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Do You Prefer Collecting Used Or Unused Ultra-Modern Stamps In 2022?

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Valued Member
Lebanon
51 Posts
Posted 11/06/2022   08:17 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add mazdoc to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Responding to hoosierboy's statement, "Then we have the Arab Sheikdoms pandering supposed postage stamps that were not recognized by Scotts in their catalogue."
Those stamps had the cancellation PRINTED on them directly.
If you examine any of those stamps, you'll see the halftone offset printing of the cancellation stamp, instead of it being ink. How lazy were they?!
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Pillar Of The Community
United States
599 Posts
Posted 11/10/2022   11:29 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add hoosierboy to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Pay face for a "stamp" you know can never be used for postal purposes? Stamp?
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Valued Member
United States
152 Posts
Posted 11/10/2022   8:22 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add fimpster to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
For modern US self-adhesives, I only collect mint, full sheets (or occasionally booklet panes), and I usually only collect commemoratives. I don't try to collect everything, just the ones that interest me. I only pay face value, ordered from USPS online or bought at the USPS counter.
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Valued Member
United States
67 Posts
Posted 11/14/2022   11:00 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add l2y to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
It's almost impossible to build a collection of used stamps unless you buy a new one and mail it to yourself. My preference is to build a collection of mint stamps.


zman: This is the way I collect modern US stamps. I try to only collect used stamps.

Chris S : I like you also started collecting again during the pandemic. Also, like you I like ultra-modern stamps. However, I don't like collecting the full sheets for most stamps. I still pay bills by check and use the need for stamps as an excuse to buy them.
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Valued Member
123 Posts
Posted 11/16/2022   10:09 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add chris s to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
l2y - I should correct myself - I collect panes of 20 of modern commems but ones I like. If I kind of like it I'll just get a few - one with a plate block number for the collection the rest for postage.

AS an aside, one of the best used commemoratives I got was from a dealer who used one of the six souvenir sheets from the 1992 100th anniversary Columbian set for postage!

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Edited by chris s - 11/16/2022 10:14 pm
Valued Member
United States
38 Posts
Posted 11/30/2022   10:00 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add jdtrue66 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
For my stamp collections I want new in both my US and topical collections. I just don't want a cancel to block any of the image. I save cancels for my various cover collections. But for some topical CTO is all I can find so worst of both worlds.
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Valued Member
United States
66 Posts
Posted 12/23/2022   07:54 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add jmgi2022 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
C) The production runs for many commemoratives seems to run between 18 - 45 million which is 50 - 80% less than a few decades ago when there were more stamp collectors and many more people used postage.


Interesting, I'm a new collector and I didn't realize that the ultra modern commemoratives had such low production numbers. Is there a source online that I can go to find production numbers for modern stamps? I guess I can assume that every stamp issued from at least the 1940's-1980's had billions made, that's why they are still so inexpensive in mint condition. I don't know, but maybe a case could be made that the average ultra modern commemorative will be valued much higher than their pre-1990 counterparts at some point in time. Maybe its already starting to show, since I see some stamps that were issued in just the last decade are selling for what seems to be surprisingly high prices/sheet.
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Valued Member
123 Posts
Posted 12/23/2022   7:28 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add chris s to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Sites from such stamp sellers as Mystic Stamp and Bardo will provide production amounts of stamps as far back as the early 20th century. Production runs for stamps starting in the 1920's through late 1980's of commemoratives were higher --- I think the peak (or one of them) was the Boston Tea Party block of 4 to form one design which about 1 billion were produced. Most were produced anywhere from about 40 - a little over 100 million as stamp were used much more then than now. Still a range of 15 - 50 million is still not scarce or low but rather modest. It is low compared to prior generations but the true scarcities and rarities are now found with errors or issues that had incorrect information issued and then corrected with a new issue with the old ones no longer sold and destroyed (One example is Legends of West pane of 20 from the 1990's and a more recent one from 2016 that was likely produced by some people at the USPS was the corrected $2 Inverted Jenny Commemorative). Nevertheless, one should be aware that as postage use for letters has diminished much over the past 30 years, there is the potential for some used commemorative stamps to become somewhat scarce and the MNH just less common than their predecessors of 30 + years ago. Note I write there is a potential --- I cannot predict the future stamp market.

For recent issues you can find the planned production runs of US stamps from the USPS site. Click "Stamps" and then choose a stamp. Then go to the Production Specs block which should have this information. If not there than the USPS Postal Register Announcement will provide ample detail about stamps. For coils tamps you can find great info on recent and old coils from the pnc3.org - Plate Number Coil Collectors Club.

Hope this helps.
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Pillar Of The Community
United States
6065 Posts
Posted 12/23/2022   8:54 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Cjd to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
A current, used collection of US is very tough, according to the person I know who has the most-complete US I've ever seen, and one of the largest overall collections I've seen.

He had a payment-processing department at a large, national company passing him duffel bags of stamps for years, until somehow it became known to the suits and they put an end to it. They didn't decide to sell to a kiloware company to prevent him from taking advantage of a corporate opportunity; they had Security make sure the envelopes got shredded to protect possible customer information (addresses). Who knows...maybe that's the right decision?

An interesting issue is that one way to generate used current stamps is to have the post office use canceled stamps as receipts for payments of postal services. One example was paying "Postage Paid by Addressee" obligations and asking for the canceled stamps. There might have been others. And I could be misremembering a step, but I don't think I am. In these cases, you're going to see full panes of commemoratives canceled with the local hand stamp, and still on the full backing sheet. Do those "count" as used stamps? Honestly, any time you see a current hand stamp, it's almost by definition "philatelic."

One question I haven't seen answered is what will end up being the accepted method for collecting used examples of new stamps. Full covers? Cut squares? "Soaked"? "Soaked" and talced? I realize that this question is still unanswerable, because we won't know until we see what future collectors want. I think it's interesting to think about. And I think it warrants keeping covers for now, if you want to be "covered." (Sorry for the "dad" pun.)

Collecting new, unused stamps is a whole 'nother matter.
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Pillar Of The Community
United States
1349 Posts
Posted 12/24/2022   01:04 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add erilaz to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Christmas is always a fun time of the year. We still get a decent amount of cards and I ask relatives to save those envelopes!

I don't get a lot of holiday cards anymore, but I've received an interesting mix of stamps on the ones I've received so far this year, all of them issues from 2021: one of the Otters in Snow, one of the Emilio Sanchez paintings, and one of the Star Wars Droids.
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Valued Member
United States
66 Posts
Posted 12/26/2022   10:16 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add jmgi2022 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
For recent issues you can find the planned production runs of US stamps from the USPS site. Click "Stamps" and then choose a stamp. Then go to the Production Specs block which should have this information. If not there than the USPS Postal Register Announcement will provide ample detail about stamps. For coils tamps you can find great info on recent and old coils from the pnc3.org - Plate Number Coil Collectors Club.

Hope this helps.


It does help, thank you!
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Valued Member
United States
418 Posts
Posted 12/26/2022   10:54 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add landoquakes to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The key isn't so much how many stamps were produced, it's how many were destroyed. One example
https://www.latimes.com/business/la...1-story.html

Even with 682 million stamps getting destroyed, the Simpson stamps aren't really a rarity. If the post office was smart, they could have done a "forever" overprint on them. Might have saved a lot of bad press. Modern used Express stamps are very difficult to find, One main reason is that many are destroyed (for the few that still use them) when the envelope is opened. Same thing for modern Priority. There sure could be some modern sleepers too. Odd issues of less than 20 to a pane are contenders.
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Valued Member
United States
28 Posts
Posted 12/28/2022   9:26 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Tevokkia to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Maybe nobody asked me, but my interest in contemporary stamps ends at about 2010. To me a stamp is about artistic achievement. You can create or recreate just about anything with todays software. Boring.

Ah, spoken like a true non-artist. The software is just a tool like any other, and was already in use well before 2010. Believe you me, it takes just as long to paint a picture in any graphics software you choose as it would to paint the same picture with physical media, barring drying time. I have yet to find a "make art" button that transfers what I'm thinking directly to canvas.

AI is it's own problem. We artists largely hate it (and I doubt any AI art has made it into a stamp yet).

Being done getting my nose out of joint, I prefer unused stamps when it comes to ultra modern: if I collect a stamp I am collecting it because I particularly like the image on a stamp or it fits one of my topical collections. I'm honestly less concerned with the current or future monetary value than I am with seeing the picture clearly.

The older a stamp gets, though, the more I like to see a postmark.
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Valued Member
United States
66 Posts
Posted 12/29/2022   07:00 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add jmgi2022 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
A quick check of the USPS site showed that they are planning to only produce 10 million of the new 40c fox stamp, being released on Jan. 5, 2023. That seems very low, even though it's a stamp to be used for additional postage.
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Valued Member
123 Posts
Posted 12/29/2022   12:22 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add chris s to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
That must be 10 million for the panes of 20 of 40 cent Red Fox. The coil production runs are usually much higher as they are intended for mass mailers. I find any definitives that are offered in pane, coil and booklet format (the 40 cent Red Fox is only in pane and coil) has the lowest planned production run for the pane and then the coil and booklet. The booklet stamps are usually sold for the longest time.

Note as one commentator wrote, another factor is how many stamps are destroyed as well as used.
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