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Can't replace cartridges because carriage is stuck

I have an Officejet D135 which is about 5 years old, but very serviceable. Lately it has developed a problem with replacing cartridges; what is supposed to happen is that you open the machine by lifting up the front, and the carriage that holds the cartridges and printheads is supposed to slew to the center and let you replace cartridges or heads. Unfortunately, it no longer does this, so you can't get the empty cartridges out to replace them with resorting to heroic measures.

I called HP tech support, and they instructed me to unplug it, wait a while, plug it back in, and maybe the carriage would come out. Sometimes this works, but most of the time it does not.  Their advice was to buy a new All in One (from HP, of course). It seems that in their view, this machine is so obsolete that even the one that superceded it is obsolete! Sorry HP; I like what I have and want to keep it running!

I took a careful look at the mechanism, and there is this little gizz on the right side, just below the shiny rod that the carriage slews on, which blocks the carriage.  I discovered that I could power up, open the access door, manually push this thing back in, and the carriage would dutifully slew out and let me replace cartridges. What I would like to find out, is exactly what this mechanism is, how it is put together,  and how to make it work like it originally did.  This may be one of these "tear it apart and clean out the crud" operations, or perhaps a "replace C164 on the fubar board", or something else. Does anyone out there understand this machine well enough to help me out? Does anyone know where one can get a technical service manual for this machine (I'm an EE and am not afraid of this kind of thing).?

Thanks

Justin Harlow
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harlow
Asked:
harlow
1 Solution
 
CaseybeaCommented:
My first answer--  scrap it, printers are cheap.   But-  you want to keep it alive, so......

The easiest thing I can think of for this is to rip it completely apart and just figure out what that thing is, how it works, etc.     But- that would destroy your printer most likely.

So- my final solution is kind of elegant--  rip apart ANOTHER D135.   The good thing about obsolete equipment is--  you can get like equipment incredibly cheap.  

I just checked eBay, and there's a few of these printers available - for as low as $9.99.     My suggestion--  buy a used one from eBay-- and use it to surgically disect and figure out what makes your "good" one tick.

This has the HUGE added benefit of giving you a complete set of spare parts to keep this thing running for quite some time.......

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michkoCommented:
Caseybea hit it right on the head - pick up a "parts printer" from eBay.

I checked through HP's site.  They don't even list a service manual for this one.  Nor does their parts listing have any diagram to go along with it.  From their parts listing, it doesn't appear the piece you're looking for is available as a separate part.  It wouldn't surprise me if HP considered it as part of the main printer casing.  If you're interested, here is the parts listing for the D135 from HP PartSurfer:
http://partsurfer.hp.com/cgi-bin/spi/main?sel_flg=partlist&model=OFFICEJET_D_SERIES&HP_model=C8374A&modname=OfficeJet+D135xi+All-in-One+%28C8374A%29&template=main&plist_sval=ALL&plist_styp=flag&dealer_id=&callingsite=&strsrch=&keysel=%3F&catsel=%3F

As noted - Not even a diagram to visually match part to name/number.  Pretty poor on HP's part, agreed.  Unfortunately, printers have now become a disposable commodity.  VCRs did the same thing (I know, I used to fix VCRs for a living :), now one breaks just throw it away and buy a new one).  

If you really want to keep it running (and I agree with you - don't replace something that works the way you want it) - pick up a spare or two and have fun disassembling it.

Note - I just wanted to second Caseybea's info - so if you accept an answer give points to him.

michko
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willcompCommented:
Sounds like you found the carriage release. HP used to provide instructions on how to release the carriage and move it manually with power off. The release lets print heads clear cleaning station and move unimpeded.

Some light reading that may help:
http://www.fixyourownprinter.com/forums/inkjet/22798
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