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Stars In Machine Cancel Dial?

 
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Posted 11/13/2020   6:06 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add DonSellos to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
Do the four stars in the dial of this NYC machine cancel have any significance? I don't recall seeing them before.

DonSellos
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Posted 11/13/2020   7:03 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rod222 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Unknown.
As an aside, and in an early broad based context, these were known as "devices" or "Fleurons" to balance the impact of the hand held cancelling hammer, and strengthen the face.
http://goscf.com/t/69031 br /
In your example, no idea.

wiki
A fleuron for example #10086;, is a typographic element, or glyph, used either as a punctuation mark or as an ornament for typographic compositions. Fleurons are stylized forms of flowers or leaves; the term derives from the Old French: floron. Robert Bringhurst in The Elements of Typographic Style calls the forms "horticultural dingbats". It is also known as a printers' flower, or more formally as an aldus leaf, hedera leaf, or simply hedera symbol.
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Edited by rod222 - 11/13/2020 7:12 pm
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Posted 11/15/2020   6:28 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add DonSellos to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks, Rod, for your response. Looks like the only one I am going to receive. I'll chalk the presence of those stars up to a desire for symmetry and aesthetics, or making the wording in the dial look balanced.

DonSellos
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Posted 11/15/2020   7:12 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Glenn Estus to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Contact the Machine Cancel Society: http://www.machinecancel.org

This forum may not have the members who have the expertise to correctly answer the question. You asked the question less than 2 days, who do you expect a quick answer. Sometimes philately is like a good restaurant not a fast food place.
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Posted 11/15/2020   7:35 pm  Show Profile Check paperhistory's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add paperhistory to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The stars in the NY dial typically are seen on philatelic mail (flight covers and such). it was probably a special service or "overflow" machine but I have not studied it in particular.
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Posted 11/15/2020   8:52 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add John Becker to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
An early draft copy of the Machine Cancel Society's listing of "United States Slogan Cancels, 1899-1940", lists this 4-star dial paired with the airmail slogan from Feb 6, 1929 to May 10, 1930.

I agree with Paperhistory, that stars in dials typically represent temporary, replacement-for-maintenance, or experimental uses - philatelic mail would be such a typical case. One of the challenges in large post offices is finding a way to identify the machines (like those needing ink, feed adjustments, date/time correcting, etc). Often this was accomplished by a number in the killer bars. This doesn't work as well when generic slogans are used - like the airmail slogan. Numbering the dials is a nice solution. The stars serve the same purpose - they permitted the rapid identification of a specific machine.

While the stars can be seen as decorative today, I disagree with the theory that the stars are for added strength or symmetry. Countless symmetric dials from short town names exist, which have no extra graphic elements. The steel dials rotate on a shaft and roll against an ink-saturated inking cylinder made of felt and then against the paper mail pieces moved along by rubber-faced rollers. The canceling dies don't touch anything hard to create damage or much wear to steel. Many dials are used for decades.

Here are two other star-dials from New York City on non-philatelic mail, which may indicate use as a temporary replacement machine while one is off for repair (just a guess):



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Edited by John Becker - 11/15/2020 8:54 pm
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Posted 11/15/2020   9:25 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rod222 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

I like it when the answer is not really conclusive,
and members offer their opinions.
Interesting Post Don,
It maybe hours, weeks months, but no doubt, one member shall have chapter and verse.
SCF rarely remains unsolved.

PS: I checked my only reference re machine cancellers (Luff?)
None were evident with stars in that.

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Edited by rod222 - 11/15/2020 9:27 pm
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Posted 11/15/2020   9:50 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rod222 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
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Posted 11/16/2020   08:30 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add DonSellos to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Thank you paperhistory, John Becker, and Rod, again. Very helpful information.

DonSellos

Edit: Thank you Glenn Estus for your suggestions.

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Edited by DonSellos - 11/16/2020 09:12 am
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