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Russell H.
Russell H., Printer and Office Tech
Category: Printers
Satisfied Customers: 9525
Experience:  11+ yrs experience, inkjets & lasers, from huge to portable
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I am attempting to print an address and return address on DL

Customer Question

I am attempting to print an address and return address on DL size envelope using an Epson XP-630 printer. I am using a Tap Forms Data Base on an iMac. My problem is that I get a vertical black band printed on the left side of the envelope measuring 104mm x 31mm in addition to the required data. Initially, this black band obscured part of the return address, however I have now moved the addresses to the right. While this has temporarily eased the problem, it obviously wastes a lot of expensive ink. Note that the data base preview of the printed envelope does not show this black band whisks leads me to believe it is a printer problem.
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Printers
Expert:  Russell H. replied 6 months ago.

Hi, thank you for contacting JustAnswer.com. My name is Russell. I will do my best to provide the right answer to your question.

When you print a full-size (or Letter size, 8 1/2 inches by 11 inches) page, does that line show up?

If it does not show up that way (and if that full page is not being printed from the Tap Forms Database), then you may have a problem with software, the Tap Forms database's print driver specifically in all likelihood, rather than with the printer.

Another test, is to run a one-page photocopy of an original placed face down on the glass sheet. If it also lacks a line, or has one, that is indicative in other ways.

Please try the two tests and let me know what the result is. And I will continue to advise you. Thanks.

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Hi Russell.Thanks for your response.I have tried the two test you suggested, using A4 sized paper, and neither produce the black mark evident on the DL size envelope.RegardsIan
Expert:  Russell H. replied 6 months ago.

Thanks for doing what I suggestd, Ian, glad to hear from you again.

So, if I understand you correctly, neither a plain photocopy nor a full-size print (from the Tap Forms Database? or not?) shows any line.

Considering that your printer is an inkjet-type printer, not a laser printer/copier, that's not too surprising. Laser-type printers are more prone to putting lines on things.

Next question: since the lines show up on envelopes,

A: how many envelopes do you print at a time, i.e. how many in the blank paper stack?

B: do you flatten out the envelopes, to get 'air' out of them, before printing on them? that could possibly be what you need to do in this case. The line on the envelope may be from an excessively bulgy envelope, with air pocket(s) inside it, scraping against the printhead or other inky part, and ink rubbing off onto it.

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
The envelopes are very flat with no air contained. I initially load 10 ( which is the printer makers recommendation), but the "band" appears right down to when only one envelope is left.Note that my use of the word "band" may have been a bit misleading though I did state its dimension. Perhaps, more correctly, it would have been better to have called it a "rectangle". The rectangle, 104 x 31 mm, is filled solid black, has perfect straight sides all round and is positioned evenly between top and bottom edges of the envelope (I.e. There is approx 3mm white space top and bottom of the rectangle.
Expert:  Russell H. replied 6 months ago.

Thanks for the good accurate description of the 'band'/rectangle.

It sounds as if the printer is doing that rectangle deliberately, not just scraping off ink onto the envelope as I rather thought at first.

Here's another test to distinguish whether it is from the database, or is from some other cause:

1: print anything much, onto a blank envelope. Just one. Print from any application that prints text.

2: see if any sort of rectangle comes out on it.

- if not, then the Tap Forms db. is producing it somehow - deliberately.

- if so, then we have a clue that it is not just the Tap Forms db. producing it (as I suspect it is.)

Have you checked a Print Preview from the Tap Forms db.? the settings for printing in that program also?

There might be some sort of 'bar code data' setting in it, perhaps, e.g. when you print from it to an envelope, when you do envelope printing? without actual data input to it, the 'postal bar code' setting might perhaps produce a solid bar? but I am guessing at this point, for I do not know enough about Tap Forms to do more than guess.

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Russell H.Printing from MS Word onto the same envelope does not produce the black rectangle nor is there any sign of it in the Tap Forms DB preview. i.e. When I hit the "print" tab in Tap Forms, no black rectangle appears on the screen.
Expert:  Russell H. replied 5 months ago.

OK. Something is wrong in your Tap Forms DB software then.

I suggest going through all Tap Forms' settings for printing, for anything extraneous and disabling it. That it does not show up in Print Preview means, perhaps, that Tap Forms is not complying with all the rules, and is ordering something / sending something to the printer, that it's not confessing to in the Print Preview function.