HP Latex 360, approx 1 year old.
We are experiencing regular substrate jams and resulting print head crashes seemingly due to an empty space in the top portion of the heating/fan assembly. Drawing attached.
This seems like a design defect. Has HP developed any add-on parts or something like that to fix this? I must say I'm not terribly satisfied with having to use a paint stirring stick to keep the substrate down every time we start printing.
Fun (and confusing) fact: it happens more frequently when it's raining.
And here is a (not so great) picture of the actual edge that the substrate catches on. File attached.
I should also mention that this happens with all three of our typical substrates:
- 13 oz. PVC banner (thickest)
- vinyl sticker
- fabric heat transfer (thinnest)
I suggest you to try to avoid the following types of situations:
- Do not leave loaded material if it is not used for a long time (from one day to another)
- Turn OFF the "Bypass start job safety"
- Use edge holders
- Put an extra top margin
- Use TUR
- Advance the material until it leaves in front of the healer
I also suggest you to review HP Latex 300 Series Printer User Guide on page 78 for the "Bypass job safety" and its possible configurations.
I hope this information helps
- We print all day, every day, so material doesnt sit.
- Edge holders are always in place.
- We have a top margin set as most of our jobs are print/cut and our cutter requires it.
- TUR isn't used very often as jobs are typically short.
The above things do not seem to impact the likelyhood of the substrate crashing into the curing unit. The only thing that guarantees it won't crash is advancing it so it is just exiting the heater. So we are either wasting material by advancing it or wasting it (and potentially printheads as well) by not advancing and risking a head crash.
"Bypass job start safety" is currently off. When I go to it I read:
"Enabling this option is not recommended. Throughput may be slightly increased, but some substrates could behave unexpectedly in terms of curing and leading-edge crashes." Why is this even an option if it isn't recommended?
Clearly HP knew about the leading edge of the substrate crashing in to the curing unit. I guess I fail to understand why then they decided to leave the design issue unaddressed and cover it up with a semi-functional software bandaid. This, combined with having to stick a paint stirrer in to the front of the curing unit to keep the substrate down is generally souring the experience.
After considering all options it looks like manually advancing the substrate so it is just exiting the curing unit when necessary is the only fix that will not waste material on every single print. Is this HP's position on the subject?
Please correct me if I am wrong. I would love to be wrong.
your printer would have shipped with an accessory called Output Platen Protector.
Have you tried running your short run jobs with this installed?
It may close that gap and allow the media to run more smoothly through the Heat/Cure area.
#1 this ever get solved I ran into the same issue exactly 1 year old on my HP 560?
#1 Hello. I trust that there may be a suitable solution from these answers.
I would use the Platen Protector. This generally helps a lot with any media that causes any issues such as curling and helps smoothen how the media travels.
I would check with media vendor to make sure this media is suitable and has been tested for HP Latex. These issues can happen with paper that is not certified or properly tested for Latex Print but may be more suitable for a plotter or photographic printer involving less or no heat.
Check room conditions. You mention rain and humidity -This is an issue especially with papers and canvases. Check temps and humidity of the room are within limits and do not fluctuate.
Check settings for print. Vacuum can affect this current issue and you want to make sure the media is travelling with no strange movement or being stuck. Heat has more of an influence an can be changed to suit. Paper doesn't need as much heat as adhesive vinyl. Combinations of heat and humidity/moisture in the air will cause cockling or curling.
Media-If media has insufficient weight to have a smooth travel then you would definitely need to have some of it showing out of the curing area and be able to use clip on weights if needed.
Generally as long as your print settings are sound the only remaining issue is how the media is loaded and handled during print.
We are experiencing a very similar issue to the thread starter.
We have a 560, and it is almost 3 years old now. It has been working flawlessly until recently.
We had the SMK3 service half a year ago, but we recently had some curing issues, and a technician disassempled the front of the machine and cleaned everything, all the holes in the curing unit, the fans, all the vacum holes etc etc.
After this we immediately started getting alot of head crashes, on the same media as we have run several 10.000's of square meter of. We have head crashes every time we put a media in, and also when forwarding the media out in the front of the curing unit. The only way we can print now is connecting the media to the roll-up before printing or manually stretching the media.
But it even crashes when it is connected to the roll-up.. it bulges on one side, touches the top of the curing unit where the vinyl gets stuck because of the heat.
Techincian have been trying to find a fault, but are unable. The teory right now is that there is some static electricity making the media stick to the bottom of the curing module, but i don't know, seems unlikely. We have dissasembled everything twice again, and cleaned everything -again. No change.
I have taken two videos, one where i drive the media back and forth without heat, on the 3d run there you can see how the bulges appear.
Also theres a video of printing, where you also see the cause of the crash.
Does anyone have an idea what happens here?
Thanks for the videos. they are very helpful to provide you better feedback.
I can't hear the vacuum very well, however, you should clean the platen and ensure the vacuum is working.
Ensure you are using certified media and the associated profile from the HP Media Solution Locator.
You can try to increase the vacuum and also install the output platen protectors.
The issue seems to be the media lifting from the edge of the platen towards the impinging so it may not be a vacuum issue, it could be that after cleaning the impinging the airflow is causing lift. The technicians should have calibrated the impinging to avoid this.
If the previous steps do not help then you should contact your HP support service.
Hello Sonia, thanks for your answer.
I see now that this is in the Latex-300 forum, but my machine is a 560, hope it is ok.
I can see that the vacuum inside the print area is working properly. I see that by the "bulges" in the media. I've also tried increasing the vacuum, but when the vinyl touches the top of the impinging module, it sticks because of the heat, and becomes stuck - no vacuum can hold against this.
This happens on all medias i have tried. My most used media is Avery MPI2004, and i'm using the certified profile. I have also tried turning down the heat until it doesn't even cure any more, still happens.
I don't think HP has provided output platen protectors for the 500-series, only for the 300 series, correct?
Could you tell me more about how the technician should have calibrated the impinging module after the cleaning? He has not done any calibration, and i don't think he knows about any steps to calibrate. I cannot find this in the service manual either.
Thanks, we are trying to get another technician to visit from another city, since our local technician has basicly given up on fixing this issue.
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