3880 not seeing ink carts


Today I had to refill carts, even replaced an old leaky Y position cart with a brand new one I had bought some time back. All good, took the Epson OEM chip out of the older cart, put it in the new. (not) Funny thing is the printer now is not seeing the LM cart!!! Any hint to solve this problem will be strongly appreciated. Of course this happens in the middle of a job I’m printing for a new photo show in Patagonia. I have 3 of my prints selected and only negative done. I’m not in a rush yet but will be soon.





One more question about the problem I’m having with my 3880 as it doesn’t see a cart. I tried to switch the OEM small chip between last two carts since I was working with these two last evening/night. Before switching the printer display panel showed it was missing (actually NOT seeing) the Y position cart. I took both carts off the printer, put the OEM small chip that was in the Y cart in the LM cart and the one that was in the LM cart in the Y one. Now the display tells it is the LM cart that is missing. Are those OEM chips interchangeable-equivalent ? Or maybe I unwillingly also switched the bigger refillable carts too ? I’m completely lost now.

On the other side, if this small chip got damaged, shall I just get a new brand new OEM cart and just replace the small chip ?





The OEM chips are NOT interchangeable (nor are they marked for their channel).



that’s bad news!

thank you anyway, what would you suggest to do ?





What I suggest is to gently push in the LM and Y carts (1mm or so) and put a tiny bit of folded paper under the carts. This will register the control chip in the correct position.


This should fix it.




Bad news, again. Did that and nothing good happened


If you switched the OEM chips, and as a result it switched from Y to LM being not seen, doesn’t that suggest that the Y OEM chip is bad? Regardless of them not being interchangeable?

Do you have any spare chips, Pablo? Old (or new) OEM carts that you could pull one from? If nothing else, I have about 2 dozen empty carts with chips (and 3 loose chips that I don’t know the origin of) including 3 Y and 2 LM that I can scavenge chips from for you. Of course then there is delivery time so this may not help you.

About Walker’s suggestion to shim the bottom of the offending cart, when you pushed it up to insert the shim did you notice any change on the display panel? I ask because I spent most of yesterday afternoon/evening fussing with getting a set of refillable carts full of Piezoflush to work in 3880 with a bad K-switch that a friend has had mothballed for the last 2 years. I did have to move a couple of them just right to get them to read and I did notice an immediate change in the display when contact was made.


yes, Keith, that would make sense if I were some more reasonable and less anxious kind of guy.

At this point I’ve just bought a new Y cart and a LM cart too. Being that it was the LM cart that showed up as missing in the display panel I simply put the original Epson LM cart in just to check this is a new and fresh righteous cart with its new chip. Well, first the printer complained: “Maintenance, cartridge error, please replace”. Don’t have any new of maintenance carts so will leave this for tomorrow. Tried to reset the chip with the corresponding chip resetter but the thing keeps not working.

And no, I don’t have any spare chip. On the other side I appreciate your will to help but, as you say, I’m running out of time so delivery is impossible, this time. Thank you a lot any way.

As for the shim and such yes, as soon as the cart was in the display asks you to close ink carts door. But once the door is closed the missing cart message shows up immediately. Seems to me any change in contacts prompts that change in the display and this doesn’t mean things are right enough until you get all doors closed. How much I miss the “READY” message showing in the display! long sigh… Will be back at this tomorrow afternoon.

thanks again








Another thing to check is that the spring wires (3) are not stuck up (bottom of control chip).





yes, Walker, I checked that too. Un/Fortunately they seem to be healthy.

This is making me mad, totally crazy and frustrated. Maybe I’d have to see a shrink



I understand how frustrating this can be and I’ve been there. My one suggestion is to (if you can) put all OEM carts back into the printer and ensure that they all read correctly. Then put the IJM carts back in one at a time. You will find the culprit this way.




that’s an idea !

I’ll do that tomorrow evening so I can get my fourth in a row of frustrating days !

well, seriously, I must leave now, it’s dinner time, then tomorrow my mother celebrates her 92nd birthday with a lunch. After that I’ll be able to be back to this self-punishing thing