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Honor Student
Posts: 4
Member Since: ‎02-12-2014
Message 1 of 7 (2,291 Views)

Z2100 Matte Black ink major banding - clogged tube?

Hi all,


I've had the Designjet Z2100 for a good few years now and never had any problems with it.  I've only ever used Official HP inks.  Admittedly, though, I only use the printer once every 4-5 weeks, which is much less than what it's designed for :-(


For a while the Matte Blank ink has been playing up, major banding issues.  When I do a print quality test, the matte black alignment test is horrendous.  Only around 30% of the ink is outputted onto the test and it's badly aligned.  The cyan is perfect thought (cyan shares the same printhead as matte black).


I replaced the black ink and printhead. But the problem still continued.  I've also tried dipping the printhead in water (carefully) to remove any clogs.  This improved the print somewhat, but it rapidly goes back downhill on the next print.


Would you say this is an ink tube problem?  Perhaps the black ink has dried up in the tube?


If so, am I right in saying i'd also need an ink purging set?

If I do this myself, i'm looking at around £150 to fix, I guess.   Much much more if I hire someone.


Just wondered what your thoughts might be on this one?


Thanks so much in advance,

kind regards,


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Honor Student
Posts: 4
Member Since: ‎02-12-2014
Message 2 of 7 (2,283 Views)

Re: Z2100 Matte Black ink major banding - clogged tube?

Just a thought, and most likely a crazy one....  but let's say the black in tube is clogged, would priming the tubes be a cheap solution?  For example, it might push out all the cloggy ink?  Or no?

Master's Graduate
Posts: 477
Member Since: ‎05-05-2009
Message 3 of 7 (2,262 Views)

Re: Z2100 Matte Black ink major banding - clogged tube?

I also have a Z2100 and it sits idle a great deal of the time but I haven't had the same problem you're having (yet). 


Check inside where the printheads park and see if there's an accumulation of dried ink in the service station that might be mucking up your printhead(s).


You can buy a set of purging heads.  Cheap source found yesterday that David Zutts posted awhile back.


Then I'd buy another printhead and put that in after purging the tubes. 


There's probably more to this solution so hopefully someone will come along and add to it or correct as needed.  Please post up your results when you get time.  Very helpful.

Honor Student
Posts: 4
Member Since: ‎02-12-2014
Message 4 of 7 (2,257 Views)

Re: Z2100 Matte Black ink major banding - clogged tube?

Hiya D Hook,


Thanks so much for your response.

Last night I took off the right hand cover off the printer to see if I could see anything .  I've cleared off the Spitoon(?) area (the plate that accumulates ink). 

I've given all the inks a good shake and bathes the printhead nozzle area in warm water again.


I thought I'd try something different... (I have no idea what I'm doing so hopefully I didnt damage anything!). 

Whilst the printhead was resting in a little pool of water, I noticed there were 2 vent holes in the top of the printhead. 1 hole connects to the black ink, and 1 to the cyan ink. 

I blew a bit of air into the vent hole to push out a bit of ink in hope that any 'clogs' would flush out.  I realise this was probably stupid as I'll possibly now have air in the top of my printhead, doh.

Anyway, loads of ink came out, but that didn't fix it.


I'm going to pick up some of those purger tubes mentioned, any idea what I do with them, though? Do I need to connect some sort of tube to the purgers and drain it into a bucket?


I'm also going to order a new printhead, and a complete set of inks as it's overdue.

I really hope it doesnt come to a new tube system!


Thanks again!

Master's Graduate
Posts: 477
Member Since: ‎05-05-2009
Message 5 of 7 (2,244 Views)

Re: Z2100 Matte Black ink major banding - clogged tube?

I wish I could be of more help but I'm getting beyond my knowledge base with this model of printer.  Mine hasn't given me any trouble (knock on wood) so I haven't had to tear into it like I have by 5000 series printers.


Hopefully someone else will chime in with instructions on the purging process. 


I do know that you don't want any air in the printheads though so buying a new printhead is probably a good step in the right direction.  (I'm going to also order a set of the setup printheads so I can be ready if something like this ever comes up.)  If it's anything like the 5000 series printers, you would put the setup printheads in the place of regular printheads and then go to the menu where you can select the purging process.  But this is only a guess, based on what I've read here and the workshop manual I have.


I will be interested in the outcome, when you get a chance to update.  Good luck.

Grad Student
Posts: 148
Member Since: ‎05-30-2013
Message 6 of 7 (2,231 Views)

Re: Z2100 Matte Black ink major banding - clogged tube?

The Purge process is accessible through the service menu as D HOOK 1 suggests.

The process is also started when you do an EPROM reset.


You might want to also consider the line sensor as an issue if your printer is not doing a proper printhead alignment. Also you might want to do a Force drop detect, calibrate the drop detector, and also a paper advance calibration.


Newer model HP DJ printers have an optimize process that does the following to improve quality:

1: Clean Printhead

2: Line sensor calibration

3: Advance calibration

4: PH alignment

5: Colour calibration


The whole process can take about 30 minutes.


Good Luck

Honor Student
Posts: 4
Member Since: ‎02-12-2014
Message 7 of 7 (2,218 Views)

Re: Z2100 Matte Black ink major banding - clogged tube?

Hi Roy,


Thanks for the reply! And sorry for my delay!


I vaguely remember doign a line sensor/drop detector test a while back and it not solving it. But i'll take another look.

I've been using the 'extra pass' function to get around the issue, it takes twice as long to print but it seems to make the matt black print a bit better.


So I've got a new black ink on order, a new printhead, and the setup printheads.

I also need a new yellow. Unfortunately, the printer doesn't let you print anything if even 1 of the inks are out, so I can't do any tests until they all arrive.


Thanks for all the tips. I promise I'll report back with some results!!

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