JP2009045916A - Fluid ejecting apparatus, and fluid filling method in same - Google Patents

Fluid ejecting apparatus, and fluid filling method in same Download PDF

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Publication number
JP2009045916A
JP2009045916A JP2007318034A JP2007318034A JP2009045916A JP 2009045916 A JP2009045916 A JP 2009045916A JP 2007318034 A JP2007318034 A JP 2007318034A JP 2007318034 A JP2007318034 A JP 2007318034A JP 2009045916 A JP2009045916 A JP 2009045916A
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JP
Japan
Prior art keywords
fluid
ink
flow path
valve mechanism
ejecting apparatus
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Withdrawn
Application number
JP2007318034A
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Japanese (ja)
Inventor
Takero Seino
Taro Takekoshi
健朗 情野
太郎 竹腰
Original Assignee
Seiko Epson Corp
セイコーエプソン株式会社
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Filing date
Publication date
Priority to JP2007189068 priority Critical
Application filed by Seiko Epson Corp, セイコーエプソン株式会社 filed Critical Seiko Epson Corp
Priority to JP2007318034A priority patent/JP2009045916A/en
Priority claimed from CN 200810133565 external-priority patent/CN101348041B/en
Priority claimed from US12/176,771 external-priority patent/US8128210B2/en
Publication of JP2009045916A publication Critical patent/JP2009045916A/en
Application status is Withdrawn legal-status Critical

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Abstract

<P>PROBLEM TO BE SOLVED: To suppress intrusion of foreign material into a fluid containing part before starting to use while suppressing use of unnecessary material after starting to use in a fluid ejecting apparatus. <P>SOLUTION: The fluid ejecting apparatus comprises a fluid containing part containing a fluid, a fluid ejecting part ejecting the fluid, a flow path formed part formed with a fluid flow path from the fluid containing part to the fluid ejecting part, and a valve structure capable of opening and closing the fluid flow path. The fluid ejecting apparatus is under the initial condition that the fluid is filled in a portion of the fluid flow path at least from a position of the fluid containing part to a position of the valve mechanism, and the valve mechanism closes the fluid flow path before initial use of the fluid ejecting apparatus after the fluid is contained in the fluid containing part. <P>COPYRIGHT: (C)2009,JPO&INPIT

Description

  The present invention relates to a fluid ejecting apparatus and a fluid filling method in the fluid ejecting apparatus.

  In an ink jet printer, a mode is known in which a distribution ink or a storage liquid is filled in a recording head before shipment (for example, Patent Documents 1 and 2).

  On the other hand, an ink jet printer (a so-called off-carriage type printer) is known in which an ink container containing ink is disposed not at a carriage on which a recording head is mounted but at a different position (for example, Patent Document 3).

JP 2002-283590 A JP 2004-114647 A JP-A-2005-47258

  When an ink jet printer is filled with a distribution ink or the like and shipped, a material (distribution ink or the like) that is unnecessary after the start of product use is used. In particular, an off-carriage printer uses a large amount of physical distribution ink or the like because the volume of an ink flow path for supplying ink from an ink container to a recording head is relatively large. In a form in which the printer is shipped in a state where the ink container is not mounted, a member for sealing the supply needle, which is the mounting destination of the ink container, is separately required in order to maintain the state of filling the distribution ink.

  Further, in the form of shipping the printer with the ink container mounted, if the ink for distribution is filled in the recording head before shipping, the ink for distribution enters the ink container and the quality of the ink is lowered. There was a fear. Even when the product is shipped without being filled with physical distribution ink or the like, the air in the ink flow path may enter the ink container and the quality of the ink (for example, the degree of deaeration) may be reduced.

  Such a problem is not limited to an ink jet printer having an ink container that contains liquid ink and a recording head that discharges liquid ink, but includes a fluid containing part that contains fluid and a fluid ejecting part that ejects the fluid. This is a problem common to the fluid ejecting apparatuses.

  The present invention has been made in order to solve the above-described problems, and an object of the present invention is to provide a technique capable of suppressing entry of a foreign substance into a fluid container before starting use in a fluid ejecting apparatus. And

  In order to solve at least a part of the above problems, the present invention can be realized as the following forms or application examples.

Application Example 1 A fluid ejecting apparatus,
A fluid container for containing fluid;
A fluid discharge section for discharging the fluid;
A flow path forming part that forms a fluid flow path from the fluid containing part to the fluid discharge part;
A valve mechanism capable of opening and closing the fluid flow path,
Before using the first fluid ejecting apparatus after the fluid is accommodated in the fluid accommodating portion, at least a portion of the fluid flow path from the position of the fluid accommodating portion to the position of the valve mechanism is filled with the fluid. And a fluid ejection device in an initial state in which the valve mechanism closes the fluid flow path.

  This apparatus is in an initial state before use of the first fluid ejecting apparatus after the fluid is accommodated in the fluid accommodating portion. That is, at least a portion of the fluid flow path from the position of the fluid accommodating portion to the position of the valve mechanism is filled with the fluid, and the valve mechanism closes the fluid flow path. Therefore, the fluid filled in the part from the position of the fluid accommodating part of the fluid channel to the position of the valve mechanism is maintained in the part by the valve mechanism closing the fluid channel. For this reason, in this apparatus, it is possible to suppress the intrusion of foreign matter into the fluid container before the start of use.

[Application Example 2] The fluid ejection device according to Application Example 1,
In the initial state, the fluid ejecting apparatus in which the fluid ejection unit is filled with a pre-use liquid that does not contain a solid component.

  In this fluid ejecting apparatus, in the initial state, the fluid discharge part is filled with a pre-use liquid that does not contain a solid component, so that the internal pressure of the fluid discharge part rises even when exposed to a high temperature environment before the start of use. Can be suppressed, and fluid leakage can be suppressed.

Application Example 3 The fluid ejection device according to Application Example 1 or Application Example 2,
A fluid ejecting apparatus, wherein the pre-use liquid is filled in a portion of the fluid flow path other than the portion filled with the fluid in the initial state.

  In this fluid ejecting apparatus, in the initial state, since the pre-use liquid is filled in a portion other than the portion filled with the fluid in the fluid flow path, even when exposed to a high temperature environment before the start of use, An increase in internal pressure of the fluid flow path can be suppressed, and fluid leakage can be suppressed.

Application Example 4 The fluid ejection device according to Application Example 2 or Application Example 3,
The fluid ejecting apparatus, wherein the pre-use liquid is a liquid that does not include a color material as the solid component.

Application Example 5 The fluid ejecting apparatus according to any one of Application Examples 1 to 4, further comprising:
A suction means capable of sucking the inside of the fluid flow path on the fluid discharge part side from the position of the valve mechanism;
The initial state of the fluid ejection device is:
(A) closing the fluid flow path by the valve mechanism;
(B) generating a negative pressure in the fluid flow path on the fluid discharge part side from the position of the valve mechanism by suction by the suction means;
(C) releasing the fluid channel closed by the valve mechanism;
(D) after the fluid accommodated in the fluid accommodating portion is filled up to the position of the valve mechanism of the fluid channel, the fluid channel is closed by the valve mechanism. The fluid ejecting apparatus.

  In this apparatus, the fluid flow path is closed by the valve mechanism, and negative pressure is generated in the fluid flow path on the fluid discharge portion side from the position of the valve mechanism by suction by the suction means. When the closing of the fluid channel by the valve mechanism is released, the fluid channel is filled with the fluid by the negative pressure. After the fluid is filled to the position of the valve mechanism of the fluid flow path, the fluid flow path is closed by the valve mechanism. Therefore, the initial state can be satisfactorily formed in this apparatus.

Application Example 6 The fluid ejecting apparatus according to Application Example 5,
The initial state of the fluid ejection device is further
(E) Before the step (a), the fluid ejecting apparatus is formed by a method including a step of filling the fluid channel with the pre-use liquid and connecting the fluid containing portion to the fluid channel. .

  In this fluid ejecting apparatus, since the fluid channel is filled with the pre-use liquid and the fluid container is connected to the fluid channel, suction is performed by the suction means. A well-filled state where the part up to the valve mechanism is filled with fluid and the part other than the part filled with fluid in the fluid discharge part and fluid flow path is filled well. can do.

Application Example 7 The fluid ejection device according to Application Example 1,
The fluid ejecting apparatus, wherein the fluid ejecting unit is not filled with the fluid before the first use of the fluid ejecting apparatus after the fluid is accommodated in the fluid accommodating part.

  In this apparatus, since the fluid ejection unit is not filled with fluid, fluid clogging and fluid leakage in the fluid ejection unit can be suppressed.

Application Example 8 The fluid ejection device according to any one of Application Example 1 to Application Example 7,
A plurality of the fluid containing portions containing the fluid;
The fluid ejecting apparatus, wherein the flow path forming unit forms a plurality of the fluid flow paths corresponding to the plurality of fluid storage units.

  In this apparatus, it is possible to suppress the intrusion of foreign matter into the fluid storage portion before the start of use of the plurality of fluid flow paths.

[Application Example 9] The fluid ejection device according to any one of Application Examples 1 to 8, further comprising:
A carriage that moves in a state in which the fluid discharge unit is mounted;
The fluid ejecting apparatus, wherein the fluid accommodating portion is disposed at a position different from the position on the carriage.

  In this device, in a so-called off-carriage type device, it is possible to suppress the entry of foreign matter into the fluid storage portion before the start of use.

Application Example 10 The fluid ejecting apparatus according to any one of Application Example 1 to Application Example 9,
The fluid ejecting apparatus, wherein the fluid is liquid ink.

  In this apparatus, in the apparatus for ejecting liquid ink, it is possible to suppress the intrusion of foreign matter into the liquid ink container before the start of use while suppressing the use of unnecessary materials after the start of use.

Application Example 11 A method of filling a fluid in a fluid ejecting apparatus,
The fluid ejecting apparatus includes:
A fluid container for containing fluid;
A fluid discharge section for discharging the fluid;
A flow path forming part that forms a fluid flow path from the fluid containing part to the fluid discharge part;
A valve mechanism capable of opening and closing the fluid flow path;
Suction means for sucking the fluid flow path on the fluid discharge part side from the position of the valve mechanism,
The method
(A) closing the fluid flow path by the valve mechanism;
(B) generating a negative pressure in the fluid flow path on the fluid discharge part side from the position of the valve mechanism by suction by the suction means;
(C) releasing the fluid channel closed by the valve mechanism;
(D) closing the fluid flow path by the valve mechanism after the fluid accommodated in the fluid accommodation part is filled up to the position of the valve mechanism of the fluid flow path.

  In this method, the fluid ejecting apparatus is in a state where at least a portion of the fluid flow path from the position of the fluid accommodating portion to the position of the valve mechanism is filled with the fluid and the valve mechanism closes the fluid flow path. Can do. For this reason, in this method, it is possible to suppress the entry of foreign matter into the fluid storage portion before the start of use in the fluid ejecting apparatus.

[Application Example 12] The method according to Application Example 11, further comprising:
(E) before the step (a), filling the fluid flow path with a pre-use liquid that does not contain a solid component, and connecting the fluid containing part to the fluid flow path.

  In this method, the fluid ejecting apparatus is configured such that a portion from the position of the fluid accommodating portion of the fluid flow path to the position of the valve mechanism is filled with fluid, and a portion of the fluid ejection portion or the fluid flow path is filled with fluid. It can be in the state where the pre-use liquid is filled in other parts. Therefore, in this method, even when the fluid ejecting apparatus is exposed to a high temperature environment before the start of use, it is possible to suppress an increase in internal pressure of the fluid discharge unit and the fluid flow path, and to suppress fluid leakage. .

  Note that the present invention can be realized in various forms, for example, in the form of a fluid ejecting apparatus, a fluid ejecting apparatus, a printing apparatus, a manufacturing method of these apparatuses, a fluid filling method for these apparatuses, and the like. Can be realized.

Next, embodiments of the present invention will be described in the following order based on examples.
A. First embodiment:
B. Second embodiment:
C. Third embodiment:
D. Variations:

A. First embodiment:
FIG. 1 is an explanatory diagram illustrating a schematic configuration of a printer 10 as a fluid ejecting apparatus according to a first embodiment of the invention. The printer 10 is an ink jet printer that records characters and figures by ejecting liquid ink as a fluid onto a printing paper P that is a recording medium.

  The printer 10 includes a main body housing 20 that houses the printing mechanism unit 50. In the main body casing 20, the paper feed tray 12 that introduces the printing paper P supplied to the printing mechanism unit 50 into the main body casing 20, and the printing paper P discharged from the printing mechanism unit 50 is stored in the main body casing. A paper discharge tray 14 led out to the outside of 20 is provided. A detailed configuration of the printing mechanism unit 50 will be described later.

  The main body housing 20 accommodates a control unit 40 that controls each unit of the printer 10. In this embodiment, the control unit 40 includes hardware such as a central processing unit (CPU), a read only memory (Read Only Memory, ROM), and a random access memory (Random Access Memory, RAM). ASIC (Application Specific Integrated Circuits). Software that implements various functions of the printer 10 is installed in the control unit 40.

  On the upper surface of the main body housing 20, an upper housing 30 that is a housing case for housing a plurality of ink packs 310 is disposed. The upper housing 30 is coupled to the main body housing 20 so as to be openable and closable around the rotation shaft 350. Each of the plurality of ink packs 310 functioning as an ink supply source contains liquid inks of different colors.

  In this embodiment, the ink pack 310 is formed as a flat bag having a substantially rectangular plane having a substantially elliptical cross section by a flexible sheet, and has a pack port 60 capable of deriving ink disposed on one short side. . In this embodiment, the plurality of ink packs 310 are held in a state in which one long side is lifted and obliquely overlapped. In the present embodiment, four ink packs 310 corresponding to four color inks of black, cyan, magenta, and yellow are accommodated in the upper housing 30. The number of ink packs 310 and the color of the ink stored in the ink pack 310 can be set variously. For example, six ink packs 310 corresponding to a total of six colors of ink, including light cyan and light magenta added to the above four colors. May be accommodated in the upper housing 30.

  The upper housing 30 is provided with an ink supply unit 330 to which the pack port 60 of the ink pack 310 is connected. A supply tube 340 is connected to the ink supply unit 330 to guide the ink drawn from the ink pack 310 to the ink supply unit 330 toward the printing mechanism unit 50. In the supply tube 340, four tubular flow paths corresponding to the four ink packs 310 are formed. The ink supply unit 330 and the supply tube 340 form a part of an ink flow path from the ink pack 310 to a recording head 810 (described later) of the printing mechanism unit 50.

  The supply tube 340 has a joint 410. Since the portion of the supply tube 340 closer to the printing mechanism portion 50 than the joint 410 has a curved portion, as will be described later, it is formed of a relatively flexible material (for example, a polyethylene elastomer). In addition, a portion of the supply tube 340 closer to the ink supply unit 330 than the joint 410 is formed of a material with relatively low flexibility (for example, polypropylene).

  FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view illustrating a schematic configuration of the printer 10 in a state where the upper housing 30 is closed. FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view illustrating a schematic configuration of the printer 10 with the upper housing 30 opened. As shown in FIG. 3, the upper housing 30 is coupled to the main body housing 20 so as to be openable and closable around a rotation shaft 350. By opening the upper housing 30, the upper portion of the printing mechanism unit 50 accommodated in the main body housing 20 is exposed. Therefore, in the printer 10 of this embodiment, the degree of freedom of the position where the ink pack 310 is arranged can be improved, and the upper housing 30 that houses the ink pack 310 can be used as a cover of the printing mechanism unit 50. The printing mechanism unit 50 accommodated in the main body housing 20 can be easily maintained.

  As shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, the upper housing 30 includes a lower housing 360 that constitutes an inner bottom surface of the upper housing 30 and an upper housing 370 that constitutes an inner ceiling of the upper housing 30. In the lower housing 360, a plurality of holder guides 362, which are part of the inner bottom surface formed by the lower housing 360, are arranged substantially parallel to the rotation shaft 350 and at substantially equal intervals.

  Inside the upper housing 30, a plurality of holders 380 on which ink packs 310 are placed are installed. The holder 380 includes an inclined plate 381 that is inclined with respect to the holder guide 362. The ink pack 310 is placed on the upper surface of the inclined plate 381 of the holder 380 so that one flat surface of the flat bag portion of the ink pack 310 contacts. In the present embodiment, the ink pack 310 is bonded with a double-sided tape on at least a part of the surface of the holder 380 that contacts the inclined plate 381. A base portion 382 that can be inserted into the holder guide 362 is formed below the inclined plate 381 in the holder 380. After the base portion 382 of the holder 380 is inserted into the holder guide 362, as will be described later, the base portion 382 is fastened and fixed to the lower housing 360 with fixing screws 388 and 389 which are fastening members. The plurality of holders 380 are arranged inside the lower housing 360 in a state where the inclined plate 381 of one holder 380 overlaps the ink pack 310 placed on the other holder 380 adjacent on the inclined plate 381 side. They are arranged side by side along the bottom. As shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, the inclined plate 381 of the holder 380 is inclined with respect to the holder guide 362 of the lower housing 360 by the inclination angle θh from the closed state of the upper housing 30 to the open state. In this embodiment, the movable angle θc at which the upper housing 30 can be opened and closed about the rotation shaft 350 is about 45 degrees, whereas the inclination angle θh of the inclined plate 381 with respect to the holder guide 362 is about 40 degrees. is there.

  Thus, in this embodiment, since each of the ink packs 310 is placed on the inclined plate 381 of the holder 380, the weight of the ink packs 310 is increased while efficiently storing the plurality of ink packs 310. It is possible to prevent the ink pack 310 from being stretched. Further, since the ink pack 310 is held from below through the closed state of the upper housing 30 from the closed state, the ink pack 310 can be prevented from being excessively pressed against the adjacent holder 380 by its own weight.

  As shown in FIG. 2, on the back surface of the inclined plate 381 in the holder 380, a plate-like back surface auxiliary rib 384 along the ink pack 310 placed on the adjacent holder 380 is suspended. On the inner bottom surface of the lower housing 360, a plate-like holder erected toward the lower side of the inclined plate 381 in the holder 380 positioned at the end of the inclined plate 381 on the inclined side among the plurality of holders 380 arranged side by side. An auxiliary rib 364 is provided. In this embodiment, the upper portion of the holder auxiliary rib 364 contacts the back surface of the inclined plate 381 of the holder 380. By providing the holder auxiliary rib 364 upright, the holder 380 can be reinforced against the force in the direction in which the inclined plate 381 is inclined. On the inner ceiling of the upper housing 370, along the upper side of the ink pack 310 placed on the holder 380 located at the end opposite to the side on which the inclined plate 381 is inclined among the plurality of holders 380 arranged side by side. A plate-like end auxiliary rib 374 is vertically provided. The end auxiliary rib 374 can prevent the ink pack 310 placed on the holder 380 located at the end opposite to the side where the inclined plate 381 is inclined from being excessively deformed. On the inner ceiling of the upper housing 370, a plate-like intermediate auxiliary rib 376 is vertically suspended along a portion sandwiched between the two holders 380 above the ink pack 310 placed on the holder 380. . The intermediate auxiliary rib 376 can prevent the upper portion of the ink pack 310 that is not supported by the back surface of the inclined plate 381 of the adjacent holder from being excessively deformed. An engaging portion 373 that engages with the upper end portion 383 of the inclined plate 381 in the holder 380 is disposed on the inner ceiling of the upper housing 370. The engagement part 373 can suppress the holder 380 from being deformed excessively.

  As shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, the bottom portion (lower housing 360) of the upper housing 30 has a shape in which a portion where the ink pack 310 is installed protrudes downward. Thereby, the space in the upper housing | casing 30 for installation of the ink pack 310 can be increased. The printer 10 of this embodiment is a so-called off-carriage printer in which a container (ink pack 310) containing ink is arranged at a position different from the carriage 80 (see FIG. 6) of the printing mechanism unit 50. For this reason, it is possible to reduce the height of the printing mechanism unit 50 as compared with a so-called on-carriage printer in which the ink container is disposed on the carriage. Therefore, in the printer 10 of the present embodiment, it is relatively easy to make a part of the lower housing 360 protrude downward without interfering with the printing mechanism unit 50. Accordingly, for example, an existing on-carriage printer housing having a scanner mechanism in a portion corresponding to the upper housing 30 can be used as the housing of the printer 10 of the present embodiment with only minor changes. Is possible.

  FIG. 4 is a top view showing an internal configuration of the upper housing 30. As shown in FIG. 4, four holders 380 on which the ink packs 310 are placed are installed in the upper housing 30 so as to be folded on each other, and are fixed to the lower housing 360 with fixing screws 388 and 389. At this time, the pack port 60 of each ink pack 310 is inside the guide portion 302 of the ink supply portion 330 and the supply needle 320 is inserted. By inserting the supply needle 320 into the pack port 60, the ink flow path from the ink pack 310 to the supply tube 340 is opened in the ink supply unit 330. The ink supply unit 330 is provided with a guard plate 332 (indicated by a one-dot chain line in FIG. 5) that covers the upper part of the connection part of the ink pack 310 with the pack port 60. The guard plate 332 has an opening 333 into which a tool for fastening a fixing screw 388 for fixing the holder 380 to the lower housing 360 can be inserted.

  FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional view illustrating a schematic configuration of the printer 10 in a state where the upper housing 30 is closed. FIG. 5 shows a cross section viewed from the side opposite to the cross section shown in FIG. FIG. 6 is an explanatory diagram showing a configuration around the printing mechanism unit 50 of the printer 10. As shown in FIGS. 5 and 6, the supply tube 340 connects the ink supply unit 330 and the carriage 80 of the printing mechanism unit 50, and supplies the ink in the ink pack 310 to the carriage 80. Supply tube 340 is supported by support portions 420 and 430. The support parts 420 and 430 are fixed to the main body housing 20 of the printer 10 directly or indirectly. Therefore, the supply tube 340 is supported by the printer 10 main body via the support portions 420 and 430.

  As shown in FIG. 6, the printing mechanism unit 50 includes a rectangular platen 530 disposed in a printing region where ink droplets are ejected onto the printing paper P. On the platen 530, the printing paper P is fed by a paper feeding mechanism (not shown). The printing mechanism unit 50 includes a carriage 80 that is connected to the supply tube 340 and on which the recording head 810 is mounted. The carriage 80 forms part of the ink flow path from the ink pack 310 to the recording head 810. The carriage 80 is supported so as to be movable in the longitudinal direction of the platen 530 along the guide rod 520, and is driven via a timing belt 512 by a carriage motor 510 serving as a carriage driving unit. As a result, the carriage 80 reciprocates on the platen 530 in the longitudinal direction. The recording head 810 receives ink supplied via the carriage 80 and ejects ink onto the printing paper P.

  Inside the main body housing 20, a home position for waiting the carriage 80 is provided in a non-printing area that is distant from the printing area where the platen 530 is disposed to one end side. At the home position, a maintenance mechanism unit 70 for maintaining the carriage 80 is disposed.

  As shown in FIG. 6, the maintenance mechanism unit 70 includes a head cap 740 that covers the lower surface of the recording head 810, an attachment / detachment connection unit 750 that is detachably connected to gas recovery chambers 821 and 841 (described later) of the carriage 80, and recording. A wiper blade 760 that wipes off ink adhering to the lower surface of the head 810, and a vacuum pump 710 that is a pressure reducing unit that supplies a negative pressure to the head cap 740 and the detachable connection portion 750 via a vacuum tube 715 are provided. The head cap 740, the detachable connection portion 750, and the wiper blade 760 are disposed on the lifting base 730, and the lifting base 730 is supported by the base 720 fixed to the main body housing 20 so as to be lifted and lowered.

  FIG. 7 is an explanatory diagram showing the internal configuration of the carriage 80. A recording head 810 that ejects ink droplets from the nozzles 812 by the expansion and contraction of a piezoelectric vibrator (not shown) is disposed below the carriage 80. In the present embodiment, the recording head 810 is formed with four nozzle groups including a plurality of nozzles 812 corresponding to the four colors of ink. The recording head 810 having the nozzles 812 corresponds to a fluid ejection unit in the present invention.

  A second carriage member 820, a third carriage member 830, a fourth carriage member 840, and a fifth carriage member 850 are stacked in this order on the recording head 810. The fifth carriage member 850 constitutes the upper surface of the carriage 80 and has four ink inlets 859 that are connected to the supply tube 340 and form part of the ink flow path. The fourth carriage member 840 includes four upstream trap chambers 842 that are stacked between the fifth carriage member 850 and the third carriage member 830 and communicate with the ink introduction port 859 of the fifth carriage member 850. The third carriage member 830 is stacked between the fourth carriage member 840 and the second carriage member 820, and has four ink flow paths 834 communicating with the upstream trap chamber 842 of the fourth carriage member 840 via the filter 846. The four pressure regulating valves 836 for reducing the pressure of the ink flowing down to the recording head 810 and the four ink flow paths 838 for flowing the ink from the pressure regulating valve 836 to the recording head 810 are provided. The second carriage member 820 includes four downstream trap chambers 822 that are stacked between the third carriage member 830 and the recording head 810 and communicate with the ink flow path 838 of the third carriage member 830. The downstream trap chamber 822 communicates with the nozzle 812 via the filter 826.

  In the carriage 80, a gas recovery chamber 841 adjacent to the upstream trap chamber 842 across the transmission wall 844 and a gas recovery chamber 821 adjacent to the downstream trap chamber 822 across the transmission wall 824 are formed. The gas recovery chamber 821 and the gas recovery chamber 841 are provided to remove bubbles mixed in the ink in the ink flow path. That is, the carriage 80 has a hollow needle 852 that can be connected to the detachable connection portion 750 (FIG. 6), and when the hollow needle 852 of the carriage 80 is connected to the detachable connection portion 750, the gas recovery chambers 821 and 841 are The detachable connection portion 750 communicates with the decompression relay chamber 851. At this time, when suction is performed by the vacuum pump 710, a negative pressure is provided to the gas recovery chambers 821 and 841, and bubbles mixed in the ink in the ink flow path are removed.

  FIG. 8 is an explanatory diagram showing a state where the carriage 80 has moved to a position where it can be connected to the head cap 740. FIG. 9 is an explanatory diagram showing a state in which the head cap 740 is lifted and connected to the carriage 80. The elevating base 730 of the maintenance mechanism unit 70 includes an urging support portion 734 that supports the head cap 740 while urging it upward, and an urging support portion 735 that supports the detachable connection portion 750 while urging it upward. It is arranged. A lift motor 722 is disposed on the base 720 of the maintenance mechanism unit 70. When the lift motor 722 rotates the lead screw 726 via the transmission gears 724 and 725, the lift base 730 screwed into the lead screw 726 is As the lead screw 726 rotates, it moves up and down.

  The maintenance mechanism section 70 is provided with a branch section 716 that branches the vacuum tube 715 (FIG. 6) into a head cap 740 and a detachable connection section 750, and a branch tube 717 is connected between the branch section 716 and the head cap 740. A branch tube 718 is connected between the branch portion 716 and the detachable connection portion 750. As shown in FIG. 9, when the head cap 740 is lifted and connected to the carriage 80, the head cap 740 is connected to the lower surface of the recording head 810 and communicates with the connection port 742 connected to the branch tube 717. 741 is formed. In this state, when suction is performed by the vacuum pump 710 (FIG. 6), negative pressure is provided to the ink suction chamber 741. Thereby, suction in the ink flow path is performed via the nozzle 812 of the recording head 810. Note that a sponge 744 that absorbs ink discharged from the nozzles 812 to the ink suction chamber 741 is disposed on the bottom surface of the ink suction chamber 741.

  FIG. 10 is a flowchart showing the flow of the ink filling process of the printer 10 in the first embodiment. The ink filling process is executed, for example, after the final stage of the manufacturing process of the printer 10 (shipment preparation stage), that is, after the printing inspection and cleaning of the ink supply system.

  In step S110, the ink pack 310 containing ink is connected to the ink supply unit 330 (see FIG. 4). In step S110, connection of the ink pack 310 that does not contain ink to the ink supply unit 330 and accommodation (filling) of ink into the ink pack 310 may be executed.

  In step S120 (FIG. 10), the head cap 740 of the maintenance mechanism unit 70 is connected to the carriage 80 (see FIG. 9). In step S130, suction is performed by the vacuum pump 710 (FIG. 6). When suction is performed by the vacuum pump 710, negative pressure is provided to the ink suction chamber 741 (FIG. 9), and suction in the ink flow path is performed via the nozzles 812 of the recording head 810. As a result, the ink flows out from the ink pack 310, and the ink is filled in the ink flow path. At this time, the range of the ink flow path filled with ink changes according to the time during which the vacuum pump 710 performs the suction operation. The suction operation of the vacuum pump 710 may be performed so that ink is filled from the ink supply unit 330 connected to the ink pack 310 to a position in the middle of the supply tube 340, or the recording head 810 ( The suction operation of the vacuum pump 710 may be performed so that the liquid is filled up to (FIG. 7) (that is, the ink is filled over the entire ink flow path).

  By the ink filling process described above, the printer 10 is in a state where the ink is filled in at least a part of the ink flow path from the ink pack 310 to the recording head 810 and the recording head 810 itself (hereinafter referred to as “first initial state”). Call). Thereafter, the printer 10 is shipped and started to be used by the user. That is, the printer 10 is in the first initial state before use of the first printer 10 after ink is stored in the ink pack 310. Therefore, unnecessary materials such as logistics ink and preserving liquid are not used after the start of use of the printer 10. Further, before starting the use of the printer 10, it is possible to prevent foreign matter such as logistics ink or air from entering the ink pack 310, and the quality of the ink in the ink pack 310 (for example, the degree of deaeration) is reduced. Can be suppressed. In addition, since the ink pack 310 is already installed in the printer 10 at the start of use by the user, the user does not need to install the ink pack 310 and the burden on the user is suppressed. Further, since the printer 10 is maintained in a state where the ink channel is filled with ink (first initial state) until the start of use by the user, the surface of the material forming the ink channel becomes familiar with the ink. Thus, the ink filling into the ink flow path after the start of user use is favorably executed.

  Note that the ink filling process (FIG. 10) of this embodiment may be executed when the ink in one or more ink packs 310 installed in the printer 10 has run out after the start of use by the user. In the ink filling process at this time, after the ink pack 310 that has run out of ink is removed, the ink pack 310 is connected in step S110. Alternatively, ink storage (filling) in the ink pack 310 that has run out of ink may be executed. Thereafter, steps S120 and S130 are executed. Also in this case, the printer 10 is in the first initial state before use of the first printer 10 after the ink is stored in the ink pack 310 (out of ink).

B. Second embodiment:
FIG. 11 is a top view showing the internal configuration of the upper housing 30 of the printer 10 in the second embodiment. The difference from the first embodiment shown in FIG. 4 is that the printer 10 of the second embodiment includes a choke valve mechanism 900. The choke valve mechanism 900 is disposed in the vicinity of the connection position between the ink supply unit 330 and the supply tube 340. As will be described later, the choke valve mechanism 900 is configured to open and close an ink flow path from the ink pack 310 to the recording head 810.

  FIG. 12 is an explanatory diagram schematically showing the configuration of the choke valve mechanism 900. FIG. 13 is a cross-sectional view taken along line S1-S1 in FIG. As shown in FIG. 12, the choke valve mechanism 900 includes a choke DC motor 910, a gear group 920 that transmits the rotational torque of the choke DC motor 910, and the ink supply unit 330 using the rotational torque transmitted by the gear group 920. A magnet portion 930 that moves toward and away from the magnet. FIG. 13A shows a state in which the magnet unit 930 is farthest from the ink supply unit 330 (hereinafter referred to as “remote state”), and FIG. 13B shows that the magnet unit 930 supplies ink. The state closest to the unit 330 (hereinafter referred to as the “closest approach state”) is shown. Note that the gear group 920 rotates idly when the magnet unit 930 is in the most remote state and further receives rotational torque in a direction to move the magnet unit 930 away from the ink supply unit 330, and the torque is applied to the magnet unit 930. It is configured not to be transmitted to. The same applies to the case where the rotational torque in the direction in which the magnet unit 930 is further brought closer to the ink supply unit 330 is transmitted when the magnet unit 930 is in the closest state.

  Furthermore, the choke valve mechanism 900 includes a valve body 932 installed inside the ink supply unit 330, as shown in FIG. The valve body 932 is slidable so as to open and close the hollow flow path 335 formed in the ink supply unit 330 to form the ink flow path, and the hollow flow path 335 is opened by the spring 934. The position is biased (see FIG. 13A). The valve body 932 is formed of a metal such as iron. As shown in FIG. 13B, when the magnet unit 930 approaches the ink supply unit 330, the valve body 932 closes the hollow flow path 335 by magnetic force. Move to. Thus, the choke valve mechanism 900 changes the ratio of the cross section in which the ink can actually flow in the cross section of the hollow flow path 335 formed in the ink supply unit 330 from 100% (completely released state) to 0%. It can be increased or decreased in the range up to (completely closed state). FIG. 13 shows only one hollow flow path 335 and valve body 932 corresponding to one color ink, but the choke valve mechanism 900 includes four hollow flow paths 335 corresponding to four color inks. And the valve body 932, and the four hollow flow paths 335 can be opened and closed by moving the magnet unit 930.

  FIG. 14 is an explanatory diagram showing the configuration of the motor drive circuit 42 included in the control unit 40 (FIG. 1). The motor drive circuit 42 includes a DC motor drive circuit 43 for the carriage motor 510 that drives the carriage 80 (FIG. 6) and a DC motor drive circuit 44 for the paper feed motor 540 that feeds paper.

  The motor drive circuit 42 of this embodiment further includes a stepping motor drive circuit 45. The printer 10 of the present embodiment is configured by diverting the configuration of an existing on-carriage printer provided with a scanner mechanism in a portion corresponding to the upper housing 30, and the motor drive circuit 42 is for the scanner motor SM. A stepping motor drive circuit 45 is included as a drive circuit. The scanner motor SM is, for example, a four-phase stepping motor, and the stepping motor drive circuit 45 drives the scanner motor SM by, for example, W1-2 phase excitation.

  In this embodiment, the choke DC motor 910 is driven by the stepping motor drive circuit 45. The choke DC motor 910 is connected to the A-phase terminal of the stepping motor drive circuit 45. The choke DC motor 910 is driven using the microstep drive signal of the stepping motor drive circuit 45. FIG. 15 is an explanatory diagram showing an example of a microstep drive signal of the stepping motor drive circuit 45. As shown in FIG. 15, the stepping motor drive circuit 45 can finely set the angle for the scanner motor SM by a combination of A-phase and B-phase current values. In this embodiment, for example, the A-phase current value E1 is applied to the choke DC motor 910 to drive the choke DC motor 910.

  FIG. 16 is an explanatory diagram showing the drive timing of the choke DC motor 910. FIG. 16 (a) shows an applied current to the choke DC motor 910 during the operation of moving the magnet unit 930 (see FIG. 13) from the most remote state to the closest state and closing the hollow flow path 335. FIG. 16B shows the output current of the choke DC motor 910 at that time. As shown in FIG. 16A, a constant current is applied to the choke DC motor 910 by the stepping motor drive circuit 45 during a period from the start of operation until 300 ms elapses (referred to as “period T1”). At this time, the rotational torque of the choke DC motor 910 is transmitted to the magnet unit 930 via the gear group 920 and approaches the ink supply unit 330 until the magnet unit 930 is in the closest state.

  During the period from the end of the period T1 until 80 ms has elapsed (referred to as “period T2”), the stepping motor drive circuit 45 applies a current in the direction opposite to the applied current in the period T1 to the choke DC motor 910. The magnitude of the current at this time is preferably as close to 0 as possible. The reason why the current in the direction opposite to the applied current in the period T1 is applied in the period T2 is to stop the choke DC motor 910 quickly. That is, if no current is applied to the choke DC motor 910 in the period T2, the choke DC motor 910 continues to rotate by inertia even after the current application is stopped, as shown by a broken line in FIG. The rotation is finally stopped about 1 s after the start. At this time, an unpleasant sound may occur. On the other hand, in the period T2, when a current in the opposite direction to the applied current in the period T1 is applied, as shown by a solid line in FIG. The rotation of the motor stops and the generation of unpleasant noise is suppressed.

  Note that the applied current and output current of the choke DC motor 910 during the operation of opening the hollow flow path 335 by moving the magnet unit 930 from the closest state to the remotest state are the hollow flow path 335 shown in FIG. The current is opposite to the applied current and output current during the closing operation. Further, the length of the period T1 (300 ms in this embodiment) is set in advance as a drive time of the DC motor for choke 910 that is sufficient for the magnet unit 930 to move from the most remote state to the closest state (or vice versa). It has been established. In addition, the length of the period T2 (80 ms in this embodiment) is determined in advance as a time sufficient for the rotation of the choke DC motor 910 to stop after the current application is stopped in the period T1.

  Thus, in the present embodiment, the choke DC motor 910 is driven by the stepping motor drive circuit 45. Therefore, existing circuits can be used effectively, and new circuit components are not required. Moreover, the existing design can be diverted and utilized, and the man-hour for the new design can be reduced. Further, a motor that does not require high-precision rotation control, such as the choke DC motor 910, can be controlled without feedback control.

  FIG. 17 is a flowchart showing the flow of ink filling processing of the printer 10 in the second embodiment. The ink filling process in the second embodiment is the same as the ink filling process (FIG. 10) in the first embodiment, for example, the final stage of the manufacturing process of the printer 10 (shipment preparation stage), that is, the print inspection and the cleaning of the ink supply system. Will be executed later. In step S110, similarly to the ink filling process (FIG. 10) of the first embodiment, the ink pack 310 containing the ink is connected to the ink supply unit 330 (see FIG. 11).

  In step S112 (FIG. 17), the hollow flow path 335 (FIG. 13) is closed by operating the choke valve mechanism 900. In step S120, the head cap 740 of the maintenance mechanism unit 70 is connected to the carriage 80 (see FIG. 9). In step S132, suction is performed by the vacuum pump 710 (FIG. 6). When suction is performed by the vacuum pump 710, negative pressure is provided to the ink suction chamber 741 (FIG. 9), and suction in the ink flow path is performed via the nozzles 812 of the recording head 810. At this time, since the hollow flow path 335 of the ink supply unit 330 is closed by the choke valve mechanism 900, a negative pressure is generated at a portion on the recording head 810 side from the position of the choke valve mechanism 900. At this time, the cleaning liquid remaining in the ink flow path is discharged. On the other hand, no negative pressure is supplied to the ink pack 310 side portion from the position of the choke valve mechanism 900 in the ink flow path, and the ink in the ink pack 310 remains in the ink pack 310 as it is. In step S140, this state is waited for a predetermined time, and the negative pressure generated in the portion on the recording head 810 side from the position of the choke valve mechanism 900 in the ink flow path is maintained.

  In step S150 (FIG. 17), the hollow flow path 335 (FIG. 13) is opened by operating the choke valve mechanism 900. As a result, negative pressure is also supplied to the ink pack 310 side portion from the position of the choke valve mechanism 900 in the ink flow path, the ink flows out from the ink pack 310, and the ink is filled in the ink flow path. After the ink is filled to the position of the choke valve mechanism 900 in the ink flow path, the hollow flow path 335 (FIG. 13) is closed by the operation of the choke valve mechanism 900 (step S160). Note that the closing operation of the hollow flow path 335 by the choke valve mechanism 900 is performed at such a timing that the ink is not filled up to the recording head 810 in the carriage 80.

  By the ink filling process in the second embodiment described above, the printer 10 is filled with ink at least from the position facing the ink pack 310 to the position of the choke valve mechanism 900 in the ink flow path and the choke valve mechanism. 900 is in a state of closing the hollow channel 335 (hereinafter referred to as “second initial state”). Thereafter, the printer 10 is shipped and started to be used by the user. That is, the printer 10 is in the second initial state before the first printer 10 is used after the ink is stored in the ink pack 310. Therefore, unnecessary materials such as logistics ink and preserving liquid are not used after the start of use of the printer 10. Further, before starting the use of the printer 10, it is possible to prevent foreign matter such as logistics ink or air from entering the ink pack 310, and the quality of the ink in the ink pack 310 (for example, the degree of deaeration) is reduced. Can be suppressed. In particular, in the second initial state, the choke valve mechanism 900 closes the hollow flow path 335, so that the portion from the position facing the ink pack 310 to the position of the choke valve mechanism 900 in the ink flow path is filled. The ink is maintained in that part even after shipment. Therefore, the entry of foreign matter into the ink pack 310 can be reliably suppressed. In addition, since the ink pack 310 is already installed in the printer 10 at the start of use by the user, the user does not need to install the ink pack 310 and the burden on the user is suppressed. Further, since the printer 10 is maintained in a state where the ink flow path is filled with ink (second initial state) until the start of use by the user, the surface of the material forming the ink flow path becomes familiar with the ink. Thus, the ink filling into the ink flow path after the start of user use is favorably executed.

  In the ink filling process in the second embodiment, the ink is not filled in the nozzles 812 in the recording head 810 before the first use of the printer 10 after the ink is stored in the ink pack 310. Therefore, for example, it is possible to suppress the clogging of the nozzles 812 due to the influence of the surrounding environment after the shipment of the printer 10 and before the start of use. The occurrence of ink leakage can be suppressed.

  Further, in the ink filling process in the second embodiment, the portion on the recording head 810 side from the choke valve mechanism 900 of the four ink flow paths corresponding to the four color inks by the suction by the vacuum pump 710 (step S132 in FIG. 17). A negative pressure is generated in common. Thereafter, by operating the choke valve mechanism 900, the hollow flow paths 335 corresponding to the four ink flow paths are opened (step S150 in FIG. 17), and the four ink flow paths are filled with ink. Therefore, variation in the filling state in the ink flow path for each of the four color inks is suppressed, and a good ink filling process can be realized.

  Further, in the ink filling process in the second embodiment, after the hollow flow path 335 is closed by the operation of the choke valve mechanism 900 (step S112 in FIG. 17), the suction by the vacuum pump 710 (step S132 in FIG. 17) is performed. . Therefore, it can be confirmed whether or not the choke valve mechanism 900 has a defect (such as a leak). Further, since the remaining cleaning liquid in the ink flow path can be discharged, it is possible to suppress the occurrence of defective ink suction (filling) due to the influence of the remaining cleaning liquid.

  Note that the ink filling process (FIG. 17) of the second embodiment is also similar to the ink filling process of the first embodiment, in one or more ink packs 310 installed in the printer 10 after the user starts using. It may be executed when ink runs out. In the ink filling process at this time, the ink pack 310 that has run out of ink is removed and the ink supply system is cleaned, and the ink pack 310 is connected in step S110. Alternatively, ink storage (filling) in the ink pack 310 that has run out of ink may be executed. Thereafter, the processing after step S112 is executed. Also in this case, the printer 10 starts the choke valve from at least the position facing the ink pack 310 in the ink flow path before using the first printer 10 after the ink is stored in the ink pack 310 (out of ink). A portion up to the position of the mechanism 900 is filled with ink, and the choke valve mechanism 900 closes the hollow flow path 335.

C. Third embodiment:
FIG. 18 is a flowchart showing the flow of the ink filling process of the printer 10 in the third embodiment. The ink filling process in the third embodiment is executed, for example, at the final stage (shipment preparation stage) of the manufacturing process of the printer 10 as in the ink filling process (FIG. 17) in the second embodiment. However, the flowchart shown in FIG. 18 is different from the flowchart shown in FIG. 17 in that the cleaning process (steps S60 to S90) of the ink supply system is also described.

  In step S60 (FIG. 18), a cleaning jig is mounted and the ink supply system is cleaned. In step S70, the ink supply system is filled with the cleaning liquid. In this embodiment, logistics ink is used as the cleaning liquid. The physical distribution ink used in this embodiment includes water as a base, a humectant, and a surfactant, but does not include a color material (dye or pigment) that is a solid component. The distribution ink corresponds to the pre-use liquid in the present invention. In step S80, the head cap 740 of the maintenance mechanism unit 70 is connected to the carriage 80 (see FIG. 9). In step S90, the cleaning jig is removed.

  After the ink supply system cleaning process (steps S60 to S90), as in the ink filling process of the second embodiment, the ink pack 310 containing ink is connected to the ink supply unit 330 (step S110 (FIG. 18), see FIG. Thereafter, the hollow flow path 335 (FIG. 13) is closed by the operation of the choke valve mechanism 900 (step S112), and the vacuum pump 710 (FIG. 6) is started to start the suction of the ink supply system ( Step S134). When suction is performed by the vacuum pump 710, negative pressure is provided to the ink suction chamber 741 (FIG. 9), and suction in the ink flow path is performed via the nozzles 812 of the recording head 810. At this time, negative pressure is supplied from the position of the choke valve mechanism 900 to the ink supply system on the recording head 810 side. However, since the hollow flow path 335 of the ink supply unit 330 is closed by the choke valve mechanism 900, the ink is supplied. No negative pressure is supplied to the ink pack 310 side portion from the position of the choke valve mechanism 900 in the flow path. In this state, the system waits for a predetermined time (step S144).

  In step S150 (FIG. 18), the hollow flow path 335 (FIG. 13) is opened by operating the choke valve mechanism 900. As a result, the ink flow path from the carriage 80 to the supply needle 320 (FIG. 12) is opened, and the cleaning liquid filled in the ink supply system is discharged into the head cap 740 by suction of the vacuum pump 710 (FIG. 6). At the same time, the ink flows out from the ink pack 310 into the ink flow path. After the ink is filled up to the position of the choke valve mechanism 900 in the ink flow path, the driving of the vacuum pump 710 is stopped (step S151), and this state is maintained for a predetermined waiting time (step S152). Thereby, at least a portion from the position facing the ink pack 310 to the position of the choke valve mechanism 900 in the ink flow path is filled with the ink supplied from the ink pack 310, and the remaining portion of the ink flow path and A state in which the recording head 810 is filled with the cleaning liquid is formed. In this state, the boundary surface between the ink supplied from the ink pack 310 and the cleaning liquid filled in the ink flow path in the cleaning step is located closer to the recording head 810 than the position of the choke valve mechanism 900 in the ink flow path.

  Thereafter, the head cap 740 and the carriage 80 of the maintenance mechanism unit 70 are separated (see step S153 (FIG. 18), FIG. 8). In this state, the driving of the vacuum pump 710 (FIG. 6) is started again (step S154). As a result, the cleaning liquid accumulated in the head cap 740 is discharged. The suction by the vacuum pump 710 at this time is also called idle suction. When the discharge of the cleaning liquid in the head cap 740 is completed, the driving of the vacuum pump 710 is stopped (step S155). Thereafter, the head cap 740 of the maintenance mechanism unit 70 is connected to the carriage 80 again (step S156), and the hollow flow path 335 (FIG. 13) is closed by the operation of the choke valve mechanism 900 (step S160). The closing operation of the hollow flow path 335 by the choke valve mechanism 900 may be performed after the standby step of step S152.

  By the ink filling process in the third embodiment described above, the printer 10 has the ink supplied from the ink pack 310 at least in the portion of the ink flow path from the position facing the ink pack 310 to the position of the choke valve mechanism 900. The remaining part of the ink flow path including the recording head 810 is filled with cleaning liquid (distribution ink), and the choke valve mechanism 900 closes the hollow flow path 335 (hereinafter referred to as “third initial state”). "). Thereafter, the printer 10 is shipped and started to be used by the user. That is, the printer 10 is in the third initial state before the first printer 10 is used after the ink is stored in the ink pack 310. Accordingly, it is possible to prevent foreign matter such as cleaning liquid or air from entering the ink pack 310 before the use of the printer 10 is started, and it is possible to reduce the quality (for example, the degree of deaeration) of the ink in the ink pack 310 and the ink. Generation of mixing of the ink in the pack 310 and the cleaning liquid can be suppressed. That is, in the third initial state, the choke valve mechanism 900 closes the hollow flow path 335, so that the portion from the position facing the ink pack 310 to the position of the choke valve mechanism 900 in the ink flow path is filled. The ink is maintained in that portion even after shipment, and the entry of foreign matter into the ink pack 310 is reliably suppressed.

  In addition, since the ink pack 310 is already installed in the printer 10 at the start of use by the user, the user does not need to install the ink pack 310 and the burden on the user is suppressed. In addition, the printer 10 is maintained in a state (third initial state) in which ink (ink supplied from the ink pack 310 and logistics ink) is filled in the ink flow path until the start of use by the user. The surface of the material forming the ink flow path becomes familiar with the ink, and the ink flow into the ink flow path after the start of user use is satisfactorily performed.

  In the third initial state, the recording head 810 is filled with a cleaning liquid (distribution ink) except for a portion filled with ink supplied from the ink pack 310 in the ink flow path. For example, even when the printer 10 is shipped and exposed to a high temperature environment before the start of use, the ink supply system and the recording head are compared with the case where the portion is not filled with a cleaning liquid (that is, air is present). An increase in the internal pressure of 810 can be suppressed, and ink leakage at a joint portion or the like can be suppressed. Further, since the cleaning liquid (distribution ink) does not contain a color material (dye or pigment) that is a solid component, the nozzle 812 is not clogged even when the printer 10 is exposed to a high temperature environment.

  In the ink filling process in the third embodiment, as in the second embodiment, the suction of the vacuum pump 710 causes the choke valve mechanism 900 of the four ink flow paths corresponding to the four colors of ink to be closer to the recording head 810 side. A negative pressure is generated in common to the portions. Thereafter, by operating the choke valve mechanism 900, the hollow flow paths 335 corresponding to the four ink flow paths are opened (step S150 in FIG. 18), and the four ink flow paths are filled with ink. Therefore, variation in the filling state in the ink flow path for each of the four color inks is suppressed, and a good ink filling process can be realized.

  Further, in the ink filling process in the third embodiment, similarly to the second embodiment, after the hollow flow path 335 is closed by the operation of the choke valve mechanism 900 (step S112 in FIG. 18), suction by the vacuum pump 710 (FIG. 18 step S134) is performed. Therefore, it can be confirmed whether or not the choke valve mechanism 900 has a defect (such as a leak).

  Note that the ink filling process (FIG. 18) of the third embodiment is also similar to the ink filling process of the first embodiment and the second embodiment. It may be executed when the ink in the ink pack 310 has run out. In the ink filling process at this time, the ink pack 310 that has run out of ink is removed and the ink supply system is cleaned (including filling of the cleaning liquid), and the ink pack 310 is connected in step S110. Alternatively, ink storage (filling) in the ink pack 310 that has run out of ink may be executed. Thereafter, the processing after step S112 is executed. Also in this case, the printer 10 starts the choke valve from at least the position facing the ink pack 310 in the ink flow path before using the first printer 10 after the ink is stored in the ink pack 310 (out of ink). The portion up to the position of the mechanism 900 is filled with ink supplied from the ink pack 310, the remaining portion of the ink flow path including the recording head 810 is filled with cleaning liquid (distribution ink), and the choke valve mechanism 900 is The hollow channel 335 is closed.

D. Variations:
The present invention is not limited to the above-described examples and embodiments, and can be implemented in various modes without departing from the gist thereof. For example, the following modifications are possible.

D1. Modification 1:
In the ink filling process (FIG. 17) of the second embodiment, the hollow flow path 335 may be closed after ink is filled up to the recording head 810 in the carriage 80. However, if the hollow flow path 335 is closed after ink is filled up to the position of the choke valve mechanism 900 in the ink flow path as in the second embodiment, the position facing the ink pack 310 in the ink flow path. Since the ink filled in the portion from the position to the position of the choke valve mechanism 900 is maintained in the portion, it is preferable in that the deterioration of the ink quality can be suppressed. Further, if the hollow flow path 335 is closed at a timing at which ink does not fill up to the recording head 810 in the carriage 80, it is preferable in that clogging of the nozzles 812 and occurrence of ink leakage can be suppressed.

  Further, in the ink filling process (FIG. 17) of the second embodiment, after the hollow flow path 335 is closed by the choke valve mechanism 900 and sucked by the vacuum pump 710, the hollow flow path 335 is opened to thereby open the ink flow path. Although the ink is filled in the ink, the ink flow path may be filled by performing suction by the vacuum pump 710 while the hollow flow path 335 is opened.

D2. Modification 2:
In each of the above embodiments, the configuration of the printer 10 is merely an example, and other configurations can be adopted as the configuration of the printer 10. For example, the motor drive circuit 42 (FIG. 14) of the printer 10 does not need to include the stepping motor drive circuit 45, and the choke DC motor 910 may be driven by the DC motor drive circuit. The application current and application time to the choke DC motor 910 shown in FIG. 16 are merely examples, and the application current and application time can be set arbitrarily. Further, it is not always necessary to apply a current in the period T2.

  Further, the choke valve mechanism 900 does not need to be installed in the ink supply unit 330, and may be installed anywhere in the ink flow path from the ink pack 310 to the recording head 810. Further, the choke valve mechanism 900 can employ any configuration as long as the ink flow path can be opened and closed.

  Further, in the ink filling process of each of the above embodiments, the suction of the ink flow path is performed by the vacuum pump 710. If the printer 10 has another pump capable of sucking the ink flow path, the other The ink flow path may be sucked in the ink filling process with this pump. In such a case, it is not always necessary to connect the head cap 740 to the carriage 80 in the ink filling process.

  Further, the configuration of the carriage 80 in each of the above embodiments (FIG. 7) is merely an example, and other configurations can be adopted as the configuration of the carriage 80. For example, the carriage 80 is not necessarily required to include the gas recovery chambers 841 and 821, the hollow needle 852, the pressure regulating valve 836, and the like.

  In each of the above embodiments, the plurality of ink packs 310 contain different colors of ink, but the plurality of ink packs 310 may contain the same color of ink.

D3. Modification 3:
In each of the embodiments described above, the upper housing 30 may be slidably attached to the main body housing 20 instead of pivotally attaching the upper housing 30 to the main body housing 20. Accordingly, the ink pack 310 can be accommodated in the upper housing 30 in a more stable state.

  Further, in each of the above embodiments, the holder 380 may be disposed substantially along the axial direction of the rotating shaft 350 as shown in FIG. 19 in the direction in which the holder 380 is disposed in the lower housing 360. According to the form of FIG. 19, the height of each of the ink packs 310 held by the upper housing 30 is substantially the same from the closed state to the open state of the upper housing 30, so that the ink packs 310 are accommodated in each of the ink packs 310. The pressure heads of the formed ink can be made substantially the same. Thereby, the ejection quality of the ink ejected from the recording head 810 can be improved.

  In addition, as shown in FIG. 20, the holder 380 may be disposed so that the inclined plate 381 is inclined toward the rotation shaft 350. According to the form of FIG. 20, as shown in FIG. 2 and FIG. 3, rather than disposing the holder 380 with the inclined plate 381 inclined in the direction opposite to the rotation shaft 350, In the open state, the ink pack 310 can be placed in a stable state by the inclined plate 381 of the holder 380.

D4. Modification 4:
The fluid targeted by the fluid supply device of the present invention is not limited to the above-described liquid such as ink, but is intended to target various fluids such as metal paste, powder, and liquid crystal. As a typical example of the fluid ejecting apparatus, there is an ink jet recording apparatus including the ink jet recording head for image recording as described above. However, the present invention is not limited to the ink jet recording apparatus, and an image recording apparatus such as a printer. In addition, color material injection devices used for manufacturing color filters such as liquid crystal displays, electrode material injection devices used for electrode formation for organic EL (Electro Luminescence) displays, field emission displays (FEDs), biochips, etc. The present invention can also be applied to a liquid ejecting apparatus that ejects a liquid containing a bio-organic matter used for manufacturing, a sample ejecting apparatus as a precision pipette, and the like.

D5. Modification 5:
FIG. 21 is a cross-sectional view illustrating a schematic configuration of the printer 10 in a state where the upper housing 30 is closed in a modified example. In the modification shown in FIG. 21, the installation mode of the ink pack 310 is different from the embodiment shown in FIG. That is, the embodiment shown in FIG. 2 employs a mode in which the ink pack 310 is fixed and installed on the holder 380 provided in the upper housing 30. However, in the modification shown in FIG. 380 is not provided, and a mode in which the ink pack 310 is installed in the upper housing 30 as a single unit is employed. Thus, the holder 380 is not necessarily used for installing the ink pack 310 in the upper housing 30, and the ink pack 310 can be directly placed in the upper housing 30.

  FIG. 22 is a cross-sectional view illustrating a schematic configuration of the printer 10 in a state in which the upper housing 30 is closed in a modified example. In the modification shown in FIG. 22, the shape and installation mode of the ink pack are different from those in the embodiment shown in FIG. That is, in the modification shown in FIG. 22, a box-shaped ink pack 310 is employed, and the ink pack 310 is directly placed in the upper housing 30 as in the modification shown in FIG. ing. Thus, the shape of the ink pack is not limited to the bag shape formed of the flexible sheet, and other shapes such as a box shape can be adopted.

  FIG. 23 is an explanatory diagram showing a schematic configuration of the printer 10 in a modified example. In the modification shown in FIG. 23, the installation mode of the ink pack 310 is different from the embodiment shown in FIG. That is, in the modification shown in FIG. 23, the ink pack 310 is not housed in the upper housing 30 and is disposed outside the printer 10. Also in the modification shown in FIG. 23, the pack port 60 of the ink pack 310 is connected to the ink supply unit 330 through the hole 32 provided in the upper housing 30. As described above, the ink pack 310 does not necessarily have to be stored in the upper housing 30 and may be disposed outside the printer 10.

  FIG. 24 is an explanatory diagram showing a schematic configuration of the printer 10 in a modified example. In the modification shown in FIG. 24, the ink supply mode is different from the embodiment shown in FIG. That is, in the modification shown in FIG. 24, the pack port 60 of the ink pack 310 is connected to the ink supply unit 330, and the tube 980 is installed between the pack port 60 and the ink tank 990 that stores ink. The ink in the ink tank 990 is supplied to the printing mechanism unit 50 via the tube 980, the pack port 60, and the ink supply unit 330. In the modification shown in FIG. 24, for example, after the ink in the ink pack 310 is used up, the ink pack 310 is removed leaving only the pack port 60 of the ink pack 310, and the tube 980 and the ink tank 990 are installed. Realized.

D6. Modification 6:
In the ink filling process (FIG. 18) in the third embodiment, the cleaning liquid (distribution ink) is filled in the ink supply system in the cleaning process (step S70). If the liquid does not contain a solid component, the cleaning liquid ( Other liquids other than the distribution ink) may be filled. The third initial state may be a state in which the recording head 810 is filled with a cleaning liquid (distribution ink) and the ink flow path is not filled with the cleaning liquid. The recording head 810 may not be filled with the cleaning liquid.

D7. Modification 7:
In the flowcharts (FIGS. 10 and 17) showing the ink filling process in the first embodiment and the second embodiment, the ink supply system cleaning process (steps S60 to S90 in FIG. 18) is not shown, but the first embodiment. Also in the ink filling process in the second embodiment, the same cleaning process is executed before the processes shown in FIGS. 10 and 17. However, in the cleaning process of the first and second embodiments, unlike the third embodiment, the cleaning liquid is discharged without being filled (see step S70 in FIG. 18). In addition, after the ink filling process in the first and second embodiments shown in FIGS. 10 and 17 is completed, so-called idle suction (steps S154 and 155 in FIG. 18) is executed as in the third embodiment. It may be done. In the first and second embodiments, the ink supply system is not filled with the cleaning liquid in the cleaning process, so that a relatively large amount of liquid is not discharged to the head cap 740. The remaining cleaning liquid is discharged by empty suction.

It is explanatory drawing which shows schematic structure of the printer 10 as a fluid ejecting apparatus in 1st Example of this invention. 2 is a cross-sectional view illustrating a schematic configuration of the printer 10 in a state where an upper housing 30 is closed. FIG. FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view illustrating a schematic configuration of the printer 10 in a state where an upper housing 30 is opened. 4 is a top view showing an internal configuration of the upper housing 30. FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view illustrating a schematic configuration of the printer 10 in a state where an upper housing 30 is closed. FIG. 3 is an explanatory diagram illustrating a configuration around a printing mechanism unit 50 of the printer 10. FIG. 3 is an explanatory diagram showing an internal configuration of a carriage 80. FIG. FIG. 10 is an explanatory diagram showing a state where a carriage 80 has moved to a position connectable to a head cap 740. FIG. 6 is an explanatory diagram showing a state in which a head cap 740 is lifted and connected to a carriage 80. 3 is a flowchart illustrating a flow of ink filling processing of the printer according to the first embodiment. It is a top view which shows the internal structure of the upper housing | casing 30 of the printer 10 in 2nd Example. 4 is an explanatory diagram schematically showing a configuration of a choke valve mechanism 900. FIG. It is S1-S1 sectional drawing in FIG. 4 is an explanatory diagram showing a configuration of a motor drive circuit included in a control unit. FIG. It is explanatory drawing which shows an example of the micro step drive signal of the stepping motor drive circuit. It is explanatory drawing which shows the drive timing of DC motor 910 for chokes. It is a flowchart which shows the flow of the ink filling process of the printer 10 in 2nd Example. It is a flowchart which shows the flow of the ink filling process of the printer 10 in 3rd Example. It is explanatory drawing which shows the inside of the upper housing | casing 30 in a modification. FIG. 9 is a cross-sectional view illustrating a schematic configuration of the printer 10 in a state in which an upper housing 30 is closed in a modified example. FIG. 9 is a cross-sectional view illustrating a schematic configuration of the printer 10 in a state in which an upper housing 30 is closed in a modified example. FIG. 9 is a cross-sectional view illustrating a schematic configuration of the printer 10 in a state in which an upper housing 30 is closed in a modified example. It is explanatory drawing which shows schematic structure of the printer 10 in a modification. It is explanatory drawing which shows schematic structure of the printer 10 in a modification.

Explanation of symbols

DESCRIPTION OF SYMBOLS 10 ... Printer 12 ... Paper feed tray 14 ... Output tray 20 ... Main body case 30 ... Upper case 32 ... Hole 40 ... Control part 42 ... Motor drive Circuit 43 ... DC motor drive circuit 44 ... DC motor drive circuit 45 ... Stepping motor drive circuit 50 ... Printing mechanism 60 ... Pack port 70 ... Maintenance mechanism 80 ... Carriage 302 ... Guide part 310 ... Ink pack 320 ... Supply needle 330 ... Ink supply part 332 ... Guard plate 333 ... Opening part 335 ... Hollow flow path 340 ... Supply tube 350 ... Rotating shaft 360 ... Lower housing 362 ... Holder guide 364 ... Holder auxiliary rib 370 ... Upper housing 373 ... engaging part 374 ... End auxiliary rib 376 .. Intermediate auxiliary rib 380 ... Holder 381 ... Inclined plate 382 ... Base part 383 ... Upper end part 384 ... Back side auxiliary 388 ... Fixing screw 410 ... Joint 420 ... Supporting part 510 ... Carriage motor 512 ... Timing belt 520 ... Guide rod 530 ... Platen 540 ... Paper feed motor 710. ..Vacuum pump 715 ... Vacuum tube 716 ... Branch 717 ... Branch tube 718 ... Branch tube 720 ... Base 722 ... Elevating motor 724 ... Transmission gear 726 ... Lead Screw 730 ... Elevating base 734 ... Biasing support 735 ... Biasing support 740 ... Head cap 741 ... Ink suction chamber 742 ... Connection port 744 ... Sponge 750 .. Attachment / detachment connection portion 760 ... wiper blade 810 ... recording head 812 ... nozzle 820 ... second carriage member 821 ... gas recovery chamber 822 ... downstream trap chamber 824 ... transmission wall 826 ... filter 830 ... third carry Member 834 ... Ink channel 836 ... Pressure regulating valve 838 ... Ink channel 840 ... Fourth carriage member 841 ... Gas recovery chamber 842 ... Upstream trap chamber 844 ... Permeation wall 846 ... Filter 850 ... Fifth carriage member 851 ... Decompression relay chamber 852 ... Hollow needle 859 ... Ink inlet 900 ... Choke valve mechanism 910 ... DC motor for choke 920. ..Gear group 930 ... Magnetic part 932 ... Valve 934 ... Spring 980 ... Tube 990 ... Ink tank

Claims (12)

  1. A fluid ejection device comprising:
    A fluid container for containing fluid;
    A fluid discharge section for discharging the fluid;
    A flow path forming part that forms a fluid flow path from the fluid containing part to the fluid discharge part;
    A valve mechanism capable of opening and closing the fluid flow path,
    Before using the first fluid ejecting apparatus after the fluid is accommodated in the fluid accommodating portion, at least a portion of the fluid flow path from the position of the fluid accommodating portion to the position of the valve mechanism is filled with the fluid. And a fluid ejection device in an initial state in which the valve mechanism closes the fluid flow path.
  2. The fluid ejection device according to claim 1,
    In the initial state, the fluid ejecting apparatus in which the fluid ejection unit is filled with a pre-use liquid that does not contain a solid component.
  3. The fluid ejecting apparatus according to claim 1 or 2,
    In the initial state, the fluid ejecting apparatus, wherein the pre-use liquid is filled in a portion of the fluid flow path other than the portion filled with the fluid.
  4. The fluid ejecting apparatus according to claim 2 or 3,
    The fluid ejecting apparatus, wherein the pre-use liquid is a liquid that does not include a color material as the solid component.
  5. The fluid ejection device according to any one of claims 1 to 4, further comprising:
    A suction means capable of sucking the inside of the fluid flow path on the fluid discharge part side from the position of the valve mechanism;
    The initial state of the fluid ejection device is:
    (A) closing the fluid flow path by the valve mechanism;
    (B) generating a negative pressure in the fluid flow path on the fluid discharge part side from the position of the valve mechanism by suction by the suction means;
    (C) releasing the fluid channel closed by the valve mechanism;
    (D) after the fluid accommodated in the fluid accommodating portion is filled up to the position of the valve mechanism of the fluid channel, the fluid channel is closed by the valve mechanism. The fluid ejecting apparatus.
  6. The fluid ejection device according to claim 5,
    The initial state of the fluid ejection device is further
    (E) Before the step (a), the fluid ejecting apparatus is formed by a method including a step of filling the fluid channel with the pre-use liquid and connecting the fluid accommodating portion to the fluid channel. .
  7. The fluid ejection device according to claim 1,
    The fluid ejecting apparatus, wherein the fluid ejecting unit is not filled with the fluid before the first use of the fluid ejecting apparatus after the fluid is accommodated in the fluid accommodating part.
  8. The fluid ejection device according to any one of claims 1 to 7,
    A plurality of the fluid containing portions containing the fluid;
    The fluid ejecting apparatus, wherein the flow path forming unit forms a plurality of the fluid flow paths corresponding to the plurality of fluid storage units.
  9. The fluid ejection device according to any one of claims 1 to 8, further comprising:
    A carriage that moves in a state in which the fluid discharge unit is mounted;
    The fluid ejecting apparatus, wherein the fluid accommodating portion is disposed at a position different from the position on the carriage.
  10. The fluid ejection device according to any one of claims 1 to 9,
    The fluid ejecting apparatus, wherein the fluid is liquid ink.
  11. A method of filling a fluid in a fluid ejection device, comprising:
    The fluid ejecting apparatus includes:
    A fluid container for containing fluid;
    A fluid discharge section for discharging the fluid;
    A flow path forming part that forms a fluid flow path from the fluid containing part to the fluid discharge part;
    A valve mechanism capable of opening and closing the fluid flow path;
    Suction means for sucking the fluid flow path on the fluid discharge part side from the position of the valve mechanism,
    The method
    (A) closing the fluid flow path by the valve mechanism;
    (B) generating a negative pressure in the fluid flow path on the fluid discharge part side from the position of the valve mechanism by suction by the suction means;
    (C) releasing the fluid channel closed by the valve mechanism;
    (D) closing the fluid flow path by the valve mechanism after the fluid accommodated in the fluid accommodation part is filled up to the position of the valve mechanism of the fluid flow path.
  12. The method of claim 11, further comprising:
    (E) before the step (a), filling the fluid flow path with a pre-use liquid that does not contain a solid component, and connecting the fluid containing part to the fluid flow path.
JP2007318034A 2007-07-20 2007-12-10 Fluid ejecting apparatus, and fluid filling method in same Withdrawn JP2009045916A (en)

Priority Applications (2)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
JP2007189068 2007-07-20
JP2007318034A JP2009045916A (en) 2007-07-20 2007-12-10 Fluid ejecting apparatus, and fluid filling method in same

Applications Claiming Priority (3)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
JP2007318034A JP2009045916A (en) 2007-07-20 2007-12-10 Fluid ejecting apparatus, and fluid filling method in same
CN 200810133565 CN101348041B (en) 2007-07-20 2008-07-17 Fluid ejecting apparatus and fluid filling method of fluid ejecting apparatus
US12/176,771 US8128210B2 (en) 2007-07-20 2008-07-21 Fluid ejecting apparatus and fluid filling method of fluid ejecting apparatus

Publications (1)

Publication Number Publication Date
JP2009045916A true JP2009045916A (en) 2009-03-05

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Family Applications (1)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
JP2007318034A Withdrawn JP2009045916A (en) 2007-07-20 2007-12-10 Fluid ejecting apparatus, and fluid filling method in same

Country Status (1)

Country Link
JP (1) JP2009045916A (en)

Cited By (4)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
JP2010228288A (en) * 2009-03-27 2010-10-14 Brother Ind Ltd Inkjet printer
CN103347699A (en) * 2010-11-19 2013-10-09 多米诺印刷科学有限公司 Improvements in or relating to inkjet printers
JP2016190335A (en) * 2015-03-30 2016-11-10 セイコーエプソン株式会社 Printer
US10315428B2 (en) 2015-03-30 2019-06-11 Seiko Epson Corporation Printing device

Cited By (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
JP2010228288A (en) * 2009-03-27 2010-10-14 Brother Ind Ltd Inkjet printer
US8256863B2 (en) 2009-03-27 2012-09-04 Brother Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha Ink-jet printer
CN103347699A (en) * 2010-11-19 2013-10-09 多米诺印刷科学有限公司 Improvements in or relating to inkjet printers
JP2016190335A (en) * 2015-03-30 2016-11-10 セイコーエプソン株式会社 Printer
US10315428B2 (en) 2015-03-30 2019-06-11 Seiko Epson Corporation Printing device

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