The 6c Black Transportation Stamp of the 1967-73 Centennial Issue Part Two
The scan below shows the difference between die 1a and die 2:
Unlike the paper used by the BABN, the paper used by the CBN is a vertical wove rather than a horizontal wove. The colour of the paper is very light cream when viewed against a stark white background, but is quite white when compared to the standard dull papers used by the CBN for the other values of the series. The paper also shows a light horizontal ribbing on the paper surface, that is often only visible when you view the stamps are viewed at an oblique angle to the light source. Under magnification, the paper surface appears completely smooth, and is lightly coated.
Unitrade lists this stamp as existing only on low fluorescent paper. I do think that is basically correct, but like most values in this set, there are several different varieties of low fluorescent paper, that differ in terms of the overall colour under UV light, as well as the presence and concentration of fluorescent fibres embedded in the paper.
The first two are shown in the picture below:
The block on the left is a low fluorescent greyish colour under UV. Upon close inspection, there is a low density concentration of low fluorescent fibres embedded in the paper. The block on the right is a low fluorescent ivory colour, and also has a low density concentration of low fluorescent fibres in the paper. This paper also contains very few brownish woodpulp fibres embedded in the paper as well.
The next picture shows the next two varieties:
So, the main differences between these papers is thus their overall colour under UV light. So, all told, I have found four varieties of paper fluorescence on the untagged stamps.
These stamps display a complete uniformity of colour, with the ink being a deep greyish black. The colour of course stays the same under UV light.
In contrast to the comb perforations found on the BABN printings, these stamps are line perforated, just like the other CBN stamps. The gauge measures 11.85 on all the stamps and blocks that I have examined. This conforms to my expectations, as these stamps were issued in 1972 after the earlier 11.95 gauge machines were withdrawn. The standard catalogues do refer to this as 12, but it is actually 11.85 on an instanta gauge.
The gum on these stamps is a white, smooth PVA gum that has a satin sheen.
These stamps exist precancelled. According to Unitrade, the paper type on which these are found is also low fluorescent. I only have a very limited number of blocks of the precancel from which to work, and these are all the first variety of paper: the greyish one, but with a few medium fluorescent fibres in the paper as well as the low fluorescent ones. I have also found a similar variety of paper, but with a greyish white appearance under UV. This raises the question as to whether these papers are other varieties of low fluorescent paper that can be found without the precancel, and whether or not the other varieties of low fluorescent paper can be found precancelled as well. I suspect they can, and will update this post accordingly, as I find new varieties.
Printed on the Gummed Side
This stamp exists printed on the gummed side. It is not nearly as rare as other printed on the gummed side stamps are, listing at a mere $25 in Unitrade. The paper that I have found this on so far is the low fluorescent ivory paper discussed above. It is an easy stamp to mistake for an uncancelled used stamp as the printing quality is so clear. But it can be quite readily be identified by the amount of surface sheen, which is much more than for a normal mint stamp. The scan below shows the sole example in my stock:
The Tagged Sheet Stamps - Unitrade #460fp through 460fpxxii
The tagged stamps exist on two basic varieties of paper, ignoring the fluorescent properties. The first is the horizontal ribbed paper that I have already described under the untagged stamps. The second type of paper is the same in all respects, except that it has an entirely smooth surface, and no ribbing whatsoever.
The paper fluorescence levels on the tagged stamps differ quite markedly from the untagged stamps and differ depending on whether the paper is smooth or ribbed.
Unitrade lists the ribbed papers as existing with three levels of fluorescence:
- Low fluorescent.
- Fluorescent (between low fluorescent and medium fluorescent)
- Medium fluorescent.
This paper is the same as the low fluorescent greyish white paper that I looked at earlier under the untagged stamps. Two of the three blocks that I have of this printing are on this paper. I do have another block on a greyer paper as well. The next picture shows the subtle difference between the two:
The next block below is also printed on the exact same paper:
This is the 4 mm Ottawa tagged printing on low fluorescent paper, which is listed in Unitrade as 460fpiv.
The next picture shows the medium fluorescent paper, with 3 mm Ottawa tagging:
The picture above doesn't do the greatest job in showing the true appearance of the paper. However, the next picture, taken from the back, should show it a little more clearly:
Unlike the other low fluorescent flecked paper, the basic fluorescence is low fluorescent bluish. This paper contains low density concentrations of both low and medium fluorescent fibres.
The next paper type is only listed by Unitrade on the precancelled stamps, and it is listed as "fluorescent" - a term I have always found confusing, given the use of the terms low fluorescent, medium fluorescent and high fluorescent. The brightness level is higher than low fluorescent, but not as high as medium fluorescent, so logically, it makes sense that fluorescent paper is mid-way between low fluorescent and medium fluorescent.
The next picture shows both the front and back of a block of the precancelled stamp with 3 mm Ottawa tagging:
You should be able to see the fluorescent fibres in the selvage of this block. This paper has a sparse concentration of low fluorescent fibres, a very sparse concentration of medium fluorescent fibres and a few high fluorescent ones.
Here is the same block as seen from the back:
You can hopefully see the brighter medium and high fluorescent fibres standing out. The overall appearance of the paper is a fluorescent bluish colour, but that is wholly attributable to the fibres. The actual fluorescence outside these fibres is dull fluorescent greyish.
So, there are at least 6 different ribbed paper types.
The smooth papers are listed in Unitrade as existing with four different fluorescence levels:
- Low fluorescent flecked.
- High fluorescent.
- Dull fluorescent.
Hopefully, you can see from the picture that the basic fluorescence of the paper is dull fluorescent greyish, but that there are some bright fluorescent fibres in the paper, that make it appear brighter than it actually is. There are sparse concentrations of both low and medium fluorescent fibres present in this paper.
Another variation of this paper, which is very similar, has a slightly whiter, greyish white appearance under UV, and contains a sparse concentration of low fluorescent fibres, a very concentration of medium and a very sparse concentration of high fluorescent fibres. The picture below shows this paper:
As you can see, it is very similar to the paper shown above, but it is a little more whitish and there are some brighter high fluorescent fibres present in the paper.
- Medium fluorescent with 3 mm Ottawa tagging, and
- Fluorescent, with 3 mm Ottawa tagging.
The ink used on the tagged stamps is also a grey black and shows no significant variation in shade.
Like the untagged stamps, the tagged stamps are all line perf. 11.85.
The gum on these stamps is the same as that found on the untagged stamps: a smooth, white PVA gum with a
This stamp exists both Winnipeg tagged and with two types of general Ottawa tagging, one measuring 4 mm wide, and the other measuring 3 mm wide.
The Winnipeg tagged stamps were tagged with 4 mm bars that ran down the centre of all stamps in the sheet, and are spaced 20 mm apart in the horizontal direction. The bands appear light yellow in normal light, and glow yellowish white under UV, as shown in the following picture:
The picture below shows the appearance of the 4 mm general Ottawa Tagging:
As you can see, the tagging bars are a very bright yellow under UV, that contains a slight tinge of green. The bars are 20 mm apart.
Finally, the next picture shows the 3 mm Ottawa tagging:
In this example, the bars have been shifted to the right so that the right edge of the block has almost no tagging visible at all. The bars glow the same bight yellow as the 4 mm tagging. The spacing between tagging bars this time is 21 mm, rather than 20 mm.
According to Unitrade the precancels exist on three types of horizontal ribbed paper:
- Low fluorescent
- Medium fluorescent
The paper is low fluorescent greyish, with low densities of low and medium fluorescent fibres, and a sparse concentration of high fluorescent fibres. The back picture below shows the fibres clearly on the bottom two stamps:
I have found three varieties of low fluorescent paper, all of which are quite similar, and are shown in the picture below:
- Winnipeg tagged: 2 varieties - so 24 corner blocks.
- Ottawa Tagged 4 mm: 5 varieties - so 60 corner blocks.
- Ottawa Tagged 3 mm: 6 varieties - so 72 corner blocks.
- Precancelled: 6 varieties - so 12 warning strips and 72 corner blocks.
The paper used to print the coil stamps is a vertical wove paper that shows no visible ribbing on either the front, or the back. The printed surface is smooth, under magnification, and the paper is clearly lightly coated. The colour is very white, even when viewed against a stark white background. When held up to a strong back-light, the horizontal mesh pattern of the paper is clearly visible.
Unitrade lists this stamp as being printed exclusively on hibrite paper. Like many of the hibrite listings in Unitrade, there are actually variations in which some stamps are true hibrite, while others are really high fluorescent. The picture below shows both the high fluorescent and hibrite papers:
The true hibrite paper is shown on the left hand pair, while the pair on the right is the high fluorescent paper.
I have not found any variations in the shade of black ink used to print these stamps. The black ink used for the coils is a more intense black than the greyer black found on the sheet stamps.
These stamps were line perforated 10.0, like the other coils printed by the CBN.
I have found three types of dextrose gum on these coil stamps:
- A smooth, cream gum with a semi-gloss sheen.
- A streaky cream gum with a semi-gloss sheen.
- A blotchy, yellowish cream gum with a semi-gloss sheen.
This is the smooth gum. Note the even appearance, without blemishes.
Here is the streaky gum. Note the regular, vertical pattern of blemishes on the gum.
Here is the blotchy gum. Notice how it looks almost as if it was applied with a sponge. The thickness of the gum is not uniform and so the blemishes in the gum are random and neither arranged horizontally or vertically.
Like the other CBN coils, and the 6c orange in particular, this stamp was issued in rolls of 100 stamps, so there are no start, or end strips. There are jump strips that can be collected, though, like the 6c orange, the jumps are not as noticeable as they are on the other issues.
The standard spacing between two stamp impressions vertically, within the roll is 4 to 4.5 mm. Narrow spacing pairs and strips will have spacing that varies from 3 mm to 3.5 mm. Wide spacings will be 5 mm or more, though 5 mm is generally what I have seen for wide spacing pairs and strips.
This concludes my discussion of the CBN printings of the 6c black. In my next post, I will look at the perf. 10 and 12.5 x 12 booklet stamps that were not from the mixed 25c booklets.