Tuesday 26 March 2019

New Tariff FDC coil stamps not as different as last year

Royal Mail's standing order first day covers have stamps affixed from coils rather than sheets: these coil stamps are not available to collectors except on the FDCs.  Regular readers will recall that in 2018 the coil stamps (allegedly printed by ISP/Walsall as were the sheet stamps) were quite different in having much larger gaps in the U-shaped cuts.  (See here.)

This wide gap isn't present on the 2019 tariff stamps, but they are still different.  I don't know whether it is because of a different direction of print (coils are nearly always printed from right to left or vice versa) or slightly more/less ink, but to the naked eye they just look different.  (FDC stamps above sheet stamps here).

And close examination shows that the shading is different in many places (sheet above FDC). As always, click on the images for larger versions.  Note also the face value is 'softer' on the sheet-printed stamps.

I'll only show two 'heads' but you'll get the idea; the colours are slightly variable (£2.30 and £1.60 especially) when seen in close-up - click on to see the each stamp on its own.)


So, are they different?  Well not different enough for basic catalogues, and not for intermediate-level specialism.  But if you want the stamps on the FDC, then please let me know by email to ian@norphil.co.uk.  They will cost £20 due to the high face value, plus postage and I can add them in to any other order, or they can wait for more stamps that you want.


  1. It's a great shame they are not made available to collectors as mint stamps - I would certainly buy them as a clearly different visible variation.

  2. Don’t the stamps in the presentation packs (and single sets?) come from coil printings as well?

    1. Some have in the past, but you don't know until you get them.

      I don't think any of last year's FDC stamps were distributed as singles sets or in PPs.


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