Stamp hinges are used to mount stamps on a page. They are usually small strips of a semi-transparent paper with adhesive on one side. Most are ‘pre-folded’ although some are not. Used properly, they allow stamps to be mounted on a page with minimal disturbance and allow hobbyist to lift the stamp and view the back of the stamp.
Most pre-folded hinges are folded with about 1/3 of the length of the hinge. The short side is the one you apply to the stamp itself. The adhesive side is generally the one that looks textured and/or shiny. Carefully moisten the short side lightly and attach near the top of the stamp. Lightly moisten the longer side and attach to the page.
Never, ever try to remove a just placed
hinge. Chances are high they you will damage the stamp of the page if you
try to do this; always allow the hinge to dry completely before attempting
Hobbyists should also be aware of several
things about stamp hinges. First, because moisture is used to attach them to
the stamp, they will disturb the gum on any unused stamp. You will find very
few early stamps that have never been hinged and have undisturbed gum; the
value of a stamp may be negatively impacted if you hinge a previously
unhinged mint stamp. Also note that not all hinges are truly ‘peelable’.
Older quality hinges such as Dennison marketed very good peelable hinges but
they are no longer manufactured. At this time, we cannot recommend any
modern peelable hinges.
If you must use modern hinges, apply as little moisture as possible. This results in a semi-pealable hinge; one that will come off easily about 75% of the time.