Lot #131 Canada #454pi 1c Chocolate, Northern Lights and Dogsled Team, 1967-1973 Centennial Issue, A Specialized Lot of 3 WCB Lower Right Corner Blocks on Different DF Papers, With Different Gums, From Different Panes


An interesting group of 3 lower right corner blocks of the 1c Northern Lights and Dogsled team from the 1967-1973 Centennial issue, printed in the chocolate shade, all Winnipeg 1-Bar tagged, and printed on different DF papers with different types of dextrine gum, and from different panes, as follows:

  • DF greyish, right bottom pane, smooth dex gum.
  • DF greyish, right bottom pane pane, streaky dex gum.
  • DF violet, right bottom pane, smooth dex.

Although Unitrade and Harris list both DF and NF-fl papers, in reality there are several variations of DF, NF, NF-fl and DF-fl paper that can be found. Irwin and Freeman list these exhaustively in their book on this issue, and the above papers are just two of these variations.

The position in the print layout of a block can often be determined by examining the relative widths of the selvedge, as well as by carefully examining the continuity of the tag bars. Upper and lower panes will have the tag bars stop just short of the edge of the selvedge, wheras blocks that show the tagging going all the way through the selvedge will be from the top edge of the bottom panes, or the bottom edge of the top pane. Similarly, the blocks from the centre panes will show a discontinuity in the tagging where one set of tagging bars ends and another begins.

The 1c sheet stamps printed by CBN were printed in a number of different shades, depending on when the printings were made:

  • Plate 1 and 2 printings made between 1967 and 1968 tend to be in shades of violet brown or brown.
  • Plate 1 and 2 printings made between 1968 and 1970 tend to be printed in shades of chocolate and reddish chocolate.
  • Plate 3 and 4 printings made between 1970 and 1971 tend to be printed in shades of deep brown, chocolate or reddish chocolate.
  • Plate 5 printings made between 1971 and 1973 tend to be printed in shades of reddish brown, though chocolate shades are also found.

The collage shows the differences between some of these shades, though they are easier to see in the flesh for some reason.

The gum used on all printings to 1971 is dextrine, but within this category, there are a number of different types, which differ by the way the gum appears, when viewed in light:

  • Early printings have yellowish gum that appears either completely smooth, mildly streaky, or very streaky, and has a semi-gloss sheen.
  • Later printings made toward 1970 have gum that has a distinct satin sheen, and can occasionally appear grainy.
  • Plate 3 and 4 printings made between 1970 and 1971 often have a gum that appears mottled and "sponged on". This is a very distinct look that is not seen on the earlier plate 1 and 2 printings. However, the normal smooth and streaky versions of the dextrine gum is also found on these printings as well.

The PVA gum used on the plate 5 printings, shows very little variation, but a subtle difference can be found in the sheen and thickness of the gum, with the earlier printings having a thicker gum with a satin sheen, compared to a slightly thinner gum that has an eggshell sheen.

Unitrade and Harris value these blocks at $7.50. The blocks are all VF, grading between 75 and 84,

The perfs are unlisted and unidentified in these lots, but a combination of any of the following measurements exist for each side: 12, 11.9, 11.95 and 11.85.