Has anyone else has had similar issues with fabric on the HP 560/570?

rm5690

New Member
Sorry ahead of time for how long this post is. There's also probably plenty of typos but it's Monday and I really don't feel like proof reading this lol ~

Relatively we don't do a lot of fabric printing but the vast majority of our fabric prints are on Endurafab Frontlit FR because a commercial client has specifically spec'd it. We've been doing their fabric prints for about 2 years now.

The fabric is available in multiple roll lengths but since they are all the same $/sq.ft. I usually get the shorter rolls because its less money spent up front. However, last week I had to order one of the longer rolls (61"x135') because it was the only one I could receive in time to meet my deadline and I started having issues that I had seen in the past with a seemingly defective roll (which was also 61x135). I started looking into it and now Im curious to see if anyone else has had similar issues with fabric and the HP 560/570 because Im suspicious it has to do with the printer.

Usually when I load fabric I pay more attention to making sure that the input tension is even across the roll than I do aligning the right side of the media like the printer prompts.

But with these larger rolls it seems like the input tension changes throughout the length of the roll which causes the fabric to periodically warp/cockle/bunch up on the platen and get dirty from rubbing against the printheads.

Regardless of whether or not I have it attached to a take-up roll, I can advance the fabric and watch as the input roll switches from being more taught in the middle of the roll and slack on the sides to being taught on the sides and slack in the middle.

What's strange is that I found that after advancing/rewinding about 30ft. the warping smoothed out enough to print without rubbing on the printhead but was still present enough to cause stripes of uneven tone in areas of solid color.

I'm wondering if this is all either caused or exacerbated by the fact that the 560/570 don't use spindles so there's less weight distribution/support which would cause heavier rolls of fabric to sag just enough on the input roll to cause tension issues like this.

On top of that, there is only one motorized drive wheel on the input and take up rolls and the rubber grip isn't completely stationary on the plastic knob which means that the drive wheel can twist a little bit before actually moving the roll.

Any thoughts, insight, or input?

I would love to be able to buy a dedicated fabric printer but with the current state of things there's no money available for a new printer, not to mention a calendar press as well.
 

P Wagner

Member
Make sure that you are running with the Take-Up tension set to high - this is a setting in the Substrate handling options menu (front panel: settings > substrate handling Options > tension force > high). This will place extra forward tension on the roll to keep it flat in the print zone.

Also, it is recommended to use the Ink Collector and Output Platen Protectors when printing porous fabrics.
 
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