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1909 British Levant Hinged Or Not?

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Posted 04/20/2021   2:50 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add NSK to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
Not long ago, I bid for some British Levant stamps described as fine unmounted mint (in GB unmounted is often used for unhinged). I have strong doubts about one stamp. I asked the well-known auction house for its opinion. I did not receive a reply. I asked them again, but there still is no supply.

So, I wonder what others think about this stamp. Is this a trace of a hinge or was this stamp never hinged?



Same stamp, other angle:

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Canada
596 Posts
Posted 04/20/2021   2:56 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add 3Dadeo to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I would consider it as "disturbed gum".

Possibly by a hinge, or scraped on something.

Either way, I would not count it as "unmounted mint" as far as value goes.
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Posted 04/20/2021   3:42 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add GeoffHa to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I can't make out much from the second pic, but the first definitely seems to show evidence of former hinging in the centre.
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Posted 04/20/2021   3:52 pm  Show Profile Check docgfd's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add docgfd to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Its an unusual spot to place hinge, and at an angle, but I see well-delineated lines with perpendicular corners that would lead me to believe this stamp was previously hinged. Dipping in watermark fluid would help, but since its not in your possession...
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Posted 04/20/2021   3:55 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add gmot to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Going off the first pic, certainly looks like some gum disturbance, which should have been disclosed. Regardless of whether it was previously hinged or not.
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Posted 04/20/2021   4:05 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add NSK to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Dipping in watermark fluid would help, but since its not in your possession...


The watermark fluid isn't. The stamp is. It is not the first time a lot from this auction house has an issue. But this time there is no reply to my enquiry.
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Posted 04/20/2021   6:08 pm  Show Profile Check docgfd's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add docgfd to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Duh...how else could you have taken the pictures? Hey, its been a long day.
Perhaps invest in a small bottle of watermark fluid to check it out more.
How did you pay? If via PayPal or credit card, you may have some recourse. I suppose you could go so far as to send a Certified Letter to the auction house. At least this way they couldn't deny receiving your complaint. If still no response, start filing complaints with the APS, ASDA, the Royal, or any other organization that would fit,
assuming its worth the trouble.
I've been caught up in this sort of tom-foolery myself in the past. It IS very aggravating. Would you care to clue us in as to who the seller was, just so we can keep this issue in mind when buying? Regardless, I hope it works out for you!
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Posted 04/20/2021   6:19 pm  Show Profile Check 51studebaker's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add 51studebaker to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I do not like the perf tips, from the images they may have been sanded/filed). If so, then then the stamp might have been regummed and teh 'disturbed area is actually a hinge that has been regummed over.
Don
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United States
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Posted 04/20/2021   6:28 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Germania to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I can't speak to the hinged/never hinged issue but the stamp appears to have several internal creases. That would concern me a lot more.
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Posted 04/20/2021   6:39 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add hy-brasil to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Not UMM in my book. That's not a hinge mark but residue of paper this was sticking to the back at one time. Same difference. I think the creasing around it was caused by removal of that paper.

The stamp is definitely creased and the gum is foxed/stained at the edges. Gum condition aside, this is already a faulty stamp. In this case due to the way it is, I wouldn't excuse the staining as being natural. This was not described as being faulty?
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Edited by hy-brasil - 04/20/2021 6:40 pm
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Posted 04/21/2021   01:22 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add NSK to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks all.

The stamp is one of a set of nine sold by a renowned English auction house. They described the set as

Quote:
BRITISH LEVANT - 1909-1910 KEVII surcharges complete, SG 16/24, very fine NEVER HINGED MINT. Scarce ...

There was no mention whatsoever of faults. There is another stamp in the set that looks as if fish and chips has been wrapped in it at some time. Sometimes, Edward VII stamps show creases, but those occur during production of the paper. In this case, I also had my doubts about these creases.

It is not the first time a set was not as described. Some years ago, I bought an overprinted Wildings set advertised as having one watermark. The majority had another watermark. It was a mix where the cheapest watermark was included. They refunded me. Some time ago, I checked another such sets and found the 5/- value had a cheaper watermark. I should have checked that better when I got it,

Watermarks on Wildings are not always easy to see. I also understand they cannot check every individual stamp. But this set is visibly not as described. The lack of a response from the auction house is not a good sign. And this was a reputable one.

I shall give them until the weekend and then sent a final reminder demanding compensation. But two weeks without a response is much too long. They have weekly online auctions, so the lockdown is not a reason for the lack of a response.
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Posted 04/21/2021   9:30 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rogdcam to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I have never really understood the semantics of gum terminology. Previously hinged, mounted, lightly hinged, very lightly hinged, they all describe the gum having been disturbed, in these cases by a hinge. And then there is disturbed gum which is what you get when as stamp has been, wait for it, hinged (as well as by other factors of course). There are other reasons for disturbed gum but the end result is the same. I see auction houses use hinged catalog values for previously hinged stamps and never hinged values for slightly disturbed gum all of the time. Come on folks. There are Russian stamps, particularly from the 20's and 30's that are notorious for streaky and/or patchy gum that looks the mess and they will be touted as mint never hinged. Or souvenir sheets from the 40's that have "tiny 5mm gum disturbance" that are priced as mint never hinged. You cannot be a little bit pregnant and you cannot have mint never hinged disturbed gum if the gum was never complete in the first place. Like buying a classic car with original factory rust.

I feel better.
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Posted 04/21/2021   10:48 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add No1philatelist to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Rogdcam, I actually bought one of those cars. It was called a Plymouth Volare.
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Posted 04/22/2021   05:03 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add NSK to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
@Rogdcam,

I am not familiar with the US market. Sometimes, I see huge price differences based on grades. Here, we do not really use grades and classic British stamps that are off-centre can still be quite expensive.

What I do note is that unmounted mint commands a big premium. Sometimes, that premium is more than you will see in old catalogues, including SG catalogues. SG lists all stamps unmounted from Edward VIII onwards. Prices for stamps after 1936 fall of a cliff when hinged. It appears some people are hopeful they can get a premium when their stamp is lightly hinged, because it is almost unmounted.

When I want an unmounted stamp, I want it unmounted and not as if it is unmounted. I do not want it lightly hinged, heavily hinged or mentally unhinged, I want it actually unhinged and otherwise, I do not want it.
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Edited by NSK - 04/22/2021 05:06 am
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Posted 04/22/2021   10:11 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add No1philatelist to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Definetly gum disturbed. It appears like heat, humidity and weight may have caused possible adhesion to glassine or paper the gum side was against and also the gum toning. Carefully removed leaving gum intact with remnants of whatever it contacted. And while trying to free the stamp they appear to have caused creasing.
Personaly, I agree, unmounted or Never hinged should equate the same and as it is gum disturbed and light creasing, I would "unmount" the lot back to the dealer or auction house from which it came for refund.

Maybe it was not purposely mounted with a hinge but is was mounted to something.
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Edited by No1philatelist - 04/22/2021 10:15 pm
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Posted 04/23/2021   08:31 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add NSK to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
After sending a third email without reply, I called the auction house.

It appears they did receive my messages and replied to them. For some reason, I did not receive their replies.
My service provider decided some mails from their address are spam and others are not.

The auction house agreed the stamp was previously hinged and offered to either receive a refund of almost 30% of the amount I paid for the lot (including postage) or to return the lot for a full refund. I have chosen the first option. This "set" rarely is offered as a set.

This restores my trust in the auction house. Errors can be made, as long as they are corrected.
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