New Zebra ZT400 Series Videos

As we mentioned in our previous blog post, Midrange Repair & Parts has been creating videos showing various procedures on the Zebra ZT400 series of printers. New Videos should come up at least once a week, and as it has been a little over a month since our last post, there are 5 new videos already posted on our YouTube Channel.

New Zebra ZT400 Videos

Drive Motor Replacement

Printhead Replacement

Platen Replacement

Platen Coupler Replacement

Ribbon and Media Calibration

If there is a procedure you would like to see, please leave a comment or email ecommerce@themrpsolution.com and make a request, we can try and get the procedure filmed for you as soon as possible. Make sure to check back on our channel every week for new videos, and Like share and subscribe to it so you wont miss anything.

The MRP Solution’s New Video Series

The MRP Solution is not only a supplier of new and high quality used parts for printers, PCs, and other IT hardware, we are also a supplier of technical support to all of out customers.

In an effort to make support more accessible and easier to find, we have occasionally posted videos of common service procedures. Today we are proud to announce a new series of videos focusing on the Zebra ZT400 series of printers. The first video is a replacement procedure for the power supply of the printer. The videos to follow over the coming weeks will include common replacement and calibration procedures.

Please check the video out HERE, and be sure to like and comment on the video, and subscribe to our YouTube channel to see all the latest updates to the series!

Proper care of handheld devices.

Here are a few tips for taking care of cell phones, game systems, and other handheld devices.

Always keep the dust covers closed. Most handheld devices have an IP rating, which indicates dust & waterproof status. The higher the number the higher the protection against dust and water getting in. Some have a separate dust cover/protective case. That rating doesn’t matter if the cover is not used. This can void the warranty. Use a case.  It may not offer 100% protection, but some protection is better than none.

Do not abuse the device.  Some devices cost over $1000 dollars even though they may not look like it. While these are portable devices, that doesn’t mean they can withstand being dropped onto a hard surface, or tossed around. The better you treat the device, the longer it will last without needing service.

Keep the devices clean. Even though the device may be in a case, if there is something on the screen, it can cause the device to misregister a touch, which can cause problems. Remember to apply cleaning solution to the cloth or paper towel, and never directly to the screen.

If your device does become damaged or no longer functions the way it should, MRP offers repair services on a wide variety of different handheld device types and brands.  Please contact us at (708) 597-4222 for a quote. We are authorized service centers for Bluebird and Point Mobile.

One of the many handheld devices we service is the Bluebird EF500.  Below are the specifications and some of the configurations. There are also ruggedized versions that are not listed here.

Bluebird EF500

Specifications:

Brand:   Bluebird

Model: EF500

Type:     Rugged PDA / Handheld

Standard Warranty:        1 year warranty against manufacturer defects

Extended Warranty /

Service contracts:            Possible

For full warranty options please contact your sales representative.

Physical Characteristics

Dimensions:       155,6 x 77,5 x 16,5 mm

Weight:                260 grams (330 grams with Extended battery)

Keypad:               On-Screen

SIM Slot:              2 SIM Slots

SAM Slot:            1 SAM Slot

SD Card Slot:      Expandable with Micro SD card (Up to 32GB)

Interface:            Micro SD card slot / Micro USB 2.0

Standard Battery:            3.200 mAh

Extended Battery:           6.400 mAh

Hot swappable: Yes

Display

Display: 5″

Screen Resolution:          1280 x 720 HD WXGA

Touch:  Capacitive touch (Wet and Glove touch supported)

Gorilla Glass:      Corning® Gorilla® Glass 3 with native damage resistance™ (NDR)

Performance

Processor:           Quad Core 1.2 GHz Processor

Operating system:           Android 6.0

Android 5.1

Windows 10 IoT Mobile Enterprise

RAM Memory:  2 GB

ROM Storage Capacity:  8 GB Flash (Optional: 16 GB)

Communication

Modem:              4G

WLAN:  802.11 a/b/g/n/d/h/i

Bluetooth:          4.0 LE

Push to Talk:      Yes

GPS:      A-GPS, GLONASS, BeiDou

Data Capture

Barcode Scanner:             1D/2D Barcode Scanner

Front Camera:   1.3 Megapixel

Rear Camera:     13.0 Megapixel

RFID:     NFC

Smart Card Reader:         Optional

Fingerprint Scanner:       Optional

Configurations:

EF500-ANLUL

Android 6.x(Marshmallow), 802.11 a/b/g/n/d/h/i, 5″ HD LCD, 2GB/16GB, BT 4.0 LE, Contactless Card Reader, 1D/2D imager(LED Aimer),

EF500-A4LNL

Android 6.x(Marshmallow), LTE(North America), 802.11 a/b/g/n/d/h/i, AGPS, 8MP Camera, 5″ HD LCD, 2GB/16GB, BT 4.0 LE, Contactless Card Reader, 1D/2D imager(LED Aimer), 1 SIM, Standard Battery(3200mAh) 

EF500-WNLE

Windows 10 IoT Mobile Enterprise, 802.11 a/b/g/n/d/h/i, 13MP Camera, 2.0M Front Camera, 5″ HD LCD, 2GB/16GB, BT 4.0 LE, 12-pin connector, Standard Battery(3200mAh)              

EF500-ANLG

Android 5.1(Lollipop), 802.11 a/b/g/n/d/h/i, AGPS, 13MP Camera, 1.3M Front Camera, 5″ HD LCD, 2GB/8GB, BT 4.0 LE, Contactless Card Reader, 1D/2D imager         

EF500-ANLHC

Android 6.0,HEALTHCARE, 802.11 a/b/g/n/d/h/i, AGPS, 13MP Camera, 1.3M Front Camera, 5″ HD LCD, 2GB/8GB, BT 4.0 LE, Contactless Card Reader, 1D/2D imager, Standard Battery(3200mAh)       

EF500-ANLT

Android 6.0(Marshmallow), 802.11 a/b/g/n/d/h/i, AGPS, 13MP Camera, 1.3M Front Camera, 5″ HD LCD, 2GB/16GB, BT 4.0 LE, Contactless Card Reader, 1D/2D imager(LED Aimer), 1 SAM, Standard Battery(3200mAh)          

EF500-ANLJH

Android 6.0(Marshmallow), 802.11 a/b/g/n/d/h/i, AGPS, 13MP Camera, 1.3M Front Camera, 5″ HD LCD, 2GB/16GB, BT 4.0 LE, Contactless Card Reader, 1D/2D imager(LED Aimer), Extended Battery(6400mAh), Handstrap

EF500-WNLG

Win 10 IOT Mobile Enterprise, 802.11 a/b/g/n/d/h/i, AGPS, 13MP Camera, 1.3M Front Camera, 5″ HD LCD, 2GB/8GB, BT 4.0 LE, Contactless Card Reader, 1D/2D imager

EF500-A4LD

Android 5.1(Lollipop), LTE, 802.11 a/b/g/n/d/h/i, AGPS, 13MP Camera, 1.3M Front Camera, 5″ HD LCD, 2GB/8GB, BT 4.0 LE, Contactless Card Reader, 1D/2D imager

EF500-A4LQ

Android 6.0(Marshmallow), LTE, 802.11 a/b/g/n/d/h/i, AGPS, 13MP Camera, 1.3M Front Camera, 5″ HD LCD, 2GB/16GB, BT 4.0 LE, Contactless Card Reader, 1D/2D imager(LED Aimer), 2 SIM, 1 SAM, Standard Battery(3200mAh)               

EF500-A4LQH

Android 6.0(Marshmallow), LTE, 802.11 a/b/g/n/d/h/i, AGPS, 13MP Camera, 1.3M Front Camera, 5″ HD LCD, 2GB/16GB, BT 4.0 LE, Contactless Card Reader, 1D/2D imager(LED Aimer), 2 SIM, 1 SAM, Standard Battery(3200mAh), includes Handstrap        

EF500-A4LH

Android 5.1(Lollipop), LTE, 802.11 a/b/g/n/d/h/i, AGPS, 13MP Camera, 2.0M Front Camera, 5″ HD LCD, 2GB/16GB, BT 4.0 LE, Contactless Card Reader, 1D/2D imager(LED Aimer), 2 SIM, 1 SAM, 12-pin connector, Extended Battery(6400mAh)          

EF500-W4LF

Windows 10 IoT Mobile Enterprise, LTE, 802.11 a/b/g/n/d/h/i, AGPS, 13MP Camera with Flash, 5″ HD LCD, 2GB/8GB, BT 4.0 LE, Contactless Card Reader, 1D/2D imager            

The Importance of Established Processes in Small Business

As a small business, you may have started with only a few employees and everything you did was manageable. You probably handled service calls and inventory on your own with little to no issues. But as your business grows, and you hire additional personnel, managing the everyday tasks can suddenly become complicated. You may have many field service techs, a few inventory clerks, several office administrators, etc. You’re likely to find everyone has their own way of performing the same task, and that can often become a problem.

John may receive 10 purchase orders and process them individually, receiving one and immediately moving the parts to stock. But Bill may receive 10 purchases orders and not put any parts away until the end of the day. If you look in your inventory how do you know where to find the parts? In their stock locations or on Bill’s desk? Now is the time to establish documented processes for your everyday tasks to ensure consistency.
Established processes can ensure that every employee performs a given task in the same manner, following the same steps, and achieving the same result. They will improve accuracy and efficiency and overall can streamline your business operations.

Inventory Management Process

The first step is to identify the tasks that require an established process. Obviously, there are many things you do every day that don’t require a process. It won’t make any difference if you turn on your computer and then hang up your coat while the person next to you hangs up their coat and then turns on their computer. However, if you’re both scheduling service calls, both of you should be following the same steps to ensure accuracy. As a rule of thumb, a process should be established if more than one person performs the same task or if a task affects more than one person or department. For example, you would want a process for your field service techs to follow when performing and documenting service calls to ensure a customer always has a consistent service. You’d also want a process for your lone inventory tech to follow when receiving products, as the status of inventory affects the sales department as well as the accounting department. Every business will have different processes to document.

Once you’ve identified your tasks that require established processes it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get down to business. Start with a quick overview of what the task is attempting to accomplish. Are you receiving inventory, performing a service call, filing documents? Let’s say we’re having a tech perform a service call. What are the general steps that need to be performed? The tech may have to review their calls for the day to establish an efficient route, contact the customer to establish a time to arrive, gather documentation for the equipment to be worked on, and possibly request maintenance parts from inventory. Once on site they’ll need to discuss the problem with the customer, test and diagnose the equipment being serviced, order parts, schedule a return visit, and log the work they performed either on paper or in their service program. Write these down as your primary steps to be further analyzed. Review them and if needed, rearrange the order of steps always keeping efficiency and accuracy in mind.

Next, you’ll need to look at the primary steps and break them down further into secondary steps. Let’s use the example of the first step being the tech must review their calls to establish an efficient route. Can this be broken down further? Are there additional factors that affect the establishment of an efficient route? Does a customer have restricted business hours? Is the customer in a critical situation where they need to be serviced first? Write down the individual steps and determine their priority. A customer with a critical situation would take precedence over a customer who closes in the afternoon. If there’s not a critical call then perhaps the first call would be the one furthest from the techs starting location, working their way back towards home as the day progresses. Write down these secondary steps and if needed, rearrange their order. Repeat this process for every primary step until they’ve all been broken down into secondary steps.

You should now have your basic process written out in a somewhat orderly rough draft. Review the process and at each step ask yourself:
• Is this the most efficient way to perform this step?
• Is any other person or department affected by this step?
• Does performing this step at this time cause additional steps or questions?

After you’ve gone over everything it’s time to put it to the initial test. Perform the task following the steps you’ve written out. Watch for problem areas where perhaps there’s an inefficiency or a misstep. You may find you need to add steps, remove steps, or change the order of steps. Every time you make a change, rewrite the process and test it from the beginning again. Continue to test and change the process until you’re certain you’ve made it as efficient and accurate as possible with the minimal chance of error.

At this point, you’ll want to officially document the process. There are multiple ways to do this using numbered steps in a document or a spreadsheet, or you can create a flowchart to document the process. The flowchart is my personal favorite. They’re logical in that you move from one block to another. Your path through the flowchart can change by asking a question but will always move forward to some type of solution. Variables can take you to a different flowchart to perform a separate task and then return you to the original flowchart to complete the process. Whichever method you choose, document your entire process and then move it to field testing.

Gather the necessary personnel to discuss the new process. Emphasize the importance of having established procedures and ask them for feedback and suggestions on how the process can be improved. You’ll have some employees that will make great suggestions and some not so great suggestions. It’s important they follow the process as documented to help in identifying problem areas. Review any suggestions they present and decide if it makes sense to implement. You most likely will not be able to make everyone happy and utilize all their suggestions. Some people will have to change the way they do things. The bottom line is to establish a procedure that is efficient and will work for everyone.

Once you’ve finished refining the process it’s time to create the final established process document. Meet with the necessary personnel again to review the document. Identify every step and explain why the process is being done this way. Make sure every person gets their own copy and if needed have them sign for it.

You’ll need to follow up for a few weeks to monitor the process and confirm the process is being followed by everyone correctly. If possible, document the effect the process has on your business in general. Are you more efficient? Do your employees have more time on their schedule?

Established documented processes can take the complication out of daily business tasks.

Desktop Impact Printing With the FP5000

While most simple print jobs are handled by commodity inkjet printers, or small office/workgroup laser printers, there still exists a need for a heavy duty impact printer in situations which require one or more of the following:

  • Multi part forms
  • High duty cycle
  • Continuous operation
  • Industrial operation

If you have a multipart form, without impact, nothing will make it past the first layer of the form. Most inkjet and laser printers are too costly to run hundreds or thousands of pages through a day, and are not built for that kind of 24/7 activity. They also tend to fail in industrial environments like factories, docks, warehouses, etc.

If any of these are a concern, impact printing is cheaper, more durable, has a higher duty cycle, and longer lifespan. If you are interested in a desktop form factor solution for your impact printer needs, check out the Printek FP-5000 series printers.

Printek FP5000

FormsPro 5000 Series Printers

The PRINTEK® FormsPro 5000 series printrs gives you unmatched reliability and the best in multipart forms printing. Capable of handling heavy workloads, and a host of standard and optional connectivity choices, along with exceptional print speeds, the FormsPro 5000 delivers mission critical printing that keeps your print jobs on time and on budget.

The FormsPro 5000 delivers print solutions in the harshest of environments and gives users an easy to navigate control panel which make it perfect in industrial settings. All this makes printing less labor intense without sacrificing performance.

The FormsPro 5000 Series printers can solve your toughest printing problems.

With the FormsPro Series you’ll print with greater legibility and unsurpassed reliability.

The FormsPro 5000 Series Features:

  • Fast draft speeds up to 900 CPS, which can print a typical 1,000-character document in less than 5 seconds.
  • Zero Tear for no wasted forms.
  • FP5000 has a single set of tractors, while the FP5002 is set up with 2-tractors providing for loading of 2 different forms.
  • Auto-Gap feature adjusts the print head according to form thickness.
  • Store up to 8 different forms layouts on the printer.
  • Easy forms loading with straight-up paper path eliminates the problem of forms buckling and jamming

FormsPro 5000 has a “Heavy Forms” setting to provide for increased readability on thick forms and multi-part forms.

Print Modes
  • 900 cps
  • 640 cps
  • 180 cps
  • up to 360 x 360 dpi
Character Matrix
  • HSQ: 12 x 8 half space matrix at 12.0 cpi
  • NLQ: 24 x 18 half space matrix at 10.0 cpi
  • LQ: 24 x 36 half space matrix at 10.0 cpi
Print Head    

   24 needle (12 needle parallel array)

Character Sets
  • HS Draft, Draft, Courier, Roman, Sans Serif, Prestige, Script, OCR-A/B
Character Spacing
  • 5, 6, 7.5, 8.6, 10, 12, 15, 17.1, 20 characters per inch
Line Length
  • 13.6 inches (136 Columns @ 10 cpi)
Line Spacing
  • 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 12 lpi
Paper Width
  • 3 to 16.5 inches width, 3 to 22 inch length
Paper Loading & Forms
  • Front loading, Rear Loading (5002 Model only)
  • Front 1 to 5 copies
  • Rear: 1 to 3 copies (5002 Model) 0.025″ max thickness
Power Requirements
  • Auto-switching Voltage: 100 – 250 VAC
  • Frequency: 50 to 60 Hz
  • 60 Watt printing: 18 Watt Power Save
Standard Interfaces
  • Parallel Bi-Directional, Ethernet 10/100 Mbit
Software Controls
  • Epson LQ-2550, Epson LQ-2180, Epson FX, IBM Proprinter xl24e, IBM Proprinter xl24e+AGM, MTPL, Genicom ANSI, 23 Industrial Barcodes, or Basic Postnet and Intelligent Mail Barcodes
Physical Specifications
  • 24.5 x 17 x 11
  • 19 kg
Reliability
  • MTBF – 12,500 hours
  • Print Head Life: 750 million characters
  • Warranty: 1 year Return to Depot

Zebra Thermal Printer Print Quality Troubleshooting

There are a few common issues/repairs on the Zebra thermal printers. The printhead and platen are both parts that wear out with use and can be damaged by well-intentioned but uninformed end users and improper maintenance.

One of the most common things to come across my bench is a platen that has been cut up by an end user removing media with a razor blade. Never use a razor blade to cut labels off of the machine. Another common issue with platens is uneven wear across the platen due to using media that is not the full width of the platen. This can lead to poor print quality due to uneven pressure across the printhead.

The easiest issue to diagnose is a cut platen, even if a cut is small it can lead to voids in print as the cut can cause a loss of pressure at the print line. To check for cuts on the platen remove labels from the machine and perform a visual inspection on the platen by rotating it manually (while the printer is turned off). If you are not sure if there is a cut or just a mark on the platen, apply pressure with a fingertip and drag your finger perpendicular to the mark, if it is a cut you should feel it open up under your fingertip.

To determine if you have uneven wear on your platen, open the printhead and remove the labels. Simply place a fingertip on one end of the platen, and lightly rub your finger from left to right, and back again, if you feel anything that feels like a ridge or bump, then odds are you have uneven wear on your platen.

It is also possible for your platen to wear out from use without a ridge or obvious physical signs of wear. If you find yourself adjusting the toggle pressure on the printhead, or turning your darkness up, it may indicate that the platen is worn down.

If any of these conditions are met in your printer, it is necessary to replace the platen, as the printhead may be damaged, and print quality will be affected. For instructions on replacing the platen, please check out the video we have on our YouTube channel.

Printheads and print quality issues are also a common issue on thermal printers. It is common for a user to buy a printer that has a wider print area than the media the user needs. When this happens, it is possible for the edge of the narrower media to cause wear on the printhead. It is also common for wear to occur when the printhead toggle pressure is too high, or there is damage to the platen.

Wear mark on a thermal printhead.

The first step in diagnosing this is to clean the printhead. Simply take a small amount of rubbing alcohol on a paper towel, and wipe from left to right until the paper towel stops picking up ink from the printhead. Cleaning the printhead may solve minor print quality issues. The most obvious signs of wear are dead dots on the printhead, but often there are visual signs of wear as well, such as wear spots in the conformal coating of the print element. These visual cues can be obscured by ink buildup on the printhead, so be sure to clean it with a paper towel and rubbing alcohol before the inspection. Also, be sure to clean the printhead any time you swap out the ribbon or media, and any time you make contact with the print line of the printhead, as oils on the skin can reduce printhead life.

If you have dead dots or wear on your printhead, they can be replaced, however, a trained technician is recommended for this job, as the printhead may require mechanical alignment/adjustments to ensure proper print quality. 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact MRP for more details.

RETAIL, TRANSPORTATION, AND MANUFACTURING ARE KEY TO THERMAL PRINT’S HOT FUTURE


The global thermal print market reached a total of $35.51 billion value at end-user level sales in 2018. The market is now forecast to expand at a rate of 5.0% compound annual growth rate through to 2023 – yielding a total market value of $45.39 billion in that year. The future success of thermal print will rely on new opportunities and market potential in a few key applications:

  • Retail
  • Transport
  • Manufacturing

Together, there three segments account for over $22.5 Billion (retail prices), 63% of the worldwide market, and will account for the majority of value growth across 2018-2023.

Retail

The retail industry is the largest end user of thermal printing technology. Specialist point-of-sale (POS) printers, designed for delivery of transaction receipts, mostly to consumers are common. Receipt paper is direct thermal media. The industry uses both manned check-out, and increasingly, automated self-check-out systems, with built in receipt printers.

E-commerce trade is disrupting retail, diminishing some traditional markets, such as POS receipts, as transactions move to an online world with electronic payment. In response, leading physical retailers, such as Walmart, Kohl’s, and Sainsbury’s, are developing their own e-commerce systems. These rely heavily on thermal print solutions. Customer orders are tracked using thermally printed barcode labels throughout the retailers own logistics chains, and thermally printed bin tags for customer store pickup systems were introduced in 2017, as a way to compete with the likes of Amazon. Also, demand for card printing continues to grow as stores develop more loyalty card systems for customers, and multi-retailer gift cards.

New developments in direct thermal media with greater outdoor capability will enter the space over the next few years. This creates a more flexible mobile situation as thermal printers are typically smaller than a portable inkjet printer. More kiosk type printers will be placed in the future, particularly in the aisles rather than check-outs, to provide more customer engagement opportunities

Transport

The transportation and logistics industry (e.g. airlines, distribution, mail, package and freight delivery, railways, etc.), represent the fastest growing application for thermal printing. This industry was one of the early adopters of barcode technology for functions like airline baggage tracking, and shipping packages with delivery giants UPS, DHL, TNT and FedEx.

Printer placement in delivery services is close to saturation in developed markets, but there is a major upsurge in the use of mobile printers for labelling and re-labelling, delivery notes for consumers, and delivery information. The use of postal services for last-mile delivery in North America and other regions is creating some new printer placements and label usages.

Forecasted changes in this sector include the increased use of security features in transportation ticketing to reduce fraud, a reduction in the need for near-infrared readable direct thermal for package delivery; smart labels for trucking of temperature-sensitive foods and pharmaceuticals; and increased use of QR and 2D codes for more trace data.

Manufacturing

Manufacturing is the second largest market for thermal printers and associated supplies, with combined revenues of $7.55 billion in 2018. This is divided between $1.7 billion in printers and $5.85 billion in supplies. Thermal printing is used in factory settings for industries as diverse as beverages, aerospace, and consumer electronics.

Barcode printers represent 64.2% of the total printer demand in 2018; and are standard fixtures in European, Japanese, and North American factories. Most of the growth in this segment in 2018-2023 will be in Asia-Pacific, which is becoming the global manufacturing center, where the use of barcode applications is only partially saturated.

The manufacturing industry is moving to mobile work forces in many areas like warehousing, inventory control, and parts picking. This has seen a tremendous increase in the placement of mobile printers, which can be either belt mounted on production personnel, or truck mounted on pallet trucks such as the Printek and TSC line. In all cases, it is usually a complete system (printer, scanner, microcomputer or smart device), which is wirelessly linked to the host system for data exchange.

The increasing use of 2D barcode labels for traceability of critical parts in the automobile industry that require high temperature durability is also an ideal fit for thermal transfer printing. One of the leading manufacturers in this area is Printronix Auto ID. Technologies that will grow in this segment will come from direct laser imaging, which will remove the need for a pressure-sensitive adhesive on the label, and new systems from Ricoh that can create rewritable bin tag labels for machine parts.

Zebra ZE500 Series Print Engine

Have you ever had to replace a drive belt on a print engine? Did you need as many tools as a car repair shop?  Well, put your rolling toolbox away, and take a look the new ZE500 print engine from Zebra!

ZE500 print engines were designed to keep mission-critical print-and-apply applications operating with no interruptions. Built with the customer in mind and leveraging customer research, the design focuses on ease of use, integration, and servicing. The ZE500 series takes an innovative approach to OEM print engines where ease of service is key to the design philosophy.

Downtime costs money. Loss of productivity, late shipments, and ruined job scheduling are just a few of the issues that come up when print engines go offline. The ZE500 mechanical design simplifies and shortens maintenance and consumable replacement time – dramatically reducing downtime in your mission-critical print-and-apply application. A quick-change modular drive system and wide-open printhead makes cleaning and replacement simple, and reduces printer repair time.

Your mission critical print-and-apply applications need to operate, uninterrupted, 24/7. Sealed front panel buttons and electronics enclosure that are dust resistant, robust, fan-less construction which prevents debris from being drawn into the print engine, and an all metal construction ensures optimal long term performance, even in harsh conditions. The ZE500 is optimal for production lines, warehouses, shipping docks, and more. With the ability to print in nearly any orientation, adapting it to your operations is simplified as well.

For more information please call us at 708-597-4222, and check out the full list of features and options below.

www.themrpsolution.com

Standard Features

  • Available in right and left hand configurations
  • Resolution: 203 dpi (8 dots per mm); 300 dpi (12 dots per mm)
  • ZebraNet 10/100 Print Server (Internal)
  • Rotatable front panel display (0,180)
  • 16MB SDRAM memory, 64MB Flash Memory
  • Embedded ZebraLink WebView™and Alert features
  • Real Time Clock
  • Applicator interface – provides status and control signals for applicators
  • Communications via serial RS-232, IEEE 1284 bidirectional parallel interface with auto detect, and USB 2.0 port
  • Full function graphic front panel and large multilingual back-lit LCD display with user programmable password protection
  • Thin film print head with E3 Element Energy Equalizer
  • Dual media sensors, transmissive and reflective, selectable through software or front panel
  • ZPL or ZPL II programming language, selectable through software or front panel
  • XML-Enabled Printing – allows XML communications from today’s enterprise systems for barcode label printing
  • 32 bit 133 MHz RISC processor
  • Zebra printer driver for Windows 7, XP, Vista, 2008, and 2003 operating systems
  • Advanced media counters

Optional Features

  • ZebraNet 10/100 External Print Server. Class B digital device, approved for residential, commercial, or light industrial environment use only. Degradation in performance could occur if used in a heavy industrial environment.
  • ZebraNet b/g PrintServer- supports advanced wireless securities through an internal integrated radio card.
  • Additional fonts available
  • Deported display (HDMI Cable up to 2 Meters in length).
  • UNICODE
  • WGL4 through Swiss 721
  • Firmware Support for Downloadable TrueType Fonts
  • ZebraLink™ Solutions- Software
  • ZebraDesigner™ Pro – An intuitive, easy-to-use software program for creating complex label designs (option)
  • ZebraDesigner™ Offers basic features for simple label design
  • ZebraDesigner™ for XML – Easy-to-use label design software that enables printing on XML enabled printers
  • ZebraNet™ Bridge Enterprise – Centrally manage Zebra printers from a single PC screen anywhere on your global network.
  • ZebraDesigner™ Driver – A powerful printer driver compatible with Windows/XP/2003/2008/Vista/Windows 7
  • Zebra Setup Utility – an easy to use, Wizard driven printer configuration tool.
  • ZBI 2.0™ an optional, powerful programming language that lets printers run stand-alone applications, connect to peripherals, & much more.
  • ZBI-Developer™ programming utility makes it dramatically easier for programmers to create and test complex ZBI 2.0™ programs and distribute them to the printer.

ZebraLink™ Solutions- Networking

  • ZebraNet® b/g/PrintServer
  • ZebraNet® 10/100 PrintServer (external)

ZebraLink™ Solutions- Firmware

  • ZPL II – Universal language for Zebra printers. Simplifies label formatting and enables format compatibility with existing systems that run Zebra printers.
  • XML-Enabled printing – direct connect integration for bar code label printing, eliminates license fees and print server hardware and lowers customization and programming costs.
  •  Web View – Connect and control Zebra bar code printer’s via the printer’s Web interface using a common Web browser.
  • Alert – Printers equipped with ZebraNet™ print servers provide alerts via any email-enabled, wired, or wireless device to minimize downtime.

Bar Code Symbologies

  • Bar code ratios: 2:1, 7:3, 5:2, and 3:1
  • Linear bar codes: Code 11, Code 39, Code 93, Code 128 with subsets A/B/C and UCC Case Codes, ISBT-128, UPC-A, UPC-E, EAN-8, EAN-13, UPC and EAN 2-or 5-digit extensions, Plessey, Postnet, Standard 2-of-5, Industrial 2-of-5, Interleaved 2-of-5, Logmars, MSI, Codabar and Planet Code
  • 2-dimensional bar codes: Codablock, PDF417, Code 49, DataMatrix, MaxiCode, QR Code, TLC 39, MicroPDF, RSS-14 (and composite), Aztec

Communications Specifications

  • USB 2.0 port
  • High-speed bidirectional parallel interface, IEEE 1284:Compatibility mode, EPC, Nibble mode.
  • High-speed serial interfaces: RS-232C with DB9F connector
    – RS-232C with DB9F connector 
    – Configurable baud rate (300-115,200), parity, data and stop bits
    – Software(XON/XOFF) or hardware(DTR/DSR) handshake protocols
  • ZebraNet 10/100 Print Server
  • ZebraNet b/g Print Server (optional)
  • Applicator interface with DB15F connector +5V I/O and +24V to +28V I/O versions available

Operating temperature:

  • Thermal Transfer: 40° to 104°F (5° to 40°C)
  • Direct Thermal: 32° to 104°F (0° to 40°C)

Resetting Android and Windows handheld devices

We’ve all had handheld device problems. Glitches, ads popping up when you don’t even have a browser open, apps continually crashing, error messages, and turning off and not turning back on are just a few. On more than one occasion, I have been going somewhere new using Waze, Google Maps or my All Trails app and my handheld device’s screen has gone black, and the device is unresponsive. Almost all handheld devices have sealed batteries, so you can’t physically remove them to reset the handheld device. So, how do you reset something that never truly shuts down?

Soft Reset

One of the scarier issues is when a cellphone or handheld device goes completely dark and the screen will not turn back on, or the device will not power up at all. Most of us keep a close eye on battery life and know that this is not the issue, and assume the handheld device has gone  to “Electronics Heaven”. Most of the time your handheld device can recover from this, until the day that it doesn’t. This phenomena is known as the “Black Screen of Death”. The handheld device will not turn on, there is no sound, and will sometimes not even show it is plugged in or charging.

The fix for this issue is the same for Android and Apple. Hold down the power button until the handheld device starts up.

Easy, right?

Make sure to hold the button for an extra long time. It always takes longer than you expect. If you are timing it, a minute should be good. If the handheld device still does not start up, you can send it to us for repair if it is a model we support. Possible causes are usually a bad main board or power button.

Windows 10

Bluebird Mobile Data Terminals

To perform a soft reset, your handheld device needs to be turned on. Press and hold the volume down and power button until your handheld device vibrates and restarts. Do not touch the screen while you are doing this, even if the slide dialog shows on the screen.

Instances when you may need to soft reset a Windows handheld device:.

  • Apps fail to start
  • The camera will not activate
  • The unit starts to act strangely
  • The device is running down the battery or getting warmer than normal

This forces the machine to reboot, which can resolve many software related issues.

Hard reset back to factory specs.

Before doing a hard reset, be aware that this will wipe all of the data off of your handheld device except what is stored in an external card. Pictures are usually the most important things to back up on your handheld device. There are many services to backup photos that enable you to save these. Google Photos, Amazon Photos, and Microsoft OneDrive are just a few. If you have an unlimited data plan I suggest turning on the option to use cellular networks to make sure you do not lose any memories due to losing your handheld device, or a catastrophic event, like running it over with a truck. If you are using an Android device, there is a way to backup all your data to an external SD card, if your device has one.

Hard resets revert the unit back to factory defaults. This is useful to free up space, take out most viruses, reset the screen lock password, and will occasionally fix boot issues, among other things. I suggest that you check for any software updates before doing a factory reset, if the device boots up. The update could fix the problem you are having, without losing your settings and data. The software fixes can always be viewed in the changelog.

Windows 10 handheld device hard reset

The best way to reset the handheld device is through the menus, but if you cannot get the unit to boot, it is frozen on the boot screen, or is looping on the boot screen, there is a key combination you can enter to activate the reset. This key combination is the same on all Windows 10 handheld devices.

  1. Switch off the handheld device.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Down button and either connect your charger, or hold the power button. When you see activity, release the power button, if it is being held. When the exclamation mark appears release the button Volume down button.
  3. Now press the keys in the following sequence, there is a small window of time to input the key combination, so if it does not work you will need to power down the handheld device and try again: Volume Up, Volume Down, Power, Volume Down.
  4. The handheld device will reset immediately and  a picture of two gears will show up. After this completes, the handheld device will reset and you will be able to use it again.

If the handheld device is unable to get to the “!” screen or still will not start properly it can be sent to us for repairs, if it is a model we support.

Android handheld devices

If you cannot get into the menus on the handheld device to perform a factory reset, you will need to go into recovery mode . Please note, Android OS 5 (Lollipop) uses Factory Reset Protection (FRP) to lock your handheld device and data if the device is stolen. If you are going through the apps/menus, you do not need to worry about the FRP, and this is also the proper way to wipe the device, if you are giving it to someone else or selling it.. In order to reset the handheld device you will need the user’s Gmail address and password to complete the process, or the handheld device will be unusable. There are ways around this but they are difficult and not always effective.

There are many different variations of Android handheld devices with many different key combinations to get into the recovery menu. For the Bluebird EF5000s, hold down “volume down” and “left scan” when starting the unit. To find the key combination for your specific handheld device, do a web search for “recovery mode” and your handheld device model (e.g. “Pixel 2 recovery mode”). Once you get into recovery mode, the handheld devices are almost all the same. Volume keys always move the selection to the next or previous item, and the power key selects what has been selected.

  1. Enter recovery mode using the key combination for your handheld device.
  2. Turn off the handled device and use the key combination required to put it in recovery mode. (See below for common key combos)
  3. Use the Volume down button to select Factory Reset/Wipe Data and press power to select.
  4. The device will ask you to confirm.
  5. Once you have confirmed your choice, the device will reset, and the time this takes varies greatly between units.

Common handheld device key combinations:

  • Samsung Galaxy S8, S9, S10,  &Note: Power, Volume Up, Bixby key(this key on the left below the Volume Down) or on older models Home key at the bottom, if there is no Bixby key.
  • Nexus and Pixel: Power, Volume Up, Volume Down
  • LG G Series: Power, Volume Down

If a hard reset fails to fix the issue please contact us so we can provide information on how to send us your device for repair.

Thank you for reading,  Check back soon!

How a Managed Inventory System can help you save time and money

As a parts buyer, you have a tough job.

The Service Manager wants you to find the highest quality parts at the most economical price point for next day delivery, regardless of how late they gave you the order. You’ve got to coordinate shipping between various vendors and the customers site or a hold location. And then there’s the headache of getting the defective part back from the field service engineer. Even if you do get it back, you still must deal with shipping the part out for repair and following up with the repair center to have it returned to you.

What if there was a way to make this process easier, thereby taking some of the stress off you? This is where an established Managed Inventory System can help. Let’s look at how the system works.

MANAGED INVENTORY SYSTEM OVERVIEW

At Midrange Repair & Parts we have developed a Managed Inventory System that can ease the daily burden of parts management.

The system starts with a seed stock of inventory to maintain the products your company has under maintenance. This seed stock is determined by the type of machines being maintained, the quantity of machines, and the common failure items for these machines. When we build a program for a customer, we’ll ask for this information and provide the customer with recommended stock levels. The customer will then transfer the appropriate quantity of inventory to our warehouse location for storage. We receive the items into a virtual warehouse for that specific customer, recording the part number, serial number and condition of each item. The condition of the item will indicate a status of defective, repaired, or unrepairable. As a customer you’ll be able to access our customer portal to check the status of all your inventory.

When you need one of your parts, you’ll send an order to your MRP Account Executive who will start the order process. They’ll create a Sales Order to ship the part to your customer’s site or to a hold location for your Field Service Engineer to pick up. They’ll also include an Authorized Return Shipment (ARS) label with the package and instructions for your engineer to return the defective part to our repair facility. The first time your seed stock ships out you’ll only be charged for shipping. If the part we ship was originally defective and we repaired it, you’ll be invoiced for the repair work as well as the shipping charges.

We’ll monitor the ARS labels and watch for your Field Service Engineer to return the defective core part. When it arrives, we’ll receive it back into your inventory as defective for future repair.

Once a week we run a usage report to monitor which parts were used in the preceding 30-day period. The report shows us what was used, what you have in repaired inventory, what you have in defective inventory and what items should be repaired. This ensures we always have 30-days part usage repaired and ready to ship. By the way, we can ship your parts as late as 6:00 pm Central Time Monday through Friday.

HOW THIS BENEFITS YOU

So, how does this make your life easier? Let’s look at how most companies handle their inventory problems.

Purchase Only – Some companies purchase the parts they need either outright or on exchange. If you purchase the part on exchange it’s on you to make sure your Field Service Engineer sends the board back to you. This means either you’re tasked with managing the core exchanges for your various vendors or you’ll need a co-worker to help you manage them. Neither way is efficient or cost-effective.

Additionally, if you purchased the board outright, you’ll still want to get the defective board back from your engineer. If it’s a popular or valuable board you may decide to send them out to be repaired, assuming you don’t have your own depot repair center.

Having your stock repaired as needed – Depending on the size of your company and the volume of your maintenance contracts you may have decided to manage your own parts inventory. Now you’re having to manage two inventories, one for good stock and one for defective stock. You’ll need to monitor your parts usage, project your future usage, determine what defective parts to send for repair and in what quantities and follow up with your vendors as to the status of those repairs. You’ll also need to track and receive the repaired boards as they come back to you and receive them into good usable inventory. This just adds more work to your already busy schedule as well as a variety of added expenses.

The first improvement you’ll see when using our service is in cost savings. Having your boards repaired can save you up to 75% over the cost of purchasing boards. You only pay for parts that ship which means you don’t have to outlay money for inventory until it’s needed while reducing exposure to inventory write-downs.

The second improvement you’ll see with a Managed Inventory System involves time and efficiency. When you entrust us to manage your inventory and your repairs, you’ll find you have more time to take care of tracking down those hard to find purchases.

We’ll keep track of all your parts, both defective and repaired. Your parts can be shipped at a moments notice until 6:00 pm CST Monday through Friday. We monitor your usage and repair your defective inventory accordingly. You’ll see a savings in both time and money within a very short time period.

Call your MRP Account Executive today and see what we can do for you!