Buyers Beware !.

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When it comes to stamps, I wonder if you have noticed the continual amount of damaged stamps being offered with notations such as see picture for condition, or offered as is etc. When I see this I usually do not bother to look as there are sure to be faults. If you buy an item and it is damaged and it does not state this fact, then return it. A good stamp will have good perforations all round with no thins and be well centred, so its worth checking the perfs as there are too many sellers getting away with selling [or trying to sell] inferior stamps]. With just one short or pulled perf, or one tiny thin, or maybe a light crease, will always de-value a stamp, and to me damaged stamps are worthless and not worth collecting. Only rare stamps are sometimes collected in this condition and used as space fillers.  You would'nt buy a table or chair with a leg do not buy stamps with missing perforations.  ALSO, isn't it amazing the amount of sellers that write "old stamp" or "old collection" or something similar, trying to pretend that they do not know what they are selling. If you took these stamps to a dealer to sell they would not be interested and pull your collection to pieces and state ie: that ones got a thin or a short perf, or maybe a heavy postmark etc. So make sure you are getting a good item for your money. Don't take the write up for granted.....check it out yourself....or forever after you will be sorry.  Always try to buy from proffessional dealers, as it is probably their living and they can't afford to offer inferior items if they want to build up their clientel and have customers return. Another point worth a mention is....where are all the fine used stamps, as all I see lately is mint mint and more mint. I like to collect fine used stamp, as they have been used for the purpose which they were intended for, to prepay the postal fee. A nice fine used stamp [light postmark or cancel] covering no more than a quarter of the design, are always desirable to me and will always hold their value, more so than mint stamps. So unlike many other collectors, I do not collect mint stamps unless they are unavailable in used condition. I am also amazed at the prices of some items, and wonder where on earth do sellers get their prices from. Some probably think they have got a real winner, but look again and there are no bids. The good items will always sell well, even if the starting price is a mere 99p. And why is early material so expensive ie: Line engraved issues like 1d blacks etc. There are literally thousands of them about, even 4 margin examples. What most people dont know is that there were well over 68 million 1d blacks issued, and well over 10 million of these came from from plate 1. Even if say, 50 million were lost or damaged or uncollectable, there would still be plenty to go round. Check out Rikki Hyde's little book called Numbers Issued, 1840 - 1910, you will find it a great help when deciding what to pay. OK, digressing a little but hope you get my point, SO BEWARE.  







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