My Spidey Senses are Tingling

Discussion in 'Coin Chat' started by BIC, Oct 18, 2022.

  1. BIC

    BIC New Member

    My first post here. New to coin collecting, having started nine months ago. Try to buy what my wife and I like that also has some investment potential. We have several PCGS or NGC graded coins. We buy from a local brick & mortar as well as online auctions such as Heritage.

    Went to our first local coin show yesterday. I have noticed that most of the show dealers have few graded slab coins, most are packaged in paper flip holders, some with grades written on them.

    Many of these dealers say they don't bother with PCGS or NGC because they've sent the same coin in multiple times and gotten a different grade each time. The dealers claim they can grade coins better themselves. Also, most of these coins are under a few hundred dollars, making grading not economical.

    We saw one coin we are interested in, but the saying about a deal too good to be true may apply here. It is a 1907 $20 High Relief (appears to be a flat rim, but I'm not sure). It is in a slab from an unheard of grading service. Aside from their thin website, it appears no other collector on earth has ever mentioned them online. It shows MS-62 but the dealer said he thinks it's MS-60. Either way, if legit, it is a coin in the $15-25k range being sold for $10k.

    I would be willing to pay $10k if it's in a PCGS or NGC slab with an MS-60 or above. At a minimum, I have a concern about what appears to be a large carbon spot on the top edge (see picture). That might be a deal-killer to start.

    I find it unlikely somebody along the way would not have submitted it to PCGS or NGC. Before I would buy the coin, I would request the dealer submit it to PCGS or NGC and achieve the minimum of MS-60. Before making such a request, can somebody look at the photos and tell me if that's a reasonable goal, particularly with the worrisome carbon spots. Any other thoughts on this prospective purchase? My Spidey senses are tingling. Thanks.

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    -jeffB and paddyman98 like this.
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  3. charley

    charley Well-Known Member

    Welcome. Oh, and the $20 piece? Don't. You. Dare.

    The senses should be way past tingling. You are in need of a Neuro-Conduction Velocity Test.
    Kurisu and green18 like this.
  4. baseball21

    baseball21 Well-Known Member

    Your spidey senses are right. A 5 figure coin being raw or in a no name holder is there for a reason. There's no reason someone would try submitting that to PCGS or at least NGC. The likely answer is that it was and they didnt like the result

    Same with all the dealers saying they can grade better blah blah theyre just giving a sales pitch. On lower value coins the honest ones will just say its not worth the fee to submit at the price point, when you get the dog and pony show about why they dont or why they dont believe in them thats a huge red flag
  5. Maxfli

    Maxfli Well-Known Member

  6. Maxfli

    Maxfli Well-Known Member

    What kind of show was this? I've been attending coin shows (the local/regional kind, not the big national ones) for decades and there are always lots and lots of dealers with lots and lots of PCGS, NGC and ANACS slabbed coins.

    As baseball alluded to, there's a lot in this paragraph that should make you suspicious.
    Kurisu likes this.
  7. norantyki

    norantyki CoinMuncher

    If genuine (on which I do not wish to opine here), this coin has at least been previously mounted, and cleaned. It is at best a damaged coin in a no-name holder, and at worst an outright fake. I also would not net grade that anywhere near UNC.
  8. Omegaraptor

    Omegaraptor Gobrecht/Longacre Enthusiast

    Not UNC. Ex-jewelry. Possibly fake (many of these basement slabs have fakes in them). Don't walk, run.
    Mainebill likes this.
  9. BIC

    BIC New Member

    Regional show with about 80 dealers. I'd guess maybe 20% of all the coins were slabbed. There was an ANACS table. Probably should have seen what they were about, but didn't.

    Another interesting coin was a 1795 flowing hair silver dollar. Not slabbed, marked VF20 for $6,000 (roughly book value). Seems to me, this coin should be slabbed. I was looking at PCGS pictures. On the 2-leaf, if you look at the right 2-leaf, in the for sale version, the left leaf appears to cross over the right. In the PCGS photo, the right crosses over the left. I don't really understand the Silver Plug version.

    Another we liked was a 1849-O $1, MS-60 CAC in a PCGS Rattler for $2,000. Best I can tell, it's worth about $1,700-1,800, so we passed. I could still get these coins if we change our mind about them. Any thoughts on either of these? Thanks.

    20221015_152438 crop.jpg 20221015_152448 crop.jpg PCGS Two Leaves.jpg
  10. baseball21

    baseball21 Well-Known Member

    Smaller shows like that have some of the sketchiest things happen

    They were just there accepting submissions. They have people (who are not graders) go to as many shows as possible where you can submit through the show saving the shipping fee to them,

    It absolutely should be slabbed and theres a reason it isnt. One thing to realize too is that it can still be real and unslabbed or cracked out of a slab where the dealers are overgrading it or selling a details coin as straight graded
    Omegaraptor likes this.
  11. Omegaraptor

    Omegaraptor Gobrecht/Longacre Enthusiast

    Most likely is they’ve already sent it in and didn’t like what the TPGs thought, so they cracked it out. There are quite a few early US collectors who just don’t like slabs, but unless the dealer is highly reputable, big name, and specializes in Bust Dollars (few and far in between!), steer clear. (And of course if you’re paying $6k for a raw Bust Dollar you should have lots of experience with BDs too).
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2022
    Maxfli and baseball21 like this.
  12. Kentucky

    Kentucky Supporter! Supporter

    Welcome to CT. Mostly you can trust what people say here.
    Kurisu likes this.
  13. Publius2

    Publius2 Well-Known Member

    @BIC, you are getting excellent advice from members here. You should follow your instincts and run from these offerings. The next thing you should do, and it's obvious you've already started, is to educate yourself deeply in whatever coins you're interested in, especially if they are expensive. Buy books that specialize in the coins. The Red Book won't do it if you're trying to authenticate coins for yourself.

    For myself, I would never consider buying a raw coin for more than $500 and then only if it was a cherry pick in a series that I knew more about than the dealer. Any coin worth more than $300 or so and not in a holder you should be suspicious of, at least until you've been in the hobby longer.

    There's a dealer that shows up to my local and regional shows who has a lot of expensive coins that have not been slabbed, like early dollars, half dollars and the like. These coins show up again and again in his case for years. Do you wonder why?

    It appears that you have sufficient resources to purchase expensive coins. I suggest that you nurture a relationship with an established well-known dealer with the goal of leveraging his knowledge to acquire investment-level coins. Such dealers will often work with you to represent you at auctions and review possible coins for you at lot viewing to determine if they really meet your investing/collecting requirements.

    I know that's not as much fun as what you're doing now. But you said this is partly/primarily for investment purposes. So, you should approach it from an investment standpoint. That means really best-quality coins that carry the credibility required for eventual resale.

    Finally, if you are at a show with 80 dealers and only 20% of the coins on offer are slabbed, you are at the wrong show for your wants and needs. You need to be attending the large shows like the Baltimore Whitman, FUN in Orlando in January, Long Beach, etc.
    Vess1 and Kurisu like this.
  14. Publius2

    Publius2 Well-Known Member

    There is no 1849-O dollar. If the slab actually says 1849-O and you didn't just mis-type, then the slab and coin within are counterfeit.

    If you just mis-typed, the 1849 PCGS MS-60 CAC Seated Liberty dollar has a value posted in the CDN CAC Retail Value Price Guide of $3,440. The wholesale Greysheet dealer bid price (non-CAC) if $2,300. So, the price should make you suspicious. Most dealers will not leave hundreds or thousands on the table.

    For any PCGS, NGC, ICG or ANACS slab, you can go to their websites and enter the slab number and check to see if it exists. Ditto with a CAC coin for PCGS and NGC slabs. You should always do this before you even consider a coin. I do it always and I do mean always.
    Mainebill likes this.
  15. CoinCorgi

    CoinCorgi Tell your dog I said hi!

    Except @GDJMSP ;)
    Kentucky likes this.
  16. Omegaraptor

    Omegaraptor Gobrecht/Longacre Enthusiast

    There is an 1849-O dollar. They just didn't strike it in silver. ;)
    Mainebill and ToughCOINS like this.
  17. BIC

    BIC New Member

    @Publius2 , thanks for the detailed advice. We do have a local brick & mortar dealer we trust and have gotten some stuff from him, but he's relatively small with limited offerings for what we seek. What do we look for? Whatever strikes our fancy when we see it. And not overpriced. Fairly priced is OK, underpriced, even better.

    My wife likes mermaids, so we bought a 1915 $2.50 Pan-Pac MS-66 CAC at an online auction. When it arrived, I was shocked at the the microscopic size of it. Our local dealer recently got some Athens Owls in. Along with a sentimental tie to Greece, a cool looking coin---we bought one.

    The only specific coin we have been hunting for is a 1925 50c Lexington. A relatively inexpensive coin with sentimental value for my wife. Watched many sell for too much at Heritage Auctions. At the show this past weekend, found an unslabbed decent one for $80 and bought it. Later, found a better unslabbed one for $80 and bought that. If they turn out to not be worth $80 each, doesn't matter.
    ksparrow likes this.
  18. BIC

    BIC New Member

    Yes, what I wrote is correct, it's a gold dollar. I did check the certification with both PCGS & CAC. It's legit. PCGS type # is 7508 valued at $1,500. CDN CAC retail $1,580. Throw in the Rattler, and I'm guessing $1,700-1,800, not $2,000.
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2022
    Mainebill likes this.
  19. Publius2

    Publius2 Well-Known Member

    This 1795 dollar has the correct obverse and reverse die pairing for the BB-11 die marriage. It is the only variety with 16 berries on the reverse, which I confirmed. The obverse is the correct one for this reverse. Die marriage attribution is the first step in determining if a coin is genuine or counterfeit. Your coin passes this test. The other tests have more to do with experience in noting more esoteric clues such as surfaces, dentils, letter punches and other things that I am no good at. On the surface to me, it looks genuine.

    Forget about the left/right leaf crossing-you are comparing the wrong reverse die to your coin. This is why you need to have the books.

    You are correct that Greysheet lists this coin in VF-20 for $6000. But you have to remember that Greysheet values are for coins slabbed by the major TPGs such as PCGS and NGC and are wholesale average bid prices, not retail. Retail CDN price guide has a VF-20 at $7500. Raw coins and no-name slabbed coins, even if genuine, should sell for significant discounts. And remember, raw coins and no-names come with no guarantees of authenticity.

    You should absolutely question why this coin is not in a major TPG slab.
    Mainebill and Omegaraptor like this.
  20. Publius2

    Publius2 Well-Known Member

    I stand corrected.
  21. -jeffB

    -jeffB Greshams LEO Supporter

    This, this, this. You're asking the right questions, but unless five-figure impulse purchases just aren't that big a deal for you, you should look at a LOT more coins -- including slabbed ones -- before ramping up your buying.

    If these coins look attractive to you, but (a) they're being offered at a discount and (b) experienced dealers and collectors aren't snapping them up, it probably means those experienced dealers and collectors know something you don't. Yet.

    Welcome to CoinTalk!
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