Kelsey Excelsior Model U 5x8 Letterpress Printing Press

Hi, I was wondering how difficult it would be to have rollers and a chase found/purchased for this press?

Would an Adana 5x8 be a better press?

And lastly, can anyone tell what size this press is, and how does Golding compare? How difficult would it be to find rollers and a chase for it?

thanks, Maureen

image: golding.JPG


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Well that’s not a Kelsey but a Golding. Rollers should be available from Tarheel Roller ( but I am not sure about a chase.

This press is a Golding, not a Kelsey.

Goldings aren’t the most common presses around, but that doesn’t mean that you won’t be able to find pieces. It just might take a few more phone calls. Adanas are also decent presses, and both are good for learning to print and doing small projects.

I’m assuming that you’re in the US/Canada.

Dealers like Letterpress Things, Dave Churchman, and Don Black (all three are listed in Briar Press’s Yellow Pages) will be able to help you track down parts. Rollers can be purchased from NA Graphics and Tarheel (check the Yellow Pages again), and they probably have cores and trucks, too.

It’s not really possible to tell chase size from a photo—you’ll need to take some measurements (or get an exact weight) to tell what size it is.

Best of luck!
May Day Studio
Montpelier, VT

Chases for my Golding Official #2 (4x6”) have been hard to come by. Sigwalt 4x6 chases will fit. But they’re no easier to find.

Rollers should be relatively easy. You’ll also need trucks.

To figure out what size it is measure the diameter of the ink table and subtract a couple of inches or so. The size is usually the inside dimensions of a chase. The ink table would be a bit wider than the long direction of the inside of the chase.

This one looks about 4x6 or 6x9. These are really nice presses. Don’t let the lack of chase or rollers and trucks hold you back if the price is right.

I think this is either a Golding Official #1 (3x4-1/4) or a #2 (4x6) — definitely not a 6x9. It can probably do very nice work — Officials are great presses — but the chase will be hard to find. You may wind up having to have one made by a welding shop. It’s a little tricky because the chase is probably held in by two pins about half way up the sides of the bed, grabbing small wedges that stick out of the sides of the chase.

You guys know your stuff! Yes, the photo was of a Golding.

I tried to attach the Kelsey, but for some reason it didn’t load. Do you think the rollers and chase will be easier to find?

The Adana is complete and ready to go. Anyone have an idea what it’s worth?

thanks for all your input!!!

Kelsey 5x8: the chases (and any other parts) will be far easier to find than nearly any other tabletop press. I believe Alan at Excelsior Press has a connection with a wealth of spare parts.

Rollers are available from Tarheel, NA Graphics, and eBay.

You’ll have a blast.

The Adana is a fine press as well, but parts may be a little harder to find on this side of the pond. Either one would be worth about the same—all depends on condition and how eager you are to get started.

Yes; parts for the Kelsey will be easier to get. But it is an inferior press for printing quality work. I’d rather use the Golding Official #2 (4x6) than the Kelsey 5x8 I got rid of long ago, I haven’t used an Adana but the impression I get from other printers is that it is better than the Kelsey.

Not that the Kelsey is incapable of really fine work; some of the best printing I know was done on a larger 9x13 Kelsey. But it takes a lot more work on the Kelsey. You’ll spend lots of time tweaking the impression screws and throwing out prints that aren’t up to snuff.

maureenleahy - If you are having trouble uploading a photo, look under ‘General technical questions’ in the Help section. The link is in the gray border at the top of every page.

As for the Golding, as others have said, unless you buy it very cheap, the parts may take time to find and/or be costly to make. Another part that could be a problem is the roller spring, more like a coil on this press. From your photo it is hard to see if all the springs are present or damaged, but this part is different from the conventional roller arm springs found on similar presses.

In the photo below, the spring on the left is the type of spring shown on your press. It is wrapped outside the roller arm, unlike the conventional spring on the right. This can be another tricky part to find or have made, although it may be possible to replace it with a conventional spring.

The press in your photo is probably one of the two presses that AdLibPress mentioned, both small presses. An additional issue to consider before you decide what press to buy is to think about what you want to print. A press with a 4x6 chase will not print a 4x6 area. Use the search field to find more information on this subject. One helpful thread is at .

image: roller_springs.jpg