Coin Shows

Discussion in 'Coin Chat' started by James Boat, Mar 1, 2021.

  1. James Boat

    James Boat Member

    Hi - looks like there will be a coin show in Denver in a few months:

    I've never been to a coin show. Are they good venues to sell coins to dealers, or are they really there for individuals interested in buying coins?

    I have a lot of small value coins ranging from $1 to $10 each. I'd like to either sell the coins for cash, or trade many small value coins for a few larger value pieces. I'm trying to figure out the best way to approach this (if you've been watching the "what's it worth," forum, I've been posting some of the more interesting items there, but most items are of nominal value).

    Thank you in advance for your advice,

  2. Avatar

    Guest User Guest

    to hide this ad.
  3. JayAg47

    JayAg47 Well-Known Member

    Coins shows are not the place for selling your coins (especially low value coins) to other sellers (at least in the shows I visited). You'd be better off trading them with other buyers, but not in a coin show if you don't have a stall, as that's not the etiquette.
    But it never hurts to ask the dealer if they'd like to have a look at your coins anyway!
    fretboard and Maxfli like this.
  4. fretboard

    fretboard Defender of Old Coinage!

    No, terrible place to sell coins but I've made some really great trades at a coin show. Here's one I got on a trade! :D That said, I probably asked 10 tables before I found someone who would trade me. :smuggrin:

    1871a.JPG 1871c.JPG 1871b.JPG 1871d.JPG 1871e.JPG 1871f.JPG 1871g.JPG
    Penny Luster likes this.
  5. SilverMike

    SilverMike Well-Known Member

    I’ve been to that show several times. You certainly can take what you have and trades might be made, but selling is less likely as others have noted. There are a nice mix of dealers at that show and you will find a huge mix of inventory from minimally priced things to expensive items.
  6. baseball21

    baseball21 Well-Known Member

    Just spend the 1 dollar ones, pretty much no dealer is going to have any interest in those and if they do they're just going to give you face value for it. Dealers do not like trading more expensive single item for a lot of low value items that they likely already have a lot of, and will take them a long time to sell.

    Shows can be good, they can also be awful. Many people make the mistake of thinking that just because someone has a table at the show that they're honest good people, that is far from the case especially at smaller local shows. There almost certainly will be dealers there that have a lot of inventory that was cracked out from details slabs being sold as problem free, and there will very likely be dealers there that will try and take advantage of someone they think doesn't know any better. Now that said there are usually good dealers at every show you just have to figure out who they are which is the hard part.

    In generally shows usually aren't great to sell at unless you have a long relationship with someone, most of the dealers will only want to buy if they get a great deal on it, but it never hurts to try. Don't be scared to say no or walk away though. Generally speaking trading gets you the worst results. Usually the person that would give you the highest value for your coins ends up being someone different than the person who has the coin you want. Try different tables for offers they will generally have a range, but with low value stuff like that it will very likely be difficult to get much interest from them. Directly to another collector will likely be your best bet, just don't do it in the show as shows will throw people out that do that that didn't pay for a table
    wxcoin likes this.
  7. John Skelton

    John Skelton Morgan man!

    Are you saying that the coin shows no longer tolerate what used to be called vest pocket deals?

    And while I'm sure you can get ripped off from some dealers at a show, wouldn't you minimize that risk by buying only slabbed coins?
  8. Mr.Q

    Mr.Q Well-Known Member

    Be safe and sensible, and you won't be sorry. Do not take you're coins to a show, it could leave you open to something you would rather not do. Research you're collection, seek advice from local dealers, and/or a numismatist. Good luck
  9. baseball21

    baseball21 Well-Known Member

    They never tolerated them selling to other customers. It's just whether or not you get caught doing it

    That would help yes
    Kentucky likes this.
  10. Publius2

    Publius2 Well-Known Member

    From what I've seen, the "vest pocket dealers" are generally free to buy and sell to other dealers, both those buying a table and not. I remember at the last FUN show sitting at one of my favorite dealers table and a fellow sat down beside me with a PCGS box full of very nice and expensive slabbed coins which he was offering to my dealer. While he was willing to let me look at the coins, it was apparent that they were not for sale to me. Would he have sold to me out on the sidewalk away from prying eyes? Who's to say?
  11. James Boat

    James Boat Member

    This has been a tremendously helpful string and answers a number of questions I had. Thank you all that took the time to respond. Such an impressive wealth of knowledge here!

    I was originally wondering if trading with a dealer would yield better terms vs. selling for cash. It sounds like this approach presents its own inefficiencies that make the practice unappealing.

    Seperately, if anyone has any experience with reputable, honest, Colorado coin dealers, I'd appreciate any recommendations. I live in the mountains, so any dealer in Denver, Boulder, or Ft. Collins are going to be about the same 3-hour drive for me.

    As always, thank you -

  12. MK Ultra

    MK Ultra Active Member

    I think until you go and see, it's tough to say. If nothing else, a great learning experience.

    Sometimes the best trades are the ones you don't make.

    Different market to be sure, but he's a story I'll share. This is 1991 give or take a year. I went to my local baseball card store to try to trade for their 1984 Fleer Update. A very rare set (15 to 20k copies?) and had the only 1984 cards of Kirby Puckett, Roger Clemens, and with Topps, the 1984 Dwight Gooden. Some other random folks, Brett Saberhagen, I digress. It had a price tag of $400 and I was able to trade $400 worth of $5 to $10 cards for it. The store didn't have big spenders and was never going to sell the item, but they would sell the stuff that I offered.

    Another one in coins, 2 years ago I was able to trade 3 or 4 smaller priced items for one bigger priced item because the dealer was looking to get out of the currency and wanted more silver items.

    Go to the show, have fun, take your items, ask questions but step aside when cash paying customers are there. Remember, sometimes the best trades are the ones you don't make.
  13. John Skelton

    John Skelton Morgan man!

    Interesting. One of the first sites about coins I came across talked about them as if it was a normal practice.
  14. Publius2

    Publius2 Well-Known Member

    I have done business numerous times at the FUN show in Orlando with a fellow out of, I think, Fort Collins. His name is Jason Flowers but I don't know what name he does business as.
  15. baseball21

    baseball21 Well-Known Member

    It is as long as they’re dealing with the people that paid for the tables. If you’re buying stuff from one table and selling to another because you’re savvy enough to do that or wheeling and dealing with dealers that’s perfectly fine. Where you’d get kicked out is if you’re walking around buying and selling with other customers essentially being a dealer at the show without paying the fee for the table. The shows don’t like it because you avoided the fee, and the dealers with tables get ticked off because they did pay for the show and you’re potentially taking business away from them.

    People can get away with it sometimes or for a while, but if people figure out what you’re doing dealers are going to start complaining about you to the show and get you kicked out
  16. Kentucky

    Kentucky Supporter! Supporter

    I was very naive at the first show I ever went to (I think in Atlanta) and in chatting with one of the dealers, I innocently asked "What do you do for security at shows like this". After giving me a fishy-eyed look he said that all he would have to do was catch the eye of one of the guards and then look at me and nod and I would be followed the rest of the show...gulp...I shut up and moved on.
    fretboard and MK Ultra like this.
  17. Mac McDonald

    Mac McDonald Well-Known Member

    All very interesting and helpful tips, insights, etc...thanks to all who shared. Despite collecting off/on since boyhood, I haven't been to a coin show since a boy at the town's Grange Hall.
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page