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Grading


Cherry Picker
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A few good books/magazines I like. First "Coin Grading and Counterfeit Detection" put out by PCGS. Good to see how they grade. Especially if sending some in. Only thing I don't care for is instead of repeating a description when similar they tell you look back for it. I guess they saved printing a few pages. And its kind of hit or miss on the pictures. Next Coin Values has an article on grading a specific coin each month. Has photos of several grades of each coin. Also high points are shown and where the worst points for contacts marks are for grading deductions. Bad side its hit or miss on what coin they are showing. Eagle Eye Rare Coins (PDF file) has a nice page on grading Indian Cents. Another way pick up NGC or PCGS graded coins in different grades for an in hand comparison.

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There is no easy answer to tell you. As mark pointed out there are books and magazines that can be very helpful. Everyone is continously learning how to grade coins, its a never ending education. No two people will grade it exactly the same. To a point, it's almost a guessing game. TPG's seem to change their grading on a whim. A coin they graded MS-65 4 years ago could be resubmitted and come back a possible MS-66? 67? or maybe a 68. The coin didn't change, but the grade might.

 

View as many coins as you can one series at a time until you learn how to grade a particular series. Once you can easily grade the series move onto another.

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Just concentrate on learning the 'circulated' grades first -- in time you'll graduate to the uncirculated grades -- then you're on your own!

 

So far circulated coins is all I have, so that works out. I just bought a Morgan off E-bay (sorry but im not aloud to use the forums yet.! would much rather buy from you guys & gals) May need a opinion when I finally do recieve it.! It has now been 3 weeks & counting.. Payed thru pay-pal though..

Anyhow, it sounds like the grading of coins is very much like the grading of stamps.! PSE has changed there standards (most dont know this) & if the past graded stamps was re-submitted now, they would not recieve the same grade... That is if you didn't report that they had previously graded it.! (Some Guarantee)

Anyhow, thanks for the info, sounds like several good places to start..

 

Cherry Picker.

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As already noted, not an easy thing to answer. It appears that even the grading services fluxuate on what a coin is graded as. So many times I've heard people say they take a coin graded by PCGS and resend it to NGC or somewhere and it comes back different. At coin shows the dealers that have their coins in 2x2's all have thier own grading systems since a coin that to me looks AU to them it is MS anything from 1 to a 1,000 if that were possible. I'm still waiting for the grading systems to go to 100 after the letters so that you could have a EF-93 or EF-75, etc.

If you buy enough books on grading you may get close to what you think a coin is but when you check others you may find out it is completely different.

Old saying: Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder.

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The ANA Grading Guide Is a great book on grading. It has helped me and I think you would like it. You can always go to the book store and read it.

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