Epson R3000, my canvas experience and a question, ATLEX shoutout
5 months ago
I'm a photo printing newbie, so if any of my information is incorrect, please let me know - i welcome all helpful comments.
My objective in buying the R3000 was to make small canvas prints. Even the 3880 will not make the larger canvas prints that i infrequently need, so i decided the 3000 looked very good for the small canvas prints, and to continue to rely on commercial printers for any larger prints. I just don't need that many large canvas prints to economically justify one of the larger printers.
QUESTION: (i'll post this first and pros and cons later) I'm having no luck cutting a single sheet of canvas from a roll and then trying to feed it through the front fine-art guide. Just can't get the printer to suck it in. I think the problem is that the canvas single sheet (cut off a roll) still has curvature, and the front edge seems to trip over various obstructions on the way in. I have managed to wiggle and slide it and wiggle it so i got all of it inside, but the printer still won't grab it and start printing. I've read some posts about adhering a strip of paper to the leading edge with double back tape on the bottom - is this the way to cook this problem???
I suspect the other solution is to buy canvas 13"x19" single sheets, which won't have the curl.. Any advice on this would be much appreciated.
PROS and CONS:
Con: The printer roller device will only accept 2" cores. The only canvas roll type advertised by Epson for this printer is Exhibition Gloss. It comes with the required 2" core roller size. I've successfully printed with it, and then stretched the canvas prints over the traditional stretcher bars - but didn't like the experience too much. Its a heavy weight canvas, 430 gsm and 23 mils and seemed more difficult to wrap around the stretcher bars, than similar canvas prints i've bought from a commercial printer. When i compared the Exhibition gloss to the commercial printer product i've been buying, the Exhibition is much thicker canvas. The commercial canvas printer doesn't advertise on their website what canvas make they use.
An Atlex rep from their website, graciously answered one of my earlier threads on another forum, and helped clear up some of my newbie confusion. So i went to the Atlex printer supply website when i was searching for a better alternative than the heavyweight Exhibition canvas. I found a PremierArt Generation Canvas Satin roll 13"x20'. Unfortunately, no website selling canvas rolls will tell you what the core size is, which is crucial if you want to use the existing R3000 roll adapters. When my first roll of this canvas arrived, I was delighted to find that the PremierArt Canvas Satin roll uses a 2" core. Better yet, its 350 gsm and 18 mils (.47 mm). After printing it easily on the R3000 - no problems with roll feeding or skewing; I then stretched a print and discovered that it was as easy to work with as the stuff i get from a commercial printer. The Atlex website shows that they are currently out of stock for this canvas, but when i called up, i was reassured that they could get more and ordered 4 rolls. (I have no commercial interest in Atlex, i just hope that more folks will buy this product from them to encourage its continued stocking - great stuff IMHO)
PRO: Initially when i printed off a canvas roll, i was getting almost 6" of waste per print. Thats a lot of waste, duh. Turns out if you choose the source of your media as "Canvas roll (banner)" there's an option to click on "save roll paper" under printer preferences in Windows. This solves the waste problem down to an inch or so.
PRO: After a month, i like the printer a lot. To save on canvas costs, i will often do a 4x6" print on photo paper to assure colors and toning are good, then print the canvas. The small 4x6" prints are just beautifully detailed, and my wife has started to grab them as bookmarks, so everyone's happy
CON: I left the Exhibition canvas roll loaded overnight in the printer. The next day, i started getting headstrikes on the edge of the canvas, this is "wide" platen gap mode. I think roller pressure or something like that was causing curvature of the canvas over a period of time. So i unload the canvas after each day's use - not a problem.
Anything else anyone has to add on the R3000 would be welcome information to me. Thank you!!!
Nex 5n, Pentax K5D, Epson R3000
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