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Many of our customers believe that remanufacturing only involves opening a cartridge, filling it with toner, closing it up and returning it to them. Although there are some rechargers who actually do it this way, this can cause many problems with your cartridge and resulting print quality.

Here are the correct basic procedures for remanufacturing most types of toner cartridges.

SPECIAL SECTION:
HOW TONER CARTRIDGES ARE REMANUFACTURED

Understanding the components of a toner cartridge:
There are many other components, but these are the most important.
Toner
Magnetic Roller
Charge assembly, akacorona assembly
Drum
Doctor Blade
Wiper Blade
Recovery blade
Basic Laser Cartridge Remanufacturing Procedure
Pre-testing
Disassembly
Dumping
Cleaning and replacement of components
Sealing
Filling
Reassembly
Post-testing
Outer Housing Cleaning
Packaging
Installation

Components of a toner cartridge:

Toner
There are several types of toner used for recharging, but the most common type is micro-fine particles of carbon and iron. Most printers are either 300 or 600 DPI (Dots Per Inch). The particles of toner for a 600 DPI printer will be smaller than those in the 300 DPI printer toner. Because there are iron particles in the toner, it can be picked up with a magnet. The first component involved in transporting the toner is the magnetic roller. The toner is stored inside a toner hopper in the cartridge. The opening of the hopper is covered with a magnetic roller that picks up the toner to be transported to the drum. To prevent large uneven heaps of toner from being picked up at one time, the opening between the magnetic roller and the toner hopper is measured off with a component known as the "Doctor Blade". With the correct gapping on both sides of the Doctor Blade, just the right amount of toner is allowed to pass through the opening. A gap too narrow will result in too light a print, and a gap too wide will result in either excessive dark printing and/or leakage.
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The Charge Assembly
There are two types of charge assemblies, also referred to as "Corona Assemblies". The newer type uses a charge roller, and the older types use a thin wire, not much thicker than a hair. The charge roller or wire is responsible for placing the charge on the drum. In laser printers, the static charge to the drum pulls the toner from the magnetic roller. The laser beam from the printer then hits the drum with an opposite charge, resulting in the image.
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The Drum
The drum is a cylinder with an organic or synthetic photo conductor coating that carries the image, still in powdered toner form, to the paper. Most drums will rotate 3 times to cover a single letter size page. This means that only 1/3 of the image can be placed on the drum at one time.
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The Wiper Blade
The wiper blade is a polyurethane strip that rides against the length of the drum and covers the waste bin. As the drum rotates with the 1/3 of a page image on it, and places the image on the paper, some of the toner is still left on the drum and must be cleaned off before the next 1/3 of the image can be placed on the drum. If it is not cleaned off, the first 1/3 of the image will be repeated in a ghost-like background of the second 1/3 of the image, and the second 1/3 of the image will also be repeated in a ghost-like background of the third 1/3 of the image. The wiper blade prevents this from happening. However, the edge of the wiper blade must be precision sharp and smooth. The slightest little nick, scratch, or bow will allow unwanted image to pass through and may result in a ghosted repeated image, scratch marks, or lines on the page. As the wiper blade scrapes the toner from the drum, it drops it into the waste bin. Because the toner in the waste bin has been charged, it can no longer be used.
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The Recovery Blade
The opening to the waste bin is lined with the wiper blade on one side and the recovery blade on the other side. The recovery blade is a thin mylar strip that also rests against the length of the drum. When the cartridge is in operation, the wiper blade will be on top and the recovery blade on the bottom. As the drum rotates and places the image on the page, the remaining image from the print first passes over the recovery blade, then is scraped clean by the wiper blade. The toner falls downward toward the recovery blade, which scoops it into the waste bin or "dust bin"). If the recovery blade is rippled, bowed, nicked or scratched, or missing, the toner that is scraped from the drum by the wiper blade will fall onto the paper. The amount of damage to the recovery blade will determine the amount of toner that will drop on to the page. It could be anything from light peppered dots to dark heaps or chunks.
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Basic Laser Cartridge Remanufacturing Procedure

Pre-Testing
Prior to recharging, the cartridge is tested to detemine the quality of the components. If the cartridge is the Corona Wire type, the charge wire should be cleaned before running the test. Several test sheets completely covered with text are run. The first one or two are discarded as "cleaning paper", and the next few are examined for evenness of print on the sheet. If the cartridge has been milked dry, this may not be possible. If a pre-test is possible, various types of marks on the page will determine which components are worn. For instance, anything that occurs 3 times down the page, whether it be fading or black marks, is usually the sign of a worn drum. 6 or more marks is usually the sign of a bad magnetic roller or charge roller. Hazy vertical lines are usually the sign of a dirty charge assembly or one that is shorting out. Straight vertical lines or repeated print are usually a sign of a worn wiper blade.
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Disassembly
The cartridge is broken down into its basic components: Cover; Toner Hopper; Dust Bin; Doctor Blade; Magnetic Roller; Corona Assembly; Drum; and Wiper Blade. Worn components are marked for replacement. Where applicable, copy counters are reset.
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Dumping
Any remaining toner in the hopper and collected toner in the dust bin is dumped out inside a suction chamber that is filtered with a Hepa filter. Both the hopper and dust bin is thoroughly vacuumed with a vacuum cleaner specially equipped with a hepa filter to prevent fine particles of toner from being scattered about the room. If the wiper blade is not removed from the dust bin, care is taken to avoid damaging it when dumping or vacuuming. All parts should are then blown off with an air gun attached to a compressor with at least 30 PSI of air pressure.
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Cleaning/replacement of components

The Wiper Blade and Recovery Blade:
Cleaned with water or peroxide, then wiped completely dry. To prevent dry rotting, the wiper blade may be coated with a protectant - however - this does not work on all types of wiper blades, and may cause damage to some drums. The protectant is wiped clean and the wiper dusted with padding powder. The recovery blade is checked for ripples. If it does not appear perfectly straight, it is replaced. The wiper blade is checked for wear or damage, and replaced if necessary.

The Magnetic Roller
Wiped down with a non-abrasive sponge. If any toner is embedded in the surface of the roller, the entire roller is cleaned with 99% alcohol to keep print uniform. If it becomes necessary to clean the mag roller with alcohol, toner may have to be rubbed into the surface with a sponge during refilling to help the roller carry the toner more evenly, and prevent uneven printing. The roller is replaced if gouges are present.

The Charge Roller
The surface of the charge roller should first be cleaned with water or peroxide and wiped dry. Conductive cream should then be applied to keep the surface plyable without hindering the charge. The metal roller ends should be cleaned with peroxide, then alcohol, and the cradle where the roller ends sit should also be cleaned with alcohol. Replaced if nicks, surface pealing or flaking are present.

The Corona Wire/Corona Assembly and contacts
Cleaned with peroxide, then with 99% alcohol. The wire is then burnished to remove any film left on by the alcohol, or unremoved oxide. The wire is then tested for continuity by placing one end of a multitester on the contact, while running the other end slowly along the entire length of the wire. The meter should give a zero reading without fluctuating during this process. If the meter drops at any point, that area of the corona wire is burnished again. If fluctuation persist, the corona assembly is replaced or the wire is re-strung. Gold plated wire is the preferred method for re-stringing. It provides a better conductor, and is less susceptible to oxidation.

The Drum
Cleaned with water or peroxide. Any embedded toner is removed with 99% alcohol. Depending upon the type of drum being cleaned, scuffs and minor scratches may sometimes be removed.
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Sealing
The seal prevents the toner from seeping from the hopper during transportation. Some cartridges are very tightly constructed and require no seal during transportation, but most do. A adhesive seal is placed between the hopper and the magnetic roller. This seal is then removed by the user prior to installation. After the seal is installed, the hopper is checked for leaks by tapping it on a table at different angles, and slapping it on the sides. If there is any indication of leaking, it is re-sealed until it no longer leaks. After sealing, since there is no way for toner to get to the magnetic roller until the seal is removed.
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Filling
A pre-measured bottle of toner and a funnel is the easiest method of filling. When the desired amount of toner is filled, the hopper cap is immediately replaced, and the edges of the hopper cap are blown off with compressed air in a hepa-filtered suction chamber. The hopper is then checked for leaks as described in the previous section. If the hopper is leak free, the magnetic roller should be clean. Using a gapping tool, doctor blade is gapped evenly on both sides to ensure an even flow of toner to the mag roller in the correct thickness. This is done by loosening the screws on each end of the doctor blade, and moving the blade accordingly. The magnetic roller is primed by placing an even amount across the length of the roller. The edges where the toner overlaps the felt pads on the ends of the mag roller are vacuumed. The mag roller is rotated away from the doctor blade, until the heap of toner is all down under the doctor blade, and the roller is completely covered.
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Reassembly
The cartridge is reassembled in the reverse order. However, before the drum is replaced, it is dusted lightly with padding powder, then placed on its axle over the wiper blade. Once fastened, the drum is rotated over the wiper blade to ensure proper operation of the wiper blade. The padding powder is cleaned off the drum as it is rotated. Once completely reassembled, the drum is rotated to ensure that it is properly seated. If it is not, it will snap into place upon rotation.
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Post Testing
The cartridge is tested to ensure proper operation. The first paper to be run is used as a cleaning paper. The next paper run is an entire page of text. The text is examined for even printing throughout the entire page, and carefully examined under a magnifying glass for broken or distorted letters.The next paper is a solid black page, which is checked for even coverage throughout. Light spots indicate a problem. Next, a solid white sheet is run and examined closely for marks of any kind. Any flaws in the drum, charge roller, or magnetic roller will show up here.
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Outer-Housing Cleaning
If the cartridge passes all of these rigorous tests, all of the residual toner and finger marks on the entire casing are cleaned with 99% alcohol.
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Packaging
The cartridge is packaged in an air-tight, static free, foil bag with black inner lining to prevent light from getting in. Drums are photosensitive and can be damaged with prolonged exposure to light. The bag is placed in a cartridge box with an insert to absorb shock during shipping.
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Installation
After removing the seal and rotating the cartridge to loosen the toner, the corona wire, if your cartridge uses this type of technology, should be cleaned.
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