How to restore an Adana Five - Three

So first off I don’t have much interest is letterpresses in particular but I like making stuff and I like old machinery so restoring this printing press comes under my scope of interests. £17 from an auction so little lost if it all goes wrong.

Can someone point me in the direction of a parts list? I found a parts supplier an 8 x 5 machine but no 5 x 3 parts. Based off looking at pictures I can tell I am missing the inkplate and rollers but any more intricate mechanisms I can’t discern from pictures. Also does anyone know a source for 5 x 3 parts? Carlson only does them for 8 x 5 machines and as far as I can tell they are the only suppliers.

edit: I would post pictures of the press but they dont appear to want to appear.

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As you quote the price paid in £,s Sterling, you are hopefully in the U K. in which case, I can probably help you with the parts you are missing, all the Info you may need, and virtually all your future needs.
If you have worked out how to Message OFF Line, send me a message and I will return with a landline number for in depth help/tuition. . To the best of my ability.!

The Proof Reader wants a word with you anyway ???.

Regards and Good Luck… Mick..

Addendum? As A.L.P. implies, below Caslon/Adana have the virtual monopoly, consequently the Prices reflect that, Unfortunately.

The price you posted implies UK. Check with Caslon Inc — they are agents for the Adana and probably have the parts you need. As to pictures, eliminate all special characters from the filenames — simple alphabetic names are best without punctuation.


Found a manual for the press on this website and worked out the only bits missing are the rollers, the ink plate and the “gripper box with thumbscrew” and “gripper finger”.

The gripper arm is still there so I can with relative ease make a new finger and thumbscrew.

Now I could easily buy rollers and ask Carlson for a ink plate but that would a: be less interesting than making them and b: incredibly expensive.

£50 for rollers? Do they have a gold core inside that plastic shell? If something that simple is that much I dread the price of something that would require machining and casting.

To be serious wht is the material of rollers? I own a small lathe and if required could obtain access to lathes large enough to turn train wheels. My observation so far is a steel rod pushed into a larger plastic rod with two nylon wheels (called trucks?)placed either side.

In addition to the material could anyone with rollers please tell me the: diameter of the inner steel rod (I can guess the length of 7 1/2 ” to match the distance between the roller carriages), the diameter and depth of the nylon rollers and finally the length and diameter of the roller.

Making an ink disc is not that easy, it might be wiser to contact Caslon Ltd, and for rollers, I advice you to buy good quality rubber rollers and not try to economize on them. Without good rollers, mediocre or bad printing. I get the impression that you don’t know a lot about printing… restoring machines is one thing, but knowing how to work with them and use them well, is another thing.

Rainbows, As your opening shot implies, *not much interest in L/press* and corroborating *Thomas* above, our chosen path needs a lot of dedication and can not be learned in weeks or months, more like Years.!!!
As Thomas implies Re-manufacturing an Ink disc is not for the faint hearted, options are limited (especially with no original)
If you resort to having one recast, yes, with original for pattern they/it arrive back from the (generally) Aluminium Foundry and then have to be Faced & Bored for the Stub/Spindle, even that operation is not done lightly.

Assuming that the Repro has been re-manufactured from even a Good original, as Ink Discs (normally) are with tapered top flange, to conduct the rollers On & Off without hitting a raw/sharp edge, and the Dogs/Teeth of the ratchet for the rotation of the Disc are only as good as the Sand Casting Repro.!

If you decide to turn one from scratch, that is an even bigger undertaking, it has to be a very thick Billet of Aluminium to allow for the *Hub* that carries the Stub/Spindle, it is heartbreaking to turn that amount of swarf to waste, not to mention the electricity.!!

Obviously it is possible to turn the hub for the Stub, to face the disc to factor in (turn) the bare ring for the ratchet for the Teeth/Dogs,
then it gets complicated, to machine the teeth even IF a Milling machine is available, the next essential requirements are (A) a Sine Vice to cut the Teeth at the correct angle, AND (B) A rotary dividing head/turn table to divide the increments of the teeth to match the circumference for the rotation.

I can and am, able at present to Turn Ink Disc,s but only up to the point where the above mentioned Devices are required, fortunately I acquired My milling machine, & lathe from the Machine shop of the local University, and with (occasionally), a little Bribery can have the odd *Private Job* done.

Re your other queries, Adana,s up to 8 x 5 have fixed bearer rails and do NOT equate to type high, therefore the diameter of the Trucks/Wheels is Bigger than the diameter of the compound, generally/nowadays (as Thomas implies) Rubber, as opposed to Polyurethane.
Not established if Caslon (spelt C A S L O N ??) or Elli Evans work to a recognised *Shure* hardness.???

In the smaller sizes, Adana,s 3 x 2, 5 x 3, (H.S.1) and 6 x 4, (H.S.2) in original format used standard size rod for roller cores, 1/4” and 3/8” machined with concave (between centres) rebates in each end, for subsequent GRINDING (not turning??) of recast compound.

Trucks/Wheels, over the course of time, have been produced from, Alloy, Brass, Nylon, Plastic/Bakelite, and a long time ago, original Adana,s were produced with 2 stage reversible trucks/wheels to give more or less clearance for inking.?!?!

There is much more, it will be a steep learning curve.
Hopefully Thomas And I collectively, have given you a target to aim at.

Maybe Win, Lose or even No result, publish your findings On Line for the benefit of those following on behind.

Thank You and Good Luck.