Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

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Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Perften »

I have come into being with a rather large Roo/ KGV collection.

Unfortunately they are hinged (not glued) to pages, and I see toning is starting to go rampant. Mostly used (although some very fine mint multiples too).

So I experimented by removing 2 low value roos and then soaked for an hour in luke warm water. Carefully then them pat dry with tissue then dry out more, then into the hagner, and flatten out between thick book.

The result was FANTASTIC, the hinge fell off easily, toning almost went, and one had that horrible envelope adhesive all over the back, well that fell off too to reveal a clean back and watermark visible. Job done. Er not quite. I have over 400 roos like this!

Too or not to soak, or leave AS IS to rust away?!

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to an old toning album

Post by Global Administrator »

I would never leave for an hour. Paper has "size" in it that keeps the fibres rigid, and it breaks down fast in water.

HOT water from tap and 10 mins or so, and then rinse carefully in more hot water, and into a drying book for a week with a few heavy books on top -
Image
https://stampboards.com/viewtopic.php?t=3329

Do NOTTTTTTTTTTTT put damp stamps into Hagners!! They'll get mouldy again in weeks. :idea:

Mould grows on damp paper.

Will improve most things, and if aging is becoming evident, get onto it fast.

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to an old toning album

Post by Perften »

Thankyou, this is going to take a LONG time and a nice project. I then need to go over each one with ACSC. I will post pics of final result in time (obviously mint not soaking).

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to an old toning album

Post by 32_seeker »

I don't wish to sidetrack the original post, just to deepen my understanding why a short soak in hot water would be preferred for Roos or the KGV definitives.

What sizing was used on Aussie paper of this period?

The traditional "external" sizing I recall was starch or gelatin, which makes the paper less water-absorbent and improves the surface for printing. These are both water-soluble, but can be chemically modified to the point where they are insoluble.

(aside: I generally work with early Canada. There are printings of Canada QV stamps to which hot water is very unkind; I've had best success with cold water / long soak.)

It could be argued that the presence of sizing provides a nutrient source for mould, and contributes to the acidity of the paper, making it the source of the initial problem. Thanks in advance for any thoughts.

Your project sounds exciting, have fun. Before and after pictures would be cool to see.

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to an old toning album

Post by Global Administrator »

I'll remember all that if I ever soak early Canada. This thread was about foxed Roos, and a short hot water soak works best. LONG soaking is foolish for anything really IMHO for many reasons, but go right ahead with your early Canada if you claim it works best for them. :)
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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to an old toning album

Post by Brit-Col »

Please do say some more about this "size" thing. First I've ever heard of it.

And is it related to physical dimensions? I.e., would a stamp shrink due to excessive soaking?

BC

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to an old toning album

Post by Global Administrator »

This thread is actually about soaking slightly foxed Roos.

We have gone to Canada early stamps, "to what is paper sizing"!

I repeat with Roos short baths are best, indeed the possibility of ink runs/fades and paper limpness are the same for every stamp in my belief.

http://www.paperslurry.com/2016/03/10/sizing-and-paper-watch-this-to-learn/

With sizing added, both watercolors and wine will sit on the top surface of the paper for a bit longer. The above shows how the line is has drastically crisper edges on the sized handmade paper. Sized paper is generally tougher and stronger, as well.

INTERNAL SIZING

In the papermaking process, sizing can be applied directly into the pulp. This is called internal sizing, and most hand papermakers use a chemical called ‘alkyl ketene dimer’, which protects and coats each fiber. Suppliers like Carriage House Paper and Twinrocker carry this item.

EXTERNAL SIZING

Sizing can also be applied externally (also called surface or tub sizing), after the paper has be formed, pressed, and dried. Gelatin, wheat starch, and egg whites are more common external sizing options.
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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to an old toning album

Post by drusus59 »

Better still boil a kettle,put the stamps in a plastic bowl.Pour on the water,everthing should come off in a minute or two(make sure no red paper is placed with everything else).Remove with tweezers on to piece of thick kitchen roll.Damp off excess water.leave to one side and within an hour or two all done!!
Just when I think Im out, I get dragged back in again.

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by ViccyVFU »

Perften wrote: Too or not to soak, or leave AS IS to rust away?
I think by consensus we all exclude the last option, unless you plan to dispose of them in the next couple of months. Your later replies indicate you'd really like to keep them all "as fresh as possible".

For the used stamps, quick dip and rinse seems to be the best choice. If the toning does disappear when soaked, then presumably its gum toning, rather than foxing? Anyway, if you are getting results you find acceptable, go with that.

As for the mint ones, I'd tend to use a "sweat box", which sounds fairly crude, but is no more than a sealed container with very high humidity. When removing the backing hinge (or paper) from a mint example (N.B. NEVER the other way round), you are always looking to minimise gum disturbance, so it can be quite a slow process.

(Some take a day or two in the box, and that's each - its not really bulk processing).

Its important to dry the recently denuded stamp face downwards, again to give the gum minimum disruption.
"Flatten" is a process you can do later, once the gum is fully dried.

For the very few mint that a sweatbox cannot part, then there are chemical options, but I hesitate to run there first.

As mentioned earlier, by others, you can go cheap and use kitchen roll and the likes, but the fibres, like all paper, often contain chemicals which on modern stamps have little effect, but on old issues can seep in. I would counsel against the flatten stage using kitchen roll - you want something far more pH neutral, if possible.

If you are planning this as a long term project, best bite the bullet and get the right tools (like a drying book). Its one of those things that seems unnecessary, until you get one, then you start to wonder how you got by without it.

You noted another important consideration: Its best to start on sacrificials (low value), and work your expertise to a level to handle the more valuable material confidently. Doing it the other way round can lead to "disappointment" (to put it mildly).

So before racing to your first batch of soakers, take some time to familiarise yourself with the whole task ahead, and mentally sort the whole batch into increasing difficulty levels.

Well, that's what I do when faced with a disintegrating collection.

Good luck.

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Perften »

Some wonderful expert opinions her as per normal. And I'm glad Glen chimed in i was hoping he would provide his opinion on this in particular, due to knowledge of the subject area Australian roos. Thankfully the KGV's are mint. I believe the toning may possibly emanate from the hinges but it may actually be from the paper in the album (its that old paper with thin blue lines), that I am not yet sure. Quickly took out of hagner to dry separately for a while and yes, I will work my way to the higher values from the cheaper lots. Thanks

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Perften »

Not long until the unveiling of scans. So have have done about 8 hagners worth of stamps. Made myself 2 sweat boxes, and the results on the mint stamps has been good. Generally have been able to make 75% as appearing muh.
The drying out of the gum and curling is the trickiest bit, I've had one or 2 perf separations but getting the hang of it. A few discoveries on the way, 2 shilling roos in a pair 2nd or 3rd wmk with os appear MUH, a 1 shilling roo 2nd or 3rd wmk is CTO with gum and wmk inverted, so I didn't soak that one obviously. Getting there, carefully but surely.

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by vikingeck »

Perften wrote:Not long until the unveiling of scans. So have have done about 8 hagners worth of stamps. Made myself 2 sweat boxes, and the results on the mint stamps has been good. Generally have been able to make 75% as appearing muh.
The drying out of the gum and curling is the trickiest bit, I've had one or 2 perf separations but getting the hang of it. A few discoveries on the way, 2 shilling roos in a pair 2nd or 3rd wmk with os appear MUH, a 1 shilling roo 2nd or 3rd wmk is CTO with gum and wmk inverted, so I didn't soak that one obviously. Getting there, carefully but surely.
So you have stamps hinged in an album, you sweat some mint ones and they are "MUH or 75% MUH"?

I don't think so!

"MUH=Mint unhinged" means "MINT NEVER HINGED" to most folks. It does not mean "Mint with the hinge removed!"

That would be light hinged at best or part original gum (part o.g.)
whatever it is -------it's better than a poke in eye with a wet umbrella !

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Perften »

When the gum on the back becomes wet (due to humidity of the sweat box) and the hinge literally falls off leaving no mark whatsoever, would you really ever know there was a hinge there? I don't think so.

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by vikingeck »

"UNHINGED" thinking!

:roll: :roll: :roll: :roll: :roll:
whatever it is -------it's better than a poke in eye with a wet umbrella !

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Perften »

vikingeck wrote:"UNHINGED" thinking!

:roll: :roll: :roll: :roll: :roll:
:lol:

Or maybe your just too "hinged" to convention!

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by ViccyVFU »

I'd like to think we'll let the scans do the talking.

I have used a sweatbox on Victorian stamps, mainly because of fugitive inks, and I am aware of the phenomenon Perften refers to.

Where the hinge was placed with the lightest of moisture on it (rather than the stamp glue itself) it can come away very cleanly. But for me, its extremely rare where "its not perceptible at all".

I would rather refer to it as "No Gum Disturbance" rather than "MUH" (for obvious reasons), but I'm sure there are less scrupulous people out there that might try to pop it firmly in the top category for mint.

Sounds like you are having fun experimenting, which is, after all, a valid extension of the hobby. Looking forward to seeing the results.

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Perften »

Quite a few of the mint stamps after removing the hinge with tweezer showed no mark. Yes the scan may show something you're right, time will tell. If I see a mark I of course will describe it as such "gum disturbance" or even "light hinged". Depends on the individual stamp at the time of scanning and post image processing analysis. Heck i know for sure a few will still be described as "hinged" where some of the hinge remained.

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Global Administrator »

Perften wrote:When the gum on the back becomes wet (due to humidity of the sweat box) and the hinge literally falls off leaving no mark whatsoever, would you really ever know there was a hinge there? I don't think so.
OMG. :roll:

Sweating is a mug's game. It LIQUEFIES the gum. It then runs into all the perf tips. Ruining them forever, leaving them hard and un-natural looking, and goopy. The gum is then also un-naturally shiny, never sits flat, and clearly looks fake, which it basically is. Even the brain dead ebay Bunnies can pick these disasters, and that is saying something.

"MUH" my *ass. :roll:
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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Perften »

No worries, will just do it your way and rip the hinges off when it's dry leaving gaping holes and describe it as "mint with hinge removed without the mugs method as advised by Glen".

Genius!

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by ViccyVFU »

Global Administrator wrote: "MUH" my *ass.
I think you'll find that's spelt "MWAH". :D :D (Mint Without Added Hinge??)

A sweatbox, whilst I understand is not a dealers choice of method due to long timescales and varying results, still has an important place in the collectors toolbox for stamps originating elsewhere in the world (specifically early GB).

I couldn't comment on its relevance to Australian stamps under discussion on this topic, but its indispensable on fugitive and double fugitive ink printings (not that mint hinged example come up that often anyway).

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Clive »

Its important to dry the recently denuded stamp face downwards, again to give the gum minimum disruption.
"Flatten" is a process you can do later, once the gum is fully dried.
Don't really agree with this.

Glen has this topic wrapped up as far as Australian pre-decimal stamps are concerned, in my view.

For Australian used stamps:

'Flattening' will always work better if the stamp is slightly damp when popped into the drying book - indeed it's a very effective method of removing or minimising creases.

Experience has inclined me to think that tepid to warm water for about ten to fifteen minutes or such time as paper, gunk and hinge residues have come away from the stamp. Rinse - quickly - in another bowl of clean water.

Just be a bit careful with chalk-surfaced stamps - I've not had any problems giving them a quick soak but Glen cautions against it and his wisdom on the matter is not something to be taken lightly. Fortunately there aren't many, and ditto fugitive inks.

Remove excess water by placing stamp on a clean tea towel until just damp. Into the Desert Magic, place a few kilos on top and forget for a few days.

On that note, there really is nothing that works as well as Desert Magic drying books.

Soak stamps with coloured paper attaching to them by themselves.

Mint stamps with toned gum?

There really is no good answer to this dilemma. Soak, and it's pounds to peanuts the stamp winds up being mint no gum.

If perfs or other parts of the stamp have rust, in my view it's a lost battle before you start, although when there was nothing much to lose I've occasionally had some limited success with Glen's method of a quick scalding with boiling water.

Hinge remnants are in my view one of the biggest contributors to toning-foxing-rust.

There are proprietary products that supposedly can get rid of rust, for example claimed to be very good on rusty perfs, but haven't tried them so can't comment.

When/if you are lucky enough to have banished rust and toning from your stamps, store them in quality housing. Airing them regularly, i.e. just taking them out and gazing lovingly at them is great, but not in damp or especially humid weather.

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by ViccyVFU »

Clive wrote:
Its important to dry the recently denuded stamp face downwards, again to give the gum minimum disruption.
"Flatten" is a process you can do later, once the gum is fully dried.
Don't really agree with this.

Glen has this topic wrapped up as far as Australian pre-decimal stamps are concerned, in my view.

For Australian used stamps:

'Flattening' will always work better if the stamp is slightly damp when popped into the drying book - indeed it's a very effective method of removing or minimising creases.
I'm not sure whether its a disagreement, or just misunderstanding.

Your quote of me is from the last line of a sweatbox procedure for mint stamps.

I'd already agreed Glens was the definitive process for the used ones.

I respect Glens reticence to use the procedure, if that's the results he's experienced. There are many differences, including climatic, available time, commercial pressures and simple expediency that bode against it as a "go to" technique for simple parting of partially adhered mint stamps.

I've never experienced liquefaction, which would imply either too much water used or too hot (i.e. trying to go too quickly). In my experience, adhesive running into perf ends is either from a re-gumming attempt done poorly (the legendary blind nun, on her day off, perhaps?), or some joker has tried to re-distribute the gum, and again, been rather sloppy in technique. Both these are to deceive collectors, mine is merely "to preserve without degradation".

The fact many museum conservators use it does indicate it has a place on the options list, even for non fugitive inks. The advantage of the technique over other, maybe more hasty / commercial / expedient alternatives is that done properly, the stamp will rarely drop a grade.

(The one example of "going up a grade" is a red herring, its very very rare)

Hence a MH becomes a tidy MH, not a MNG (or to give it a better title DEFM).

It appears Perften has reported some satisfactory results using it, after realising that most of the toning was on the album page or hinge (not the stamp itself).

So I am in alignment with all the expertise shared here, but retain my sweatbox for the really difficult cases (even overseas stamps).

My advice is always "Solicit widely, but adopt what works for you".

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Global Administrator »

ViccyVFU wrote:
I've never experienced liquefaction, which would imply either too much water used or too hot (i.e. trying to go too quickly). In my experience, adhesive running into perf ends is either from a re-gumming attempt done poorly (the legendary blind nun, on her day off, perhaps?), or some joker has tried to re-distribute the gum, and again, been rather sloppy in technique.
You may never have, but I have seen 100s of ruined mint stamps where some amateur genius had played with a sweat box.

Put a mint 1932 5/- Bridge in one, and it is DOOMED, no matter how brilliant you might regard your skills. GUARANTEED gum soaked and ruined perf tips. *GUARANTEED*.
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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by ViccyVFU »

Global Administrator wrote: You may never have, but I have seen 100s of ruined mint stamps where some amateur genius had played with a sweat box.

Put a mint 1932 5/- Bridge in one, and it is DOOMED, no matter how brilliant you might regard your skills. GUARANTEED gum soaked and ruined perf tips. *GUARANTEED*.
Unfortunately, I have seen lots of ruined too, especially GB Victorian (which I know is off thread, but damage literally runs into £1000's).

Its not for everyone, its not for every stamp (some glues just don't budge), but as a possibility, its out there.

Start cheap, get skilled, or find someone who can do it for you.

As for the Aussie 5/-. Point taken. I'd always try to research anything of value before assuming one technique is best, especially unfamiliar items.

That's why I like it here - so much free advice and different perspectives.

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Global Administrator »

Australia 1920s/30s Commems were printed on coarse blotting paper basically. Scott Paper Towel type paper. Sturt, Swan, 3d Kooka, All 4 Kingsford Smith, Bridges, 1/- Lyre, 3d Air etc no-one with a brain cell TOUCHES these re sweating.

GB 1840-80s etc were printed on tough, hard, fine quality paper. Different animals totally. This thread is about AUSTRALIA stamps I have a feeling, for some reason. 8)
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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by vikingeck »

and 75% MNH where we can't see the hinge and wouldn't ever know it was there !! :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
whatever it is -------it's better than a poke in eye with a wet umbrella !

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by ViccyVFU »

Global Administrator wrote:Australia 1920s/30s Commems were printed on coarse blotting paper basically. Scott Paper Towel type paper. Sturt, Swan, 3d Kooka, All 4 Kingsford Smith, Bridges, 1/- Lyre, 3d Air etc no-one with a brain cell TOUCHES these re sweating.

GB 1840-80s etc were printed on tough, hard, fine quality paper. Different animals totally. This thread is about AUSTRALIA stamps I have a feeling, for some reason. 8)
Well, it took a few comments to extract the gold from you, but its clear now that your reticence with the technique refers to a very specific period of issues, printed on different paper stock.

As for talking about UK stamps, in both cases I made it clear I was talking off topic, more around the technique itself, which Perften is actually using on his Roos / KGV with reported spectacular success (Yet to see the scans - I'm looking forward to that).

Your point that he should not extend this technique into the commems of the 20-30's is clear (and appreciated).

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Global Administrator »

Global Administrator wrote:Australia 1920s/30s Commems were printed on coarse blotting paper basically. Scott Paper Towel type paper. Sturt, Swan, 3d Kooka, All 4 Kingsford Smith, Bridges, 1/- Lyre, 3d Air etc no-one with a brain cell TOUCHES these re sweating.
This scan below of a 1932 1/-Lyrebird shows what I mean.

The 1000s of fine paper fibres at tips get DESTROYED by regumming and sweating. Bog Basic Physics.

Gum the sheets first and tear them apart, stamp by stamp, and you get THESE perf tips shown below.

Add gum AFTERWARDS and it runs into these 1000s of fibres, and gooks and gunks them up. No amateur fiddler with stamps notices these minor things of course, and cheerfully pronounce to the world their vandalism as leaving their fiddled with stamps as "MUH". :roll: :roll: :roll:

Until one day they try and sell their bungling to a real dealer or auction house and get told they have destroyed value.

This attractive stamp with a hinge remain, versus this stamp with solidly gunked up perfs tips that the Amateur Hour vandal has created by sweating that hinge, is worth LESS that way.
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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by ViccyVFU »

Thanks Glen, you are preaching to the converted on these absorbent issues.

I've updated my notes accordingly for that series and time period.

One of the great benefits of this board!

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Perften »

The restoration savior process is well on the way. I have done the roos and kgv's. Most roos are used, but I will upload the unused ones first. Reasonably happy with the results, given these came out of a RUSTY old quadrille album from North QLD, they are now safely housed and the deterioration has been halted!

I have NOT really sorted them by WMK yet, or studied them, but I did find an inverted 2nd WMK 1/ green roo with gum so it may be CTO. Any idea on CV on that one? The centering is a bit off unfortunately.

The next steps: scan the mint kgv's. Then back to the album to removal the rest of the aus pre dec blocks and states. Then the world.

The verdict? Ok I admit defeat, I can't say MUH I will say gum disturbance with sporadic evidence of toning on some (that I couldn't remove).

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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Perften »

And the used (yes i know there are throwaways, warts and all).
Only 2 stamps were lost in the cleaning process (low values).

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Clive
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Location: Hobart, Tasmania

Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Clive »

Perften,

That's a nice array of roos.

The 1/- with inverted watermark is actually a first watermark, not second. All 1/- stamps in first watermark with the 3 December 1913 cancel are inverted watermark.

Value? With that stamp, perfs look okay although it is badly off-centre, so maybe $40-50 on a good day.

Also, have another look at your halfpenny, 1d, 3d, 4d, 5d and 9d stamps - there are nice first watermark CTO copies in there. 8) A few have lumps out of them but still nice to have.

Also 6d brown and possibly blue, and 2/- maroon. If you can post bigger scans we can tell you a bit more.

Clive

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Princestamps
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Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Princestamps »

Getting them off the toned material is the first priority, if there is gungty hinges, I slice off the stamp hinge and all.

Then my friend, the only woman I could ever love - Janola comes into play with hot water and BAM! fabulous stamps. If its mint on toned gungy paper, unless its rare or I really want it, I won't buy it.
Militantly left wing and proud - but not a communist.

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Perften
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Location: Victoria, Australia

Re: Preserving stamps hinged to old and toning album pages

Post by Perften »

A few of the shockingly badly hinged KGV's from the mugs sweat box..
The Vic is obviously more ratty, is inverted wmk.

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