PARTS ~ PARTS DIAGRAM ~ REPAIR ~ RESTORATION
KELSEY STAR LATCH(es) ~ KELSEY INK DISKS, CHASES & CHASE BEDS
Model Q Roller Carriage
IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT AVAILABILTY OF NEW & USED PARTS
Kelsey (& Other) Press Parts & Repair
If you own a Kelsey - or other brand manually operated letter printing press, we may be able to can get you parts for repair of your press - or repair your press for you.
Wouldn't it be nice to have an extra chase - or to replace that missing ink table on the press you just bought?. . We are working now to develop the relationships with a foundry and machine shop to once again be able to offer new parts - by duplicating parts from presses in our collection. We expect to soon be able to supply ourselves - and you - with the parts needed - to repair or restore Kelsey or other brand letterpresses.
When new parts are needed, we plan to make them. Many of the new parts we have made available in the past were cast - in America - of ductile steel, which will outlast the original - and somewhat brittle - lower grade cast iron used in the past. Some parts have also been cast of cast iron or aluminum as appropriate.
Although this work was not done at the Excelsior Press, we did at one time have a source of supply for these parts and we currently are working towards making available once again a convenient source for the parts that we - or you - may need for the restoration work that these little presses deserve.
This is a work in progress, and we cannot offer you all we would like - not qute yet - since we are, after all, printers with an interest in press repair, not machinists with years of experience fabricating missing press parts... - but as the project evolves, we will update this page with the most current information. - 9/30/2011
Contact Excelsior Press
regarding parts for or repair of your press.
But first: read the warning below - and understand that there are many variations in the fit of parts to Kelsey presses. Not only were there many versions of the same model, but since presses were some times fitted by hand, parts are not always interchangeable!
Please note this warning from the Kelsey Catalog:
Sometimes, all a press needs is some repair - new grippers, platen leveling, roller height adjustment. Sometimes, parts are broken and need to be replaced. We can do that here or help you do it yourself. Let us know what you need and we'll do our best to help you solve whatever problems you have encountered..
Custom Press Restoration - as available
The supply of used Kelsey presses seems to be waning. Some of you have already found a press, but it may need some work. Or you may have purchased one which is missing parts or was damaged in transit. For you there is some good news - The same skills and attention to detail that have made our restored Kelsey presses so popular is now available on a custom basis.
see animation of press assembly
Ways to save:
We can also simply service your press - replace any worn or missing parts, clean, lubricate, level the platen, set the roller heights, do some test prints. We can do this for only $200 plus the cost any new parts installed as needed. This is best done if you bring the press to the shop yourself and pick it up when it's done - typically in about a week.
* Note: Due to fluctuating market prices - specifically the cost of used presses plus varying costs for casting and machining new parts, all prices affected by these fluctuations must be set at time of purchase.
An Important note about KELSEY PRESS PARTS
We have a few dozen Excelsior Models in the "press shed" - all awaiting restoration.
I hesitate to sell parts of off these presses for two main reasons:
1) For every part I remove from a press in the shed, I will have to make a new part to replace the ones I remove. So far, we have made some, but it has been far more expensive than I had hoped it might be. I do think that eventually, we will be able to lower our costs thereby retail them at better prices than we can offer at this time.
For now, I am calculating used parts at 80% of the cost of new.
2) In addition: Kelsey parts are not all interchangeble between all model years. It seems that with each casting run, small things changed slightly at times. Many of their presses were had-finished to make parts fit to each other. We have restored enough presses by now that we've seen many models and are documenting small discrepancies between them.
For example, while comparing a Model O (early style) ink disk with a Model U (new style) disk, we found a difference of nearly 6 points between the height position when mounted in the press. To compensate for this, we are making adjustment shims to allow the user to adjust the height precisely for best performance.
Please do bear with us as we increase our inventory of new parts and make used parts available for prompt shipment.
|Photos of Kelsey Parts posted in
response to inquiries:
Kelsey Star Chase Latch
This is the chase latch used on *our* Kelsey Star. At least one other latch system was used on at least one other model of the Kelsey Star.
This latch is curvey.
and is mounted on a pin in the bed of the press
and can be removed or replaced by removing the two nuts shown here, which removes the ink disk bracket. Behind that is the pin the chase latch
Paul Aken's Star Latch:
This one slides in from the side, whereas the one on our press is pressed down and rotates up to release the chase.
The Excelsior Model Q Roller Assembly
Unlike most Kelsey Presses, the 6x10 Roller Mounting system went through some major modifications over the years. Face it; the 4-hook system is a problem on the 6x10. It's hard to adjust the pressure to be strong enough to hold the rollers against the form, but at the same time loose enough to allow the rollers to move easily as they go up and onto the ink disk. Add to that the problems of bent or worn roller hooks. It was a problem then; it's a problem today. Unfortunately, almost no one is aware of this "Style B" option - and no on has parts for it... until now.
The Model X took this concept a step further and utilized a radically different system for holding the rollers in place - a direct copy of the roller arms of the Chandler & Price Pilot. Those are rare and cannot be easily retro-fitted to older 6x10's.
But we have a solution....
We have one of these 6x10 "Model Q"* presses in the collection at the moment. It uses the mechanism shown below. Our intention is to replicate this assembly and make it available as a sensible alternative to replacing the roller hooks that are still on most of the 6x10s currently in use or being sold...
Watch this page for more information to come on this system and our progress making it available to all 6x10 owners as a 5-minute bolt-on assembly.
click on the photo above to see a larger version of this image
* note: Some Model Q presses have an integrated system which is identical to that used on the Cooks' Victor (also sold by Kelsey as their "6x9 Victor Press" for many years). That system is shown on an Excelsior Model Q in the image above and is integrated into the roller carriage, which must be replaced to use it. The device shown above - which we intend to replicate - can be easily bolted onto any roller-equipped press in the time it would take to simply replace the hooks...
page last updated
10/29/09 11/20/10, 9/30/11