Recalibrating a Datamax 4203

(Last updated on: July 28, 2017)

This post is primarily for CSS internal use but if you read this and find that this is your issue, feel free to try the solution or call us for support.

A client’s ticket was printing like this:

Here is what CSS Support did next:

  • Spoke to the client about printing issues that started out of the blue.
  • One day the printer was printing, the next day it was not printing correctly.
  • The tickets were printing so that there was at least 1″ of blank space before the printing started. We verified that the ticket stock was loaded correctly.
  • The top offset was set to -1.15.
  • We changed it to -1.40 and the ticket stock was pulled in too far into the printer.
  • We could not get it to print any better.
  • Since that time, now the printer will not print at all.
  • The fault light came on even when you press the feed button on the printer itself.
  • The fault light came on when trying to print a test from Windows.
  • The client re-installed the printer driver and still could not get the tickets to print without the empty space leading.
  • We uninstalled, then reinstalled the printer driver.
  • The fault light came on when pressing feed or test printing.
  • We did determine that right before this issue began, there was an update to Windows 10.
  • We gave them the support number for Honeywell.

Diane then responded:

It sounds like the printer needs to be reset to direct thermal/reflective and may need to be re-calibrated. This is something that we are hoping that Honeywell will be able to help you with.  However, they are no longer supporting the 4203 thermal printer.

Calibration isn’t so easy on these models. Here are instructions from my favorite technician from Datamax/Honeywell:

Hold down the F3/Cancel button when turning on the printer and continue to hold till the pause light goes out completely. Once that happens release the button, watch what light blinks after pressing the F1/Pause button.  If the pause light blinks then we can save the calibration by pressing at the same time the F1/Pause and F3/Cancel buttons for a few seconds then the pause light will possibly go on for a few moments and you will need to press for a second time the F1/Pause and F3/Cancel buttons.  Then the printer should be calibrated.

If you have more than one printer:

Print out the settings on the working printer (assuming they are using the same ticket stock) then use the settings from the working printer on the non-working printer that may have had its settings changed.  Also, check how the media is being loaded. If this has adjustable media sensors, be sure they are lined up correctly.  Should that not work, then restore the defaults to the printer that was not working and plug in the settings again.

Defaulting the printer clears out the settings on the printer.  So, if the printer is defaulted, it could then need to be re-calibrated and set back up to direct thermal and reflective with other custom settings possibly needed.  There have been times when settings don’t take or the printer does not calibrate and defaulting the printer, then plugging in the settings will  get it to work.  To factory default this older E-Class printer, one would hold down the three buttons F1, F2, and F3 then continue to hold the buttons down when turning the printer on for around 25 seconds.


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