood, but as i mentioned I do all of my purging and cleaning manually with gravity so very little ink makes it into the capping station/ waste ink tank. Given more time I may find additional problems pop up there as well! It looks like your 7600 is much better supported and the fact that you can buy those cartridges will be a huge plus and save a ton of effort. the bulk tanks pictured also look very promising, and I like that each tank has a stirring motor, it is essential for white, and nice for the colors. Be sure to start a thread and post some pictures of the progress when you get going, that way it will be searchable for someone in the future who works on a 7600/9600!
  10. I am making a broad assumption that the ink system on the 7600 operates basically the same as the system on the 3800/3880 however that may not be a safe assumption so you will need to do some reading. Here are the problems I am guessing you will face. Even if you make the needles out of Aluminum the rubber seals on the end of the mylar ink bags that seal around the needle get attacked by the ink, therefore you will still have pressurized ink squirting out of the cartridges in a short amount of time. in my opinion the stock cartridges with their pressurized bladders will not be usable at all since the soft parts of the seals get attacked, esp by the white ink which is by far the most aggressive. Also the plastic "backplane" that is behind those needles and has very precise channels in it to get the ink the manifold where the hoses attach will also likely be attacked. Even if you overcome that problem the pressurized system will not work with the UV safe dampers....at least the 3 types I tried. If you try to pressurize or blow through a stock Epson damper you will find that it does not allow for free flow rather there is a series of 2 pressure balanced valves that only allow more fluid through when the pressure on the print head side has dropped and created suction. Think of the pressure as getting the ink reliably up to the damper, but the epson damper is a very complex machine in and of itself with multiple soft moving parts that carefully and accurately let just enough of that pressurized ink to pass through. Only after many hours of head scratching and frustration and lots of reading was I able to realize that without the complex epson dampers a pressurized system would be a no go. By contrast the Chinese UV dampers that are all over the internet do not have any valves or pressure checks in them, only a filter screen and their soft sides that allow them to absorb some pressure variations. There is nothing inside any of them (that I tried) which will serve to reduce the pressure provided by the Epson system and accurately meter ink into the print head manifold. I would love to see someone prove my wrong but I dont think that a pressurized delivery system can be pulled off with UV ink. The ink itself is just too "aggressive". A Nazdar application specialist did a nice job of explaining to me that although there are no solvents in UV ink there are several plasticizers and other components that cause it to aggressively attach itself to whatever it comes in contact with. This is of course a good thing as you want the ink to ultimately stick to whatever you applied it to, but it is also what makes the ink somewhat difficult to work with. Continued good luck with your project, I can assure you it is extremely frustrating at times, but at the same time very rewarding when you finally get it to work.
  11. Hello David, glad to hear the thread could be of some benefit. The 7600 should make a beast of a printer! I had one once, they are huge even in stock form. I looked at the pics you attached and although the ink system parts you show are not identical to the 3800 they look like close cousins. Now for what you dont want to hear. I was not able to use a single part of the Epson ink system besides the print head and the manifold that sets on top of it. Everything else had to be replaced because it was destroyed within minutes, hours, or days. The ink cartridges and needles were my first indication something was wrong. I had filled all of my cartridges and inserted them just before powering the printer up. Within minutes I had ink pouring, literally pouring out of the printer frame. Long story short it had eaten through the needles and valves of the cartridges and the air pump was more than happy to squeeze it out all over the place. What an expensive smelly mess that was to clean up. As a result I had to redo the entire ink delivery system over the next several weeks. I now use the empty gutted out cartridges and their receptacles sitting off to the side just to fool the printer into thinking it has full OEM cartridges in place. When they get low I just spend a few minutes to go thru the procedure to reset all 9 of them at one time since it involves several power cycles to get it done. My current setup which has been working well for over a month now consists of the following. Delrin (trade name for Acetal polymer) plastic ink thanks that I machined from solid blocks of plastic serving as containers for the 5 colors of ink. Some plastic tubing made of linear low density polyethylene, here is a link. https://www.mcmaster.com/#catalog/124/163/=1dlxzmd I connected the tubing using chrome plated brass fittings and that seems to be working well so far. I also used Chinese made UV dampers on top of the stock Epson Manifold. I capped off the line coming from the air pump built into the printer so now it just builds pressure and is happy. Without that the printer will not make it through its startup cycle. Now for what proved to be the trickiest part to figure out, but one of the simplest parts in operation, hopefully the following description will help make it easier for you to figure out to suit your printer: Since the printer in stock form used very precise dampers with multiple valves in the dampers and in the rest of the ink system it is not a simple as providing pressurized ink to the print head as I had blindly assumed. I was originally housing the ink in stainless steel water bottles that could pressurize but that resulted in ink continually flowing out of all 8 rows of nozzles on my head......what a mess! I did some reading of Epson patents to try and wrap my head around how the print head actually works. Here is the trick it needs a continuous supply of ink.....of course, but that supply at the head has to be at a neutral pressure, or even a very slight negative pressure or vacuum. In practice this condition is quite simple to achieve, but it took a ton of trial and error to get it figured out. Each time before I print and before I turn the printer on I manually move the head off the capping station and place some paper towels below it. I then raise my ink tanks carefully up about 12 inches (30 CM) above the print head. This results in pressurized ink that then flows fairly freely from the print head. I wipe it a few times to ensure ink is coming from all 8 channels. I then lower the ink tanks back down to its resting point, about 1 inch (2.5 CM) below the print head nozzle level. When I do that the dampers all contract and the ink stops flowing from the print head. I give the print head a final wipe with rubbing alcohol and park it back on the capping station before powering the printer on. It sounds like a pain but it only takes about a minute and is a great way of ensuring that all 8 channels are primed and ready to print. I am now able to print seemingly as much as I want and more ink will be siphoned up into the print head as it sprays ink out without any problem. I do however repeat this process anytime the printer has been shut off and allowed to sit. This vacuum or negative pressure condition also has the added benefit of preventing ink form flowing out when the printer is off and the print head is parked over the capping station. One final word of caution. I am using Made in USA Nazdar brand uv ink( they will ship all over the world) and it is tested and safe for Epson DX print heads. They have an excellent tech support department who were very willing to help me through the process and without their advise I may not have been successful. I have read that Asian ink is even more aggressive and really tears stuff up.. The Nazdar ink is only marginally more expensive than the Asian stuff but in my opinion it is a cheap form of insurance to prevent early failure of a 800 USD print head! Best of luck with your conversion I Hope it goes well for you!!!! Trevor
  12. I got white ink plumbed in today and did some test prints. Definately a whole different animal that will require lots of testing. After a few hours of testing and tweaking rip settings I got to this point. The top one is done in 2 passes, and the one on the bottom was done in one pass with white and color in a single pass. It looks 95 pct as good in 50 pct of the time so it is probably the way to go. I still need to make several adjustments. I also found out that the white ink tends to form a misty fog when sprayed, clearly this is no good at all, and does further emphasize the need for me to implement some positive ventilation to remove the vapors to the outside. I want to do that anyhow to help with the smell and I already have a 4" exhaust port through the wall right next to the printer to serve the laser. I think I need to build a little enclosure box and suck through it with a bathroom fan or something similar. As I said lots of tweaki,g to do but it is quite promising to print colors on something that is black!
  13. More play...errrr ,experimenting today with settings in the top software. I worked on some plastic business cards to see how resolutions and ink levels affected the print, and the print time. Interesting, they sure do look nice in person.
  14. More playing around today. I printed on some stainless, some mdf , and some tightly woven but stretchy fabric. All three turned out great. I was especially impressed with the fabric sample it looks amazing. I did some reading about uv printing on shirts. It turns out that it is crucial to ensure a complete cure because if it isn't fully cured some of the components of the ink can prove to be significant skin irritants. After getting some of the ink on my hands I can attest to that. My light seems to do an excellent job of curing the ink, but laying it out in the sun for a while after it prints is probably cheap insurance. I will try to print on a white shirt this week and start wearing it to see how it handles some washes.
  15. I was at home depot looking for something white and cheap to print on.....4x4 ceramic tiles for 16 cents each. Jackpot! I printed my logo on one, it is amazing in person, very happy.
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