What Is This Cloud Of Specs On The Planchet Caused By?

Discussion in 'US Coins Forum' started by Chris Winkler, Jul 9, 2020.

  1. Chris Winkler

    Chris Winkler New Member

    in building some nice sets of PR65-67 US mid 20th century coins, one thing I notice is almost every coin has this cloud of specks on the planchet, typically in front of the face and behind the head. See attached. My question is what is causing it? It's very hard to find a mid century proof coin w/o them.

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  3. cpm9ball

    cpm9ball CANNOT RE-MEMBER

    It looks like die deterioration to me. Are you sure this is a proof? ~ Chris
  4. robp

    robp Well-Known Member

    Metal flow?
  5. Chris Winkler

    Chris Winkler New Member

    Pretty much ever graded PRXX has them. Quite frustrating to dig through them all and when I find one, typically pricey...
  6. Oldhoopster

    Oldhoopster It seemed like a good idea at the time.

    Radial flow lines.

    When the planchet is struck, metal will be pushed into the design, letters, and towards the rim. This metal flow will slowly wear the die, until it gets to the point where the erosion lines are visible. If you look closely, you’ll see that they are raised, meaning they were recessed in the die surface.
  7. Chris Winkler

    Chris Winkler New Member

    Interesting! Thanks Hoopster, I'll keep digging for the needle in the haystack! BTW, auto spell changed your name to Hipster, LOL!
    Kentucky likes this.
  8. cpm9ball

    cpm9ball CANNOT RE-MEMBER

    Auto spell......spell check......they're all the same! It's like driving on the interstate during rush hour with your eyes closed. ~ Chris
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  9. Oldhoopster

    Oldhoopster It seemed like a good idea at the time.

    Try using an Amazon Fire tablet. Not only does the spell check s...…. er, leave something to be desired. It has a habit of replacing common words like of, or, in, on, etc. with similar words. IN is replaced with ON, or OF with IF even if you used the correct word. You'll see many of my posts are edited because I have to change it back to the original so the grammar makes sense. I've even had a member send me a private IM politely suggesting that my posts would have more credibility if I used better grammar! :banghead:

    Don't buy an Amazon Fire tablet
  10. cpm9ball

    cpm9ball CANNOT RE-MEMBER

    I use a format that almost never makes a mistake unless I am in a hurry. It's called proofreading. ~ Chris
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  11. Collecting Nut

    Collecting Nut Borderline Hoarder

    Welcome to CT.
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  12. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    I just tagged this one for a best answer..... Nothing to add to this spot on answer.
    Chris Winkler likes this.
  13. johnmilton

    johnmilton Well-Known Member

    According to Roger Burdette, the Proof dies that the mint used in this are were chromium plated. As they were used specks of metal came off of them and scared the surface of the dies.

    I have another theory. Looking at this piece, I think that it has been dipped more than once. After a while you take off enough of the Proof surface to dull it, which makes marks like this more obvious.

    Here are a couple of higher grade Proof dimes that show the same sort of marks.

    Here is a 1936 that is graded PR-66, CAC.

    1936 Proof Dime O.jpg 1936 Proof Dime R.jpg

    And here is a 1942 that also a PR-66.

    1942DimeO.JPG 1942DimeR.JPG
  14. Chris Winkler

    Chris Winkler New Member

    I have found most of the MS65, 66 & even 67's on ebay are WAY OVERGRADED!!! Scratched, gouges, stains. Mostly all PCGS. Anyone feel that way? ANACS has a July special for 10 grades for $10 each. Would love to hear consensus on best graders.
  15. Conder101

    Conder101 Numismatist

    The OP coin does show flowlining. (the mint calls this "starburst" today) This isn't too unusual for early modern proofs. Frankly they used the dies too long and often repolished them to remove flowlines and then continued to use them. As for the spotting I think it may be possibly be the result of the coins being dipped and rinsed with tap water, the flowlines still holding some water and being the last places to dry and leaving chemical deposits.
    Chris Winkler likes this.
  16. GDJMSP

    GDJMSP Numismatist Moderator

    As others have said, it's just wear lines in the die caused by metal flow. That's all it is and it's perfectly normal.
  17. Chris Winkler

    Chris Winkler New Member

    Understood, it just distracts from the beauty of the coin. When I buy a proof, I want a mirror finish, not a starburst!!! That's why I have to typically go up a grade or 2 and double the price of the lesser quality ones if I want mirror proof planchet...
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