Buying a watermark detector

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McBarry
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Buying a watermark detector

Post by McBarry »

Hello,

I am interesting in buying a new watermark detector and i have two choises.
I am collecting german stamps and i would like the watermark detector to indentify all german watermarks.

1st. Detectamark Watermark Detector by Stanley Gibbons at 99.95 Pounds
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2nd. Safe Signoscope T2 at 102 Pounds.

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What do you think in the best choise?
And why.

Thanks in advance.
I am looking for the Plating of the Penny by Brown & Fisher ,Die I, Volumes I, II, III

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by Lakatoi 4 »

I have a Detectamark and its quite good. Haven't tried the Safe unit but have heard its also good.

I bought my Detectamark from a reputable eBay store in the UK. Even with airmail delivery it was far cheaper than I could buy it from anyone in Australia.
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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by McBarry »

Can recognize all the watermarks from all german stamps?
I am looking for the Plating of the Penny by Brown & Fisher ,Die I, Volumes I, II, III

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by jbcev80 »

Hi

I have used the full sized SignoScope and was satisfied with it. It did do the job.

The question I have is why buy one of these? From the little I have worked with German stamps I found that the watermarks were pretty easy to detect with Ronsonol lighter fluid and a black porcelain watermark tray. It is way way cheaper than a mechanical device.

Whatever you choose stay away from Morley Bright watermark detectors. I have seen instances where the chemical packet has burst and ruined a stamp.

Jerry B

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by stallzer »

jbcev80 wrote:Whatever you choose stay away from Morley Bright watermark detectors. I have seen instances where the chemical packet has burst and ruined a stamp.Jerry B
I completely agree. While I've been fortunate enough to not have it leak, the only watermaks that can be seen are the one you can plainly see with your eyes. Complete waste of money on my part but a valuable lesson learned.

Ronsonol lighter fluid, $2.99 at Walgreens.
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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by TalentedMonkey »

I had hoped to be the first to reply, then my comment of "What Ronsonol Lighter fluid not good enough for you?" would have been a better impact!

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by Paumerrek »

I was wondering if someone could share their experience regarding the effectiveness of using lighter fluid to see single and double line watermarks for US stamps of the Washington/Franklin type issued between 1908-1922?
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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by joelk »

I own both Signoscopes (T1 and T2), and my best advice would be: just use watermark fluid.

That's what I do. It gives you a better view of the watermark, with a lot less hassle.

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by McBarry »

And where an i find that watermark fluid?
I am looking for the Plating of the Penny by Brown & Fisher ,Die I, Volumes I, II, III

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by jbcev80 »

Hi McBarry

I see you are in Greece so I do not know if you can buy Ronsonol lighter fluid. If not, buy a lighter fluid that is naphtha based. Others may be slightly oily and leave a residue.

I have been using lighter fluid for 40+ years and have had only one casualty. You should test with a cheap stamp on some of the early German stamps.

Jerry B

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by TalentedMonkey »

just make sure you don't work by naked candle light!

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by Chadlad »

just make sure you don't work by naked candle light!
Had to read that one twice, thought there was a change of topic when it first registered as "just make sure you don't work naked by candle light!" :oops:

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by joelk »

Talentedmonkey wrote:just make sure you don't work by naked candle light!
Well, if you do, we may have to move this thread to the 'water cooler'...may come in handy...

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by norvic »

stallzer wrote:
jbcev80 wrote:Whatever you choose stay away from Morley Bright watermark detectors. I have seen instances where the chemical packet has burst and ruined a stamp.Jerry B
I completely agree. While I've been fortunate enough to not have it leak, the only watermaks that can be seen are the one you can plainly see with your eyes. Complete waste of money on my part but a valuable lesson learned.
I've never had a problem with the Morelybright, except for a very old sachet which had dried up. The one advantage it has over every other is the ability to see watermarks on stamps on cover or card - something that is quite difficult with the naked eye, and nigh-on impossible with Ronsonol, I believe.
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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by McBarry »

I may buy Detectamark Watermark Detector by Stanley Gibbons,

but can i find it cheaper that 99 GBP?
I am looking for the Plating of the Penny by Brown & Fisher ,Die I, Volumes I, II, III

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by norvic »

McBarry wrote:I may buy Detectamark Watermark Detector by Stanley Gibbons,

but can i find it cheaper that 99 GBP?
The only way to buy cheaper is to buy from a dealer who gets trade discount and splits it. Trade discount is typically 20%, so it would be possible to find a dealer selling for £89, but it's unlikely. Especially in Greece. Given the costs of shipping you might just be better buying something locally - there must be some stamp & accessory dealers there?
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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by DJM »

McBarry wrote:And where an i find that watermark fluid?
For those that don't like the idea of using lighter fluid, I sell 'Prinz' watermark fluid through my website.

Darrin.

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by joelk »

Prinz. That's the one I use. It's an excellent product, and the plastic container is well designed, and seals hermetically.

Very important since this is a very volatile product.

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by Lakatoi 4 »

Ronsonol and similar fluids aren't the best from a health point of view :idea:

The MSDS produced by the manufacturer Ronson) advises that both carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide are released and basically the vapour is toxic.

Read it all here:

MATERIAL SAFETY DATA SHEET RONSON LIGHTER FLUID

http://www.local510.org/msds_sheets/Ronsonol_MSDS.pdf

I'll stick to my Detectamark, worse thing that can happen with that is an electric shock or worse, I could drop it on my toe :lol:

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by McBarry »

I decided to buy the Watermark Detector, MORLEY-BRIGHT by leuchtturn.

Is it good choise for identifing watermarks of all german stamps?
If i buy it from leuchhturn site , includes the Gel-Refill pack for MORLEY-BRIGHT , or i have to buy it seperately?
I am looking for the Plating of the Penny by Brown & Fisher ,Die I, Volumes I, II, III

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by DJM »

McBarry wrote:I decided to buy the Watermark Detector, MORLEY-BRIGHT by leuchtturn.

Is it good choise for identifing watermarks of all german stamps?
If i buy it from leuchhturn site , includes the Gel-Refill pack for MORLEY-BRIGHT , or i have to buy it seperately?
These things are next to useless in my opinion - I couldn't get a decent reading using one on ANY stamps, even one's I knew the watermark of already.

Just my opinion.

Darrin.

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by McBarry »

And what watermark detector should i buy to see the watermarks of german stamp?
What you recommend?

Panayotis
I am looking for the Plating of the Penny by Brown & Fisher ,Die I, Volumes I, II, III

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by DJM »

Like people have recommended above - Ronsonol lighter fluid or Prinz Watermark Fluid. I have even got FAR better results using 'Shellite' (a spirit in Australia like Turpentine) than any watermark detector I've ever used, and that includes the more expensive SG Detecta-Mark machines.

Darrin.

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by McBarry »

How can i use them (Ronsonol lighter fluid or Prinz Watermark Fluid ) to identify the watermarks of stamps?
As i see there are liquids.
I am looking for the Plating of the Penny by Brown & Fisher ,Die I, Volumes I, II, III

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by DJM »

The lighter Fluid (and the other watermark fluids) are like a SPIRIT, so it will evaporate soon after putting onto a stamp. Get a little black tray, put the stamp face down in it and put a drop of the fluid onto the back of the stamp and the watermark should appear.

Darrin.

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by McBarry »

ok, thanks for the advices.
I am looking for the Plating of the Penny by Brown & Fisher ,Die I, Volumes I, II, III

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by dvn8 »

Shellite works well for detecting watermarks.

Dries the stamp in few seconds after use.

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by ekatogxeir »

Any damage to the gum?

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by HayeSmyth »

None.

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by Magnus »

DJM wrote:The lighter Fluid (and the other watermark fluids) are like a SPIRIT, so it will evaporate soon after putting onto a stamp. Get a little black tray, put the stamp face down in it and put a drop of the fluid onto the back of the stamp and the watermark should appear.

Darrin.
Thats my experience to. Althoug I use pure gasoline/benzin bought from the pharmacy. Just cheeper.
/Magnus

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by petrucellij »

http://linnsonline.com/howto/refresher/watermarks_20000710/refreshercourse.aspx

http://www.usstamps.org/clarity.html
The link above describes clarity vs lighter fluid ... an article which appeared in the journal "The US specialist ".

I hope this link to linns on liquid water mark detection is helpful for those who decide to use a liquid based system :) Hope the information is informative . :)

The SB machine at the top of the thread ... I have read mixed reviews and can't offer an opinion .
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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by DJM »

I have two bottles of PRINZ watermark Fluid left on my website if anyone is interested for $A15 each.

Darrin.

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by TimjDexter »

what about looking at watermarks on stamps on piece?

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by petrucellij »

what about looking at watermarks on stamps on piece?
I think by piece you mean cover ? :)

I have read of collectors using a computer scanner with imaging software ( ie: photoshop / gimp ) to view a watermark of a stamp on cover.

This is tricky as the cancel can 'hide' the watermark . ( cover facedown and the software used to remover the digital "layers" to reveal the watermark.
It does not work all the time .

Also some collectors 'claim' that MORLEY-BRIGHT Inst-a-tector not ROLL-A-TECTOR can be used to detect watermarks on cover . Personally , I have never used this product and can not vouch for it effectiveness. :)
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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by DJM »

TimjDexter wrote:what about looking at watermarks on stamps on piece?
Hold them up to a bright light - if you still can't see the watermark then you have a choice, leave as is or soak.

D.

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by norvic »

petrucellij wrote:
what about looking at watermarks on stamps on piece?
I think by piece you mean cover ? :)
Why? Piece is a piece of a cover or card. The problem is the same, you can't see through it.
Also some collectors 'claim' that MORLEY-BRIGHT Inst-a-tector not ROLL-A-TECTOR can be used to detect watermarks on cover . Personally , I have never used this product and can not vouch for it effectiveness. :)
Why put 'claim' in quotes as if you doubt it, when you have never used it. I've already said that I have used it - specifically on GB KGV script and block watermarks on postcards. AND, while you are in doubting mode, it is easier on postcards with the ROLL-A-TECTOR than the Inst-a-tector.
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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by mads1983 »

Magnus wrote:
DJM wrote:The lighter Fluid (and the other watermark fluids) are like a SPIRIT, so it will evaporate soon after putting onto a stamp. Get a little black tray, put the stamp face down in it and put a drop of the fluid onto the back of the stamp and the watermark should appear.

Darrin.
Thats my experience to. Althoug I use pure gasoline/benzin bought from the pharmacy. Just cheeper.
/Magnus
I have always used the same, purified benzin. It's cheap and fast.

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by petrucellij »

Why put 'claim' in quotes as if you doubt it, when you have never used it. I've already said that I have used it - specifically on GB KGV script and block watermarks on postcards. AND, while you are in doubting mode, it is easier on postcards with the ROLL-A-TECTOR than the Inst-a-tector.
That is from reviews I read on the product . I am currently looking to buy a dry watermark detector. Your hands on experience with this product is helpful . :)

If I appear to be in doubting mode it is just that the product cost around $35 dollars plus shipping and I want to be sure that it is good decision for my collecting needs .

No harm No foul .
Best Regards, John
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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by fat_mike »

UV Watermark detectors are really expensive, are there cheaper alternative other than fluids. For example counterfeit money lamps or those nail UV Gel lamps (just thinking out the box...). I just need to see the watermarks on the pre war GB stamps (king edward, george etc...)

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by doug2222usa »

I have used Ronsonol for about 5 years now, and have had no problem watermarking British stamps from Victoria through George VI. I have had virtually no luck at all with the variations on the stamps of Elizabeth II, and some carry a significant price difference. Ronsonol "detects," but there's not enough contrast between the watermark and the rest of the stamp.

I don't use a tray, I use a glossy jet-black "sample" square of ceramic tile. Why ANYONE would want jet-black tiles in the bathroom, I'll leave for the next respondent. The man in Home Depot's plumbing department very cheerfully gave me a sample; he's probably still awaiting my return. :mrgreen:

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by Allanswood »

You've never seen checkerboard tiles in a kitchen? Or a single row as a feature run about 3 feet up along a wall.... or a border run on the floor... or... etc!
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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by chaddy »

I have the signascope T2 and although it is quite good, I prefer to use Prinz watermark detection fluid. In fact I have been able to detect more with the fluid than the T2. The advantage the Prinz fluid has over the lighter fluids is that it doesn't leave an odour or any oily residue. I also have a morley bright rollertector but this is consigned to the back of a drawer as I didn't find it very useful
STAMPS ARE NOT JUST FOR CHRISTMAS

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by doug2222usa »

Greg, I am an inferior decorator. :roll:

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by digeriukas »

How is stamp watermark fluid in German language ?

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by geoffgil »

On Ebay I have seen a couple of watermark detectors i.e. "Philatector Electric Watermark Detector" I gather from the packaging that may have been made around the 1950's. Are they any good?

Any help would be appreciated

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by doug2222usa »

Once upon a time, I had a Philatector, bought with a collection. As you can see from the one example currently listed on eBay, it required little plastic squeeze packets of colored ink in order to function.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/THE-PHILATECTOR-ELECTRIC-WATERMARK-D ... Sw8gVX6IEr

Mine had no ink(s), so I never used it. It struck me as a clumsy, messy, monumental nuisance. Whether it worked well for its intended purpose, I don't know. It also required a light bulb available only from Walmarts in Bhutan. :shock:

Another somewhat similar detector, whose name escapes me, came with several dozen 1 inch by 2 inch (approx) strips of differently-colored plastic acetate, designed (?) to insert somehow and screen out the color of the stamp. Never had one of those. I'd rather drop a box of strips than clean up an ink spill. :mrgreen:

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by geoffgil »

Ok, thanks for that. I don't think I'll bother bidding for it. Thinks I will stick with watermark fluid. Will certainly not be going to Butuan for a light bulb!!! Just wondered if it might be better for those difficult watermarks.

I might buy a Detectormark or something similar in the future.

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by geoffgil »

Doug

Just had another look at the Philatector on ebay uk, and it seems to use different colored filters. Is this different to the one that you described.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/361747110590?_trksid=p2060353.m143 ... EBIDX%3AIT

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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by Machaggis52 »

Lakatoi 4 wrote:Ronsonol and similar fluids aren't the best from a health point of view :idea:

The MSDS produced by the manufacturer Ronson) advises that both carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide are released and basically the vapour is toxic.

Read it all here:

MATERIAL SAFETY DATA SHEET RONSON LIGHTER FLUID

http://www.local510.org/msds_sheets/Ronsonol_MSDS.pdf

I'll stick to my Detectamark, worse thing that can happen with that is an electric shock or worse, I could drop it on my toe :lol:
I think you will find that CO and CO2 are only released on burning the fuel. CO2 is a normal constituent of air, indeed, you breathe it out, having taken in O2. :D
With kind regards, Jim

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doug2222usa
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Re: Buying a watermark detector

Post by doug2222usa »

Geoffgil, yes, quite different. Go back to my URL for the one offered in the US and you'll see no similarity whatsoever, plus you can see one of the ink packets. The US item sold and the listing and photo will disappear shortly.

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