Friday, December 23, 2011

NDH - Croatia "Storm Division"

Everyone of us know WWII and dark period of German Occupation - personally, I never collected this material, specially I don't like to promote any material that can glorify in any way German atrocities and destruction that they made at the time. Here is just one section from web that say: "... Nazis made Ante Pavelic head of the NDH. His Ustase Storm Troopers began eliminating the two million Serbs, Jews, and Gypsies in the NDH...".

But when it come to Philately, I see that some of stamp, issued at the time of WWII have "classic" design and quality work done! Here, one sample from recently obtained collection, that - when I discovered it inside pile of album, say just "Diamond" - and yes, it is one "must be" item for any more advanced collection that You can build.

Lets start with statistic, which will say, Mi Bl. 8, P. S. catalog no.: 8, Scott B76  s/s, comparing this three major catalog, we come across very big difference in description and prices, probably it is because West and European market difference, and probably something "other" are in the game. 

To mention, that this block is issued on Jan. 9, 1945 (Scott have it just under 1944 year), even with date/year of issue this two catalog have difference. This block is issued with intention to promote Croatian division that was involved in many battle over Yugoslavia and abroad, and surtax go directly to finance this "Storm Division". What we have in quantity printed is 7500 sets and 2500 s/s - which is too low for time, and topic! Don't forget, that after WWII come to power communist, which well know how to erase any fascist symbols or "propaganda" of any kind.

Next one point to suggest: Be very careful when purchasing this items, don't do it from any web auction, and if You have it, go and made certificate for same. Even that I can not say who is right, but Scott stated that "plentiful counterfeits existed", Michel catalog don't have this "mark" and PS catalog clearly stated that expertise are need, because "many fake existed, that was produced using ORIGINAL ofset plate". This material You buy JUST and JUST from certified dealer, personal dealer or someone who You personally trust.

Now, what say market? I see that it is nice investment material to obtain - prices from "year-to-year" go up, not because inflation, but because demand, and if it have in 2007 catalog price tag of 1800.00 euro per one, today it is full 2000.00 euro per one - and if You want to obtain one imperforated sample (which was very rare and impossible to find) - be ready to go with 5 to 8000.00 euro in pocket.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Croatia - NDH, WWII period

Bl. 6I, 12 Sept. 1943:

Even that I don't like countries that made genocide around, I must to mention this issue! Artist made it well, and we can say that it is really one "masters work" when is talking of engravings stamp design! It is made with full emotion, and You have feeling to be there, on the street of old city Zagreb!

I will give just some information. This issue come out for III. Phila Exhibition held in Zagreb - Croatia (at the time: Independent Country of Croatia, under German Occupied Forces, some say "puppy state"). Graver was K. Seizinger, printed in Wien - Austria, existed perforated and imperforated, overprinted, with "hidden" graver "S" mark, and without graver mark.

Very hardly, that You will find it somewhere around in perfect condition, because total quantity printed run around 118 000 m/s, take in account WWII period, Communist period after WWII, and You will see that most of it have some fault, or are totally damaged in some way!

What catalog say regarding prices? Keep an eye, if some samples will be available for exchange - take it right away! Michel value it this way:

simple option = 18.00 euro,
with graver mark "S" = 55.00 euro,
imperforated = 350.00 euro.

Which option You have in Your collection?

Just don't mix it (graver mark "S") with stamp and m/s - because graver mark on stamp are inside "window" and on m/s is on the plate of near door on building!

Because "problematic" paper and glue (there is two type of paper, one "hard" and one "Japaneses" more tin), many samples are damaged by humidity, after it - collectors used cancel to "repair" damage - that resulted in some "fake" cancel applied on some examples - existed some very good Phila Societies to find more information, like Yahoo groups on NDH, APS and some other.

Again - search for it, and take it at the spot!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Slovenia, Hydrometeorology issue, 2000 yr

Let's say, nothing specific in this issue - isn't?

Some design, that can be rated around "6" (from 10), no more - no less! At first glance, I even didn't intend to publish it here, I was thinking what is it worth? Some topic? Flower, satellite, lighting, but it is made like amateur job!

Then, when opening catalog, I see that it is printed just in 70 000 stamp, and time of issue was May 9, 2000, I was very surprised why this quantity, if we know that many countries print more than few million and Slovenia print around 200-250 000 per issue, surprise but now they go down to 70 000. O.K. - not big deal that You will try to obtain it - isn't?

But, it have reason - if You read well "Michel" catalog - You will see that this issue are printed in sheet of 9+1 format, which will give You just 7777 printing sheet (funny number?) out from printing plant!

Now I have just old catalog (from 2008 and 2005) and what made me to change decision and inform readers, was a price tag for this sheet of 9 + 1 tab!

In 2005, "Slovenka" catalog give it one very high price of 120.00 euro per sheet, do You really think that ordinary collector will spend so great (at the time) bunch of money? No, I don't think!

Again - BUT!

It come 2008 year, and "Michel" catalog go further (because inflation?) and price tag is now 200.00 euro per sheet of 9+1! God - who is here on this globe, who drive this "jump"?

Are that speculative move, or it is just one of evidence, that (rumor is going around for long time)
"Michel" is such kind of keeping prices for material that they have (to be fair, I even don't know if they have stamp shop)!

How is - is, and if You find it somewhere in "exchange" base - GRAB it - it is not items (in sheet format) that You will have chance to obtain it in the future!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Czechoslovakia Michel block 67A

Again and again I discover some really nice items from Czechoslovakia.

My 25 year in Philately give me nice knowledge about this country, but with time and by daily work, human lose sense of catching on first sight something beautiful, here was it case.

I have this item/s in my stock for long time, but never have time to examine it in proper way, and with "sense" for detail, which are quiet lot on this m/s.

Let start from catalog information:
date of issue is Jun 3, 1986. Michel catalog marked it by number Block 67A (existed also B and C version), POFIS catalog marked it by number K2747A and Scott by 2689 s/s.

Prices are very different for, because Scott didn't favoring it like Michel or POFIS - but we can more or less, come to one market value by evaluating this parameters. Scott have it on 5.00 $, Michel keep it for some years on 10.00 euro, and POFIS is much low of 40.00 Kron (more or less today 2.00 $). Where is middle? Somewhere between 8.00 to 10.00 US$ I think will be very fair catalog price, which will resulted on market about exactly full Scott catalog prices. Hardly acceptable for US collectors? Probably! But, go around, and see in any US collectors collection if they have this beauty inside! No, You will find very-very almost no-one samples there!

Now, because some "varieties" in this issue, You can well made one small exhibit on this issue. first, this issue have three option. "A" is for s/s perforated in way that You have one stamp, and two tab, "B" is for partially perforated, mean, perforation between stamp and tab are missing, and "C" option is for imperforated s/s. All three option resulted in very different price tag for one issue, where "A" will give just 10.00 euro, "B" go to 20.00 euro, and "C" option to 40.00 euro - nice difference!

Examine POFIS catalog, You will find additional six (6) type for it, because some "repair" in printing process, where engraver work are done to repair "used" printing plate, that occurred in printing process. You must take in account that this issue have around 600 000 pieces printed (all three option together) which resulted in some minor damage to printing plate. Where is difference for this sub-types? In some minor "line" on fingers, face, envelope and post horn, but even that it is "minor" it bring us technically different stamp on market!

And what is even more interesting, that option "B" with imperforated between stamp and tab, give us ONE stamp (if detached from s/s and used on envelope) totally different from "original" stamp (that have just symbol of FIP, globe, Praga 88 logo on it). When we eliminate this perforation between stamp and tabs we have one great design, that have from left side reproduction of one painting from XVIII century, of Post master General Karol Josef hrabe Paar (1654-1725) and from right side is one post history items from Post Museum (post horn, cancel, old mail).
I can say just "great" - great artist work, great history use on postage stamp, and great item that must be included in any serious collection!

Friday, January 21, 2011

P. R. of China 2010 issue:

Just recently received shipment from China, with two hard cover albums for year set of 2010. First, I'm really happy to see that China Post have and continue with one really great design and quality of stamp, and stamp album at all!

Hard cover, well illustrated, well printed, and this last shipment in hard cover pages inside this year album - lux that no every country on this globe can afford to produce. Yes, all depend on peoples that will or will not to purchase this albums, but I made it and obtained - really happy for it.

Prices for this two albums, with postage included from China, "R-Air Mail" - I pay high, around 240.00 US$, that is lot at the moment that whole year set of 2010 can be obtained from dealers for 46.00 US$, but in this two albums are included also sheetlets, booklets and albums alone - all this will rise prices 5x - expensive, but worth it!

What I want to say, is this one issue, numbered at 2010-19, "Musician", portrait of Bach, Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven. All together face value of 8.10 RNB - no high at all, but design, printing (engraving and offset) are well done. I see that it is printed in printing sheet of 20 (not included in year album), and still didn't see anywhere FDC - but will try to obtain also this two option.

Here, according SG new edition catalog, set is valued at 4.25 BP, but in China it is selling around 1.70 US$ - which a really low value for this precise art work!

Friday, January 7, 2011

P. R. China - Scientist, 1955 yr.

Scott numbered it 245-248a, China catalog C33M Scientist of Ancient China, issued Aug.25, 1955.

Not that it is made with great perfection, but for 1955 year, ethnology level, printing machines, color quality etc, this issue can be named like best -of-the-best!

Simple design give even more beauty to this m/s, and portrait are fine balanced.

here come persons on stamp:
Tsu Chungchin (429-500), mathematics
Chang Heng (78-139), astronomy,
Chang Siu (683-727), astronomy,
Li Shin-chen (1518-1593), physic & pharmacology.

All four stamp are face valued of 8f, at this time standard rate for all China stamp, and with this magic number "8" that characterized China effort in all field of life, from planning economy to the simple day-life.

One color, gravure, paper choice - give just "taste" in Philately, and in wish to include it in every serious collection. Catalog value as in Scott or in China catalog from 1998 and 2006 year, give nice value of 90-100 US$ per set, in mint condition - but if we go to explore little auction houses and eBay, we will discover very fine rise in prices. I see that on market, prices ranged around 300+ US$ per set of four m/s and set in mint condition - this is very nice investment opportunity, even today when we have "great recession"!

Overall feeling for this country philatelic material are and this period - simple, buy it at first glance! mint, used, CTO - don't think twice - even if market will go down, and prices will drop (that I can not see in near future), material will be more and more rare! Too many are going back to mainland, too many collectors in China want this period, material back to collection and offer are near minimum, that what I see on market are very-very high prices!

Right from SG #17 edition catalog, I see that it have 27.00 BP per set and 225.00 BP per four sheets, on China web - it have very great shortage in stock, and single that was available in 2007 year was sold same moment when offered, at the time it was sold for 16.00 $ per set and 144.00 $ per m/s.