...Of Cracks and Clashes

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gherrmann44

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Since I am starting a new NGC Collectors Society custom set based on the Spanish Provisional Government coins of 1870, I thought to re-image all the coins in the set. It’s funny how when you give your coins another look that you notice new things about them. Or, is it that you haven’t looked in a long time and simply forgot. Either way its part of what makes this hobby fun for me.

 

One of the coins I re-imaged is an NGC 1870 MS-65 Red 1 Centimo coin. This coin represents the lowest denominated copper coin of the series. It only weighs 1 gram and measures 15.5 mm in diameter. I was already fully aware of a couple of major die cracks and a few other smaller ones on the reverse of this coin. However, it only recently dawned on me that several of the marks in the field of the reverse were in fact die clash marks.

 

Die clashes occur when the hammer die strikes an anvil die without a planchet in the collar and the dies leave their impressions on the opposite dies. The fields of the coin are typically incuse meaning that the fields on the die are relief. This is why the impression occurs in the fields because the devices on the die are incuse. Subsequently, that impression is transferred to every coin struck thereafter with that die pair. This can happen with any size dies but I have found it most prevalent on very small coins. Still, many of the Morgan Dollar VAMs are indeed die clashes. I have also found that the heaviest clash marks occur on the anvil die which is typically the coins reverse. That said I have a few coins with clash marks clearly visible on both sides of the coin.

 

Having just noticed the clashing on my Spanish coin, I thought to do an overlay of the obverse on the reverse. There is a slight die rotation that you can see in my overlay picture. A side by comparison of my overlay and without overlay pictures clearly show how the clash marks line up with an outline of the main obverse device.

 

In my pictures I have also pointed out a few of the major die cracks as if they needed pointing out. The other arrows point to the reverse clash marks. Maybe some of those cracks occurred as a result of the clashing. Interesting stuff to ponder. Gary   

1870_1 Centimo_red.jpg

1870_1 Centimo_red_clash.jpg

1870_1 Centimo_red_rev_clash.jpg

1870_1 Centimo_red_rev_clash_with arrows.jpg

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That is a very interesting clash....I wonder if there are many out there for this type coin

Clash dies have been a interest of mine since finding a bunch of them in the Icelandic coins I have. It appears to be a common accurance among world coins ...I have never seen a U.S. coin with clash marks ...I guess we are much better in the coin making department

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Clashes are very common on Morgan dollars.  One of the most extreme examples of die clashes on a US coin is an 1814 half dollar, one of the first coins I bought (I was in eighth grade at the time) because the clashes were so obvious. 

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Gary very interesting observations, there doesn't seem to be many clashes on British coins - or people just do not mention them!

I seem to be moving towards Spanish and Italian coins although from an earlier period, the Napoleonic era in particular as there, surprisingly, seems to be so much to discover. Can I ask how you get such good pictures?

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56 minutes ago, ColonialCoinsUK said:

Gary very interesting observations, there doesn't seem to be many clashes on British coins - or people just do not mention them!

I seem to be moving towards Spanish and Italian coins although from an earlier period, the Napoleonic era in particular as there, surprisingly, seems to be so much to discover. Can I ask how you get such good pictures?

That is a loaded question that is impossible to fully answer in this thread. So instead, I'll list my equipment and recommend a good book. I use a camera stand with two daylight fluorescent lighting sources. My camera is a Nikon D3500 SLR camera with a Venus Optics Laowa V-DX 60mm F2.8 Macro 2:1 lens. Also, I use Photoshop Elements to edit my pictures. The book is the first and most important thing for you to buy. That book is entitled "Numismatic Photography" by Mark Goodman. In it you'll learn most of the tricks of the trade. You'll also be able to determine how much you want to spend on equipment from a basic point and shoot camera to more advanced cameras. Be patient, it takes a while to hone your skills. However, with digital cameras just delete the practice shots and start all over again! :) I hope you find this helpful. If I can be of further assistance, feel free to IM me through Collectors Society.

Thank you for your comments on my photography. I hope to take my rig on the road to local coin shows to supplement my retirement income!

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Gary as usual excellent coins and write up. You know I collect Brutish coins and I think I have maybe two did breaks. I guess it all depends on the coins and planchects there using at the time. Thanks. Always interesting. 

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