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The Right Way to Change the ProJet x60’s Print Heads

After some heavy 3D printing, your ProJet 660Pro or 460Plus will ask you to replace the HP11 print head, this is normal and the HP11 print heads are considered a consumable. On average, you will go through the clear print head after every 1 – 2 full builds (8 inches high and 10-15 inches wide). The rate of which you replace the print head will vary depending on the amount of binder used by the print job but the print head will not exceed its life of 1000ml of binder on the clear head and 500ml of binder on the color heads. So, if you are near the end of the print head’s life, it is best to replace the print head before printing your next job.

When changing the print head most people are usually in a rush trying to send their print job, they usually just pull back the Fast Axis and replace the print heads without following the proper procedure. This can lead to issues with the print heads as well as the electronics like the Pogo card because the printer doesn’t have a chance to disable the power going into the carriage and put it into a standby state. Below I go through the steps to replace the print head the right way and go over some recommended cleaning steps to take while replacing the print heads.

The right way to change the print head is by:

  1. Using the ProJet’s control knob go to the “Print Head” menu and then select the “Change Print Head” menu option (make sure the top cover is closed), this will make sure no power is going through the pogo pins when removing or inserting the print head
  2. Once the “Change Print Head” option has been selected the fast axis will move to the front and the carriage will move to the left side and the Pogo card will be shut off. It will also display the “Change Print Heads Clean Under Carriage” Prompt on the LCD screen.
  3. Using a mirror check the underside of the carriage for buildup and debris and wipe clean with a wet paper towel moving from a left to right motion to avoid getting the alignment sensor window dirty. Also, make sure to avoid wiping the bottom of the print heads.
  4. Then hit Continue and it will display the “Insert New Heads and Press Continue” on the LCD screen
  5. Open the carriage cover by pulling back the two tabs and remove the old print head by pulling on the blue tab or print head upwards.
  6. Wipe down the Pogo pins with a dry paper towel, removing any residue or debris that may be on the pins and only use the alcohol crush swabs if there is any hard or stuck on debris and make sure to dry the pins using a paper towel after using the crush swab to ensure the alcohol doesn’t short the print head or Pogo pins.
  7. After the pins, have been cleaned and dried, insert the new print head making sure to push down on the pin side not the septum to ensure good contact with the pins. Also, make sure to remove the blue tape found on the print head otherwise you will receive an error saying unable to read print hear or the “1003: I2C Read Failed” error displayed on the LCD screen
  8. Repeat steps 5-7 until all needed print heads are replaced and then close the carriage cover
  9. Close the top cover and hit continue, the LCD will display “Reading Head Info” and the printer will check the heads and move to the park position
  10. The LCD will display “Head Status Updated”, hit “Exit” and the printer will go to the online state. If an error does come up double check that the print head is new, the tape is removed and it is making good contact with the Pogo pins.
  11. Run the “Fill Bed and Align” option found in the “Print Heads” menu to make sure the printer is ready to print by purging the heads and running the alignment.

Following these steps will ensure you will not accidentally short your print heads out and receive an error or even worse damage the pogo card. If you do receive an error, it is always best to check the print head to be sure the blue tape has been removed and it is seated correctly. If the error is persistent you can always contact us for support by calling our office or emailing us at 3DPrinting@microsolresources.com and send us the log file and serial number following the steps from our previous blog post.

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3D Printing Gallery

We love to share photos of the 3D models we’ve printed in house at our 3D printing lab in New York City. Head to our 3D Printing Photo Gallery on our Facebook page to check out the latest projects we’ve been working on! Be sure to throw us some likes while you’re there 😉

If you are one of our 3D printing clients and would like to be featured, just let us know and we would be happy to add your models to the mix. If you are not a current customer but are interested in learning more about our 3D printing services, check out our website or email the team at 3Dprinting@microsolresources.com.

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Requesting Support for Your Projet x60 Series 3D Printer

As you use your Projet x60 series 3D printer more and more you may encounter a few errors here and there, this is normal and can commonly occur after long printing sessions. The reason for the errors can vary from not following the maintenance procedure and not cleaning the printer after every print job to various parts wearing out and reaching the end of its life. A lot of the errors are usually cleaning related so it is always best to follow the maintenance procedures and try to resolve the error using the troubleshooting guides found in chapter 7 of the user manual. If you still can’t get passed the error, then it is best to contact us for remote or onsite support.

For us to support you we will need a few key pieces of information to get a good idea of what is going on with your printer and how we can resolve your issues properly:

  • Printer Model
    • Found on the front of the machine near the control knob
Projet x60 Series - Printer Model Number
Location of Projet x60’s Model Number
  • Printer Serial Number
    • Usually the printer’s name or found on the back of the machine near the bottom.
Projet x60 Series - Finding Name
Finding Your Projet x60’s Name
  • Company Name and Contact Information
    • Best method to reach you to provide a quick response time
  • Printer’s Service Log File
    • Found in 3D Print under Tools tab>Service>select View Printer Log and save file as.
Projet x60 Series - Finding Printer's Log File
Finding Your Projet x60’s Log File
Projet x60 Series - Printer Log File
Projet x60 Series Printer Log File Output
  • Detailed Description of Problem/Error and Steps Taken to Resolve the Error
    • Provides us with a good idea of what is going on and possible causes/solutions.
  • Photos of the Build Chamber including the Fast Axis, Service Station, Spittoon and Carriage
    • We can analyze further and see something that may have been missed.
  • Video of the Error as It is Happening (e.g. Motion Errors, Spread Errors, etc.)
    • We can further analyze the issue and see or hear something that may have been missed.

The following files that we may request are not essential but may provide more insight onto what may be causing your errors:

  • Printer’s .INI File
    • Found in 3D Print under Tools tab>Service>select Edit.ini and save file as.
Projet x60 Series - Finding Edit .ini File
Finding Your Projet x60 Series .ini File
Projet x60 Series - Edit .ini File
Projet x60’s Edit.ini File Open
  • Printers Spread.CSV File
    • Found in 3D Print under Tools tab>Service>select Receive File and enter “spread.csv” (without quotes) and save file
Projet x60 Series - Finding Recieve File
Finding Your Projet x60’s Receive File Command
Projet x60 Series - Spread.csv
Projet x60 Series – Entering Spread.CSV File
  • Print Head Report
    • Found in 3D Print under Tools tab>Service >select Print Head Report and take a screenshot
Projet x60 Series - Finding Print Head Report
Finding Your Projet x60’s Print Head Report
Projet x60 Series - Print Head Report
Projet x60 Series Print Head Report
  • Binder/Core Type
    • Name on packaging (e.g., visjet pxl or zb63)
  • Binder/Core Expiration Dates
    • Found on Packaging (near top), consumables only have a 1 year shelf life.
Projet x60 Series - Binder Name/Expiration
Projet x60 Series Binder Cartridge Expiration

You can send the files to our 3DPrinting@microsolresources.com email address and we will be in touch as soon as possible. However, if it is urgent you can call in to our office @ 212-465-8734 and we can assist you on the phone.

After reviewing the received files, we will recommend steps to resolve the problem remotely, or narrow down what the issues are and to determine which replacement parts may be needed for an onsite visit. These files should be sent with every new case being brought to our attention so we can provide you with the fastest and easiest support possible. Remember the more information we can get the more likely we will be able to resolve your issue during one onsite visit.

Thanks and Happy 3D Printing!

EDIT: Originally posted on 11/02/2016

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