cddstamps on stamps

my thoughts on stamps, stamp collecting, philately in general and maybe a few other topics !

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Hello, first a big thank you to Charlie for such an informative comment yesterday on the Machins. I hope you get time to read his text as it certainly will help anyone looking at Machins and trying to identify coil versus other issues. Thanks Charlie.
Something different today, only because I found this in some stamps I was looking at.

Anyone know anything about this. Not a postal stamp as such but still interesting, well to me as one country I have collected over the years has been Rhodesia, that is Southern, Northern and Rhodesia itself. That is another story maybe.

Look forward to your comments. I'll research over next few days if get sometime. Busy here with New Year'e eve tomorrow - Hope you get a chance to see the Sydney fireworks.. they will be spectacular as always :-) then a BBQ party at my place on January 1st. :-)

Happy New Year to everyone.. Best wishes.. Michael

Monday, December 28, 2009

Machin at auction

Hello, I was browsing an auction site today and found this.

Listed for opening bid at 5c (US) with a comment that the Scott listed price was 20c. This had me thinking about something to write about. The Cat listed value for these stamps is really just a "price to cover a cost" in my view. Any price at 20c means - as I say, in my view - there is really no value to the stamp. I have no idea how many were printed but you can expect many millions and everyone has one or a hundred!! I have over 200 in my stock album (and many more in unsorted boxes) and one day maybe I will even study them. One day eh!! Basic SG price listed in the 2009 simplified catalogue lists the 1 centre band at 35p and the 1 side band at 70p but I really think these are, lets say, exaggerated, and at best, for very fine used.

So my commentary here is that this and many, many, many other Machins that you might see listed individually at auction should not be purchased for 5c but in bulk lots at less than $0.1c or less per stamp. That is not to acknowledge that there are many Machins with good catalogue value, but you have to know exactly what it is you are looking at and thinking of buying.

Here is a scan of two stamps I picked from my stock.

Yes they look different because they are. This 11½p stamp issued in 1981 had a few printings, or varieties you may say. I won't bore you with details as I am sure I do not know all there is to know since I am not anywhere near an expert in Machins but you will find they were mostly issued with one centre phosphor band on fluorescent coated paper with PVAD gum (stamp on right). There was also one centre band at left(stamp on left), and one centre band at right, both from 50p booklet panes, and from different value booklet panes at that!

Oh yes, and there was a coil issue with one centre band. How do you tell the difference. Beats me :-)

Best wishes and happy new year. May stamp collecting in 2010 give you enormous enjoyment.


Saturday, December 26, 2009


Merry Christmas, and happy holiday season to everyone.

I received some lovely stamps from Glenn in Canada

- have a look at his excellent blog Gems World of Stamps

Timely as I rode the other day.. will be a while until next ride as legs are not as young as they used to be :-) still, I had a great time and the horse did everything I asked for.

as for stamps I have been sorting a few over the holidays, how relaxing. No major finds but a few more for my children's corner.

Best wishes, Michael

Sunday, December 20, 2009

a different postmark !!!

Hello, I picked up my mail today and found this. Quite surprising really. Have a close look. :-)

Mailed from in the USA. Can you see what is "wrong"
Here is full envelope - I deleted the sending address.

Somehow it got through both US and Australian post.

Have a great day, Michael

Friday, December 18, 2009

more on postmark quality

Hello, I was browsing an auction site earlier today and saw a few of the GVI high values I showed as my example a few days ago for postal franking quality. I thought I would show you a few stamps I saw. Let me first say I realise there are many people out there who are just trying to sell some stamps to make a few bucks and are really genuine. But then again there are others, again trying to make a few bucks because they found a collection or got left a collection of some sort - you only have to read their byline to know. In fact one seller I read made it clear their view on the quality of what they were listing was "uneducated" (their word not mine). They are probably a real estate agent in their day job, or a used car salesman.. oh that is cruel of me :-) Anyway, not sure that gives me any confidence in buying from them; does it give you confidence? I would suggest not. Another seller has the name like grandmastamps.. it was not actually that, but again that does not give me confidence. I am too unkind maybe? especially when you see some of these sellers have hundreds if not thousands of sales to their name. The good news is 90% of what I saw listed was pretty good looking material and reasonably described. Have a look at these...

You would have to be an idiot to buy this first copy. sorry, but it is garbage.

This next copy is quite clean and while the postmark is not detracting from the stamp it does look a bit grubby, that is dirty.

Not unexpected for this stamp I might add as it was largely used on parcels back then and did tend to get dirty in transit. But ok to have although note the centering is not that good. Now I wrote on centering some months ago. And I mention this because it is a good example where you have to look at more than one quality attribute.

And finally another bad copy.
Why would you buy this from an auction I do not know. Perhaps because you are not aware you can get these free from me or in my GB Specials or in great condition from some really reputable GB dealers websites for the same price as I saw it listed at auction.

I hope this has been of interest and educational to you. I welcome all feedback, critical is even more welcome as I learn as well.

Best wishes ... Michael

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Fine, average, poor

Hello, today has been exciting for many of us / you because the Boeing 787 Dreamliner made its maiden flight. I was up at 4:30 so I could watch it live on the internet. Yes maybe I should get a life but hey it was worth it. Later I saw the landing. Very nicely done, so congratulations to all at Boeing for finally getting a remarkable plane (more than 50% composite materials by weight)in the air :-)

My aviation and aerophilately blog has some pictures and a video and more will follow tomorrow but for this blog I was very pleased to read one comment about how useful my comments and writing are. So I am inspired to write :-)

I thought it would be useful to show examples of Fine, Average and Poor postmarks.

After all, catalogue prices are for Fine used, so if you are collecting or helping new collectors do let them know the importance of the quality of the postmark. The scan above shows three copies of the GB GVI High Value Green issued in March 1942. It is a very common stamp and the SG catalogue value is £1.50. That is fine used. However lets take this a step further. Let say you needed this for your collection - it was an additional 2/- 6d issue, the 1939 issue - the first issue of 2/- 6d value was brown in colour. Anyway, the catalogue price is as I say £1.50 but if you have a look at any decent GB dealers website you will see it listed for sale as Very Fine Used at 46p or thereabouts. So moral of story; if you need something and you want to buy, make sure what you are buying has a very very very nice postmark. I'm leading up to saying there have been and probably still are many examples of this or whatever stamp you select for that matter that is for sale - on various auction sites - and the postmark is pretty average to aweful yet the listed price is the uneducated sellers view based perhaps on the catalogue. Use a reputable seller, or dealer web site. You will be very upset in times to come to find your purchase is not worth diddly squat!!!! Or, I cannot help myself, I have to add this, buy from my web site GB specials, or if a child or collecting for a child (eg your son or daughter) get them to write to my Children's corner - this could be theirs for free.

And, if there are any topics you want to hear me write about, please add a comment.

Best wishes... Michael

Sunday, December 13, 2009

150th Anniversary of the Penny Black

Hello, a few weeks ago I wrote a piece on this issue. While sorting some material over the weekend I came across this lovely MS.

Issued on May 3rd 1990 it was sold at a premium of 80p for the benefit of the "Stamp World 90" exhibition funds. Lovely don't you agree.

This was a gift to me from my good friend and fellow IPDA Director Roy Simpson when we last met in the UK, far too long ago. Roy writes the Machin Mania blog and if you have not read it recently I suggest you pop across and have a read. His latest piece is very entertaining.
Best wishes, Michael

Saturday, December 12, 2009

writing ......... why

I am getting bored writing to myself.. Anyone reading??? I know I have not written for a few days.. well more than that.. but I have no incentive..if no one is reading why am I writing?
There seems to be such apathy out there these days.. I read some stamp boards and so few people are participating... Why?? what is happening?

Are we all time constrained..??

I am still writing my aviation blog even though readership is low.... I want people to read these blogs, so they learn (have you any idea how many sellers out there are screwing innocent buyers) and enjoy (that is what this is all abount isn't it?)

what is everyone consumed with these days? Tell me I would really like feedback

Best wishes... Michael

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Horses....... Now for snakes

Hi.. I saw this beautiful snake today while walking on the property...... probably the same baby I saw many months ago but it has grown. Still young mind you :-) So thought of snakes on stamps. Only found one in my Australia stock and using SG Australian catalogue for reference. This is SG 799 from the 1981 Wildlife issue. A nice block of 4 I found,

A lovely set of stamps by the way. If these interest you I may show some more over coming days.

My snake is a bush python - well that is how we refer to it. I am happy to be corrected. I have seen one as thick around as if you hold thumb to thumb with two first fingers touching - if you see what I mean and over 2 metres in length. Beautiful to see and quite harmless, well except to the chickens and rats and mice I guess :-) Here is a picture of the whole snake :-)

Have a great weekend. Michael

Horses ...on stamps and for real

Hello, yes been away and apology for taking so long to write again. I got back to Sydney from the US on Monday but just couldn't think what to write about for this blog. But today my neighbours mare had her foal and I thought, yes, horses on stamps.

Apart from stamps and aviation, as you may know I have a passing interest in horses!! Hope you like the picture. The foal - a colt - is 3 hours old in this picture. Stunningly beautiful. As for stamps well I thought I'd show the Horses of Australia stamps.

I think I showed these some years back but they are nice to see again. Maybe you like these. They are in a presentation pack and will be a Christmas present from me to you if you are the 4th email to with the answer to this question and you include your mailing address. What is the name given to the wild horses of Australia?

Oh.. and I do have a Christmas Competition... but you will have to read it on my aviation blog.. cddstamps on aviation

Best wishes... Michael

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