Openprinter Wiki

Ink Based Print Head Possibilities[]

Home Fabricated[]

A home fabricated print head would require the builder to have a clean room, photolithography setup, sealed canister (ie vacuum chamber), single crystal semiconducting material and piezoelectric material. At this point in time, this would seem to be beyond the grasp of most people wanting to make their own printer.

Commercially Available[]

It is possible to purchase print heads for large format printer like the one here. However, the price of this type of printhead will probably cause most people to go a bit quezy, even if they do last a long time. They also take a wide variety of different inks, this may be of benefit to some.

Repurposed (Hacked)[]

It may be most cost effective to reuse an existing printhead or purchase a new printhead from a brand name printer and repurpose it to fit a DIY printer. This does lead to one question however, since the printhead is usually the first thing to fail on a printer, why would you destroy a working printer just to make another one? Saying that, it would not be a complete loss to buy a cartridge with a built in printhead and scavenge it for parts at the expense of slightly lower print quality. ( says: this last one will be the way I will be going, keeps the price of the printer down without breaking a working printer, I think, for a beta version, this would be more then adequate).

i agree with this sentiment.

but instead of re-puposing a working printer to pull a printhead, it's possible to purchase printhead/ink resevoir components from aftermarket inkjet cartridge resellers.

basing a first gen/beta printer on an existing printhead is not a bad idea.


So the next step would to be to work out how a printer talks to these cartridges. I have an old F380 HP that takes the HP 22 but I wonder how long these cartridges will be manufactured for. Would it be better to get a printer that takes the new round of cartridges (like the HP 60 cartridge) so that the openprinter doesn't need to be redesigned as soon?

On a side note. Should we consider moving all discussions to the forum section and only edit pages when decisions are made or designs/how-tos are posted. this way everything is kept in one spot.

Either that or use the discussion pages that accompany each article


Can anyone post some better quality photos of different print heads at different magnifications?

Here are a couple of pictures from a generic HP 22 cartridge (magenta printhead at 100x zoom and yellow at 200x). Sorry this is the best quality that I could get.

Generic HP 22 Magenta Print Head 100x

Generic HP 22 Yellow Print Head at 200x magnification