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TPG grading of Two 1869 Pennies

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Sometimes the TPG services of interest may grade a specific coin quite differently. Perhaps the graders at "this service" have a different standard of excellence from the graders at "that service"? As we know, for all graded specimens, the grade assigned has a substantial impact on the coin's sale price even though buyers buy the coin and not the plastic holder! Consequently, while we might think that we have a preference for a particular service because of their standards for evaluation of the true preservation condition for coins that we are knowledgeable about, large grading inconsistencies do exist within the same grading service.

A prime example of a grading service's inconsistency comes to my mind when I see a PCGS graded MS 65 BN 1869 Penny being offered in an upcoming auction. An 1869 PCGS graded MS 65 RB penny was purchased by me in an auction several years ago. The difference on the state of preservation of these two coins is remarkable, yet both have been assigned the same numerical grade, aside from the color!

Low quality photos of the two coins are attached for reference purposes.





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I don't think I can substantially disagree as the BN has die rust strike characteristics on the obverse rather than actual wear and though the blowup is larger of it, the reverse possibly somewhat better struck than yours (e.g.  lighthouse detail, center of breast chainmail area and ship hull). I think that yours is lovely though, and overall has a better obverse aesthetically. I liked especially the Gerald Jackson specimen of about 2-3 years ago which was only 64RB by recall.

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