What's your best garage sale or flea market find

Discussion in 'Coin Chat' started by brokecoinguy, Apr 16, 2018.

  1. brokecoinguy

    brokecoinguy I like what I can't afford

    So as my job sometimes has me traveling to north and south Georgia I can't help but fall for a rural garage sale or two (or antique store) along the way. Hoping for that middle-of-nowhere place where someone just happens to be getting rid of old coins - half dime folders, bust halves, large cents - you know, that type. Unfortunately that has not happened yet so I have nothing to contribute.

    Go go ahead and show off your best garage sale, flea market, or thrift store purchase!
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  3. stldanceartist

    stldanceartist Minister of Silly Walks Supporter

    Here are my top 3 from the last few years (that I can remember, anyway)

    1) Palestine "Souvenir Mil" Token, NGC MS61BN

    Palestine Souvenir Token NGC MS61BN.jpg

    2) 1901 "Shifted Eagle" DDR Morgan Dollar, NGC XF45

    1901 Morgan Dollar DDR VAM 3 NGC XF45.jpg

    3) Switzerland 1891 5 Rappen, NGC MS65

    Switzerland - 1891 5 Rappen 2.jpg
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  4. medoraman

    medoraman Supporter! Supporter

    I bought a Cleopatra VII 40 obol piece at a flea market a few years ago. I paid $80 for it. It was in a Littleton flip, properly attributed, and everything. Seller said it had sit there for over 5 years with no one asking about it. Similar pieces today all sell for over $500.
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  5. Evan8

    Evan8 Old Soul

    I have posted this a few times before but here is my best flea market find to date. Paid $25 back in 2009 for this.

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  6. paddyman98

    paddyman98 No Common Cents! Supporter

    Flea Market - I got this 5 piece Blank Planchet set for $20.00 last year. Ignore the 1972.. Not sure if it's true.
  7. Kentucky

    Kentucky Supporter! Supporter

    Bought this at a flea market for $0.25 from a guy who lamented that someone would cut up an Indian cent...
    IHC clip.jpg
  8. heavycam.monstervam

    heavycam.monstervam Outlaw Trucker & Coin Hillbilly

    I didnt take photos but last year was my best flea market find. I stumbled upon 2 bracelets that an 80 y.o. woman was selling. One was like a cuban link & the other was a figueroa.
    She was asking $5 each so i figured the melt value was atleast worth that. I got home and realized that they were marked .950 both.
    I did a bit of googling and determined that they were either higher content silver OR platinum. I took them to the local melt down shop and to my surprise they both tested as platinum and weighed in at a combined 27g.
    I agreed to sell the pair for $700:troll:
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  9. Sunflower_Coins

    Sunflower_Coins Importer and Exporter

    Pulled a 1924-D SLQ for spot because it was "dateless". It had most of the 2 and 4 and VG-F details.
    ddddd likes this.
  10. ToughCOINS

    ToughCOINS Dealer Member Moderator

    Title of this post? Fill in the blanks . . . " _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ "

    As a regular coin buyer on the floor of a local flea market some 30 years ago, I was approached by an old codger who seemed to know lots about watches, clocks and firearms, and just enough about coins to buy and flip them profitably. He probably worked coin transactions with a newsstand magazine. We had rubbed elbows several times at the same tables in the past, and he asked if I'd be interested in a large collection of coins. Naturally, I replied in the affirmative.

    After digging into his coat, he handed me a type-written list of coins that must have been 8-10 pages long. It took me several minutes to scan it. I felt pretty comfortable that the listed coins were well-catalogued, as there were numerous notations on it for pieces which were cleaned, scratched, spotted, bent, holed, etc, so I was sure the list had been created by a collector who sold sold the coins to this man (or whose family did).

    Of the several hundred coins listed, there were perhaps a dozen coins that I really thought I wanted, if they were as described . . . but of particular note was one very rare coin, described as being in VF condition. More on that coin later. The kicker? I had to buy the whole deal intact . . . no cherry-picking.

    I told him I could bring together the funds for most of the coins, but that I might need to buy all but a few of the coins in one purchase, and the final few after that. He said that would be okay, as long as the most desirable coins were in the second purchase. We agreed to meet several days later.

    I scrambled furiously for the next few days, raising cash everywhere I had money I didn't mind parting with, and even some places I'd forgotten. I was in a better position than I thought I'd be, but still short of what I'd need to buy that one piece with everything else. Still, I knew I would be able to buy it in the second purchase, or at least I was sure I would be. I was not yet experienced enough to know that I could bring a bigger dealer in on the deal to make it work in one purchase.

    I showed up at his home and, as I went through the coins I found them to be graded a little charitably, but not outrageously so. No surprise there . . . I was pretty used to that. I was hoping that one piece was not a problem coin.

    By the time I got halfway through the list, I was getting the feeling some coins were missing, as I'd not yet run across the ones I really wanted. Not wanting to offend him, I said nothing, and continued to wade through the entire collection. There were many good saleable coins in the deal, and I would make a decent profit, but I didn't see about a half dozen coins I was fixated on, and most particularly the rarity that I'd been obsessing over for nearly a week.

    After I finished going through all of the coins, I pointed out that several were missing. His response? Some other guy bought those . . . I had to commit to buy the whole deal, but he let someone else cherry-pick? I was upset, but not visibly so. That transaction always rubbed me the wrong way, but I never let on.

    Oh, and the blank title above? . . . "THE ONE THAT GOT AWAY"

    And the coin? . . . Scroll down a little further . . .

    An 1802 Half Dime grading VF! I've never seen or even heard of that coin since, so I don't know if it was a problem-free coin, or even if it was graded properly, but for such a rare coin, it almost doesn't make a difference. I can only hope it resides in a local collection someplace, and that I'll get another crack at it. Of course, in those days, it was only about $25 - $30K in the catalogues, and now it's more like the cost of a house . . . ughh.
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2018
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  11. Mainebill

    Mainebill Wild Bill

    I’ve bought a few at antique shows but they were from people that knew what they had. Probably the best a 1797 $1 in vf. Raw was. $1800 I sold it a couple years later for $2500. A buddy who covers garage and estate sales once showed me a 1832 and 36 bust halves both totally original xf. Said $100 for the pair. I immediately paid him. He said he paid $10 got a holed original vf small planchet pine tree from a guy that got it in a house cleanout. Paid $1100. Went with him when he immediately took the money to buy a gun a buddy of his had being in the antique business I see a lot of early coins. Many are crap. Some aren’t though. A nice original vf 1806 o-109 half for $250 at an auction. A few years later Pcgs vf 30 cac and sold for $1k
  12. brokecoinguy

    brokecoinguy I like what I can't afford

    Wow! Now that is a find, especially for $25!
  13. brokecoinguy

    brokecoinguy I like what I can't afford

    Thanks for the story @ToughCOINS, even if it did bring back some bad memories as you typed it out! I would probably be visibly upset if I found out he let someone else cherry pick it. Any other coins stick out from that lot?
  14. ToughCOINS

    ToughCOINS Dealer Member Moderator

    Two others I recall missing out on were a trade dollar and a gold $3 piece, both of which were supposed to be Gem BU coins. The dates never stuck in my mind, so I'm very sure they were common. I managed to get some pretty nice grades on other coins from that collection, so I've always assumed those owner-assigned grades could have been legit. I don't recall what the other missing coins were.
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