First off, on the control panel, click on ‘Menu’, down to ‘Maintenance’ and then over to ‘Station’.
It's then ‘Carriage Out’ followed by ‘Head Maintenance’ to give you access to the station and the head at the same time.
Press ‘Enter’ and the carriage will move slowly across to the left-hand side of the machine.
The cleaning procedure starts off at the left-hand side of the printer.
I’ll begin by using the cleaning fluid that is part of the UV cleaning kit specific to the Mimaki UV printers. The kit contains the fluid, swabs and the pipette.
Open up the panels and although it may seem quite dark in here, it's important not to use an LED torch for better vision. Any direct light source could fix the ink to the printheads.
Use the angled head of the special swabs, and clean all around the printhead making sure not to touch the printhead itself.
What I tend to do is remove all the excess fluid from the swabs with a lint-free cloth, add a bit more cleaning solution to the swab and then clean around the framework of the head carriage.
Clean away any excess ink around the framework.
When printing to white material, light can flash back from the media and fix any build up of ink around the head making it much more difficult to clean.
Whilst here, use a fresh alcohol wipe and clean the UV lamps and the glass frame removing any ink or debris.
If the lamps become frosted or cloudy due to dirt, it will affect the curing of the ink.
Once the lamps and the framework around them have been thoroughly cleaned, close the doors and move over to the other side of the printer.
I’ve moved over to the station side and I’ll start by cleaning the wiper blade.
Keeping the wiper blade clean is vital. Make sure it has no defects or nicks as it is the only element that comes into contact with the printhead.
After the front wiper blade has been cleaned, move over to the rear wiper blade and ensure that is also checked and cleaned.
Once I’ve cleaned both wiper blades, I’ll move on to the rubber seals on the cap.
These create an airtight seal to the surface of the printhead so it's important to keep them as clean as possible.
This printer has the white ink which can sometimes get a little messier. After removing the majority of it away, I’ll take a dry swab and clean off the remaining white ink.
With this being the winter shutdown and the printer won't be used for a week or so over the break, I’d use the pipette with some cleaning solution and empty it into the cap.
This solution will work its way through all the pipework, through the pump and down to the waste bottle.
It’ll stop any blockages from occurring.
As part of the capping station, there are a number of sponges that should really be cleaned on a daily basis.
Take a lint-free cloth and gently rub it over the sponge to remove excess ink. Cleaning these often will make the sponges last longer.
Once I’ve cleaned the sponges, return to the control panel and press the left arrow across, enterand the carriage will return into position on the right-hand side.
As with all white inks, it's important to give the white ink cartridge a good shake on the last production day and do the same on the first day back in.
I would recommend completing this same full procedure before printing on the first day of work after the shutdown.
Ensure that all the ink slots have cartridges in and that they all have at least 20% of ink in them.
The waste bottle won't fill during the shutdown but give it a quick check before you close to make sure it isn’t over 50% full already.
Once the printhead has moved back to its station, the control screen will have returned to the station maintenance menu.
Click Left arrow out until back to the local page and then press and hold to power off and that's you away for Christmas.
That completes the full cleaning procedure for the winter shutdown for a Mimaki UCJV printer.
Missing any cleaning essentials for your Mimaki UV printer?
Give us a call on 01772 920630 and we’ll make sure your printer is all ready for the winter shutdown.
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At the beginning of May 2022, the Graphic Technology division joined the Entwistle Group, under the new company name of Granthams GT Limited.