Well I fib - it is not a "million" stamps. But I can assure you it is over 100,000 stamps, and someone reading this WILL own them, post free in the next few weeks!
"The Box" was a large carton filled with off-paper stamps Norm had accumulated over the years. As many know, Norm is one of a near extinct breed - the true "Whole World" collector. His aim I think he once posted, is to try and collect one example of EVERY simplified stamp from EVERY country.
So when buying collections and mixed lots and stockbooks etc, Norm took out and kept the ones he did not have already, and in general I gather the balance then were tossed into "The Box". And "The Box" over time got larger, and larger, and larger .........
Anyway, I did a deal with him, and Norm was happy with the outcome, and mailed it up, and that box will soon be someone else's "Box"!
What is in there? Well even Norm did not really know, as he'd been assembling it for many years and had lost track.
All I can say was that when spread out on the bed as you can see, it was several inches thick in places with stamps, and off paper stamps are incredibly dense - a small handful is way over 1000 stamps.
The vast majority looked used to me but I did see some mint, even MUH imprint blocks among it.
Taking a look at them when spread out on my bed to photograph, I'd state the obvious that Australia and AAT and earlier "States" component was a lot stronger than you'd get, if an American or a British collector had assembled them, for obvious locale reasons.
There looked to be HUNDREDS of Australia KGV heads spread around there .. with lots of 1d reds etc sighted. Norm said he thinks a complete KGV used booklet pane went into "The Box" at some point at the time he added all the other KGV heads.
I also saw quite a few Kangaroos - and even noted several 2/- 3rd watermarks, which of course are $35 stamps EACH these days.
As you can see from the photo, I saw things like postally used GB blocks of 10 of the £5 Machins, and blocks of other different £5 types, and even some of the seldom seen massive £10 GB "Britannia" mega high values.
They are all in "The Box", along with higher face values from Australia, NZ, USA, Hong Kong, Canada - and you name it!
And I saw Cinderellas, and revenues, and fiscals, when nosing around in it, and when popping stamps back into "The Box".
So I thought I'd kick off the 2010 Financial Year with a giveaway from me, as a personal "thank you" to all our members for their ongoing support of stampboards.
I'll have a word to our good friends at Australia Post, and see if they might be able to find a few extra goodies we can add to the Prize Pot. Watch this space.
Every stamp collector's dream ... a BED full of stamps! (Many more photos below)
And as is very plainly evident these are NOT just all common letter rate stamps. It is a genuine mixed lot. Looking though it spread on the bed I saw all kinds of better stamps in there - from all over the place. From Queen Victoria issues onwards.
The number of stamps here will be massive .... to WIN you need to guess closer than anyone else, HOW many there are here! And OK it will NOT be anything remotely like a "million" stamps - that much is very obvious and is a term of speech - but boy there really are a LOT of stamps here!
We spread the carton out on a large sized bed as you can see, and even then they were MANY stamps deep in places .. often several inches deep.
1. The VERY many 1000s of stamps in the photos above and below have been carefully counted by Moderator MargoZ. The exact number of stamps counted has been emailed to senior member GJ50. Gary is a leading figure in organised philately here, and is Immediate Past-President of the Australian Philatelic Federation, (APF) and is a Vice-President of the huge "Australia 2013" International. Gary has agreed to a strict vow of secrecy until the competition closes, and kindly agreed to record the figure.
2. For obvious reasons we cannot tell you the WEIGHT of this lot - although clearly, it is VERY many kilos - a huge "Lighthouse" factory carton, that houses 2 boxes of 10 large stockbooks to be exact. Margo is shown holding it here on the bedroom deck.
3. At 9pm on the day we reach our one Millionth Stampboards post, the competition will close. REPEAT - At 9pm AEDST (Sydney time) on that day the competition will be deemed closed. Any number posted on the competition thread after that point will be void. All members are eligible to post.
4. As soon as practical after that time, GJ50 will post the winning number of stamps in the competition thread (this may not be immediate though, depending on the time of day or night the actual post is made - so please be patient.) Or if Margoz or Glen Stephens or fromdownunder are up and about, they'll post the number, and ask GJ50 to verify it later on.
5. Neither MargoZ, GJ50, nor Glen Stephens or fromdownunder will be eligible to enter the competition. After all, Norm does not want "The Box" back again!
6. The winner of this competition will be the first member to post the exact number of stamps shown in the photos here, as counted by Margo already.
7. Should there be more than one exact number posted, the earliest post with the exact number will win.
8. If the exact number is not posted, then the closest number either above or below the exact number will win.
9. In the event that there is a tie with rule 8, then rule 7 will be used to decide a winner. i.e. if the actual number of stamps is 232675 and member "A" guesses 232671 on July 6, and Member "B" guess 232679 on July 8 ... despite them both being only 4 numbers off, Member "A" wins - being first to post from these 2 members.
10. Members may have as MANY guesses as they wish. You can post 50 guesses in a row of 50 posts if you wish. Or 500 guesses in a row. There is no restriction. You can post commentary and humour as well in your post, as long as there is a guess number in there somewhere! 8)
11. Members do not need to post in any order. i.e. one member can guess at 90021, and the next member can guess at 192065 and the next member at 243689. That is fine ... the powerful search function on https://www.stampboards.com" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; will AFTER the close time, determines who got the exact number, or the closest number to it. If you really think there are about xxx,000 stamps here for instance, you can cover a lot of numbers either side if you wish, via many separate posts.
12. However only ONE number guess per post. If you want to pick 25 numbers you need to make 25 separate posts etc, so our winner checking will be quick and easy. NO edits are permitted - if you make an error, make a new post - any post showing an edit code is Disqualified.
13. Do NOT use commas or spaces on ANY GUESS so that checking the winner will be possible via the search facility. If your guess is 225037 stamps do NOT type it as 225,037 or 225 037 - you MUST enter it simply as 225027 - OK? NO spaces or commas, or that post is INVALID.
14. The prize is all the stamps you see in these photos below. I'll mail these Registered, post free anywhere in the world, via secure post. If an overseas winner prevails, no problems - even though shipping will be several $100s to some countries. The deal is the recipient mails me back the FRANKING I use, via secure post - as I will use things worth near face value when cancelled. As you can imagine this carton is VERY heavy.
15. This competition is meant to be FUN, and a test of your stamp guessing skills. All current members may enter, and you can make as many posts as you wish. One competition last year we had saw a "clever" young USA member set up a automated "posting bot" which was of course cheating, and not in the spirit of the game - or this board. His number actually won, but as he was suspended for LIFE once Admin had determined this cheating, the next closest member's guess was the winner. The old adage "Cheats Never Prosper" was proven most prophetic in this case.
16. The winner will get a special 10 Carat diamond bauble next to their handle - "I was Poster number 1 million" - I'll see if we can do the same for those members logged on at that momentous minute we cross the million post mark. 8)
17. The judge's (i.e. Glen Stephens) decision is absolutely final. 8) And I will ask that fromdownunder assist with adjudication and monitoring the thread, as it is his much beloved "The Box" involved. So do not break any Rules, as upsetting Norm is never wise policy!
This pile of stamps on the bed was inches thick in much of it. Indeed it took us ages to get the stamps all BACK in the carton!
Remember in the event of a tie of the 2 guesses being the closest, the FIRST to post wins out, so start NOW! Repeat - earliest or closest guess wins in the event of a tie.
Do not bother checking if someone else has posted the same number .. too bad. This thread will get to 50,000 posts pretty readily I have no doubt, so just post a guess and move onto the next one.
We are fast zooming up on 5,000 members, so please help us get there faster, by simply sending this link - https://www.stampboards.com/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=20112 - to some stamp friends! They might well win "The Box" -- shipped FREE to them anywhere on the globe!
Sign your partner up - or the kids .. it is all great fun.
And finally, UN-CHECK this box when making each post, or you'll get a lot of email arriving!
Bureau Manager Noel Leahy today kindly offered us one of these superb productions shown below, that only 300 were ever issued Worldwide, as you can see. He had kept a couple aside for such an occasion.
Retail of these Deluxe folders was $A750 each as you can see! The same deal applies with postage as with the Carton of stamps .. I will mail it insured post anywhere on earth free of cost to you.
The runner up (hence winner) will be the person who posted the correct number .. but later than someone else did.
OR, if no-one got correct number but guessed 3 numbers away, and 2 persons did so, the earliest post wins and the other post gets this magic prize.
A really magnificent prize, and many thanks to Noel and John for their continued support of stampboards.
So post your guesses folks .. as many as you wish - the rules are above. Remember the FIRST to post the number wins if two members get it, so post early - and post often!