Another finished ancient

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Inspector43, Feb 12, 2021.

  1. Inspector43

    Inspector43 73 Year Collector Supporter

    Here is another ancient that I have finished. It was very rough and parts missing. I have brought it as far as I dare. It is a Constantius II Fel Temp with a Mint Mark of R S Palm Branch. Minted in Rome. Like I always say, since I am still very new at this, comments and corrections are welcome.
    Constantius II R S Palm Branch.jpg
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  3. Clavdivs

    Clavdivs Supporter! Supporter

    I think you've got all you can out of it... nice job - to get it to the point of identification is satisfying.
    Mammothtooth and Inspector43 like this.
  4. Evan Saltis

    Evan Saltis 2 years on CT Supporter

    really nice coin, cleaning job to be proud of, I'd say.
  5. Everett Guy

    Everett Guy Well-Known Member

    Thats a great cleaning job. Do you havd a before pic?
    Inspector43 likes this.
  6. Inspector43

    Inspector43 73 Year Collector Supporter

    I don't think I do. But, I will search through my pics. I have had this one for a year or so. Been working it a little at a time.
    Everett Guy likes this.
  7. Inspector43

    Inspector43 73 Year Collector Supporter

    Thanks. I had originally tried to get all of the coins to perfection. It can't be done. So, I have decided that if I can get them to identification stage it would be a positive.
    DonnaML, Everett Guy and Clavdivs like this.
  8. gsimonel

    gsimonel Supporter! Supporter

    One of the keys of cleaning uncleaned ancient coins is knowing when to stop. I think you have gotten all you can out of this coin, and any further cleaning would likely do more harm than good. I applaud your judgement.
    Everett Guy and Inspector43 like this.
  9. otlichnik

    otlichnik Well-Known Member

    Good job. Fully identifiable. You have got it pretty near to original as it was definitely not a quality piece when it was made - part of the mass coinage of the time.

    If you want to learn more about this coin (perhaps too much) my article of FEL TEMP REPARATIO Falling Horsemen can be dowloaded for free on at:

  10. Inspector43

    Inspector43 73 Year Collector Supporter

    Great. I love to read history. If I can I will download it and print it.
    Thanks for the feedback.
    +VGO.DVCKS likes this.
  11. Everett Guy

    Everett Guy Well-Known Member

    @Inspector43 I had to ask..are these more clean-able? I just picked them up and find lots of 75-100 for $55-80 average. I thought of getting more to get different rulers. Just wasnt sure if a small cleaning might shine them up or a no-no? I see a couple of them look cleaned, so I am referring to the "dirt" looking ones. 20210212_164957.jpg 20210212_164819.jpg
  12. otlichnik

    otlichnik Well-Known Member

    To me those have been fully cleaned. The Claudius II has some malachite encrustations that won't come off. They all look great as is. Everything is visible and readable. Losing all the dirt would lose the nice contrast.


    PS. I like how Victory lacks a head - likely due to a "clogged die" - on Valen's Aquileia SECVRITAS REIPVBLICAE.
    DonnaML, +VGO.DVCKS and Everett Guy like this.
  13. Inspector43

    Inspector43 73 Year Collector Supporter

    I try to follow the general rule that if you can clearly identify them they need to be left alone. I'm not real good at that yet. I think your coins, as stated by @otlichnik above, are great the way they are. I personally like coins that are not identifiable as they are and need cleaning just to ID them.
  14. Everett Guy

    Everett Guy Well-Known Member

    Thanks, I think they look good also. Definitely a good deal buying them in lots of 4 or more
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  15. LaCointessa

    LaCointessa Supporter! Supporter

    :stop::stop::stop: Hold it right there!! o_O Step away from those coins!!! ;)


    I wouldn't do anything to any of those coins you posted other than (if you just HAD to do something) make a few extremely light-handed swipes (not scrubbing back and forth) -- but going in one direction at a time, turning the coin after each swipe (or two) taking long gentle strokes across the coins with the lightest of touches with a clean make up removal pad. I would invest one whole pad to each coin. I always turn the make up pad also, finding a clean spot, so as to not redeposit the dust/gunk I just removed in one swipe back onto the coin with the next swipe.

    make up remover pads.png

    wrapped around a baby toothbrush.

    finger babytoothbrush.png

    Please do not wet any of those coins. You want them perfectly dry if you do dust them off with the make-up pad wrapped toothbrush.
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2021
  16. LaCointessa

    LaCointessa Supporter! Supporter

    Howdy @Inspector43 What method did you use? Each of us does it differently.
    I confess that some coins sacrificed their lives in order for me to learn what method I like the best for extremely crusty and gunky/gummy ancients.

    I have come to the conclusion that some people who clean ancient coins stop short and should go a bit further. To my very pleasant surprise I have often (not always) found gorgeous unexpected patinas under what I thought was the patina I did not wish to remove. Of course, that changes the work on that coin and makes it take longer to clean but it is worth it and quite satisfying.

    Being able to attribute the coin being cleaned is great and it provides the information needed to confirm what is under the gunk. Then I can go carefully and not mistake a star or letter (whatever) in a field as being lump of gunk. I also want to end up with a coin that looks as beautiful as possible.

    I think I can see that you have exposed a bit of the metal under the gunk on your coin. My OCD is starting to kick because once I have exposed any little bit of metal on the raised parts of a coin, I will probably keep going on all the raised parts.

    I plan to post some recently cleaned (and in the process of being cleaned) coins soon; but, I have some pressing chores and work to do and that will have to take precedence. It IS quite an undertaking to photograph the coins before, during and at the end of the cleaning process; but, I always try to do that so that others can actually see how the coin started out and how it ended up. I like showing the intermediate steps as well. I think folks enjoy seeing those. And, I figure that if I were not to do it that way, someone would eventually say: "If there is no photo, it it did not happen." :(:hilarious:
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2021
  17. Inspector43

    Inspector43 73 Year Collector Supporter

    LAC, This is two part reply. I have taken coins to the original surface when it is comfortable to do so. Here is a Constans - Emperor on Galley that is nearly original. The dark areas remaining I am not confident about trying to remove. I will discuss your question about my method soon.
    Constans on Galley BSIS Symbol.jpg
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2021
  18. Inspector43

    Inspector43 73 Year Collector Supporter

    I think most of us use similar processes to yours. I soak and lightly clean until a picture starts to show. Then I try to find a similar one in all the research material available. Sometimes that material is here on this forum. Thanks to all for that.
    When I get an image I print it and use it as a guide. As the coin evolves I fine tune the reference images. Once I am confident in the representations coin to coin, I will print a new reference to use in completion.
    The final step is to compose a page that includes the reference image, the text detail description and an image of my coin.


    Catalog Image

    Gallienus Billon Antoninianus. 267-268 AD. GALLIENVS AVG, radiate head right / IOVI CONS AVG, goat standing or walking right, ς in ex. RIC 207, RSC 341.

    My Coin Image

  19. LaCointessa

    LaCointessa Supporter! Supporter

    Wow! Do you mind messaging me and letting me know where I can pick up some coins like you got for that price? I wouldn't buy them all...promise! That is an exceptional price for the number of coins of that quality. Thanks in advance! ;):)
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  20. LaCointessa

    LaCointessa Supporter! Supporter

    When you say: you 'lightly clean' your coin after soaking, what do you mean, exactly (if you don't mind sharing).
    Edited: Oh! I see that you said you would describe your process soon. Thanks! :-D

    I was thinking that most people do usually wet their crusty ancients. I never soak or wet the coins I am cleaning. Anyway, enjoy!
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  21. Inspector43

    Inspector43 73 Year Collector Supporter

    I don't try to work on them with any mechanical process while they are wet. I will use a soft brush on a coin to get a general idea of the surface. If the crust doesn't come off easy I will soak it. Some solutions will penetrate the crust and allow it to be removed easier. Repeat, repeat, repeat. Each coin has its own characteristics. Sometimes a light brass brushing, in one direction only, will remove a good bit of the dirt. If I wet or soak a coin I will use canned air to dry it before I do any more work. I also use canned air to remove debris as I work.
    DonnaML and LaCointessa like this.
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