Nickel help - how many steps?

Discussion in 'US Coins Forum' started by Joe Campbell, Jun 26, 2019.

  1. Joe Campbell

    Joe Campbell Active Member

    You guys have me looking at collecting differently than I have to date. I bought some raw nickels on eBay and I like to get opinions on the number of steps they're showing. I have my own thoughts but would like feedback before sharing. I don't normally collect higher conditions coins and am looking to learn cheaply so that's where I'm at. I paid ~$10-11 for 2 x '43-P, a '39-P and a '40-D. I've attached pictures of the steps from one of the '43-P's, the '40-D and the '39-P. Also the '40-D has some spotting. Is that at all correctable? Thoughts are appreciated. IMG_4657.JPG IMG_4658.JPG IMG_4660.JPG IMG_4661.JPG IMG_4662.JPG
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  3. Lehigh96

    Lehigh96 Toning Enthusiast

    I don’t know which closeup goes with which date/mm so I will just refer to them as closeup #1, #2, & #3

    Closeup #1: There is bridging under the 3rd pillar that will preclude full steps. This is the most common area of weakness and typical of a near FS coin.

    Closeup #2: This coin has 5FS

    Closeup #3: This one has a mark that interrupts the 4th & 5th steps above the gap between the C & E in MONTICELLO. It’s a shame, this one was actually close to being 6FS. Based on my knowledge of the date/mm you listed, I’m gonna guess that this coin is the 40-D.
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  4. Joe Campbell

    Joe Campbell Active Member

    Good call Lehigh, the 3rd picture is the 40-D. The 1st close up is the '43-P and the 2nd is the '39-P.
  5. Lehigh96

    Lehigh96 Toning Enthusiast

    I don’t want you to get too excited because your photos aren’t great, but based on what I see, you have a premium gem full step 1939 Rev of 40 Jefferson Nickel. Greysheet is $60 in MS66 FS and $165 in MS67 FS.
  6. Lehigh96

    Lehigh96 Toning Enthusiast

    Btw, you should give that 40-D an acetone bath in case that black stuff is organic instead of actual toning.
  7. Joe Campbell

    Joe Campbell Active Member

    Unfortunately I think it's corrosion / green stuff, not just crud on the coin. Will acetone help?

    On the '39 I'm glad you view it as a nice coin because it's really the reason I bought the lot. Normally I wouldn't have looked at it twice being such a common date but I thought the 2 war nickels are probably worth $4-5 bucks ($4 for the nicer one, $1 for the AU example), I thought the '39-D was probably worth at least $5 (would have assigned no value before exploring this site) and I figured the '40-D was a little screwed up but if mottling turned out to be toning instead of corrosion it would be a win as well.

    I attempted to take better pics of the '39 (which shows my guess on the steps also). Thanks for taking the time to comment.
    IMG_4663.JPG IMG_4664.JPG
  8. Lehigh96

    Lehigh96 Toning Enthusiast

    Yes, acetone might remove the green stuff, give it a try.

    It’s not a 39-D though, it’s a Philly coin. Based on your new photos, I still think it should grade premium gem FS. I can’t gauge the luster which would determine if it is MS66 or MS67.

    Btw, which one of the war nickels is AU? They both look uncirculated to me.
  9. Joe Campbell

    Joe Campbell Active Member

    They might be. When the steps look like that I've always assumed they were circulated but I think sometimes it's just a weak strike. I really struggle determining the difference but I guess I'm learning. My Jefferson knowledge is primarily as a coin roll hunter. As soon as I find a '43-D I'll have a complete set found in circulation. Several of them are really, really nice. Once I complete the set I'll post some pics.
  10. Lehigh96

    Lehigh96 Toning Enthusiast

    Lack of step detail is an indicator of incomplete strike but really has nothing to do with whether the coin is circulated or mint state. For example, here is a war Nickel with premium gem surfaces and absolutely no steps.


    I don’t have the patience for CRHing. My new thing is to buy uncirculated sets trying to get coins worthy of submission to NGC.
  11. Joe Campbell

    Joe Campbell Active Member

    Very interesting... I appreciate you taking the time to help me out here.

    On the CRH'ing front, I've had some fun finds but it's definitely not for everyone.
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