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Okipage 4W blotches on paper

Posted on 2000-02-27
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Last Modified: 2010-04-12
Can anything be done to clean up the blotches on the Okipage 4W printer? They started just after I replaced the toner cartridge.

There is no particular pattern to them. I have tried the "clean page" button in the configuration program -- to no avail. I suspect the green drum may be at fault  -- I can see toner all over it. Can it be cleaned, or does it require replacement.

Thanks.
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Question by:jacksonmacd
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by:stefarg
ID: 2563359
If you have just replaced the toner cartridge often the glass panel which the paper passes over gets toner on it which marks the paper.  If can get at it on the OKIpage 4W (I have only done this on Brother and HP Laser printers) wipe the glass strip with a cloth or something that won't leave dust, hairs or scratch the glass.
Also try to clean as much of the toner from the rest of the printer as you can but remember DON'T use a cleaning agent and be carefull not damage anything in the printer, take your time.
That should work, it always has for me,
All the Best
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Expert Comment

by:joed
ID: 2563655
If you just replaced the toner cartridge I strongly suspect it is defective. I would return it with a sample of the print as defective. The green drum should be clean. There a scraper blades inside the cartridge that are probably defective. It is not uncommon especially if they are the rebuilt type.
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Author Comment

by:jacksonmacd
ID: 2565524
To Stefarg

The OKIPage replacement cartridge is just that -- toner. The drum is a separate unit that does not get replaced each time. Inside the packaging for the toner is a moistened towelette (alcohol??) that the instructions say to wipe off the LED strip. The instructions do not mention cleaning anything else.

So when I got the new cartridge, I followed the instructions explicitly, and cleaned just the LED strip. The blotches showed up immediately, so I tried the "cleaning page" command -- it didn't work.

Then, in my zeal to clean the whole printer, I used the moistened towelette to clean everything that I could access inside the printer -- including the green drum. Perhaps this constitutes using the "cleaning agent" that you advised me against?

*Then* I read the instructions in the owner's manual, which advised against touching the drum. Ooops... I had treated everything gently, but maybe just touching the drum with the towelette was enough to ruin it??

As I look at the drum now, it is covered with blotches of toner. I know that these things use static charges to hold the toner -- would my cleaning it have changed it enough to throw the static balance out of whack?

Subsequently, I got an estimate for replacing the drum unit -- about $200, so it's worth my time to try something to fix it up.


PS. I don't know the protocol in this area -- I often use the MSAccess area where protocol is just to leave "comments", rather than "answers". Your advice is good, and appreciated, but it didn't answer my specific question whether the green drum can be cleaned. That's why I have chosen the "reject" option.

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Expert Comment

by:joed
ID: 2565610
I have worked on large machines where alcohol was used regular to clean the drum so I don't think that it will hurt to try. Turn the drum slowly in the direction it would be turning if the machine was running. Try a dry cloth or we used to use cotton balls, very lightly to wipe off the toner first. If you use alcohol on the blothes you will spread the toner around and make more work to clean it off. When using the alcohol let it dry. Do not turn a wet section into the inside. Use a soft lint free cloth as scratches will leave black stipes on your printouts. Try to only touch the drum on the edge as oil from your fingers may leave a mark on the drum. Also do not expose the drum to any more light than is absolutely neccessary.
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ga9ul earned 50 total points
ID: 2574549
If you get blotches of toner on a drum. The light sensitive coating has been damaged in these areas and although gentle cleaning of the drum shouldn't harm it any further, invariably the blotches will re-occur. Leaving the drum exposed to light for long periods of time can cause this to happen. Although the coating was applied evenly to the drum when manufactured, over time areas of the coating will become thinner and will react to light faster then other areas, so when the drum is exposed to light for a lengthy period, those areas will fail before the rest. Hence the blotches. You will have to replace the drum. There is a sort of brush device that cleans the drum, but mostly the toner is removed by a flushing lamp and a corona wire which removes the toner electrostatically.The flushing lamp is used to erase any charge (positive or negative to the rest of the charge on the drum, depending wether the printer uses the write white or black method)which prevents re-occurance of previous images or ghosting.This corona wire is not to be confused with the one that is used to transfer the toner from the drum to the paper. Although in your LED printer I think this is done with a transfer roller anyway.
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Author Comment

by:jacksonmacd
ID: 2574562
Excellent explanation. At least now when I have to fork over the $200Cdn or so for a new drum, at least I will know why. The Oki web site rates the drum at about maximum 10000 pages. My guess is that I am near that limit now.
Thanks.
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by:ga9ul
ID: 2574691
Thankyou for your comments, glad to be of assistance.
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