Topic: $5 1954's with 'light' and 'heavy' signatures  (Read 4880 times)
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« on: July 06, 2015, 07:15:39 pm »

I was wondering if anyone is keeping track of prefixes (or collects) the 'light' and 'heavy' Beattie - Rasminsky signature varieties?  I am attaching a scan of  I/S and M/X prefix 5's but you can find both 'varieties' on $1, $10, $20, $50 & $100.
I have never seen dealers list the variety. Charlton doesn't mention anything (but I do not have the latest edition).
Since the signatures were applied by letterpress; is this just heavier ink application? Or wear on the letterpress?
The difference for me is more than enough to call it (and collect) as a distinct variety.

I actually am a world paper collector (Africa, Islamic and British Commonwealth) and world collectors are familiar and collect such varieties.
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« Reply #1 on: July 06, 2015, 07:19:21 pm »

Sorry, he is the scan.
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« Reply #2 on: July 06, 2015, 07:21:06 pm »

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« Reply #3 on: July 06, 2015, 08:17:51 pm »

Hi there,

Until approx 1968 the signature on the notes were applied by typography as a separate step in the printing process.  These signatures were heavier with considerable variation in the amount of ink applied, and they wandered around bit in alignment.  After 1968 the signatures were engraved right onto the plates resulting is a finer signature with no wandering.  A few of us have been looking for the changeover from typed to engraved signatures both in terms of serial number and the plate number.  I am currently working on an article for the CPMS journal on this topic.   Just to whet your appetite the changeover in the 1954 $5 notes occurred  towards the end of prefix Y/S.   ....  so your I/S note has a typed signature and your M/X note has an engraved signature. 


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« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2017, 11:32:17 pm »

Actually there are three different types of signatures.  The thick signatures were changed for thinner ones I believe somewhere within the K/S prefix.  In my notes I have K/S 0000001 listed as "letterpress" and K/S 6666666 listed as "lithographed" (not sure if these are the correct terms for the thick and thin signatures respectively).  Then the the switch to engraved signatures occurred somewhere between Y/S an Z/S based on my observations which agree with eyevet's.

note: the difference between the litho and engraved signatures is a bit hard to make out.  You really need to look at a bunch of notes and compare the exact position of the signatures to tell which ones are which.  The older letterpress on the other hand are much thicker though and can be recognized easily.

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