I had a long wait, until September, for our iPF5000 because all the first UK batch were returned to (Germany) for a breakable part to be replaced. It may be that this is the gear replacement you are referring to?
Regardless, I have also had cassette feed problems with certain papers, especially Hahnemuehle. Are they more chalky or furred on the back? I couldn't get their Photorag artcards to load at all and yet the Crane Museo Fine Art cards work flawlessly. The same usually happens with other art papers. It drove us NUTS when we had a run of the smaller sizes to do. Has anyone else experienced this?
We have standardised on Museo Artcards, Museo MAX and Silver Rag for this reason, but also after extensive testing on our 5000 and 8000 there is no equal for gamut, quality and durability of finish that we have yet found, the downside is that they are also the most expensive papers.
Of course many of you will be looking for brightened and/or smooth papers and I cannot give advice on these.
To allow use of the cassette for the heavier paper sheets I have been using the 'premium matte paper' setting for all the artpapers and 'photoplus semigloss' for the silver rag,(and innova f type gloss, fineart pearl, breathing color allure in testing). Is this a wise thing to do or does it of itself cause the cassette loading problems?
Since selling our old (not so faithful) Epsons we have missed the excellent Colorbyte RIP a little. Although processing 600ppi/16bit files is very taxing on the computer systems, it is producing exceedingly fine results, I wonder what the guys at Colorbyte can come up with?
On a side note, a brief dalliance with processing a file out to ProPhotoRGB instead of AdobeRGB seemed to result in even more depth of colour but I will need to do more testing when there is time. Can anyone confirm that there are real world advantages to be seen on the latest printers?