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A Quick Fix

7 Dec, 2004 By: Bill Voelker imageSource

A Quick Fix

Have you ever changed a part on a printer and upon reinstallation of the new
component it doesn’t quite fit correctly? Most service technicians have been
faced with this quandary more than once. Instead of the typical knee-jerk
reaction of returning the part, which will undoubtedly cost you time and money,
my recommendation would be to inspect it very carefully to see if it has any
semblance to the original component.

Case in point, the Lexmark Optra Se 3455 printhead, which has given service
techs fits because it only appears to be the incorrect part. The component being
sent to service technicians was correct, but an engineering change has made it
look entirely different from the old part. (Figure 1 and Figure 2) Two minor
problems resulted from this change: a cable was relocated from one side of the
old printhead to the other side on the new part   and the new printhead made
contact with the top panel causing it to bulge slightly.

Resolutions to this problem include:

Relocating the Cable

Pull the cable from one side of the printhead to the other. The problem is
that the cable appears to be too short. In reality, the cable is long enough but
it is bundled into a wire tie, which has to be cut. You must first remove the
main controller board and cage from the left side of the printer. Next, locate
the cable and find the wire tie. Then carefully cut the tie using extra caution
not to cut one of the wires in the cable. Stretch the cable out and route it
under the printhead.

A  Modified Panel

Now when you order the Optra Se 3455 printhead, it comes with a modified top
panel (Figure 3). Including the top panel with the printhead also prompted
Lexmark to change the part number from 99A0829 to 99A1229. Another note of
interest is when you receive this part, be sure to look through the packaging
for the top panel. Some technicians have been receiving the printhead and were
unaware the panel was in the box and ended up tossing it away. Also, if you
currently have a printer with a bulging top panel and you do not have the
trimmed panel, it is very easy to trim the panel as illustrated in figure 3, or
replace the panel with a new one.

Why the change?

Part changes occur for a few reasons. Typically, it is to improve the part
for continued reliability. Other times subcontractors may go out of business or
change their process for building a particular piece of that part. Whatever the
reason, part changes will continue and technicians need to be aware of them. If
you service other printers, which you most likely do, take a good look at any
part that appears different, but may simply be a redesigned version.

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