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Journal Comments posted by JTO

  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.


  2. 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/


  3. 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...



  4. 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.

  5. 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?




  6. 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.




  7. 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.



  8. 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. 

  9. I too agree, the "journals" are worse not better.  The registry is also worse and I have cut my time there by 80% (maybe a good thing?)  NGC has taken the "high road" out of town and left us collector behind.  The time is ripe for a Third, Third party to open a user friendly Registry for us "the collector" that serve as the fuel for the hobby.  Maybe the ANA, hint , hint...


    Here is what I see as a solution, after having several PCGS coins returned that would not cross ( AFTER NGC GOT THE GRADING FEE) I had an idea.  If NGC is so much purer and dedicated to truth and honesty then here is an idea:

    Submit PCGS coins to NGC to cross (full fee) or just to grade (like the GSA coins.)  These coins have no guarantee from NGC if they are left in the PCGS holder, they just get a grade.  Because they are still in the PCGS holder they:

    1) Don't get included in the NGC population report

    2) The NGC grade is affixed to the PCGS holder so the coin can be used in the NGC registry

    3) NGC has no liability as they do not provide a guarantee (as stated in the small print by NGC on both GSA and Ancient coins)

    4) If the coin is sent in for only an NGC grade but not gross over (the GSA treatment by request) the fee could be reduced (again NGC is not providing a guarantee)

    This would bring me back to NGC and I would be willing to pay to get my PCGS coins on the NGC registry (which I like better).

    But is is hard to look at a Liberty V in a PCGS MS-66 holder that NGC would not cross and then resubmit to cross at MS-65 or 64,  Would you do it?