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

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Working with Machin stamps

Working with Machin stamps

Machins. You either love them or hate them.  I have experienced both phases, and I would describe my current relationship with Machins as ‘deep fondness’. My first touch with Machin occurred as a kid when my uncle’s fiancée was in London and sent some mail that were franked with 10½p yellow Machins.   Since then my collection of Machins has grown to fill a single 32 page stockbook.

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“Technik und Landschaft” Series

“Technik und Landschaft” Series

Date of  Issue: Aug 01, 1949. Stamps from this series can be found anywhere. One reason for this is that large numbers of some of the denominations have been produced, and another might be that these stamps never expired and can still be used today (this also serves as a reminder that the Swiss currency has been very stable over many decades).  Some of these stamps were amongst the first ones in my childhood collection. I liked them then, and I still do today. I do think that they are beautifully crafted, and in my opinion the design is timeless – it still works today, almost 70 years after they were first introduced.

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A review of Spink Maury Timbres de France 2016 (Kindle edition)

A review of Spink Maury Timbres de France 2016 (Kindle edition)

I admit I have got very mixed feelings against technology. As a geek I love building and trying all sorts of new and shiny digital things. But as an end user however I am likely more preserved and demanding than most casual users. A good example of this are eBooks. I have had Amazon Kindle subscription for some time, but I really have not used it that much besides few random titles. I just find it slightly awkward to use when compared to traditional touch interface (of pen & paper). As such I’ve been holding back for some time on writing this review of Spink-Maury ‘Timbres de France’ 2016 eCatalogue which I acquired earlier this year  to learn more about Type Duval postage due stamps.

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“Eidgenössisches Kreuz” Series

“Eidgenössisches Kreuz” Series

The stamps in this series are considered “classic stamps of Switzerland” (note after #27 in the 2008 Zumstein catalogue). The classic period ended in 1907 with the first three values of the “Tellknabe”. Many of these stamps are common; however, a number of different versions exist which differ greatly in value. Zumstein as a specialized Swiss (and Liechtenstein) catalogue provides the best classification.

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Postal tax stamps always have got a purpose

Postal tax stamps always have got a purpose

A common source of moaning and groaning with many modern era stamp collectors is that there are way too many stamps without a purpose, and they are mostly nothing more than pretty pictures. No doubt there is certain truth to it, but there is one group of stamps which defies the sheer blandness of commercialization. Postal tax stamps are, as their name suggests, a tool of taxation and their issuance and usage is often times strictly governed by legislation and real world needs. With this post I’ll dive in with the history of Chilean postal tax stamps.

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Chalky vs ordinary stamp paper

Chalky vs ordinary stamp paper

I admit that I am slightly out of my comfort zone when it comes to question of chalky vs. ordinary (or more widely speaking coated vs. uncoated) stamp paper. It is not so much that I would not know the technical difference and a number of ways to spot the differences, but the fact that interpreting the results is always subjective to number of factors, not least of them being personal experience.

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Sometimes old stamp catalogs are better than new ones (and vice versa)

Sometimes old stamp catalogs are better than new ones (and vice versa)

Progress is a double-edged sword. Look no further than any stamp catalog at your bookshelf . Though a lot of things (like paper quality) have improved in stamp catalogs over the years, I am confident that you (like me) also miss a lot of things that publishers have wiped out in name of progress. As an example here I’ve chosen Algerian 1966/71 Emir Abdelkader stamps and two editions of Michel catalogs with 17 years in between.

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Twice the fun with two-part stamps, or why half the stamp is sometimes better than none

Twice the fun with two-part stamps, or why half the stamp is sometimes better than none

The world of modern postage stamps is filled with all sorts of wacky stuff such as transparent stamps, stamps with cookie odor (sadly no taste included), or stamps printed on bizarre materials. But one of the most versatile and longest running oddball practices has been creation and usage of two-part stamps.

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Algerian Setif,Guelma,Kherrata stamps of 1975

Algerian Setif,Guelma,Kherrata stamps of 1975

In 1975 Algeria issued seven stamps in commemoration of the the 30th anniversary of uprising against the French colons (settlers) in provinces of of Setif, Guelma and Kherrata. In addition, a surcharged version of one of the values was released in 1978. Though general catalogs don’t tell much on these stamps, there’s once again much more than meets the eye.

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Every stamp tells a story or more

Every stamp tells a story or more

They say, somewhat correctly, that every stamp tells a story or more. As such it is pretty amazing that many stamp bloggers (yours truly included) experience writers block from time to time. I think Stephen King, godfather of modern horror literature, nailed the cause perfectly when he once said “Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work”. As a blogger and stamp collector I admit that it is hard, maybe impossible to make any progress unless I feel inspired by the topic. If there is something I’ve learned over the years, it is that looking at alternative angles can make a world of difference in how fun (or unfun) something feels like.

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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, 2009-2017 unless otherwise stated. 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