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United States/Stamps : About reperforations ...

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carlberky
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15 Dec 2014
03:09:47pm
Does anyone know how they go about doing it? Do they use a hole punch or some sort of mechanical devise? Seems like it would be pretty labor intensified, and would preclude use on low priced stamps.
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Anglophile
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RPSL, APS, EPA; US, GB, Ireland, British Europe, Italy, Mauritius Classics
15 Dec 2014
03:34:33pm
re: About reperforations ...

While not answering your question directly, the following article has extensive related information.

http://www.philatelicfoundation.org/educational-resources/research-articles/reperforation/

I expect that a lot of it would be done with professionally made perforation machines that have been acquired by private business for legitimate purposes. For example, perforation is used in the production of business forms all the time by legitimate private printers. You can imagine the fraudster finding a way to use the perf machine over at the print house of his uncle or brother-in-law, late at night or on weekends, to fix up a couple of dozen stamps in the hope of reselling them falsely for a few hundred bucks.


(Modified by Moderator on 2014-12-15 18:26:26)

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Bobstamp
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15 Dec 2014
06:53:34pm
re: About reperforations ...

An infamous case of forgery right here in Vancouver involved Canadian "OHMS" (On His Majesty's Service) official perfins. The forger got hold of a perforator that had been used in making Canadian perfins, and started creating new ones. Since they were made on an "official" machine, they really can't be differentiated from actual perfins. The forger, I understand, actually went to prison for his crime.

For members who aren't familiar with OHMS per fins, here's a set currently on eBay:

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One interesting aspect of collecting perfins is this: Since perfins were intended to prevent unauthorized use as postage, they were not sold to the public, so any mint copies in the philatelic marketplace or in collections are stolen goods.

Bob

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cocollectibles
22 Dec 2014
09:32:11am
re: About reperforations ...

Just curious Bob, how did they detect the forgeries if he used an "official" perf machine?

Peter

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philatelia
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22 Dec 2014
10:56:00am
re: About reperforations ...

yikes! I just listed some of those! I hope I haven't put forgeries in our auction! If they are used - they aren't forgeries, right?

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cathotel
22 Dec 2014
02:58:30pm
re: About reperforations ...

Bob raises a question I hope he or another member can clarify (though we are now north of the 49th with this "U.S. stamp" thread). I wish I knew the answer to the concern raised by "philatelia," as I know Bob is quite right about many faked OHMS perfin officials being out and about. My question: how safe am I with my working assumption that if the perfin holes on the upright legs of the H and M are not perfectly aligned I am looking at a genuine official perfin? If Bob then can answer the question as to how the counterfeits made with an official machine were detected, I might be somewhat closer to a level of comfort in attempting to fill gaps in my collection of such official issues (and better able to determine how many times I have acquired a "weed").

Thanks in advance for any clarification the collective expertise of StampoRama can offer!

Tom

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Bobstamp
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22 Dec 2014
04:42:25pm
re: About reperforations ...

I wish I could respond more definitively (!) to your questions. My knowledge about the War Issue OHMS forgeries is second-hand, but from the best-informed collector I've ever met personally.

I would be surprised if any of the forgeries were used postally, so used War Issue stamps don't seem to be likely candidates for identification as forgeries, especially since the perforation process no doubt required full sheets of stamps. However, I can easily see bogus covers being made.

At my stamp club a few years ago we had a speaker, Ken Pugh, who is an expert on forgeries; he told us about a Canadian who was selling bogus Canadian covers on eBay, using real stamps and his computer to make genuine-appearing used covers. The speaker contacted the seller, who admitted his nefarious activities and promised to stop.

How were the forgeries detected? Again, I'm not sure. I'm guessing that stamp dealers perhaps noticed an uptick in the number of mint OHMS War Issue stamps available in the philatelic marketplace, when there shouldn't have been any.

...

OK, I took a brief break to search on-line for information about these forgeries, and found gold in the form of Ken Pugh's web site, where he briefly discusses them. Turns out that there is a reference which will help collectors identify the forgeries — there were 25 different pin settings used for the OHMS perfins. Here's a link to a snapshot of the BNAPS booklet that Ken mentions. I assume that it's available from BNAPS. And it seems like I was right about dealers and a perfin specialist being involved in identification of the forgeries.

OHMS collectors will also be interested in an a 2011 OHMS forgery alert on the web page of the Ottawa Philatelic Society. This page concerns overprinted OHMS stamps, which were in use after the perfins were no longer being produced. As you might guess, the overprints were even more easily forged than the perfins. Caveat emptor!

Bob

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michael78651
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SOR Auctioneer
22 Dec 2014
07:35:38pm
re: About reperforations ...

Quote:

"If they are used - they aren't forgeries, right? "



If they "appear" used, that is not a guarantee of authenticity. There have been many forgers who use cancellations to hide deficiencies in their work. The cancels are strategically placed over areas of the forged stamp that they had trouble copying. The same holds true with fake surcharges and overprints added to genuine and even fake stamps.
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cathotel
22 Dec 2014
11:41:24pm
re: About reperforations ...

Bob, thank you so much for taking the time to research and share the resources you provided to clarify the sophistication level of falsifying/forging/faking stamps and some resources specific to my question. StampoRama is blessed with a philatelic brain trust that is broad, deep, and so willing to support the less advanced collector seeking to learn.

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TuskenRaider
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23 Dec 2014
01:21:28pm
re: About reperforations ...

Hi Everyone;

@ Bob;

Thanks so much for your time and effort at researching these links. I've bookmarked them and, they will make great reading
material when I'm sipping my morning cup of coffee. Always nice to have some good reading material over a hot cup of Joe.

@ Everyone;

We should all bookmark these references from not only Bob's links but others as well. I'm not working on Canada just now,
but will be eventually and it would be nice to have resources to rely on when needed.

Keep on Stampin'
TuskenRaider

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Bobstamp
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23 Dec 2014
10:16:15pm
re: About reperforations ...

Quote:

"If they "appear" used, that is not a guarantee of authenticity."



Michael78651 is correct, of course. It only makes sense to me that forgers would generally forge "big ticket" items, and the Canadian War Issue perfins that I was referencing, except for the $1 Destroyer, have relatively little value in used condition. Nevertheless, if you sell lots of low-value stamps and you end up with a lot of money, even if they are forgeries. That is no doubt what Sperati and other well-known forgers were thinking, and they probably weren't wrong.

There is also this possibility (for forgeries generally): They can be created "just for fun". Another Vancouver story has to do with a stamp designer who had immigrated to Canada from Eastern Europe. He couldn't get work here in Vancouver, so he spent his time "fiddling" with stamps to make different stamps from them. One of his tricks was to hammer the edges of ordinary stamps to widen them; then he would trim the perfs and sell them to dealers as imperfs. Interestingly, he sold them as forgeries, but did not otherwise identify them as such. And then, apparently, the dealers re-sold them as genuine, thus creating a future problem. I've heard it said that most "seasoned" collectors are unaware that some of the stamps in their collections are forgeries.

Bob
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philatelia
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23 Dec 2014
11:36:20pm
re: About reperforations ...

Oh boy I sure worded my response incorrectly. Yes, fellas, I DO understand that used doesn't mean it isn't a forgery. I'm not a complete idiot, I was just rushed and should have written "most of the forgeries you're describing are mint, the used copies I listed in the auction are probably not as likely to be forged."

I'm going to have to start triple checking everything I write for excruciating accuracy because if I don't someone WILL point out my error.

LOL - On my old job, when someone ran a crooked piece of conduit or made some other mistake, we would paint the job red. So I guess my message got the red paint treatment!

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michael78651
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SOR Auctioneer
24 Dec 2014
01:19:21pm
re: About reperforations ...

Back when I was a child collector, I had a small, manual typewriter. When I first started looking through a Scott catalog I saw that there were some stamps that had been made from a typewriter (the first issues from Uganda). I created some of them and put them in my album of the time. I don't have the forgeries or the album anymore.

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