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Errors, Freaks and Oddities

By John M. Hotchner

The following essay was originally presented in the Millenium Edition of the Linn's World Stamp Almanac, 6th Edition (2000), by Amos Press. We thank John Hotchner, who has updated it for www.efocc.org, for permission to use it here. He has also provided most of the illustrations used here.



1. Imperforate (Perforations, roulettes or die cutting)
2. Perforations of the wrong gauge applied
3. Inverted perforations
4. Pair of full stamps with the interpane gutter between
5. Pair of full stamps with the intersheet gutter between
6. Stamps misperforated so that the interpane or intersheet gutter is placed within a stamp
7. Perforations intended to separate panes are shifted within a pane, with a full stamp width on either side
8. Perforations fully doubled or tripled
9. Fully missing color or missing tagging
10. Inverted color
11. Error of color (ink)
12. Reversed colors
13. Stamp printed on both sides
14. One or more colors leading to the completion of a stamp is fully offset on the reverse of the stamp by the blanket roller
15. Double prints
16. Inverted overprints and precancels of Bureau of Engraving and Printing
17. Wide-spaced overprints/Bureau precancels
18. Missing overprints/Bureau precancels
19. Se-tenant Bureau precancels
20. Mistakes in the overprint
21. Double overprints or surcharges
22. Full plate number or other self-contained marginal marking within a misperforated stamp or souvenir sheet
23. Full plate number or self-contained marginal marking within a miscut stamp or souvenir sheet
24. Plate number only missing when associated color-design elements are present
25. Stamps unintentionally printed on paper watermarked for another issue or not watermarked at all
26. Stamps printed on the wrong paper
27. Grills fully missing or wholly doubled and tripled
28. Gum missing from a full stamp, or present on the front of a stamp
29. Bureau repair splice creates a mismatched coil strip
29.1. Self-stick stamp images printed on backing paper


30. Single line(s) of perforations misplaced
31. Single direction misperfs affecting all the stamps of a pane or coil, aligned with the design
32. Diagonal misperfs affecting many to all the stamps of a pane
33. Four-way misperfs (boardwalk margins)
34. Two-way misperfs
35. Individual or multiple perfs off line
36. Blind perforations
37. Lines of perforations partially missing
38. Perforations partially doubled
39. Markings from perforating equipment on stamps
40. Paper creases
41. Paper folds
42. Straddle-pane miscuts and gutter snipes
43. Booklet and coil miscuts with marginal markings, including plate numbers
44. Coil miscuts unrelated to marginal markings
45. Booklet miscuts unrelated to marginal markings
46. Souvenir sheet miscuts
47. Double paper/mill splices
48. Double paper/roll-to-roll splices
49. Bureau or other printer repairs and splices
50. Rejection markings
51. Slime holes
52. Non-error grill varieties
53. Unprinted areas in the stamp design
54. Excess ink on stamps
55. Excess ink between stamps
56. Color variations
57. Tagging varieties
58. Printing on reverse
59. Doubled impressions
60. Color misregistrations
61. Overprint and precancel problems
62. Gum varieties


63. Essays, proofs and specimens
64. Plate varieties
65. Design errors
66. Counterfeits, fakes and intentionally created varieties
67. Rotary coil end strips
68. Flat-plate coil paste-ups
69. Private perforations
70. Semi-official separations
71. Bisects
72. Spacing and sheet layout varieties
73. Other experiments
74. Test stamps, coils and booklets
75. Printer's waste
76. Different perforations on stamps of the same design
77. Local precancel varieties
78. Perfin varieties
79. Cancellation and meter varieties
80. Pre-first-day cancels
81. Cinderellas
82. Unissued stamps

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