Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Machin News June 2016

It has been a very interesting week and I give many thanks to Ian Billings.  I have learned quite a lot over the last few days. Not only about the new issues that are due soon , but also a new £1.00 forgery that has reared its head. More about this later.

This is a new retail booklet I did not know about, it is to be issued on 28th July

As you can see it is 4 x 1st class amethyst purple Machin definitives, and 2 x 1st class Beatrix Potter stamps, self-adhesive. The Machin deifnitives are not new and should have year code O16R and source code REIGC

Mock up images of the Beatrix Potter prestige pane and front cover which we wrote about earlier have also arrived on the web (again thanks to Ian). These are posted below.

Machin forgeries seem to be in the news again and it is not just corner shops that are selling them.

There are several listings on eBay of 12 x 1st class booklets with the missing Y at the back of the neck.

There are also lots of forged booklets and singles that have been reported before with various codes too.  Left is a single with missing Y cropped from the complete forged booklet of 12. The code appears to be M13L.

One seller sold 20 of these booklets for £100.00, I have to admit I looked at this listing and did not even realise they were forgeries. I do not think  the seller realised either.

Regular readers will know that Larry Rosenblum also writes gripping articles here on Machin Mania. Larry recently contacted me to inform me that he is taking down his website he is also changing his email address. For the time being I have removed Larrys details from the header above. A new contact email address will be added when I have it.

Now I do not want to keep repeating Ians reports as with the news of this forged £1.00 value so I will just add a link to his blog and you can see it for yourself. ENJOY

Friday, 10 June 2016

No Post & Go Mania in New York, but Three Machin Exhibits and a Useful Show App

I mentioned in a previous post that the Royal Mail stand at World Stamp Show NY2016, outsourced to a local stamp dealer, had no Machins for sale. They did, however, have two Post & Go machines, selling the New York skyline design from the Sea Travel set and the Union Flag design. 
After an initial bit of activity on the first morning, probably mostly dealers, there seemed to be little interest in the machines. The above picture was taken on the afternoon of the first day. While I did not monitor the machines carefully, I never saw anyone using them whenever I passed by.

I'm pleased to report that there were three Machin exhibits at the show. I had seen all three previously, but each had some improvements. Steve McGill showed his comprehensively researched "Britain's Marvelous Machins" and won a gold medal. 

Tony Walker's spectacular "The Great Britain £sd Machin Definitives 1967-1971" also won a gold. Above I show a page from his exhibit that I photographed. (Click the image to see a larger version, sorry the bottom part is a bit blurred.) It includes two cylinder blocks of the 4d sepia with paper folds. Remarkably, both blocks come from the same lift, the group of six to eight sheets that are gathered and perforated as a unit.

Finally, Larry Haber's "The Half-Penny (decimal) Machin" won a large vermeil. It now includes the only known solo usage of the 1/2d on cover. (There is also one postcard known franked with a lone 1/2d).

Finally, I would like to commend the show team on the smartphone app that they created. This was very well done, and I found it very helpful before, during, and after the show. (Since the show ended I have been referring to notes that I took in the app while I was at the show.)

The picture above shows the main page of the app to give you an idea of its scope. One of the main advantages of the app was that all the lists were searchable. I could go to the exhibit list, search for "Machin," and get a list of all the exhibits containing Machins, including the frame numbers. I could also search by exhibitor name. I could do similar searches for dealers, meetings and clubs. Finding a dealer using the search (or scrolling the alphabetical list) gives the booth number, and another press brings up the floor map with the location of the booth highlighted. There was a reminder system for events; I could choose an event and have the app remind me 10, 30 or 60 minutes before the event started.

I think this app was well-designed and executed, and I hope future shows take ideas from it and create their own app.


Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Unusual Machin Pane

I spotted a private booklet on eBay that appeared to be a pane of 2 x 2p,  2 x 3p and 2  x  1p Machins.

This curiosity was a puzzle to me and I very nearly placed a bid as it intrigued me somewhat. Most unusual I thought to myself what on earth is it?

Starting at £3.00 + a small fee for postage and packing it looked like a bargain. I was just about to hit the button with my offer and suddenly froze.

Then I remembered that I had seen one before, but where?

I then dug out and scanned around in an old stock book of mine that contained curiosities and private banes / booklets etc. It had not seen the light of day for quite a while.

Browsing through it I came across something very similar. What I found was a pair of booklets of the same design but with the selvedge on the left rather than the one offered which had the selvedge on the right.

Here is in image of the private booklets I dug out. They were produced for the Tenth North East Philatelic Weekend 1986 at the Airport Hotel Newcastle. These also contain what appears to be mixed Machin panes.

It is in fact an optical illusion . Looking closer you can see the booklet actually contains three separate blocks of Machins.stamps. Six x 2p , four x 3p and two x 1p.

 On the left there are 16.5p and 17p  Framas,