Stamp Community Family of Web Sites
Thousands of stamps, consistently graded, competitively priced and hundreds of in-depth blog posts to read
Stamp Community Forum
 
Username:
Password:
Save Password
Forgot your Password?

Welcome Guest! Need help? Got a question? Inherit some stamps?
Our stamp forum is completely free! Register Now!

Recent Experiences - The Good And The Bad

Previous Page | Next Page    
 
To participate in the forum you must log in or register.
Author Previous TopicReplies: 77 / Views: 3,852Next Topic
Page: of 6
Valued Member
United States
93 Posts
Posted 10/26/2020   08:24 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Phillystamper to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Re coming across an album with stamps partially adhered. it isn't hard to get a large flat tupperware cookie or pastry storage container-specially during the holidays. You will also need a couple sheets of plastic craft grid-(Michaels etc) and a package of cheap kitchen sponges. put the sponges in the bottom, lay a network of plastic chopsticks or some other recycled plastic or cut pieces from thin styrofoam packaging for spacers and put the grid on top of that, soak the sponges with distilled water. Lay a couple sheets of the album pages on the grid, seal and wait a few hours. The stamps should lift right off, you should also have no problem removing the hinges as well. The gum will be disturbed a bit but the stamps won't get damaged- no more thins. Once they dry I use off cuts of marble threshold from when we had our bathroom redone to press them flat again if they curl.
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Pillar Of The Community
United States
1683 Posts
Posted 10/26/2020   12:57 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add shermae to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
What denomination is the missing stamp supposed to be, and what series?
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Valued Member
United States
89 Posts
Posted 10/26/2020   3:39 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add knick1959 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
What denomination is the missing stamp supposed to be, and what series?

See this specific post for page images:
http://goscf.com/t/74552&whichpage=2#665686
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Pillar Of The Community
United States
1683 Posts
Posted 10/27/2020   10:36 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add shermae to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Got it. Checked stock of a few European dealers and agree that the stamp doesn't exist
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Valued Member
United States
89 Posts
Posted 10/28/2020   09:46 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add knick1959 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
I'm done with that album now. Well, I have one 1985 airmail page that wasn't supposed to be in that volume and I JUST received my V4 ... so one more page. In the process I completely destroyed one stamp and severely damaged 2 others. The rest had varying degrees of marks on the gum but were still stamps, although I will replace them.

Watch out - I've started to quote and reply to myself. Don't let me go on too long!

I had to mention the "last page" in this source album and I was done. 4 airmail stamps from 1985. Well, I decided to go ahead and transfer those a couple of days ago so as to mark the album done.

Don't you know 1 of the 4 was stuck and stuck good. Another one marred and added to the "needed" list. Well, I'm done with that one for sure now. Thank Goodness!
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Edited by knick1959 - 10/28/2020 09:49 am
Valued Member
United States
89 Posts
Posted 10/28/2020   3:10 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add knick1959 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I probably have things I had originally intended on listing in this thread, but they have escaped current memory. I have one observation left in my current queue. I'll post this, probably ad nauseam for many. But I've only read minor gripes so far, specifically about bidder behaviour. This one?

eBay in General - but mostly Sellers

I'm not at all new to eBay in any respect. My eBay account dates back to 1997 and I was into coins and stamps even then. I have a closet full of boxes of albums, 98% purchased there and a filing cabinet stuffed with country collections obtained the same way. Maybe I'll share a pic or 2. Remind me.

As I've mentioned a dozen or so times here, I've been mostly away from stamps for ... we'll call it 10 years just to round it off. Not completely; minor dabbling when the mood stuck me, but eBay searching for stamps has been dormant until the last few months.

Things I've noticed since "coming back" w/regards to stamps:
  • Sellers are selling individual album pages? Or small sets of a handful of pages? Last night I saw someone selling US pages by year groupings. I still see whole country collections and albums, but there seems to be a trend towards micro-lots. And for some of the asking prices, I suppose you only need to sell one or 2 to make it worthwhile. Sometimes things are reasonable, but that's not normal. Example: I purchased a Whitman album page set 1930-39 for $20 BIN (shipped for $5). It had the 2 25x souvenir sheets from that era in the photos provided. Great deal ... I'm glad I saw it quickly. His other offerings were not anywhere near as interesting although it looks like some of the others did sell.

  • Lots of estate finds (I did see a rant about this elsewhere here) or "unsearched" lots. Usually with hinge marks and empty mounts showing. These are always of unusual high value as indicated by the starting bid ... I've seen $275-3000 and, maybe I'm not well-seasoned in the area of US stamps ... not yet ... but these seem way off-base to me. I suppose you can ask whatever you want; it's easy to adjust your prices later. But why not accept offers, too, so you can zero in on the real value? I know, I know, I can just skip over these. My tendency has been to look to see where the value is. I'm just not seeing it.

  • I'm having volume sellers not answer simple questions. Perhaps the lots weren't high enough of a price to bother? Purchased 2 lots from the same seller and they just arrived; I purchased without answers. The good news for me is that these will work fine for me (album pages).

  • I've had 2 instances that claimed my item was shipping, then the seller held the "label printed" for a long time before actually hitting the shipper.

That's it for me for now. Thanks for listening!
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Valued Member
United States
458 Posts
Posted 10/28/2020   8:09 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add mootermutt987 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Knick- "Yes", to all of your eBay observations. Sellers lot things as they see fit - that means we see all kinds of things grouped together and that grouping is based somewhat on the seller's sanity. I have found that if I am looking for 2 or 3 sets from a particular country (not even necessarily in Scott - or any catalog - order) that if I wait long enough, there will be SOMEONE that will make up such a lot, making me quite happy. I figure they simply have what I am missing and they don't want to break it down any further. At some level, I guess I am encouraging this behavior because I will bid.

Estate finds - NOT! Don't believe it. It is a 'marketing' ploy. MAYBE 2% are real finds, and that may be generous.

Shipping - COVID is wreaking havoc on regular shipments, I think. Plus the PO is behaving oddly, too. ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE!!

eBay is the definition of 'buyer beware'. And I am on there every day, just in case.
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Pillar Of The Community
United States
1433 Posts
Posted 10/29/2020   12:47 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Climber Steve to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
mootermutt wrote: ".....if I wait long enough, there will be someone to make up such a lot...."

Curious as to what you mean. I just went on eBay to check out Portugal & colonies. There are 3,492 listings currently active. Do you end up going through thousands of listings in hopes of finding something? And do you go through all the listings of interest to you whenever you're on eBay? I went through about a hundred or so. Found a couple of interest, but not so much to make me want to bid.

In my specialty areas (Portugal & colonies, Poland, Mexico), I'm far enough along in collection development that I can't see eBay being of much use (meaning the amount of time, to be spent looking for some specific items, isn't worth it). As an aside, I found a lot of 6 Portuguese colonial stamps, cataloging about US $3.00 or so, on sale for US $9.99. Such a deal! But shipping was free.

You also wrote: "COVID is wreaking havoc on shipments...." I agree. My domestic purchase deliveries have gone well. But, I've been sitting on an order, for my dealer in Lisbon, Port., now for a couple months due to all the mail uncertainty.
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Edited by Climber Steve - 10/29/2020 12:55 pm
Pillar Of The Community
United Kingdom
5180 Posts
Posted 10/29/2020   12:58 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add GeoffHa to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Like Steve, I just can't be bothered to wade through masses of eBay lots. In terms of making up lots to sell, my approach reflects how I like to buy myself. A reasonable number of stamps in a cheap and cheerful country or regional lot, rather than individual stamps or sets. Everything goes, not necessarily with the last penny squeezed out.
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Valued Member
United States
89 Posts
Posted 10/29/2020   3:43 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add knick1959 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Like Steve, I just can't be bothered to wade through masses of eBay lots.

Wading through all that eBay has to offer is certainly time consuming, even if you have a "special tool" to help. How much room do I have?

I am an "experienced" software developer. Not retired, yet, but old enough that I am planning just that: retirement. My home "work" over the years has included all sorts of message tools that I used to offer as "shareware", if that is even a usable word any more. I also did tons of works with scripts and "bots" to automate tasks. I had a brainstorm once about an eBay tool ... and that tool exists (it has for likely 19+ years), although eBay crippled my grand scheme when it disallowed searching for what other users were bidding on AND obfuscated bidder IDs. But this tool exists. Although I cannot share it in practice because I use my personal eBay API key to run it and if it gets called from elsewhere and too many times, my key would no longer work. This would be an interesting project to rekindle ... what, in my retirement with the 100's of other things I have planned? We'll see; I just need to convert to screen scraping over using official APIs. Maybe.

ANYWAY ... My tool, while aged and a little finicky, still does a great job for me. Perhaps I shouldn't share, as it does offer me a slight advantage, although it doesn't eliminate all of the pain of weeding out uninteresting eBay listings. It does some of the work at least.

I can set up and save a search, just like you can via eBay. My results list is persisted locally and I can delete things I am not interested in, keeping only the good. So I have local "watch lists" by search. I just recently re-discovered that I have a seller watch that also seems to (still) work. It would have been wicked if only I could still spy on my competition like I used to do many years ago ... <music icon here> .... Mem-ries .. </icon>

Still plenty of work to do with each refresh, but on the important ones I have the software refresh every 15 minutes. Most are set to every hour. I'll share a teaser screen shot or 2:



Ok, maybe just one larger image :). If you click it you can see more detail. I can "twit" sellers by name so I don't see any of their listings. This works well in Coin categories to eliminate those selling "replicas" or unmentioned fakes. Anyway, that's enough bragging for now. I have a long mental list of improvements I should make. If I can only get the energy to decouple it from eBay's APIs ...
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Edited by knick1959 - 10/29/2020 3:47 pm
Valued Member
United States
458 Posts
Posted 10/29/2020   5:32 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add mootermutt987 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Finding 'custom made', or seemingly so, lots on eBay of this set and that set but not the sets in between only works under certain conditions. I am talking about countries like Abu Dhabi or Cocos Islands, NOT Portugal & Colonies or Russia or France. Basically, I do a search for one of the sets I am looking for and (for a small country) I probably get a few dozen hits. Then, while looking for the condition I want, I also take note of what 'else' is in a lot. I mean, I am going to search through the condition EVERY time to make sure it is what I want, don't you do that? I am killing two birds with one stone, I figure. I have to do my due diligence anyway. I agree, it sucks to have to wade through hundreds of lots. I DON'T go to a country category and browse for things I want (well, I do that for early US and a couple countries that I have a particular interest in) - my 'random country' searches are more focused. My point is that there are plenty of lots on eBay that are more than just one set. I am constantly amazed when I have a partial set, missing a few, that I can search for one and some of the others pop up as being a lot with the first. It helps if you are not looking for the low- or hi-values (do a search for the lo-value and you will get all kinds of hits for the whole set). I don't understand why people lot things the way they do, but every once in a while it works for both parties. If I were a seller, I wouldn't do it.

It's kind of like going through the apple orchard looking for good apples. If you run across a good truffle, all the better. Doesn't happen often, and you can never count on it, but when it does happen you feel like you've done something right.
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Valued Member
United States
89 Posts
Posted 10/30/2020   2:13 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add knick1959 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
So I remember another thing that was on my original list. This is purely a personal observation about the way my own mind changes over time. Followed by a question or 2. Well, let's start with the questions. Probably won't be as productive buried this deep in a thread. I reserve the right to bring it up later in a dedicated thread, if needed!

I have always stored my most valuable coins in a safety deposit box at the bank. This ruins some of the satisfaction of having a coin collection, but they are "safe", relative to being with me at home. This is not practical for any type of set of albums. What do people do to keep their stamp collections safe ... from theft? from fire or natural disaster? What else is there to be concerned about?

Anyway. I was into stamps and covers as a teenager. And coins, but these were secondary. After throwing it all out (ok, selling it off) for girls and cars (drivers and classics) I later rediscovered both but coins moved to primary. And the financial constraints of my teen years were gone. I built a nice set (2 actually) of coins I liked and, as mentioned, had to move them into a bank box.

Ah! But I can start a quantity-over-quality WW stamp collection and not have to worry about the Big Bucks of spend and value of my coins. These could stay home with me and see me work on them whenever I wanted. And this is where I had my first restart in stamps. Houses and raising a family led to another pause, although coin interests continued. But as life changes, I'm back to stamps. HOWEVER, my 2-3 dozen volume set that didn't amount to much is starting to look a little different. I'm starting to add some additional value to my holdings with small sets and singles. Which is raising my concerns for safety.

Who believes they are keeping their best stamps safe and how, please? A thief, faced with so much to choose from at my own house, would have a good chance of choosing poorly (well, without a moving truck). A fire or tornado would cover more territory. Is a large safe the answer? Or part of it? On the thief front, that would kind of pinpoint the value, yes? :)
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Edited by knick1959 - 10/30/2020 5:53 pm
Valued Member
United States
458 Posts
Posted 10/30/2020   5:47 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add mootermutt987 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I collect stamps 2 ways. I have my stamps that I buy individually, usually at auction, and spend $100 and up each. They get inspected, photoed, added to my database, and put in the bank. Each is kept in a Lighthouse 1- or 2- strip plastic stockcard. They go in a Tupperware container and are in the safe deposit box. I got a larger box - about 12" wide x 6" tall x standard depth (24"??) and it is big enough for a good sized Tupperware container. If the bank floods, I hope I am OK. If it catches fire, I am going to have a gooey mess.

My 2nd way of collecting is WW. This allows me to collect lower value items, 'see' the world, and have 'stamp fun'. I bought an old collection, years ago, in a few cartons of Blue Internationals, and they have a place on a shelf in my house. If they are stolen, or flooded, or burned, it will be more of an emotional loss than a monetary one.

There are companies that specialize in insuring collectibles, and the insurance isn't too bad. You can get a break if you keep your stamps in a safe, or a bank safe. They also allow you to have a small part of your collection out of the safe and maintain your coverage. I've never made a claim, so I cannot attest to that side of the equation.

FWIW, a small home safe can be a reasonable expenditure, if you have a good place to put it securely.

Or, you can collect used stamps only, and not worry so much about a broken pipe putting you in the poor house.
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Valued Member
United States
458 Posts
Posted 10/30/2020   7:59 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add mootermutt987 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Hi Knick. I think I am responding to your later edit.

I think, generally, thieves don't know which stamps are more valuable than the others - unless you are targeted because of your stamp collection. When I was young, our house was robbed a few times. The TVs always got stolen. One time, we had a cigar box full of Indian Head pennies sitting on top of the TV - it disappeared with the TV. BUT.... they also took any money that was lying around in the open, like change on a dresser or a couple $1 bills on the counter. The guy was caught robbing someone else and admitted that he robbed our house. He was asked about the Indian Head Cents - he said he spent them. They were inventoried, and valued at a few $100, and the insurance company paid off on them (and the TVs, and the jewelry from my Mom's dresser, etc). He was looking for drug $$$. He wasn't particular, at all. In his defense (!!!!) he never made a mess - everything was as it was when we left, except there were spaces where the things were that he stole.

Anyway, if a random thief sees your stamp collection, he may take what he can, but he probably won't have any idea of what is valuable. If it is large and bulky, he may simply be happy getting away with your TV, PC, Smartphones, jewelry, and loose change laying around.

If he is targeting you BECAUSE of your stamp collection, all bets are off. You have some control over this side of it - be careful of what you say and to whom. Make it hard for your SCF (or any other site where you write about your collection) identity to be associated with you and where you live.

Fending off the drug addict is easy - leave spare change lying around. The one to really worry about is the stamp-targeter. An insurance policy may also give you peace of mind.
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Pillar Of The Community
United States
1411 Posts
Posted 10/30/2020   8:49 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add cjpalermo1964 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Prior threads have addressed this and various people use one or more of bank safe deposit boxes, locked closets, locked cabinets, gun safes, other home safes, safe rooms in the home, distributed storage in offices and/or storage lockers, firearms, underfed dogs, insurance, or a combination. Individual people posting here are unlikely to disclose exactly what they personally use.
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Page: of 6 Previous TopicReplies: 77 / Views: 3,852Next Topic  
Previous Page | Next Page
 
To participate in the forum you must log in or register.


Go to Top of Page
Disclaimer: While a tremendous amount of effort goes into ensuring the accuracy of the information contained in this site, Stamp Community assumes no liability for errors. Copyright 2005 - 2020 Stamp Community Family - All rights reserved worldwide. Use of any images or content on this website without prior written permission of Stamp Community or the original lender is strictly prohibited.
Privacy Policy / Terms of Use    Advertise Here
Stamp Community Forum © 2007 - 2020 Stamp Community Forums
It took 0.39 seconds to lick this stamp. Powered By: Snitz Forums 2000 Version 3.4.05