OMG I need help!

Discussion in 'US Coins Forum' started by Localyokel, Jan 25, 2010.

  1. Localyokel

    Localyokel Junior Member

    I'm in a panic mode right now. I've been a collector of US coins mostly Peace Dollars on and off for about 15 years. I go to area shows and surf the net and yes, Ebay. I've read the PCGS guide to grading and counterfeit detection (Bowers), The Coin Collectors survival manual 4th and 6th editions (Travers), the ANA Grading standards for US coins 6th edition(Bresset), The Official Red Book Guide book of Peace Dollars (Budette), I use my Greysheets religiously when purchasing coins. In short, I've learned some things, or thought I had. That's a little about me.

    I finally decided that I would send in a group of coins to get certified and included a few I wasn't sure about just for educational purposes. I sent them to ANACS as they had a special going and finally got the report via Email of what they determined:

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]1921-AU 55[/FONT]
    1926D AU 58
    1926S MS 62
    1927 MS Details
    1927 AU58
    1927 AU58 Details
    1927D AU 58
    1927 S au 55
    1934 AU 58
    1934D AU 58 Details
    1934 S EF45 Details
    1935 AU 58
    1935S au 58 details

    These are my notes from the coins having looked at some of them many times over the years:
    1921 AU
    1926D MS 64
    1926S MS 63
    1927 MS 60 ? slider
    1927 MS 63
    1927 MS 63
    1927D MS 64
    1927S MS 60
    1934 MS 64
    1934D MS 63- PVC damage?- Acetone treated
    1934S XF 45
    1935 MS 64
    1935S MS 63 - improperly cleaned?

    You can imagine how I must feel right now. I acquired these coins over the years from various sources. I will be getting them back on Wednesday but not being very good at posting pics (and having the motivation to learn knocked out of me) I may not post them.
    If any of you guys could offer some insight, I would be deeply grateful. I love this hobby, but if I've just lost well over a thousand dollars on coins then the hobby doesn't love me.
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  3. JeromeLS

    JeromeLS Coin Fanatic

    Well, you haven't really lost "well over a thousand dollars". Remember that: you didn't buy the coins as an investment, you bought them because they bring you enjoyment. And you don't really lose money on coins until you sell them. If you've really been collecting them over many years, the value will appreciate.

    As for your grading, you seem to overestimate the grades of uncirculated coins. This is quite natural- uncirculated coins can be difficult to grade, especially relatively modern coins such as the peace dollars. I would recommend using a fine magnifying glass or loupe, and scrutinizing the coin for slight wear, bag marks and the like. It takes a lot of practise - I've been collecting for a relatively short amount of time and find it very difficult to grade MS coins accurately. Remember though, you bought the coins, not the grades - if the coins are attractive to you, that's more important than the number on the slab.

    I wouldn't be discouraged: your coins are all real, they're all undamaged (despite your worries). If you have genuinely lost money on this, then it may well be a learning experience. If you buy raw coins, you rely on your own grading skills. If you buy slabbed coins, you are more secure. I personally don't collect slabbed pieces, because I'm into much earlier issues, but it's a safer way to go if you're not totally confident in your own ability.

    I hope this is helpful advice.
  4. WashQuartJesse

    WashQuartJesse Member Supporter

    I'm very sorry this happened to you. Sounds like you were buying these coins at a discount though. Collectors buying at greysheet usually end up with lower quality than expected.
  5. Localyokel

    Localyokel Junior Member

    I use a loupe and compare my slabbed coins with the raw ones. So do the people I buy them from. It seems very hard to believe all the coins were mistakenly graded.
  6. silvrluvr

    silvrluvr Senior Member

    Sounds like the types of coins that the full-page ad dealers sell as choice, select or gem BU. Buy your coins already graded by PCGS or NGC until you learn more about grading. The more coins of known grades that you look at, the more experienced and proficient you will become. Try to do a bit of learning each day and before you know it, you'll be the Pro!
  7. Localyokel

    Localyokel Junior Member

    I appreciate the advice and condolences. I thought I had a decent grasp on coin grading. The above coins were acquired at shows and from various dealers/ sellers. I was hoping the problem was ANACS. Seriously, what are the chances of me picking up all these AU 58s over the years?
  8. WashQuartJesse

    WashQuartJesse Member Supporter

    I guess what I'm saying can be summarized by the following encounter at a show. The guy next to me was heckling the dealer because his cent was priced at $16 firm when his sheet said it should have been at $12. The guy really liked the coin, knew it was a strong grade, but passed on it because it was "too much." The dealer's coins always grade within a point.

    I think if you paid strong prices your coins would have been, to a higher degree, strong grades. This is the impression I get from your post. The grades are just way too off.
  9. wiggam007

    wiggam007 Cut-Rate Parasite

    I'll venture a guess and say that what happened was that you were ignoring some slight wear because of how the rest of the coin looked. Many people on here will note that an AU-58 coin can look better than low end MS coins because the MS coins are allowed to have bag marks etc that can make them undesirable while the only thing holding a high end AU coin back is slight wear on the high points. The reason I think this is because the majority of the AU coins you graded 63-64 suggesting that the coin looks pretty amazing, but the AU grade would have been handed out because of that wear.

    I hope you decide to post some pictures because that will help the forum members who collect Peace Dollars to see why the grades were so off.
  10. silvrluvr

    silvrluvr Senior Member

    Seeing as how ANACS graded all of your coins, they may not even crossover to the same grades if submitted to NGC or PCGS, and they certainly won't sell for as high of prices.
  11. Localyokel

    Localyokel Junior Member

    Thanks silvr, I hadn't thought of that:headbang:
  12. Localyokel

    Localyokel Junior Member

    I had considered that possibility. This would still lead me to conclude that there are alot of dealers out there writing MS63 (and pricing them accordingly) on sliders or getting duped themselves. I know I am not an expert but I've been intesely studying this series of coin for some time. I've heard that if you send in some body bag material that sometimes the graders regard the rest of your coins as suspicious. Has anyone any experiences regarding this?

    I'll try to upload pics soon for everyone's benefit.
  13. jerseycat10

    jerseycat10 Peace Dollar Connoisseur

    Damn. I am about to send in 5 Peace Dollars to NGC. 3 of them were bought from those 1 page ad dealers, and I am concerned they will meet the same fate your coins did.

    The other 2 I originally broke out of NGC MS-63 slabs, and now I want to put them back in.
  14. borgovan

    borgovan Supporter**

    It does sound like you've done your research from textbooks, but often that's not enough. There's theory, and then there's application. I can study the pictures in the book, and with enough memorization, do blind gradings of the pictures and get every one right every single time.

    Contrast that with having coins in hand. Every coin is unique. Grading coins is an art. You not only must have a dealer you trust, but you must be able to grade the coin properly yourself. It seems you did fine with the theory, but need a little more practice with the application.

    It sounds like you are just a casual collector. But, if you want to get more serious, consider attending a grading course at a statewide, or national, coin show. That way you can learn in person. Go to coin shows and look at slabbed examples from the top companies, and study as many coins as you can get your hands on.

    Even experts are going to make a miss here or there, but you can greatly minimize your chances of getting taken if you have more experience. Applicable to all of life, but especially so to the field of numismatics, is the saying "Knowledge is power."
  15. majorbigtime

    majorbigtime New Member

    If you buy 'em raw, you better know what you are doing.

    Lesion learned!

    Live and learn--consider it an educational experience.
  16. fretboard

    fretboard Defender of Old Coinage!

    Expensive lesson to learn for sure but as someone already mentioned, you haven't lost anything until you sell. Hopefully it's not as bad as it seems. The text books and especially the Greysheet and the Red Book are to be used as a guide or learning tools only. Guides are only a small part and often just glanced at for informational purposes. My guess is most ppl just look at these, and if they truly want a coin then they buy it . I'm sure you will do better next time. As far as ANACS goes, IMO they are just as good as PCGS or NGC. I may get flak for saying that but the coin is only as good as it is. In other words, it doesn't matter if it's a Peace dollar graded by PCGS as a MS64, if you don't like something about it then you're not gonna buy it. Simple math says: Buy the coin, not the slab or slabber. Better buying habits next time for certain, so in that regard I don't think you did too bad. :hail:
  17. Localyokel

    Localyokel Junior Member

    There appears to be a common theme amongst the replies above and that is this: I don't know a MS coin from an AU and that I was ripped off by 12 out of thirteen purchases. Not only that but on the thriteenth I couldn't tell an MS 62 from an MS 64.

    I know you all don't know me and therefore ANACS has more credibility. However; I have viewed many Peace dollars over the years at coin shows, books, from pictures and from my own collection which includes 11 MS examples. My local coin dealers don't know Peace dollars as well as I do. I chose a single coin to specialize in BECAUSE I only do it part time, not in spite of it. I own 64 of them in various grades. I don't think of myself as an expert but neither did I just fall off the turnip truck.

    ANACS has a taken some hits rep recently. Is that just from OVER-grading?
  18. Localyokel

    Localyokel Junior Member

  19. green18

    green18 Unknown member Sweet on Commemorative Coins Supporter

    15 years in the hobby collecting what you like and someone puts up a sign the reads "wrong way". Finding out that coins you've bought from trusted dealers don't quite measure up to the grade assigned by a TPG'er.

    I'd be a little whacked out too Localyokel. The only solace I can offer is that you can at least be happy that the folks at ANAC's didn't say that your coins were Chinese fakes. Your collection is safe.
    I'm basically a "raw" guy and I buy my coins from so called trusted dealers, knowing in the back of my mind that the grade they assign a particular coin may not be what a "third party" would agree with. That's not what drives me. I could give a (censored) what the third party people think. I liked the coin....that's why I bought it. Don't get caught up in the third party "hype" and enjoy collecting what you like. :smile
  20. Art

    Art Numismatist?

    Out of your list you have 5 coins that received details grades. That's usually an indicator that the coins have been cleaned. Cleaning can be extremely difficult to diagnose. It's another skill like grading. Additionally I feel that grading MS coins is far more difficult to learn than grading circulated coins and therefore takes lots more hands on experience.

    If you lost money chalk it up to education and continue to enjoy the greatest hobby on earth.
  21. chip

    chip Novice collector

    Every so often someone will post some slab that the experts obviously messed up, and I do not only mean the subjective side of grading, I mean where they actually labeled the coin with the wrong year, maybe anacs graders had a collective bad day?
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