Revenant

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About Revenant

  • Boards Title
    The Post-man always rings twice. Uhm... ring ring?

Personal Information

  • Occupation
    Fire and Gas Protection Engineer
  • Hobbies
    coin collecting, photography
  • Location
    Houston, Texas

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  1. Yeah. I totally agree on that. I remember when that $825 counter offer came back. I just shook my head and moved on. He was 150% over what I was thinking the real market value was and he was wasting my time offering a 6% reduction. There are a few other things I've been watching for a while and not seeing anyone go for them. Sometimes I'll see something that does look like a reasonable deal / price and I'll start to wonder if I'm wrong when it then sits unsold for months or even a year or more. But, at that point, if I'm okay paying that much and have the money at the time, I'm not sure how much I care. I generally don't buy with an eye to resell. But I just knew with this 1888 that paying anywhere close to that BIN price would be slitting my own throat on a value / resale basis.
  2. It would depend for me there. Sometimes I make an offer lower than I want and lower than I think they'll accept just to try - sometimes it has worked out for me. Recently I had a note I was hoping to get for $22.50 (Hoping mind you, but I was okay and expecting $25). I offered $20, they countered with $28, I offered $25 and they took it. I got the price I was orginally expecting, just not quite as good as I was hoping, we both look like we came off our numbers and I count it as a win.
  3. There's an odd lack of detail / definition in the area I've marked here. The 8 and the 6 do look funky... I'm not an expert in the series by any means, but I'd be suspicious. I think it's either fake or someone cleaned the hell out of it. The spot near the E and R in America really makes me wonder about cleaning.
  4. Some of you may remember from my post about getting my MS65 1888 in early 2018 that, at the time I won that coin, I’d only seen one other coin of that date come up for sale that had been graded by NGC. That wasn’t too surprising given that, at the time, only 20 had been graded by NGC and, even now, only 22 have been encapsulated by NGC. I don’t think I’ve ever bothered to check this before but PCGS has graded a total of 33. So, assuming there hasn’t been any that were cracked out and/or re-submitted without having the old labels sent in to have them pulled from the census, there’s at most 55 of these coins graded by the two major companies. Side note – but I’m a bit surprised that more of these have been graded by PCGS than NGC – I thought NGC tended to grade more World coins and had a better reputation with World coins but maybe collectors of this series prefer PCGS overall – or maybe they used to. It’s all hard to say for sure. That other coin was an MS-62 that the seller wanted $875.00 for. I watched that thing I think for the better part of two years, wondering if it would sell and wondering if the seller would drop the price if it didn’t – they never did. In early 2016 – before I got laid off a few months later - I tried to offer the seller $650 for it - more than reasonable I thought at the time (I think the price guide at the time put it at about $575 in MS63). They still wanted over $800 and counter-offered with $825. I passed. I had had a hard enough time just making that offer. I found the idea of an MS62 for that set fairly underwhelming. I really wanted MS65 or better for that set but I had been somewhat willing to accept it for that coin just because it was the key-date of the series. That coin continued to sit in their inventory – until it didn’t! it went poof one day and I never knew (but always wondered) if someone finally bit the bullet and paid what they wanted for it or if they just gave up and pulled it off eBay. Well… I think I might have found out! The other day I got an email for my saved search on the 10G series and it was an 1888, in MS62, in the same generation of holder as that one from before (they were both in the newer generation of holder with the edge-view and the prongs). I can’t remember 100% for sure - it’s been a long time, literally years - but I think it was the same seller offering it for sale too. Except now, it wasn’t not listed as a BIN for $875. It was selling in an auction and the starting bid price of $0.99. I guess, after about 5 years or so now, they’ve finally given up on waiting, wishing, and hoping they’d find someone willing to buy it at that price. It reminds me of something “Just Bob” said on the chat boards recently – “you have to remember that, for many series, 600 pieces extant would be a huge hoard.” Even with only 22 graded by NGC (I have no clue how many of the original mintage of ~35,000 survive to this day), if the collector base is shallow enough, as it seems to be with this set, an MS62 could still prove to be a cheap coin that can be had for near melt. “Rare” is relative and “rare” doesn’t always translate into “valuable.” Seeing this pop up like this immediately got my interest and my curiosity piqued. Obviously, my finances being what they are at this point, I have no interest in getting in on this. Even if I had the cash, I wouldn’t have to worry about bidding on this. I have the 1888 that I want already – fortunately this does not have to be salt in the wound right now. I got to watch this sell, never bidding, and smile the whole time, because I got to see what everyone else thinks this thing is truly worth. Even if I’m wrong and it isn’t the same coin or the same seller, I still got to see what this thing went for when the bidders get to set the price. (There’s only 6 graded by NGC in this grade, so I have at least a 16% chance I’m right, right?) I knew going in that it wasn’t going to get anywhere that $875 asking price of yester-year. Even the MS65 I got only pulled in $500, so unless in the last two years a couple of collects with deep pockets that feel a burning need to get one of these coins that’s graded by NGC this wasn’t likely to exceed $500. The end result? $327.75 after shipping (a hair over 37% of that old original $875 asking price). 15 Bidders made 25 bids. So, you can’t say that it flew under the radar or didn’t get much attention. It feels good to know / have it reconfirmed for me (as if getting the MS65 for cheaper wasn’t enough) that I was right to not go for this back in the day and that I was far from being alone in thinking that that asking price was too high. Always go with your gut. If it feels wrong, if it feels like too much, it is. If it feels like a bad buy, it is. If you aren’t 100% thrilled to pull the trigger / enter the bid / hit “buy,” don’t do it. In my experience, if you aren’t happy in that moment, it doesn’t get better. Now to go look at my MS65 1888 10G - which I still think is freaking awesome 13 months later.
  5. 1909 VDB, 1909 S VBD, wouldn't be surprised if the 1909 and 1909 S without the VDBs also gave you trouble from circulation. I would have a hard time guessing specifically from there but most of the other early S mint Lincoln cents are also really low mintages - some under 5 million - so I'd say those would be contenders.
  6. I actually find the CAC stickers just as unappealing and distracting as all the other stickers that sellers and dealers put on the slabs. I think the modern NGC holders make for a great presentation - I like them more visually than the old fatty holders. But those stickers are just an ugly distraction to me. Main problem: they're stuck on in odd places and at odd angles and to one side of the coin. They destroy the visual symmetry and balance of the holder.
  7. I have a group of little Whitman folders that I bought at Hobby Lobby. To the extent to which they're filled I've filled them mostly from searching rolls from circulation. I haven't tried to update them in 10 years or more. I've been trying to convince myself to go back and start looking for the new coins for them sometime. I just haven't gotten around to it.
  8. It's been years since I heard / read this, but a while back I read something saying that the mint had issued so many coins / designs in such a short period of time between the statehood quarters the ATB quarters, the Lincoln 2009 specials, the new reverse, the Jefferson nickel redesign, the presidential dollars... that some people were finding it hard to tell the difference between real and fake coinage - there were so many designs floating around in such a short period of time people just didn't know what was what anymore. Kind of crazy to think about really and it goes to show you just how much I think they've overdone it in the 21st century. In my last year of undergrad someone asked me if they could have a dollar to buy a scantron because they'd forgotten theirs at home, didn't have time to go back and needed to get to a test. Maybe I'm a sucker but I gave them the dollar - but it was a dollar coin. She took it at first, then stopped and asked me if it was a quarter or a dollar. I had to explain that it was a dollar. The mint has really just muddied the water in a bad way.
  9. At my last job I saw the writing on the wall but I didn't start looking because I'd been there less than a year - I didn't want to leave and look flighty / like a job hopper. I was hoping I could make it a year there. They laid me off after 9 months. I take my lumps but I try not to take them twice.
  10. Honestly I think sometimes you just have to take some time, breathe, let yourself feel kicked in the nuts and then move on from there. They, of course, have their reasons but other circumstances surrounding the situation that I can't really go into make this decision unacceptable to me in the long term. I honestly don't think they're doing this to be malicious, and it's a complicated situation, but I also can't just shrug this off. As Rick said, I'm not quitting and storming out, but I am writing a new resume this weekend and starting to put out applications. Given the nature of things I may still be there for another 6-8 months while I look in the background, assuming they don't let me go first - like I said, my gut says it's time to go based on everything I'm seeing.
  11. Well, we finally found out what the bonus situation would be at work… Yes. The thing that was supposed to be announced in January and then in February was finally made known to me in mid-March. Granted, I preface this with the fact that my dream of buying a double eagle (short of winning the lottery, which I suppose is still a possibility) died a long time ago, as did my hopes of paying off my student loans next month. My wife having to leave work 10 weeks early and that loss of income made that all a no-go. That said, they managed to exceed my worst expectations – no bonus and a minimal raise. I say minimal, any other time it might have been quite nice, but I’ve been taking on extra duties and I was due for a promotion to reflect that and they’re giving me none of it. This, combined with the loss of income, combined with the medical bills, are going to make things quite tight here in the short term, so, my collecting budget is basically going to be zero for a while now. Yeah… That plan for 2019 that I posted a few months ago? It’s torched. I’ll have to look back on it in a few years and laugh about how wrong I was. I still look back on some of my entries from 2016, from right before I got laid off, with some similar amusement in some cases these days. Having had a night to think about it, it’s far from the worst thing in the world (Note: This is distinctly not how I felt last night). It was a punch in the gut to be sure. It still feels like an insult. I can’t explain why fully, but I’m just not okay with this decision on their parts and it’s convinced me that I’ll be moving on as soon as I can find something. I’m planning to have a conversation with my boss about it, present some salary research and see if we can arrive at an understanding. But, even if they come up on the salary / raise, I don’t see myself staying. They’re sending signals that it’s time to leave while the getting’s good. That said, I’ve always been a careful and cautious person. I’ve always had liquid savings. I’ve never been the type of person that spends the grocery money on a hobby and makes myself eat ramen for a month. I think even now we’ll survive this well enough and I hopefully won’t have to sell anything I don’t want to sell. I’m almost afraid to say this because for the last 4 months it’s felt like everything that can go wrong does and life seriously has it out for me. I can’t fully escape the feeling that, in some ways, this feels like being punished for having kids. It’s almost like life / society (if you’re an American) punishes you for the decision to have children. In addition to making significantly more than the average American I have fantastic health insurance. Even with that fantastic insurance, Samuel’s birth and care is going to cost us about $3,000. For people that aren’t lucky enough to have that kind of insurance, a normal or “normalish” birth can cost $5,000-8,000 out of pocket – good luck if you’re uninsured. When Ben was born 3 years ago the billing for Shandy and Ben topped out at over $70,000. I just can’t imagine dealing with that. I always shake my head and laugh whenever I see these articles on LinkedIn and Facebook pondering the question of, “Millennials are waiting longer and longer to have kids and having fewer of them when they do! Why?” I think if you’ve had a kid in the last 10 or 15 years it’s no mystery. Having a kid today almost seems like electing to die penniless. Nevertheless – we need the kids. As a society, we need the kids. It’s written about on and on and on, but I feel like it’s becoming almost impossible raise one really. But, without them, you won’t have to worry about the future of this fine hobby, or much else really. For my part. Benjamin saw fit to remind me last night just why they’re worth it. I was crushed last night. I was bummed and stunned. I just couldn’t believe it in some ways, and I didn’t know what I was going to do about it. But my three-year-old wanted to spend the whole night sitting in my lap and had to give me extra kisses good night before bed. I have done something right with this kid in the last 3 years and he loves and adores me without a doubt. Ben will be 3 years old in exactly 2 weeks. Samuel is 1 month old today. He is now over 4 pounds and has gained over an inch in height since birth. Overall, he’s doing quite well, and he’s been moved from NICU3 to NICU2. He’s breathing room air without any assistance now (as of about 3 days ago) and he’s fed entirely with breastmilk and not with IV fluids (this has been the case for over a week now if I remember right). Continued head ultrasounds are showing that his ventricles have been growing and they’re worried that he might need to have a reservoir or a shunt put in to relieve pressure on his brain. So far, he isn’t showing signs of needing that and they’re waiting it out. The main signs that intervention is needed is if he starts having problems breathing or heart arrhythmias. I have been very happy to watch Ben’s excitement over Sam. He always wants to go see him at the hospital (though, I think at least some of this is because it’s a Children’s hospital with lots of cool things, but I don’t know if I care if it gets him to stop dreading going to the doctor so much). For those of you who have made it this far and aren’t ready to throw something, you have my thanks for tolerating what has been, at least in part, a self-indulgent whine.
  12. I think those marks on the Indian's cheek are going to hurt it pretty bad too.
  13. Revenant

    NGC TOO?

    I'm not saying you should like Carr, but, just in the interest of accuracy, those coins in the pictures in this post are not Mr. Carr's work. They're reproductions blessed by the Smithsonian.
  14. Hmmm... Maybe a 10 Trillion note then. That would sound about right for that one but I see most asking for more than that for the 50 Trillion and the 100 Trillion. And, yeah, they would have been the notes with the highest number of printed zeros in history except for the fact that they released the 100 Trillion at the same time, so that one took the prize. Yeah. Sounds about right, though I've seen some asking in the $200-250 range for ungraded uncirc 100 trillion notes. My point was more just that I'd initially thought $60 for a 20 Trillion was silly / over the top and apparently it's not based on the current market. My impression of it being over the top had come from a few years ago when I was getting them graded in 65EPQ or 66 EPQ for $25-30.
  15. In fairness to a seller that I have and now continue to do business with I think I need to take back my earlier assessment that they overcharged my wife when she bought that ungraded Zimbabwean 20 Trillion Note for $60. I guess the thing that should have been my first clue was that they’ve always offered returns and gave us a perfect, no-fuss return on the note and I’ve always been able to get very reasonable prices from them on so many other things, including most of my other Zimbabwe notes. In saying that they overcharged her I was thinking about what paid for most of my Trillions notes back in late 2015. It would appear, since that time, the Trillions notes specifically have appreciated in value. As I’ve been shopping around, I’ve seen other sellers asking that much for the note and some asking quite a bit more. I can’t find the records of the sale anymore, but I think when I bought my 100 Trillion note in 67EPQ a few years ago I paid about $35-40 for it. The other trillions notes that I have are 65EPQ or 66EPQ and I got them for about $20-25 if I remember right. The other day I saw one of the 100 Trillion notes in 65EPQ sell for $95 (+$6 shipping) with another recently getting $92 (+$8 shipping), putting the price around $100 for a 65EPQ. These weren’t BIN sales. These were auctions with the bidders getting to determine the final price. 65EPQs have achieved up to $142 recently after shipping and it looks like 66EPQs have achieved up to $170. A 67EPQ sold recently for $350, and, I won’t lie, that one shocked me. I am very glad that I bought examples of the Trillions notes when I did and got them for the kinds of prices that I did. If I was shopping for them today, I don’t think I’d ever be able to buy them. I could just never imagine or get behind spending the same amount on that 100 Trillion note that I did to get that 1886A 20 Franc - more than what I paid to get my long sought after 1877 10G. As it was, it was a stretch for me to pay what I did back in the day. I only did that to get a graded example and I wanted a high grade because that note was inevitably going to be a highlight / centerpiece of the set I was hoping to build. I feel like there is a crazy but cool message about subjective valuation here. A coin with 130 years of history and nearly a fifth of a troy ounce of gold vs a 10-year-old piece of paper with ink and a lot of zeros on it, but, to the right people, they can both be sold for $300+. Of course, I know there are people out there that pay $8,000+ for US Education Series notes and people out there that pay $100,000+ for 1932 double eagles, so maybe this shouldn't surprise me as much as it does. I think part of it for me is the fact that those old notes and coins are actually fairly rare. These 100 Trillion notes still seem almost as common as sand on the beach. You still see people selling even the 100 Trillion note by the brick. It's hard for me to wrap my head around that valuation when they're still seemingly just so excessively available. My wife has attempted to mess with my head by suggesting that I might want to sell the Trillions notes at these higher prices and use the money to pick up some gold coins - like an old British Sovereign or an 19th Century Italian 20 Lira, both of which are pieces I’d like to own. I’d likely be more tempted by this if not for the fact that I’m trying to build the set out more, note liquidate it, and getting rid of the Trillions notes would be quite a blow to the set. The higher prices are largely confined to the four Trillions issues (the 10, 20, 50 and 100 Trillion notes, P-88 through P-91) but the 100 Trillion issue in particular. Most of the other issues in the third dollar series can be purchased raw for a $5 or less and graded 65-67EPQ by PMG for $15-25 - barely more than the grading fees. That as much as anything is what threw me off at first. I was seeing low prices for everything else and what feels like moon-money for the Trillion series. But, clearly, for those notes, some people are willing to pay it. At $15-20 for a graded note I’m definitely a buyer of this series. I enjoy them and they’re worth it to me at that level. I feel like I don’t have to feel bad about spending it or worry about taking a bath on re-selling them later if I decide to. At $25-30 and above I have a harder time going for them. I have paid up to $40 for some first dollar issues in the past and I may do that again to get my hands on a few rarer, older, issues for that set when and if the time comes, but I don’t think I’ll ever spend much more than that for one of these. At that price, as my wife recently pointed out when we were talking, I can get some nice silver rounds and government bullion issues - sometimes already graded by NGC - and I feel like the silver content of those makes them a better value proposition over time – and, on the whole, I enjoy shiny metal more than paper.