I got a decent deal on a local pre-owned VS-640.
I already own a VS-300i and an older BN-20, both of which I bought new. I replaced the head on the BN-20 in summer 2019, and it's doing great, so I've done some work on them along with regular maintenance.
The 640 sat for about 6-7 months and was not prepped for storage. The following is the best factual chronological order of things I've done since owning it.
-First night, set it up, powered on, scrolled through menus, setup sheet, all seems in working order. Put in new wiper and felt wiper.
-Next day ordered parts including cap top, dampers and print head. The print head and the cap top are genuine replacements, not sure about the dampers (they were 4 for $100 on eBay).
- I asked the techs from where I ordered the print head what I should do about the old ink in the lines, they said to try to syringe it out and force cleaning fluid through them manually. I was successful on 6 out of 8 getting some fluid through from the back and I was draining it out by un-hooking from the dampers.
-Dampers and head show up last Thursday (1/30) and I install (including updating head rank) and do a head wash with cleaning fluid. This printer was running on an ink setup with white and metallic at the 7/8 slots, so after the head wash I re-programmed it for those to be CM as listed alternatively on the covers. I have the service notes and the service mode instructions. I do a test print without having the new cap top which hasn't arrived yet (cleaned and used the existing cap top), I get 5 out of 8 perfect nozzles on test print.
-Next day (1/31) I realize I have 2 clogged lines at the choke valve, I was able to open those lines and clear out the coagulated ink with paper clip (was pushing fluid through to front), after a powerful clean I got 7 out of 8 nozzles printing OK but missing some spots and the 8th (one of the Cyan) barely printing any on the test. It's late and I do a head soak overnight. I checked the Cyan at the choke valve and it's clean already, put back together.
-Next day (2/1) This is where things start going downhill. I get to the shop and power it on, try a normal clean and test print, finding I have far fewer nozzles firing than the night before (again brand new head). I do a normal clean, try again, less firing, and so on until there is nearly no ink coming through the head. The new cap top was delayed and still hasn't arrived.
-I pull up the dampers, carefully, and try each one on the bottom with a syringe, I'm able to pull a little ink through each. After that I get yellow to print nearly perfect but no other colors.
-I soak the head again until the cap top finally arrives today (2/5). I install and do a normal clean and manual clean and have no positive results. Test print shows 1 Magenta firing at about 15%, that's it. I feel like I've kept the head very wet with soaking so I don't think it's dried up.
I've since bought another set of dampers that I think are authentic, so I have a full set backup if needed.
Should mention that I tried about 3 choke cleanings periodically throughout if I thought I got some air in the lines trying to free the clogged ones, those didn't seem to make much difference, but I did do them. I also did an ink fill after the head wash with new cartridges per the service notes.
Seems like I have ink filled lines and dampers and a new cap top, should I replace the dampers again? Did partially dried ink from the clogged lines get into the head? Is it just air? I'm confused now and everything I do is wasting more ink.
Also on head soaking I can verify that the cap top was full and stayed full of solution at all times I was soaking, and that the cap top was draining when I released the binder clip on the drain line.
Looking for some advice on what to do next, I could really use some advice. Thank you.
Yesterday I didn't mess too much with the 640 but I cleaned and salvaged all the parts (extra dampers, cap tops, print heads, etc). In doing so, I completely dismantled the old print head (original to machine) and the new print head that I messed up and found that the new head had a crack in one of the channels on the manifold. I replaced it with the old head's manifold as I saw some places claiming to restore these for a fee. I know the nozzles are clear so it might be worth a shot. So, I have one extra print head intact currently but it's kind of a Frankenstein.
Anyway, I also noticed that there was some ink on the boards of the newer head, a little on both sides, not sure if this is what was causing only a few of my nozzles to work, but I cleaned the ink off as carefully as I could. So I have this head with good nozzles and all the parts are intact on it but I have no idea if it would ever work again.
I also manually cleaned the lines of the BN-20, removed the cap top and taped the open lines up. I was going to sell it but since I stole it's head I'll just store it awhile until I decide what to do, likely I'll buy a head for it at some point and find a use for it. It is very clean and was working fantastic before I took out its brains.