VERY strange 2018-P Jim Thorpe dollar minting error

Discussion in 'Error Coins' started by Howard Black, Mar 14, 2019.

  1. Howard Black

    Howard Black Member

    A while ago, we bought a $100 bag of the Jim Thorpe dollars from the U.S. Mint. I put them all into 2x2s and wrote some identifying info on each 2x2, but they stayed in the drawer since then -- my health is very poor, I've been in and out of hospitals so much that I've lost count, and pretty much everything has slid to the back burner.

    The other day I decided it was time to grit my teeth and start listing them on fleabay. I also decided that I should mark them as to "regular" (clockwise from obverse) or "inverted" edge text.

    Fortunately, I'd put them into half-dollar sized 2x2 holders so that buyers could look in and see the edge text, which enabled me to examine each coin without removing from the 2x2.

    In the process of doing this, I found one coin with a "mistake" the likes of which I've never seen (either in real life, or in online images).

    On the edge -- at each of the cardinal directions -- there was a very dramatic gouge. If not for this coin having come straight out of a sealed Mint bag I'd have thought it to be some strange intentional sort of PMD.

    But it's even stranger than the fact that it happened in the Mint.

    When I examined it, it became obvious that the damage was inflicted during the minting process. The gouges occurred after the coin was struck, but before the lettering was pressed into the edge.

    Some of the gouging totally obliterated the area where the edge text would have been stamped. But, in an area where the gouging wasn't deep enough to obliterate the metal, the text was stamped over the gouging (an impossibility if the gouging was inflicted after the edge lettering was applied).

    I have no idea how this could have happened. I had given some thought to it being feeder finger damage, but the way it's located in those four locations doesn't seem consistent with that. (Or does it?)

    One thing that isn't that obvious in the photos is the nature of the gouges, i.e., it looks like each one was made in one very forceful stroke, made in one direction (there is a clear difference between the "entry wound" and the "exit wound," with raised (coin) metal on the exit side).

    Also, although the cutting extends from the obverse to reverse sides of the edge, it is much deeper in "roughly" the center, leaving two flange-like portions. This is easier to see with the naked eye, but it is visible in the photos. I put "roughly" in scare-quotes because it's not a case of the middle layer of the sandwich behaving differently from the outer layers. This is evident because the deeper parts of the cuts are not precisely and evenly restricted to the coin's core layer.

    I hope to be able to post some better photos shortly, but the ones attached to this post are clear enough to confirm the above.

    If anyone has any clue as to what happened to this coin, or what effect it might have on the value, please don't hesitate to reply.

    2018-P Jim Thorpe Dollar - edge error-01.jpg
    2018-P Jim Thorpe Dollar - edge error-02.jpg
    2018-P Jim Thorpe Dollar - edge error-03.jpg
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2019
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  3. cpm9ball

    cpm9ball Cannot Re-Member

    As I was reading your text, I was imagining that it might be a strikethrough, but after seeing the images, I really don't know.

  4. Kasia

    Kasia Got my learning hat on

    Not sure of the cause on the coin but the italics in your story are annoying. I'm sure of that.
  5. Collecting Nut

    Collecting Nut Borderline Hoarder

    The only thing I can think of is that it is a very small clip. After going through the minting process both sides of the coin were pushed outward leaving the rim with a flat looking appearance, be it ever so small? In reality, I don't know. I am only speculating based on a photo and your description.
  6. Howard Black

    Howard Black Member

    There are FOUR fairly deep gouges, at the four cardinal positions (NSEW). Some of the edge lettering is OVER the scrapes. They start as a scrape, then progress to a deep gouge in the center, leaving two "flanges" on either side (obe/rev), and then thin out to scrapes on the far side of the gouge.

    Edited to add: Definitely not a clip. I have some clipped coins, they're nothing like this. This is four equidistant fairly deep gouges, which were made before the edge lettering was applied -- this is evident because of lettering that is stamped INTO the scrape marks (the gouging is progressive -- starts as scraping, progresses into a "scooped" out gouge, and then some scraping.

    If not for two things, I would think it to be PMD -- those two things:
    1. I got it out of a bag that was sewed shut at the U.S. Mint.
    2. Some lettering is placed where the metal is removed, and the letters are nice and clean, stamped into the scraped metal.
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2019
  7. Howard Black

    Howard Black Member

    Golly! My italics triggered you? How bold of you to speak out!

    Oh, you poor thing. Life must be terribly hard. I tell you what. Why don't you take a number, and sue me.
  8. CoinCorgi

    CoinCorgi Derp, derp, derp!

  9. CoinCorgi

    CoinCorgi Derp, derp, derp!

  10. Howard Black

    Howard Black Member

    I'm thinking I may have to break down and actually send this in to a TPG (it would be my first; I collect coins, not slabs).
  11. Hommer

    Hommer Curator of Semi Precious Coinage Supporter

    My thoughts are strike through also, if you can call it that. The second photo, to my eyes, lends evidence of a possible finned rim folded back over the edge and the lettering pressed through it. I'm not sure how the edge lettering machines work or how the coins are/were loaded into it. Maybe @Conder101 or @Fred Weinberg can shed light on that theory.
  12. Kasia

    Kasia Got my learning hat on

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  13. Howard Black

    Howard Black Member

    Nope, definitely not a strikethrough. I've got enough of them within three feet of where I'm sitting to be able to tell. There is a nontrivial amount of metal that was very forcibly gouged out of four equidistant locations on the edge. The two "flanges" visible in the photos are simply what remained after the metal in between was gouged out.

    If I had not personally opened that sealed Mint bag -- and, did not see that there was lettering pressed into the scraped area -- nice, clean lettering -- I'd have thought that some jerk had taken a Dremel with a thin cut-off wheel to it. (Except that a Dremel with a thin cut-off wheel will make a fairly clean "scoop" out of the edge. Whatever made these cuts was brutal! It's like it was done with a jagged piece of tool steel that was forced across the edge -- four times -- in a hydraulic press.)

    I've seen a lot of coins. I've probably seen more PMD coins than most "man on the street" types have seen of coins, period. But I've never seen anything like this! Not with a coin I've seen with my own eyes, or in an online photo.

    I'd really like to know what's the deal! (And, of course, if there's any value attached.)
  14. Howard Black

    Howard Black Member

    PS: The surfaces of the coin are no different from the 99 others that were in the bag. If not for my having decided to segregate the coins by the direction of the edge lettering, I'd never have noticed this. So, whatever it was that did this, it didn't cause any related artifacts on either side of the coin.
  15. paddyman98

    paddyman98 No Common Cents! Supporter

    Just a Defective Planchet, a flaw.. IMHO
    Nothing major :yawn:
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  16. Howard Black

    Howard Black Member

    Well, OK, I'll go with that for argument's sake.

    Now tell me how "a" planchet could endure such a brutal insult -- with zero impact to any other coin in the bag, or, any other part of the coin (i.e., the obv/rev surfaces).

    PS: I realize the legend under my nom de guerre says "New Member," and therefore, by definition, I am an ignoramus, who couldn't tell some finning from a MAD die clash, so I'll go out of my way to be tolerant and understanding of your perspective.

    Don't feel bad. A couple of hours ago, in a popular venue located in a different corner of The Global Interweb (It's not a big truck, it's a series of tubes!), I was in the space of less than thirty seconds decreed to be lying (by more than one), "informed" that it was PMD (how can it be Post Mint Damage when it was done IN the Mint? And for that matter, how could PMD manage to slip in under the edge lettering?), as well as being accused of having taken a Dremel to it.

    Wowie, wowie zowie! (Apologies to the late Frank Zappa.)

    It's eggs-ackley this flavor of hipshot hostility that is the reason I quit using my real name in public fora a couple of decades ago, when my name appeared on the cover of a book (by which I mean a book printed on dead tree fragments by a mainstream publisher -- not some self-published vanity job).

    I was reeling! I never expected it. Then I saw the same thing happening to other authors, and eventually I caught the clue (not soon enough to prevent one nimrod from researching what he thought was my home address (thank God for domain registry glitches!) -- and then urged people to seek me out and teach me a lesson.

    When it comes around to thinly veiled threats of that nature, well, I have other things to do, so long, have a nice day, I'm outta there. (And no, late as my cluehood may have been, it took, and it took real solid -- so, no, I did not correct Mr. Angry!)

    Ever wonder why there are so few public figures online? Guess what? They are online! But they use a nom de guerre -- or, in the relatively rare instances where they use their real names, they do so in venues where they and they alone hold the keys. "Read-only" web presence, or, if comments allowed, they're heavily moderated.

    But I digress. It may be "nothing major" (your emphasis dismissed) -- but, this ain't my first rodeo, and I tend to doubt that it's "just a defective planchet" (a defect mode which has apparently never occurred prior to this instance), or any of the other ex cathedra solutions proffered in the couple of places I made enquiry.

    Unlike my self-styled betters (i.e., those who post sans the "New Member" stigma), I've actually held it in my own hands, and examined it with my own eyes -- assisted by a strong, multi-element, highly corrected loupe, rather than via a tightly cropped digital image (my 55/3.5 Micro Nikkor is sharp enough to [insert metaphor of choice], but, not at the moment having a stage suitable to hold the coin at the optimum angle, I was reduced to holding it in my hand. Thus, even though the camera was mounted on a stand... well, you get the picture (pun intended).

    My point, not to put too fine a point on it, is that I know things about this coin that you'll never know (unless of course you purchase it from me).

    PS: See that '74-D JFK DDO to the left of this message? I went through similar sturm und drang over that coin too. Days of being accused of dishonesty and ignorance, until I finally managed to provide a photo that showed the spread, the split serifs, and the separation lines (go ahead, click on it -- then, when you get the larger version, zoom in on it, and you'll see them too.)

    The response? Did the taunts persist? Nope! Did I get even a single, "Gee, sorry"? Nope!

    What did I get?


    And so, thanks to that -- and a few similar encounters -- it's bloody rare for me to slither out from under my rock to ask for ideas about a coin. And now, it's gonna be even rarer.

    (As an aside, I cannot help but wonder how many truly rare, truly unique, truly valuable coins were tossed into yon Coinstar, the owners being actual numismatic newbies, who, having supped at the table of "Check your change! They are out there and you can be the next one to find one," arrived at any of the numerous numismatic clubhausen, only to meekly sneak out the door, quietly muttering to themselves, "I feel like such an idiot! I am never going to make a fool of myself like that again!" -- and then straight to the Coinstar -- or, the tip jar at the lunch counter -- and henceforth, these grubby little metal discs will no longer be "coins," having reverted to their original station as "change."

    Yeah, I see great things in store for this hobby -- at least for those fortunate enough to pick up some rolls that were filled with the contents of those Coinstars.)

    As for me, I am utterly disinclined to fulfill Einstein's definition of insanity.

    So, in closing... Have A Nice Day!
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2019
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  17. paddyman98

    paddyman98 No Common Cents! Supporter

    Wow.. That's a lot of words.. Too distracting for me. Goodbye.
  18. Howard Black

    Howard Black Member

    Yeah, I know what you mean. Words are so boring. But take heart -- I edited it to fix some typos (being a retired author, I no longer have editors who are paid by my publisher to catch and fix them for me). And while I was already "under the hood," I took the opportunity to clarify and expand on some ideas. Oh, nooo! Even more words!

    Oh, the humanity!

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  19. Oldhoopster

    Oldhoopster It seemed like a good idea at the time.

    Since you said it came from a mint purchased bag, it Could be from a damaged collar, counting machine, feeding system,or planchet defect. It doesn't appear to be a major error. More along the lines of "cool factor" instead of anything valuable.

    You might try looking at error-ref or Wexler s Doubled Die site to see if you can determine where in the minting process this could have occurred.

    Also, you might want to skip the the long posts complaining about how poorly you were treated on other forums. It's fairly easy to tell the experience level of a new member by the numismatic content of their posts. Just sayin'
  20. Hommer

    Hommer Curator of Semi Precious Coinage Supporter

    I bailed out in the third paragraph. It's obvious that he is new here, or he would know that we are all expert incognito celebrities.
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  21. Kasia

    Kasia Got my learning hat on

    Oh, the humanatee.


    I think I need it.
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