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Zebra LP2824

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This is a linear thermal dot matrix printer, from Zebra, formerly from Eltron. Both brands are used interchangeably on the printers, depending only on date of manufacture. The printer may also carry the model number WS8240. The capabilities of the printer depend upon the firmware used, as well as the head and attachments. Differences to the rear ports of the printer vary by board.

The printer requires thermally treated labels, but no ink, as the head reacts with the coating to darken where heated. There are 203 or 300 dots per inch, depending on head, and 1D barcodes should be printed directly down.

Troubleshooting[edit | edit source]

Problem Solution

Run a test print.

  • Press the button on top of the machine, while turning on. Release button after light flashes twice. Printer will measure length and width of labels, and print a test page, including these measurements, a head line test, and stats on the printer. Afterward, it will indicate that it is in dump mode, press the button again before printing anything graphical, or wait to print everything being sent to it if dump is desired.

Printer working correctly, but nothing printing to labels

  • Check that the labels are thermal using another printer, bag sealer, or other regulated heat source.
  • Replace or resolder the diode marked D8, top of the board, just behind the USB port on USB models.
  • Check that the head wires are connected to both sides of the head, and to both connectors on the motherboard
  • Check that the ground pin is connected to the motherboard, and firmly screwed in to the back of the head plate.
  • Check the continuity in all wires from the motherboard to the head.
  • Replace head

Light stays red

  • Plastic is yellowing, but "head-up" sensor depends on reflectivity of the inside of the lid to see the head is down. Place a white label, or white paint, on plastic on the right side beside the head, directly opposed to the head up sensor.
  • Check the cable for the "head-up" sensor.
  • In really drastic situations, place a label or tin foil over the head up sensor
  • Replace "head-up" sensor.

Error "NO GAP"

  • Replace motherboard
  • Replace the assembly marked on the motherboard silkscreen "BL GAP"
  • Replace the assembly marked on the motherboard silkscreen "FEED TLP"
  • Reverse the board for the "BL/GAP" board itself, as it only works well one way, but fits physically in both
  • Make sure the "BL/GAP" assembly is not plugged in to the "LBL TAKEN" connector, as they are keyed the same

Drivers[edit | edit source]

Due to the languages of this printer, EPL and, in some versions, ZPL, being well documented in their respective programming guides, there are many drivers avaialble for these printers. The two primary Windows driver versions are available from Zebra themselves, and Seagull Scientific, a company that makes a program for automating barcode labels. Both contain ads for other products, but the Seagull driver has more fine tuning available, as well as keeping a more uniform naming structure for printers, best in cases where the user may be using multiple models with the same raw code.

Most programs made to use these printers prints RAW format labels, bypassing the windows driver to some degree and sending the raw printer language, making for a much faster print job, usually about 1 second to send to the printer as opposed to 5-10 seconds for a complex label.

Since the printer can accept a well documented language, this leaves open the possibility of implementation on microcontrolers that may not otherwise have a capacity for a USB printer. Most versions have RS232 serial, and can accept it's use for printing and debug. This means that one can take the input from a serial scale, for example, and directly instruct the printer to document the weight.

External Links[edit | edit source]

| EPL Programming Guide