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Data Tables Explained

In several of the Professors lectures you will see data tables similar to the one below.


Cartridge number


OEM full weight

Empty weight from printer

True empty weight

OEM Fill

Ink delivered

OCP Ink ref

































This particular table relates to Epson MkII cartridges.

The object of a cartridge data table is to show the parameters you need to be aware of when remanufacturing the cartridges detailed in the data table.

There are a number of variables and extrapolations that might be contained in a data table. These vary according to the purpose for which the table was produced.

In this example this table was produced to give guidance on the contents of the cartridge, and information required for refilling the cartridge.

Although not shown on this table, you might need to know the amount of residual ink in a cartridge after the printer has determined it is empty. In this example, the information can be worked out by subtracting the true empty weight from the empty from printer weight. The answer is around 5gms.

If you want to know why this is important you will not find the answer here. That is the subject of another lecture. Some might claim or think that this is the margin of error for refilling the cartridge. NOT TRUE….THERE IS NO MARGIN.

So to continue,

The CARTRIDGE NUMBER is the manufacturers designated cartridge number.

The COLOUR is the colour of the ink in the cartridge.

OEM FULL WEIGHT is the weight of a BRAND NEW genuine cartridge, unwrapped, but in this instance with the seals intact. The seals are left intact as they are punctured when installed in the printer, and the whole of the seal is still part of the cartridge when it is removed as empty.

Empty from printer weight is, as you might expect the weight of the empty cartridge when it is removed from the printer. In this instance, the values are the average weight of a sample of between 15 to 25 empties. This information is important to you. Not only does it give you an indication of what an empty cartridge should weigh before you start to process it, this information also gives you a yardstick to refer to when a customer claims it has run out prematurely, and brings back a cartridge that is spot on the empty weight.

It is amazing what some customers will try, and the lengths to which they will go to get a freebie.

You know that it is the chip on this cartridge type that determines when the cartridge is empty. If that cartridge is around the printer empty weight, then he has used up the full amount of ink. No ifs or buts. He has had his full monies worth and that is the end of it. Unless you gave him an empty cartridge in the first place, hardly likely.

If however, the weight is noticeably outside of the range, then most probably the chip has failed. He is right, so give him a new one.

Let’s face it, nobody likes a shyster, but genuine failures are a part of our business, as too with the OEM’s. Good aftermarket support wins customers.

True empty weight is the actual weight of the cartridge when it is totally empty and drained of all ink. This is not something you want to find out for yourself. It is messy and often means destroying a valuable empty to find out. Also there are several factors that relate to obtaining this data. Often you need specialist and expensive equipment to get the correct figure. For instance, the Professor’s scales are accurate to one one-hundredth of a gram. It’s a lot easier to leave this to the Professor, you can be sure he has got it right.

OEM Fill is the actual amount of ink the OEM really puts in the cartridge, and is the amount if ink in the cartridge when it is brand new. This is very important, and you should take note that what the manufacturer claims are the contents in a new cartridge, and what there actually is ARE TWO DIFFERENT THINGS.

Normally the OEM displays not the actual fill of the cartridge as the contents, but the amount of ink that the cartridge is designed to deliver. And more importantly, you cannot properly remanufacture a cartridge if you do not know the correct amount of ink to put into it.

Professor Promax can only give the following as an opinion, not as a claim of fact. Firstly OEM’s do it to mislead the remanufacturer into under-filling cartridges so they can claim with a modicum of accuracy that remanufactured cartridges do not give the same yield as genuine cartridges. Secondly, it is to protect themselves from trading standards. You cannot be prosecuted for putting more product into a container when a contents statement on the container or packaging is lower than the fill. That is unless the “e” mark is used. Of course, none of them do use it.

Ink delivered is the actual amount of ink that the printer has used from the cartridge. In the Epson MkII cartridge this is controlled by the chip. The printer driver makes a calculation based on the number of times the head fires one of its jets. This volume is measured in pica-litres per jet activation. Once all these minute pica-litres add up to the amount of ink the cartridges are designed to deliver, the chip signals that the cartridge is empty, and effectively shuts the down the printer until the cartridge is changed. Whilst this calculation is a guesstimate, it is never far out of line with the truth. However think about that residual ink figure. Yes, you’re right, that’s for another lecture.

OCP ink reference is there to help you find the correct ink for the cartridge, which has been specially formulated for that cartridge. Without doubt, OCP make the finest aftermarket inks in the world. There is no such thing as a universal ink. Please, please, the Professor knows there are ink suppliers who claim to have universal inks. THEY LIE. The Professor feels another lecture coming on.

22nd February 2007

prof promax
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