NGC Discovers Doubled Die Obverse 1984-W Olympics $10 Gold Commemorative

Posted on 2/1/2006

The Mint State 1984-W Olympic $10 Gold Commemorative exists in two distinct finishes, a flat matte-like surface and a prooflike satin surface with subtle cameo contrast. While researching these different characteristics, Dave Camire, President of NCS and error coin expert, noticed distinct doubling on the obverse of a prooflike example.

1984-W Olympics Coin
1084-W Olympics $10. All photos by David J. Camire
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The Mint State 1984-W Olympic $10 Gold Commemorative exists in two distinct finishes, a flat matte-like surface and a prooflike satin surface with subtle cameo contrast. While researching these different characteristics, Dave Camire, President of NCS and error coin expert, noticed distinct doubling on the obverse of a prooflike example. The doubling is pronounced throughout the obverse and the greatest spread is visible on the designer's initials.

A doubled die occurs when a die receives two misaligned impressions from a hub, resulting in a duplication of some or all of the coins devices and legends. The doubling thus transfers to each coin struck from that die. Perhaps the best known variety of this category is the 1955 Lincoln Cent Doubled Die Obverse.

This gold commemorative variety is one of very few double die varieties on a US gold coin, and the only modern commemorative doubled die. It will be noted on the NGC certification label as a doubled die obverse. This is the only die variety in the Modern Commemorative Series currently recognized by NGC. Dave Camire commented on his discovery that he "was more surprised than anything else. Most varieties like this on twenty year old coins are well publicized. It just wasn't expected."

When the submitter, coin dealer Robert Lecce, was contacted and notified of the discovery, he said that he was thrilled and appreciated NGC’s efforts. He also said that he would begin searching for other examples. The overall scarcity of this coin has not yet been determined. So far, a lone example is the only specimen identified by NGC.

Coin detail showing doubled design elements Coin detail showing doubled design elements Coin detail showing doubled design elements
Coin detail showing doubled design elements 1984-W Olympics $10 Double Die Obverse. Coin detail showing doubled design elements.
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Coin detail showing doubled design elements