Tuesday, 11 May 2010

HP Designjet 130 losing colour halfway

Well, strange problem with the designjet 130, when doing large colour prints, the blue seems to run out halfway, leaving the rest of the image without blue. It's taken a long time, replaced cartridges and it's been so long I don't even know if we've replaced print heads. So, the first thing you think of is to clean the print heads, but no facility comes with the drivers. Finally downloaded the facility (web-based) and was going to try it but thought I'd look into the problem before wasting so much ink.

I don't know why I didn't look before, but I finally did a search and found this article. Found this and the 'experts' recon it might be air in the tubes. So take the back off and find the tubes and have a good look (you'll need a torx screw driver!).

I will update this and tell you what happens!

For test prints it's best to use the gradient facility in Photoshop. I made two prints, one of the spectrum of light (all colours) which came out fine. The other was a gradient from 100% Cyan faded to 0% Cyan (remember to make it CMYK mode!) The first time I printed the Cyan one, it seemed fine up until the very end when it only printed the left side (100% Cyan) and did not print the Light Cyan (presumed to be 50% Cyan). So, ran the "Clean printheads" and ran off a test print. This time the whole sheet printed just the right hand side, leaving little or no light cyan!

It looks like a problem with transporting the ink to the printhead (I think I remember now that we did change the printhead). Found a couple more pages. One saying what to do if there is possibly a bubble:


They suggest examining the printhead, changing it if possible. If not, then a RIDS assembly kit should be replaced. - £45.

An interesting page I found was in analysing the test page - http://h20000.www2.hp.com/bizsupport/TechSupport/Document.jsp?lang=en&cc=us&objectID=c00044783

Turns out to be the printhead. Instead of printing a photoshop document just do the test page. To do this I used the HP designjet system maintanance program and clicked on "Image Quality".

Looked like lines across the cyan blocks only, and everything else was OK. Upon changing the printhead the lines had disappeared. It's interesting that this has happened twice in 2 years. Not had a problem with any other printhead. I think the printer does need cleaning out though.

1 comment:

  1. A great article. Have you considered updated the link in the HP Forums to the new location?