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Post and Go/Faststamps

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Julia Lee11/10/2012 09:29:57
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It's certainly different at the Croydon crown office.

You can generally dispatch your letter or package relatively quickly, rather than wait ages for your number to be called... (I do much prefer the 'sit-down-and-we'll-call-you' approach to a queue).

John McCallum12/10/2012 16:40:54
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Adrian,

What you received is correct. The Wincors are set to cut after each fifth stamp. If you had ordered a collector's strip you would have received two strips of three. If you have the luck to see a kiosk open, you would see three printers and three rolls - one for the faststamps, one for the post and go labels and the third for receipts.

Only other comment is the address is in lower case lettering. This is common but in subsequent visits, it may revert to a more normal mix of upper and lower case lettering. I cannot comment on the usage at Frederick Street, but at William IV/Trafalgar Square each kiosk averages about 100 sessions per day. Smaller offices about half that.

The comments on the Norphil blog site has now added some information on the "pulled" Cattle items. It seems that they may be genuine and that the engineer was called on to adjust the printer. Kiosk A1 was at session 259 at 12:37 on the Friday. The examples on e-Bay are around sessions 300-305 which would suggest Friday pm. Apparently the "fault" was witnessed. Thanks to Ian and those who commented on his blog.

Adrian12/10/2012 16:45:22
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So does the Hytech kiosk give strips of six or do none of them and can you only get those directly from Royal Mail?

John McCallum13/10/2012 16:33:44
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Hytech kiosks give a collector's strip of six.

As I understand it, the Wincor can be programmed to cut after six stamps but I think that the reason that five is the normal is historical - there were initially 5 values in the collector's strip.

Re Frederick Street, Edinburgh. It became operational on 1 July 2009. On 23/4/10 the session number was 15523, on 20/10/11 it was at session 43932 and your report of session 63774 on 10/10/12. This allows me to make guesstimates on the usage of around 65-70 sessions per day based on the last two session dates. (Earlier dates suggest 52 and 63 sessions). I base the estimate on a 300 day "year" for the kiosk to be available to the public.

This should now be enough to give a minimum estimate of the turnover of this kiosk - 300(days) times the average daily session times the postage rate (second class). This doesn't take into account higher postal rates for other services and sales of non-stamp items such as bubble-wrap and stationery since the introduction of the V2 software about a year ago.

The actual turnover is commercially confidential and, I suppose, of no importance to stamp collectors. But what is of interest is the actual popularity and convenience of these machines. The fact that you found the kiosk at Frederick busy shows that the technology has been accepted and the units are easy to use.

John McCallum13/10/2012 16:51:56
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I have uploaded images of two cattle FDC - one Wincor and the other Hytech. I have also put on pictures of the Hytech at the last three Stampex. See Post and Go album.

Adrian13/10/2012 16:53:13
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I'm not much of a maths man but I don't quite follow your minimum estimate paragraph. I don't remember the kiosk having a second class option at all, so shouldn't your minimum estimate be based upon the first class rate?

Anyway, glad to see the info is of some use! I had a look at the list of all kiosks and should be able to get to a few more before the year is out, such as Paisley (just maybe), Glasgow (hopefully) and York and Durham (both surely). Also, when next in Edinburgh I'll make a point of also visiting the St James Centre kiosk and I do get to Dundee as well, once in a blue moon. It's fun this!

smiley

John McCallum14/10/2012 14:38:29
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On the first option screen you have the option to "Buy Stamps" or "Post an Item". The first option gives you the fast stamps. The "Post an Item" option then asks you to put the item on the scale. What follows depends on the service you require. It is in these options that second class items can be posted using a post and go label. I'll add images of the original "Horizon" style version and the current "Smartstamp" format to the photo album.

300 days x 65 sessions x 50p gives a minimum estimate of turnover if everybody using the kiosk at Frederick Street a second class PAG. Change the 50p to 60p to give it based on the first class rate.

John McCallum14/10/2012 14:54:27
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3lavender.jpg

Second class Post And Go. This example is from Lavender Hill (019001). (Out of the main entrance of Clapham Junction, turn left and walk a couple of hundred yards - just past the superstore).

The main difference between the PAG and the smart stamp is that the Smartstamp includes a 2D barcode square.

John McCallum17/10/2012 11:55:51
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White Frama but not from Windsor. After the experiment ended, a Frama was placed near the entrance to the National Postal Museum which was in the King Edward Building. Quality of print, as evidenced by the example here was poor. All whole pence values were available (if you had sufficient small change which, infortunately, I didn't have on a very hurried visit).

npm 002.jpgla

Julia Lee17/10/2012 13:52:36
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Hi John,

Have you read the Frama feature in the latest issue?

J

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