We are pleased to announce that our little experiment has successfully concluded. Nonstandard / oversize lettermail in Canada has worked well for ink exchanges with the standard Kcat/ Dillo vials mailed in a standard size envelope with adequate postage ($1.18)
I sent two vials (one full and one empty) to each both Goldwiki and Strang, who received the vials intact in different areas of the country. They filled the other vial with some ink in exchange and sent it back to me the same way. All four mailings made it to their destination. We also exchanged some writing samples along with the inks.
We sealed the vials with tape around the cap and put it into a ziplock baggie to prevent leaks. Then it was taped tight between two pieces of cerial box. It weighted less than 100g, so I stuck three old 48c stamps on top because I didn't have any $1.18 stamps. Strang and goldwiki used the $1.60 international stamp.
Because Canada Post specifications are that Nonstandard Oversize envelopes can be at max 38 wide x 27 long x 2cm thick, I initially intended to try the full size 8.5x11 envelope. But unfortunately it wouldn't fit in the 15cm wide slot at the top of our neighborhood locked mailboxes made for the regular lettermail envelope. I'm sure it would be possible to mail more vials this way at once than I tried but I only had four to spare for these tests. 5 full vials only weigh 50g and should still only cost $1.18 (but if for whatever reason it weighs over 100g, it will cost $1.96 for up to 200g) Maybe once I get more vials I'll try doing a bigger Canadian lettermail ink exchange with 5+ vials at once. I'm also thinking more now about paper exchanges.
Now that I know this, it appears a cross border ink exchange could be done with Nonstandard & oversize Letterpost up to 100g, sent to the USA for $1.96 worth of stamps.
Thanks again to Strang and Goldwiki for taking the time to give this a try.
Edited by dimeotane, 24 February 2009 - 02:57.