Guide to QEII Errors & Varieties


All missing phosphor errors listed be it missing phosphor bands or missing "all over phosphor" are completely omitted and have been checked with UV in dark room. Collectors should be aware that some issues e.g 1968 Anniversaries 4d value, 1968 Christmas 4d value can have phosphor bands difficult to see with the naked eye and caution should be exercised in trying to make a decision without the aid of UV check in a darkened room.


Phosphor band shifts are listed on this site only if they result in a change in the "normal" number of bands on the stamp e.g a normal two band stamp with a shift creating a single broad band. If this broad band is positioned away from the stamp edges it can usually be distinguished with the naked eye. However broad bands created at one edge or other of the stamp should be checked with UV to ensure that there is no encroachment on to perforations (even just the tips) on the opposite side. Items with encroachment may still be collectable but should be described as "wide band / narrow band" varieties rather than BROAD BAND errors.

Some BROAD BAND errors exist with distinct variations in positioning on some issues e.g the 1971 "Ulster" Paintings issue. Where these exist some positionings are more common than others. Where such examples are known the position of the broad band will be clarified by describng its position relative to the left edge of stamp e.g 1mm or 4mm from edge.

Diagonal phosphor bands. A number of issues in the 1960s and 70s appeared with phosphor bands inclined at significant degrees from the vertical. Many issues do have phosphor bands that deviate minimally from true vertical. Although a precise degree is not given to determin the point at which such bands become collectable varieties one instictively knows when a true diagonal band is present.

Collectors should be aware that not all known TRUE band shift vaieties have yet reached the catalogues and quite likely there are still others waiting to be discovered.

As with colour shifts, embossing shifts can be of varying degrees and as with colour shifts can affect different stamps in the same sheet to varying degrees. On this site embossing shifts are listed only if they result in the embossed Queen's head being completely separated (no overlap) from the gold Queen's head. Embossing shifts of lesser degrees may be listed on my other websites.


Just as can occur with the coloured inks used to print the stamp "blade" flaws can affect the phosphor application. Sometimes this results in a large and random "wash" of phosphor covering a significant portion of design. In extreme cases effectively creating an "all over phospor" effect. In other cases there can be a more discreet application of additional phosphor resulting in the appearance of extra bands some quite narrow others extremely broad. Such errors and varieties if listed will appear in the "Miscellaneous Errors" section or on my website.


Only colour shifts that are significant by their magnitude or lesser shifts that create significant distortion of the normal stamp image e.g marked blurring are considered for listing on this or my other sites. Some (particularly prevalent on ebay) list minor colour misalignments as colour shift varieties. On many multicolour stamps a slight misalignment of one or two colours is almost the norm and collectors although welcome to collect these should not expect them to have wide collector appeal. With regard to minor perforation shifts, collectors should be careful that items described as such are not just the result of poorly centered stamp designs.