Inkjet Printers used by Posten AB between the years 1998-2003.
Posten AB started to use its first Inkjet Printer for stamp cancellation in 1998, just before Christmas.
The first test was made in Gothenburg with a picture of Poseidon and ”Posten Sverige” and date to the right. It looked very much like the old PVI stamps made of metal which were used earlier at many of the Postal Centers.
Pitney Bowes U 700
After a short while, the software and was changed so the picture of Poseidon got frames and soft corners, five wave lines. The round ”Posten Sverige” (Postal service of Sweden) was changed to a small image of a postal horn, the symbol of the Swedish postal service. This type of machine was also used in Malmo, Norrkoping and Uppsala.
The Siemens IRM and SRM sorting machines are capable of both sorting the letters and cancelling the stamps. The printer or stamp consist of two units, an upper and a lower inkjet nozzle. The ink tank is common for both nozzles. The cancelling stamp is very similiar to the previous version. However, the Siemens stamp has no rounded corners, it also has eight wave lines and a slightly larger postal horn compared to its predecessor. The lenght of the wave lines could be 20, 40 or 60 millimeters, depending on the size of the envelopes. The Siemens machines were installed at all the 12 Swedish Postal Centers at a rate of about one Postal Center a month. The first known test of the Siemens machines was made on February 20, 1999.
May 17, 1999 was the official starting date of the ”Sun” of the Tomteboda Postal Center with IRM 101. It was followed by the Uppsala ”Cathedral” on June 17, 1999 with IRM 106. The Malmo ”Alley” appeared shortly after on June 28, 1999 with IRM 114.
During September-October 1999 a new type of software were installed. The original eight wave lines were reduced to five with a lenght of 20 or 40 millimeters.
In December 1999, Posten installed another new software. The wave lines disappeared on the smallest envelopes, size C6. Larger envelopes got wave lines with only 40 millimeters lenght.
Malmo probably was the first Postal Center to install the software which took away the frame around the picture. It happened on March 1, 2001. Instead of wave lines, there are eight dots printed. In addition to this, the five wave lines were reduced to four at some Postal Centers. By that time, it started to get a litte bit difficult to keep up with the looks of the cancellation stamps. For example, on July 7, 2003 the Göteborg Postal Center still had the frame and the five wave lines on their IRM 111. The SRM 112, at the other hand, printed no frame and just four wave lines.
Occational cancellation stamps
Three times, Posten has made a time-limited change of the motifs. During the EU summit held 2001 in Göteborg, the summit´s symbol were used from June 13, 2001 and during the rest of that week.. From December 9, 2002 to December 22, 2002 all Postal Centers should be using the text message ”GOD JUL OCH GOTT NYTT ÅR” (MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR) in their machines. The same thing happened a year later, 2003-2004. However, it is not quite clear if all of the Postal Centers used the seasonal text.
Finally, there are individual differences to the normal looks of the cancellation stamps.