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About ColonialCoinsUK

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  1. ColonialCoinsUK

    Why our spouses usually shouldn’t buy our collectables…

    Revenant I sympathise with your situation, my wife gave up buying coins decades ago and decided that coin books, as coin928 has suggested, was a safer bet (though from a provided list). Even these are getting expensive so a gift now tends to be a crate of world beers, with the surprise element being what oddities has she managed to find this time. As I still buy the book I can enjoy both at the same time!
  2. ColonialCoinsUK

    Thank you! Congratulations! & My Hopes for 2019.

    I was delighted, but very surprised, to see that my Napoleon typeset received a Best Classic Set Award as announced by NGC this week. This came as a bit of a shock as the set is not yet complete, although it is not far off. I do have a raw coin for one of the vacant slots which I should really get around to sending to NGC, particularly now that the gaps stand out more than ever! Congratulations to all the Award winners, the many great sets in the Registry highlight the diversity and global nature of coin collecting, however it just shows how little I know about anything, and that there is so much left to discover. [my dissertation was long long ago, although I do have two on my desk at the moment that I am the examiner for!]
  3. ColonialCoinsUK

    Mansfeld Mystery Solved

    Thankyou both for the detailed history of Mansfeld, it is this historical context that I find fascinating as coins, with their changing design and production not only highlight the critical issues of the day but are sometimes the only tangible thing left to show that a person or place ever existed.
  4. ColonialCoinsUK

    Upgrade or new addition to the collection?

    I seem to have spent many pleasant hours going through the listings for the various January auctions and have identified 100's of fantastic coins that would be great to add to my collection. Unfortunately the reality of my available funds has now kicked in so 4 or 5, or maybe even just one missing coin is a more realistic proposition however this does present an interesting dilemma. Do I upgrade an existing coin or fill an empty slot in one of my sets? Even within the lower denomination coins, which I tend to collect, many issues do not appear very often at all in raw state and the graded examples, if there are any, even less so. As a result I am leaning towards the option of filling an empty slot. As my original collection was made up of attempted date runs of raw coins, typically in VF, joining the Registry has prompted some upgrades to nice AU/MS examples however as the numerical grade is often just 'opinion' l am less concerned about a minor improvement such as MS63 to MS64. As the vast majority of the sets in my collection have none, or only a few graded examples, the satisfaction of completing a Registry set is not yet a deciding factor. Due to the very low populations of many world coins there are also numerous sole top population coins available throughout January and these are very tempting - but which ones? As I will be bidding live I expect the realised prices and the relative dates the different auctions take place on will make the decision for me. An added complication with world coins is the order in the catalogue (Mexico is usually after France etc, unless the auction is also sub-divided by continent) so do I go for 'earlier in the alphabet' or save the money and hope that the later lots do not go for silly amounts and end up with nothing as happened in the Heritage sale earlier this week!
  5. ColonialCoinsUK

    NGC Upgrades NGC Registry - Available now!

    The initial pages are nice with the extra pictures as I for one was attracted to collecting coins not just for the history but also the designs. One of the aspects I found useful was the 'all coins/scores' page which was very helpful for building typesets as it made comparison of different dates and grades very easy. The new version has 'eligible coins' but you then have to look at each date individually for the scores, for a short series this is not a problem but for longer date runs such as British Victorian coinage this is a lot of work - am I just looking in the wrong place? I would also agree with another comment in that it would be nice to be able to see the first few lines of any text associated with a coin as the default setting.
  6. ColonialCoinsUK

    An unexpected challenge in collecting world coins

    The US, rather than their country of origin, does seem to be the source for a lot of quality examples of world coins including European gold - in my experience the coins of the Netherlands/Belgium are almost an exception in this regard with Schulman b.v. being the main source by far - it is great that you have been able to find them at home. As a result I do tend to buy many coins from the US and end up 'importing' them back! A few years ago the US was almost the only source of graded examples however there has been a noticeable change recently where sales at French (and Monaco), Swiss and Japanese and even some UK and German auction houses now have significant numbers of slabbed coins which certainly improves things however the populations for many issues are usually very low and I expect self-submitted coins will still form a large part of collections of graded world coins for a while yet.
  7. From a collecting perspective I made some more progress on my various graded British sixpence sets this year and actualy completed my first set - Edward VII - it is oddly satisfying to see 100 in the % column! Although only 9 coins most of these were bought ungraded long ago so it was nice to get MS grades for them all and I managed to pick up high grade examples to replace my circulated ones for the remaining coins. These included the 1908 from 'rmw', a member here, who sold much of his impressive collection of British coins via Heritage earlier this year - thank you 'rmw'. It is also starting to look like I may actually complete my Napoleon typeset at some point over the next few years, a mix of raw and already graded coins means that it now stands at 90%. I have a coin for one of the missing slots which I should really get around to sending to NGC although the remaining coins may prove difficult in anything above XF. I know I should save all my money for decent examples to populate these two slots and forgo everything else but there are a few top grade examples, with only one or two such coins known, in the January auctions for other sets I have plans to upgrade from raw so my resolve will be tested. All my other sets are a very very long way from completion so it will be interesting to see where they are this time next year but I expect the focus will continue to be on small world silver - a surprising challenge and more akin to my future budget, but probably more of a lifetime endeavour as graded populations are extremely low (or even non-existent) and the appearance of raw coins at auction is not much better!
  8. The recent thoughts by Revenant1 on their choices following the eventual appearance of not one but two examples of a long sought after 1877 Netherlands 10 Gulden coin prompted me to post my first journal entry although the nature of my dilemma is somewhat different. As a collector of world coins one of the challenges over the years has been to improve the quality of my collection, however, the number of suitable examples appearing at auction here in the UK is extremely limited with the consequence that most of my purchases are from auctions in the US and continental Europe with some from even further afield (e.g. Australia, Hong Kong and Japan). Although the Buyers Premium and shipping costs can vary dramatically between auctions they are known in advance, whether the purchase will incur import duty should also be considered in what is now very much a global past-time, however the recent biggest uncertainty is currency valuations which seem to be more eratic than ever. Having recently paid invoices in USD, Euros and Swiss Francs my dilemma is do I pay immediately to get the coin in my hands as fast as possible or wait a few days and hope the exchange rate moves in my favour? or risk it going in the wrong direction - as the £ seems to be doing a lot at the moment. As coins often provide a tangible insight into the ever-changing history of the world, coupled with (many) years between the appearance of some issues which then may or may not match availability of funds, I expect I will probably carry on regardless and live with the 'excitment' of the currency markets. I can not see myself returning to collecting only UK issues although I would appreciate a more stable exchange rate rather than having to contend with +/- 5% depending on the day of the week!
  9. ColonialCoinsUK

    Do you have any show stoppers

    Interesting thread and something I have considered a lot over the years whilst trying to put complete sixpence date runs together, and certainly during the search for missing die numbers for the years 1864 to 1879. Having discovered the NGC Registry this has been made even more difficult by now restricting it to graded coins (all my coins were raw up until a few years ago and the vast majority in F/VF although I have submitted the better ones to NGC). I expect that my Victorian set will remain incomplete as high grade 1854, 1863 and 1893 Jubilee Head issues are probably now 'show shoppers', at least from a cost perspective should an example eventually appear for sale, the top sets are definitely something to aspire to. My solution is that I now collect typesets! As an example I find the Napoleonic period extremely interesting, a date run of any denomination would be effectively impossible however my typeset, still a challenge, is slowly nearing completion. I hope the search for the remaining coins in good grades, and at reasonable prices, will not prove them to be 'show stoppers' although their value may require liquidation of much more of my collection in the coming years!