Friday, May 28, 2010

50 years First Issue of EUROPA issue:

General warning about this issue to all collectors.

This issue come out to the public on 3. Jan. 2006, Scott catalog I don't have, but Michel have it with number 108-111 I (for set) and Block 2A, B, and Block 3 (that are different by design, from main set). Michel price it at 11.00 euro for simple set, and 12.00 euro for strip set, strip+tab will have price of 15.0 euro. Block go for 2A perforated 20.00 euro, without perforation -,-.

Here come problem!

First, every perforated block (of 4 stamp, face valued 5.50 euro) - have an number on salvage, right side on middle, without perforation are without this serial number. According Michel, block are printed in 505 000 quantity (I have one sample with 504 544 number), but block without perforation don't have any information about quantity printed.

Recently, I participated in one public auction, where I saw that one of this block are offered for sale but with great name - shifted perforation - God, I jumped to obtain it and pay almost 30.00 euro to win it! Yes - I have it in my possession in the end, but what surprise! When I examined it, and not examination like professional certification, but simple exam, it come one bad feeling - it is absolutely fake perforation!

I don't need to be expert about Montenegro issue, and today we have just great accessories on PC and web, that we even don't need to ask expert about opinion, I simply see that it is manipulation, fake for naive intention. This block is not worth so much at all, it is just 20.00 euro catalog, on market You will find it even on exchange basis - what was need to made this effort and to made "shifted perforation" case on it? Money? Noooooo!

How I can say that it is fake/manipulated perforation? See, I use simple Picasa (from Google) system on my PC - zoomed this block, and what I see? I see, horizontal, middle perforation are "deformed", almost like egg by profile, because I'm (by way) printing plant technician, I know, that perforation, if used once, can not have this "profile" - it must be round, and not ellipse, that mean - someone didn't have proper perf machine in use, that say - it is done or in private workshop, or in "hurry" inside printing plant. Second come to my attention, that on around hole are visible color traces, something like oil spill or oil traces, but when I used Picasa zoom I see that it is actually color marking for reason to know where exactly to apply perf machine! God - this guy who made it - he was even amateur in this job!

In the end I contacted person in Post of Montenegro, who is responsible for contact with collectors, and asked him about his opinion, what I received like answer, just give "stamp of approval" for my theory that it is fake! Here is (in free translation) what I hear:

This issue are problematic from beginning of life. First and main mistake was made in choosing printing plant and contractor for this job to print stamp, distribute and sell it. We give contract to local printing plant in Sarajevo, that didn't keep with timing, didn't keep contract condition, and most problematic, didn't have any security inside printing plant! That resulted in great missuses of finished product, of printing vasts, of quantity. People from there simply walk out with whole printing sheet in hand!

Most problematic are, that whole quantity are sold to one person (I didn't have info to whom), and now, no one know nothing sure about this set.

Because I come from Yugoslavia, and know mentality of this peoples living there, hardly that it come like result of uneducated people, but mostly (I think), it is because of some kind of dispute between printing plant and Post of Montenegro. Probably Post didn't pay for work done, and printing plant decided to sell all quantity to someone who have money for it, in this case - no security can stop worker to take some "sample" home, like payment, souvenir or just to make little money.

I wish to collectors be informed about this "rarity" - because topic are attractive to collectors of EUROPA issue, and because it is one nice issue, but no one need to care and spend extra money for variety or rarity that actually don't have any legality or extra value!