Moving Your Printer

I get enough calls regarding moving a Roland printer that I think a quick write-up is needed. What follows will outline the procedure to use if moving your printer down the road or across town. If you are moving across country you may require a crate and perform a “pump up” and I suggest you get the help of a Roland tech. In short, if you need to put your printer in a vehicle to move to a close by new location – read what follows.

First of all, plan to do the following swiftly and quickly. Your machine needs to be plugged in with the main power on for correct periodic cleaning. The goal is to have very little “off time.” Hopefully the time the machine sits unplugged will be just the time it takes from turn off, pack up, drive to the new location, reassemble, and turned on. We often can extend this overnight, but it is imperative in this situation that the head is locked to the capping station.

I suggest Roland printers be moved separate from the stand and I will repeat this below.

Packing up: The process is straight forward. Start by removing media and the contour blade holder and store safely for reassembly.

TrueVis/Flexfire head machines need to have the tray drained – this is done through the MAINTENANCE menu – [MENU] – SUB MENU – MAINTENANCE – DRAIN TRAY. Follow the prompts. If the tray is not completely empty (or errors out) – get a rag in there and soak out the CL fluid. When this is completed make sure the machine is off – either by doing it through the tray cleaning or holding the subpower button on the front panel until the machine goes to sleep.

On the machines – turn the subpower off on the front panel. Then turn the main power off.

Next remove the waste bottle. Newer TrueVis machines and SolJet models have a bottle cage that needs two 5mm Allen machine bolts removed – allowing for its removal as well as unscrewing the threaded funnel. XR-640 Pro 4 machines have a little more complicated cage removal, so refer to the setup guide and reverse that procedure.

Once the waste bottle (or funnel) is removed – find the rubber plug that was removed on install. Place a paper towel in the bottom of this plug and friction fit it inside the waste bottle thread on the machine. Cap the waste bottle for travel – and if applicable clean the funnel and store for reassembly.

Most machines will correctly cap the head carriage when the machine is shut down from the front panel. If the machine will spend more than a few hours off – make sure the cap tops are mated and locked to the right. This can be a bit tricky and may require a bit of YouTube searching.

All Roland machine have a “head lock bracket.” These are blue metal brackets that should have been mounted on the back or underside of the machine – held in place with a thumbscrew. Like a “Where’s Waldo” – find the bracket and unscrew it from its storage location. There is a threaded hole and an indexing hole on the right side of the print platen that will accept this thumb screw holding the head lock bracket in place. This bracket keeps the head from sliding left during transport. It may take a bit of Tetris rotation to find the right position. THe bracket should mate up with the cut or print carriage and keep it from moving.

Once the blade holder, waste bottle, and head lock bracket procedure is done – the machine is ready to prepare for loading in your vehicle. If the head is locked to the cap tops it is fine to do this within 24 hours, but it is best to do it right away.

I always suggest that these printers be separated from the stand when moving. They are top heavy and hard to lift when they are on the stand. I have seen movers think they can roll them up ramps only to find that the wheels are wider than the ramp. It takes only a few minutes to separate the printer from the stand and it is far safer. If your mover guys insist they can do it on the stand – stand your ground and insist with the following procedure.

If you have a loading dock at both locations then rolling it on to a box truck works, but this is a rare situation.

Taking the printer off the stand is very easy. Eight 5mm allen bolts hold the printer to the stand. The machine is easiest to pick up with 4 people at the four corners. In shop, we often rest them on a 4×8 pallet then table the pallet into a van with either those 4 people or a fork truck with 8′ forks. If you are lifting it with people and do not have a palette, the four people carry to the van and the front two lift the printer onto a foam block and slide the block into the van while the other two push. It may take a person inside the van to lift and guide.

If you have a good fork truck operator – the machine can be lifted from the stand by placing the forks between the stand legs – and supported by helpers on the side. Again, we use 8′ forks to load onto a truck, so unless you have 8′ forks, this may not really be a lot easier.

The machine needs to be rested on styrofoam blocks to keep the rubber plug from bending its attachment point. Two 24″ lengths of 2x4s work as well. Once in the van, use foam blocks to brace the machine from tilting forward and back and strap the printer from sliding forward; strap the machine from sliding back; and place a few straps over the top (but lightly.) My experience is that other drivers will pull in front of your van and force a hard braking. This causes the machine to slide forward – avoid damage by using the strap to keep it from sliding forward.

Do I leave the Ink Cartridges in? If you can leave the cartridges in – leave them in. On many machines this is not practical as the cartridges jut out too much and clipping the cartridge can damage the slot they slide into. Leaving them in keeps the ink from flowing out of the head, but if the head is locked to the cap tops – that can’t happen. Taking the cartridges out often introduces a little air in the line that a medium cleaning will correct. WARNING: I have seen customers clip the cartridge and rip out the ink lines – so don’t take chances if there is not room enough. If you do remove the cartridge – remove them just before loading into the vehicle.

The stand is simply loaded and strapped in the van to keep from shifting.

When the machine gets to its destination, remove the stand from your vehicle and place nearby to lift the printer on. The printer can be pulled out by two people with two waiting by the doors to receive the other end. Once out of the van – rest on the stand. Push the printer toward the back bracket on the stand and insert the eight 5mm allen bolts. Hand tight them and carefully roll inside and in place. Hopefully once on the stand the machine can be rolled into the new location, but if not you may need to find other approaches. Once in place, tighten the back bolts first – then the front bolts. Do the final tightening when in place – as that floor will more likely be level.

What follows is just the reverse of the pre-move procedure: Remove rubber plug and reattach the waste bottle/funnel/cage. Remove the head lock bracket and store on machine. Install the contour cut blade holder. Install the power cord and plug in. Turn on main power and press subpower button on the front panel. Load media and perform a test print (FUNCTION-CLEANING-TEST PRINT.) If the test print shows all nozzles – you are ready to print (and you should print a bit to make sure everything works.) You might need a few MEDIUM CL to bring the nozzles back; this is normal.

Your machine may need a little bit of adjustment: Run your user adjustments for Bi-directional/Media Gap and [feed] Calibration. These may have moved a bit. If you are ready for a Preventive Maintenance – call us to have a tech come by and do that – which will include all the service side adjustments.