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IBM-Neopost Automatic Postal Centers (APC)

 

 The USPS experimented for a time before the APC became distributed nationwide. Note that while meter collectors collect these, they are technically not "meters".  They are considered "stamps" that can be used anywhere and at any time. Generally the "meter" is usable only in the city of issue and on the date printed (while there have been exceptions to this rule). At this time there are about 2500 APC's in operation.  Their locations can be found at www.usps.com on the "Find a Post Office" Page.  A USPS document from 2004 lists all planned locations:

APCLocations.pdf. (9mb file)

 

Some images and information used with permission from Joann Lenz.   www.stampsjoann.net

Some images and information used with permission from Craig Selig. www.pnc3.com/cvp

 

Click on the image to see the full-size view, then use your Browser's 'BACK' button to return here.

IBM-Neopost Type 1
(click for larger view)
Type 1

Type 1 was used from 1/10/99 to 1/6/01. The "143" at the end of the long number was the machine number.


IBM-Neopost Type 2
(click for larger view)
Type 2

Type 2 has microprinting of the word "Neopost" above the orange line.  These is also a fluorescent "N" near the words "Date of Sale". (not visible in these images).


IBM-Neopost Type 3
(click for larger view)
 Type 3

Type 3 is identical to Type 2 except that the label has rounded corners..


IBM-Neopost Type 4
(click for larger view)
Type 4

The fluorescent "N" and microprinting are absent. This type was used until April 2004 when the APC was rolled out nationwide.


APC Stamp (w/o "APC") April 2004 Scott CVP54-55

Postal Service Designation under Bar Code

(click for photo of an APC Vending Machine)

APC Stamp (w/ "APC") November 2004 Scott CVP56-68
Postal Service Designation Under Value

 

First Day Use of Second APC Design 19 November 2004

(MSSB vol 56 #4 Winter 2004/2005)

 

 

APC Stamp (w/vertical serial number) October 2006

Tentatively Scott CVP69


APC

The APC was introduction in April of 2004. Stamps could be purchased as singles or groups of five. The stamp is dated with the "Date of Sale" but may be used anytime and anywhere in the US, much like a traditional postage stamp.

In November 2004 (19 November may have been the First Day) the letters "APC" began to appear vertically near the pink strip and the format changed. On this day printing options changed to allow only single stamp printing.  This change also is reported to have initiated the Minimum Postage Fee discussed below.  The first two letters of the number below the barcode usually indicates the type of postal service

In October 2006 the serial number moved to a vertical position to the right of the stamp. This may only appear when the full mailing label is printed.

The stamp can be printed with or without a designation of the type of postal service.

Values printed can follow strictly the service type and weight of item and this is how Scott catalogs them.  Stamps can be printed in any amount desired to accommodate items that already have stamps but need more postage.

Joann Lenz

Craig Selig

APC

The APC vending kiosks also allow the user to print complete mailing labels that contain the APC postage indicia. The labels vary due to the requirements of the postal service used.

These vending labels are available for each of the three types of APC designs shown above.

Craig Selig

(click each image to view an enlargement)

APC stamps and Receipts During the 11 Cent Fee Period

Images (c) 2006 all rights reserved

APC Fee Period

Starting on 19 November, 2004 the APC's in US Post Offices were set to charge a Minimum Postage Fee for First Class Mail (FCM) for the first oz.  The APC would print a 50 cent stamp for the 37 cent postage plus the 13 cent fee.  If the FCM item was over one oz the fee was not charged.  Also, if the item was over one oz and the customer indicated that there were stamps on the envelope/parcel but more postage was needed, then the APC would print amounts smaller than 50 cents and no fee would be charged.  Some collectors used this as a way to trick the APC to print values smaller than 50 cents.

Thus, from 19 November 2004 until 8 January, 2006 while the FCM rate was 37 cents, the fee was 13 cents. After 8 January when the FCM rate became 39 cents and until 4 March 2006 the fee was 11 cents.  The fee was discontinued ca 4 March 2006 after collectors and users complained.  While a 50 cent stamp from this period most likely paid a fee, the best way to demonstrate this is with the receipt.

Joann Lenz


02/10/2013


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