About Our Cartridge Technology
Refillable & ReUsable Cartridges
The manufacturer provides a very high quality cartridge that contains one dose of ink. However, their cartridges have a very complex intellichip that also attempts to provide information regarding the cartridge. Some of this information is benign such as color position and date of manufacture, etc. But, some of the information is critical such as the percentage or amount of ink remaining. The intellichip does not actually measure the ink remaining in the cartridge but attempts to keep track of the amount of droplets formed during printing and the amount of ink ejected during cleaning, etc. It is this latter category of information that is often incorrect according the experience of our customers. For example, many of our customers experience is that when the intellichip reports to the Epson Status Monitor that the cartridge is "empty" the cartridge actually contains about 20% remaining ink. Often this amount is greater. Very seldom is it less than 15%. Also, the intellichip is prone to static failures and often an Epson ink cartridge will simply fail - trapping very expensive ink inside that the customer can not utilize even though they have paid for it.
We offer a wide variety of refillable cartridges that can be used to repair Epson cartridges. For example, if you routinely use 5 sets of 2000ml Epson cartridges a year in an Epson 4900 printer, the remaining ink trapped in "empty" cartridges is about 2.2 liters of very expensive ink. Although Epson claims that their ink has only a six month life from first date of use, the fact is that Epson ink has a very long shelf life even after first day of use. This ink can be retrieved from the Epson carts and filled into our refillable carts. Or if one of the Epson cartridges were to fail, the entire contents can be emptied and filled into our refillable cartridges.
Likewise, if your Epson printer has clogged print heads and you wish to try and attempt to repair it yourself - you can put PiezoFlush into our refillable cartridges and allow it to permeate the clogs and eventually flush it out. Some of our customers have found ingenious applications for their Epson printers. One of the most popular things to do is utilize the printer to make very high standard black & white photographs. Epson uses both black and color inks to print photographs. The result while satisfactory to many is not at the level of a fine darkroom print. Our customers replace the color inks with gradated shades of Piezography carbon monochromatic inks producing the highest standard possible prints. Some of our customers do not require pigment ink and use dye based inks for their applications. Epson does not offer a dye based ink for their PRO printers and our customers are forced to use refillable cartridges with their choice of dye ink.
It is estimated that Americans throw away more than 450 million ink carts a year. Many still contain valuable ink. The OEM designs them so that they cannot be refilled. The consumer is left with the choice of throwing the cart away or having it incinerated by an OEM "recycling" program. We provide an environmentally-friendly alternative product called the Refillable Cartridge System.. These simple to use, transparent polypropylene cartridges can be filled over and over again. For some model printers, the cartridge does not need to have its ink use recording chip reset. For some model printers, we supply a chip resetter. The customer needs only one set of refillable carts for the lifetime of their printer
While the cartridges are designed to last the lifetime of a printer, the small semi-conductor chips can only be reset so many times. Also, being prone to static failure and shorting...you can expect to replace the the ink use recording chip on your cartridges from time to time. We supply these at a very low cost and you can find these as a related item on the info page for each of the cartridge items. Some of our customers prefer to use a new chip each time, rather than to use a chip resetter. They make this choice to insure they have a "new" cartridge each time they refill it. Still some of our customers harvest chips off of the older generation of Epson cartridges to keep as spares. For example, pre 4900, 7900, 9900 Epson chips can be reset and used time and time again. There really is no compelling reason to use a semi-conductor only once when it can be ReUsed. It is the most toxic form of manufacturing in the world, and Epson intention of a one-time-use product goes against many of our customers ecological responsibilities to Earth.
All of the jetting fluids and inks that we supply are available in minimal packaging ranging from 60ml to 5000ml, reducing wasteful packaging materials even further. The bottles are recyclable.
Retrieving ink from broken or malfunctioning OEM cartridges
If you suspect that your Epson cartridges are reading empty when they are still partially full - you can often retrieve the ink via a blunt tip needle/syringe that we sell in our accessories area. Often with a large format cartridge such as the Epson 700ml Ultrachrome carts a minimum of 105-145ml of ink is left behind. It can be easier to disassemble the Epson cartridge and remove the ink bag. Snipping a corner off the bag will allow you to pour it directly into a funnel to fill a refillable cartridge. The bag can then be disposed of responsibly and the plastic shells put into the recycle bin. Unfortunately, Epson does not want you to responsibly recycle their products and the chip they are not providing is designed to be ruined if you try and retrieve it for further use. You have no choice but to save the chip for Eco-waste day in your community or do discard it with a site that accepts Eco-waste such as batteries and electronics.
Resetting the cartridge
Our refillable carts are shipped with resettable chips that already read full. Small format cartridges contain chips that auto reset or can be reset with a chip resetter. Large format cartridges are reset with a chip resetter that is included in full sets or you can purchase one from us if you are not buying full sets or refillable cartridges. The exception to this is that the cartridge chip reader sensors can be turned off only on the Epson 4000, 7600 and 9600 printers. We recommend that! Desktop cartridges are auto-resetting which means that when a cartridge reports as empty it can be removed and reinstalled to reset the chip (you have to refill it with ink at that time!) The R2000, R3000 and Pro 4900 cartridges have built-in chip resetters on each cartridge. These chip resetters use a tiny user-replaceable battery that should last about one year. We sell replacements on the website. Some of our cartridges such as the Epson 3800 & 3880 carts have a chip resetter on each cart, but you are required to insert a spent OEM chip under the cart. We sell spent OEM chips if you did not retain a set of your Epson 3800 or 3880 carts. Some of our carts such as the R3000 and 4900 have built-in chip resetters that do not require a spent OEM chip.
Naturally we provide instructions for use and also videos are available that show how to install the products in both small format and large format. But, you need to know initially that you can install one cartridge at a time in both large format and desktop printers. They will work side-by-side with the OEM cartridges.
For large format printers, one set of cartridges is probably all that you will need. However, if you leave your printer for long periods of time (perhaps you are taking a sabbatical or a long-term vacation or you leave it behind for the winter) you should consider a second set of carts filled with PiezoFlush so that you can flush out all pigment ink from your printer and let it set with the PiezoFlush storage fluid. When you return to your printer you will easily be able to begin printing again with pigment inks avoiding all pigment settling issues and head clogging from sitting with inks!
Desktop printers are more annoying. Though this is not the fault of the refillable cartridge, but rather the nature of the Epson desktop printer. What Epson does is allow the desktop to print about 12ml of the 14ml capacity of a cartridge before it notifies the user that they must replace the cartridge. When the cartridge is replaced with a new Epson cart the printer begins an ink charging cycle to eliminate air and this invariably runs down the contents of the other carts. Refillable cartridges does not change this! They are auto-resetting which means that when the cartridge is removed from the printer and then re-installed, the chip is reset to full. But, the cartridge can not be reset at any time other than when it first reads as empty (when the red light comes on.)
Because of this, you may wish to buy either a chip resetter so that you can choose when to reset a desktop cartridge. However, most users of Epson printers are used to the constant emptying of one cart after another. Life would be perfect if they all ran out at the same time! But, you can buy several sets of the refillable cartridges and replace a position when it empties with a pre-filled cart. Later when it is more convenient you can refill the cartridges that need refilling.
Many of our Piezography customers run multiple sets of refillable carts so they can use the different Piezography ink combinations. And we have many customers that use both ConeColor and Piezography inks in the same printer by using multiple sets of refillable cartridges. (Unfortunately too much ink is wasted to do this with large format printers.)
Epson cartridges are very high quality plastic and chip products manufactured mostly in China and designed specifically for their printers. When they do not perform perfectly and you are forced to throw them away - we offer an alternative way in which to repair them. Unfortunately, you can not simply replace the chip on a malfunctioning Epson cartridge because the chip can not be programmed to actually read the contents of the cartridge. Instead, you must retrieve the ink out of the malfunctioning Epson cartridge and pour it into a refillable cartridge in order to recover your investment. Once you are used to this type of ReUsable inkjet methodology it opens up a world of choices to you in the form of interesting and alternative jetting fluids. We hope that you will try some of our alternative products in your printers. In the USA, your warranty can not be voided by using alternative consumables such as your choice of ink. Refillable cartridges allow you to replace consumables and repair your printer. They may be the best thing since sliced bread!