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Topic: "Washed and Pressed" Meaning? How to recognize.  (Read 337 times)
Canadian Bill
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« on: December 20, 2021, 01:40:42 am »

New to this hobby and site so I've been reading all the back posts and came across the term "washed and pressed" that I have seen before but have not been certain of how it applies to note collecting.  I recently obtained (from a friendly bank teller) a few 2006 paper notes that were headed for the shredder.  The were real, but the paper just felt weird. Too crisp. The brail seems flattened. And the edge on the right side of all the notes is curled up.  Without knowing exactly what it means, I think these notes have been wet and are now dry.  So I'm really interested in exactly what 'washed and pressed' means to note collectors and what to look for.  Thanks in advance.


Saving paper notes from the shredder ... one 'bill' at a time!! :)
walktothewater
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« Reply #1 on: December 20, 2021, 04:44:39 pm »

A picture of your oddly textured/curled note would give us a better idea of what you mean but it is hard to tell whether a note has been washed simply by looking at it alone.  It is better for one to feel the note to tell for sure & from your description it sounds as if it has been washed. It certainly isn't uncommon.

Washed simply means the note has been in water or has been laundered.  A wet cotton-paper note dried usually loses all of its original qualities.  The detergents in laundry soap will often brighten a dirty/soiled note so people used to wash their dirty notes to make them look brighter. Unfortunately, after such "processing," the note loses most of its "original" qualities. So, when one washes a note, they're actually decreasing its "collectible qualities" & thus decreasing its collectible value.

A similar unwritten rule applies to "pressing" a note. This can be simply placing the note under some books or using a warm iron & some cloth above the note. When a person presses a note all texture & embossing are removed. The colours look dull. Embossing comes from the serial number machine punching the number (indents are generally seen on the back of the note) & any other process that defines (shapes) the end product after being printed. Some note series may be slightly wavy in texture after the sheets have had their ink dry.

It is very tough to discern whether a note has been washed or pressed by seeing a scan (especially if the contrast is too high). A photo is slightly better but one needs to put up good side lighting to be sure. So, unfortunately, one relies on the honesty & good eyes of the online seller. Otherwise, if the note is pricey, it would be better to inspect the note oneself or buy TPG notes with "EPQ;" "PPQ" or "Original" designations. 

For well circulated notes it is a bit easier to tell when a note has been processed.  Usually one sees flattened creases and a white line (missing underprint/design) when notes have been pressed. These notes usually have been washed too & usually the underprint is too bright & the imprint (such as "Canadian Banknote Company") below the border looks impaired.
« Last Edit: December 20, 2021, 04:50:59 pm by walktothewater »

Canadian Bill
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« Reply #2 on: December 20, 2021, 05:51:22 pm »

Thank you very much for that!!  So many of the Senior Members here are so knowledgeable, and I'm an avid student!!  I'm also a bit photo uploading challenged and haven't read up yet on the how to's of posting photos, but will soon.  That being said I looked at the notes again after reading your response and it sounds like my notes would be a little more damaged if they had been washed.  Thank you again for sharing your knowledge!!!


Saving paper notes from the shredder ... one 'bill' at a time!! :)
 

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