I found this wonderful American letterpress for sale in Fife, Scotland on eBay and just had to buy it! I had been looking at buying an ADANA as they are the most common in the UK but just resist the history that came with the press and its so much nicer to look at than the ADANA (sorry Adana fans).
It came in a wooden crate and wrapped in newspapers dated April 6th 1915 and an old tin and box with some goodies along with 15 chases made up with type. What did I pay you ask, well it was £150 with some other bits thrown in (10pt Time Bold U/L, 10pt Time U/L, 14pt Imprint Shadow U/L, composing rule, spacers quads etc), not bad as Adana are going for silly money now.
One of the downside to buying an American press is that the parts will cost me more but fortunately for me everything is intact apart from the rollers which amazingly I got off eBay in the UK! http://stores.ebay.co.uk/Bakers-Row. Rex at Bakers Row Shop said the Kelsey is a very rare press to find in the UK, would be nice to know how it found its way to Fife!
I have debated as to what extent to restore the press, do I repaint it or not? On closer inspection there is quite alot of surface rust on the body so I've decided to paint it just where there it needs it. The Ink Plate, Platen and Platen Back all are in really good condition with no rust.
Labels: Kelsey Excelsior 5x8