SCB Stamp Collecting Blog - the premier resource for exclusive stamp information and news

For a long time I’ve been thinking about writing a review of William.E. Steiner’s Stamp Albums Web but haven’t really gotten around it. But let’s give it a go… In short the deal is simple and sweet: worldwide stamp album pages for yours to keep and print for only US$30.

The good part of Stamp Albums Web is the price. Single-country pre-printed album series from the likes of Davo, Lighthouse/Leuchtturm cost notably more than the entire Steiner’s offer. And instead of single countries, Steiner is providing worldwide album pages – a total of 71,000 pages. It sounds like a true bargain, but is the deal as good as it sounds?

IMHO a lot depends what is printed, and how it is handled afterwards. If everything is printed at home using a laser printer on high quality acid-free heavy paper and stored on quality binders, the total cost will easily arise up to 12,800€ (nearly 19,000 US dollars) (see the article article about DIY album pages for details). Using an inkjet would very likely increase the total costs by 20-30%, while giving the printing job to commercial dedicated printer would cut the costs (as they can acquire acid free heavy paper on bulk rate).

Very few however need all the pages at least in one go… So I’d say that this is still a very attractively priced offer, especially as the album pages contain many countries not found in commercial album offerings.

Stamp Albums Web's offer is a huge pile of PDF files. Here are just some of the letter A.

Stamp Albums Web's offer is a huge pile of PDF files. Here are just some of the letter A.

The other area of interest is of course the question about quality. Nothing this cheap can’t be of good quality, right?

In general, I find the pages to have a very simple, but working approach. The layout and descriptions of stamp issues are both very clear and straightforward. If something should be criticized about the layout, it is the excessive use of white space on some pages.

A sample of an average album page with spaces for Malaysia/Johore stamps.

A sample of an average album page with spaces for Malaysia/Johore stamps.

But (yes, the dreaded BUT)… The catch is that the pages are very heavily based on Scott catalogues. And Scott is very likely the worst possible source for a European worldwide collector like me. It can lack complete issues/sets and details listed on Michel, Stanley Gibbons and Yvert (the most common stamp catalogues used outside US). If the difference was just few random issues, I would not mind. But sadly it is in the range of tens of thousands listings, if not more.

Another dreaded issue is the level of detail. The pages are sometimes very generic and have places for as such. Take for example Czechoslovakia’s first issue. The album pages do provide places for imperf. and perforated set, and even list various perforations. But there are no separate places for all the different perforations. It makes the pages more compact, but it’s also bloody annoying IMHO.

I like the fact that album pages are provided as unprotected PDF-files. They can be customized using programs with PDF editing features (such as Adobe Acrobat Professional or Open Office 3 pdf-plugin). It’s not a pleasant task, but it is the only way to overcome some of the existing faults.

What’s the final verdict? IMO this is one superb offer if You ever intend to place your collection on album pages. The pages are also a very good deal if You plan on making your own custom pages, as they provide a handy source for stamp measurements and details. Very likely I will use slightly modified Steiner’s pages to house some portions of my collections when they reach the 99,5% completeness level.

Subscribe to free newsletter

Click here to subscribe the weekly newsletterSign-up to SCB newsletter and get notified when new articles like the above are published at Stamp Collecting Blog. The email-newsletter is sent to Your inbox one to four times a month, and it contains a summary of new entries and discussions on the blog, as well as a short behind the scenes editorial.

Your email address:

There are 30 responses for this entry, click to read the responses.

Leave a new response

All responses are moderated before publishing. Responses should be respectful of other voices in the discussion and remain on topic. All buy/sell messages will be deleted, as well as questions about stamp values (you can always get yourself a stamp catalog from public library, or get your stamps valued). If You want to share an picture/photo, use the Insert image option below. Please share only images of items that you own/have in your collection. reserves the right to edit or delete comments that violate these policies.

And finally... A small IQ test. Please click the picture that is NOT a postage stamp. Then press the "Submit Comment" button below images.

Stamp imageStamp imageStamp imageStamp image

All original content and images of this blog is under copyright protection; any kind of reproduction of full contents without permission of the owner is hereby denied. All Rights Reserved © Keijo Kortelainen, 2009-2016. All photos of stamps in this blog are enlargements or reductions of original stamps from private collection of author of the blog (unless otherwise stated). The designs of stamps and postmarks are copyright of issuing postal authorities and their designers. The comments / discussion on this blog are copyright of their retrospective authors, and represent the opinion of their authors. When submitting content of any type to this Website, you agree that you assign to this Website and its successors perpetual and unlimited license free of charge to host, store, publish, reproduce, publicly display or otherwise use any content and materials of any type provided or contributed by You. Catalog numbers (Scott, Michel, SG etc) are the copyrighted property of their publishers. | See our privacy policy