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About this journal

This journal was originally to record my thoughts on collecting and building my Netherlands Wilhelm III Gold 10 Gulden Set and other projects like  my modern silver bullion NCLT sets. When it got started in the summer of 2007 I was single, in my early 20's, and working on my B.Sc. in Chemical Engineering. Starting in 2016, with my marriage and the birth of my first son, Benjamin, much of my writing has focused on raising my sons to have a love of collecting coins and exonumia and discussing how my collecting occurs in the context of my marriage and life overall.

Entries in this journal

Mental Snapshots in Set Development?

Changes in perceptions and attitude and the effects on our sets. Have you ever wished that you could take a set that you?ve put a lot of work into and compare what it looks like today to what it looked like a month or two ago? Wouldn?t it be nice to look at where you were and where you are and just consider what you?ve done and how you feel about it? I?ve been feeling that way lately about my signature set. I know I?ve been stuck on discussing this set for quite a while now, but as far as co

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Fun Weekend

Spending time at a non-coin convention I've spent most of this weekend at a local gaming/anime convention that is held at my university every year. Before I started college, lost most of my free time and found coin collecting I was a gamer. This is great fun to me even if I don't get to indulge in it often. Ours is the largest and oldest student run convention in the country. This was the 40th year. Those of us that know what it is are quite proud of it. We like discussing coin auctions here

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Thank You, Wonderful Webmasters...

... and the other NGC staff members. I don't know what I'd do without some of this site's features. I was working on adding a slot to my sig set earlier and it just hit me: I have no idea what I would do without the ability to quickly and easily change the slot order in that set. I'm constantly adding new slots that I want inserted into the middle of the set and I recently completely re-arranged the set to make it more organized. The feature that lets you modify the slot order lets me do these

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Who Says Registered Mail is Slow?

From Texas to Florida in a weekend. Wow! Whenever I talk to people about registered mail I get this speech about "it's slower than other forms of mail because it's tracked so carefully but it's much more secure." I get that, but how slow is it really? My latest submission was given over to USPS at our local post office on Friday afternoon (3/20). I checked today and apparently NGC has received it! I did a double take when I saw that. Interestingly enough, this submission was received exactly 2

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Re-imaging the signature set.... Again...

and additional rambling... Well, just the other day I finished taking new pictures of all the coins in my signature set (save one, long story), and I uploaded the cropped images (I think) yesterday. It gets a little hard to keep track of days when I'm not going to class. I was thrilled to see that I managed to capture most of the details in the images this time. It can be so hard with these coins because almost every one of them combines brilliant and matte/burnished surfaces. I had to do this

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What funny little birds...

Collecting the New Zealand Kiwi Bullion Series Well, a few people messaged me and accurately identified the bird pictured in my last post as a Kiwi. It's kind of a funny looking bird isn't it? A wingless, nocturnal, grub eating bird that lives in the brush. They're proof that there needs to be predators in this world. A few thousand years without a legitimate threat and nature creates something adorable but completely defenseless... which is a big part of why they're going extinct. Some had th

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Spring Break is coming!

And this terrible week is getting close to being over. Well guys, I took my "Kinetics and Reactor Design" mid-term this morning... all I can say is "Yuck." Maybe everyone else failed and it won't be so bad... At this point I just have to study all day tomorrow survive my test in "Mass Transfer Operations." It's times like this when I get awfully tempted to buy a coin or two that I want just to feel better about the beating that my GPA is about to take... Friday is payday though... so you never

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A Magnificent Addition

? the 1994 Silver Chinese Unicorn I?m hoping this coin will be arriving at my permanent address in the next couple of days. I?ll get to see it in person in about 11 days when I go home for Spring Break. (That?s assuming I don?t shoot myself before then with the way my workload looks for the next week?) The Chinese Unicorns had a short 4 year run from 1994 to 1997. The mintages on these issues are on the low side. Based on what I?ve read, the 1994 mint state coin had a mintage limit of only 5

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It's Panda Time!

and other news and teasers of what's to come. I find that I tend to get sidetracked rather easily. My registry is somewhat representative of this; 46 sets. I started a few projects mostly just for fun. Then I left them standing when I couldn't support every set and I moved back to one of my core projects. My Chinese Panda set has been a really acute example of this. About 10 months ago I bought the 2008 Panda and made a registry set for it. I was just starting to think about building my signat

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Raising Dust Part II

There's a little bit more too this than I had initially thought. Someone on the chatboards with a little bit more knowledge on this subject than I gave me some additional information on the Mexican Libertad series. It looks like there's a few more varieties than just the 2 that I thought I needed to chase down. The breakdown he provided looks a bit more like: 1982-1989: Small Diameter; Lettered Edge 1990: Small Diameter; Reeded Edge 1991-1995: Small Diameter; Low Relief 1996-1999: Larg

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Raising Dust over Mexican Silver

Getting Mexican Libertads for my signature set. When I made the decision to start working towards my signature set, there was at least 1 coin that I knew was bound to be a miserable pain to acquire. That coin was, naturally, the early design of the Mexican Libertad series. It was redesigned around 1996. For a nice example of the new design all you have to do is buy some of the most recent year at close to melt. The old design is a slightly bigger problem. A really nice, good looking example of

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Completing the First Lunar Set?

The story of a set from start to ?Finish? About a year ago I was still deeply involved in trying to build my set of silver American Eagles. I was feeling temporarily burnt out on the set. Some will consider that heresy but it?s true. I like a little bit of variety in my purchases. That?s one of the reasons that I usually have multiple projects going at the same time. While I was having this apathetic feeling towards (what was) my main project, I happened upon a listing on eBay for a coin like

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The Outrageous Incompetence and Thievery?

? of the United States Postal Service Most of you who have been around and reading these posts for a while already know that I have precious little faith left in the US Postal ?Service? (if it can be so called). Well? here we go again. I ordered a coin from a seller late on Friday. The seller is a great guy and apparently he got the coin shipped out on that Saturday. Most people here know what the ?tracking? is like with USPS, but I was thrilled this morning when I saw that the coin had been

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Knowing When to Stop.

? Sometimes that?s the hardest lesson. I'm not sure I've ever discussed this here, but before I started collecting coins there were 2 subjects that I had truly loved over the course of my life. They both contributed to me becoming a coin collector. The first was history and the second was art. Art taught me a lot of things over the course of the years. Patience is certainly one of them. It?s hard for some people to comprehend spending hundreds of hours over the course of long months working on

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Well... That's a new one on me!

I didn't think that this could happen! I've been doing a fair bit of work recently to improve my signature set for 1 Oz silver bullion coins. One of the things I did was to go back and replace the images of the Australian lunar silver dollars that I had. Some of them hadn't been imaged at all. The ones that had been imaged all looked pink. It was a combination of lighting and a color balance problem. I had uploaded the images anyway because I had nothing better at the time. The new images had

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With Days Like This...

I'm glad I have a hobby. I came back to college yesterday to start the new semester. I found out that the Hall staff had taken my 50ft 12-gauge extension cord as contraband. I then had to deal with (hopefully) the only senior on this campus that doesn't know how to pronounce the word "confiscated." (I'm sorry, but no. It's not "con-fist-i-cated.") Then, today, while buying school supplies someone backs into my car and breaks the cover piece to my break light. And of course he didn't have his i

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Submission Tracking Fixation

Stop spreading it! Sheesh... Everytime I read about someone else obsessively checking their submission status both in the journals and on the chat boards it makes me want to check the status of mine. As of today both invoices in my submission are showing as "Received." They just got them today. It's generally not my practice to check the status of my submissions but once or twice a day, usually at the end of the work day. I have not yet contracted the subject specific case of OCD that some col

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Coming Out of the Tailspin...

... Now where was up again? ... *Boom* I feel like I hit December and my rudder broke. I've been feeling lost for where to go next with my collection. This may sound odd coming from someone with 45 sets in his registry, many of which aren't complete. Well, not really... 17 sets are part of the "Wright Family Collection." While I'm very active in helping to build those sets, how far they go and how fast is my step-father's call, not mine. The other 28 are mine and generally fall into one of t

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Thanks?

? It?s an honor. Truth be told, I was shocked for a moment when I refreshed my page and saw a new little icon sitting next to my name. I think we all hope that we might receive such recognition but I personally didn?t think I?d get it. There are so many other journal authors that write frequently with a passion and a conviction that I can only admire. It adds a certain force to their writing that?s hard to miss. I?ve been kinda lost the last couple of weeks as far as ?where do I go from here

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Matched Set and Complete Set

Upgrades and gap filling. Ever since I started getting the 2008 business strike presidential dollars I've been trying to deal with a bit of an inbalance. The 2008 coins were all MS66FD, the 2007 coins were almost all MS65FD. This was partially because in the first part of 2007 the MS66FDs were getting pretty steep prices and I didn't want to pay that much. In 2008 though the MS66FD prices came down rather sharply, even for the 2007 coins. So in addition to adding the 2008 coins I've been slowl

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Civil War Copper

Then and Now. It's a mild understatement to say that the Civil War was a rough time for the country. Grover already provided the "the Civil War was about money" post and I don't really want to get into that. Let's leave the discussion at the fact that, during the war, silver, gold, and eventually the copper-nickel cents were removed from circulation. Say what you want about cents, nickels and dimes now, but back then these coins were essential to commerce and their removal was potentially crip

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Firing off round #2

The second submission I've packed up the second submission. 2 invoices. 1 is just there to correct some mislabeled slabs. The 2nd is an 18 coin submission. 4 coins are from a 1982 souvenier set, a nickel, dime, quarter, and half. I don't really expect all of them to grade remarkably well but my step-father and I are looking for some stuff to put into our 1982 set. That set continues to limp along when most of the others are nearly complete or complete. The other 14 coins are a bunch of SBAs.

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A Complete STEEL ...

... cent set that is. Well, this weekend one of my hopes has been to get the last coin I needed for a complete 3 coin steel cent set from 1943. Part of my problem has been that I wanted nice looking MS67s. I didn't want MS66s and I didn't want coins that looked like they had "gunk" on them (I know, really specific aren't I?). Well, this weekend there were 2 such coins ending at auction and 1 with a Buy it Now. The buy it now was somewhat higher than I wanted to pay (though it did have a Best

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I think I've been shilled....

and I'm kinda ticked off about it. Earlier today I noticed 2 sets of some items I want for a set I'm making. They were ending 5 minutes apart from each other at around 8:30 (my time). They had a reasonable starting price ($49.95, free shipping) and no bids. There were also 2 sets available for a BIN ($69.95, free shipping) from the same seller. I decided to bid on the first set and wait. I bid $69.90 so I wouldn't pay anymore than the BIN sets. At about 45 minutes before the set ends, someon

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National Parks Commemorative Quarter Series Passes Congress

They've gone too far IMO Okay... So, we've had 10 years of state quarters. Then they extended that to an 11th year for places that aren't states, some of which have rejected statehood several times. Meanwhile, we got the Westward Journey nickels, and the Presidential Dollars, and the Sacagawea, and soon we'll get different penny reverses and changing sacagawea reverses. And now this new 10 year joke. What's the deal here? Isn't some of this what the commemoratives and the bronze medals are for

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