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Europe/Great Britain : Machin cancel questions

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oldtriguy1960
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30 Apr 2013
06:13:42pm
I have a trade partner that asked if I had any GB Machins with CDS
(Circular Date Stamp/cancel). I started looking through my Machins and have started to find some for him, but then got to wondering if there is anything special about Machins with CDS or partial CDS that show the day/month/year? Or if there is any special appeal to Machin collectors for ones that have CDS/partial CDS? I also found one with a clear CDS that used green ink for the cancel so got to wondering if a green (or other color) CDS cancel held any special appeal to those that collect Machins?
I don't really collect Machins (yet) but have a bunch that I had sorted per the Adminware site's criteria, and some yet to be sorted. Then I got to wondering if there were any free album pages for Machins?

Thanks for any inputs...

Dave N.

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Poodle_Mum
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30 Apr 2013
06:58:29pm
re: Machin cancel questions

Charlie is your guy in that department. He's our walking Machin encyclopedia Applause

Kelly

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khj
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30 Apr 2013
07:37:47pm
re: Machin cancel questions

Adminware has a free Machin album covering the basic Machins.

I'd also be interested in knowing if there is a more specialized free Machin album. My Windsor Machin album is sadly way out of date.

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oldtriguy1960
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01 May 2013
06:50:20pm
re: Machin cancel questions

KHJ,

I have not found any other free Machin album pages other than the one you identify.
However, if I'm not mistaken, I think that Bill Steiner's Stamp Album Pages for GB contained a section for Machins.

Dave N.

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khj
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01 May 2013
09:03:09pm
re: Machin cancel questions

Dave,

Yes, Steiner has 20+ pages for the Machins (not counting regionals). It's been quite awhile since I subscribed to his pages, but my understanding is that he no longer allows his pages to be freely distributed -- I am open to correction. So technically, his album pages are not free.

As you also have noticed, it appears the adminware pages are the only well-established pages that are free.

Let's see what Charlie or the others can tell us...


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cdj1122
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Silence in the face of adversity is the father of complicity and collusion, the first cousins of conspiracy..
02 May 2013
10:54:31am
re: Machin cancel questions

I was checking for someone who has produced a free set of Machin pages, because I am reasonably sure I saw some on one of the Machin websites, but simply cannot find it. So that leaves Adminware's simplified set the best free bet.

Dave Arthur produced a more advanced digital Machin set of pages;
Stamp Collector

Most of the specialized Machin Collectors have the"Complete Deegam Machin Handbook" which contains a set of "Profiles".
They can be downloaded for each possible variation. The profiles can be trimmed and added to Vario Pages alongside the appropriate stamp or in a row awaiting the discovery of an example of that variation. Some collectors mount the profiles on album pages and affix the stamps either atop the profile or along side it.
This is an example of a typical Deegam profile;

Image Not Found -- Image Not Found

At a glance, Machin affectionadoes can see that the stamp displayed, or being sought has the following characteristics;

Printer's name; HARRISON
Type of Paper / Gum; Harrison paper using Dextrin gum
Phosphor bands or bars; 2 bars, short at top & insert inward from left; with B3 9.5mm bands
Type/value setting & DOP; Type 2, low value ; Head B2; printed sideways right
Stamp Source and cylinder; Decimal pane DP-132, from cylinder B3
Notes; Specialist information from the handbook if any eg; perf variations
Deegam Handbook number No.; 200 = 20p (divide by 10); 9th variant at level 2; 1st variant at level 3
The edges show the way the perforations are on the actual stamp.

Lest the beginner feel that that is way too much information, the profiles also provide a more simplified set so that the user can start with the basics and then as variations are discovered or acquired add the more involved profiles to the album.

The Deegam site adds the following by way of explanation;
" .... Profiles provide great flexibility in arrangement. Mount each one alongside its stamp and in the same manner. You can arrange and re-arrange your collection to suit you -- move the stamp, move its Profile! No rewriting is ever necessary. Acquire a new stamp or a variety and there is a Profile for it. Unused Profiles can act as check lists or portable wants lists. No other system offers such ease and flexibility. Win awards for your collection with Deegam Profiles! ...."








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cdj1122
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Silence in the face of adversity is the father of complicity and collusion, the first cousins of conspiracy..
02 May 2013
11:28:35am
re: Machin cancel questions

" .... I have a trade partner that asked if I had any GB Machins with CDS
(Circular Date Stamp/cancel). I started looking through my Machins and have started to find some for him, but then got to wondering if there is anything special about Machins with CDS or partial CDS that show the day/month/year? ...."


What is special about CDS's is that they do show the place, date and time of usage.

There are as many ways of collecting Machins as there are Machins, or almost as many.

Many are passionate about mint unused examples (Never in the same room as a hinge)
Others accumulate blocks and even try to match cylinder numbers (plates numbers)
For me, and an equal number of Machin Maniacs, postally used stamps, preferably with a light non-invasive cancellation are the most desirable.
And then some collectors want examples that show when and where the stamp was used.

OH, did I forget the folks who collect Machin's used on covers or on FDCs ?

I have, and seek, not just postally used but examples of all CDS's because sometimes there is a question about which of two very similar Machin's I am looking at, but being from different plates produced at different times, a CDS can be used to compare with a partial cancellation which can confirm the date of a printing.

Plus, I am a hopeless romantic and love to have, not just Mschins, but older issues cancelled at some place in Great Britain that is mentioned in on of the novels or history books.

If you are wondering about value, that is a very much more complex issue. I'd say that since Machins can be acquired by the pound or kilo for a small sum, recently about $20 per kilo (Two pounds) unless you are certain of some particular significance their dollar value is, at best, minimal.

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oldtriguy1960
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03 May 2013
08:41:09pm
re: Machin cancel questions

For your viewing pleasure...

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snowy12
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04 May 2013
07:21:03am

Auctions - Approvals
re: Machin cancel questions

Here's a nice cover with a block of 4 of both Wildings and Machins with son cancels .

Image Not Found

Brian

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michael78651
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SOR Auctioneer
04 May 2013
01:12:16pm
re: Machin cancel questions

Kim is correct, the Steiner pages can not be printed and distributed without license.

He does have pages for the Machin issues, including the regionals, and also the Wilding issues. I was thinking of printing them out, thinking that my Scott pages (Specialty and International pages were incomplete). I found the Scott pages to be almost complete so I didn't print them out.

If you'd like to get a recent CD of the complete set of Steiner pages, you can. Just win the stamp ID tournament. It is in the Championship prize package.

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malcolm197
07 Nov 2014
12:51:59pm
re: Machin cancel questions

Right I am going to put the cat among the cds pigeons. Cds ( circular date stamps)can also mean "counter date stamps" - steel stamping devices used to cancel stamps at post office counters/windows. These are the most desirable ( and about as common as hen's teeth !!).Most of the cancels shown in the previous post are either date slugs from automated slogan postmarks fortuitously centred on a stamp( sometimes as part of a multiple stamp franking)or (rubber) packet handstamps applied at sorting centres on oversized or other "awkward" packages - and are stretching the term "CDS" more than a tad. The double ring stamps are definitely cds and are usually applied at very small post offices out in the sticks - but not very often.

99.99% of modern stamps ( 1920s onwards ) are cancelled mechanically by wavy lines, slogan postmarks, or most recently inkjets. The most you can hope for these days is to have a cancellation that leaves more than 50% of the stamp visible - and to be honest most of those are due to underinking or other shortcoming of the machinery.

If you have money to burn you can obtain cds by underpaying a letter, taking it to the post office and having a label issued for the additional amount to pay the correct rate.The postal clerk SHOULD then hand cancel your adhesive stamps ( Not every employee knows this). The letter then enters the mail stream and may collect a slogan as well!

Malcolm

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greenmouse
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07 Nov 2014
01:57:10pm
re: Machin cancel questions

If you have a friendly postmaster you may get it done free ie cancelled by favour.

Image Not Found

Those shown here are counter date stamps. My postmaster is a great chap.

Tim2

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philatelia
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07 Nov 2014
03:37:42pm
re: Machin cancel questions

Is there a proper name for those intertwining circles on the outer part of the cancel? They are very attractive. I might get an MPP modeled after those.

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2010ccg
07 Nov 2014
07:37:36pm
re: Machin cancel questions

Great discussion on Machins...I have a neat collection although new to Machins they have been my passion for the past year. My question is ( Is there a simple way to identify the different printings of the same valued stamp??)... Color lightness...significant or slight changes to the Queen`s portrait. Some heads are quite light and others considerably darker. HELP...Cheryl

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cdj1122
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Silence in the face of adversity is the father of complicity and collusion, the first cousins of conspiracy..
08 Nov 2014
10:44:31am
re: Machin cancel questions

" ... ( Is there a simple way to identify the different printings of the same valued stamp??). ..."

Simple answer:
Yes,
No, and,
Maybe.

(Yes);For certain color values there is a simple characteristic that allows a quick, simple sorting.
(No);For many color values there have been multiple printers using similar color plates. What might indicate a Harrison printing for that color value may be useless when sorting a different color value.
(Maybe) If one has mint examples of certain color values, the gum may hold the simple key to differentiate printers.

The Euclidian dictum, " .. There is no royal road to Geometry. .." applies to Machins.

Beside the obvious differences betwixt issues, color, value, size and shape, there are a few characteristics that are checked by Machin affectionadoes::
Printing method,
Head plate used,
Direction of printing,
Value type,
Perforation or straight edged
Phosphor type,
Phosphor application (Whether in the paper or on its surface0),
Fluorescence,
Printer's margin mark (if attached),
Gum, ( if a mint stamp ),
and what is often the most useful,
Head and value setting.

In the example of the Deegam Profile I posted earlier in this thread, the 20p Black stamp (DG200.9.1)issued in October of 1989 had two main varieties, one having two phosphor bars, the other (DG200.8.1) had none.
So in that case as far as Scott is concerned the primary sorting is easy. Hold the stamp angled so that regular light glances off the stamp and look for the two Bars.

However both varieties have several sub categories that interest the more detail oriented collector.
The first, without phosphor bars (DG200.8) could be from a sheet of stamps, a booklet or one of two coil types. It might or might not have a straight edge.

The other black 20p type is from two different panes and could be sorted by the head type, T2b/B2 or T2b/A1b.

If someone wants to go one step further this issue (DG200.9 ) on the variety T2b/A1b the bars may be 11mm or 10mm apart which ware designated DG200.9.2 and DG200.9.2a
All together, Cheryl, you could have six or seven interesting variations fairly easy to see and display.

( Actually the Deegam Handbook lists about 20 variations of a black 20p stamp but that gets a bit more complicated.)



Name; HARRISON
Type of Paper / Gum; Harrison paper using Dextrin gum
Phosphor bands or bars;[b] 2 bars, short at top & insert inward from left; with B3 9.5mm bands
[b]Type/value setting & DOP;
Type 2, low value ; Head B2; printed sideways right
Stamp Source and cylinder;[/] Decimal pane DP-132, from cylinder B3
[b]Notes; Specialist information from the handbook if any eg;[
perf variations
Deegam Handbook number No.; 200 = 20p (divide by 10); 9th variant at level 2; 1st variant at level 3

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cdj1122
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Silence in the face of adversity is the father of complicity and collusion, the first cousins of conspiracy..
08 Nov 2014
10:57:23am
re: Machin cancel questions

Yes, I did write that beyond that point things become complicated because once the different ideas and abbreviations we use are grasped the primary sorting is fairly simple.
My advice to beginners at Machins sorting a large accumulation is that if in a group of any one color value being sorted there appear differences to the naked eye, there is a very good chance that they are by Deegam Standards different listings. It is just a matter of having the information available in the Handbook and being patient.

" .. There is no royal road to Mastering Machins. .."

I like that.

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malcolm197
08 Nov 2014
10:18:28pm
re: Machin cancel questions

Just to complicate matters even more - there are a number of unlisted shades, particularly of the earlier decimal values- so you cannot always use the shade to determine the type.

For example the 10p (biscuit colour) and the 14p(steel blue) have an enormous range of shades which bear no correlation to their source( and smaller numbers of shades appear on other values from the same period). The most modern issues are the most consistent - shade differences are almost all connected to technical changes in production and identified - there is now much more consistency as expertise has improved in matching ink,controlling paper absorbtion etc. There are also some variations in the thickness of the phosphor bands which are not given philatelic significance but are obvious to the most casual glance.

A long wave and short wave u,v, light are both necessary the short wave for the phosphorescent mechanisation features and the longwave for the background flourescence.If you collect printing flaws as well there is an almost unlimited number of stamps available.

I by no means consider myself a specialist but I have 3 spring back albums bursting at the seams plus another of regionals, and I have several thousand stamps to examine yet.

Health Warning ; Machins can be addictive !!

Malcolm

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2010ccg
08 Nov 2014
10:46:22pm
re: Machin cancel questions

Thanks Charlie I am as confused as always but little wiser...I am going to enjoy sorting through the stamps that I have and compare them to the samples I have.....my goal is to see how many variations I can find for one stamp at a time....This may take me the rest of my life...but it will be fun!!!!

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cdj1122
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Silence in the face of adversity is the father of complicity and collusion, the first cousins of conspiracy..
09 Nov 2014
12:12:01am
re: Machin cancel questions

Malcolm is exactly right;

" ... there are a number of unlisted shades, particularly of the earlier decimal values- so you cannot always use the shade to determine the type. ..."

My advice in this matter was directed toward members confronted with a large batch of Machins trying to do a basic sort. If it looks different, assume for the time being that it is different and as details and techniques are discovered and learned a further examination in the light of new knowledge will help determine whether an observed difference is a Deegam difference or a shade variation, an area that even Doug has chosen to avoid, because there is no objective standard that can be applied that will set the limits as to when a different shade is a different issue or not. I personally fid shades fascinating despite the potential of laving changelings in hand..

You are also right, Malcolm, I had avoided discussing the infra red or ultra violet light usage as that would needlessly complicate that comment and also will be discovered in time.

My problem was to try to explain that there is no universal trick to apply to all the 500 or so color/values that will differentiate between all printers at all times. If there were the forty seven consecutive year old series would not present the challenges and rewards that it does.

The more one plays with Machins, the more one learns about them, and that knowledge can often be applied to other series of stamps. That is why reading the entire Volume One of the Deegam Handbook is so useful.


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2010ccg
09 Nov 2014
07:19:31am
re: Machin cancel questions

Thankyou Charlie and Malcolm... I understand that stamp colour can vary with every printed sheet BUT ..I noticed in the Machins with no border there were several differences in the Queen`s crown.... Walsall printings were missing a dot in the crown.. in the clear white area .. and the neck lines are smoother with De La Rue`s printing...Prior to 1981 I believe stamps were printed by Harrison & Sons and after 1981 there were 3 different printers ......... Questa printings seem to be have the Queen`s portrait much lighter in appearance. Or am I mistaken in my observations??

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malcolm197
09 Nov 2014
12:12:47pm
re: Machin cancel questions

You really don't want to go into the different printers unless you use them to differentiate stamps at a particular known date. The problem is that along with most corporate entities these days there have been mergers and take- overs plus De La Rue using 2 (or 3 depending on whose information you are using) different factories. You should use the physical attributes of the stamps themselve to identify the printers rather than trying to do the reverse..Photo are mostly Harrison ( but some are Enschede ) while Litho can be Walsall,de la Rue, Waddington,Questa or Cartor - however some of these are actually the same printer( at some periods), but printed at different production sites.

If you are going into Machins in a big way you need to have a stock book of easily identified control copies to compare your aquisitions to , before you start ploughing through your albums.Once you have ID on your control copies many of the UV different papers- OCP,FCP,ACP and PCP can actually be recognised by eye if you have them side by side.Some values are easier to tell apart than others for example the 2.5p pink OCP and FCP are obvious

Malcolm

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2010ccg
09 Nov 2014
03:31:07pm
re: Machin cancel questions

Thankyou Malcome...my head is spinning..lol I do have a few samples to help when sorting thanks to a friend in England.....and I will continue to search for additional ones I guess I will work on distinguishing litho from photo....That is stressful enough for me at this point...

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malcolm197
11 Nov 2014
09:42:42am
re: Machin cancel questions

A tip when looking for shades or paper types ( not just Machins but anything).

Examine in full daylight( an hour or so either side of midday, a longer period in summer ) under a north-facing window ( in the Northern hemisphere ).Direct sunlight distorts colour perception as well as not doing your stamps any good !!

Malcolm

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snowy12
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12 Nov 2014
10:11:17pm

Auctions - Approvals
re: Machin cancel questions

Would Machins on FDC's help in identifying some of them,just a thought ?
Brian

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malcolm197
13 Nov 2014
04:51:01am
re: Machin cancel questions

FDC s are a problem. Royal Mail does not recognise all changes as "new stamps", and hence does not service FDCs. You are right that FDCs is a great help in ID for the stamps that FDcs are issued for - but for others not. FDCs assist in producing "control" copies for comparison purposes.

For some Machins the first day of issue is not known - only a first known date of use. With any dated stamps you can identify what stamp it isn't, but not necessarily what stamp it is!

Anything dated can elliminate any stamp first issued after that date. Regrettably several versions of the same stamp are often in circulation simultaneously (even disallowing anyone's remainders being used up), and so you must use other methods to discriminate between these, for stamps first issued before the postmarked date. Additionally 95% of Machins have either slogans,wavy lines or ink-jets just to make life difficult. The standard format for postmarking was to have the date stamp clear of the stamp for id.purposes leaving the slogan or wavy line to cancel the stamp. Unless you have the dates that various limited use slogans were in operation this is unhelpful. General postmarks like "Pass on your postcode" are usually in use for years.

The upshot of this is that there are no "short-cuts" in identifying Machins. The overriding thing to remember is that ,despite the arrangements that are made for collectors ( almost incidentally), these are REAL stamps made for REAL use on REAL mail -in other words what stamp collecting was originally about.

Malcolm

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cdj1122
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Silence in the face of adversity is the father of complicity and collusion, the first cousins of conspiracy..
14 Nov 2014
03:22:23am
re: Machin cancel questions

As noted a date of issue or usage does not define, in all case, the specific Machin variety, but it will eliminate any issue printed at a later date for obvious reasons. SOTNs would be very useful this way, except for the fact that a well centered circular date stamp will usually block being able to see clearly the key elements used to idntify different printings

Something that is useful to determine which issue one Photo stamp came from is the "DOP", That is Direction of Printing. For example, a Harrison stamp produced by photo will have very small trace marks along the four borders. One edge will have slightly pointed traces of the ink that points in the direction the sheet, coil or booklet passed through the rollers of the printing machine. At the opposite border the edge will nave slightly rounded ink traces.
If that puzzles anyone check this discussion in our "Click Here"
These ink traces are also visible along the border of the numeral.

As you scroll down you will see several scans showing the ink traces quite clearly.

One problem with checking the DOP is that its significance was discovered and tabulated by the author of the Deegam Complete Machin Handbook so if you do not have a copy you would have to ask someone who does about a specific stamp.
However a glance though the titles of the discussions at our Machin Forum, such as the link provided above, and you will see several that deal with similar queries from members and registered guests.Who actually become members by registering, haha.

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malcolm197
22 Nov 2014
11:37:04am
re: Machin cancel questions

One thing about dates of issue. There have been many cases where stamps have been pre-issued by specific post officers in error, and also it is not unknown for daters not to be changed, so it is probably unwise to assume that stamps used up to 7 days before the official issue date are necessarily the previous stamp. Also issue to post offices as opposed to philatelic outlets depends on previous issues being sold out.

I have aquired in the past kiloware which usually dates from a fairly narrow period, so when you look at a whole batch of stamps of the same face value it is usually quite simple to sort them out. Note you should always do your uv checks before you soak the stamps.

Malcolm

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phos45
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14 Feb 2017
10:17:03pm
re: Machin cancel questions

some free albums here ...
http://www.gbstampalbums.co.uk/

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cdj1122
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Silence in the face of adversity is the father of complicity and collusion, the first cousins of conspiracy..
17 Feb 2017
07:04:58am
re: Machin cancel questions

They look very nice, Mack, and will certainly be a boon to a lot of budding Machin collectors. For some the arrangement will be fine as it follows the general way some catalogs list issues, by date and by printer. There are about twenty two or so pages with the stamps neatly identified up to 2015, I think, that is comprehensive.

But there-in lies a problem. Many pages are cluttered with about 30 stamps in order by value, which will drive some collectors crazy when they come upon a stamp that is clearly different in some way from one already mounted. Where to insert it, or; " have I misidentified it somehow."
That leads to a second problem that Catalog publishers have been grappling with for years. A color value will be spread out over several pages. For instance, examples of the 1p crimson can be found on pages #s 2, 5, 13, 16, 20, 21, and #22 as it was produced by different printers using different techniques over forty years.
I'd have liked more room such as separate lines for different color values so that when some different variety is found it can be mounted on the same line or at least on the same page somewhere. But i suppose the designer wanted to keep it from growing to sixty or a hundred pages.

Adminware provides three options, a similar simplified version that is free to download, a more advanced version that leaves spaces for more varieties at a modest cost and a third version that covers just about all currently recognized varieties, which costs a bit more. And if I remember correctly each Adminware version can follow a similar date and printer order, or the much more comprehendable "Color Value" grouping so that using that same 1p stamp example, all 20 varieties variations are on the same page or adjacent pages. That is, of course, similar to the Deegam copyrighted numbering system.

Anyway, this "album" seems worthwhile although many Machin collectors will out grow it quickly.

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phos45
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17 Feb 2017
12:25:11pm
re: Machin cancel questions

most collectors I have met are novice or basic level .... I use value pages, as my stocks are in ziplocs.

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malcolm197
26 Feb 2017
06:31:39pm
re: Machin cancel questions

I may come across as considering myself as somewhat of an expert, but far from it - I am admittedly not a complete beginner, but I am a long way from having total knowledge of the subject.

It is a fact that in order to progress beyond absolute beginner you have to have contact with lots of stamps ( the more the better), and play about with them to familiarise yourself with them - because no amount of catalogues,websites or advice on here is a substitute for handling stamps.

As an example I have read and looked at websites for years to try to differentiate between sheet,booklet and horizontal and vertical coil stamps, and while in theory I could have ID d them with ease I just didn't get it. Suddenly the penny dropped and going through all my duplicates I have already identified another dozen or so varieties for my collection. I also had problems with flat bust and high and low curved bust pre-decimals( as a beginner don't even go there), and again the light has shone and I am about to go through all my duplicates yet again. The fact is that it is only by repeatedly looking at lots of ACTUAL stamps that led me to the ability to tell them apart.

One thing I would add is that you have to ration the amount of time you spend on these stamps at a stretch. You need to concentrate, and concentration for too long is counter-productive. After about an hour on one task I have to go and do something else -soaking worldwide kiloware for example !

Malcolm

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Charlie2009
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27 Feb 2017
02:38:53am
re: Machin cancel questions

How very true Malcolm !

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TuskenRaider
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27 Feb 2017
05:31:18pm
re: Machin cancel questions

Hi Everyone;

@ malcolm197;

I'm so glad you posted that reply. I think that is the very best advice for collectors, especially beginners.

I quickly learned that watermarks on Argentina and Brazil, could be very challenging and started to amass as many copies of each face different as I could, especially multiples (pairs, blocks etc.).

I can then use these to help me identify as many different watermark varieties as possible.
This would also apply to differences of paper; thick/thin, wove/laid, porous/hard etc. The best way is to actually see and handle them to get the knowledge of what to look for.

No doubt Washington/Franklins would also benefit from your approach.

Great post!

Just sortin'....
TuskenRaider

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cdj1122
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Silence in the face of adversity is the father of complicity and collusion, the first cousins of conspiracy..
28 Feb 2017
12:28:03am
re: Machin cancel questions

" .... The fact is that it is only by repeatedly looking at lots of ACTUAL stamps that led me to the ability to tell them apart. ...."

This also explains why Machinistas are adverse to selling, trading or giving away any of those envelopes full of duplicates lying in a cabinet drawer gathering pixie dust.
Suddenly that mythological light bulb lights up and it is good to have stocks to re-examine in the bright flash of wisdom.

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".... You may think you understood what you thought I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you think you heard is not what I thought I meant. .... "
oldtriguy1960
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07 Apr 2019
09:28:03am
re: Machin cancel questions

Any know cross references from the Adminware sorting criteria to Scott #s or SG #s?

Would sure like to have one. I have been sorting mine by the Adminware criteria, but for trading purposes etc, would like to be able to identify them by Scott #.

Dave N.

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sheepshanks
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07 Apr 2019
10:32:25am
re: Machin cancel questions

Do not think they cross reference too easy but a download from Norvic Philatelic might help with the security machins.
http://www.norphil.co.uk/
The basic Machins probably can be sorted but SG goes into greater detail than Scott. Might be easier to pick up an older Concise catalogue.

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