In addition to collecting individual stamps, many people also specialize in collecting different forms of postal material. One form of postal material is a First Day Cover. Although interest in collecting modern First Day Covers has somewhat diminished nowadays, it is still quite popular in many circles. So, what is a First Day Cover (FDC)? What is the difference between a FDC and a regular cover?
Probably one of the most common ways of collecting stamps is individually, as singles. However, many collectors also like to collect blocks of stamps. Stamp blocks make for an attractive display in a collection and in some cases, even turn out to be a valuable investment. Several different types of stamp blocks exist and this article will help you to understand the difference between a regular block, a plate block and an inscription block.
Another question that collectors often ask is: What is the difference between a full pane (sometimes just called a pane) and a souvenir sheet? Granted, it can be a little tricky sometimes to tell the two apart. For the purposes of understanding the differences, this article will compare a full pane to a souvenir sheet that Canada Post issued for the same stamp: Canada stamp #1813 (full pane ) and #1813i (souvenir sheet).
It can sometimes be difficult to correctly differentiate one stamp format from another, especially when some of them are so similar. Many new collectors often wonder what is the difference between a stamp booklet and a booklet pane (these guidelines apply primarily to Canadian stamps)?
There are many different types of stamp formats to collect—singles, coils, and blocks to name a few. Sometimes the differences can be confusing to the novice collector. This article will attempt to explain the difference between coil pairs, line pairs and se-tenant pairs.
Every new stamp collector is faced with the dilemma of acquiring stamps for his collection. Many have chosen to collect used stamps, often an economical alternative to mint stamps. However, when used stamps are on-paper (for example:still stuck to an envelope) how do you get the stamps off without damaging them? You have to soak them. Here’s hoping this article will help you to proceed in the best possible way.
Now that you know how to grade the condition of your stamps, you may feel ready to either purchase or sell some stamps. However, if you are dealing in Mint stamps, there is another factor you need to understand in order to determine the proper value—the never hinged surcharge (NH%). This is a percentage to be added to the regular price (the value of a mint previously hinged stamp); this will give you the final value of a stamp that has never been hinged. For Canadian stamps, the never hinged surcharge value of each stamp is established and printed in the Unitrade Specialized Catalogue of Canadian Stamps and represented by the NH% symbol.
Condition grading can sometimes be very confusing as it is a subjective evaluation and even veteran experts may disagree on some points. The overall quality must be taken into consideration before a grade can be determined. Many points must be examined in detail, both front and back, before a conclusion can be made. A close study of the centering, the perforations, the cancellation and the paper must be made in order to determine the presence of any hidden flaws. A very fine appearing stamp may under close examination be downgraded to fine or even to defect. This knowledge is necessary and very important as the grading of a stamp will dramatically influence the price of a stamp.
Welcome to the fascinating world of stamp collecting. Everyone has different reason for collecting, some enjoy collecting according to specific themes, others to learn about history, others still as an investment. Whatever your reasons, starting a new hobby can be a little intimidating at first and you may feel you need help getting to know your way around. That is why Arpin Philately has decided to post a series of articles helping you to understand the basics of stamp collecting-the stamp ABC’s!
Some of the most frequent questions we receive have to do with tagged stamps. What is tagging? How can I detect tagging? What is the difference between phosphorescent and fluorescent tagged stamps? Winnipeg vs General tags? Many collectors have these stamps but are unable to differentiate them from the regular issues and that can be very frustrating.