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p600- Any idea why clogs happen even while printing (printer not sitting)


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So I just converted this Epson P600

This is the second printer I killed. Well at least the printhead. (The first one has its motherboard fried)

So like the first one that I have converted, it is running smoothly. All colors are showing, no clogs. Perfect nozzle check. After printing for a while on the same day, baaaam black doesn’t print anymore. What baffles me is in both the first and second printer, the whites are perfect. I have read posts saying whites are the easiest to build up and clog but I never had problem with whites.

So I did head cleans, ink charges, shoe polish method, wet capping overnight and flushed the manifold first before the going for the nozzles. I even flushed the lines but no luck. The clog is solid and I can feel the pressure while trying to waterfall the printhead so I just stopped before I killed it completely.

Any help would be appreciated. I’ve lost so much money trying to build a DTF printer. At this point chinese printers are pretty enticing. My L1800 from China never had a major clog 🥲

I’m attaching my prints here. As you can see the black ink is totally fine before it suddenly clogged. Don’t mind the scratches, it wasn’t there when I printed it. 

 

4B71D6CF-AA77-40BE-B5D1-C78008529E29.jpeg

58A8001D-A58E-4C84-BD08-FE52F2FD5BF2.jpeg

8B2E14C9-E2F6-41C9-9EAE-7EAEF73FD7BC.jpeg

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Anytime I have manually cleaned the printhead in this machine, even being as gentle as possible- I always end up with a bad printhead in some form. Issue after issue after issue.

 

Some Epson heads are more fragile than others. The DX11 and TFP printhead are resilient compared to any other printheads I have worked with from Epson or any other company. These machines, Anytime I put enough pressure to " waterfall" it was the end of the printhead. Not an instant death, but it would never print correctly again. Things like dropped colors, nozzles, print a page fine then nothing- etc. The p600/P800 share the same printhead, at least in design. The P800 head works in the P600, but not the other way around. 

 

You can buy an adapter that you bolt the printhead to, that SUCKS the fluid from the printhead. It's a kit. It has one cleaning line/syringe on each "nipple" in the head. Then you suck that channel with another syringe. This doesn't put pressure pushing outwards, rather a suction which is preferred. 

 

The white ink takes time to cause issues, and only really if you are low volume printing or letting it sit for days at a time. That would be separation in the ink lines/ink bay and then clogging the dampers. 

 

Me personally, to flush the printhead I use 1. The adapter I talk about to create a " suction". anything over 2-3PSI  in " pressure" causes damage. You need more than that to create the waterfall effect.. or 2. a spare P600 filled with only cleaning solution and clean the printhead over the course of a few days along with wet capping the head with cleaning solution. 

 

I have killed over 5 P600 heads- each time the final straw was manually flushing it. Once I stopped doing that and letting the printer handle the cleaning it was easy going. Unrelated, Also cleaning the ink bay for the white ink to prevent that side of issues- They ran flawlessly after that. 

 

Another thing to consider is your ink. I buy my stuff from DTFSUPERSTORE. If I remember correctly they say the CMYK ink is good for 12 months. Me personally, ever since I started using their (the cheap not wide format) ink It's more like 6 months. I mean that, a hard 6 months.

My experience: 

 

The CMYK ink following the printed date on the bottom of the bottle loaded into 3 different machines. No issues. Works great. Randomly I will get that issue of a clog, so I do a clean and while that clog comes out, another comes in it's place. over and over. They'll also drop out mid print ( not entirely, just nozzles). When I go look at the ink I am using it is always 6 months or older. 

 

So I tested this theory of course. I used a brand new machine. Loaded the older ink ( 6-8 month old from date on bottom of bottle) and the same occurred right away. I simply loaded in fresher ink ( 2-3 months old) and the problem is gone once I flush the ink lines of the old ink.  One head clean a day and not another thing after that for months. I did this a few different times on different machines. Same results, new or old. So I put that theory into action keeping in mind the date on the bottle. 

 

As a result, I throw away any CMYK ink over 6 months old and only order what I need for that timeframe. I no longer experience this at all with this specific CMYK ink. Every now and again I will get a cyan that doesn't "mix" well with the white ink, but it doesn't cause any issues, just turns the white layer cyan in the cyan heavy spots. Iv'e only had 2 bottles like this out of maybe 20 liters.  I also noticed ink that is "open" should be sealed well. It seems to " thicken" even with the lid closed tightly. I put mine in zip lock bags after opening with the air removed and it stopped doing that. 

 

So- To put it plainly, It could also be your ink. I tried Kodak ink, but the yellow doesn't work with DTFSUPERSTORE's white ink at all. I won't use any other white ink, as this is the best white ink I have found so I am sticking with it and am using the CMYK ink from there as well. 

 

I have used over 100 rolls of film with this ink and have it down to a T what to do and what not to do, as well as the symptoms and solutions from printer maintenance to supply issues. 

 

I personally have tested Kodak inks ( DTFSUPERSTORE "super inks), Wide format inks, regular ink from DTFsuperstore, STS inks, and random chinese branded inks. I get the best most repeatable results from DTFsuperstore so that is what I use and stick with. I Just watch for the dates.

 

If you research ( with photos under a microscope) how an Epson printhead works, you will be amazed anyone does half the stuff they do to them. Let the machine handle it, fix the real problem and don't end up wasting money. Some people get lucky, some lie about it or repeat what others have said with no bearing on what they are saying. If you held everyone accountable for their advice, I doubt this would be done to printheads as often as it is- at least the way people are doing it. 

 

Good luck!

 

 

Edited by johnson4
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5 minutes ago, johnson4 said:

Anytime I have manually cleaned the printhead in this machine, even being as gentle as possible- I always end up with a bad printhead in some form. Issue after issue after issue.

 

Some Epson heads are more fragile than others. The DX11 and TFP printhead are resilient compared to any other printheads I have worked with from Epson or any other company. These machines, Anytime I put enough pressure to " waterfall" it was the end of the printhead. Not an instant death, but it would never print correctly again. Things like dropped colors, nozzles, print a page fine then nothing- etc. The p600/P800 share the same printhead, at least in design. The P800 head works in the P600, but not the other way around. 

 

You can buy an adapter that you bolt the printhead to, that SUCKS the fluid from the printhead. It's a kit. It has one cleaning line/syringe on each "nipple" in the head. Then you suck that channel with another syringe. This doesn't put pressure pushing outwards, rather a suction which is preferred. 

 

The white ink takes time to cause issues, and only really if you are low volume printing or letting it sit for days at a time. That would be separation in the ink lines/ink bay and then clogging the dampers. 

 

Me personally, to flush the printhead I use 1. The adapter I talk about to create a " suction". anything over 2-3PSI  in " pressure" causes damage. You need more than that to create the waterfall effect.. or 2. a spare P600 filled with only cleaning solution and clean the printhead over the course of a few days along with wet capping the head with cleaning solution. 

 

I have killed over 5 P600 heads- each time the final straw was manually flushing it. Once I stopped doing that and letting the printer handle the cleaning it was easy going. Unrelated, Also cleaning the ink bay for the white ink to prevent that side of issues- They ran flawlessly after that. 

 

Another thing to consider is your ink. I buy my stuff from DTFSUPERSTORE. If I remember correctly they say the CMYK ink is good for 12 months. Me personally, ever since I started using their (the cheap not wide format) ink It's more like 6 months. I mean that, a hard 6 months.

My experience: 

 

The CMYK ink following the printed date on the bottom of the bottle loaded into 3 different machines. No issues. Works great. Randomly I will get that issue of a clog, so I do a clean and while that clog comes out, another comes in it's place. over and over. They'll also drop out mid print ( not entirely, just nozzles). When I go look at the ink I am using it is always 6 months or older. 

 

So I tested this theory of course. I used a brand new machine. Loaded the older ink ( 6-8 month old from date on bottom of bottle) and the same occurred right away. I simply loaded in fresher ink ( 2-3 months old) and the problem is gone once I flush the ink lines of the old ink.  One head clean a day and not another thing after that for months. I did this a few different times on different machines. Same results, new or old. So I put that theory into action keeping in mind the date on the bottle. 

 

As a result, I throw away any CMYK ink over 6 months old and only order what I need for that timeframe. I no longer experience this at all with this specific CMYK ink. Every now and again I will get a cyan that doesn't "mix" well with the white ink, but it doesn't cause any issues, just turns the white layer cyan in the cyan heavy spots. Iv'e only had 2 bottles like this out of maybe 20 liters.  I also noticed ink that is "open" should be sealed well. It seems to " thicken" even with the lid closed tightly. I put mine in zip lock bags after opening with the air removed and it stopped doing that. 

 

So- To put it plainly, It could also be your ink. I tried Kodak ink, but the yellow doesn't work with DTFSUPERSTORE's white ink at all. I won't use any other white ink, as this is the best white ink I have found so I am sticking with it and am using the CMYK ink from there as well. 

 

I have used over 100 rolls of film with this ink and have it down to a T what to do and what not to do, as well as the symptoms and solutions from printer maintenance to supply issues. 

 

I personally have tested Kodak inks ( DTFSUPERSTORE "super inks), Wide format inks, regular ink from DTFsuperstore, STS inks, and random chinese branded inks. I get the best most repeatable results from DTFsuperstore so that is what I use and stick with. I Just watch for the dates.

 

If you research ( with photos under a microscope) how an Epson printhead works, you will be amazed anyone does half the stuff they do to them. Let the machine handle it, fix the real problem and don't end up wasting money. Some people get lucky, some lie about it or repeat what others have said with no bearing on what they are saying. If you held everyone accountable for their advice, I doubt this would be done to printheads as often as it is- at least the way people are doing it. 

 

Good luck!

 

 

I'm sure you have noticed no reputable company has ever advised to do this, even if it meant the company had to issue out a new free printhead to the customer. They would just issue the new printhead and be done with it. 

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Thank you so much for the detailed explanation! I have been using cheap leftover inks from where I bought my Chinese L1800. So that could be the problem. I should have used better inks especially for a pricier printer 🥲

Do you maybe have a photo of said adapter that you bolt into the head to suck the ink or a link where I can purchase it?

Also, I promised not to manually flush it ever again but it has always been my last desperate attempt to revive the head before I call it quits and it honestly just never works. I have a fleet of dead printers but I think I’ll just charge it to experience and start using only good and fresh inks from now on.

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2 minutes ago, atlix211 said:

Thank you so much for the detailed explanation! I have been using cheap leftover inks from where I bought my Chinese L1800. So that could be the problem. I should have used better inks especially for a pricier printer 🥲

Do you maybe have a photo of said adapter that you bolt into the head to suck the ink or a link where I can purchase it?

Also, I promised not to manually flush it ever again but it has always been my last desperate attempt to revive the head before I call it quits and it honestly just never works. I have a fleet of dead printers but I think I’ll just charge it to experience and start using only good and fresh inks from now on.

Not a problem. 

 

The adapter I talk about is this one, or something like this one: 

 

https://digitalsigntech.net/PHD-LE-Kit.html Just select water based and the right printhead. 

 

Yea, I have been there and done that. I had to rent a 20 foot dumpster to rid of all of my broken machines from my DIY attitude. 

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I was about to give up until you replied to this thread. I’ve already spent so much money and I feel like I need to at least get 1 printer working or all my expenses would be in vain 😂
 

Are these the inks you are using? I’m surprised the price isn’t too far from the generic Chinese brand. I’m definitely switching to this brand 

6DC5B887-ED07-460C-860D-0EAAC4CAEDB6.png

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3 minutes ago, atlix211 said:

I was about to give up until you replied to this thread. I’ve already spent so much money and I feel like I need to at least get 1 printer working or all my expenses would be in vain 😂
 

Are these the inks you are using? I’m surprised the price isn’t too far from the generic Chinese brand. I’m definitely switching to this brand 

6DC5B887-ED07-460C-860D-0EAAC4CAEDB6.png

No worries. That is the CMYK ink I use correct. 

 

Yeah, I know what you mean. I have been DIYing it since 2016 with inkjet printers. The amount I thought I would save, along with the time- It didn't come out as expected. In the long run, I would have saved money buying a good machine upfront. However, that wasn't really possible due to cost. So I struggled through with the cheap ones until they earned enough to buy a better/faster machine. Frontloading debt with any business is rough, especially in a volatile environment so I didn't do that. Even so, I am still in the middle of that process almost 7 years later. 

I see so many people trying to " get in" and undercutting profits with DTF to the point that you can't make back the costs without hundreds of hours of free labor, for one example. I would hate to drop $16,000 ( which I technically don't have) on a machine that would then require  50+ rolls of transfers to be ran through it plus all the free work associated with that before breaking even if you don't break anything- which is unlikely. So most people start cheap and try to build a foundation, so they can easily " get out" unscathed if the load of cinderblocks never arrive so to speak. Unfortunately at that point you run through a ton of parts and machines and time before you really get anywhere, and it's so inconsistent you can't keep regular customers. 

 

Gotta pick one though and hope it works, either way it sucks, haha. 

 

 

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I literally have a mug that says this 😂

I honestly wouldn’t choose P600 if I knew the head is more fragile than other models. I just heard it’s pretty easy to convert bc you can literally just make it chipless, use 80ml carts, remove rollers and attach ink waste tank and voila! But again I have no idea what I’ve been doing. Never thought it would be a 1week project lol.
 

So from your 7 years of experience…

What was the best desktop printer you have ever converted? Or at least the one that ran the longest 😬
 

 

47204CDE-91CA-414E-A262-501148705AE2.jpeg

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42 minutes ago, atlix211 said:

I literally have a mug that says this 😂

I honestly wouldn’t choose P600 if I knew the head is more fragile than other models. I just heard it’s pretty easy to convert bc you can literally just make it chipless, use 80ml carts, remove rollers and attach ink waste tank and voila! But again I have no idea what I’ve been doing. Never thought it would be a 1week project lol.
 

So from your 7 years of experience…

What was the best desktop printer you have ever converted? Or at least the one that ran the longest 😬
 

 

47204CDE-91CA-414E-A262-501148705AE2.jpeg

The P800 was good, even though it runs the same head as the P600 the ink system is far different and works well. 

It was very susceptible to failure from heads trikes though. It runs closer to the film than I'd like. I modified it so it was higher and made adjustments, but in the end it was slower and a pain to keep the output level. 

 

The P5000 has so far been the most reliable and easiest printer to run, repair, and gives the most consistent results. The capping station replacement is 2 screws. That's it. The downfall to this one is that it needs the ink manifold flushed every 2-3 months and dampers changed, which are like $15 each.(X5 every change) BUT, well worth it and all I need to do to keep it running. It has a built in roll holder and cutter, and a built in vacuum system. For this machine there is no conversion needed, just use aftermarket carts and a roll of film instead of paper- That's it to get started. No head strikes, can cut the film for you, It has been a blessing compared to all the rest. 

 

I am also working with a P6000 as one of my last DIY projects. I've decided to move on beyond this once I finish what I have already started. I can't put my family on hold forever, so once the P6000 is working I will be done with anything new( That excludes my current systems that are DIY) in the DIY aspect, at least that is the plan. 

Edited by johnson4
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The P6000 so far has been really easy as well. Easy to work on and I predict it will print 40 11" X 11" prints an hour. My P5000 prediction was accurate before I bought them, verified first hand. So I don't see why this one would be any different. The P6000 does need work done to it to convert it though, unlike the P5000. 

 

 on my P6000 conversion, No worries of the ink chips, simple and easy WIMS system and waste bottle system. Just need a Waste tank resetter to reset the empty waste tank every now and again and it should be good to go in that aspect. For the angle of the film I made a bracket to feed it into the shaker which converts the film from a downward angle to straight out of the machine. Maybe 1 hour into the conversion and it's almost finished. 

 

It's weird, but the more expensive machines are easier to work on, easier to find parts, and have alot of the "perks" you wish you had on the smaller machines built in. 

 

After this one though that'll be it. So I'll stick to these machines or buy a Chinese machine. 

Edited by johnson4
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