Monday, October 13, 2008

Bale catalog complaints

While I have been entering the prices for the items in my database, I have been using the Bale catalog a lot more than I have ever before. And boy, is it a pain. I have been primarily using the 2004 version, since that is the one I have sitting on my desk. When I go to stamp shows, I bring the 1998 version, since that was the last that was published by the original editor. For some reason, when the new owner took over, they renumbered some things (I have noticed it in the booklets, but I think there are other areas renumbered as well). My major complaint today is with the pricing. Why in the world do they have pricing for ust a tab, sheet, and FDC listed for most issues? What about a plain single without tab? There is no price listed. Plate blocks? Forget about it. I did find a footnote that says that plate blocks are 4x plain price. Of course, there is no plain price listed. Is it so hard to add the price to each entry? Also, why is the note buried in a crowded page? Can't the notes be consolidated to the beginning of the section? If you want to quickly look up the value of an item, it is impossible. You have to look up the item then start paging back looking for the notes that explain what the non-listed prices are supposed to be.
There has to be a better catalog out there for Israel stamps. Does anyone know of one?

1 comment:

howard rotterdam said...

Nothing seems to be as complete or comprehensive or as confused as the current Bale's. I met the editor, Joseph Stier, when I was in Israel in May at the big stamp show. He's a rather arrogant guy, who simply doesn't seem to care. The other catalogs on the market, Carmel, Moriah, the IPF, and the Postal Corporation's, are not as comprehensive and some have prices that are way out of line. My personal complaint about Bale's is its lack of proofreading, frequent errors, and its policy of not pricing recent FDC's.