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What is your worst philatelic purchase?  
 

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Valued Member
United States
120 Posts
Posted 11/14/2017   12:09 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add Cook Islands Specialized1 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Message
Recently at a stamp show I attended, I noticed some amazing airmail covers for only 25 cents a piece. I picked out eight, and only had twenty dollar bills. I asked him to set it to the side and said that I would return after I had broken the twenties. I ended up going to a dealers table that looked like an amateur, but I just wanted to break the twenties in fear of the previous dealer selling the covers that I wanted. I found a binder full of pages with about 200+ Morocco stamps up to 1940 and glanced over it. The stamps appear to be in good condition, though it was only a glance. My mind was set on those covers. I handed the twenty and received ten back (in a five and five ones). I did end up getting the covers which made my day, but it was quickly shattered once I got home. Every page had been hole punched, and with almost every hole punch, a stamp was partially punched too. If that wasn't enough, the entire binder smelled like smoke. The previous owner must have smoked in his/her home A LOT. The stamps also had the scent. Now I have a binder of worthless disgusting stamps that I wasted money on. I still feel like an idiot.....

To any smokers out there, if you smoke around your collection or inside your home with your collection for that matter, thank you for destroying philatelic history....

-Jake
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Valued Member
31 Posts
Posted 11/14/2017   1:03 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Stamping101 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I've been to only two shows so far, and luckily I've never had a bad philatelic purchase. But I'm sorry that happened to you. What stamp show was it?
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2460 Posts
Posted 11/14/2017   2:03 pm  Show Profile Check Nells250's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Nells250 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Thankfully so far the only "bad" purchases I can think of are mixtures that contained a lot of CTOs....
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1499 Posts
Posted 11/14/2017   2:47 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Jenny2U to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
When I first started collecting, I bought 6 US covers franked with SC #65 for $100 from a foreign dealer and thought I really put one over on him

I also think I wasted too much $$$ on mixtures. It's been a bit of a learning curve, but now that I've learned to specialize, I'm convinced that bad purchases are behind me.
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United States
1225 Posts
Posted 11/14/2017   4:53 pm  Show Profile Check Stamps1962's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Stamps1962 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Some of my worst purchases were used albums on eBay. The worst was a set of pages that the seller apparently couldn't fit into the box he wanted to use so he whacked off the entire left side of the pages up to the frame line. He actually disputed accepting them back but I did get a refund.

I once bought a 'replica' set of Penny Black plates from a vendor in the UK. Upon arrival they turned out to be tiny, no bigger than my little finger nail. He claimed I was the first unhappy buyer. I think he lied. Got my money back on that one too
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Edited by Stamps1962 - 11/14/2017 4:54 pm
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United States
571 Posts
Posted 11/14/2017   5:11 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Stampman2002 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
When I was first chasing modern essays and proofs, I purchased the item below, being a novice at this.





I later realized that it wasn't a proof but was trimmed from a souvenir card. Fortunately, the price wasn't too bad....$6.00
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Edited by Stampman2002 - 11/14/2017 5:13 pm
Pillar Of The Community
United States
690 Posts
Posted 11/14/2017   5:21 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add hy-brasil to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Cook, it could have been a lot worse. Unfortunately, from experience, it won't be the last unless you decide to hide out in a cave and never come out again.

Mine would be buying the supposedly last Hong Kong issues from their PO stand/agents at the Pacific 97 show. All the nickel-and-dime speculators were turned out, me included, which should have been a tipoff right there. I recall one day, the instant the show doors opened, a young woman literally sprinted through first, pushing a stroller with her kid in it, to get to the HK stand first. E Ticket ride. Sales were limited to a certain number per person per day, and the stuff was offered at double face. Real sweethearts! Plus there was a long line until they sold out their stock allotment for the day. Good thing there was a limit so I couldn't get myself into too much trouble. It was pretty much impossible to sell what I got, no matter the price, (and still may be) since everybody who wanted HK had got theirs already.

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Stamp Smarter's 20th Century US Fancy Cancel database:
http://www.stampsmarter.com/feature...rn_Home.html
Edited by hy-brasil - 11/14/2017 5:27 pm
Valued Member
United States
326 Posts
Posted 11/14/2017   5:35 pm  Show Profile Check rlsny's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add rlsny to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Mine was a cartel purchase. I can't even talk about it. Suffice it to say I was ripped off. Made that mistake once - never again.

I just did a search on eBay for Scott 243 NH sold auctions. The top 5 highest price sales were all Cartel. Two of the items were listed twice in that top 5 - the same item sold twice within a couple weeks. Just incredible that they have been able to go on so long.


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Edited by rlsny - 11/14/2017 5:37 pm
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United Kingdom
2776 Posts
Posted 11/14/2017   7:04 pm  Show Profile Check GeoffHa's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add GeoffHa to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
As a smoker, I hereby apologise for destroying philatelic history. Now pass me les Gitanes, please ...
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Valued Member
United States
301 Posts
Posted 11/14/2017   7:25 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add SPQR to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
My worst purchase was this cover franked with a Scott #62B that I purchased on eBay.



a few years after I purchased the cover, I was searching through the certs on the PF webpage and found the cert that did not accompany the cover stating the the cover "Is Genuinely Used On Cover WITH BACK FLAP MISSING, AND THE STAMP IS CREASED, TORN, AND REPAIRED." The cert was, of course, correct and I had missed the repair when I purchased the cover.
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2561 Posts
Posted 11/14/2017   10:31 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add timbres667 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I bought a set of stamps of Costa Rica mint but when I got it all the stamps stick on the paper. Made a feedback ... Daniel
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Canada
2561 Posts
Posted 11/14/2017   10:39 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add timbres667 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
GeoffHa
I smoke too but in the garage. But I have to be carefull were I sit my glass of beer... Cheers. Daniel
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Bulgaria
51 Posts
Posted 11/15/2017   12:21 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add filkata to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I bought an cover album that was the wrong size. I traveled quite a bit to go to a very dissapointing expo, and I did not want to go back empty handed, but in the hurry I did not notice my mistake.
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739 Posts
Posted 11/15/2017   10:50 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add danstamps54 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Mine was a self-inflicted wound. A number of years ago I thought I was getting a "deal" on a US SC 10. Had I even bothered to look at the images, I would have noticed that it was a mutilated US SC 35.

The seller kindly offered a refund but I declined. I use this incident as an example of my stupidity: Watching football on TV + adult beverages + sniping on eBay doesn't work!

I haven't done all three (together) since!

Dan
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The poor relations of stampdom need a home too. ... I'd rather have an example that is imperfect than no example. (LSNW 11/20/17 p.54)
I collect for enjoyment, not investment.
APS Member 223433 Postmark Collectors Club Member #6333
Edited by danstamps54 - 11/15/2017 10:51 am
Pillar Of The Community
United States
912 Posts
Posted 11/15/2017   2:49 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Climber Steve to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Seems like many of the problems being commented on stem from dealings with eBay vendors. For me..........

In the early 1980s, I bought an old world wide collection in Ideal albums from a Canadian auction dealer. Cost was a couple thousand dollars, which was a lot considering my salary at the time. When I got them, it turned out that the catalog value of the British and Commonwealth material was in Gibbons values, not Scott. As usual, the Gibbons values were greatly inflated when compared to Scott. I sent it back for a refund, as it was not as described, and was surprised when the vendor returned it to me demanding payment. I then decided to keep the albums in order to learn a lesson. To this day, 35 years later, I have not bought anything again from that vendor; Vance Auctions.

Moral of the story is simple. For buying British material, buy only when the catalog value is Scott, not Gibbons. Some US dealers list their British material in Gibbons. I won't buy from them. This is the US; list it in Scott.
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Edited by Climber Steve - 11/15/2017 2:50 pm
Valued Member
United States
32 Posts
Posted 11/15/2017   3:48 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Arrows2Atoms to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
My worst experience was my fault and the dealer's fault. It was my first time at the big APS StampShow and I was like a kid in a candy shop. I had my want list full of US 4th Bureau Canal Zone overprints, but just by Scott number and no descriptions.

In my euphoria of so many dealers, I came home with one particular stamp that was on my list, and the dealer's holder identified it as the number on my list. Only the actual stamp in the holder was the sharp top "A" of CANAL and not the flat top "A." That misidentification was difference of over $70. I had no idea which stamp dealer I bought it from.

Lesson learned, take copious notes on your want list.
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