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Reliable Source for XP600 Replacement Heads?


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  • TeedUp changed the title to Reliable Source for XP600 Replacement Heads?
3 hours ago, TeedUp said:

preferably inexpensive, but so far multiple sources, all crap

 new $200-$220 from China. That’s the price form audley direct anyway. That’s for the “ new pulls”. 
 

I think the “genuine” new heads from Epson ( not printer pulls) are about $550. 
 

anywhere else and it’s refurb crap that didn’t work. 

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21 hours ago, johnson4 said:

 new $200-$220 from China. That’s the price form audley direct anyway. That’s for the “ new pulls”. 
 

I think the “genuine” new heads from Epson ( not printer pulls) are about $550. 
 

anywhere else and it’s refurb crap that didn’t work. 

I bought half dozen from China from several different sources for around $100 a pop.  I imagine pulls or factory rejects, although it's still not clear to me the supply chain of Chinese made non-Epson compatibles. 

I figured if 25% were good I'd come out ahead of $400- $550 for one domestic authentic. But so far NOT so good, still one left to test, but thoroughly disillusioned.  Also, so much wasted time with cleaning, nozzle checks, and failed print runs. 

Not even considering life expectancy, just out of the box, Im wondering if my failure rate is par for the course or perhaps just a string of bad luck? 

I suppose many will say that's what I get buying from China, but I"ve had other good luck in the past.  Saved a boatload of money on the dual XP600 that I'm still coming out ahead on the total project cost so far, and mostly good luck on other things I've bought and sold through the years,

I had a pretty bad experience dealing with Audley sales and management on an aborted printer purchase.  No way I'm dealing with them again.  Maybe I'll look at some of the other "brands" that have at least a minimal reputation, unfortunately not a lot of faith in reliability there either,  no guarantees anyway. Probably will just spring for the real deal from Superstore, or other domestic reputable source,

...have to make decision soon.

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8 hours ago, TeedUp said:

I bought half dozen from China from several different sources for around $100 a pop.  I imagine pulls or factory rejects, although it's still not clear to me the supply chain of Chinese made non-Epson compatibles. 
 

I think they are all Epson made. The manifolds and adapters are not. The actual printhead is 100% only Epson. I think what is considered “ knock off” are printheads with different manifolds or adapters glued to the manifolds. These people pull the nozzle plates and forcefully clear them, and glue them back on. 90 percent of the time it doesn’t work right. 

I figured if 25% were good I'd come out ahead of $400- $550 for one domestic authentic. But so far NOT so good, still one left to test, but thoroughly disillusioned.  Also, so much wasted time with cleaning, nozzle checks, and failed print runs. 
 

I tried that too, all were junk except the  “new “ pulls from printers from audley. They glue adapters to the manifold. She said the printhead is pulled from a new printer and the manifold adapters are glued to it and shipped. 

Not even considering life expectancy, just out of the box, Im wondering if my failure rate is par for the course or perhaps just a string of bad luck? 
 

I think the market is oversaturated with the cheap xp600/fa1080. It’s because they were from discontinued cheap $70 home desktop dye based printers. It’s extremely profitable for them, then flooding the market with them dirt cheap is more profitable than tossing them when they are bad. I’m sure there is a percentage who don’t return them, or give up after the wall they face on returning cheap defective heads. 

I suppose many will say that's what I get buying from China, but I"ve had other good luck in the past.  Saved a boatload of money on the dual XP600 that I'm still coming out ahead on the total project cost so far, and mostly good luck on other things I've bought and sold through the years,

everything comes from China. It’s honest/dishonest sellers just like anywhere else. That cheap $30 knock off tablet or that $400 name brand- it’s all based on quality vs cost, not necessarily their capabilities. It’s all about finding the honest sellers selling the normal quality stuff, at a cheaper price instead of the garbage at a lower/mid price to make more profit. 

I had a pretty bad experience dealing with Audley sales and management on an aborted printer purchase.  No way I'm dealing with them again.  Maybe I'll look at some of the other "brands" that have at least a minimal reputation, unfortunately not a lot of faith in reliability there either,  no guarantees anyway. Probably will just spring for the real deal from Superstore, or other domestic reputable source,

me either, but that’s a large printer. I’ve tried to buy a 3rd audley A3 shaker for months now. But buying the printheads was simple, quick and easy. I also have a guy I’ve purchased parts from for years, like ink chips, cartridges, resetters. All that crap. Very honest, well priced and high quality. Personally they are a small reseller ( not audley) who understands quality matters for repeat customers. My film guy who uses train to get me film overseas in 20 days ( from ordered till delivered) is this same way, also a small business. He offered to go out of his way to help me import a large shaker very cheap with this train method even though that isn’t his business or normally sells those. He was serious and set me up with multiple options and even walked me through the importer process he uses- for free and offered to inspect the machines for me from over there before buying. I’ve purchased 400+ rolls of film from him in the last two years and never had a bad experience, he always takes care of it. Film is $65 a roll delivered and the best I’ve used from any supplier with a 20 day delivery timeframe. Even buying in the US with standard shipping I’m waiting 5-7 days. 

8 hours ago, TeedUp said:

...have to make decision soon.

I feel ya, I parked my xp600 machine. The original heads it came with were perfect, worked forever.  What killed them was a head strike due to the printer plate and it destroyed them and knock the carriage out of alignment. After fixing it and going through 4 “cheap” heads( that didn’t work) then the two heads from audley to finally get it working, it did it again for no reason within the hour. I got a few thousands prints from it as a whole but I’m done messing with it, i didn’t have the time anymore. I sell roughly $5,000-$10,000 gross in transfers a month small scale for other small businesses and focus on that instead. It’s not that it’s not good, I just don’t have time to deal with the Chinese printers and trying to source affordable quality parts. 
 

I instead went with an Epson that prints faster than the dual xp600 machine, even faster than the dual i3200 machines. Printheads are $1,000 direct from Epson and haven’t had to replace one yet, in over 6 months. Quality matters and I think OEM on the xp600 would make a huge difference. I just can’t pay the price for the lower quality printheads that were originally designed for a dye based $70 home printer at over $550 each. Especially if the machine keeps eating them. 
 

If it were me, I would try ( at least once) the OEM Epson original heads sold new from Epson to a printer manufacturer, not the printer pulls or cheap refurbs. If it wasn’t any or much different and keep having issues I’d ditch the printer. The idea is to focus on selling transfers, not fixing the printers. 
 

Epson will very likely soon release their own DTF printer, if there ink isn’t expensive or ends up with a chip bypass then I’m sure it will put a lot of these machines out of the door, so I’m avoiding investing much in the printer aspect.

 

I’m also 85 percent done designing my own 24” shaker that I could sell at a profit at $1,000( to give an idea of its price point to build). Modular with simple final assembly with pre assembled aspects, standard 120V outlet, no $1,200 shipping, no giant huge wasted space limitations or high/special power requirements. 

 

my point of the above- I was so frustrated with the costs, poor parts availability, and of course finding a unit to work fully properly as advertised and be delivered at a price point that I’m not constantly fully reinvesting ALL the profits making it all pointless was impossible, that I found my own way and put in less effort to do it myself. Coming from a guy who researches  and “wheels and deals”, and have done so since a small child. This time, it just always had a negative, an aspect that wasn’t as advertised, or overall a part would fail and literally couldn’t be replaced making it all pointless.  
I instead learned how to design parts, make 3D models, and sourced a cheap reliable company to bend, laser cut and powder coat my parts. So far it has been incredibly invigorating and successful, I can easy test each individual design instead of fixing the flaws of another machine.

 

I am constantly contacted to help problem solve. Design flaw with various machines and brands. 
 

im not falling for the same old game this industry has played for the last 15-20 years. That game is to make suppliers rich, while we think making the product is the bread and butter. It’s only beneficial for large businesses who gross 500K+, and still it’s a very large expensive. 

When an issue occurs it “isn’t the product, it’s the experience of the user”. That’s always been the excuse. I’m not a foot soldier who blindly follows command or listens to one point of view, I always stand back and look and fend for myself. 
 

the profit, it comes from, at least for me, not spending the high prices on machines and getting reliability so I can focus on the business, not the machines. If I paid full price for everything so far, I’d be almost broke after I factor in my federal/state tax rate. Not to mention the constant tinkering. Of course the learning curse and wasted dough finding the right machines and suppliers. 
 

That’s selling transfers at a mid tier price rate, far from the cheapest.

 

So overall, instead of being in your position I caved and went my own route, using Epson printers. I haven’t had to repair, problem solve, or literally do anything except print and customer service for the last 6 months. for 3 13” printers I get 63 linear foot an hour from them, cmyk+W. White or black only I get 126 linear foot. That’s with one of the shakers being my proto type for the aforementioned. That’s $220-$440 an hour of transfers from them combined.

All in it’s about 10k with redundancy in the event of failure. That’s roughly 60 hours of run time to pay for everything and break even, given no failures occurred which haven’t. New users starting out, even this is a lot any I didn’t start here. One unit is about $3,300 so it allows you to grow based on your needs. Not everyone will succeed even with the best printer, resell value on them is garbage so it saves losses too. 
 

it does consume more space this way and a bit more electric. But after paying 35% plus in taxes plus all other things considered, it gives me my profit margin and reliability I am looking for. 
 

that’s me though, because your specific situation seems to never end, at least when I was there. for me it was day after day feeling like that and wasting money day after day trying to just work. Eventually I saw the bill and failure rate and cut that out before it bled me dry. 
 

hopefully your decision comes easier, good luck! 

Edited by johnson4
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I also believe all the printheads are actually Epson. It’s the manifold, adapters, or rebuilt aspect that makes them poor quality. I think this non-Epson crap came from people who saw the aftermarket parts in the Epson head in rebuild and being uneducated on the matter. The Epson head technologies are patented, no one else in the world can make a piezo printhead without Epson’s permission. They sue over $5 ink cartridges, what do you think they would do over their printhead tech? 

no one can debunk this so it still circulates. 

think about it. If I can take bags of free trash printheads, clean and “ refurb them” and sell them at $100 a pop with a 80 percent failure rate, if I sold 10,000 of them this year that’s a million dollars profit. Now factor in the return rate, ( how many people eat the cost and don’t get a refund for various reason) they likely make over half a million a year. 
 

take this cheap printhead from a $70 home printer, and that is going to exacerbate the situation. So then this whole “ eco system” of printheads and models running these heads are run through the dirt, given a bad name. When other people see the profit in this and do the same,  it becomes impossible to get a quality printhead. 
 

that’s where it is right now in my opinion with this model. 

Edited by johnson4
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@johnson4, thank you for your thorough replies.

I burned through several XP15000's (actually 4, but it seems embarrassing to admit that kind of failure) and a time hole nightmare of maintenance before thinking dual XP600's were an attractive solution. I knew the heads wouldn't last long, but the low head cost factored into the analysis.  I just didn't expect this high of a failure rate.

So you mention your 3x13" machines.  I thought you were leaning in to the P5000 (17") in your recent preference? Which Epson is your preferred workhorse?

Edited by TeedUp
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7 hours ago, TeedUp said:

@johnson4, thank you for your thorough replies.

I burned through several XP15000's (actually 4, but it seems embarrassing to admit that kind of failure) and a time hole nightmare of maintenance before thinking dual XP600's were an attractive solution. I knew the heads wouldn't last long, but the low head cost factored into the analysis.  I just didn't expect this high of a failure rate.

So you mention your 3x13" machines.  I thought you were leaning in to the P5000 (17") in your recent preference? Which Epson is your preferred workhorse?

It can be quite embarrassing but I try to put out there how it happens, we all do it. that machine ended up costing me a lot of money and a ton of time- over something silly that shouldn’t have happened. It was great and is still great- I just can’t find heads reliably anymore due to the aforementioned so I can’t keep using it. Even just two high quality heads like it came with. 

 

 One time i replaced a P800 ( with a new p800) because of a head strike that was my fault. It had ran out of film and I didn’t catch it in time( roll printing). 
 

I got the new one set up, yeah… working good. 30 seconds in I realized I didn’t put the film roll holder in the slots and had set it on top of the bracket. I realized this when It fell off, head strike and killed a brand new printer in less than one minute of printing.  
 

I think the xp600 is a great printhead- if you can find a legit printhead. Whatever I received with my printer when it was new, didn’t have an issue at all from them. I was shocked at the performance- until the printer ate the film. I printed 20-30 foot of prints at a time without a single nozzle dropping. 
 

the P5000/P6000 are the printers I’m talking about using, as I had hoped, they were practically made for DTF, down to the last detail. Just don’t use crap-ro-rip if you don’t want to wait all day on your prints.  
 

They are 9 pin, so no one can resell them without a lawsuit from Epson. However,  you can use them. I’d really love to see what the i3200’s are about, but I sincerely dislike all the ”fine tuning” Chinese machines need constantly. the four head machines seem nice, but at 25k+ in this economy and not looking to be a giant business, it’s really too far out there for me. 
 

An Epson works out of the box- period. When it is time to replace the head- replace the whole machine, it’s cheaper. No underbase issues or alignments- it just works. Always has been my go to, maybe I am biased on it. 
 

 

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I consistently see two different Epson XP600 printhead part numbers: FA09050 & F1080.  I've heard explanations that they differ in their origin/authenticity, but that doesn't really seem to be consistent in in matching my expectations of certain vendors to which number they use.

Any idea the distinction, if any? Anyone?

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10 minutes ago, TeedUp said:

I consistently see two different Epson XP600 printhead part numbers: FA09050 & F1080.  I've heard explanations that they differ in their origin/authenticity, but that doesn't really seem to be consistent in in matching my expectations of certain vendors to which number they use.

Any idea the distinction, if any? Anyone?

I'm not sure, Possibly one of them came OEM with "damper" style manifolds and the other with the " sponge" style manifolds. They seem to work interchangeably. You can pull them from some of the XP printers, likely where the XP600 name came from. 

 

I have no actual data or knowledge on it though. All I know is I wanted to try the F1080 direct from Epson for a real comparison, I just didn't make it that far. 

 

All I know is its a 6 channel head, 2 of them at 360 nozzles per inch, 4 at 180. They double up the 4 180's to get 360 nozzles per inch for 4 color machines per head. It's pretty fast, but still a bit slower than a native 360 nozzle per channel head. I'm hoping on the P5000 they release an update for spot colors. It's a 10 channel 360X nozzle printer so I have two empty channels to work with, which has come in handy already in preventing having to replace a printhead. I wonder why the speed differences between them though.

 

Anyway, Hopefully you find an answer, I've been curious. If I can find an afordable quality printhead I'd definitely use the machine. 

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I'm not really clear on the whole locked/unlocked thing.  I often see the F1080's marked as unlocked, whereas I don't recall seeing a FA09050 for sale with that designation.

Might that mean that all the FA09050's are ALL unlocked, thereby not an issue to signify, while the F1080's could be locked if they were pulled out of another machine, thereby "unlocked" is important information? ? Or am I reading too much into it?

Edited by TeedUp
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1 hour ago, TeedUp said:

I'm not really clear on the whole locked/unlocked thing.  I often see the F1080's marked as unlocked, whereas I don't recall seeing a FA09050 for sale with that designation.

Might that mean that all the FA09050's are ALL unlocked, thereby not an issue to signify, while the F1080's could be locked if they were pulled out of another machine, thereby "unlocked" is important information? ? Or am I reading too much into it?

For the Chinese machines I don't think it matters. I've ordered and used several variations of the fa1080/xp600 without any issue, other than bad quality printheads like clogged nozzles etc. Half the time I just asked for the xp600 printhead with the damper style adapter and went with that. 

 

I know for Epson machines, it matters entirely if it is locked, unlocked, third locked, 2nd locked etc. 

 

I can't say for certain, but I personally haven't ran across it being an issue but I didn't dig that deep. After going through the 6 printheads I dropped it especially once I got the P5000 going and saw how fast it was and reliable, I ended up with 4 of those so that is where I personally stopped with it.

 

I know there are some who say that you can't pull the printhead from certain desktop printers and use them in the Chinese printers, like the i3200, it's also from a cheap desktop machine. First hand I haven't experienced it. For your scenario it may be worth reaching out to a supplier and asking, maybe cross reference the mainboard you have and reach out to the manufacturer or the sellers of those boards what versions of the printhead will work with it. Asking someone who sells printheads will likely not help or just tell you what you want to hear, as well as any information you get from random people will likely be muddled. 

 

I don't find it often that people look that far into anything, so if you do figure it out, I'd love to know too.

Edited by johnson4
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2 hours ago, johnson4 said:

For the Chinese machines I don't think it matters. I've ordered and used several variations of the fa1080/xp600 without any issue, other than bad quality printheads like clogged nozzles etc. Half the time I just asked for the xp600 printhead with the damper style adapter and went with that. 

 

I know for Epson machines, it matters entirely if it is locked, unlocked, third locked, 2nd locked etc. 

 

I can't say for certain, but I personally haven't ran across it being an issue but I didn't dig that deep. After going through the 6 printheads I dropped it especially once I got the P5000 going and saw how fast it was and reliable, I ended up with 4 of those so that is where I personally stopped with it.

 

I know there are some who say that you can't pull the printhead from certain desktop printers and use them in the Chinese printers, like the i3200, it's also from a cheap desktop machine. First hand I haven't experienced it. For your scenario it may be worth reaching out to a supplier and asking, maybe cross reference the mainboard you have and reach out to the manufacturer or the sellers of those boards what versions of the printhead will work with it. Asking someone who sells printheads will likely not help or just tell you what you want to hear, as well as any information you get from random people will likely be muddled. 

 

I don't find it often that people look that far into anything, so if you do figure it out, I'd love to know too.

I wasnt having a problem with locked/unlocked heads.  My point was just that if the part numbers are really interchangeable, then frequently seeing one promoted as unlocked has no meaning, which is entirely possible. 

Just wondered if it might be a clue to a potential difference between them (if one had to be unlocked, because they can become locked when used in Epson printer and removed, and the other wasn't even a question if locked (maybe part number designates it was manufactured specifically as a replacement part, or for sale to other non-epson printer mfgrs .)

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2 hours ago, TeedUp said:

I wasnt having a problem with locked/unlocked heads.  My point was just that if the part numbers are really interchangeable, then frequently seeing one promoted as unlocked has no meaning, which is entirely possible. 

Just wondered if it might be a clue to a potential difference between them (if one had to be unlocked, because they can become locked when used in Epson printer and removed, and the other wasn't even a question if locked (maybe part number designates it was manufactured specifically as a replacement part, or for sale to other non-epson printer mfgrs .)

Right, makes total sense and an excellent question. The only thing I would know would just be speculation and not anything factual. 
 

hopefully you figure it out
 

 

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