Sunday, March 21, 2010

Singapore Postage Stamps Catalogue

For those that need a reference to a stamp catalogue that has details about Singapore stamps, I strongly recommend the Singapore Postage Stamps Catalogue that is published by CS Philatelic Agency. It is the only catalogue that I know about that deals solely with Singapore stamps.

The 2nd edition catalogue contains information about the Straits Settlements, Japanese Occupation, BMA and Issues till 2007. I am not sure whether the 3rd or 4th edition has been published. It retails for S$20 or US$24.

Good things about the Catalogue

The catalogue is very detailed and provides pictures of a comprehensive list of all Singapore stamps and even before Singapore gained its independence. It publishes the price of the various stamps and from it, you can find out lots of information like the number of stamps printed, the date of issue, number of stamps in a set, etc.

Bad Things about the Catalogue

The only misgivings I have about the catalogue is the haphazard arrangement of advertisements at both the front and back of the catalogue. Usually, advertisements should be kept to the back of the catalogue as I have to flip through various pages before I get to the front page of the catalogue.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Ruined Stamps by Poor Soaking Method

I ruined some stamps because I did not soak them properly.

The mistake I made was to use cool water instead of lukewarm water. Was too lazy and figured that cool water would work just as well. I waited and waited and realised that the stamps did not come off even after half and hour.

By then, a lot of the paper was starting to disintegrate and the stamps were still stuck to them!

What followed was me trying to use my fingers to "rub" away the paper that was still stuck to the back of the stamps. Some stamps were spoilt as they got torn as I was trying to do that.

Oh well. Guessed I learnt from my mistake. ALWAYS USE LUKEWARM OR WARM WATER TO SOAK STAMPS. Remember that my friends!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

3 Reasons to Invest in Singapore Stamps

I have been thinking about how profitable it is to invest in Singapore stamps.

Here are a few reasons why I think collecting Singapore stamps might be a worthwhile investment. (Do note however that this posting does not constitute any recommendation to the reader to buy Singapore stamps for the sake of investment purposes.)

Reason #1 - Singapore's Small Population

Singapore has a really small population of around 5 million. The small population means that there is an equally small amount of stamp collectors around. In fact, speak to any Singaporean below the age of 30 and you will find that most of them do not collect stamps at all.

Because of this, you can expect that the number of mint stamps that are being collected are actually very little compared to other countries which have a larger population.

Reason #2 - Singapore's GDP growth

When a country grows, its people become more affluent and are able to afford high prices for worthy collections. While there is no trend that affluent Singaporeans are turning to stamp collecting as a hobby, there is still a likelihood that this could be the case in the future.

When a country's population is rich, they will be more willing to pay a good price for rare items like error stamps and the like.

Reason #3 - The number of Stamps Being issued

Due to the lack of demand, the number of stamps that are being issued are very little. Singapore Post however issues stamps quite frequently and this results in poor collectors (like me) being unable to afford purchasing every single stamp that is being issued. With the high frequency of stamps being issued and the low number of stamps that are printed, you can safely expect that there will be less and less stamps that are being collected by the general public.

Invest in Singapore Stamps

Singapore stamps are perhaps a good investment. With a small stamp collecting population, rising GDP and the small number of stamps being issued, mint stamps from Singapore will probably be very hard to find 50 or 60 years down the road.

Monday, March 1, 2010

How To Soak Stamps

Very often, we get stamps that we would like to collect. However, these stamps might be fixed on envelopes.

Below is the method that I use for soaking my stamps:

1. Prepare a tub or basin of lukewarm water.

2. Separate your stamps into the "whites" and "colored" based on the evelopes they are stuck on.

3. Soak the "whites" first. The stamps should be facing up when you soak them so that the heavier part (the envelope) will peel off nicely.

4. Try to separate the stamps such that they do not stick to one another.

5. Leave for 5 to 10 minutes and remove.

6. Lay them out on a piece of paper to dry facing up. Make sure that there is no gum remnants on the back otherwise the stamps will stick to the paper.


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