Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Definitive Dated Plateblocks - A summary

Since I am through inventorying the majority of the definitive dated plateblock issues, I figured it was time to post a summary of what I need.
  1. Provisionals - 19 needed of 42
  2. Zodiac - 88 needed of 124
  3. Town Emblems - 116 needed of 161
  4. Landscapes - 58 needed of 169
  5. Towns Airmails - 7 needed of 22
  6. Birds Airmails - 1 needed of 7

So, overall, I need 289 of 525 plateblocks, or 55%. Of course, I probably need the majority of the expensive ones, but this is not a bad start.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008


Well, I have now completed my plate block inventory up to 1980. I think the plate block collection I bought only goes through 1996, so I am getting close. Of course, the Shekel definitive issue from 1980 is going to take a while. Not only are there 98 different dates, but the Definitive specialized catalog had a special supplement for this issue. There are about 400 varieties of plate blocks, and I know I have at least half. So, it will take me a while to make it through this issue.

One more update on the Telabul draw your own stamp. I see someone is very optimistic on E-bay, offering a full sheet (20 stamps, 3 with tabs, plus the central label) for $2000. While this is a rare issue, I don't think the price is justified. I would rather buy J1-5 tabs for that price.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Making progress

I have found a few spare minutes here and there to continue working on putting my plate block collection in order. This morning, I was able to spend enough time to make it through the Standby issue. According to my Bale catalog, there are 22 different dates available, and I actually have all 22. I also have a few varieties not listed in Bale (they are listed in Wallach's definitive specialized catalog). The varieties are all the addition of a + in the upper right corner of the selvage.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Another update

Just when I thought the Telabul draw your own stamps were taking off, another one closed on E-bay. This one closed at $63, 25% less than the one that closed last week at $84. Of course, a sample size of 2 is pretty meaningless.

A second interesting lot from last week was a set of 10-14 Tete-Beche plateblocks. This closed at $350, which was about double what I thought it would go for. This was a mixed set, with at least 3 different plate positions represented in the set of 5 (2, 5, and 6). A few months ago, I bought a matched set of position 1 for significantly less than this one closed at.

On another topic, I have been reading a lot of discussions on teh Virtual Stamp Club message board about the APS. I used to be a member of APS, but allowed my membership to lapse years ago. One of the discussions currently is about what could the APS do to increase membership. I am not sure about everyone, but the one feature I would use would be a wantlist matching service. What I am thinking about is a reverse of the typical use of sites like E-bay. I would like to be able to enter my want list into a site, then have dealers make offers to sell me items from my list. If done right, not only would this entice members to join, but it could offer a new revenue stream, as dealers could be charged a percentage of sales (or a flat monthly fee) for access to the list.

Wow, two updates in 3 days.

Saturday, June 14, 2008


Finally got a chance to work on my stamps again today. I spent a few hours putting away stamps that I had already scanned and inventoried. I was very far behind, so that this took quite a while, and I am still not caught up. I still have some items that I don't know how to store. For example, I have an airletter sheet with inverted die cut. This is too large to fit in any of my albums. I also have some mint sheets that are bigger than my album pages. I guess I will have to get a mint sheet album to put these in.

Not only did I put some stuff away today, I went through and wrote a list of all the albums I have in my collection. I counted 107. The majority of these are for my cancel collection. I have 17 Super Safe albums with special cancels, and another 5 with Slogan cancels. I have another 10 Super safe cover albums with FDC's of regular issues, and 10 with maximum cards. 11 more albums contain my Bulletin collection. I still have boxes of covers to inventory, so I will probably end up with another 20 albums at least. I am going to need a bigger room for all this.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Recent ebay lots

I haven't been bidding on much at E-bay recently, and have only won 2 lots, but there have been some interesting items that I watched on the sidelines. The first item was a set of 10-14 vertical gutters with colored tabs. This closed for $2850. Not bad, considering that there is one other set up for sale on E-bay now, with a start price of $3495. The second was a set of J1-5 tabs that closed for $1525. Both of these items had low start prices, so I was originally hopeful of snapping up a bargain, but they quickly were bid up out of my price range.

Another interesting item that closed last week was a draw your own stamp from the Telabul show. This one was without tab, and sold for $86. Right after the show, I was able to buy a tab stamp and a FDC (without tab) for less than half that price. Looks like people are starting to realize the rarity of this one.

One lot I did buy was a 4 stamp set from Egypt with Palestine overprints from the Nefrettiti issue (N53-6). There were 3 identical sets for sale, by 3 different sellers, all closing in a span of 3 days. The first one had a starting price of $25, and it is the one I ended up buying (I was the only bidder). The second set went for $42, and the third set for $22.50. If I had waited, i might have been able to get it for a little less, but I might not have.

There is also one lot that I saw listed 2 times, and it failed to sell both times. It was a sheet of the Shrulik Tete-Beche issue from the 12/28/97 printing missing the cyclometer number. I guess a small number of sheets were printed this way. I remember when it first came out being offered a mint sheet, a FDC sheet, a booklet, and a FDC booklet all with this error. I turned them down at that time, and have been seeing them come up on E-bay sporadically. What is interesting to me is that the original listing for this sheet was at a start price of $125. After 10 days of no bids, the price dropped to $115 but still no takers. I don't recall the exact price I was offered these at but I think it was a bit above this offering (around $150).