What is a "Whizzed" Coin?

Discussion in 'Coin Chat' started by Cazkaboom, Dec 4, 2011.

  1. Cazkaboom

    Cazkaboom One for all, all for me.

    I have been doing a little reading on how "whizzed" coins are basically worthless, but don't know what a whizzed coin is. Help.

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  3. raider34

    raider34 Active Member

    Whizzing is done to simulate mint luster. It's done with some type of high speed too (like a dremel). What happens is the tool puts numerous scratches in the coin (similar to flow lines) which simulates the luster. Usually, whizzing is only done to the fields of the coin, but can be done over the devices too. A good whiz job can be hard to detect, and can fool a lot of people. The "giveaway" for a whized coin would be a build up of metal around the raised areas of the coin (this would be where the whizzing stopped).
    capthank likes this.
  4. dctjr80

    dctjr80 Senior Member

  5. Numismat

    Numismat World coin enthusiast

    In addition to what raider said, a really good whiz job requires high magnification to identify. A 5x or 10x loupe may not be enough, but even a fairly cheap microscope has enough magnification to see the difference. In this case the difference is very fine incuse marks in consistent , usually circular, direction (on the whizzed coins). A coin which genuine cartwheeling luster, or "bloom" may have die polish lines that can sometimes be confused for whizzing. However, die polish lines are nearly always straight and whizzing marks are usually not.
    On coins with original surfaces there may also be a halo effect, from metal flow that radiates from the center to the outside or vice versa. This will not be seen on whizzed coins.
    capthank likes this.
  6. Hobo

    Hobo Squirrel Hater

    This Large Cent has been whizzed. Note the unnatural appearance of the coin. Also note the the buildup of material beside the raised elements on the coin (e.g., numerals in the date, stars and Liberty).

    1849 Large Cent Obv Whizzed.jpg 1849 Large Cent Obv Whizzed CU1.jpg 1849 Large Cent Obv Whizzed CU2.jpg
  7. Numismat

    Numismat World coin enthusiast

    Buildup of material around the finer features is a good sign of cleaning by rubbing or whizzing in any case.
    Often this buildup is easier to see than marks on the surface or the luster itself. Photo doctoring has become very prevalent, but this is one sign that seems to be consistent.
  8. cpm9ball

    cpm9ball CANNOT RE-MEMBER

    The fine hairlines from whizzing don't necessarily have to be in a circular pattern. A fine brush or buffing (wheel) attachment on a drill can produce hairlines that are parallel to one another. These can be distinguished from die polishing because they remove surface metal leaving incuse striations where die polishing lines would be raised on the coin. The whizzing process will make a coin look shiny, but it destroys the luster. Luster is created by the (surface) flow lines of the metal when the coin is struck and the metal moves outward toward the rim. Whizzing removes the flow lines.

    Cheech9712, capthank, Marsden and 2 others like this.
  9. zekeguzz

    zekeguzz lmc freak

    Great example HOBO. This is what CoinTalk so great. Thank you very much.
    capthank likes this.
  10. ikandiggit

    ikandiggit Currency Error Collector

  11. GDJMSP

    GDJMSP Numismatist Moderator

    When you get right down to it die polish lines and whizzing lines both produce raised lines on the surface of the coin.

    Are the two types of lines different ? Absolutely ! But in that regard they are alike.

    The reason people get confused with this is because it is always said that a scratch or hairline creates an incuse line on the surface of the coin. While a die polish line is raised. And this is true.

    But what you have to remember is that die polish lines come in a series - a lot of raised lines, parallel to each other. And any time you have a series of raised lines parallel to each other you also have a corresponding series of depressions (low spots) in between those raised lines (high spots).

    Whizzing does exactly the same thing, it creates a series of raised lines, parallel to each other, with low spots in between.

    And luster itself is a series of raised lines with low spots in between. That is precisely why whizzing is used to simulate luster. It is also why it fools a lot of people.

    But there are very recognizable differences between these 3 different types of raised lines on a coin. As a collector you have to learn to distinguish one from the other.

    And once you do that then you have to learn that even scratches can create both raised and incuse lines on a coin. And that die scratches can create raised lines on a coin with corresponding low spots in between.

    What I'm trying to get across here is that there are a lot of different things that can cause raised lines on a coin. And they can be very deceiving at times.
  12. cpm9ball

    cpm9ball CANNOT RE-MEMBER

    I agree and I should have been more thorough in my explanation but I rushed through it.

    ldhair likes this.
  13. Lehigh96

    Lehigh96 Toning Enthusiast

    Thought I would resurrect this thread after photographing a whizzed coin this afternoon. It is an XF/AU 1894-O Morgan Dollar that someone whizzed in an attempt to pass it off as uncirculated. They did not do a particularly good job and even at a distance, the luster looks strange. Here are some photos of the coin.

    Even from over a foot away, something just doesn't look right.


    Closeup photo provides a better look at the simulated luster.


    A larger photo of the obverse gives us a better look.


    And finally a highly magnified look at the tell tale signs of whizzing on the obverse.


    For those who ask "why", consider that the 1894-O Morgan Dollar is a $200 coin in AU but jumps over $1,000 even in the lower mint state grades. A poorly whizzed coin like this will not fool an experienced numismatist or professional grader, but for those collectors who enjoy buying raw coins, it is very important that you be able to recognize a whizzed coin when you see one. I hope this post will others in that regard.

    capthank, Insider and JCro57 like this.
  14. Ripley

    Ripley Senior Member

    :foot-mouth: Extreme whizzzzzzzzzzz. [​IMG][​IMG]
  15. bkozak33

    bkozak33 Collector

    even with the whiz, it doesnt hide the wear. who would think that coin is uncirculated
    Xelevatorguy likes this.
  16. dsmith23

    dsmith23 Gotta get 'em all

    A non collector who decides to invest in coins, without doing any research.
  17. yakpoo

    yakpoo Member

    Looks familiar...

  18. yakpoo

    yakpoo Member

    It doesn't seem to make much sense to whiz circulated coins, but can this be done to smooth out unsightly bag marks without being noticed? In other words, turn and MS62 into an MS66?
  19. elijahhenry10

    elijahhenry10 New Member

    More like extreme belt sander.
  20. desertgem

    desertgem MODERATOR Senior Errer Collecktor Moderator Supporter

    Some on the forum who learned to grade from Ebay.

    Not by this method, but many have attempted it in other ways. Some used to even advertise their skills until increased demand for unaltered coins ( even rare ones) became dominant. It was called "repairing" the coin with holes, gouges, marks, etc.

    Nice illustration of whizzing, Paul!

    PassthePuck likes this.
  21. iPen

    iPen Well-Known Member

    (Deleted - wrong thread)
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