Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

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Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by deltic1575 »

You have got a bit of money to spend on stamps, do you buy a good quality classic item that is expensive but you know will only go up in value like this British Queen Victoria SG117 1867 1/- Green, plate 4
art.png
Or do you go for pot luck and buy a box of thousands of stamps not knowing what is in it like this?


art 2.jpg
(These are not the exact purchases I am considering by the way)

As I dont collect stamps for investment I am tempted by the box. I know the vast majority of it will be rubbish but I might find a couple of hundred new postmark cancellations to add to my collection or the occasional minor variety. Its the thrill of the hunt and the excitement of finding a new unexpected addition that gives me more enjoyment than looking at a single expensive stamp. However, there is the risk that I will spend a lot of money and hours hunting through a lot of dross and finding nothing new.

Are there other collectors who prefer the hunt or do you like to be certain what you are getting with your hard earned cash?

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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by Sargonnas »

My first thought would be to buy the box of pot luck. I also like to sort through heaps of stamps trying to find some new additions or nice cancellations. That said, I bought these kind of boxes before and it does pay off to have an idea of whats inside so that you would not be surprised with 500 of the same stamp.. If that was the case I'd go for the expensive one.

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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by yellowduck »

Depends what you collect.

Are you a worldwide collector? Then go for the box lot.

Do you have a GB collection you want to complete (as much as possible - few people will own a Plate 77)? Then you 'need' the QV single.

Obviously the QV stamp will be a better 'investment' compared to the box lot. (Unless you find a treasure in the box, but that's 'windfall', not good financial planning.)

The box lot can offer a few hours of fun sorting, while the QV stamp is placed in your album and you're done.

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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by Catweazle »

yellowduck wrote:
26 Sep 2021 00:39

The box lot can offer a few hours of fun sorting, while the QV stamp is placed in your album and you're done.
This.

A box lot is great fun, and they are also the best way to learn about stamps when you grab a catalogue or three and start rifling through the masses of 'stuff'.

Of course, you may not hit gold but you do learn a lot. For me, this is where the fun is. And perhaps therein lies the point of collecting, right?

In other news, I did get about 400 KGV heads and Roos for free recently after selling a box of stamps for $160 profit recently. Bought the lot at a local furniture auction, picked out a few for my collection, and sold (still comparatively cheap) the rest of the box to another collector. He was happy, I was happy. Win, win.

Now I can use said profits to buy a more expensive, fancier stamp.

So – in short – if you get a good box lot like that, why have one when you can have both? :mrgreen:

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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by ViccyVFU »


I'm not sure an SG117 plate 4 could ever be regarded as an investment stamp, as its only around the £10 - £15 mark.

So, its important to note:
When people talk about "investment", often all they are really talking about is "buying, and holding" .... not "costing up your plan for disposal" (And that, time and cost wise, usually kills all profits).

I prefer to buy "mixed lots, that have at least one thing I really want in".

Then, (always assuming I don't pay too much!!), I can drive down my "net holding costs" by disposing of all the other stuff I don't want.

When you buy mixed lots, you never want it all. But if you are not continuously disposing, then you are hoarding...
... and that's caught up with many people who live with garages / houses full of debris "that they will sell one day"
... but they don't, and you can get it all "very reasonably" from the house clearers.

I do still buy singles, where they are on my wants list (and in target price range), so I guess I do a bit of both.

I sometimes, in smaller auctions, approach the competition and tell them the exact stamp(s) I'm after.
Some of those stamps are "donated to me", or sold at deep discount, solely "not to counterbid", and have resulted in good days at auction, with little cash expended. (Naturally, I extend the same courtesy to them, on their declared interests).

In terms of "stamps on a page"... Those that cost me "a net expenditure of nothing" (or sometimes "less than nothing"!!) is where my "joy of ownership" is highest.

But I also like a good rummage :D

(People always appear to have more disposable money than me, so I just need to "buy better / smarter").



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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by PeeVee »

To answer this from my personal experience...

It depends on where you are in your stamp collecting journey.

40 years ago I would have purchased the box of pot luck as I had many holes in my collection.

Nowadays, I am only looking at improving individual stamps and would not consider buying a box of pot luck unless it was at a price "too good to be true" and then I'd still probably resist as I don't seem to have the time to spend fiddling with my collection these days.

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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by polisciguy2011 »

PeeVee wrote:
26 Sep 2021 08:39
To answer this from my personal experience...

It depends on where you are in your stamp collecting journey.

40 years ago I would have purchased the box of pot luck as I had many holes in my collection.

Nowadays, I am only looking at improving individual stamps and would not consider buying a box of pot luck unless it was at a price "too good to be true" and then I'd still probably resist as I don't seem to have the time to spend fiddling with my collection these days.

Peter
This is where I'm at as well. When I am starting a new collection area, or expanding it, I tend to buy something wholesale like the box lot pictured here (provided there's at least some description of the contents, ie, I'm sure it will have something I am trying to collect). Once I have a solid foundation, then I shift into buying to fill individual gaps.
--Zach

Collecting Interests: Benelux, Germany, Sarawak, KGV Silver Jubilee, Australia, Newfoundland

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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by Waffle »

I tend to go for pot luck, especially if it is a big offering as you never know what lurks beneath. I may have to reconsider that strategy, as at our local stamp club auction, I won a 10$ bid for a box of pot luck. Sadly it was the toilet pot, full of faecal material. Caveat emptor! At least Lions International Stamp Club got 9.50s worth of material for their next auction!
I prefer to collect UK, British Commonwealth esp Pacific area ( not excluding West Indies/Canada ) and Western Europe. At the bottom of my zone of interest is Eastern Europe and communist countries.

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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by Ubobo.R.O. »

I would blame the auctioneer for selling you that rubbish. ;)
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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by Number-O-Ne »



For a small amount, I could try the box.

I see buying a box of stamps for more than $10-20 as gambling. If I am to pay something more, I would go for the sure deal and buy the single stamp.

I also have to add I don't know much about GB or BC, and I have no idea what is so special about the green stamp mentioned above.


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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by Snap73 »

A good quality classic item.

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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by Number-O-Ne »

Snap73 wrote:
26 Sep 2021 10:34
A good quality classic item.
Thanks. That's helpful

I would never pay a box if random/unknown stamps the same amount of money that one would pay a classical and desirable stamp. For me, the answer is an easy one.


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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by Catweazle »

Number-O-Ne wrote:
26 Sep 2021 10:25


For a small amount, I could try the box.

I see buying a box of stamps for more than $10-20 as gambling. If I am to pay something more, I would go for the sure deal and buy the single stamp.

I also have to add I don't know much about GB or BC, and I have no idea what is so special about the green stamp mentioned above.

Ah, now that's when you need to read between the lines in the auction description and peer carefully at the given photos. $20 might then seem a bargain, if you know of something good that might be in there!

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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by Number-O-Ne »

Catweazle wrote:
26 Sep 2021 14:15

Ah, now that's when you need to read between the lines in the auction description and peer carefully at the given photos. $20 might then seem a bargain, if you know of something good that might be in there!
If you know what's in there before you buy it and others don't, it's not luck. You're getting paid for your knowledge. I'm talking about a blind purchase (=gamble) at one side with a "safe deal" at the other. This is how I interpret the subject of this thread.

I do similar purchases to the one you said. Recently purchased a small group of Italian covers. It was on ebay, buy it now. I paid US $30 including S&H from Italy to USA. One of the covers in the group is quoted €850 by Sassone. It's not called luck. I saw what was there and others didn't.

If I didn't know what was there, I might have still paid $30, but not 50 or 100. Knowing the contents, I could have easily paid $80 or 100. Luckily, I didn't have to...


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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by MJ's pet »

Not all collectors buy classics. But most collectors would not pass up a pot luck box of something. :idea:

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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by DigitalPhilatelist »

Knowing my luck, I'd need to get the box to get the one stamp I want. :lol:
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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by ViccyVFU »


Pot luck is usually the description given by the vendor (/auction house) "when they are too lazy to look through it" (or when they know its been stripped :o ).

By careful examination before bidding "You make your own luck".


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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by Rigs »

Both.

These types of purchases appeal in different ways.

Pot luck for me is a chance to spend a bit of time sorting through a batch of new stamps.

I find there is always something to ‘poke a bent stick at’, however trivial.

Buying a single stamp of value adds depth and context to a batch of common issues.

Hard to define the appeal though, but a part of it is the rarity and value, the other visual.

.

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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by The Pom »

Mixed pot pretty much every time for me.

The individual stamp would probably only get my attention if the seller had missed a plate variety/scarce postmark etc.
Always on the lookout for Australian pre decimal First Day Covers.

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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by steevh »

Most of my purchases are of the 'glory box' type.
Usually multiple boxes per auction, with the limiting factor that I have to carry it all by hand after, as I don't drive.

But 'pot luck' it is not -- I always view first as a) there is a huge amount of junk, stuff already picked over by dealers etc. or b) boxes that other people will pay much more for than I will.

I remove whatever I want (I collect all-world) and then break down and sell the remainder. Usually I can more than recover my costs by doing so.

I do buy the odd 'classic' from time to time, but rarely.

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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by thecloudwatcher »

I would almost always go for the high quality classic stamp.

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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by Rigs »

Rigs wrote:
26 Sep 2021 22:14

I find there is always something to ‘poke a bent stick at’, however trivial.
.
.
Speak of the devil.

This arrived from the US today - adds some pics to this thread. A thick album of 'pot luck' - full of loose stamps on piece that took my fancy. (Cost me a bit in postage, but have had a totally absorbing couple of hours sifting through it so far.)

Shoved in the back were a surprise stash of covers, some of which I scanned below.
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IMG_6825.JPG
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Australia_Hermes20210927_21530000.jpg
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France_194920210927_21485119.jpg
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France_Small20210927_21504904.jpg
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Italy20210927_23010481.jpg
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France Group20210927_23021161.jpg
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Switzerland_194520210927_22012307.jpg
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Examined by who and why?
Examined by who and why?
.

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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by Number-O-Ne »

Rigs wrote:
28 Sep 2021 00:08

Speak of the devil.

This arrived from the US today - adds some pics to this thread. A thick album of 'pot luck' - full of loose stamps on piece that took my fancy. (Cost me a bit in postage, but have had a totally absorbing couple of hours sifting through it so far.)

Shoved in the back were a surprise stash of covers, some of which I scanned below.
Nothing wrong with having fun.
That Italian cover with 6 lire single franking is a nice one. The rate is unusual. Printed matter


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Re: Which stamps would you a buy - a classic or a box of pot luck

Post by MarkM »

Rigs wrote:
28 Sep 2021 00:08
Rigs wrote:
26 Sep 2021 22:14

I find there is always something to ‘poke a bent stick at’, however trivial.
.
.
Speak of the devil.

This arrived from the US today - adds some pics to this thread. A thick album of 'pot luck' - full of loose stamps on piece that took my fancy. (Cost me a bit in postage, but have had a totally absorbing couple of hours sifting through it so far.)

Shoved in the back were a surprise stash of covers, some of which I scanned below.
Nice pickup Rigs.

I’m also one that would chance my arm on the pot luck stashes. The old world albums that Glen put up here are one of my weaknesses.

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