Sheet of stamps

A stamp sheet or short arc is the tenant of several stamps with the same design in a table- like system. The interstices between the individual stamps are the same size and leave room for a cut or for the perforation.

Size and format

The stamp sheet is now the most common type of stamp assembly. The number of stamps in an arc, whose format depends on the size and format of the individual stamps. Small-format stamps are usually printed in sheets of 100 stamps, larger -format stamps in sheets of 50 or 25 postage stamps.

The German Post AG has passed on November 13, 1994, due to rationalization to sheetlet. In these, the edge is especially designed, which is also a new area of ​​collection has been created.

The printed sheet

Under stamp sheet one actually understands only a part of the actual spread. Stamps are in fact usually printed in four contiguous sheets to make the best use of printing paper to achieve. For sale at the post office but get only the divided into four parts signatures. This stamp sheet is therefore also called counter sheet. The sheets produced for Booklets assembly is referred to as a contrast Bookletpanesheets.


The empty fields that connect the individual switch sheets together are called intermediate webs. Usually these are cut after printing in half, so you get four switches arches. The half- empty fields or intermediate webs then form the sheet margin. From some versions and Booklets sheets but get undivided intermediate ribs with attached stamps of neighboring switches sheets / Bookletpanesheets half in the trade ( stamp - Blank panel - stamp ). This intermediate webs can be printed either empty or with Strichelleisten ( the edge strips in the stamp booklet ). The Philatelist distinguishes between horizontal and vertical gutters. A special feature of the intermediate webs is at the heart of the sheet, where all four switches connected arcs. Intermediate ribs and heart pieces are very popular with collectors and reach, especially in traditional spending high catalog prices.


Individual switch arcs and Bookletpanesheets sections are printed for better distinction to each other by 180 ° rotated, which may directly adjacent to each other or in addition found a gutter between the marks. The two mutually inverted stamps referred to as the reciprocal of the philatelist pressure or as beche with gutter.

Stamp arrangement and sheet position

The stamp arrangement in the arches done tabulated in rows and columns. This arrangement can specify exactly the arc space of a postage stamp. However, the philatelist is one of the individual stamps in a horizontal direction from left to right, the post in a vertical direction from top to bottom. However, the third stamp in the sixth row in a 10 × 10 sheet of stamps for collectors would therefore be the 53rd stamp for the post office the 26th stamp in the sheet.

A special feature of the stamp arrangement, the first stamps of Great Britain. These stamps, which had been printed by the normal system in 20 rows and 12 columns, the sheet position was indicated on each stamp. This resulted in a total of 240 different stamps. This should protect against counterfeiting. In the lower corners, and later in the four corners, points were found for the various rows and columns. An A in the lower left corner was for the first line, a B for the second, C for the third, ..., the column specified by the same principle in the bottom-right corner. The first stamp was therefore the letters A - A, the last T - L.

After the war, Germany's brands were also produced by private printers. An example is the Bautenserie 1948 When printing sheet manufacture the firm Westerman, there were following pressure plate assembly. :

A first prototype was 10 times copied photographically and mounted side by side, thus the primary characteristics emerged (PM).

2 of 10 horizontal strip was then copied 10 times and mounted with each other, so that a 100 film developed. This resulted in each individual field the secondary features (SM). The primary features were characterized at each vertical column (ie 10 times ) available.

3 Now the 100 film was copied at least 5 times. Four of them were like a chess board mounted to a 400 film to get the size of a printed sheet and the fifth was completed as replacement foil for any failing individual fields of the 400 film to replace. ( Film exchange) Now there was logically on the 400 film 40 same PMs, four identical SMs per field nor a Tertiary feature ( TM).

4 Now more printing plates were prepared by etching with the 400 film. Thus, the Quaternary features emerged (QM ). Also any retouching on the 400 film or on the pressure plate are considered QMs.

Sheet margin

As a margin of sheet refers to the brands pendant blank fields that are arranged around the stamp sheet. These are often not printed. In some cases, however, one finds numerous further information on the printed sheet margins. These include:

  • Edition numbers
  • Margin of sheet labels (advertising, Notes on the stamp issue, ...)
  • Pressure data
  • House order numbers - HAN
  • Registration marks
  • Plate numbers
  • Sidebar
  • Series value counter
  • Totalizer


When sheetfed occur numerous special features. The most important are:

  • Andrew's crosses
  • Decorative boxes
  • Retouching