MEET … DOCTOR INK !

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MEET … DOCTOR INK !

 user 2006-06-06 at 12:36:00 pm Views: 49
  • #15749

    The doctor is ink
    Ink
    Doctor takes the pain out of buying toner

    Diana and Scott Ohman, owners
    of Ink Doctor, the first ink cartidge recycling business in Grand
    Forks.Larry Ohman is known in Grand Forks as the ink doctor.His
    specialty?”Taking the hurt and the pain out of buying ink cartridges,”
    he said.Ohman and his wife, Diana Ohman, own Ink Doctor, the only
    cartridge and toner remanufacturing store in Grand Forks.Ink Doctor, at
    2520 S. Washington St., opened a few months ago.Ohman uses a
    surgical-like cartridge restoration method he says is new to the area.
    The result is a 40 percent to 50 percent reduction in price and, in
    most cases, more ink per cartridge, he said.Ohman’s business works like
    an exchange program. Clients bring in their old cartridges and toners
    and exchange them for refurbished items that cost up to 50 percent less
    than new ones, he said.But ink-refilling systems don’t work for every
    cartridge. About 20 percent of all available brands can’t be
    refurbished at all, experts said.Most recycled cartridges contain more
    ink than factory-filled cartridges, Ohman said.”A new HP-21 comes with
    5 milliliters of ink,” he said. “We flush it, check the electronics and
    fill it up with 12 milliliters, so you get almost 2½ cartridges.”A new
    HP-21 black inkjet cartridge costs about $30. Ink Doctor’s refurbished
    version sells for $19.Most inkjet containers can be recycled up to 10
    times, which eliminates waste and saves oil and energy, Ohman said.It
    takes about a gallon of oil to make a toner cartridge for a laser
    printer and 3 ounces of oil to manufacture a small cartridge for a
    home-based printer, he said.”Every time you recycle cartridges, you
    save them from going into the landfill,” Ohman said.
    Quality control
    Industry
    experts say some recycled inkjet cartridges cause problems such as
    horizontal lines and white streaks in the print or incomplete
    characters and graphics.But Ohman said he has a very strict quality
    control system. He and his wife personally inspect and test each
    cartridge in several printers before they put them out on display.How
    many times a cartridge can be recycled varies from cartridge to
    cartridge and from company to company. Industry experts say that some
    cartridges can be recycled more than a dozen times.Ohman says between
    five and 10 times depending on the brand and model is enough.
    Like no other
    The
    Ohmans were thinking about opening their own business when they came
    across an article in the Wall Street Journal about the popularity of
    recycling businesses in the East and West Coasts.”We wanted something
    different for this area,” Diana Ohman said.They did the research and
    found out that Grand Forks and East Grand Forks combined had just the
    right population to support an ink cartridge store.Ink Doctor is keen
    on supporting the local economy, she said.The couple said they could
    solicit used cartridges on the Internet and have them mailed out to the
    store as similar businesses do,Instead they chose to place portable
    drop-off boxes in churches, businesses and schools around town, so they
    have a constant supply of ink shells, and so people can get some money
    for their used cartridges.Ink Doctor pays the companies and nonprofit
    organizations that host his drop-off boxes about $2 for each cartridge
    deposited.Some of his best partners are school and religious youth
    groups looking for money to pay for trips and community activities,
    Ohman said.For more information about Ink Doctor, call (701) 775-4657.