Suspect Scott #441, Unused MNH Guideline Pair.
This MNH guideline pair was part if a lot of 63 items I bought at auction recently. This is a rarely faked coil because it is not expensive with singles cataloguing at $2.00 and ordinary pairs coming in at $8.00. The guideline pairs are sometimes faked because they carry a slightly higher catalogue value of $17.50. This coil can be faked by adding perforations to the top and bottom edges of a trimmed #408, adding perforations at the top and bottom of a #408E, trimming the perforations from the left and/or right edges of a #424 and trimming the perforations from the left or right of a #424d.
The watermark of the suspect is a single line that reads horizontally (see Fig 1) which eliminate the possibility that the suspect is a booklet pair #424d.
The suspect measures 21.5+ mm wide which is ideal for the issue. Next comes the examination of the perforations. Fig 2, 3 and 4 show the top, middle and bottom perforations overlaid on known genuine 9.97 perforations.
As can be seen the perforations are a perfect match to the known good example. Lastly the guideline is examened in Fig 5. A piece of thin foil was placed on top of the guideline and the rounded end of a used pencil eraser was used to tap the foil into the engraved design of the stamp. The guideline should be engraved like the rest of the stamp and should show in the foil with the rest of the design.
As can be seen the guideline does leave an impression in the foil indicating that it is a genuine engraved guideline.
In conclusion I can state with absolute certainty that the suspect is indeed a genuine #441 guideline pair that is MNH.
Reference material used: The Expert's Book. A practical guide to the authentication of United States stamps. By Paul W. Schmid
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