Is there such a thing as a "low temperature" laser printer? (to prevent ink ghosting)

Posted on 2007-10-02
Last Modified: 2013-12-15
Hi there,

I've recently had a bunch of letter heads printed using a digital printing process.  Upon using them in my laser printer, the ink is being melted onto the drum / roller and the transferred as a ghosted image down the page.  I'm reliably informed that this is the problem with using lasr printers with such materials.

My question then is this; is there such a thing as a laser printer that operates at temperatures low enough to prevent such an ink re-melting / transfer issue?  And if so, who makes this wonderful machine?

Thanks in advance.

Question by:ml1n4
    LVL 32

    Assisted Solution

    Heat is required to set the toner (occurs in fuser assembly) and is inherent in laser printers.

    The only good option I know of is a high quality inkjet printer.
    LVL 54

    Accepted Solution

    The comment above is correct on what the fuser does.  There may be no way to prevent this with the letterhead you have.  A different media (i.e. paper) or letterhead printing process could prevent this from being an issue in the future.

    However you might also look at the printer to see if it has a setting for letterhead or transparency media.  This is usually found in the Properties area of the Printer dialog box (the one that appears when you choose to Print).  The setting can be on different tabs but I believe it is often found under Paper.  Not all printers will have the choices (letterhead, transparency, etc) but those that do might work with this letterhead.  Let me know if you need some suggestions of printers that say they support it.

    The temperatures will still be hot and the difference is probably minimal.  If, like me, you prefer to use a laser printer, you might want to make sure that the media and any preprinting done will support a laser printer.  Hopefully the setting change will be enough to make the difference here. :)

    I hope this helps.  Let me know if you have a question.

    LVL 37

    Assisted Solution

    b0lsc0tt's suggestion may work.

    Another possibility is to avoid lasers altogether, and use a "solid ink" printer. These are made by Xerox only, and will print on just about anything. They use a wax-like resin to produce the image. The current model is the Phaser 8560, which typically runs at 15 ppm (spec is 30 ppm). They produce brilliant output independent of paper type. The prints are not quite as durable as those of lasers, but are more than adequate for most uses. With almost no waste, they are also far environmentally friendly than lasers.

    One word of warning: most people find it difficult to go back to lasers once they are used to solid ink output quality.
    LVL 37

    Expert Comment

    BTW, with solid ink printers the paper never gets any hotter than about 80 C, compared to around 150 C for a laser. The ink melts at around 90 C.
    LVL 23

    Assisted Solution

    If you ordered letterheads, and they aren't fit for purpose, then take them back and have them reprinted using a different technology.  

    this is not something you should work around, it is your suppliers fault.

    Author Comment

    I would agree about returning the paper to the supplier as it is not fit for purpose, however, I had them done as a favour so I think I'll have to live with it... :-)
    Thanks for the help guys.
    p.s.  I would love a solid ink printer - they are clearly the future for environmentally conscious businesses!
    LVL 54

    Expert Comment

    Your welcome!  I'm glad I could help.  Thanks for the fun question, the grade and the points.


    Expert Comment

    One thing you might try is to set up a template in Word for your letterhead and print the letter and the letterhead in one pass.

    Of course if you wanted color letterhead and you only have a black laser, you are out of luck.


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