Thursday, April 26, 2012

Price Gun Care and Maintenance - Best Practices

Print Friendly and PDFIn today's workplace, everyone is trying to save a few dollars and lower overhead costs. Sometimes this involves getting a longer life span from your business assets. To this end, we've come up with a few tips and practices to make that price gun last a little longer. Certainly, not every idea here works for every type of price gun, but as a whole, you may find that by following this simple guide, you can add 20-50% to the life span of your pricing gun.

General Use Practices

Use the lanyard wrist strap

Most price guns come with one. Dropping a pricing gun is never a good thing, if it is a metal framed gun, like the TOWA brand guns, it will cause the frame to bend out of shape. Other models, can crack or lose an important part (like a spring). And in some models, the ink roller would come loose inside and get jammed inside the mechanisms.

Store in a cool relatively humid location

Some environments cause the ink rollers and pricing bands to dry out, some symptoms include flaky material on the label after application, or yellowed or grayed bands in the price dial window. For optimal life span of both the ink roller and the pricing bands, keep your pricing gun in a controlled environment. Some locations to avoid: Direct Sunlight, Heated (Over 90F) or Cooled (Below 46F) Locations. De-Humidified Locations. Areas with high Sea Salt like beachfront shops etc., should keep the guns after use stored in a ziploc bag or equivalent container to prevent corrosion of metal parts.

Replace the Ink Roller (Early and Often)

An ink roller will have a lifespan of about 3 months or 10,000 impressions (whichever comes first). Make sure you replace your ink roller to prevent the microscopic dry fibers in the ink roller from getting into the microscopic holes in the print head bands.  If the print head bands get filled with fibers from the ink roller and not ink, it will cause a bloating effect.[1]


Instructions and Tutorials

There are some great resources including printed instructions and video tutorials available at or for helping you load and use your gun.

Don't Force it.

If it seems that there's extra force required, generally it means that a step was missed in loading or maintaining.  Stop immediately and try something else.


The Print Head

Once in a while, you may need to remove extra fibers or dry ink blotches from some of the numbers on the application side of the print head bands.  To do this, we recommend a solution of 1/10 dish soap and 9/10 water, and a soft bristled toothbrush.  Dip the brush in your soapwater solution, and brush gently in a circular motion the numbers like 4, 6, 9, and 0.  other numbers generally won't need this treatment, but on some models you can brush in a vertical direction.

Interior Mechanisms

Pricing labels will cause build up of adhesive on various moving and stationary parts of the interior and exterior of the pricing gun.  Not all adhesive removers are the same.  Avoid using corrosive products like goo-gone because it will wear away the plastic and rubber parts of your price gun.  Instead go with gentler products like rubbing alcohol or dish soap.  For picking at hard to reach locations, try to use wood or plastic toothpicks.

[1]Bloating Effect - This is a common problem for print head bands, caused by 2 major factors: 1. Microscopic Paper and Ink Roller Fibers getting trapped in the porous rubber printhead bands. 2. Repeated use of specific price points. (example  $X.99  where X changes but the other characters don't.  This causes the most used bands to exhibit the natural bloating that occurs over time to happen only to some and not all characters equally.


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