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Asia/China : Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

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Ningpo
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18 Feb 2015
10:04:04am
This is really directed at those who collect the Hong Kong QEII definitive issues from 1992 to 1997, in particular the 1992-94 Scott 630 – 645 (SG 703-717). Here’s a sample of what I’m talking about:


Image Not Found



As you probably know, there are 28 values in the set issued in 1992. But with phosphor banding variations of certain values, there are actually 42 unique stamps.

The situation extends further if the later issues are taken into account; another 17 values comprising 33 stamps including those from booklet panes. I haven’t given catalogue numbers as this is where my Scott 1997 does not list all those that are in Gibbons.

To me, these definitive issues are a nightmare, made worse by different printing methods and I do question the thinking behind them. It seems that someone got very excited with the concept of phosphor banding and lost the plot.

Getting them mint is no problem as there’s a surplus on the market in the form of pairs, blocks, panes and even sheets. However, to find these used has been a challenge, particularly as I will only accept a CDS cancellation. I refuse anything with the ‘wavy line’ portion of machine cancels.I also avoid any obvious CTO cancels. I know I have made a rod for my own back, as most mail receives machine cancels these days but that’s the way I collect.

Regardless of the type of cancellation used, numerous ‘values’ are as rare as hen’s teeth. I spent a couple of hours the other night trying to find certain values on eBay, Delcampe and Ebid. Now I do accept that finding anything from certain booklet panes is nigh on impossible, as these were contained within prestige booklets, so I ignore these anyway.

However, in many instances my searches turned up zilch. Now as these are low catalogue value stamps, I would have expected them to be listed in significant quantities.

Are any other collectors experiencing the same difficulty? Or am I the only one to bother with these horrors?
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cocollectibles
18 Feb 2015
10:33:55am
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

My KGVI and QE2 HK collection is purely representational; that is, as long as I have one mint and one CDS (preferably SON) canceled stamp of a design, I'm happy. I do get more detailed about variations, errors, and cancel types with QV to KGV stamps.

I have the set you pictured, mint and used, but again only the main design.

Peter

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"TO ERR IS HUMAN; TO FORGIVE, CANINE."
TuskenRaider
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18 Feb 2015
11:35:27am
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

Hi Everyone;

It probably has a lot to do with the fact that they are not worth much as far as catalog value
goes. So most sellers will not waste time on them. Delcampe doesn't even want them on their
site period. They place a 18¢ surcharge on every sale, over-and-above the commissions.

Your only hope is huge Kiloware lots, and hope to find a few in there and sell what you don't
want to keep your invested cash at a minimum. Probably very few collectors of that issue are
as picky about cancels. Most collectors want light cancels, at least I do.

Just thinkin'....
TuskenRaider

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Ningpo
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18 Feb 2015
12:03:48pm
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

I understand your position on such material Peter because of your focus on early issues. I'm actually surprised that you even bother with this stuff.

It does seem that all of the QEII definitive issues cause more identification difficulties than all the other reigns put together (what with variations of watermarks, gums and printers). For such a small country, the stamp issuing authorities seem to have made things unnecessarily complicated. I guess though this is the challenge.

I just hope there might be other collectors of this later material, who could offer their views.

I hope this might illustrate part of the problem. Below is a scan of about 95% of the low values that I have accumulated over the years. I haven't bothered to sort these, as I know that I cannot possibly have every variation; as illustrated by the lack of $2.50 and $3.10 values. I wonder if my sample is illustrative of the scarcity of some of this material. Or perhaps because of my obsession with cancels, the sample is distorted.

I'm just very surprised that issues that are really the equivalent of GB Machins, are so thin on the ground:


Image Not Found

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cocollectibles
18 Feb 2015
01:49:34pm
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

I was born in British Hong Kong, and left when I was 13 when we went to Canada. My interest back then therefore was to collect every stamp of HK which, to a 13 year old seemed possible, is nicely illustrated by this example as being improbable, if not impossible. Later in life, when I resurrected my collecting interests, I maintained my interest in HK through 1997, but focused on the earliest issues. Collecting treaty port cancels, HK cancels on foreign stamps, foreign cancels on HK stamps, and HK coins soon followed as other areas of collecting to honor this former British colony.

I will watch this post with interest; I do hope you find out more about this issue.

Cheers,
Peter

p.s. if you know where I can get a genuine 96c olive bister QV stamp, mint OR used, let me know and my collection will be complete. Happy

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"TO ERR IS HUMAN; TO FORGIVE, CANINE."
sheepshanks
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18 Feb 2015
05:12:58pm
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

Ok, have been through some old kiloware from the 1990's and echo Ningpo's hard to find values. My breakdown is as follows;

10c-27
50c-15
60c-3
70c-11
80c-16
$1-16
$1.70-18
$2- 30
$2.30-41
$5-18
$10-6
$20-3
$50-3
There are possibly more in lots still unsorted but they will have to wait their turn.
Assume the missing and low count figures reflect postal rates at the time.
Bearing in mind my kiloware came from a UK charity back in the 90's. Yes I'm just starting to sort through what is probably 10 large boxes, mainly Machins and Uk commemorative's.
This list includes some that will no doubt be thrown out as damaged.

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Ningpo
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18 Feb 2015
05:43:26pm
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

Yes, your comment about postal rates is spot on as far as sourcing your material from the UK is concerned.

I'd imagine that many of the values I'm looking for are lying in unsorted boxes of kiloware in Hong Kong itself.

The high values are usually not a problem in the UK because of international postal rates. It's the tiddlers that are so evasive.

I just wonder how many other countries have as many as 28 different values in an issue (never mind the phosphor band varieties).

Incidentally, the stock card showing all the small format definitives, shows at least one example of each of the 28 values (excluding the 3 large format ones). This will present a problem with album presentation in the future, particularly as I have 7 Hagner pages so far, containing this issue, not including those used ones and a complete sheet of the $5.

I may have to hive off this section of QEII into a separate album, where the album itself costs more than the stamps it contains. Oh good!

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Ningpo
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18 Feb 2015
05:59:32pm
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

Just got a message from Victor (Sheepshanks), here's part of it:

Quote:

"Most of the ones I have are machine cancelled although some with cds but no coils. I have not checked for phosphor etc."



Thanks Victor for checking for me. And you've just mentioned yet another variation I had forgotten about; those damned coils.

So actually,there are a further 10 values in the first series alone that were produced in coils. So now we have 52 unique stamps.

As only one in five coil stamps has a number printed on the back, these are usually sold in strips of five. So yet more album space.

By the way, excluding one or two of the coils, I have everything mint in the two series, (or at least, all that I want), including booklets and sample panes.

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Ningpo
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18 Feb 2015
06:15:31pm
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

Here's an example of those pesky coils:

Image Not Found

I just checked the SG catalogue for the $3.10 value (not this coil type) and this what I found:

1992 Photo Enschede P14.5 x 14


713d $3.10 orange-brown, black & pale blue tone, one centre phosphor band (2.9.96)

then..

1993 - 97 Lithography Leigh-Marsdon Ltd P14.5 x 14


759d $3.10 orange-brown, black & pale blue tone, one centre phosphor band (2.9.96)

Oh goody! Let's see how good I am at distinguishing photogravure from lithography. Surprise


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bobstew617
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18 Feb 2015
07:24:06pm
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

Ningpo,

I collect this set also, but have it in mostly MNH condition. The 3 high values and a few others I do not. I have decided not to concentrate on the varieties of this issue, as I am having enough fun with the year varieties of the QEII and Waterfront (1987-1991).

Yes, HK is maddening At Wits End at times, but that is what makes it interestingThinking, I think!!

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Ningpo
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18 Feb 2015
09:08:50pm
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

Yes Bob, I know what you mean. I have only recently resurrected the 1992-1997 'Machins'. I had been sitting on them for years, concentrating on the 1987-91 'Skyline' series as you have.

At least identification is much more straight forward, in that three of the five issues have dated imprints.

I have moved on, as I have completed the 'skylines', with the exception of about four used low values. Strangely, these were much easier to obtain, even without the internet. About 90% of my used copies I bought from my local stamp fair. And I managed to maintain my own standards of 'only CDS cancellations'. I take it we are talking about these? :


Image Not Found


This is the 1988 issue, with 'light shading under chin'.

The whole Queen Liz era is actually much more difficult than most would imagine. The 1962-1973 Annigoni's are a major challenge, particularly if you delve into the glazed paper issues and gum arabic versus PVA. There is a seemingly vast number of missing colour varieties too.

Following on, the 1973-1976 'coinage' issues can be frustrating. Different watermark types within issues (or no watermark at all) and the varieties; inverted, crown to right, crown to left). The list goes on.

If I was to give any advice to a new Hong Kong collector with limited budget, I would try to direct them to forming a specialised QEII collection. The purchase price of most QV, KEVII and GV material is now out of reach of most collectors. Even GVI is slowly heading that way.

QEII material is 'manageable' if a longer term view is taken. This also extends to postal history of the same era. Starting a collection of covers from small Hong Kong post offices will be a wise move. Most of the post offices that were around in the 1960's, 70's, 80's and even 90's are now gone. I think only two branches remain (in name) from the 1930's.

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Ningpo
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18 Feb 2015
09:44:05pm
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

TuskenRaider wrote:

Quote:

"It probably has a lot to do with the fact that they are not worth much as far as catalog value
goes. So most sellers will not waste time on them. Delcampe doesn't even want them on their
site period. They place a 18¢ surcharge on every sale, over-and-above the commissions.

Your only hope is huge Kiloware lots, and hope to find a few in there and sell what you don't
want to keep your invested cash at a minimum."



Just seen your post. You have very valid points. Not being a seller myself, I don't appreciate the finer points of selling on these sites. Is the 18c surcharge a 'listing fee', like that charged by eBay?

This does seem to explain the reluctance of sellers to bother with this type of fodder.

You have though just jolted my memory. I have a huge bag of on paper kiloware in my attic (I know, it shouldn't be left there), which is about 3 kilos in weight. All of it Hong Kong QEII. From memory, a proportion of it consisted of this very issue. I think I dismissed most of what I looked at because of cancellations. However, many of these were actually cancelled by rather fancy slogan type cancels, like '100 years of the Fire Brigade' type stuff. Perhaps this type of material might be a compromise.

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michael78651
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18 Feb 2015
10:34:01pm
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

Remember, stamp collecting is fun!

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Ningpo
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18 Feb 2015
10:50:05pm
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

Did I imply it wasn't?

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TuskenRaider
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18 Feb 2015
11:09:27pm
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

Hi Everyone;


Quote:

"Ningpo wrote;

Just seen your post. You have very valid points. Not being a seller myself, I don't appreciate
the finer points of selling on these sites. Is the 18c surcharge a 'listing fee', like that charged
by eBay?"



This fairly recently added fee is not a listing fee. Listing is still free. However when a listing on
Delcampe sells, they charge the 5% commission + 18¢. 5% of a 20¢ listing is nearly zero, so
they add 18¢. This kills any profit for sellers of items less than a couple dollars or so.

They also threatened to cancel without notice any listings that receive few views over a set
period of time, and lots that receive many views, without any bids. they have really become
quite arrogant about their site.

This has turned off many US buyers, as so many listings are in French, plus with the new rules,
they are starting to look more like eBay every day.

Just some observations....
TuskenRaider
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TuskenRaider
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20 Feb 2015
09:40:53am
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

Hi Ningpo;

Here is another thought. If you have that many of something, maybe you could list some nice
cancels in approvals. There are lots of collectors that really call themselves stamp collectors,
but who are actually cancel collectors.

But you should find many good ones in there. But you may not want to soak them unless you
intend to add to your collection, otherwise sell on paper, that is close cut. I like to use an
X-acto paper cutter for trimming and for US cut squares (postal stationary).

I think your collection of HK Machins is really beautiful, and I can understand your extra effort
as being well worth the time.

I have many Great Britain Machins, with about 200-300 town cancels that I will list on approv-
als eventually, so collectors like you can enjoy.

Keep on sortin'....
TuskenRaider

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Ningpo
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20 Feb 2015
09:52:18am
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

If you were referring to that bag of kiloware, you have a good point. I hadn't even considered that option.

As for the many collection duplicates that I have, the cancellations would probably not be of interest as they are mostly partial. However, they could be listed as just good to fine used.

But following on from a point you made earlier, about Delcampe sellers not wanting to list these low value stamps, I don't think I could face listing these here piecemeal. I would rather group them into small lots, so perhaps the auction would be a better venue.

I appreciate your comments and advice.

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bobstew617
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20 Feb 2015
09:58:33am
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

Ningpo,

Yes, that is the set I was referring to. That is a nice page of the 1988 variety--interesting you have a few pairs there as well. I really need to go through what I have and see what I am missing. I have some in a stock book also which I need to compare against what is in my albums.

I have to admit that Scott did make my life a bit easier when they decided to list and value the year varieties of that issue.

Regarding the Annigoni set, I have a hard enough time with identifying the watermark varieties, let alone paper and gum. BOB

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Ningpo
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20 Feb 2015
10:10:49am
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

Bob

It is worth keeping an eye out for partial doubling of the black printing, on the large format 'skyline' values. These sometimes slip through on used material. I haven't any myself but I have seen them. There is a Hong Kong eBay dealer who has had a number but only mint. However, it's all down to cost, as with everything else.

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Ningpo
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20 Feb 2015
10:15:44am
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

@Tuskenraider

Here's a large proportion of duplicates, of my 1982 definitives. This issue is my personal favourite of the whole QEII reign. These as you can probably see, would not be of interest to cancel collectors:

Image Not Found

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TuskenRaider
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20 Feb 2015
12:34:17pm
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

Hi Everyone;

Might still be worth listing tho, if you don't need them.

Keep on sortin'....
TuskenRaider

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sheepshanks
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08 Mar 2015
11:25:02pm
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

Image Not FoundImage Not FoundImage Not FoundImage Not FoundOk have finally got around to sorting the soaked stamps and getting them on pages, amazing that with all the duplicates I was unable to complete any year set, and why is it that when you only have one example it turns out to be damaged in some fashion.
Anyway after a few hours sorting and use of the short range glasses here's the result. Now to work on finding the missing stamps and then the watermarked earlier issues.
VicImage Not Found

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michael78651
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08 Mar 2015
11:44:38pm
re: Hong Kong 1992 definitives; a question for collectors

Just a side note - if anyone was wondering what Steiner pages look like, those are it.

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