The George V prestige stamp book predictably contains a Machin pane which, predictably brought us some new stamps. This is a scan of the actual pane, containing 2nd & 1st class stamps, and a 50p, the first self-adhesive PSB pane with small Machin definitives.
It was no suprise, then, that the same features exist in this PSB pane - after all, Royal Mail standard PSB FDCs always use the definitive pane, and they couldn't have their machinery gummed up with stamps which should be on the covers.
The first panes we received had a single hanger in the perforation hole immediately above the elliptical (long) perforation hole. These panes also had the security slits in two types - at the bottom the divided 'paperclip' and at the top, a continuous paper clip.
The panes in the books - and later loose panes - are completely different. Both 'paperclips' are divided, but more significant are the three additional hangers (see type B to the right of the illustration). An additional hanger is in the 5th hole from the top on the long sides of the stamp, and two more are on both the short sides, five holes in from either corner, making 8 hangers in all. These differences apply to all three stamps, so if you are a specialist collector for this sort of detail there are 6 new stamps, not 3.
So - a deliberate change because either the printer had problems preparing the books or Royal Mail had problems with the handling & FDCs for this pane, or just a minor variation. Or is it, perhaps, something that Royal Mail's production department have introduced to make Machin collectors even more interested, something to get you keenly examining every copy of every new stamp to find out whether there are unannounced differences ?
I'd be interested in any further variations to this pane either in the hangers or the paperclips.
Now on Sale
We have a limited supply of these and other stamps with security features now listed on our e-commerce site.
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