How many stamps have you collected?

A little ABC of collectors

Good collectors - high quality collections

Many factors are decisive for a good stamp collection: It depends, for example, on the skill of the collector, the time he invests, the collecting area he develops and, of course, the financial budget that is available.

A good collection consists primarily of the highest quality brands. What counts is the top quality of each individual brand. A good philatelic collection almost always includes an interesting, as unusual as possible collecting area that differs significantly from other collecting areas and collections.

In addition, a certain completeness is of course important. The stamp collector and auctioneer Wolfgang Jakubek emphasizes that having fun with the material is particularly important: "A good collector enjoys collecting stamps three times: first when buying, second when owning, third when selling his collection."

Stamp collection area

But stamp collecting is not just a hobby for the rich. Children in particular can already create beautiful collections with a few good starting specifications.

If you don't want to start collecting blindly, you limit your area. For example by country and era - postage stamps from Germany after the war are a popular collecting area. Many collectors also specialize in motifs, for example butterflies or postage stamps with works of art on them.

Not all postage stamps are created equal

You can collect the brand in several categories. First of all, the unused, new postage stamp - the collector calls this "mint never hinged", just as the stamp is issued at the post office counter. The rubber coating of the brand must not be damaged.

In addition, the stamped version is collected, i.e. stamps that have been canceled by the postmark. In addition to mint never hinged and canceled editions, entire sheets or parts of sheets are collected, first-day covers, first-day sheets, receipts and letters of all kinds, or even the official Deutsche Post annual books.

Stamp sources

Stamp collecting starts at the mailbox when the mail flutters into the house. Other sources of supply are the local stamp shops, exchange forums of the stamp associations, stamp fairs or reputable sources of supply on the Internet.

An inexpensive and often worthwhile alternative for obtaining postage stamps is so-called kiloware - postage stamps that are sold according to weight and thrown through by the collector himself. A good source of supply for kiloware goods are the Bodelschwinghschen Anstalten Bethel, an institution for disabled people.

The "weapons" of the stamp collector

The most important weapon of the stamp collector is the Michel catalog, which is reissued every year. The "Michel" is the collector's reference work. Here you will find all stamps cataloged and numbered, here you can also read what your own stamps are worth if they are optimally preserved.

Postage stamps are sensitive - they should only be tackled with stamp tweezers. The perforation of the stamps is particularly important: torn perforations immediately reduce the value of each stamp.

Postage stamps differ not only in that they are canceled or unmounted. Some brands - such as copies of the famous post-war series of German buildings - look completely the same at first glance, but the collector can make clear differences. For example the perforation, which can be found out using a perforation key.

Many brands also differ in the watermark. You can find out if you put the stamp upside down in a small tub of white spirit. You can now see the pattern of the watermark very clearly. Incidentally, this also works with mint never hinged copies, the rubber coating of which is not damaged.

True philatelists even have a color guide with which they can identify the different color nuances of a postage stamp - here too there are sometimes big differences.

Status: January 24th, 2020, 1:20 pm