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  1. #1
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    Exclamation Ricoh Aficio AP3800C maintenance issue

    My printer has been making a lot more clanking noise than usual during the warm-up calibration.
    Printing in B&W, the paper comes out filled with toner lines.
    Printing in color, the three primaries come out with huge misalignment (1cm) from each other. This happened very suddendly - it was printing fine but after turning it off and on again the next day, it started printing horribly.
    I can't find any auto-calibration options in the drivers or the printer's menu.
    Before paying for maintenance i'd be very interested to learn if there's something i can do myself to try and fix this.
    Can you help?


  2. #2
    Geek Extraordinaire 2,500+ Posts KenB's Avatar
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    Re: Ricoh Aficio AP3800C maintenance issue

    I wouldn't put much $$ into this old beast if I were you.

    It's WELL past its prime, to say the least.

    From the Ricoh dealer site:

    (Click on image to enlarge)

    3800.jpg

    So, just when is this "old enough to know better" thing supposed to kick in?

  3. #3
    Service Manager 2,500+ Posts
    Ricoh Aficio AP3800C maintenance issue

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    Re: Ricoh Aficio AP3800C maintenance issue

    Quote Originally Posted by lifemare View Post
    My printer has been making a lot more clanking noise than usual during the warm-up calibration.
    Printing in B&W, the paper comes out filled with toner lines.
    Printing in color, the three primaries come out with huge misalignment (1cm) from each other. This happened very suddendly - it was printing fine but after turning it off and on again the next day, it started printing horribly.
    I can't find any auto-calibration options in the drivers or the printer's menu.
    Before paying for maintenance i'd be very interested to learn if there's something i can do myself to try and fix this.
    Can you help?
    You won't be able to solve this with a few lines of instructions. You need parts AND service. Period. If you're unwilling to pay someone, you're out of luck.
    Although, as previously advised by KenB, now would be just the right time to consider retiring it.


  4. #4
    AutoMajical Resolutionist 2,500+ Posts
    Ricoh Aficio AP3800C maintenance issue

    Tonerbomb's Avatar
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    Re: Ricoh Aficio AP3800C maintenance issue

    These things were known for these symtoms. Time for a new printer (Trumpet playing Taps).............................................

    Mystic Crystal Revelations

  5. #5
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    Re: Ricoh Aficio AP3800C maintenance issue

    Thanks for the advice and quick replies Kenb, Sandman and Tonerbomb.
    I'm aware this printer model would fit better in a museum than an office, but i've already bought it used... Replacing parts is cheaper than with more recent models and since this is a very tiny business: one - it sees very little action; two - there's no budget for a new one
    Let's see if the maintenance guy has a degree in paleontology and manages to squeeze a couple more years out of this fossil.
    (i have faith in this little droid)


  6. #6
    Service Manager 2,500+ Posts TonerMunkeh's Avatar
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    Re: Ricoh Aficio AP3800C maintenance issue

    It sounds as if it's going to need a damn good strip down and clean. Possibly a full set of PCU's and developers, maybe a transfer belt and cleaning unit. Weigh that up against the cost of a new one:

    Taken from ebay US:

    Black PCU - $35.99 - ap3800 photoconductor | eBay
    Colour PCU's - $188 - ap3800 photoconductor | eBay
    Black Developer - $79.99 - Ricoh AP3800 Type 7000D Developer Unit Black | eBay
    Colour Developers - $159.99 - 400595 Genuine Ricoh AP3800 Type 3800B Color Developer Unit | eBay
    Fuser - $157.00 - ap3800 transfer | eBay
    Oil Supply Units - $26.50 - Ricoh 400549 G774 17 Printer Maintenance Kit Type 3800 G Fuser Oil AP3800C DSC38 | eBay

    Okay, that's approximately $650, not counting labour and whatever markup the engineer puts on.

    Weigh that against:

    New Ricoh Aficio SP C811DN Workgroup Laser Color Office Printer SPC811 C811 DN 026649028199 | eBay

    Nuclear weapon proof colour printer!

    Computers are serious tools, Michael!

  7. #7
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    Re: Ricoh Aficio AP3800C maintenance issue

    Quote Originally Posted by lifemare View Post
    Thanks for the advice and quick replies Kenb, Sandman and Tonerbomb.
    I'm aware this printer model would fit better in a museum than an office, but i've already bought it used... Replacing parts is cheaper than with more recent models and since this is a very tiny business: one - it sees very little action; two - there's no budget for a new one
    Let's see if the maintenance guy has a degree in paleontology and manages to squeeze a couple more years out of this fossil.
    (i have faith in this little droid)

    i think if you are use only b/w you can get a new drum unit/pcu and at least have good b/w copies..till you get $$$$ or decide to upgrade............
    where are you located


  8. #8
    Service Manager 10,000+ Posts
    Ricoh Aficio AP3800C maintenance issue

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    Lightbulb Re: Ricoh Aficio AP3800C maintenance issue

    This Parts & Service Manual can now be purchased for $12.77 and downloaded immediately after payment from:


    http://www.justmanuals.com


    Paul@justmanuals.com



  9. #9
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    Re: Ricoh Aficio AP3800C maintenance issue

    @TonerMunkeh: Thank you very much for taking the time to search all that for me! I have a few spare parts myself that may be of use and, if it comes to spending such an amount, i'd definitely consider buying a new one. Unfortunately in the near future, if it comes to that, i'll have to retire the printer and work without it, since i really can't spare even half of that amount. (yes, yes, very very tiny business indeed )

    @fshead: Yeah, i'm considering that fshead, i rarely use color printing, so i could always have those done at a nearby copy center. In any case, i definitely won't be able to afford a full repair.
    I'm from Portugal. You might've heard about my little home country in the news recently, since it's spearheading the European recession alongside Greece, Ireland and Spain. That might help you understand how a business can call itself a business when it doesn't even have 300 measly bucks sitting around for printer maintenance. Also, the company was just launched a few months ago, so it still is and will be for some time in the "clawing-out-of-debt" phase...

    @TonerMunkeh: Sorry, should've mentioned my location on the first post, since US prices are a tad irrelevant and ordering from ebay will cost me a lot on import taxes. Still, point well made regarding full service vs new printer!

    I haven't been able to reach my maintenance guy, so i started reading up on the manual, fiddling around and testing the machine. For curiosity sake, while i'm waiting for maintenance, if you'd care to lend your opinion on the issue:
    - Error SC388 (Development gamma error C) popped up for the first time ever, but didn't reappear after a reboot.
    - I've also noticed the image printing area margins aren't right, but trying to adjust paper registration isn't working. Clicking on test print or adjustment exits the menu!?!?!
    - Auto color calibration fails after half a minute.
    - Manual color calibration produces no visible changes in test prints.

    Here's a test page of color calibration i've scanned, for all the fans of grubby printing out there:
    img154w.jpg


  10. #10
    Just a fellow wanderer 2,500+ Posts Iowatech's Avatar
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    Re: Ricoh Aficio AP3800C maintenance issue

    You might want to look in your manual for the location of the ID sensors and carefully clean them. That usually helps if the normal color alignment adjustments don't work. Also take a look at what those sensors are pointed at, if it is contaminated by toner or paper dust it can throw off the readings so that might need to be cleaned carefully as well.
    I need to say again to be very careful while cleaning in this area. There are a number of components in that area that are very durable unless exposed to careless handling. It could be the difference between a printer that prints badly but can be fixed and a printer that prints nothing and might as well be a shelf. So be careful.
    The repeating pattern in the example picture shows that the black drum unit is worn out and needs to be replaced.
    For the error code that appeared and then went away, if the error code doesn't appear again for a while or if you can simply turn the machine off and on and the error resets with no additional errors, that could indicate irregularities from your local power utility. A line conditioner would be the thing to have then, although a surge suppressor with a suitable amp rating would be better than nothing I suppose.


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