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Old Jun 25, 2006, 7:34 PM   #1
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Hey There,
Currently using a IP5200 and considering going to "refilling" path. This is my first time and ive got a few questions which i hope can be answered. I am from Australia and it costs ~A$120 for a full replcament, only $20 less then a new printer!!! INSANE I KNOW!

1) Which Brands do you guys reccomend? And which are "crappy" and should be avoided? (links are appreciated)

2) What are the risks involved besides voiding the warranty? Whats all this printhead stuff up i hear about, relating to using non-geniune inks? Ive read all these lockup issues but am very confused and now worried if i should go down the refill path.


3) After ive sucessfully refilled my tanks for the first time, would the logical thing to do is keep the levels up (maybe not below half way)?

4) Will refilling ink into my OEM carts work "forever". Is there a limit on how many times a cart can be filled (if yes, why?) If i keep my ink levels up, does that mean i can print and printer without any problems?

cheers!
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Old Jun 25, 2006, 8:22 PM   #2
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To mysticflre,

Because I am thankly blessed with two unchipped Canons, I have yet to be forced to buy a chipped one--so I will leave the added adventure of over riding the chip to others--but once you get past the nag screens, the chipped Canons can be refilled as easily as a non-chipped one.--and equally economical to boot--translation is huge savings--something like 15x over OEM cartridges.

In terms of suppliers, that is often a funtion of location--with us yanks often having better market access than many others---many good suppliers just don't export---but one forum that is good in that area is the "nifty stuff forums"--just google the name without the quotes. So for local suppliers--you likely need to find someone in Australia more knowlegable.

But the subjects of inks are always hotly debated---but three concenus favorites are MIS, Formulalabs, and a US outfit called hobbicolors. Inks to avoid are those billing themselves as working in any brand printer. But I would never buy or try an ink that has not been reviewed on the nifty stuff forums and basically certified safe by many users. Its also advisable to have at least two sets of cartridges--so you can pop in a refill and refill the other at your leisure--so just pay the extra bucks to get another printer in the process of getting that spare set--and then they have a spare extra printer with a virgin printhead ready to go. But its also advisable to refill before the reserve tank empties--in a chipped or non-chipped Canon.

But going back to the ink question---hobbicolors does do some international shipping and I am pretty sure Australia is on that list--but you likely need to have or know someone who has a paypal account.--in terms of finding hobbicolors--just type hobbicolors on the ebay seach bar--I mention this partly because hobbicolors is
the first vendor I know who claims to have an ink specifically blended for the chipped Canons. But the better advice will be found from someone in Australia--because they will know what suppliers you can access easily.

So good luck--just my take--and others may have better advice.

And no, a OEM cartridge can't be refilled an infinite number of times--dried ink and impurities build up in the sponge and restrict flow--but the nifty stuff forums has a thread on backflushing cartridges that will greatly extend the more normal 6 or so refills.
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Old Jun 25, 2006, 8:52 PM   #3
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Thanks for such an awsome reply.

I dont mind where i get my refill kits. doesnt have to be from aust and dont mind buying internationally.

i did see hobbicolor on ebay, so they seem to be a reputable brand? they're kinda cheap too compred to refill kits found on ebay australa (almost certain they are generic).

Hobbicolors:
http://cgi.ebay.ca/Hobbicolors-5C-MD...QQcmdZViewItem

Signal (generic)?:
http://cgi.ebay.com.au/5-x-100ml-ink...QQcmdZViewItem

This one cost like 5x more then the Hobbicolor and more sales...
Generic?
http://cgi.ebay.com.au/Bulk-50ml-X3-...QQcmdZViewItem

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Old Jun 26, 2006, 3:20 AM   #4
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mysticf1re wrote:
Quote:
1) Which Brands do you guys reccomend? And which are "crappy" and should be avoided? (links are appreciated)
On the prior generation of canons I used products from www.inksupply.com. I would buy from them again but they don't have the latest ink from Image Specalists for the newer pixmas. Image-Specalists and Formulabs (sensient) are two manufacturers most often reccomended.

I'm currently on hobbicolors, but I can't really accuratly report how well it's doing as i've not been using it long enough.

Quote:
2) What are the risks involved besides voiding the warranty? Whats all this printhead stuff up i hear about, relating to using non-geniune inks? Ive read all these lockup issues but am very confused and now worried if i should go down the refill path.
The main risk is gumming up your head. on my ip3000 I used MIS for about 13 tank fulls of each color, about 7 of the big black before I experenced issues, but I bought an ip5200 and ignored that printer for about three weeks, and I got mild banding on the black. Same with my mp760 which was using OEM ink. So assuming it was the ink I bought and I had to shell out $80 for a new head, I saved so much buying aftermarket ink that it would be worth it. This is all rather academic as canon replaced my heads for free, and the offical life of a canon printhead is somewhere around 10 cartridge changes. Reality is typicaly much higher.

A good rule of thumb is so long as you change your cartridges more than twice for each color, you saved enough money that shelling out for another printer is less than buying OEM ink. However these days OEM ink costs only 10% to 20% less than a printer.

The other risk is print quality, and fading. I've not met an aftermarket ink that holds up to UV or oxidation as well as canon OEM. I'm not saying it does not exist, only i've not met it, or seen it tested.


Quote:
3) After ive sucessfully refilled my tanks for the first time, would the logical thing to do is keep the levels up (maybe not below half way)?

4) Will refilling ink into my OEM carts work "forever". Is there a limit on how many times a cart can be filled (if yes, why?) If i keep my ink levels up, does that mean i can print and printer without any problems?
I lack accurate data on this issue. You can't refil one set of tanks forever, they will eventually become gummed up. One can backflush tanks to ungum them if you so desire.See http://www.nifty-stuff.com/forum/ for details on this subject.

From what i've read, the chips will eventually register as empty even if your tanks never become empty. In theory one can continue printing after getting three warnings, but as i've not experenced this personaly I can't honestly say what happens. I'll know soon enough.










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Old Jun 26, 2006, 9:57 AM   #5
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Just to add re: the printer "locking up"... So far I've not seen any additional reports of problems and I can't confirm or deny the issues reported weren't user error or some other extraneous factor.

Ultimately if you take the attitude that if it all goes wrong you can always buy a new printer for a few dollars more and start over with your experience enhanced significantly. I suspect though that all you need to do is ensure you print regularly and ensure that in refilling you make sure you do it before the cartridge becomes close to the low ink level.

As an additional precaution you can always follow my previously posted refill procedure.. ie:
  1. Lift printer lid to get carriage unit to "replace" position[/*]
  2. Turn printer off at plug or pull power cord (without turning off the printer on/off button)[/*]
  3. Carry out your refilling routine (as per your ink suppliers instructions)[/*]
  4. Replace the cartridges after filling[/*]
  5. Check they're all seated correctly[/*]
  6. Close printer lid[/*]
  7. Turn/plug-in the power again[/*]
  8. Carry on as normal[/*]
Ultimately I suspect that approach will avoid any lock up system that may or may not exist so it's your call.

Let us know if you hit any problems or if it all works well...

And in terms of suppliers I use Gemini Colours who are based in Holland for my iP4200 inks and they seem to have what's required for the iP5200 as well. I believe they only sell in 1 litre plus amounts though so not ideal...

Best of luck...


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