It is not always easy or obvious to understand how things work and how best to use them. This certainly is the case with using a Canon printer that has been set-up to use as an edible printer.
Customers using edible printer set-ups often ask us “Why the ink in the big black cartridge does not go down”? and linked to that, “How can I clean the big black printhead, because it looks blocked”?
Understanding The Issues.
To answer these there are a couple of basic things to understand about printers. Please bear in mind that all printers, without exception, will print in draft mode(Economy) as default. Meaning, if a printer is just plugged in and the print button pressed, that is draft printing. This is done as a default setting by the printer manufacturers, by design.
When a customer is experiencing poor quality of prints, we always refer them to print settings! What should happen when you send something to print is that you select the paper size, the paper type and select the print quality. An example of setting up to print a photo onto a gloss paper would be:
Photo – Paper Size: A4, Paper Type: Gloss Photo Paper and quality: High
Icing Sheet – Paper Size: A4, Paper Type: Matte paper and Quality: High
Wafer Paper – Paper Size: A4, Paper Type: Matte paper and Quality: Std
(Lower ink Saturation setting for wafer paper would be Paper Type: Std)
And so on. The point here is that if you want the printer to do its job, help it by selecting the correct settings. Play around with the settings to get a better understanding of what each does and watch your printing improve!
Understanding how the Two Black Cartridge work.
Canon supply both Pigment black ink and dye black ink in the printers. The pigment inks work well on standard non coated papers, like 80gsm as many people use for letters. They do not feather or run and produce clear sharp black text. Dye inks, on the other hand, do tend to feather and run on non coated papers, which will produce fuzzy and hard to read text print.
If you leave the printer “without selecting any print settings”, the printer will assume that you want to print in draft mode, or you want to print in letter text mode. The printer will use ink from the large black ink cartridge..
If you change the “Paper Type” or the “Quality” settings, the printer will know or assume that you are printing graphics, photo’s or quality text presentation stuff and will use the small black ink cartridge.
Where’s the link Then?
If you are constantly printing in high quality or on non coated papers, you are hardly using ink from the large black cartridge and this will cause the ink in the head to dry out and block.
The ideal solution is to use the edible printer set-up to print all of your prints. Day to day printing, photo printing and edible printing. This will use all of the inks and will help to keep the heads clear. If you choose not to do this, run a nozzle check on a weekly basis to keep all of the heads clear and printing.