Inkjet Refills

Discussion in 'Tips, Tutorials & Tools' started by wyverns4, Oct 7, 2006.

  1. bunuel66

    bunuel66 New Member

  2. Brian_Va

    Brian_Va New Member

    I might be new to card models but I'm not new to life, I've been refilling over 5 years now with excellent success. I use the IMS brand kit . It comes with ink for photos and standard ink. My tricks are very simple, I keep close people with the same printer as I have, I ask them for their old carts. Refill it as soon as it goes empty and it performs like new.

    Old carts: I soak in warm water (standing upright) for about 1-2 days then refill them. Sometimes they get plugged up, repeat soakings then air pressure (about 5 psi) purging will get it back in working order. I have made old carts last up 4 refills and several years each doing it this way. I just pulled one out last month I've been using since 2001.
  3. wunwinglow

    wunwinglow Active Member

    .....anyway. I just finally lost my rag with the Epson C82 I bought to replace a knackered old 740. Whatever ink went through it, it skipped, clogged, leaked, scratched the paper, nasty, nasty, nasty. So today, It went to meet its maker; well, the local recycling plant. All but the two electric motors I found inside, little beauties they are, just perfect for a 1:25 tank, or floating battleship, or big scale PT boat, or....

    And what is connected back to my USP port? The old 740, which is now printing like a dream.

    I used Jettec cartidges for the 740, but the C82 had Epson ones for at least three changes, then Jettecs later on. It started playing up looooong before I switched to the compatibles, so don't go blaming them for its demise!

    Tim P (wunwinglow)
  4. I believe the soaking treatment will improve if you use alcohol instead. I'm curious, though, about your pressure treatment. How do you apply this pressure to the cartridge?

    Cheers --- Larry
  5. 46rob

    46rob Member

    I've been using printers since 1980--predating the IBM PC--My first was a thermal transfer, next a Tandy dot matrix--from there I've gone through a pile of printers, including Canon, Epson and others. My current (and the only one to outlast a computer) is the relatively cheap HP 932. I go through maybe two sets of cartridges per year, which to me, still makes this hobby incredibly inexpensive, compared to some of my others (ever buy parts for a fifty year old MG?). Including all the different papers I buy, plus the cartridges, the cost still comes out to less than one dollar per day for supplies. Since I mainly build my own work--the cost of models is negligible for me....although I have bought some of Kancho's work and that Banshee offered by Sumato--just 'cause Banshees are one sweet jet. Haven't built it yet--but it looks good. I tried refilling both the Epson and Canon--with mixed results...failures outweighed successes, and the colors weren't true. BW was better with a 60% success rate. If I were on a tight budget or a high volume user, I'd probably still try to stretch the life of my cartridges--but at my rate, buying new is my best choice. I have noticed some businesses opening in my area that deal in refilled cartridges...but for some reason, they seldom have HP cartridges, and when they do--they're the wrong size, so I haven't been able to check out their quality.


    My local Walgreens drug store just started advertising that they refill Lexmark and Dell cartrdages. Was anyone tried them yet.


    My local Walgreens drug store just started advertising that they refill Lexmark and Dell cartrdages. Was anyone tried them yet?
  8. Brian_Va

    Brian_Va New Member

    more on my process

    It can be done a few ways, the most accurate is with an airbrush, I have a nice commercial use regulator for it, and the tapered tip fits perfectly. Ramp up the pressure 0-5 psi after fitting the tip in the port. I got the same effect just by blowing into the cart with my mouth over the sink (no comments please). Essentialy pressuring the unit until a droplett of each color forms on the business end of the unit. I have revived numerous old carts this way. My most recent success story, I used Oxyclean premixed in a spray bottle and let it soak in that for an hour. Window cleaner works well too. This was done to a cart I hadn't used in over a year, which is the one I'm printing with today, which was pulled out of service several years ago. Still does photo quality for me.

    One other thing I should share. When a cart goes dry I tape up the cart like they do at the factory and store it for future refills. The point being i haven't bought a cart in about 5 years now.

    I just can't abide paying $40 for a piece of plastic filled with ink. So I came up with my procedures and try new things each refill.

    My next step is going to be recovering ink from discarded units because I can't abide paying for the ink anymore either. I'd rather save the money for my boat.
  9. Rob, have I got a deal for you. About a month ago I screwed up and bought a high-capacity HP color cartridge ($70) for your printer. It's the same case as the one I need but it won't work in my machine. They wouldn't give me a refund, though, because I'd pulled the blue tape off the print head. The cost to you will be an address. Contact me at if you want it.

    I agree. I used to go through a black cartridge about once a week so refilling was the only reasonable way to go. These days I print very little (except for this new hobby of mine) and so I don't mess with refilling. I did try a guy who's near me that refills cartridges though, just cuz I was curious. The HP color cartridge that he refilled for me is going strong and working well. Cost me $15 for him to clean my cartridge and stuff it with ink.

    Cheers --- Larry
  10. pbhawkin

    pbhawkin Member

    Epson R-800

    I have just replaced my old Canon inkjet 3000 with a Epson R-800 on discount from A$699 to $499 with another $100 off from the manufacturer(couldnt justify the A$1200 for the A3 R-1800!)! I can do banner printing with the R-800 so no more joins halfway down the hull or across the decks!!
    Here in Australia at Harvey Norman (big chain electronics dealer) the replacement cartridges are A$22.00 each (it has eight of them!).
    Anyone, had any experience with this printer and refills?
  11. Brian_Va

    Brian_Va New Member

    All I have everdone is HP, but.... In the manual I have there are about 20 or 30 listed Epson model carts that can be refilled. The basic philosophy being if you can access the reservoirs you can refill anything.
  12. mbauer

    mbauer Cardstock Model designer


    I used to buy refill ink from eBay. It worked great (black) in my Hp 1220, HP 970, HP Designjet 450c (2ea). Since the seller has quit selling this brand I'm now testing some DURA-INK 100-year. I bought it bulk from the net and will soon be testing all colors on one of my HP450c.

    If plotting black I have been able to refill 10-times (plotting at 300-dpi). Refilling color cartridges hasn't been real productive. Colors don't match original at all!

    So, when I plot Alpha and Beta models, I use refill, but for production, I'll use HP Factory Sealed only.

    My models are big, 2'x3' sheets of cardstock. I use allot of ink on them (SR71 4' long took 5-cartridges [42-ml ea] to print 8-models)

    MIke Bauer
  13. pbhawkin

    pbhawkin Member

    you stated earlier:

    "If there's a silver lining in all this for HP, they still make the best printers and third party ink support is far better for their stuff than others...mostly because they put the jets in the cartridge rather than in the printer."

    1. I thought that by having print heads in the printer versus in the cartridge made the cartridges cheaper?
    2. How does print heads in the printer make for better third party ink support?

    Have you posted any pictures of your very large models, I would be very interested in seeing some of them?
    Also, why so large and so many? Do you sell them or display them?
  14. That's what I thought, until I bought a printer with the heads in the printer. Compare for yourself.

    When I take a cartridge to be refilled (or a third party seller fills a 'remanufactured' cartridge), they can ensure the head is clean because they have the head in their hand. That's not the case when the head is in the printer. You don't see HP user groups full of messages about clearing vent tubes, cleaning heads, etc., as you do in Canon and Epson groups.

    I claim no particular expertise in these matters beyond my experiences with them so your mileage may vary.

    Cheers --- Larry
  15. tglenchur

    tglenchur Member

    Canon Inkjet Printers Have Replaceable Printheads

    I've had good experiences with Canon inkjet printheads.

    When a printhead went bad, replacement printheads were priced nominally on eBay. Ink tanks cut the full retail price of replacement ink supply cost by 1/2 to 2/3 for a comparable combination ink tank - printhead cartridge unit. With separate color ink tanks one only replaces the color that goes empty compared to replacing all colors for the three-color ink tank - printhead cartridges.

    The local computer store showed me some Epson printers with permanent printheads that are not replaceable. So permanent printhead designs are not economic to service.

    Separate printhead designs are cheap to use for us so long as we don't burn them up by running them dry after the ink is exhausted. But that is pretty much the same story with refilled combination ink tank - printhead cartridges. It's the printhead electronics that are expensive to replace.
  16. Brian_Va

    Brian_Va New Member


    is it possible you received/used non photo ink, or visa versa? I use both kinds.

  17. the continious ink system is available for your model .....ive never looked back since i fitted mine .....its great
  18. BrianBoley

    BrianBoley New Member

    Inkjet Ink by the Pint

    Replying to the question of inkjet refills....

    1) refilling inkjet and toner cartridges is definitely messy the first couple of times, just like baking a cake is messy the first couple of times. But after a couple of times, you learn how to stay clean.

    2) That said, the newer Lexmark, HP, and Canon products are much easier to refill than the old HP products. Epson is a bit of a pain. Brother is pretty easy too.

    3) A typical small black cartridge holds 10 to 15 ml of ink. A large black cartridge may hold 27 ml of ink. There are 470 ml in a pint.

    4) has good quality black pigmented inkjet ink refills for $34.95 a pint. Dye-based color bulk inks are $23.95 per pint. A 4-color, 4 pint set is $99.00.

    5) Thus, there is enough ink in a pint bottle to refill a typical $20 small cartridge over 30 times -- $600 for $34.95. The savings is tremendous.

    6) Most of today's cartridges are simply a sponge in a plastic box. Look for the hole or make the hole, inject the ink. It's that easy.

    7) Bulk toner is also available. Savings are about 4 to 1, but not as wide a range of printers supported. Once again, check
  19. BrianBoley

    BrianBoley New Member

    The difference between photo inks and normal inks are these:

    1) Standard inks have a matte finish. Photo inks have a glossy finish.
    2) Standard inks have more satuation. Photo inks are about 70 percent as dark as the Standard inks.
    3) Current technology means that most standard black inks are pigmented. Pigment consists of tiny particles suspended in the carrier. Pigments generally are more water-resistant and fade slower due to large particle size, but have a chalky appearance.
    Most photo inks and most color inks on the market are dye-based. Dyes are molecule sized particles which have dissolved in the carrier like sugar in water. They give rich tones, but are not water resistant and fade faster than pigments.
    4) Epson offers pigmented inks in their 4-color systems, and dye-based inks in their 6 color machines. Large format - you choose. "UV" inks are pigmented.
  20. BrianBoley

    BrianBoley New Member

    I believe the soaking treatment will improve if you use alcohol instead. I'm curious, though, about your pressure treatment. How do you apply this pressure to the cartridge?

    Almost all inkjet inks in desktop printers in use today are water-based. Using alcohol as a cleaner will not help and often hurts. The best solvent to use for cleaning cartridges is .....warm water. You can add up to 25 percent ammonia for the really tough problems caused by the pigmented black ink in Canons, Lexmarks, and HP cartridges. But try warm (130 F) water first.

    A food dehydrator is a great way to dry out a wet cartridge. Or put it in front of the a/c or heating vent overnight.

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