Battle Royal – Printer Vs Me (who won??)

Scott CostelloAll, Blog, Featured Leave a Comment

One of my least favorite parts of putting together my mailers is printing out the envelopes.  The reason is that I have to stand at the ready with a new stack of 7 envelopes (7 is the max I can fit in the Manual Feed Tray at one time) to feed into the printer.  The first 20 envelopes goes quickly as the printer is cool and can work at full capacity, so I have to be quick office_space_printerwith the reload. If I’m not quick enough, the printer will shift to using the paper from draw #1 which means that I’ll have to reprint that one envelope when the process is done.  So fun, because now those envelopes will be out of order.   Sure I can set the printer properties to always use the Manual Feed Tray, but the option is buried in the printer settings and I always seem to forget.

So I’m now 20 envelopes into the ordeal, with 60 to go.  I’ve managed to be late on the refill 2 out of three times so far.  Being late on the refill means that it took me longer then a tenth of a second from when the last envelope cleared the sensor to when I slide in the new envelopes.  Those guide bars grab the f’ing envelopes like you wouldn’t believe!

Sure it only took 120 seconds to print the 20 envelopes, but now the printer is starting to get tired from the initial sprint and slows down.  Before it would suck one envelope in after another, seemingly doing 3 at a time.  Now, it waits for the previous envelope to be kicked out, takes a deep breath and then pulls in the next envelope.  20 envelopes now takes 8 minutes to do.  All while I’m hunched over the printer waiting with a new 7 stack.

I have learned to live with this printer and have accepted the slowdown, but last night the god forsaken thing started jamming! &#@&#*&%!!!!  It has jammed occasionally before, so I know the process of clearing it out…

  1. Say a few swear words when you hear the jam beeps
  2. Open up the front cover and pull out the stuck envelope
  3. Close the front cover
  4. Hear more jam beeps
  5. say a few more swear words
  6. (because when the input feeder jams, the printer grabs and holds onto any envelope yet to be spit out)  reach my hand around to the back and open up the back cover
  7. yank out the stuck envelope being oh so careful not to touch the scalding hot rollers that is used to burn the toner onto the paper.
  8. Close the back cover
  9. wait for the printer to reset and warm back up
  10. resume printing

Well last night the f’ing printer started jamming on  every 4th envelope.  I don’t know why, it just started happening.  Maybe it over exerted itself on the first 20 envelopes, who the F knows?!  I must have been yelling at the printer because my dog went and hid in the bedroom.

To try and stop the jams from happening I took the front panel off and tried to clean the rollers.  I tried to use my finger, a vacuum cleaner (with a handy dandy narrow nozzle extension) and a sponge with little success.  Those rollers are impossible to get at!

15 jams, 30 wasted envelopes (because when it jams, the printer reprints the envelope that jammed and the envelope that got stuck in-process) and 63 minutes later the last of the 80 envelopes was finally printed.

The icing on the cake is that the next batch of 50 envelopes I printed right after, had no jams and no problems.  What the hell is that??

That is how I spent last night



Scott Costello
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