I pulled this data off of a foreign website that apparently was reprinted from Linn's Stamp News back on 10/31/2005. Unfortunately the article text is intact, but the illustrations are not. Does anyone have the article that shows the various illustrations recited here?
Based on the description in the article, I believe that the text highlighted in red would relate to my first scan; the text highlighted in green the second scan. (I do not have an illustration of the other variety mentioned.)
Breast Cancer semipostal has four die-cut varieties
By Jay Bigalke
In circulation since 1998, the United States nondenominated Breast Cancer Research semipostal stamp (Scott B1) was manufactured with three basic die-cut arrangements and one subvariety.
A Breast Cancer Research stamp, printed by Avery Dennison, is illustrated in Figure 1.
Collector Gregg Greenwald of Wisconsin provided the information on the varieties and sent examples of the stamps to Linn's.
Illustrated in Figure 2 are enlargements of parts of the stamps that show the different varieties.
To tell the difference, look at the top corners of each of the stamps.
On the top stamp, the die cuts begin with a straight line, and the die-cut pattern starts with a peak and ends with a peak.
The middle stamp of Figure 2 has die cuts that begin with a peak and end with a valley.
The die-cut pattern of the bottom stamp begins with a valley and ends with a peak.
According to Greenwald, there are two subvarieties of the valley-peak stamps (the one shown on the bottom of Figure 2), but they relate to the vertical die cuts.
On one stamp, shown in Figure 3, left, the vertical cuts at the left begin with a valley and end with a peak.
On the other, shown in Figure 3, right, the vertical cuts at the left begin with a peak and end with a valley.
If the left stamp of the variety is flipped 180 degrees, the die cuts match those on the other stamp. It is possible that the die cut mats were inadvertently flipped.
The orientation of the horizontal die cuts on the stamps is what specialist collectors call "peak-peak," "peak-valley" and "valley-peak" varieties, respectively.
"The peak-valley and valley-peak examples are both available in my area of the country [Wisconsin], but it appears that the valley-peak example is not as widely distributed," Greenwald told Linn's.
Die-cut varieties are known on other stamps produced by Avery Dennison.
A story about different die-cut varieties on the 37¢ Roy Acuff stamp was published in Linn's issue of Nov. 17, 2003. The 34¢ Porky Pig stamp issued in 2001 also has different diecut varieties, including one variety found only on the special die-cut pane that has nine stamps with die cuts and a single imperforate stamp.
Avery Dennison continues to produce the Breast Cancer Research semipostal. Linn's reported May 2 that more than 606.8 million Breast Cancer Research stamps have been sold.
As of September, only two plate numbers have been reported on the stamps. They are V111111 and V121111.
The die-cut findings support the possibility that printer and finisher Avery Dennison used three different die-cutting mats during its production of the Breast Cancer Research stamp.
Linn's is interested in the existence of additional die-cut varieties for the Breast Cancer Research stamp not reported here.
To report any findings, write to Jay Bigalke, Linn's, Box 29, Sidney, OH 45365-0029.