Has Grading Gone to Far?

Discussion in 'US Coins Forum' started by Long Beard, May 10, 2020.

  1. halfcent1793

    halfcent1793 Well-Known Member

    When we wrote the EAC Grading Guide, we could not find the specific antecedents to Sheldon's grades except the following: H.O Granberg, of the ANA's Committee on Classification, proposed a uniform standard for grading. Here, in full, is Granberg's report as published in The Numismatist, March, 1913.

    You may compare this to Sheldon's descriptions, which I posted earlier.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Avatar

    Guest User Guest



    to hide this ad.
  3. halfcent1793

    halfcent1793 Well-Known Member

    In the early copper arena, most experienced collectors don't care what the slab grade is. Heritage and Goldbergs list EAC grades along with the slab grade, and the coins generally sell at price ranges appropriate for the EAC grade.

    Studies have shown that TPG grades of early copper are wildly inconsistent. Comparable quality coins can be graded 20 or more points differently. You can find the data in the the Grading Guide for Early American Copper Coins.

    I believe that the main reason TPGs aren't good at grading early copper coins is that they are used to things like Morgans and Saints that were produced by completely different technologies. I think the professionals who started PCGS and NGC were aware of these issues, but none of them are still associated with the company, and the graders they have now do not understand coins struck on a screw press.

    My magic wand would wave collectors into taking an interest in the history and quality of their COiNS rather than the number on the slip of paper inside the plastic that also includes that round thingy.
     
    wxcoin likes this.
  4. Insider

    Insider Talent on loan from...

    Thanks, I'll look it over.
     
    Kentucky and halfcent1793 like this.
  5. Chiefbullsit

    Chiefbullsit CRAZY HORSE

  6. wxcoin

    wxcoin Getting no respect for 64 years

    You can put your Michael Jordan first basket commemorative slabs in it.
     
  7. physics-fan3.14

    physics-fan3.14 You got any more of them.... prooflikes? Supporter

    Thanks! As a student of the history of numismatics, this is extremely interesting.
     
  8. Publius2

    Publius2 Well-Known Member

    Jason, received your book yesterday and spent a couple of pleasant hours reading it last night. Not only did I enjoy your perspective, I thought it was clearly written with plain prose and told me a lot I didn't know or corrected what I thought I knew. I wish I'd had this book two years ago.

    In a week or so, I will read it again to pick up what I missed or didn't give enough attention to the first time around.

    Nice job, one engineer and collector to another.
     
    micbraun and physics-fan3.14 like this.
  9. physics-fan3.14

    physics-fan3.14 You got any more of them.... prooflikes? Supporter

    I always like hearing people enjoyed my book. Thanks!
     
  10. Insider

    Insider Talent on loan from...

    I like your book.

    IMHO, Granberg did not even come close. BTW, anyone who wants to get a bellyful of just about every published proposal for describing the condition of coins up to 1976 may wish to borrow a copy of: Grading Coins: A Collection of Readings by Richard Bagg & James Jelinski. The Granberg article is included. It will blow your mind how far grading has evolved from the days of "NO TRACE OF WEAR." It is VERY UNFORTUNATE that the geniuses who wrote the ANA Grading Guide didn't read it first.

    PS I like the EAC Grading guide also. Unfortunately, you guys :bookworm: went far off into the land of confusion :wacky::confused: to develop the "Make-up-your-own-grade-depending-on-what-bothers-you-NET GRADING system." :stinkyfeet: :vomit:
     
    halfcent1793 likes this.
  11. wxcoin

    wxcoin Getting no respect for 64 years

    I bought your book a few months ago and enjoyed reading it. Hopefully you got enough in royalties to buy a new Zincoln:)
     
  12. physics-fan3.14

    physics-fan3.14 You got any more of them.... prooflikes? Supporter

    I'm at almost 600 copies sold, so a bit better than a Zincoln.

    In talking with numismatic authors, that number is actually fairly impressive (especially since when I published, I was expecting maybe 50-100 copies!).
     
    Kentucky and wxcoin like this.
  13. halfcent1793

    halfcent1793 Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the compliment. The book did very well for the club. We were proud of it, and it did win the NLG Book of the Year award.

    I don't think it's quite as Wild West as you seem to think, but you're not completely wrong. Of course, the reason for the net grading was that early coppers, unlike most everything else, was the money of the people, so the cents, in particular, being large, heavy and soft, got banged around and suffered lots of insults that affect the desirability of a coin, if not its sharpness.

    Think of the net grade as the effect of eye appeal, and you're most of the way there.

    I once wrote an article for Penny-Wise on "Why I hate EAC grading." That was several years before I co-wrote the book. In it I quote Scott Schechter of CCG as follows: "Efforts to introduce third-party grading systems for net graded coins more closely resemble an appraisal evaluation rather than a true assessment of condition."

    But that is exactly what commercial grading is. A system where grade must equal price. I.e., an appraisal evaluation.
     
    Insider likes this.
  14. Razz

    Razz Critical Thinker

    This seems to me to be the sticking point. If the TPGs would just put a date on the slab that the coin was appraised...er graded...then that would solve a lot if problems. One of the first things on antique roadshow that the appraiser asks is if they have had the object appraised. When and how much then comes up. Then they say well the market has gone up, down or stayed the same since that date. But I guess that would remove too many coins from the re-grading game.
     
  15. baseball21

    baseball21 Well-Known Member

    If you are using reality TV as a basis for anything but entertainment......
     
    thomas mozzillo likes this.
  16. Razz

    Razz Critical Thinker

    The concept you big galoot.

    Edit: and I mean that in an endearing kind of way. :)
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2020 at 3:19 PM
  17. Insider

    Insider Talent on loan from...

    halfcent1793, posted: "Thanks for the compliment. The book did very well for the club. We were proud of it, and it did win the NLG Book of the Year award.

    I don't think it's quite as Wild West as you seem to think, but you're not completely wrong. Of course, the reason for the net grading was that early coppers, unlike most everything else, was the money of the people, so the cents, in particular, being large, heavy and soft, got banged around and suffered lots of insults that affect the desirability of a coin, if not its sharpness.

    Think of the net grade as the effect of eye appeal, and you're most of the way there.

    I once wrote an article for Penny-Wise on "Why I hate EAC grading." That was several years before I co-wrote the book. In it I quote Scott Schechter of CCG as follows: "Efforts to introduce third-party grading systems for net graded coins more closely resemble an appraisal evaluation rather than a true assessment of condition."

    But that is exactly what commercial grading is. A system where grade must equal price. I.e., an appraisal evaluation."

    Very well stated. I may have to steal it sometime.

    BTW, I went EASY on the book. it is terrific and should be in every coin dealers library! When I heard it was being published I asked if I could explain the original and only true technical grading system I devised for identifying coins. Unfortunately, I dropped the ball.

    As you must know, I am no fan of net grading. Even your book says it is very subjective among copper collectors and has no relationship to the grading done by most collectors and the TPGS's.

    Nevertheless, you have provided us with a simple explanation of how it came about to value a copper coin in the same way that commercial grading does for other types of coins.
     
    halfcent1793 likes this.
  18. halfcent1793

    halfcent1793 Well-Known Member

    In practice, we have a couple of gurus who provide net grades for coins in auctions: Mark Borckardt at Heritage and Bob Grellman at Goldbergs. Nobody at Stacks-Bowers does it, so you're on your own with them.

    The net grades that Mark and Bob assign tend to become fixed to that particular coin. Ditto for the net grades assigned many years ago by Del Bland and others even earlier to early cents.

    So a lot of coins, particularly nicer and/or more desirable examples, have net grades that pretty much everyone abides by.
     
  19. St Gaudens collector

    St Gaudens collector Active Member

    Now that PCGS is tight, I'm looking for more fresh stuff to just miss the "jump-grade".
    Also, It seems upgrades have to get a sigh-off from New Jersey 1st.

    I guess all this means is that the market is changing a little bit and it might be an opportunity for me & my very narrow focus.
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2020 at 12:08 PM
  20. Insider

    Insider Talent on loan from...

    I find that hard to believe. The copper guys may agree on the assigned grade as NET = Lower (ALWAYS) but the TPGS's don't. I especially liked reading in the EAC Grading Guide about the auction cats that show a TPGS slab graded "such-and-such" with the comment that is is actually an EAC (lower grade) "such-and-such."
     
  21. Insider

    Insider Talent on loan from...

    halfcent1793, posed: "In the early copper arena, most experienced collectors don't care what the slab grade is. [No experienced collector should care about the slab grade!!] Heritage and Goldbergs list EAC grades along with the slab grade, and the coins generally sell at price ranges appropriate for the EAC grade.

    Studies have shown that TPG grades of early copper are wildly inconsistent. Comparable quality coins can be graded 20 or more points differently. You can find the data in the the Grading Guide for Early American Copper Coins.

    I believe that the main reason TPGs aren't good at grading early copper coins is that they are used to things like Morgans and Saints that were produced by completely different technologies. I think the professionals who started PCGS and NGC were aware of these issues, but none of them are still associated with the company, and the graders they have now do not understand coins struck on a screw press. [This is NOT true. At least one of the top services, NGC, has a long time serving professional staff. I do agree that there are a small number of professionals that can properly grade a colonial coin. IMO, they can value them but they cannot grade them with regard to their ACTUAL condition of preservation due mostly to the way they were made.]
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2020 at 3:31 PM
    Kentucky likes this.
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page