View Full Version : Printers
Want to buy a printer that will print 11x17 sheet .For B size drawings I want to make.
Question what do I ask or look for. Does not have to be fancy . I have a HP printer, copier, scanner. Just need something to print larger drawings. Thanks
02-02-2008, 08:27 PM
HP had some inkjets that will do large format, but when I was scanning their site a year or so ago I couldn't identify any new models that did. I bought an used HP 9650 that gives me B size drawings. My former employer had HP 5C laser printers that also would print 11 x 17. They were pricey, but again they may show up used at a much more affordable price. IIRC "large format" was the keyword for HP products but I don't know the rest of the market well enough to point to other printers that work.
02-02-2008, 08:46 PM
I've used Kinko's (Fed-EX/Kinko's now?) to do large format laser printing when I was doing model aircraft plans. They could do up to 36" wide by however long you wanted at a reasonable price. I'd just email them the CAD file and they'd have it ready by the time I got there. This was several years ago but I'll bet they still do it. You can buy lotsa prints for what a large format printer costs.
The only problem I had was sometimes they'd get the scale wrong and 12" would be 10" or so on the finished plan. I started printing a scale in the X & Y axes on the plan and check with a ruler before paying for it.
02-02-2008, 09:14 PM
See if your printer does poster printing. I think most of them do now.
It will take a pic and divide it into 4 parts with tabs to glue them together making a pic about 16 x 20 inches. I just took this pic of my driveway the other day.
Large format printers are a very high profit item since they aren't a consumer product. They sell to people with better reasons and deeper pockets than Joe Public has to buy a printer. I'm in the market for one myself. My 8 year old Epson 1270 just fainted and it looks terminal. I haven't started looking yet but the 1270 was one of the best on the market. It will do up to 17 x 36" ( IIRC) and if equipped with Quadtone black and white inks will rival the best photographic prints. It also has archival quality inks made with pigments, not dyes, that are rated to last 100 years on display and 200 years in storage. That's longer than any other existing digitally produced information storage medium available.
02-02-2008, 10:25 PM
Never tried this with a blue print before . This is how it came out.
02-02-2008, 10:34 PM
I have two canon i9100 printers that do 11x17. I have been very pleased and I have printed a lot of pages with them. They were not too pricey and the ink tanks are pretty cheap as well. I do not know what the current model is as these are about 2 years old I think.
02-02-2008, 11:20 PM
I bought a used Canon i9100 for $100 off eBay. Works great and came with a ton of ink cartridges. It'll do 13" wide images up to 44" long on cut to size media and of course you can tile images for larger formats yet. There are tricks where you use small tick marks as trimming aids.
I've made 3 ft x 7ft posters for opera sets on my old Apple color printer. Takes a lot of tape and fitting to assemble but it can be done and the finished product looks good.
Look on eBay under "wide printer" this will give you a range to look at.
HP B9400, Canon Pixma 9000, Epson Stylus Photo 1400 are new models capable of 13" x 19" media and range from $299 to $450. Aint cheap but new never is.
All are Mac compatible and come with the basics to get you started. You will use a lot of consumable. B size (11 x 17) uses 3 time the paper and ink per image. Not so bad when you're doing mechanical drawings but eventually you'll be doing color renderings and photos.
You'll soon learn where to find paper and ink on the cheap.
Shop for paper at a full inventory paper media supply house and buy it by the box. A box of 5 reams will last a long time. Use better grade 24# lithograph paper if you don't need translucence for blueprint machines. Lithograph paper will give you better color and whiter whites because of the clay coating. Cheap copy paper often blurs inklines and makes muted and patchy images.
Ink refills may be as little as $2 per cartridge in eBay and cut-rate suppliers. Refills are OK for most work. Photo quality may require pricey new factory cartridges at $25 to $80 each. Here you'll have to experiment to see what works for you.
02-02-2008, 11:31 PM
Hey Jim, ..... thats a neat trick----and I checked my printer and itll do that and several other tricks that Ill have to check out.
02-03-2008, 12:15 AM
~67-68° in there? Dang Jim, did you take that picture in a walk-in freezer? :D
I think the Windoze printer drivers since Version 3 would allow tiled output. Or maybe it was W-95. I used to do spread sheets with tiled print. I know it's been around for a while. The capability used to be dependent on the drivers supplied with the printer and/or print (art) software but I think just about all printer drivers will tile now. Even my old Wide-Body Epson dot-matrix (EP5500) will do tiled print--It just takes forever.
02-03-2008, 12:54 AM
Might be 68 degrees in here but it's about 30 outside.
And my Canon plinter will print the poster print in about
a minute at fine setting.
02-03-2008, 01:08 AM
I bought a HP 1220 C the day 9-11 occured.
Never forget that as I was the only guy in the store.
but I caught a 100 $ off sale
It does 19 x 13, plus banners, and is still strong..
A beautiful printer.
02-03-2008, 09:08 AM
I found a used HP-deskjet 1000c quite a while ago. It does not make a good color photo but it does make a nice 11x17 print. I'm now almost out of printer ink for it and plan to try those refill places. I'll get another 11x17 when this dies or I cant get ink for it anymore. It has been a good printer. I also have a Graphtec pen plotter that sits idle most of the time. Anymore, drivers are the issue with it. It runs great but I have to keep my old laptop with windows 98 handy to make prints with it.
Honestly, there is a Kinkos about 5 min away that makes large format prints just like what DICKEYBIRD uses. Thats probably the best bet for me. Even if I dig out the plotter, load some paper (thats been sitting since the last time), hook up the laptop, transfer the file, load the pens.....etc. I could have probably saved time and money by just sending them down to Kinkos and picking them up next time Im out.
02-03-2008, 12:56 PM
One thing to watch out for is image size vs paper size. I bought an Epson some years ago that took 17' wide paper but only printed 14' wide. I cursed! I called Epson. I cursed more! But only 14" wide. WHY?????????
I presently like HP. If you look for "plotters" or "wide format" instead of just "printers", you will find their wider products. I bought a 110plus nr a year or so ago for work and it is great.
They have smaller plotters.
Another thought if you are trying to be economical. There are many wide carriage dot matrix printers out there (used). The 24 pin models do a decent job of printing drawings and the ribbons are a lot cheaper than ink jet cartridges. They can even be reinked. I have one of these on my desk at work for printing on three part forms but have used it for drawings in the past. You should be able to get one that does 11" wide easily.