eUSC Logo 2002  Cleaning stamps

1.4.   The good, the bad and the ugly on the chat board

2002

Discussion on cleaning stamps, Jul 25, 2002
Posted by eddiephilatelic (2144) star on Jul-25-02 at 14:02:23 PDT Auctions

Sorry to ask a dumb question, but I am curious: What is wrong with "cleaning" a stamp, and what does that mean anyway? I was selling some Thai occupation stamps, and someone said I should "clean" them and they would fetch higher prices. I did not want to do anything to them, so just sold them like I received them. It sounds like from some of the comments on the board that cleaning stamps is bad -- some sort of fraudulent enhancement of value.

Posted by dbenson (2956) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 14:05:17 PDT Auctions

Alison, it all depends on what is meant by cleaning, if it just means a bath there is no problem. If it means something that alters the item then there may be a problem.

D2

Posted by jpf1 (202) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 14:18:39 PDT Auctions

Alison
Many museums and reputable galleries routinely clean paper items. Many times it is the only way to stop rampant mildew and other pesky infiltration. Stamps are no different. There are those among us that do clean stamps. That is, try and stop the ongoing damage that is being perpetrated on the paper. There are those that will say you are ruining the stamp, and doing harm to the hobby, and even go so far as to call you a crook. Never mind, I just let them rant on, and go on cleaning that which needs cleaning.
PapaJon

Posted by eddiephilatelic (2144) staron Jul-25-02 at 14:20:43 PDT Auctions

PapaJon and D2: How do you clean an old stamp without doing something to alter the value? (I understand that "cleaning" off the cancel would be fraudulent.) --Alison

Posted by dbenson (2956) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 14:37:51 PDT Auctions

Eddie, what you do with your own stamps in your own collection is up to you but to alter a stamp and then sell it can lead to problems, especially if it receives a cert. that mentions the alteration.

D2

Posted by eddiephilatelic (2144) staron Jul-25-02 at 14:43:32 PDT Auctions

D2: I am not intending to do anything, just learn what everyone is talking about. When PapaJon says he cleans his stamps to prevent mold, etc. what exactly does he mean? I am not asking about how to alter a stamp. Some people seem to be super touchy about this subjet, but I thought that this board was supposed to be to educate the less advanced stamp collectors.

Posted by dbenson (2956) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 14:58:04 PDT Auctions

Alsion, you originally asked because received some comments about an item you sold. They would have mosy probably got a higher price if they had no visible stains.

D2

Posted by dbenson (2956) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 14:59:53 PDT Auctions

Alison, it is common practice to dip stamps in chemicals to remove stains and mould marks, that is not cleaning.

D2

Posted by eddiephilatelic (2144) staron Jul-25-02 at 15:04:57 PDT Auctions

D2: What chemicals? And is doing this considered a "bad" thing that could cause a cert to come back bad? If dipping in chemicals to remove stains is not considered cleaning, then what is cleaning? Sorry to act so dumb, but I really am confused now and am now exceedingly curious to have it explained. I am going to go to a family dinner now, so I will check back late tonight. --Alison

Posted by gkop80639 (124) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 15:05:02 PDT Auctions

Just a thought in between meetings at work regarding "cleaning" - the cleanings I have observed remove toning, stains, light cancels, and have changed the colors of some of the items (i.e., the 10ct Washingtons (68, 96, et al, go from green to blue green, the 1ct Franklins, 7, 9, 24, et al, change from dark blue to light bluw, etc.) The "cleaning" can make a dingy looking stamp bright white.

It is my understanding that any cleaning or pressing at all destroys the numismatic value of paper currency. The "dirt" and "stains" are just as much a part of that stamps history and heritage as the cancel. Of we allow anybody to make them prettier artificially there is literally NO PLACE to draw the line between acceptable and unacceptable

I really wish it was allowed to show you ACTUAL EXAMPLES to illustrate how much difference cleaning makes to "eye appeal", a critical component of "value". But I can't, and just yesterday I identified an entire STOCKPAGE of classics with most cleaned and some with cancels removed by our buds in upstate NY.

George

Posted by poppadawg (234) star on Jul-25-02 at 15:07:27 PDT Auctions

D2 what would you dip stamps in to remove stains.

Posted by poppadawg (234) star on Jul-25-02 at 15:08:35 PDT Auctions

close the bold, close the bold, close the bold

Posted by dbenson (2956) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 15:08:39 PDT Auctions

Alison, I don't know what is done in the US, but we used to use a small amount of Chloramine T diluted and the stamp left for a few seconds and then cleaned in water and dried. AFAIK it does not do any damage to the paper and does not affect the cancel.

D2

Posted by dbenson (2956) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 15:09:58 PDT Auctions

poppa, WATER, on used stamps preferably, mint stamps don't seem to like the stuff.

D2

Posted by iomoon (581) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 15:10:42 PDT Auctions

Alison
I think what D2 is writing is that whatever you do to your stamps in the privacy of your own home, they should only be listed on eBay in a "private auction" with the identities of the bidding participants hidden.

Posted by poppadawg (234) star on Jul-25-02 at 15:12:05 PDT Auctions

D2- ok I asked for that. I was, of course, referring to chemicals. I don't recognize the item you mentioned in your response to Alison.

Posted by stamp12345 (137)  star on Jul-25-02 at 15:12:54 PDT Auctions

EDDIEPHILATELIC----to answer your question , talk to your wife about her laundry experience or go to the store and read the labels in the clothes cleaning section . you will get and have a good knowledge on stains ,molds and brighting colors and getting the white paper to be brighter---- i m serious this is not a joke or intented to misled ,,, paul

D2

Posted by dbenson (2956) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 15:17:08 PDT Auctions

poppa, I have no idea what it is called in the US,

D2

Posted by jaywild (389) star on Jul-25-02 at 15:24:23 PDT Auctions

Regarding cleaning of stamps, the APS recommends the type of cleaning along the lines illustrated by D2 below.

Fine art prints (etchings, lithographs etc.) are frequently cleaned to remove certain stains to the paper, most often those which result from exposure to acid mounting and mat boards and mildew/fungus stains but also accumulated grime. This is considered entirely appropriate, and will enhance rather than detract from value, particularly for older pieces. The outer parameter for such cleaning is always that it involve no loss to the original paper or the intentional marks (i.e. the art) upon it.

I suppose the limit for cleaning stamps would be somewhat the same--do nothing that would subtract physically from the paper or disturb the original design in any way.

Jim

Posted by coverwiz (531) star on Jul-25-02 at 15:39:06 PDT Auctions

Paul -- Watch out Eddie's a she....

Posted by rclwa (556) star  on Jul-25-02 at 15:42:54 PDT Auctions

NIOP -- I used to see the word "cleaning" primarily referring to removing cancels, to make a used stamp appear unused. I've especially seen the wrod used that way when referring to operations where the intent is postal fraud, to reuse the stamps in the mail. I assumed this was the meaning in the definition of what things reduce a stamp's value. However, other types of cleaning, not affecting cancelled or uncancelled, I think would have varying degrees of import. Carefully erasing thoughtless pencil prices on covers comes to mind. (Would any dealers reading this who practice that PLEASE STOP!)

At a stamp show, you can carefully examine an actual stamp, with a loupe or UV light even, and feel the paper, etc. None of this is possible with a picture, especially an ipix. If I had evidence that a stamp show dealer was altering stamps and misdescribing them, I'd not hesitate to warn a friend contemplating a purchase. eBay's analogy would have the dealer set up little private curtained booths at his table, preventing others from seeing who was looking at his stamps or communicating with them.

The US C3a might be a good example for some previous discussion. They are rare compared to the number of collectors who would like to own one, yet they have quite a range of condition. Even the one that went through a vacuum cleaner still commands a mighty thick wad of $100 bills, as it is still a world class rarity. (A nice companion piece to the horribly mangled CIA invert!) But a perfectly centered LH or NH (are any NH?) copy brings even more, to be sure.

The pic on a certificate uniquely identifies a particular stamp, from cancel or the way individual perfs acquired their shape on separation. It isn't meant to allow determination of subtle characteristics that determine value, such as watermarks, paper type, subtle shades even, but if you have the stamp in hand, the picture allows you to say with certainty, "This is the stamp for which certificate #12345 was issued." Sometimes, as Richard pointed out, you can tell even more from a picture, but that's just a bonus and is not necessary to establish the value of the cert.

Just some random thoughts. Bob

Posted by jrwinsom (118) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 15:56:31 PDT Auctions

JR. is here. How's everyone this afternoon. :)

Posted by stamp12345 (137)  star on Jul-25-02 at 16:04:26 PDT Auctions

coverwiz--sorry about that, ...paul

Posted by selecto (329)  star on Jul-25-02 at 16:07:25 PDT Auctions

Cleaning ~~ A product called "Lindner" which comes in Parts A & B does well. Made in Austria. Subway has it. It works for mold, mildew, foxing, toning, etc. It will scare the hell out of you as Part A is purple, and doesn't neutralize out until the part B rinse.

Posted by dcderoo (888)  star on Jul-25-02 at 16:16:49 PDT Auctions

For those of you who are not familiar with numismatics, they have the same difficulty, i.e., "What is cleaning?" A sunken ship with many mid-19th century coins. In the 150 years at the bottom of the sea, they had become quite encrusted. They therefore would have to 'clean' the coins to restore them to collectable status. But a 'cleaned' coin has considerably less value. Hence they were not 'cleaned'; they were 'curated'.
I do it, it's cleaning and unacceptable.
The numismatic 'names' do it and it's curating.
Most collector are still gagging over that one.

DC

Posted by stamp12345 (137)  star on Jul-25-02 at 16:20:39 PDT Auctions

NOIP----the best safe guard against cleaned,alter,reperf, and fakes is to built your own reference stock . This is done with known forgeries,damaged high value stamps ,and copies of the lower values of the same set or time period of that country.these are what some call the worthless stamps . a few years ago i wanted to fill in my early austria album . so i built up a decent reference on the varnish bars issues with and without . i took it to stamp shows so i can match what i was buying to what the right color and bars should look like under the same light. the reference stock pages has been used by three different collectors and a dealer .reference pages are not expensive to put together and was fun to organize...paul

Posted by jrwinsom (118) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 16:25:50 PDT Auctions

Stamp12345, Paul, thats an excellent way of building your collection,reference collections always help. JR.

Posted by poppadawg (234) star on Jul-25-02 at 16:48:01 PDT Auctions

Please look at this and tell me if it is a candidate for cleaning. It is Scott # 239-30 cent Columbian.

Posted by jrwinsom (118) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 16:58:05 PDT Auctions

JR. back later.

Posted by gkop80639 (124) star on Jul-25-02 at 17:04:16 PDT Auctions

Just back from a meeting.

1covers:

you stated "As probably everybody reading this already knows, except pinkies, it is often very easy to KNOW something is fake from a picture or scan only. To say something is genuine in all regards is another issue."

You are absolutely correct; but that is NOT what eBay was talking about. They said that you cannot tell if it is THE SAME STAMP from pictures alone.

So in the case of my "before" and "after" pictures, where I show the stamp as it was when they purchased it, and what it looked like when they got done with it (after cleaning, reperfing, removing/adding cancels, etc.), their contention is that there was no way to tell that that is the same stamp in both pictures.

Many of you have seen my side-by-side comparisons. Did any of you agree with eBay?

George

P.S. JR - would you like the URL where you can see over 40 of these "before" and "after" matches?

Posted by gkop80639 (124) staron Jul-25-02 at 17:06:10 PDT Auctions

poppadawg: Is that the front or the reverse on that 30ct Columbian? :-)

George

Posted by iomoon (581) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 17:08:42 PDT Auctions

Io's still here. For a while, then I've got to run.
Has anyone else read the stupid rules on the Science and Mystery board?
It ought to be called "What the National Enquirer could never answer board"
However, it's a no flame zone. Which means that if you diasgree with anything you aren't allowed to make a posting. Sound familiar?

Posted by malolo (421)  star about me on Jul-25-02 at 17:14:36 PDT Auctions

NOIP - NOIP -I just posted this on the New Features Board.

NEW FEATURE ON DISCUSSION THREADED BOARD - Earlier this week Ebay pulled the Stamps discussion board claiming duplication of topics and posters. This was after claiming about one month ago lack of use. Stamp Chat people have found many more chatrooms used less than Stamp Discussion. One of the major concerns of the Stamp Collectors is the huge number of altered and misdescribed "stamps" offered on Ebay, and we are certain Ebay pulled the plug on the Stamps Discussion because it was making them all too aware of the fraud being conducted by some sellers..........There was always great difficulty in reporting to Safe Harbor, and they always claimed no expertise in Stamps. We provided expertise, so they pull the plug......Now in an incredible turn around, Ebay actually had a "Report" button on the Discussion Threads so the "community" can report, get this, not fraudulent auctions, but threads that break Ebay rules!!!!! ..... The RULES are obviously more important than researching fraud, and I guess a community of snitches is easier to develop than expertise in stamps....Roger

Couldn't resist reporting a belch on one of the threaded links. );>)

Posted by 2red4u! (20) star  on Jul-25-02 at 17:17:01 PDT Auctions

Ok alright already:Here's the cleaning trick 1 quart H2o thats water,for those of you in reo linda.And 2 tablespoons beach.Let soak for 3 to 5 minutes.This don't hurt the paper will not change the canclation,just makes it look post office fresh.now on to the next subject Please............jb

Posted by selecto (329)  star  on Jul-25-02 at 17:17:23 PDT Auctions

poppadwag ~~ You should absolutely, positively do everything possible to clean and restore that Columbian, sparing no expense, as it appears to be a rare one-of-a-kind perf variety.

Posted by g.1 (498) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 17:26:27 PDT Auctions

2red When I add the beach to the water, should I make it just sand, or should I include the rocks, seaweed, shells, dead crabs, fish bones, feathers, and broken bits of glass too?

Posted by g.1 (498) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 17:29:19 PDT Auctions

Pappadawg Care fro a serious answer: you might be surprised at how nice that stamp will look if you leave it standing overnight in a bowl of water. Start out with the water slightly warm. No cleaners, bleaches or beaches required.

Posted by dbenson (2956) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 17:33:10 PDT Auctions

I would be very worried about adding bleach, it may work for some stamps but not all,

D2

Posted by jim_lawler (442) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 17:37:12 PDT Auctions

As to cleaning stamps, I've occasionally used a single drop of dishwashing or laundry fluid to a half pint of water. Let soak for "a while" - until it looks a bit better - and then rinse three or four times in fresh tap water. Blot and dry as usual. Only once did I ever use bleech. It was to show kids what could happen. I mixed a table spoon of bleech into a half pint of water, put in a stamp and went on talking about stamps for a few minutes. Then I had the kids soak a stamp, blot it and but it in an old book to get it to dry flat. Then I "remembered" the stamp we'd put in the bleech water. It's back was as nice a white as you could get, and it matched the front perfectly. Guess it's a rare missing ink variety. Maybe I should have kept it for an eBay auction.

Jim L.

Posted by 2red4u! (20) star  on Jul-25-02 at 17:38:21 PDT Auctions

g1 the dead crabs work well

Posted by 2red4u! (20) star  on Jul-25-02 at 17:39:51 PDT Auctions

jim that must have been a photograuve

Posted by 1covers (589) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 17:40:44 PDT Auctions

I'm back sooner than expected - just in case people think I never try to give advice.. Greg I Don't forget the secret incantation!

Seriously collectors, please do not CLEAN stamps or covers. If a stamp is as bad as that 30c Columbian, throw it away. Whizzing stamps is the lastest fad in California and at a certain New York State factory. It is easily detected with a good black light. Recent group of stamps that was send to me by PSE to look at had about 85% whizzed (cleaned) stamps. I called PSE and said I was going to call it on my opinion statements. I do not know if the concensus was to mention cleaning or not. Made me sick.

Those stamps were all done by expert restorers. What will your attempts look like? Covers are even worse. many notations on covers were put on at the time of use and provide information that may be crucial to understanding the cover. Notes on back are often clues as to provenance. Unless you KNOW for 100% certainty that you are erasing a price put on by a dealer, don't do it. Also, feel free to erase "beauty!" that appears on many covers sold by a noted Boston dealer (and a friend actually).

Posted by 2red4u! (20) star  on Jul-25-02 at 17:42:27 PDT Auctions

take care everyone i'm off to atlanta again duty calls.or at least the job.

Posted by gkop80639 (124) star  on Jul-25-02 at 17:42:29 PDT Auctions

So - am I hearing this correctly? The concensus seems to be that it is OK to bleach and/or otherwise clean a stamp to remove stains, toning, and dingy apearance and make it look "Post Office fresh." This would of course raise it's "eye-appeal" considerably, theoretically raising it's "value" by a like amount.

Please, someone, if you believe that, then why isn't it OK to reperf the large margins of a stamp and get an XF-S one? After all, it would have more "eye-appeal" then, too.

And those dumb ol' pen cancels,geez, it would look sooooooo much nicer without them, wouldn't it?

I guess the fact that the price could be raised considerably and lead to a considerably greater profit is just a coincidence, huh?

Posted by jrwinsom (118) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 17:44:29 PDT Auctions

Those bleached stamps stand out like a sore thumb under a blacklight. JR.

Posted by gkop80639 (124) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 17:44:52 PDT Auctions

AMEN, 1covers.

Posted by 1covers (589) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 17:46:10 PDT Auctions

PS - I do not consider a bath in warm water with soap to be cleaning. I am talking about any kind of chemical treatment such as that mentioned by David B.

Many public auction descriptions include terms like "bright paper" - this is usually a euphemism for a bleached stamp. Frequently US 10c 1851's and 57's are subjected to this treatment.

Posted by selecto (329) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 17:49:59 PDT Auctions

Richard ~~ They clean (take the crud off) Leonardos. I can't do that to a stamp?

I recall your having mentioned your judicious use of the "back end" of a # 2 pencil from time-to-time.

Posted by hingelicker (0) on Jul-25-02 at 17:50:17 PDT Auctions

you people just cant make up your mind! one minute ut is damn those who dare better a stamp. the next is let me show what i do to clean a stamp! unbelievable! what a joke!

Posted by dbenson (2956) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 17:50:28 PDT Auctions

Richard, Alison mentioned that she was told that she could have realised a higher price if they were cleaned. It is a problem of the definition of what is cleaned. To use water and water only is still cleaning if it gets rid of dirt and finger marks. If it entails using other substances even in the minutest quantities it is a different matter and should be used only by someone who knows what they are doing as it may have dire consequences.

D2

Posted by 1covers (589) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 17:54:58 PDT Auctions

selecto They repaint Leonardo's too. Long ago someone repainted that famous complete sheet of Saxony #1's as well (some idiots still try to plate individual stamps using the painted sheet as reference). Doesn't mean it is needed in case of a mutiple image item such as stamps unless a unique artifact. I use an eraser (gently) to remove fake cancels on stamps/covers on rare instances where I already know the cancel is a fake - usually just to "prove" to owner the nature of the fakery.

Posted by gkop80639 (124) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 17:57:23 PDT Auctions

D2:

HUH?

So cleaning with chemicals and other solvents and detergents should be performed "...only by someone who knows what they are doing as it may have dire consequences...". Dire consequences to WHAT? To the profitablility of the stamp or perhaps to the honor and integrity or the perpetrator?

George

Posted by 1covers (589) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 18:02:13 PDT Auctions

People will continue to clean stamps as long is there is a higher market value for cleaner stamps. People will regum stamps as long as there is a market for never hinged. People will re-perforate stamps as long as there is a market for well centered, perforated on four sides, stamps, etc.

Don't think experts can't usually tell those types of manipulations. The fact that it is done does not mean one should condone it.

Posted by jrwinsom (118) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 18:08:52 PDT Auctions

Cleaning stamps started in "offically" in 1847 and sooner in other countries. Cleaning a stamp for profit is just plain alteration again.

Posted by jrwinsom (118) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 18:16:17 PDT Auctions

I'll be back later. JR.

Posted by rclwa (556) star on Jul-25-02 at 18:17:52 PDT Auctions

Richard -- Point well taken regarding erasing prices. If I have any doubt I don't touch it, but 5 or 8-- is pretty obvious. It annoys me greatly that these dealers will pencil a price right on the front of a cover, especially if it is a bit smudged over the decades and you can't erase it without making a contrasting clean spot! In this day of inexpensive protectors and post-it notes, the practice is inexcusable.

On the other hand, I have a cover that is greatly enhanced by notes in the distinctive hand of Stanley Ashbrook.

Bob in WA

Posted by dbenson (2956) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 18:18:04 PDT Auctions

George, sorry, dire consequences for the stamp, philatelic suicide especially with bleach,

D2

Posted by gkop80639 (124) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 18:22:10 PDT Auctions

1covers (may I call you 1 :-)):

Agreed.

Wherever it is easier to cheat than to earn it the hard way, it will be done. Which begs the question: should we even be on a venue that not only won't police itself, it won't allow anyone else to either?

George

Posted by gkop80639 (124) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 18:23:18 PDT Auctions

D2, sorry, but in the long run the honor and integrity is what will suffer most.

George

Posted by dbenson (2956) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 18:30:03 PDT Auctions

George, difficult to prove who did it and the stamp is stuffed anyway,

D2

Posted by philcomp (522) star on Jul-25-02 at 19:22:01 PDT Auctions

Cleaning/Altering/Etc. Anyone who has ever dipped a stamp to check for thins/creases/watermarks is guilty of 'altering' stamps. Naptha, benzene, Ronsonol, etc. are all solvents and will dissolve oils on the stamp and in the ink. (Did you ever wonder why many US Postage Dues, even MNH copies, have a slightly washed out or 'runny ink' look?...they have been dipped too often.) Some of this temporarily dissolved oil is inevitable removed from the stamp, particularly if a lot of fluid is used and the stamp is removed from a pool of the fluid for drying.

I think that there are some practices which are legitimate:

  • Soaking/washing: clearly used off-paper stamps have already been soaked as have NG stamps. An additional soaking in distilled water or, even, distilled water with a few drops of a mild detergent added can remove dirt and help to preserve the stamp.
  • Dipping for creases/thins/watermarks is a legitimate (and necessary) practice. It also removes some of the oils left by careless fingers and thus is serving a preserving function.
  • Using a tiny amount of diluted hydrogen peroxide with a very fine brush to reverse 'oxidized' inks is a grey area. This partially reverses a naturally occuring process (the absorbtion of atmospheric sulpher by some printing inks) and returns the stamp to its approximate original color. This is a preservative process which undoubtedly improves the appearance (and marketability) of a stamp.
  • Some very old mint stamps are soaked to remove heavy cracking gum (yielding NG stamps). This serves a preservative function in that aging gums can eventually damage the stamp.

Other practices (regumming, reperfing, removing cancellations, etc.) clearly have only one purpose: to improve the price of the stamp. They serve no preservative role and are the actions of a dishonest person.

Posted by sarge (643) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 19:36:27 PDT Auctions

Has anyone learned what JR is an expert about??? [Other than showing up, and letting all know "I'm ba-a-a ck!"

Posted by tallan.ent (27) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 19:41:02 PDT Auctions

Sarge Hes an Expert at avoiding answering questions

Posted by cobbie10 (544) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 19:41:42 PDT Auctions

Yes Sarge... answering questions with another question.

M.

Posted by sarge (643) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 19:51:13 PDT Auctions

Y'know... I think it wuld be appropriate is JR posted in RED...after all, at least in this country, a red 'badge' means something. [JR's been around eBay for a bit more than eighteen months...Never chose to say 'hello' here...and all of a sudden he shows up as [the?] expert on an eBay-sponsored show... Something fishy here!]

Posted by rclwa (556) star on Jul-25-02 at 19:52:17 PDT Auctions

philcomp -- Also included in your last point, perhaps, is the famous German Ostropa sheet (B68, 1935), and perhaps some others, whose gum, if not removed, will eventually make sulphuric acid and dissolve the stamp. Many are eaten clear through at the watermark, where the paper was thinner. Scott gives it's unused value with gum removed.

Bob

Posted by abt1950 (149) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 20:15:37 PDT Auctions

Good night to all and to all sweet dreams of stamps that don't need cleaning, stamps that don't get reperfed or regummed, and are always sold with full and honest disclosure of what they are.

Anne

Posted by jrwinsom (118) star about me on Jul-25-02 at 20:24:55 PDT Auctions

Hello everyone.

The discussion segues into a surprisingly civil conversation with JR, about what he collected, then eddiephilatelic comes back to wrap it up.

Posted by eddiephilatelic (2144) star on Jul-25-02 at 22:06:14 PDT Auctions

Interesting discussion about "cleaning." What I am taking away from the discussion is that cleaning, other than soaking in water, should not be done. What is interesting to me is that email I got a year ago about the Thai occupation stamps severely chastised me for not "cleaning" the stamps used on piece before offering them. --Alison


2001  Lesson 2:  Be prepared to wait for an answer        1.4.  The good, the bad and the ugly on the chat board        2002  Discussion on detecting watermarks