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THE UNAUTHORIZED REPRINTS OF THE UNION ISLAND 1985 LEADERS OF THE WORLD AUDUBON BIRDS STAMP ISSUES

Like father.....like son....

I have discovered that there is a reprinted version of the 1985 Birds issue that is very different from the original versions. Before showing these I wish to assure all who read this that the reprinting was done under legal grounds. After some read this they may start calling them fakes or forgeries. In essence they are simply unauthorized reprints made by a stamp dealer named Clive Feigenbaum. I can tell you that real dangerous forgeries are being flooded on the market as I rewrite this page in November of 2016. Please visit the "Modern Fake Stamps" section to learn how to define them.

According to the reprint agreement started in 1987 the artwork and all other materials including the Format Printers Company Logo were still held under the legal ownership of Clive Feigenbaum who had the reprinting done. The reprint agreement gave sole right to the owners of said materials to reprint at their descretion even under a different companies name. Even though the reprinting was done long after the Format Printers closed their doors the Company Logo found on the panes of the reprints was legally applied.
The ownership extended beyond the time of the Format Printers existence. Is it ethical or moral to do such a thing? Absolutely not!

The reasons why the unauthorized reprinting was done at a later date is a mystery. One rumor has it that it was out of revenge for the originals being suspiciously sold outside the liquidating procedures at the time of the liquidation of the Format Security Printers. There was certain animosities between the owner, Mr. Clive Feigenbaum, and certain stamp dealers associated with Philatelists Ltd.. It is only rumor and we will leave it at that. It is interesting though as the stamps at the time really did not have a huge selling record and plenty were already available. Thus....why reprint them? Of course birds on stamps is a popular thematic and possibly they were reprinted for the purpose of future sales of thematics.

Unlike the Saint vincent Elvis and Michael Jackson unauthorized secondary reprints at this time there is no evidence that these unauthorized reprints are "secondary". They were reprinted after Format closed the doors but at present there is no evidence that the Format Printers ever reprinted the set. Therefore, very few original proofs, progressive color proof sets, etc; exist. The majority come from this unauthorized reprinting.

So to finish the story for this set the original plates were used and thus they are very difficult to define at first glance except for one thing! The perforations differ and many other factors are different as you will see.

TO THE SELLERS

I present this page so all stamp collectors and sellers will know what to look for accordingly and will price and describe the reprints accordingly. I do not have information on the quantities produced but do know that it is at least as large as the originals due to percentages offered on the market. Most of the errors, progressives color proofs and proofs themselves are from the reprinting. Without full comparison to the following defined descriptions, you as sellers should take the responsibility of describing these unauthorized reprints with accurate descriptions and stop selling them with vague and/or no description. You need to describe the issues as either the originals or the unauthorized reprints. If you do not, and you are selling them, it is unethical and unfair to collectors and dealers in stamps as a whole.
Members of the APS, PTS etc. could find their reputations tarnished should it be found that you are selling under suspicious behavior and breaking Codes of Ethics in the trade by not describing these unauthorized reprints properly simply because of your lack of knowledge or because of greed.

TO ALL AUCTION SITES

Please, police these issues and the sellers who are not describing these correctly need to be stopped. If they do not describe them accurately, they need to have their lots removed from sale until corrections are made. They are easy to define as you will see below just by the images. If the seller uses blurry or very small images they should not be trusted and should be warned. It will take time for the problem to be corrected but it can be done as long as the collecting community works together as a whole. This problem spans over almost thirty years now! Don't you think it is time to stop the problem?

TO THE BUYERS

Please be aware before purchasing this issue. If you purchase it, be sure to compare them as soon as you receive them to be sure the seller did not fool you with an image of the originals and then sends you the unauthorized reprints. This has happened to many collectors because some dealers are just plain out to rip you off! Request a refund and return them. If the seller continually does this then they need to be reported and exposed. I am sorry to say, but because of the immoral actions of one person, it is up to you as a buyer to make sure you don't get ripped off! Apparently most dealers, leaders of stamp societies, auction sites and so called "experts" want to ignore the problems caused by this individual and so now over 50% of this issue offered on the market are either unauthorized reprints or forgeries of bad quality printing in all regards.

TO THE STAMP CATALOG MAKERS

You need to define these in your notations about their existence. At present you do not even note they exist thus your catalogs do not help the collecting community to figure out what they are nor how to define the differences. Stanley Gibbons notes the unauthorized reprints for the St. Vincent Michael Jackson and Elvis Presley issues but does not note it for this issue and other issues I have discovered.
Scott catalog does not even note them at all! Probably because most of the unauthorized reprints were sold to American stamp dealers. I guess they are trying to save face or something by not noting their existence, possibly because of influence by these same dealers who wish to continue to rip off collectors like you and me.

I must state at this point, that on the quantities of this reprinting the standard would probably be the same as on the Leaders of the World Automobiles and Locomotives series. Basing on the Format Printers practices at the time for reprints.
1.) The reprinting would be 21,000 sets perforated.
2.) 5,000 sets of imperforate proofs.
3.) 2,000 sets perforated with specimen overprint.
4.) 1,000 sets imperforate with specimen overprint
5.) 3,000 sets of Progressive Color Proofs.
6.) A possibility of made for collector errors as in missing colors or misperfs, of which standard practices would produce 3,000 of a given value or values.

It is probable that the same standard of quantity production has been followed with the reprinting after the Format Printers closed their doors forever for this issue.

LET'S GET STARTED!

ALL THE FOLLOWING IMAGES WERE SCANNED AT 600dpi AND RESIZED IN EXACTLY THE SAME WAY WITH NO COLOR ALTERATIONS.
Unauthorized Reprint Set of Saint Vincent Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds
Scott Catalog Number 186-189
The Unauthorized Reprint Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds Stamp Set
Marquee for Golowe's Reference Site on the Format International Security Printers

How to Identify the Unauthorized Reprinted Union Island 1985 Birds Stamps

This guide was written with the purpose of:
(i) Helping buyers to identify the unauthorized reprint stamps which have been on the market for over 25 years now;
(ii) Protecting the interests of genuine dealers everywhere who don't sell fakes or forgeries or reprints without defining them as such;
(iii) Protecting the integrity and interests of the Saint Vincent Philatelic Bureau.

It is unknown at this time when these unauthorized reprint stamps first appeared. We can presume that because they have a similarity to the unauthorized reprints for Saint Vincent Michael Jackson and Elvis Presley stamp sets that they probably came onto the market in the same timeframe. Clive Feigenbaum had access to the original artwork transparencies and printing plates separations and for this set the original plates so the unauthorized reprints are of fair quality. The stamps are more than capable of not being detected by most dealers, stamp collectors, and Bird topical collectors. There are however, a number of distinguishing features on the unauthorized reprints (that are illustrated below), which make them easy to identify from the original stamps.

By the way, the stamps illustrated above are all unauthorized reprints!

Also these are found as imperforate proofs, progressive color proofs and in some cases as "errors" with misperfs etc;. No inverts were ever made by the Format Printers nor by Clive Feigenbaum for this issue.

These unauthorized reprints should not be valued by anyone! They were created by a stamp dealer intent on ripping you off!
This newly discovered unauthorized reprinting will now cause the original stamp sets to become more valuable as demand for them will rise.
I would value the unauthorized reprints at nothing. This is true "wallpaper". At the time of this webpage creation approximately 50% of sales on the market contain the reprints. Others may try to disagree, but as time will tell it will be according to what the market decides....not the sellers nor "experts" as obviously there are none or this would have been known long ago.
I guess you could say....I am the expert on these now.

(1) Scott 186 15c Se-Tenant Stamp Pair
Hooded Warbler and Carolina Wren (Great Carolina Wren)

The Unauthorized Reprint Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds Scott 186 Pair with Original Pair for Comparison
When compared side-by-side with the original stamps, the unauthorized reprint stamps look very good and use a richer set of colours allowing for more contrast in the photographs. However, don't let the colours fool you!

The Unauthorized Reprint Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds Perforation Comparison
Rule Number One (and probably the only rule needed unless comparing proofs) when identifying the unauthorized reprints is to COUNT THE PERFORATIONS! As most of these stamps are sold in se-tenant (joined) pairs, count the number of holes along the vertical join. For the original stamps, there are 24 Holes (i.e. 25 Perforations), whereas the unauthorized reprints have 27 Holes (i.e. 28 perforations). The holes in the unauthorized reprints are thus noticeably smaller, and there is a tendency for all holes to not be completely punched out.

The Unauthorized Reprint Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds Scott 186 Printing Comparison
In addition to the perforations being different, the unauthorized reprint stamps have a honeycomb pattern throughout the image and the details are blurred (see above); while the originals do not have a pattern and are much more detailed.
Also the gum is shiny on the originals and dull on the unauthorized reprints. The original stamps are heavier and thicker than the unauthorized reprints.

These unauthorized reprints are much better quality than the Elvis and Michael unauthorized reprints as the images and everything are in proper proportions. Because of this they are harder to detect without looking very closely at them. If one does not have a set of originals to compare they can easily slip by.

Some other subtle differences to look out for are:
1.) Weaker / lighter Font for all inscriptions on the unauthorized reprints;
2.) The white background has a light bluish hue on the unauthorized reprints versus very white on the originals;
3.) The brown color between the bars where the country name and denomination are. On the unauthorized reprints it is pinkish salmon whereas brown on originals;
4.) The yellow on the upper and lower bars is deep yellow on the originals versus very pale yellow on the unauthorized reprints;
The Unauthorized Reprint Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds Scott 186 Color Comparison

(2) Scott 187 50c Se-Tenant Stamp Pair
Song Sparrow and Black-headed Grosbeak (Spotted Grosbeak)

The Unauthorized Reprint Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds Scott 187 Pair with Original Pair for Comparison
Again use RULE #1 (Count the Perforations) as above. Again, the unauthorized reprints have 27 holes compared to the original pair's 24 holes.

The Unauthorized Reprint Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds Scott 187 Printing Comparison
Again in addition to the perforations being different, the unauthorized reprint stamps have a honeycomb pattern throughout the image and the details are blurred (see above); while the originals do not have a pattern and are much more detailed. Other similar features as noted above are also on this value.
The framing colors are lighter lavender and salmon on the unauthorized reprints versus much deeper colors on the originals.

The Unauthorized Reprint Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds Scott 187 Color Comparison

(3) Scott 188 $1.00 Se-Tenant Stamp Pair
Scarlet Tanager (Black-winged Red-bird) and Lazuli Bunting (Lazuli Finch)

The Unauthorized Reprint Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds Scott 188 Pair with Original Pair for Comparison
Again, the unauthorized reprint stamps are instantly recognizable by the number of perforations (27 Holes instead of 24) and demonstrate the same features of printing as the closeup shows.
Noting on this value that the original frame colors are a much darker greenish colors than on the unauthorized reprint.
Also noting the Lazuli Finch is blue on the originals and lavender on the unauthorized reprints.
The Unauthorized Reprint Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds Scott 188 Printing Comparison
The Unauthorized Reprint Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds Scott 188 Color Comparison

(4) Scott 189 $1.50 Se-Tenant Stamp Pair
Sharp-shinned Hawk and Merlin (Le Petit Caporal)

The Unauthorized Reprint Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds Scott 189 Pair with Original Pair for Comparison
Here again on the $1.50 values we have similar differences. The Unauthorized Reprint Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds Scott 189 Printing Comparison
The Unauthorized Reprint Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds Scott 189 Color Comparison
This sums up the demonstration on how to identify the unauthorized reprints of the Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds stamps. As you can see, you do not have to be an expert philatelist to be able to do this. You do not even have to be a collector at all! The differences between the original stamps and the unauthorized reprints is quite obvious.

I hope that this reference page on the Union Island 1985 Audubon Birds unauthorized reprints will assist all collectors, dealers and memorabilia collectors in defining and chosing which sets they have or are buying.

Please refer this page to all of your stamp collecting friends and acquaintances to help get the word out.

Here are links to all the other LOTW issues that were discovered to have been reprinted without authorization in the early 1990's after the Format International Security Printers went Bankrupt.

LEADERS OF THE WORLD UNAUTHORIZED REPRINTS PRODUCED AFTER FORMAT BANKRUPTSY
THE MONTSERRAT 1985 AUDUBON BIRDS UNAUTHORIZED REPRINT STAMPS
THE NEVIS 1985 AUDUBON BIRDS UNAUTHORIZED REPRINT STAMPS
THE SAINT VINCENT 1985 ELVIS PRESLEY UNAUTHORIZED REPRINT STAMPS
THE SAINT VINCENT 1986 KING ARTHUR CAMELOT UNAUTHORIZED REPRINT STAMPS
THE SAINT VINCENT 1985 MICHAEL JACKSON UNAUTHORIZED REPRINT STAMPS
THE SAINT VINCENT BEQUIA 1985 DOGS UNAUTHORIZED REPRINT STAMPS
THE SAINT VINCENT UNION ISLAND 1985 BUTTERFLIES UNAUTHORIZED REPRINT STAMPS
THE TUVALU 1985 AUDUBON BIRDS UNAUTHORIZED REPRINT STAMPS
THE TUVALU NANUMEA 1985 CATS UNAUTHORIZED REPRINT STAMPS
THE TUVALU NIUTAO 1985 AUDUBON BIRDS UNAUTHORIZED REPRINT STAMPS
THE TUVALU NUKULAELAE 1985 DOGS UNAUTHORIZED REPRINT STAMPS

Your friend and fellow collector and researcher,
JLowe RETURN TO TOPRETURN TO TOP

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UPDATED LAST ON: 25-Nov-2016 05:39 PM