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Everything posted by shagreen

  1. If it is a die crack the opened crack would result in a raised or convex feature on the coin. The picture looks more like lamination problems with the planchet "blistering" during its production. Lamination features typically reveal missing metal in contrast to raised metal from a crack
  2. From memory, their silver bullion value was less than the denomination so they had to be classed as token
  3. Here are the same two proof farthing obverses from the Verene collection under different lighting, with the copper version again presented as the upper coin. The use of a chemical dip in bronzing does produce a more even color/tone - again complicated by variation in toning over time
  4. Hi - I have attached copper and bronzed proofs pictures from the Verene collection, as the bronzing was actually a chemical dip, the surfaces are much more even in colour - allowing for toning variation given the 200 years passage of time. Will send next the same two farthings in opposite lighting - yes its hard to photograph. The copper farthing is ex Peck
  5. The Verene collection of UK proofs sold by Nobles Auctions last July also included the mule 1839 mule 6d
  6. The Verene sale enables some observations on the current state of the market for UK predecimal proofs: Gold and large silver proof 19thC coins (particularly 5 sovereigns and crowns) are extremely well bid. Most of these in the collection were bought by dealers Bronzed and copper proof coins are not chased by dealers, particularly anything smaller than a penny ultra rare coins like patterns, mules and die orientation varieties are mainly hunted by collectors and the prices are reasonable slabbing is not required if the coin has great eye appeal and knowledgeable purchasers actually appreciate their opportunity to self grade and maybe get a bargain Ephemera such as the original cases for the early sets are not chased by dealers and were comparative bargains in this sale given their much rarer than the coins
  7. Yes the "official" case for the 1887 short set is very rare I have only seen one on-line in 12 years and it wasn't for sale. I am also in the market for one. Here are some pictures, sorry for blur - they were taken from the internet. As already mentioned original long set cases turn up on the open market occasionally say once a year - there are many reproductions around.
  8. shagreen

    Proof Set Boxes

    You can see here from the official RM pamphlet that the silver set case cost almost as much as the coins and cabinets were all the vogue for storage - so yes they are very rare
  9. shagreen

    Proof Set Boxes

    The original boxes are leather on timber frame and the maroon leather is very thin and textured to look like shagreen or shark skin. A high quality leather preservative would be fine nothing lumpy that can get into the texture and be hard to polish out. Be carefull of reproduction cases the quality of the arms print is a give away it should be very sharp and three dimensional.
  10. Taking the 1951 VIP crown as an example; the Royal Collection could be expected to have such a coin it is distinguishable by additional polish to the planchet and dies prior to striking to create ultra reflective mirrors which then exaggerate their cameo appearance. See link to pics - This ultra cameo is caused by the contrast of the mirrors to the frosting of the raised parts (effigy) of these coins due to the acid etch of the dies prior to polishing "the table" of the dies. The edge lettering is also said to be distorted due to multiple strikes by the dies to a planchet (to bring up the relief). As the planchet already had the lettering applied one could expect such an effect but I haven't personally been able to definitively measure it: https://www.dropbox.com/s/b2p3vim9my64x09/royal%20collection%20VIP%20Crwn%20Obv%20%20468745-1407143032.jpg?dl=0 https://www.dropbox.com/s/u0k9epr37rv5cut/royal%20collection%20VIP%20Crwn%20Obv%20%20468745-1407143046.jpg?dl=0 https://www.dropbox.com/s/rq050exo0c856jk/royal%20collection%20VIP%20Crwn%20Obv%20edge%20468745-1407143018.jpg?dl=0 Museum Victoria in Melbourne Australia also have VIP versions ( sent to the Melbourne Branch Mint) here is a link to their examples obverse https://www.dropbox.com/s/89896ufiubyolap/413640-large.jpg?dl=0 another example sold a few years back by London Coins https://www.dropbox.com/s/wky67uomruofanh/1951%20VIP%20crown%20obv%20CGS%20case.jpg?dl=0 https://www.dropbox.com/s/lii2rlcxwq7py3f/1951%20VIP%20crown%20obv%202%20CGS%20case.jpg?dl=0 unless the various strikes i.e. proof , specimen, VIP are all in as struck condition and photographed together it is problematic just from their pictures to properly assess their differences
  11. Open case for 1951 premium sethttps://www.dropbox.com/s/ezgc7nkb8qdr9ds/1951%20premium%20case%20front%20open%20right.jpg?dl=0
  12. Here is another 1951 case for the discussion what is the difference between a case and a box anyway? This is an official Royal Mint case will put the open case pic up next sending
  13. Received this email a few days ago (refer below) and wonder if anyone can shed some light on the matter as I am located far away in Australia.. I dont expect London coins will get too many takers charging for something that was free. I do get the impression that encapsulation is starting to gain traction with collectors wishing to sell. The recent Nobles Sale here featured a significant Australian PCGS encapsulated collection by Dr G. Fenton and it sold rather well http://www.noble.com.au/auctions/search/?sale=112&p=1&c=6255 - much better than I expected given the state of the coin market here best in numismatics Vince The population report valuations by grade, general information, and the My Page functions are now available on a subscription basis via the London Coins website. The annual subscription charge is £99 payable to London Coins LTD, after payment is received we will set you up on the new system. Membership will run for one year from the date we set you up. Subscribers will be able to View The Population Report View The Valuations By Grade Current and Past Input their coins in the system (or access their old CGS coin list) to get Valuation Reports, Photo Gallery, Collection lists which shows your collection in the full series, and a league table entry. Subscribers may apply to be London Coins Grading Members, signed up members will be able to submit coins for grading. To become a subscriber contact 01474 874895 to pay by card. Or send your cheque payable to London Coins LTD to London Coins 4-6 Upper Street South, New Ash Green, Kent DA3 8JJ. This annual subscription of £99 equates to £8.25 per month or £1.90 per week and will assist our costs in maintaining the image gallery, valuations by grade and the back end database and IT that supports all this. Cheaper Service Coming Soon for Information Only Users. At the moment we are looking quickly to re-establish the functions that the former CGS My Page users were accustomed to, but we are intending shortly to offer a service for information only users who wish only to see the population reports and valuations by grade, and not to log their coins into the system. We expect this will be £19.99 per annum for population report only and £49 for population report plus valuation by grade. Regards Semra Cetin
  14. shagreen

    Gothic Crown Query

    Looking through about 60 undecimo edged gothic crowns they were all struck with inverted dies so if yours is medal alignment it would be rare. Looking at your picture the rim is very flat which is characteristic of the plain edge proof versions I would suggest yours is also a plain edge. Now the plain edge does come in both die alignments and in 2 die states see ESC 6th edn by Bull p 371
  15. shagreen

    Jubilee Florins

    First year of issue i.e. 1887 coins are always held on to hence more available now and in better condition, the other years you mention would have circulated more and hence been caught by the massive withdrawal of 925 fine silver in the 1920's onwards
  16. that's a beautifull crown Azda and a condition rarity which gets me back to the concept of rarity. Rarity really encompasses two circumstances the first obvious one is numerical in how many are in existence this wont change and can only decrease with losses over time. The second is rarity in the market i.e. how often a particular coin regardless of the number in existence comes up for sale. Some rare coins say a UNA 5 sov are undoubtedly a rare coin with less than say 400 struck but an example turns up in the market say 6 times a year so its not rare in the market. Some coins are also of course both e.g.petition crown and rarity in the market can change over time depending on price and popularity best in numismatics Shagreen
  17. shagreen

    Specimen Coins

    Examination of archived (pre 1950's documents from the Royal Mint and its branches reveals that officers interchanged the terms specimen and proof even in the same document. One retired Mint officer I spoke to mentioned work instructions were issued for 5 levels of "proof" production from (1) selected business strikes through to (5) polished planchets, special die treatments and different press set ups (striking conditions). Unfortunately I havent been able to track down these documents - any one here know ? My view is all proofs are specimens but not all specimens are proofs. The meaning of the words has changed over the last 150 years as have many other English words. The words in scientific context have different meanings again. As an example for the Mint using the terms; in 1955 The Melbourne branch Mint struck both proof and specimen coins and charged 2/- and 6d premium respectively. The difference was subtle as the specimens were struck from fresh "working" dies and not subjected to normal handling (hand picked) the best way to discriminate between the strikes is by the higher level of reflectivity in the fields and definition in the rim decoration i.e. beads, egg/dart features and flatness of the rim for the proof strikes. Given proofs are essentially hand made the quality will vary from year to year and should one look back at say 19th C. pieces dated 1839 and 1887 they reveal many variations in their finish over the years they were issued, - as they were made in small batches with different dies and press set ups. One real plus numismatically for these specimen / proof strikes is their special handling at the Mint and no wear from circulation make die research on the as struck coins straight forward.
  18. the brush stroke like swirling tone lines are absolutely authentic see !/- rev and 6d Obv and these should be on Both sides this set has a mixture of lightly cleaned and untampered surfaces - I agree with some others above that of all the coins the crown has seen the most work
  19. https://www.dropbox.com/s/17dx45ghn2oi1qo/f2%201902%20crown%20obv%202%20long%20set.jpg?dl=0 https://www.dropbox.com/s/3t6bopq1hp2hfv7/f6%201902%20crown%20rev%202%20long%20set.jpg?dl=0 above are some links to what an original uncleaned proof crown should look like - apparently the blank coins were rinsed in mild acid hence the crackled tone - all over matte finish is what to look for
  20. There are a few references I can dig up that describe the "official" Royal Mint supplied boxes as maroon/red with the coat of arms on the lid. The colour does fade and they were hand made in small batches so there is minor variation in their size. These boxes were supplied from 1887 onwards for the sets and the larger full set boxes do appear on the market occasionally. The 1887 and 1893 boxes are similar in design very generous in their size with no lifter ribbons for the roundels and no royal mint logo on the inner silk lining of the lid. Hearn made a lot of copies in the 1950's. The 1902 -1911 boxes were a different smaller shape and made with morrocan style leather (the fashion at the time) Back to 1887-93, besides the Hearn (or other dealer) imprint on the silk other signs of copies are in the quality of the gold leaf arms printed on the lids. Later copies tend to be slightly different in its design and have much less resolution. Of course any collector or dealer can commission typically a jewellery case maker to make what ever colour and shape box they desire
  21. I had a quick look through my Mint records and have attached some correspondence that explains the short cases rarity. 1893 silver set proof/specimens cost 14/-2d (25% premium) and the case 10/-6d so you can appreciate the case was very expensive relative to the coins and this set was targeted by collectors on a budget who couldn't afford the full set including gold which is much more common cased given its lower proportionate cost. https://www.dropbox.com/s/pj2k8vkm3bvidcg/P2172220%20let%20to%20%20H%20Kingston%20ack%20funds%20rec.jpg?dl=0 https://www.dropbox.com/s/t2jg7rr1xtxx6t9/P2172221%20case%20cost%2010s6d%20coins%2014s2d.jpg?dl=0
  22. Here are some links to a "proof" strike, the coin is part of an early issue of the set https://www.dropbox.com/s/5iok4nrofzsbd4g/f2%201887%20double%20florin%20ex%20nobles%20rev.jpg?dl=0 https://www.dropbox.com/s/0vqwddst6k0n2yh/f1%201887%20double%20florin%20ex%20nobles%20obv.jpg?dl=0
  23. Given the 1893 box is far rarer than the contents (they were a costly option at the time and given the typical cabinet storage used by numismatists not commonly taken up) I think the price was right. The ephemera associated with the proof sets is rising in tandem with the coins.
  24. The key difference is Sir Bertram MacKennals' crowned bust effigy of GV used for the colonial coinage was in lower relief that the truncated crownless design used for UK coinage. Much easier to achieve the metal flow required to minimise (not eliminate) ghosting during striking