Printings of the 2d Slate Queen Victoria Keyplate Definitive Watermarked Crown CA 1884-1886
- July 8, 1884 - 58 sheets of 60, or 3,480 stamps.
- September 24, 1884 - 60 sheets, or 3,600 stamps.
- December 16, 1884 - 56 sheets, or 3,360 stamps
- April 21, 1885 - 61 sheets, or 3,660 stamps.
- July 13, 1885 - 61 sheets, or 3,660 stamps.
- September 29, 1885 - 63 sheets, or 3,780 stamps.
- December 29, 1885 - 61 sheets, or 3,660 stamps.
- March 29, 1886 - 60 sheets, or 3,600 stamps.
- June 30, 1886 - 60 sheets, or 3,600 stamps.
- October 12, 1886 - 76 sheets, or 4,560 stamps.
- December 13, 1886 - 80 sheets, or 4,800 stamps.
- All the printings made after April 1886, i.e. the last three printings should come with the colourless double gum that causes the mint stamps to curl vertically. This gum will be smooth and not crackly.
- Printings made between July 1885 and March 1886 will tend to have the smooth, toned single layer of gum that does not cause the stamps to curl, but is not crackly. This would correspond to printings five through eight.
- Printings prior to July 1885, i.e, the first four printings, will be found with crackly gum, or will be found without any gum at all.
- Most copies with CDS cancels dated after 1888 will generally be from the last three printings, as will copies cancelled with the 9-bar oval killers.
- Although the 8-bar oval obliterator was in use until 1897, my expectation is that most copies cancelled with it will have come from the first 8 printings (i.e. before March 1886).
Notice how the head plate and duty plate colours are the same. You can even see that the gum is crackly by seeing the tiny gum wrinkles that are visible in the paper when the stamps are viewed from the front.
Now here are four used examples:
- A frame break above the "T" of "Two", and
- The upper bar of the first "E" of "Pence" and the upper left of the "N" of "Pence" are both truncated at an angle.