Viper 2 Tutorial - Loading the Inks

Viper 2 Tutorial - Loading the Inks

Dean Armando

A. Gather your 4 White ink cartridges, along with your Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black ink cartridges, and a single Flushing solution cartridge

1. Place them on the bed of the machine

2. The 8 Flushing cartridges would replace the ink cartridges, in the event we wish to flush the ink delivery system out.

B. Raise the ink cartridges cover

Viper 2 Loading Inks1

C. Arrange the cartridges on the bed in the order listed on the sticker on the inside lower portion of the cover

1. The order from left to right is: Flush, White, Black, Yellow, White, White, Cyan, Magenta, White

Viper 2 Loading Inks2


D. On a machine just received, before loading the cartridges, agitate the white ink cartridges by moderately shaking them.

Viper 2 Loading Inks3

E. To load the cartridges:

1. Hold the cartridge horizontal

a) Opening towards the machine

b) The beveled edge down and towards the left

2. Gently push the cartridges in until they lock in place

a) You will hear them “click”, when in properly

b) The release lever will rise when the cartridge is in properly

Note - do NOT open the ink cartridge cover unnecessarily as it allows the cartridges to de-pressurize.

F. In the event you get a “1400” error, that means your pressure pump ran for too long without achieving its operating pressure

1. The “Status” light will be “Red”, and you will have an “Error” message on the screen, stating “SERVICE CALL ERROR 1400.” You do NOT need to call technical support.

2. To Resolve

a) Make sure ALL of the cartridges are installed correctly

b) Make sure the ink cartridge cover is CLOSED

c) Turn the “Power” off. Don’t forget to wait for the machine to “beep”, indicating it has powered off correctly

d) Turn the “Power” back on

e) Repeat several times, if necessary. Once there is a little ink in the lines (not necessarily filled), that should allow the machine to pressurize the ink cartridges properly

G. Make sure the shut off (“pinch”) valve on the waste bottle is all the way open (the wheel is all the way towards the top).

Viper 2 Loading Inks4


H. To load the inks, we will put the machine into a “Power Cleaning”, which will get ink into the ink lines (harness), the dampers, and the print head

1. Make sure the machine is in “Ready” status

Viper 2 Loading Inks13

2. Press the “Menu” button

3. The display will show “Menu”, “Printer Setup” (which will be selected), “Test Print”, and “Printer Status”

4. Use the “Down” arrow to highlight (select) “Maintenance”

5. Press the “Menu” button to select “Maintenance”

 Viper 2 Loading Inks6 Viper 2 Loading Inks7

6. The display will show “Maintenance”, “Black Ink Charge” (which will be selected), “Power Cleaning”, and “Clock Setting”

Viper 2 Loading Inks8

7. Use the “Down” arrow to select “Power Cleaning”

8. Press the “Menu” button to select “Power Cleaning”

9. The display will show “Power Cleaning”,  and “Execute” (which is selected)

10. Press the “Enter” button to select “Execute,” thus beginning the execution of the “Power Cleaning”

 Viper 2 Loading Inks9 Viper 2 Loading Inks10

11. The display will show “Cleaning Please Wait”

Viper 2 Loading Inks11

I. Watch the ink lines,  to see when they become filled with ink, all the way to the print head (all 9 lines  - the 4 colors,  the four whites, and the flushing solution)

J. Now inspect the waste bottle.  Look at the volume of ink in there (if any), and closely look at the color of the ink

1. The ink, in the waste bottle, should be a VERY dark grey, if not black.

2. If the ink is a lighter grey, or a greenish or bluish color, your lines are not primed enough

K. You will need to do from 2 to 6 “Power Cleanings” to get the inks fully loaded

L. Next, finish priming the print head by doing a head cleaning

1. Press and hold the “Menu” button for 3 seconds, once the machine is in a “Ready” status

2. The machine will go into a “Cleaning Please Wait” status, which is a “Head Cleaning.” It is finished when it is back in a “Ready” status.

3. Do one or two of these

4. Then let the machine just sit idle for 5 to 10 minutes (could be up to an hour)

M. Perform a “Nozzle Check”, preferably on a transparency (available at your local office supply stores), so you can see your colors as well as the white inks.

1. This ensures that the print head is fully primed and ready to print

2. Place the transparency, oriented in landscape, so it hangs off the front of the front platen by 1in to 1.25in, and off the right side by about 1in (just make sure it will clear the right side of the opening of the machine as you load it)

Viper 2 Loading Inks12

3. Slowly push the platen into the machine, by hand, until the beginning edge (the one that goes into the machine first) of the transparency is under the gap sensor’s light beam (so the sensor light will hit the transparency )

4. Press and hold the “Bed Up” button until the bed stops rising

5. Once you release the “Bed Up” button, the bed will drop down slightly, and the “Bed Up and Bed Down” light will turn green.

6. MAKE SURE THE LAYER BUTTON IS NOT BLUE. You should not see the blue light lit in the center of the layer button.

7. Now press the “Bed Load / Eject” button

8. The platen will be drawn into the machine

9. When in “Ready” status, press the “Menu” button

10. The display will show “Menu”, “Printer Setup” (which will be selected), “Test Print”, and “Printer Status”

Viper 2 Loading Inks14

11. Use the “Down” arrow to highlight (select) “Test Print”

12. Press the “Menu” button

13. The display will show “Test Print”, “Nozzle Check” (which will be selected), “Status Sheet”, and “Network Status Sheet”

Viper 2 Loading Inks15 Viper 2 Loading Inks16

14. Press the “Menu” button to select “Nozzle Check”

15. The display will show “Nozzle Check”, “Manual” (which will be selected), and “Auto”

16. Press the “Menu” button to select “Manual”

17. The display will show “Manual”, and “Print” (which will be selected)

Viper 2 Loading Inks17 Viper 2 Loading Inks18

18. Press the “Enter” button to select “Print”, and execute the Nozzle Check printout

19. The display will show “Printing”


20. The machine is now printing a test pattern onto the transparency

21. When completed, carefully examine the test pattern. Place the transparency on a black background to make it easier to see the white ink areas. Place the transparency on a white background to make it easier to see the color ink areas. We do not want to see breaks in the lines. 

Viper 2 Loading Inks19 Viper 2 Loading Inks20

Note - A break here or there, as long as there are not many breaks and they are not grouped together, may not be an issue. Especially if the breaks are in the white channels, since there are four of them, it is less likely to affect the print. Breaks in the color inks are of greater concern. Breaks that remain in the exact same places indicate clogging. Always keep the prior nozzle check so you can compare it to the most recent nozzle check.

22. If you do have breaks in the lines, perform steps “L” and “M” again

23. If you keep repeating those two steps (6 to 10 times) and things are getting worse, walk away from the machine for at least an hour, then come back and do a “Nozzle Check” (Step “M”). Make sure you always keep your prior Nozzle Check for comparison. The transparency can be cleaned off with Isopropyl Alcohol and reused until it becomes wrinkled.

EXTREMELY IMPORTANT - Once there is ink in the machine, nozzle checks should be performed every day, whether you are printing or not. It is actually MORE important to do nozzle checks the days you are not using the printer, since you will not be pushing ink through the print head, which is the best thing for a print head.  If you are not running jobs on the printer, it is best practice to run one or two dark shirts (underbased prints) daily to maintain a healthy print head.

Buy ink for your DTG Viper 2 here

Buy parts for your DTG Viper 2 here

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published