Suspect Scott #446, Used Pair.
This analysis was for a client. According to The Experts Book this stamp is sometimes faked and can only be manufactured from a #427 by trimming the perforations off at the top and bottom edges. As a side note the #427 does not come in booklet form and there is no single line watermark flat plate imperforate stock in which to make a fake from. The only imperforate stock is the #346 but it is double line watermarked and a fake made from it would not fool anyone. The #446 can be confused with the single line watermarked rotary press printed #457 or in rare cases the unwatermarked rotary press printed #495. A search of the Philatelic Foundations certificate database found 634 issued certificates with two being misidentified #457 and a single misidentified #495. The catalogue value is $425 for a used pair.
The suspect is flat plate printed and is single line watermarked with a reversed “P” and “S” that reads horizontal.
Because there is no impeforate flat plate single line watermark stock to which perforations can be added the perforations must be genuine and the straight edges need only be examined.
The height is just over 24.75mm from left to right. The top edge does not show signs of recent trimming. At first it looked like the bottom edge may have a couple of widely spaced divots on the edge that do line up with gauge 10 but after examining the entire bottom edge under high magnification an ink stain was found that goes over the edge staining the fibers on the edge much in the same way as the cancel on the top edge looks – see images below.
Images of the bottom edge fibers.
Notice how the ink stain affects the bottom edge fibers the same way as the top cancel ink.
Conclusion: In my opinion the suspect is a genuine #446, used pair. I recomended that the client send the pair out to be expertized and it came back with a Weiss certificate that the pair was indeed genuine.
Reference material used:
As always comments and suggestions are always welcome.
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