A Guide to Stamp Collecting Supplies

Stamp collection is a hobby, which is popular throughout the world. There is an estimated 20 million stamp collectors, in the United States alone. It has continued for as a long tradition and will continue to exist.

Why the stamp collection is so popular? It is a hobby, which does not need any expensive tools or equipments. However, there are some basic tools that a collector must have for collecting and preserve the stamp in good condition. These tools are usually inexpensive and can be purchased easily from the local stores. Here are some of the supplies for stamp collecting:

Albums

The albums are very significant in the complete stamp-collecting hobby because, it secure the stamps, it allows the collector to organize his collection and at the same time it helps to display them in an attention-grabbing way.

One must be able to know what kind of albums to be used for keeping his stamp collection. A good stamp album would have thick pages, which can withstand a lot of handling and stress. It is also have sufficient space for accommodating the stamps. The binding of the album must be sturdy and strong to hold the pages more effectively. Last, but not the least, the pages must be acid-free.

Mounts and Hinges

The small rectangular piece of gum-coated paper or glassine is called as stamp hinges. They are used to attach the stamps to the pages of the stamp album. They work like ordinary door or cabinet hinges. These hinges do not cost very much. In fact, one can purchase thousands of them by spending few dollars.

Another tool is the stamp mount, which can be used to attach the stamp into the stamp album pages. Stamp mounts do not damage the gum of the stamp. Mounts have sleeves, where the stamps can be inserted, which eliminate the need to attach the stamp to a gum-coated hinge. These mounts are costing more than the stamp hinges and usually used to hold more expensive or special kinds of stamps.

Tongs

These are comparable to ordinary tweezers. These tongs are usually made of plastic or stainless steel and used for handling the stamp to prevent damages. Using tongs for expensive stamps is must because a simple touch can destroy or decrease the value of a stamp.

Magnifying glass

In collecting stamps, one of the greatest thrills is examining the items. A magnifying glass is required to assess the stamp at hand, effectively. This will allow a collector to mark certain tears, damages, or errors on stamps.

Envelopes

The thin translucent envelopes made of glassine, come in different sizes and used for storing and sorting the stamps before placing in the album. These can also be useful in mailing the stamps to other people.

Watermark Detector

This will allow a collector to see the embossed pattern that was printed on the stamp, which indicates the time when the stamp was made. However, all stamps are not embossed with watermarks.

Catalogues

These are good for references, by which one will be able to assess the value of his stamps. Usually, these catalogues give some useful information or interesting facts about certain stamps, which they feature.

The world of stamp collecting is an exciting and wonderful one. Stamps tell the story of the world and its history. By having the proper stamp collecting supplies one can make the whole experience of stamp collecting more intense and fun.


 

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Stamp Collecting Basics