5) Heavy, stiff paper with lots of curl. I worry, based on prior experience, that head strikes may be a problem on 44" rolls, especially near the end of the roll, until it's dialed in on our 9900.
With regard to #5 on your list---paper curl, did your sample by chance exhibit strong "reverse curl?" I bought a 24" roll of the BC Vibrance Baryta. This is a very thick, heavy and stiff paper. I was initially concerned with paper curl because of prior bad experience with the now discontinued Vibrance Rag. Nice papers, but the paper curl issue is a big negative, with both exhibiting their own form of curl.
The now discontinued Vibrance Rag (a heavy textured paper with a bit of tooth that I did like) exhibited a very strong nasty curl, that followed how the paper was rolled. By "reverse curl" I mean the new Vibrance Baryta actually curls up from the edges of the roll, and after printing in particular, will then curl in the direction opposite of how the paper is rolled. Very unusual. And no, it's not a humidity or other issue. I can (and have) printed several other various medias from difference manufacturers (including BC's Vibrance Lustre) and they all either lay fairly flat or exhibit "normal curl" after printing. Only the Vibrance Rag does this reverse curl thing and you can spot it from yards away laying on the counter with other papers. And not a little---it's pretty severe.
I can deal with the reverse curl after printing with application of my own D-roller of sorts. The concern I have is when printing. When I first loaded this paper (using the recommended settings) my 9900 had difficulties loading the paper, and I experienced disheartening head strikes. Not the normal, oh that's a little scrape there. I'm talking head strike of the oh shit my head may be damaged degree
. The reverse curl on the edges of the paper
was enough to lift off the paper path, so that when the print carriage passes, it caught on paper edge enough to actually rip a hole in paper! This is a heavy paper too. I really can't recall ever experiencing a head strike like this on my 9900 before, nor the difficulties in loading this paper. It's really hard to describe this "reverse curl" as I've never seen this behavior from a paper before. The paper is listed as a 14 mil, 345 GSM heavy photo baryta paper. I think the problem is the heavy weight of this paper and I don't think I need this kind of thickness in my work. Luckily, my 9900 does not appear to have suffered any damage from the head strike. I do strongly recommend increasing the vacuum on your printer to maximum.
With Vibrance Rag, you could count on losing several feet if not yards of this paper towards the end of a 24", 36" or 44" roll. I don't think the same is true for Vibrance Baryta. This paper actually seems to "lift" off the roll; it doesn't have a tendency to stay tightly rolled. It's that reverse curl characteristic that I worry about, particularly the smaller curl on the edges of the roll paper
once it's loaded into your printer....
Maybe I got a 24" roll from a bad batch; I don't know. I've gone through almost the entire roll now and reverse curl is consistent. No more head strikes. Full vacuum on. Otherwise, a nice paper, but the reverse curl issue really sours on me.
I'm curious to hear your experiences here.