Discussion in 'US Coins Forum' started by JimMayor007, Sep 5, 2007.
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What about the mark behind Liberty's head on the AT coin that isn't apparent on the NT coin?
I saw those in person at FUN and got to say they were truly amazing!
How can these be the same coins i see a different die alignment
nevermind i think its just turned a little
I have been reading quietly. biting my tongue since this thread reappeared, as I know some will be offended. I have read a lot on the topic of toning, both metallurgically, chemical, physically, etc., and I really don't feel that many have a way of determining AT from NT unless the coin has a liquid wave factor rather than a gas wave factor on the surface. If it looks like a smooth wave front of color, like some one poured a solution on the coin and it set there, then there is a high probability it is AT, but if it has a wavy vaporous front with not distinctive smooth edge, then no one can accurately tell by the color nor the pattern. Some oldtimers like Doug and others who have seen thousands and thousands of coins can say " it looks like...." and be somewhat accurate as they have seen how toning affects the struck surface and the metallurgical composition of the coin. And maybe some graders have also seen as many. But the chemistry is fairly well known, and the color interference patterns on the flow lines are also. Chemistry is chemistry, rather it is gas out of a bottle , or gas in the atmsophere or holder. Over 30 years ago I mimiced others and placed coins in cardpaper envelopes. they were white when they went in and toned when I removed them recently. I put some on a forum and they were immediately called AT. I was not going to argue after all, there was no proof besides my word. The same today. If you have a raw toned coin, and can't prove it was toned in your possession, you can't say it is NT. If you see a photo of a toned coin, same. If you buy a slabbed toned coin unless it has a proven natural change as on some slabbed hordes.
The only exception that I do not feel the coin doctors can duplicate is the "shadow" effect you see on the Sunny coin at the date and lettering. This seems to me to be an aspect that develops with NT slowly over a longer period of time. Maybe I will be shown wrong about the shadowing.
I respect everyones opinion on this subject, but I suspect there are a large number of mislabeled toned coins out there. NT called AT , and AT called NT. Why does it matter really? AT coins existed before the big price escalation because many liked the toning. Anyone who says they know an AT from a NT should have proven reasons rather than a gut feeling. We all know how we feel when a coin is graded by "gut" rather than "technical".
Hey, I still like all of you.
I can determine what is AT as long as it is obvious. I have been experimenting with AT all day. With bleach, sulfur, and baking coins in the oven. :whistle: I am not doing it to deceive anyone just rather figure out what is what. There are many people out there that can AT a coin and pass it off with a TPG.
I agree completely with your opinion on the subject. One of my biggest pet peeves is people proclaiming a coin AT without providing specific reasons for their opinion.
My guess is that I am one of the most liberal toned coin collectors. I am much more accepting of artificially toned and questionably toned coins than most collectors and don't think that artificially toned coins deserve the stigma that they receive.
Let's put it this way, if the Sunnywood 81-S was declared to be AT with supporting documentation and proof, it would not make me want that coin any less than I do at present.
Garrett, I have to disagree. There are not many coin doctors that can get their coins past NGC & PCGS graders.
When I first hopped on this board, there was a thread with an AT Gobrecht S$1.
Perhaps your view of the value hasn't changed, but if you put that coin in a Genuine (AT) holder and it's worth 1/2 of the price at best IMO (not to mention the upgrade, if any, that the AT job garnered).
desertgem - what is our opinion of the Gobrecht piece - AT or NT (with the caveat that it is a picture based opinion). Secondly, do you think the two Gobrecht coins are the same coin?
I can't dispute that at all, but the fact remains that I like the AT version better. Maybe I should seek to purchase that Gobrecht at a nice discount.
I agree and I think you are one of the most liberal toned coin collectors I know -- not that there's anything wrong with that (to the contrary, I find your view refreshing!).
I am sorry to say that I think you are fooling yourself.
I doubt you'll find that coin at a discount -- the PCGS tomb it resides in will likely never be cracked nor discounted -- but if you believe what you're saying, I think you should seek out the coins in "Genuine/AT" holders because you WILL find those at a discount.
Quite frankly, I think your rationalizing things and the end-game of your logic -- essentially the ends justify the means -- is not something that I, personally, subscribe to. However, I certainly recognize and respect your right to.
When a coin doctor gets a AT coin in a holder, that is their version of a coin collector completing a set. It does happen.
Can you explain what that last paragraph means, it is a little confusing. Don't worry about offending me, I have thick skin.
BTW, How many coin doctors do you think there are that have over 25% success rate at getting their coins encapsulated.
I know it happens, I have seen the coins. I just don't think there are many people that can pull it off with a high rate of success.
What I meant by that last paragraph is that I think you're rationalizing what you view as a hopeless situation. I think you believe that we numismatists stand no chance of being able to distinguish between an AT and an NT coin, and your "rationalization" is that you will take a position that it doesn't matter. If the coin is pretty, the coin is pretty. Thus the ends (pretty) justify the means (AT).
While I tend to agree with the premise (we'll never really know), I don't agree with the conclusion (I don't care NT-vs-AT, i.e. the ends justify the means) -- and I realize fully that this leaves a world full of grey (i.e. QT) coins.
As for your second question.... I would only be guessing, but my sense is that the docs figure out pretty quick what works and what doesn't and I would suspect they all do better than 25%. I know of at least one individual that has toning coins in old Wayte Raymond albums down to a science, and has a much, much higher acceptance rate than 25%. The evidence of their early handiwork is posted in other forums for all to see. I have heard of individuals who do album and envelope toning at a virtual assembly line rate and use others to submit their coins and cover their tracks. These people aren't fools -- they are both smart and nefarious: a dangerous combination.
Respectfully submitted as MHO...Mike
My opinion about NT vs AT is essentially that I don't care as long as the coin is attractive. I am forced to care however because others care. As long as the numismatic community places a stigma on AT coins, those coins will be severely impacted in a negative way with regards to price. So although I don't care how the toning got there, I do care about my money which forces me to care about the originality of the toning.
My idea has always been that the TPG's should encapsulate every toned coin (AT or NT) with the assigned grade. If they feel the toning is in anyway questionable, they can place the term QT (questionable toning) on the slab and then let the market determine the price. I don't believe at all that a coin should just be labeled "GENUINE" because the TPG thinks the toning might be artificial. They don't know the source of the toning and the TPG's state that toning does not affect the grade of the coin. We know they don't follow this philosophy because we see rainbow toned coins market graded all the time. I agree mostly with Doug that any well done AT cannot be differentiated from NT, even by the leading experts in numismatics.
With regards to how many coin doctors routinely fool the TPG's, I don't think it is an extensive group. While I agree these doctors do exist and some are excellent at their trade, it is important to recognize that simply not submitting some of their coins because they know what the TPG's consider "market acceptable" should not raise their success rate. They still need to move the coins they didn't submit. Do you really feel that placing coins in a Raymond Wayte holder and storing it in an environment conducive to toning is AT? IMO, the numismatic community can't even agree what constitutes AT. Some think that improper storage is AT, others think it is related to intent, others think it must require a catalyst such as heat before it qualifies.
Trying to determine the originality of a coin's toning is pretty much a fool's errand IMO.
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