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Member postings for Fred Sellars

Here is a list of all the postings Fred Sellars has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Ultra violet radiation of multiple crown Wilding definitives.
11/12/2019 10:08:44

(OBA'S) optical brightening agents, sometimes known as (FWA'S) fluorescent whitening agents should not be confused with bleaching agents, as a bleach creates a chemical reaction to the impurities or discolouration that would have been found in the the rags used and in the water obtained from the river Erme at certain times .

So it was a combination of filtration of the water, bleaches and OBA'S/FWA'S from 1962 onwards that the desired perceived whiteness was accomplished/obtained of the paper used thereafter .

Mutch study has been made in the use of OBA'S/FWA'S in this field and can be found in different formats on the following website :-



Edited By Fred Sellars on 11/12/2019 10:13:58

09/12/2019 13:22:33

This thread should be read in conjunction with the " Ultra violet radiation of multiple crown Wilding definitives " .

Thank you .

Thread: Ultra violet radiation of multiple crown Wilding definitives.
09/12/2019 13:08:18

The insistence for whiter papers by the GPO was instigated in order to enhance the proficiency of the automatic sorting machines used at that time,as prior to the request the stamp papers had not included optical brightening agents during the paper making process as an additional factor, so in order to increase the whiteness of the paper produced it became standard practice to include them in the process at the pulp stage, similar to adding a bio powder, liquid or tablet to a domestic washing machine in order to get that "whiter than white" aspect due to the optical brightening agents presence contained in them .

It is stated by some authorities that the water taken from the river Erme was discoloured , I do not doubt that in some instances this was the case and it needed to be filtered to give a whiter paper, but clean water alone does not give that "whiter than white" effect (the perceived whiteness) .

I believe that OBA'S in conjunction with cleaner water was used to accomplish the desired whiteness, therefore the transition period with the use of OBA'S from cream to white paper was made in 1962, as prior to this there are no GB stamps printed on fluorescent paper other than the chalk surface ones that give a similar reaction, it is only stamps printed after this time that contain adequate amounts of OBA's to give them the fluorescence found with a classification of "whiter paper" as seen under long wave ultraviolet light .


Thread: Meet the "FIB'S"
06/12/2019 16:17:55

It would appear that the fibrillous papers were actually observed as far back as 1979, as they are mentioned in a statement by Aubrey Walker ( a post office chemist ) in an article in the November Philatelic Bulletin of that year as accidental fluorescent flecks or fibres randomly distributed used during the Wilding series .

They have never been recognised as different by the philatelic fraternity . If something is different (flecks), then it is a variety, whether it be in the printing,watermark or in this case the type of paper .

Although Mr Chris Harman of the the RPSL did comment,that these "varieties" had been seen before , when I sent him a scan depicting them last year .

So why is there no reference to them in any of the catalogues if they were classified as accidental ?

Edited By Fred Sellars on 06/12/2019 16:20:10

05/12/2019 21:42:09

img_20191202_002828.jpgVariations in stamp papers is not just exclusive to Great Britain, many countries throughout the world have had their share relating to varieties in the past, this has come about either by the way they are produced or have been developed over the years and can be made with many a different combination of materials that was available locally at the time . Countries ranging from India ,Russia, Canada, Australia and others too numerous to mention .

I was recently having a look at some Austrian stamps and discovered that some papers are similar to the ones found in the UK, here are two examples, the first being of the costumes definitives and the second one covers some of the building definitives of 1958 the like of which will make a fascinating study for someone so inclined .

I realise this topic is based on GB collecting, but I thought a mention would not be amiss, after all 99.999% of stamps are printed on some form of paper, a common denominator .


Thread: Ultra violet radiation of multiple crown Wilding definitives.
05/12/2019 16:58:01

img_20191205_114240.jpgBy the use of an ultraviolet light on stamps I stated in my posting of 31/10/19 that not only can you detect the different papers and coloured phosphors used but also different shades of ink can also be established . In my thread CREAM Vs WHITE on the 11th of November I made you aware of the variances of the 2d chocolate brown when it was originally rejected by the GPO in 1963 .

I can now show you an example as seen in these two scans along with this text, the first scan is of cream and white(r) papers in the visible spectrum ( very little difference can be noticed in the colour ) , but with the same stamps as shown in the second scan taken under ultraviolet light , a stark difference can be seen due to the fact that a different shade of ink has been used .

The ultraviolet lamp is a very powerful tool in philately and can detect things that would otherwise have been overlooked, the police also use similar tactics in detecting for crime .


03/12/2019 13:37:04

Following a visit by Dr John Sugden to Harrison and sons at High Wycombe, a report was made with reference to the cream and white(r) paper printings of the multiple crown Wilding definitives in the Woodstock column no. 54 published in Stamp Collecting in December of 1969 .

He came to the conclusion it was only clean water that produced the white(r) paper for these stamps and was quite adamant that the artificial whiteners was purely used to stop the paper from yellowing, he also stated that on certain occasions white(r) paper had been produced when the river was in flood, on this point I strongly disagree with his findings as normally a river runs clear most of the time and only becomes murky or discoloured in times of flood . Therefore, white(r) paper would have been produced the majority of the time prior to 1962 and not cream ones as normally found .

Another thing he mentioned, was the presence or absence of ultraviolet fluorescence being attributed purely to the detergents in the rags used, I state that the white(r) paper was created by the use of bleaching agents(OBA'S) and that is the reason why an effluent plant had to be installed at the mill due to the additional use of these artificial whiteners from 1962 onwards .

I have never found any papers prior to 1962 that normally fluoresce except for the odd chalk surfaced stamps as the rags used were similar to the ones used post 1962 .

Thread: How times have changed !
30/11/2019 20:49:21

One of my loathed GB stamps are the self adhesive ones with the ornamental perforations that are already separated in the first place,first issued in 1993 .

The problem is with this type of used stamp is that once removed from the paper (envelope) the back of the stamp is still self adhesive and needs treating with talcum powder or some other type of preventative coating to nullify the sellotape effect, if you don't treat them once removed they will stick to something else or pick up small particles etc which needs to be avoided .

Many collectors keep them as received and just cut round them to prevent all the hassle involved .

As far as I am concerned they are definitely a no no 👎 .

Thread: GVI defin differences
30/11/2019 10:20:24

Good morning Chazz,

Since yesterday I have looked at these stamps and have found one particular stamp of interest, it's not just the thistles but several other variations of note .

The variations are only minor but there are three on one particular stamp, they are as follows marked with a red arrow and a number :-

1) There is a small extension line within the circle under the cross of the crown

2) The line is broken leaving a single dot in its place

3) 2 small dots above the e of postage ( one very small and the other is larger )

Plus there is also the difference in the thistle head found by yourself

I could not find a repetition of the above on any of the other stamps coming to the conclusion that this may be variety not previously noticed before, it's position in the sheet would be R11/8 .

As this was a single purchase recently made I cannot confirm, but other collectors may be able to help to resolve my findings .



Edited By Fred Sellars on 30/11/2019 10:24:44

29/11/2019 12:46:15

Look no further Chazz, as after further inspection of the dot on the crown, I have found that under the magnifying glass it does not exist, this anomaly may have occurred when the picture sharpness adjustment was made 🧐🤭

The wicked can now rest, however,I am in agreement with your other comment that the Thistles do need a mention in the 🐈 .

TTFN regards,Fred.

28/11/2019 22:35:27

img_20191128_212144.jpgimg_20191128_211858.jpgGood evening Chazz,

Being of a curious nature, I decided to purchase 20 of the cheaper version of the 4d value as a strip of 10x2 from the right centre to the bottom of the sheet and took three separate scans of the top 18 .

As unmounted mint there is no disputing postmark interference or staining, and as you stated there appears to be a multitude of slight variations to the Thistle head as can be seen .

I previously stated that due to the many variations in evidence,the catalogue was unable to identify which was the variety, and therefore never listed them ( a case of too many cooks spoiling the broth ( 57 varieties)) .

For anyone purchasing the specialised catalogue I do feel that some kind of reference should be made in the future to clarify this and also the other values that you found .

PS another little feature I have just noticed in the scan below is the middle left stamp, the last dot over the crown appears to be hollow .


Edited By Fred Sellars on 28/11/2019 23:00:06

Thread: Ultra violet radiation of multiple crown Wilding definitives.
26/11/2019 16:25:34

Further reading that may be of interest can be found at :-

26/11/2019 11:06:22

In order to add meat to the bone, I decided to look at earlier stamps printed on a cream paper so as to compare differences found between them and the violet phosphors issued in 1966 .

In this instance, I chose a booklet pane from the George VI issue of the 1d colour change issue of 1950, as these stamps was printed on a cream paper .

It can be seen that the 10d phosphors on the left compare favourably with the 1d values, but the ones on the right are on a white(r) paper, both types of stamps on the left are VOID of optical brightening agents as against the ones on the right .

Judge for yourself !



Thread: Ultra violet radiation of multiple crown Wilding definitives.
24/11/2019 15:59:57

Both infrared and ultraviolet are the nearest wavelengths either side of the visible spectrum and are both used to determine the properties of matter from their electromagnetic interactions with the object in question .

In this instance I have used long wave ultraviolet light to determine the presence or absence of optical brightening agents in stamp papers, the method used is classified as spectral analysis in both chemistry and physics .

24/11/2019 13:39:51

Good afternoon viewers,

All of the stamps exhibited in this thread are based on my benchmark, contrary to other benchmarks used in the past relating to the date of issue used by other philatelic authorities ( that GB Wilding stamps issued post 1962 are only printed on a white(r) paper ) .

In order to clarify my findings, my benchmark is as follows :-

If a stamp's paper does not fluoresce under a long wave ultraviolet light it cannot be classified as a white(r) paper, due to the fact that a white(r) paper is manufactured by including optical brightening agents in its production when in the pulp stage directly as an additive, so as to give it a whiter appearance from the cream papers previously produced .

If the paper does not react to the ultraviolet test it cannot be classified as a white(r) paper, due to the fact it is void of optical brightening agents, therefore it is a cream paper whether by error or design .

When a white(r) paper is produced,bleaching agents (OBA'S) are added to the mixture along with the rags and China clay give it the whiteness, otherwise, it would be a cream paper and consequently when a long wave spectrum of light is administered to the surface of the paper it is ionised and reflects a fluorescent or glowing effect, should the paper not contain optical brightening agents it will not react and therefore cannot be classified as white(r) paper, therefore it is a cream paper by definition and spectral analysis, irrespective of the the GSM (the thickness of the paper) .

My benchmark is based on facts and not supposition, thank you .


Thread: GVI defin differences
20/11/2019 21:59:57

I'm certainly in agreement with you there Chazz !

Keep up the good work, regards, Fred

20/11/2019 21:40:35

So what you are saying is that there are differences to the Thistle head of these values in varying degrees throughout the sheet .

It could be that there are so many variations it is difficult to pinpoint which is the variety and consequently has never been listed as such .

It would be interesting to get some information from a specialist,someone who has studied these particular stamps at first hand to help clarify the situation.

Hoping you get some response from someone in the know !

Regards, Fred.

20/11/2019 20:08:55

Good evening Chazz,

You state "I think there are probably various degrees of this"

Various degrees of what ?.... Please clarify .

Also which one do you consider to be the variety in your opinion ?


20/11/2019 16:15:08

Good afternoon Chazz,

I too to have an ancient copy of the SG specialised catalogue like you and cannot find any documentation relating to the differences discovered by you on the thistles that you have found .

It's quite possible that this variety is only once per sheet or it maybe otherwise, as a re-cut plate, in which case they only come from a specific printing, I think the former is most likely due to the time span of the issues .

Nevertheless, I think this is a brilliant find, congratulations 🏆 !

19/11/2019 09:10:06

img_20191026_140513.jpgGood morning Chazz,

From your new scan with overlaps it is now easier to compare any differences .

Not only does there seem to be a difference in the upper section of the thistles but also the background of the profile has a different shading when comparing like-for-like .

It's quite possible that you may have found something that has been overlooked in the past, similar to my findings with regards to the multiple crown Wilding papers .


Edited By Fred Sellars on 19/11/2019 09:11:42

Edited By Fred Sellars on 19/11/2019 09:21:27

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