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Clump

Dot or pin prick on new proof sovereign

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Hi, I've gone nuts and bought a UK gold sovereign set for mostly for long term investment reasons. Never bought gold or some coins before. They all seem very nice and everything (bit surprised how small they are), but the half sovereign has a small dot on it. There is a dot or pin prick on bottom right of it the size of a full stop. I don't know if this is normal for a proof coin. Never even heard of a proof coin a few days ago. Maybe it is to be expected from the minting process. Maybe a "bag mark" or something. This dot can be seen from 8 inches from most angles once you know that it is there. I could still send it or the whole three coin set back but just want to be armed with some information in case they try and fob me off. It is a 2019 half sovereign four sided coin bought from Hattons of London.arse.jpg

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Hi, I've took some more pics but this is the best I can get with my cheap smartphone camera. Almost all the marks in these photos is the plastic protective case. It's just that tiny spec in the bottom right I'm concerned about. I don't know if these coins are supposed to be 100% perfect or 99.9% perfect??

 

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little advice

invest in a webcam they are much better then cell phone cams and can get close up pics easy

i use a old webcam for my coin pics and a photo editor for my coin pics

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Welcome to the forum!

Something that pops out at me immediately is you said you bought this set "mostly for long term investment reasons".  Proof coins carry a premium over their bullion counterparts as they are generally minted for the purpose of collecting for the art of them, rather than for investment.  There are a few things you need to consider regarding this set.

The set would consist of the quarter, half and full sovereign, if I am not mistaken.  Now, the first thing is that these coins are not bullion quality specimens.  Bullion would normally consist of .999+ fineness, or 24 karat gold.  These sovereigns are "coin gold" which is a lesser fineness of roughly .917 or 22 karat gold.  So, there is roughly 8% less gold in these coins than what you would have buying bullion.

Looking at the weights of these coins, you have 2g + 4g + 8g for a total of 14 grams of 22 karat gold.  So, that comes close to 12.825 grams (.412 troy ounces) of pure gold.  With the current spot of gold at $1285US per ounce, that puts the value of the gold in this set to roughly $530US.  Seeing Hattons' site selling the sovereign alone at £699...this gives you a good idea of what kind of investment this actually is.

And, if you were collecting these for the art of them, I personally would find a blemish on them to be unacceptable at that price.  These coins have a low mintage, but that kind of rarity does not necessarily add to the value of the piece when it comes time to sell it.  In fact, these sovereigns appear to be on par of the many Liberian gold and silver coins which have a very limited secondary market.  These sovereigns were authorized by a British Overseas Territory, Tristan da Cunha (a remote island in the far south Atlantic) whose population is approximately 250 as of the end of last year.

I personally believe that Hatton's presentation on their site of these coins is just a bit misleading, too.  The British Sovereigns are indeed 22 karat coins, but the Britannia is a pure (24 karat) bullion coin weighed by the troy ounce or fractions thereof.  You can even order these directly from the Royal Mint.  Looking at their site right now, a Gold Britannia costs $1357.38US.  That's almost two and a half times the weight in gold as the set you have.

Anyway, I hope all of this helps you.

Now, with regards to the coin itself in question, I agree with Corina that it is hard to tell for sure what may have caused it.  It could even be a chip in the die used to mint them.  From the mintage numbers, I am sure they probably only used one set of dies to produce the entirety of the coins they produced.  Also, no coin minted that I know of has ever come from a mint with any guarantee that the specimen will be perfect, or even error-free.

Stick around and read up in the forums to learn more about coins.  You can even use the search feature to search threads that talk about proofs to learn a bit more about those particular types of coins.

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Thanks for your help Corina and SMS,

This is all an interesting learning experience. Whilst I did say I bought it for mostly investment purposes, it is also bought them because I don't own any jewellery or gold and fancied having some for once in my life. Also they seem somewhat unusual being four sided. I did at time of purchase calculate the gold value and it was about £450. On the other hand I have seen "similar" 21st century three coin sets on the usual popular second hand markets and see prices within +/- 20% of what I have bought. Anyway I plan on keeping them for decades. Just a bit of fun to see their value significantly increase.

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Now, with regards to the coin itself in question, I agree with Corina that it is hard to tell for sure what may have caused it.  It could even be a chip in the die used to mint them.  From the mintage numbers, I am sure they probably only used one set of dies to produce the entirety of the coins they produced.  Also, no coin minted that I know of has ever come from a mint with any guarantee that the specimen will be perfect, or even error-free.

Still not sure I should send it back. Maybe I would end up with another one with the same. I'll better have a word with Hattons..

 

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6 hours ago, Clump said:

Still not sure I should send it back. Maybe I would end up with another one with the same. I'll better have a word with Hattons..

I would probably not attempt to exchange it unless they have a specimen that doesn't have the apparent defect.  If it is a die chip, it can tentatively be on a number of coins.  I believe they claim to be the sole primary distributor for these coins as well.  So, they would be able to tell you if this "dot" is on all or a number of the coins they have in stock.

Unfortunately, looking at their site, I notice that they are only offering the quarter and full sovereign...no half or 3-piece sets.  I would believe they may have run out of half sovereigns?  If so, then they may not be able to make an exchange.  Best of luck to you!

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