Rollers/trucks hitting chase bed - HELP!

Hello. I’m totally new to letterpress. I purchased a Kelsey Excelsior 9 x 13 and took it apart, cleaned it up and re-assembled it. I received my new rollers from Tarheel, put them on but am unable to get the rollers to travel over the chase bed. I’m attached photos. No matter how much force I use, unless I physically pull the roller hooks up, it won’t go over the bed. I’ve greased the holes that the roller hooks go through and backed out the nuts holding the springs in place (as far as they would go.) Could it be a spring problem (need a less tense spring etc.). Am I wrong in thinking that having the nuts at the bottom creates less tension and screwing them up farther would create more tension thus not allowing the hooks to adjust easily?? Any help would be greatly appreciated. -Christine

image: roller trouble1.jpg

roller trouble1.jpg

image: roller trouble2.jpg

roller trouble2.jpg

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Are you sure the bed is fully inserted into the press frame? It looks in the photos like it is sticking up a little high. It has to go down into a support and back against the frame. Also, I don’t recall how the ink disc support is mounted on the press — if movable its position is, as you can see, critical. I also notice that your rollers are larger than the trucks — a potential additional problem for inking once you overcome this problem.


Bob is right, the bed isn’t in the press right, there is two grooves on the chase latch, you have the bed forward and latched in the chase latch, the bed should be back a little. also sometimes the bed might not be seated all the way down into the press. i had a 9x13 a long time ago, you will definately build some muscles working this press. Good Luck Dick G.

I CAN’T THANK YOU BOTH ENOUGH. I feel foolish but was hoping it was something simple. I actually had the chase in backwards which created 1 big notch for the latch to grab therefore it wasn’t sitting properly. When I put the chase in correctly there are 2 notches for the latch to grab. It’s been killing me that I haven’t been able to figure it out. David from Tarheel Roller makes rollers for a fairly local working print shop museum that uses the same exact model I have so I hope the they will be OK. I’m sure this won’t be my last question as I start the printing process. Thanks again for the speedy response. -Christine

Christine, tape those roller trucks to the same diameter as the rollers to avoid over inking (black vinyl electrician’s tape works well) — and check the height above the bed of the rails — they may also need building up. You might as well start without those strikes against you! ;-)


Thanks!! I got the tape on the trucks part but not sure what you mean about the height above the bed of the rails…how would I build that up if needed??

Start by measuring it — it may not need building up. Get a good straightedge and a piece of type or a type-high gauge. Put the straightedge across the two rails and check under it if the type or gauge will pass under just touching the straightedge. If it will not go the rails are low. If only a very little bit (a few thousandths) it is probably no real problem but if it’s 1/16 inch or more I would suggest building up the rails too. You can use a metal tape with adhesive on one side that you can get at some hardware stores or a machine shop may have it. Trim the tape to the same width as the rails and put on as many layers as needed to get close to type high. If the difference is more than 1/16 inch you can epoxy a piece of aluminum angle material 1/16 inch thick onto the rail and build up from there with tape. Just be sure you leave clearance on the sides for the chase inside and the roller arms outside.