I collect run of the mill Machins and have yet to get to grips with specialisation, which Catalogue should I use?
I myself, as you may have noticed if you read this blog do not actually collect " run of the mill" stamps as you put it, so the best advise I can give is to use the latest up to date information available at this time for basic issues (both mint and used).
"Collect British Stamps" published by Stanley gibbons is produced each year, in full colour it will give you a basic listing and market values * of all GB stamps including Machins, this is within most collectors budgets. Price Aprox £10.00.
My first choice however would be The SG "Concise" Catalogue, this is probably the best on the market at this time for an average collector. It also gives prices and more general information to that of the basic "Collect GB" described above.
This (Consice) is also now printed in colour, which in my opinion gives it more value for money than previous printings (pre 2004). Deeper background information on the other GB issues is also listed, which includes special issues and all reigns from Victoria to the current date of publication.
Price wise compared to other mainstream and specialised catalogues it is relatively inexpensive. A new or latest copy from Stan Gib with delivery, can be purchased for around £32.00
* Please note: Stanley Gibbons do not publish supplements so there are no updates to these catalogues, which means you have to renew every couple of years to keep abreast of market values. Saying this Gibbons values are well over inflated, so it pays to deduct a third from their prices for a reasonable valuation.
If you just need a illustrated check list and are not to bothered about updated price lists I recommend that you visit one of the online auction sites such as eBay or Yahoo where you can purchase an older or used copy of the Concise for much less.
This, the latest issue (left) was up for grabs last week from a private seller at £18.95, postage and packing was extra, again not an over expensive buy ( in fact quite cheap ) P& P was in the region of £2.50.