SUMMARY: Weird Problem with SPARCprinter

From: Jack Stewart (jack@laguna.CCSF.Caltech.EDU)
Date: Tue Dec 17 1991 - 05:39:07 CST

PROBLEM: Output from SPARCPrinter was shifted up 1/4 inch.

SOLUTION: none yet. By a process of elimination, I am certain that
some piece of internal hardware (on the Printer) is damaged. I am
still trying to get a hold of Sun to confirm this and see if they can
service it onsite or if I need to send it back to the factory.

I wish to thank everyone who responsed to my original query. I
thought that I had tried everything but I got a few new ideas. I am
now sure that it is a hardware problem.

There is a problem that is very similar to this one. If one of the
magnets in the paper tray is in the wrong spot you will get unusual
output. Ultimately this problem may be related to the magnets (perhaps
something is wrong with the sensor array) but unfortunately that
wasn't the solution for this printer.

I tried the following with no success.
Different types of printing (text, postscript, framemaker, TeX) - same
Checked to make sure magnets were in the correct spot.
Swapping paper trayings with another (working) SPARCprinter - no
        change on either printer.
Swapping drum cartridge with another (working) SPARCprinter - no
        change on either printer.
Moving the printer to the location of a working printer and attaching
        it to that host - the problem followed the printer.

So I am reasonably certain that the problem is in the hardware of the
printer. If anyone is interested I can let you know (via E-Mail) what
Sun says about the printer after it is fixed. Thanks again for the


Jack Stewart                                     E-Mail: jack@CCSF.Caltech.EDU
Caltech Concurrent Supercomputing Facility,       Phone: 818-356-2153
Mail Stop # 158-79, 391 S. Holliston, 
Pasadena, CA 91125.                            #include  <std.disclaimer>

RESPONSES: From: Mark Ferraretto <>

I get the same kind of problem. Except everything is moved down about an inch or so. Could you please let me know what's happening if you find anything out?

sorry I couldn't help

-- _ Name : Mark Ferraretto Title: Computing Officer \ \ Place : Department of Physics and Mathematical Physics || \ \ University of Adelaide ==========>==>==-- Aarnet: || / / Phone : +61 8 228 5428 /_ / Phax : +61 8 224 0464

From: (Jon A. Tankersley)

I stuck some foam rubber in the magnet slot to prevent slippage. I was having the same problem with all pages, and finally found out it was a magnet just slightly out of whack. Other than that I couldn't tell you.

From: (Doug Neuhauser)

Double check (and triple check) the magnets on the paper tray. I have had them register the wrong position even though they LOOKED like they were in the right position. - Doug Neuhauser,, 415-642-0931

From: smc@goshawk.LANL.GOV (Susan Coghlan)


Sorry, I had that problem and it was because the magnets on the paper tray were set for the wrong size paper. I've talked to our Sun rep and that's all he could suggest also. It sounds like you'vealready checked that possiblility out quite throughly, and I haven't any other suggestions to offer you but I'd be interested in hearing what is causing your problems.

Susan Coghlan

From: David Fetrow <>

Have you tried swapping printers? That would tell you if it's in the workstation or the printer itself.

-- -dave "One day. Soon. The children of TOPS and VMS, UNIX and Finder will join hands in peace and brotherhood. They shall gaze upon a new operating system; an OS that will conquer the world. Finally united, they say as one: "Bleech".

From: (Peter Farmer)

Hi Jack,

Your problem sounds like a problem we experienced with TeX documents converted from dvi format to postscript. Before using Sparcwriters, we had apple laserwriters. We used dvialw to convert dvi to ps. When we subsituted sparcwriters we had your problem. It turned out that apple postscript isnt quit "standard". To fix the problem we replaced dvialw with dvips which generates much more "portable" postscript. Perhaps you need to investigate the applications software you are using to generate postscript rather than the sparcwriter. Does the standard ascii to ps filter for prelimn work ?. If so, then its probably not the printer thats at fault.

Peter Farmer e-mail: Prorammer phone: +61 6 249 3434 Department of Computer Science, fax: +61 6 249 0010 2nd floor, Crawford Building, Australian National University Canberra, AUSTRALIA

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