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  1. I think that coin928 hit the mark with his/her concern about the after hours work by NGC employees to do Show Service. I find the people at NGC to be remarkably kind and considerate. When you find a business where the people are "remarkably kind and considerate" you tend to want to interact with them more or preferentially over their competitor. There is the issue: the price of success is more work. More work is financially good but can be personally taxing. I too hope that the employees at NGC are being cared for as well as they have cared for us. The fact that the same faces return to each show argues that there is symbiosis between NGC and its employees. My comment about the decrease in show services was not about the quality of the service itself but about the fact that the service is decreasing over time. If I did not really care about NGC I would not post comments here. Nevertheless we all need to remember that this is a hobby/business and the NGC people at the shows are working while we play. John
  2. There seems to be a growing corporate strategy for NGC to focus on the Non-US market over the US and leave the US to PCGS. I may be wrong and this is in no way a dump on NGC (you can read my laudatory comments about Mark Salzberg and NGC in the "A SLQ Problem Coin's Journey to Righteousness" journal thread.) https://www.ngccoin.com/boards/blogs/entry/292-a-slq-problem-coins-journey-to-righteousness/ It appears that while NGC is increasing its investments in the international market it is not doing as much on upgrading the U.S. platform. The data I use to make the conclusion that NGC is shifting their focus to the Non-US market over the US is based on 1) they dumped all PCGS coins out of existing "World" slots, years ago. 2) The registry no longer starts with US coins but it takes an egalitarian approach to all countries listing coins alphabetically by nation (I start each of my "registry encounters" with Albania.) 3) While they have decreased their presence at US shows (Long Beach etc.) they have increased their presence internationally. This includes both a greater presence at international shows and NGC has opened new "bricks and mortar" Centers in many other countries especially in Asia. This "corporate approach" is probably working as they seem to be the dominant grading service for both World and Ancient coins. Their volume has increased particularly in Asian paper money. With regard to the registry platform the registry navigation drives me crazy. When I finish working on my Complete Standing Liberty Quarter (SLQ) set and want to go back to Quarters to work on my "one per date" SLQ set or Early Quarters set and use the back navigation button on the browser, the browser does not go back to the Quarter's registry page but back to the first page of the NGC Registry (Albania.) I met with the NGC staff at a FUN show and explained this problem and they were clearly aware of as they said that others had complained as well. Alas 2 years and no fix and you cannot "bookmark” page 2, 3 or 8 even as a go around. If you bookmark page 6 the Registry opens to the first page (Albania.) I believe in NGC and find their grading more consistent and fair than PCGS. I much prefer dealing with Mark Salzberg over David Hall. I remember when Heritage Auction was more ANACS than PCGS or NGC. Then ANACS slowly disappeared and it was NGC and PCGS. Now, for U.S., coins I am seeing a decrease in NGC leaving PCGS alone. I hope NGC does not abandon the U.S. market by default (by not focusing their prime effort in the U.S. market and shifting it to the World market.) As I said I believe in and prefer NGC. NGC brought me the Edge View which brings some coins to life. NGC, for the most part, photographs every coin that they grade (PCGS does not.) That photo can help you recover a stolen coin (I have done it.) These efforts by NGC are what sets them as the market leader regardless of who was first to slab a coin (PCGS 1986 and NGC 1987) or who the Investor Class prefers. Please don't leave U.S. NGC! John
  3. Unfortunately that is the rule not the exception. NGC offered more "Show Grading" opportunities in the past. They came to Long Beach, for example, then just stopped. Then they shortened the window for Shows Grading at U.S. shows that they did attend. This seems to be a growing corporate strategy for NGC to focus on the Non-US market over the US and leave the US to PCGS. I may be wrong and this is in no way a dump on NGC (you can read my laudatory comments about Mark Salzberg and NGC in the "A SLQ Problem Coin's Journey to Righteousness" journal thread.) https://www.ngccoin.com/boards/blogs/entry/292-a-slq-problem-coins-journey-to-righteousness/
  4. A blue one I think... what a guy!
  5. Here is a coin that I paid a whopping $360 for, obviously in 2002. I was proud of my find because all the other bidder appeared to be bidding on the holder not the coin. The value of a 1908 with "Motto" is, or was higher than the no motto variety. I paid $40 under greysheet for th coin which was about par for the with motto variety at the time. I took it to the PCGS booth at Long Beach and they aggressively offered to reholder the coin for free, I passed. So the coin sits misunderstood by its holder. I actually have a collection of these and in my experience I have had a easier time finding error PCGS than NGC coins. This is a satirical post bout PCGS for those that are wondering what I am talking about. The motto is on the reverse just above the sun and the holder clearly says that there is no motto, a motto that Theodore Roosevelt felt violated the separation of Church and State. Next a 1849 Gold dollar in an open wreath holder with a close wreath. John
  6. I couldn't agree more!
  7. You are spot on and well within the the thread. Most SS Central America double eagles have a very distinctive orange peripheral toning pattern. The advice to keep a SS Central America OR SS Brother Jonathan (PCGS), SS Republic (NGC) OR SS New York (NGC) in the original holder with as much of the original material (Box, COA, Faux Book/ box, Outer Box...) is solid advice. This is true for either PCGS or NGC based on the ship. But the don't buy SS Central America's in NGC holders argument has two major flaws. First, a Mint State 1857-S in a PCGS holder, without pedigree is just as likely or MORE LIKELY to be cracked out for a higher grade (So don't buy Au-58 or higher graded PCGS 1857-S double eagles unless gold foil pedigree.) Second, as a collector LOOK AT THE COIN FIRST NOT THE HOLDER. Buy the coin not the holder. There is no question that since the 1986 start of PCGS slabs and 1987 start of NGC there has been significant grade inflation. There are so many references it is pointless to cite them all. BUT, Salzberg removed PCGS coins from the registry because, and I agree with him, the grade inflation is more pronounced at PCGS. (Even though NGC's decision to remove PCGS from my registry bummed me out.) To return to your APMEX coin my advice is: look at the coin. Is it solid for the grade? Next, look at the price; is it fair and within you budget? Last, does the coin have good eye appeal especially to you? If the answers to all these questions are yes buy the coin. In the long run it is the coin that will ultimately appreciate not the holder. If the APMEX coin is a great coin at a fair price but you missed out on the Heritage Steal of a Deal why pass? All dealers markup coins. If the markup has sucked the value out of the coin then pass. But let the coin, the market data for several similar coins and your budget be your guide as to whether to purchase or not. Let the dealers make their daily bread ( I am not a dealer.) For fun and fifty years of collecting here is my SS Central America Just my opinion... John
  8. Sadly don't expect the same courteousness, time and insight at PCGS, if D.H. is the expert. Just my experience. Like coin928 I was amazed at how down to earth, smart, caring and kind Mark Salzberg was. He is a true gentleman and scholar. My comment about the other grader comes from these two experiences 1) my first encounter with mark over crossing a 1872 business strike from PCGS to NGC, he had a cold and was clearly not feeling his best and as I waited in line one of NGC people asked if he wanted to stop as the Hour of " meet the expert" had ended but he said no not until everyone who was in line prior to the top of the hour had had their turn...WOW! And 2) at the PCGS table I took a PCGS 1877 Indian cent that had a bit of verdigris at the date to ask about spot removal or conservation. This was 30 minutes into the "hour" and D.H. was in a discussion with John Dannreuther (who himself is a super smart and nice man.) D.H. basically just blew me off, sending me to talk with one of his staff who informed me that only D.H. was authorized to make the call. So I get back in line and a few minutes later D.H. left with maybe 7 or 8 people in line with me and 15 minutes left in the hour. Maybe it was just a bad day for D.H. or maybe an urgent matter came up, I don't know, but the behavior of Mr. Salzberg sets him and NGC above the other "service" in my mind. I am not trying to badmouth anyone, but it is clear Mark Salzberg is not in it (numismatics) just for the money.
  9. What a journey this coin has had. I bought it from Stacks in March 2012 as: "1923-S Standing Liberty Quarter. AU Details--Environmental Damage (PCGS)." I looked at the coin as said I just don't see the damage but I do see a full head. I bid up to $1,375.00 for the problem coin and took it home. Then I CAREFULLY conserved to coin. About a year later at Long Beach I took it to PCGS (because NGC had no at show grading) and show graded it. It came back in a PCGS AU-58 FH. I was quite pleased with myself. Subsequently, as the war between NGC and PCGS got going I decided to cross it to NGC. So, at the 2015 FUN show I decided to wait in line to "Ask the Expert" (Mark Salzberg) who opined that the coin should not be in an AU holder. I told him that a 60 something without full head was a loss to me, as I cared more about the FH designation than the grade. He said it was clearly a full head and he wrote on the holder MS-61 FH and signed his name, I asked, meekly, if the coin might still come back in a "details" or non-FH holder? Salzberg patiently explained that what he wrote would be the grade period, he is the final word at NGC. I must say he was kind and respectful and his passion and care for the hobby came through clearly. So the journey for this coin has been:...Raw to PCGS AU details environmental damage... to PCGS AU-58 FH and finally thanks to Mr Salzberg... it rests for good in an NGC MS-61 FH. The pictures are here you be the judge...
  10. That is all a bit odd because the resolution of a computer monitor is many times that of a TV. The size of the TV is larger but the resolution lower (bigger image but less data/pixels.)
  11. JTO

    My Gobrecht Original or Unknown

    This is truly an original original. There has been a great deal of study on the sequencing of these dollars. One of the relatively early revelations was that the name below base, which was always assumed to have preceded the name on base, actually was a re-strike. During the original striking in December 1836, the first coins were struck. Only those of the earliest group are free from diagnostic die cracks and clash marks. This coin is free of one of two of the earliest die state changes. The first is a die chip in the denticles peripheral to the second A in America on the reverse. The second is a die clash that extends upward and outward from the eagle's right wing. See June 2009 Numismatist Pg 55 by Dannreuther & Shalley. The upshot is that this is probably one of the first ~400 coins minted. The weight is 416 grains and is of .892 fine silver (January issues and restrikes are made with he new standard .9 fine silver with a weight of 412 grains.) NGC declines to opine as to Original versus Restrike stating there is not enough data to make that determination. After the research leading up and the review of the Dr. Korein collection there is ample data to make these determinations and both PCGS and ANACS do!. I am not a fan of PCGS but here they have NGC beat. The coins here is in remarkably good condition, given that they were released into the hands officials and citizens.
  12. Great job on the photography. For what it is worth, in my lowly opinion, this is a very strong example of strike doubling (hub doubling). The feather made me pause but each ghost image appears as a shelflike shadow rather than a separate strike. The secondary, ghost, image has no signs of downward sloping of the shelf on the side of the primary image (the downward slope is need to indicate a true doubled strike of the die.) Just one old guy's view. You can always send it in and see what the "experts" say. I you have, what did they say? John
  13. The couldn't agree more with comments above. I used to eagerly await logging in my new purchases into the NGC website. No longer. In parallel I have watched the posts on the left side of the control board evaporate. I recognize NGC doesn't want to run the website for free, they want a return on their assessment by forcing people to have All of their coins greeted by NGC prior to being permitted on the registry. I read the commentary by Mark Saltsburg Provided data supporting grade inflation by PCGS. Some of the cases stated appeared to be valid and some on further investigation he had an innocent explanation. Regardless to offer a potential solution rather than just complaining: it seems to me that NGC could continue to still continue to support the registry that included both NGC and PCGS by conducting 10% from PCGS Coins on the NGC registry. Effectively, they are already do this. On modern mint state gold commemorative's my numeric score is perfect (Each coin is MS 70). I have a picture as well as a comment for each coin, but because I have 5 PCGS graded coins out of 40 I am relegated to second place. It may be that NGC has made a corporate decision to abandon the American market and focus Asia as demonstrated by the fact that the opening page of the registry is world coins rather than United States coins. While on the issue of the control panel it still drives me crazy, when I work on a set and then hit the back arrow to go back to the control panel, rather than returning to the page that I was on, it goes to the first page which in my case starts with Argentina. NGC's customer service vis-à-vis the registry is becoming a complete failure. John
  14. For what it's worth, here is my opinion: I have had a number of $10 Eagle's with stars placed in aberrant locations. On your coin it appears that the star is a negative image rather than positive. Meaning that the star is essentially incuse, that is, the stars below the surface of the cheek rather than standing out on top of the cheek. If it were a double straight the star should be raised relative to the surface of the cheek rather than incuse. The bottom line is I think this is most likely the result of a bag mark. The $10 Saint Gaudens coin has stars around the round rim and it is likely that when these coins were in a large bag one of the coins impacted the cheek resulting in the indented star that you see. If it was the result of the double straight from the working die the star should be raised, which in the photo it appears not to be. If on the other hand I am incorrectly interpreting the photographs and the star is raised then I think that you may have a double strike. John
  15. JTO

    Is My Coin "Too Good"

    Here is the rub... Crack it out and say goodbye to MS-66. If you decided to recertify it may come back in anything from an MS-67 to a "AU Details Artificial Color." Enjoy the coin, I have cracked out many coins for an album set (I tape the slab insert to the inside cover of the album.) But, recognize that it is a one way street. One trick I use for a coin that I know that I am going to use in an album is to buy a "details" coin that I think might pass for original. Here are my 2 most memorable crack out/recert coins. These were coins that on close inspection I thought were good original coins; that the "Details" grade was inappropriate. 1) 1909-S Indian 1c was in an ICG AU-58 corroded holder. I cleaned the coin carefully with some old Coin Care (the stuff with the now banned TFTCE (trifluoro-trichloro-ethane.) After removing a small amount of verdigris I sent the coin to PCGS and got it back in a PCGS AU-58 holder. The second 2) and my favorite is a 1923-S FH Standing Liberty Quarter that I bought in an NGC AU details improperly cleaned holder. It really did not look cleaned to me. I CAREFULLY dipped it, let it dry for 24 hours and PCGS put it in an AU-58 FH holder. It is now in an NGG MS-61 FH slab and is now in my NGC registry set with picture so you can judge for yourself. I love the albums and I loved the spending time on the NGC registry as a way of enjoying virtual albums. The business decision to no longer allow PCGS has really slowed me down. For most all of my registry sets I have an album as well and for many I only have the album (Lincoln cents, Washington quarters where it make no sense to me to slab a 1964 quarter for the registry.) Buy the coin not the holder... And enjoy the hobby.