Rant about grading question posts

Discussion in 'Coin Chat' started by satootoko, Feb 26, 2007.

  1. satootoko

    satootoko Retired

    If a coin's grade is a matter of opinion (and is there anyone who disagrees with that assessment) what's the point of all these "Guess the grade" postings?

    When I give my opinion of a coin's grade, I am doing exactly that, not guessing at some immutably fixed "accurate" grade!

    If the question is really "Guess what grade TPG X assigned this coin?" why not ask it that way?

    If the question is really "What is the absolutely correct grade for this coin?", then it's a nonsensical question, undeserving of an answer.

    Anyhow, that's what I'm [​IMG].
     
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  3. Bonedigger

    Bonedigger New Member

    Chuckle, in somewhat of a paralell to this discussion, I'd like to add this. I'm happy with every grade of every graded coin I have. Hows that, you may wonder? Because I've graded them all myself. If (when I acquire a coin) they're in a slab or flip and I don't agree with the grade, CRACK-OUT...... Problem solved :) :whistle: :) I'm not trying to pawn off over graded coins to the unsuspecting either. It's simply enjoyment and a pastime for me. All of my pieces are for personal pleasure.

    Of course you may handle the situation differently :D :D :D :D

    Take Care and Enjoy the Hobby
    Ben
     
  4. Cloudsweeper99

    Cloudsweeper99 Treasure Hunter

    You are correct, of course. Grading isn't a science, where the result can be repeated in a consistant manner across time and space. So what we are really doing is trying to guess what the current group consensus opinion will be, or the opinion of a group of people at a TPG.

    This makes the effort similar to watching a beauty contest on TV, where the viewer is trying to guess who the judges will think is the prettiest, and not necessarily who the viewer thinks is the prettiest.

    The effort is sort of trying to figure out what the common opinion is about what the common opinion will be. And now I'm really starting to get confused thinking about all of this!?!?!
     
  5. Shortgapbob

    Shortgapbob Emerging Numismatist

    I think the "guess the grade" threads are good for practice and discussion. The point brought up here is interesting because often times we discuss our agreements and disagreements with TPGs, and whether or not they are grading loosely or tightly at a certain time.

    When I am answering these questions, I sometimes make note of the grade I think a coin is and what I think the particular TPG may have assigned it. To understand the market, I think it is important both to be able to grade well on your own and to be able to understand how TPGs are grading coins according to market standards.
     
  6. acanthite

    acanthite ALIIS DIVES

    I enjoy 'guess the grade' threads. Not because I think a person will be able to hang their hat on the median opinion, but because I want to see how other people viewed the coin in comparison with myself, given that many members here have graded coins for years and see details that escape me. I make a point of not reading other opinions until I've reached a conclusion.

    In short, the excercise tells me about my grading precision on cointalk, not about the mythical quantity called accuracy.
     
  7. Speedy

    Speedy Researching Coins Supporter

    I think the big thing with grading coins in person or through photos is that it teaches Market Grading.
    Now I'm not going to get off on that topic right now---but when we come right down to it we all use Market Grading---and we all need to keep up on that.
    Learning to grade is an Art---and it takes time and many many hours of looking and grading coins.

    Speedy
     
  8. GDJMSP

    GDJMSP Numismatist Moderator


    I knew I smelled sumthin :p :D

    On a serious note, I think guess the grade threads are fun. And at the same time they are educational. It doesn't really matter the consensus grade is - what matters is what you can learn from the posts and comments in the thread. For if you will file away all those little tidbits and comments about the luster, the marks or lack thereof, the quality of strike, the wear on given areas of the design - all of these things will be helpful to each and every one of us in the future.

    Many, many times I have said to read every single thing you can about grading. You can't get it all from any single book, and you certainly can't get it all from any on-line coin forum. But you can get bits and pieces. And at some point in time all of those bits and pieces will coalesce in your mind and the light bulb will come on. All of a sudden you will begin to understand grading. And once you understand, from there on it's just a matter of gaining additional bits of info that pertain to particular issues - like O mint Morgans or the early '40s S mint Walkers for example. And after that it's just practice, practice, practice.

    Yes, grading does take years to learn to do correctly. But if you don't pick up the bits and pieces along the way you'll never learn. So read it all, listen to it all - it doesn't matter whether it's wrong or right, listen anyway. Soon enough you'll sort out the wheat from the chaff and you'll retain the wheat.

    So keep 'em comin - post away. Who knows, we might all learn something ;)
     
  9. AdamL

    AdamL Likes Silver

    Its all about learning and discussion for me. And I certainly have alot to learn. I post threads like those from time to time. But when I do, they are actually raw coins from my collection, and I want to see the opinions of other people and compare them with my own previous opinions on the grade of one of my coins.
     
  10. srkjkd

    srkjkd Book before coin

    i agree...fun and educational. the more you practice, the better you get. it is especially useful here on a forum as a teaching and analyzation tool. when you consider the experience of many of you senior numismatists...you hace an invaluable amount of knowledge to share. better yet, to teach others the practical application of the knowledge. i believe there are many in the background who may not post, but are reading and trying to absorb the material available on this forum. just my own opinion..i certainly learn a lot here.
     
  11. Indianhead65

    Indianhead65 Well-Known Member

    I also enjoy the "guess the grade" posts. I think grading coins is something you can practice your whole lifetime and still have some left to learn.
     
  12. satootoko

    satootoko Retired

    Obviously I didn't succeed in my attempt to make it clear the my gripe is with the implicit statement that there is some absolutely correct grade for each coin, by using the term "guess the grade"; not with the idea of looking for consensus.

    I am not saying the threads should stop, only that the word "guess" is inappropriate.
     
  13. AdamL

    AdamL Likes Silver

    Oh. Well, that makes sense. I always thought the use of the word guess in those threads was a little strange.
     
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