Measurements for roller runners from an Adana 8x5


I’m new to letterpress printing and it took me quite some time to figure everything out and get all the supplies I need for my Adana as letterpress materials are very rare in Germany.
But now that I finally received my rollers from England and bought some ink and types I noticed that I do need some of these runners as well…

So can any Adana 8x5 user provide the diameter and width of the roller runners to me?


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Hi Marion,
By tracks, I assume you mean trucks. We tend to use English terminology in Australia. Either way, the little wheels on the ends of the rollers were supplied by Adana to have a stepped down smaller diameter also for use when the rollers shrank down a bit. The wheels should be a firm (no slip) fit on the roller ends, as these wheels drive the roller across the type. Put the wheels on so that the larger diameter runs on the roller track, (the raised sections on either side of the bed). The surface of the wheels should be level with the surface of the roller. On one of my two 8x5s, I have elongated out the holes laterally, that secure the roller tracks to the bed. This allows me to gain a much finer roller setting. There should be about a 3 point ink stripe showing evenly on both ends of both rollers if the rollers are perfectly round. Roller tracks and trucks should be kept clean and free of grease and grit at all times as this combination is the key to good rolling. I turned a set of trucks made out of solid nylon rod on a metal working lathe and they are as good as the originals.
Good Luck.

Grant H.

Hi Grant,

thanks for your response. I thought roller runners was English terminology as this is what they call it on the Adana website as well. But anyway, I only wish I knew how how they were called in German ;)
I know that they come with two different diameters on each side. But my neither my Adana nor the rollers did come with these wheels so we’re trying to turn some on on our own as I don’t want to wait another onw or two weeks for having them shipped from the UK.
I know that they have to be something between 3,0 and 3,4 mm but I don’t know the exact diameter. You’re saying that ‘The surface of the wheels should be level with the surface of the roller’, so when I put the rollers with the wheels on a table everything should be the same level?
I think that they are too small when they have the same diameter as the rollers itself and therefore afraid that the types and dies cut into my rollers. My rollers are made of something like silicone and very soft…Well this is all very new to me and I still have to figure so much things out…


I have just measured the original bearer rollers on my Adana 8x5. The larger diameter is 31.6mm and the smaller is 30.4mm. The ink rollers are 27.5mm.

I don’t entirely agree with your previous reply. In my view the bearers should be loose on the shaft and they should NOT be the same diameter as the ink rollers. I too have made some for another similar press and confirm that nylon (or similar) is easy to turn to the correct diameter.

What I think is important is the correct DIFFERENCE between the size of the roller and the bearers.

Anyway, have fun!

Thanks so much, Albion.
I was wondering about that too and couldn’t believe that rollers and runners should be the same diamter. I will measure my ink rollers once again tomorrow. And then I will figure out the correct difference between the size of the rollers (I think mine are are 27,8 mm but I don’t have the caliper rule handy) and the size of the runner. Well, at least I try.

Thanks for the hint with the nylon also I have no idea where to get a nylon rod…but I will figure that out as well ;)

Thanks again for measuring!

I’ll let you know once they are running…

They do not have to be nylon: the original ones were metal. I have also used another plastic but cannot remember what it is called. There is some flexibility in the measurements and I don’t think you have to be too accurate, but clearly all 4 have to be the same.

The reason why I don’t have the runners rigidly fixed to the shaft is that it could cause the ink rollers to “scrape” over the type and force some ink down the side of the letters rather than tidily on the top surface.

You should aim for a “kiss” contact with the type so that only the printing surface takes the ink.

I shall be interested to know how you get on.

Incidentally I have in the past bought a lot of useful stuff from a German eBay seller called “Printoy” but he seems to have gone off the air. He had so much Adana material there must be a secret cache of it somewhere in Germany!

A firm called Caslon Limited with a St Albans England address has quite a few Adana 8 x 5 spares still for sale. Certainly worth a try

Did you manage to find or make the roller runners for your Adana 8 X 5? If not, I am sure I have some spares in my workshop (somewhere)!
Let me know and you are welcome to them at cost of postage.

A lot (if not most) of the members of the British Printing Society use Adana’s. A visit to their web site may be of use to you as their is a wealth of knowledge, expertise and spares available from their members.

Hi Marion, Just read your request about Adana Roller Runners. You may already know but Caslon Limited bought the Adana Company way back in the 1980’s and we still supply parts and most letterpress materials from our St. Albans facility.

Check our website: and click on Adana products.

We have 8 x 5 roller runners in stock at £28.00 per set of 4 and can make shipment to you against a Credit Card payment!

We also manufacture and sell high quality rubber rollers.

Anything else you require, just contact me!

Roy Caslon


you can buy rollers with or without runners at at a reasonable price, so i wouldn’t worry about having them made or trying to make them yourself.