Electronics > Repair

Zebra (UPS) LP 2844 thermal printer problem

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gxti:
I made the mistake of buying a "for parts or not working" thermal printer, gambling that it would be something simple like a power supply issue. Unfortunately the power supply works fine, and the problem is with the printy bits. Ugh.

The issue is that as the label feeds, it seems to stick or stutter and it seems almost as if the label is briefly fusing to the print head then breaking loose. Slower speeds or higher darkness setting exacerbates the problem, as does larger areas of black in the printed document, and there's no setting I can find that results in acceptable print quality without any sticking. Is the print head toast? Crappy media? (these came with the printer, which could be a blessing or a curse) Or perhaps something else entirely? I don't want to spend another $100 on a print head only to find out it still doesn't work right.

george graves:
Did you clean the print head/strip?

gxti:
I swabbed it with isopropyl but there's no change.

george graves:
That's odd.  I have one of these printers, and use it all the time.  Never had an issue with it (other then finding drivers for it  :palm:

Only thing I can think of is when printing large dark areas, the print head is using much more current, and the paper drive motor is getting robbed of some.  Bad power supply?  Bad connection somewhere?

SeanB:
Try using another power supply. If the original one is failing it does that, as the ripple is increasing.

Take the feed roller out ( 2 small clips to release, then rotate the 2 plastic bushes to allow it to lift up out of the slots) and clean it, and check the hollow is clean, and the gear and drive gear does not have junk on them. Careful as the lot will fall apart on removal.

I replaced the power supply on one with a universal laptop power supply that gasve 18V at 3A, and it works well now. Careful cleaning the head, you only touch the ridge at the front, not the gold coloured mylar flex board as that will tear loose.

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