W.K.F.'s Journal

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A Question From & an Answer/tips to a Beginner Collector Here...



Beginning Collectors can NEVER be armed with too much info...Nor can those that have been collecting for a while.

Greetings Collectors,

During the last few weeks I have received an abundance of questions & comments from fellow collectors. I have saved their questions/comments and I have saved my answers/replies to them. Also just FYI I don't participate in the message chat boards, but anyone can comment on any post I make here by posting a journal of their own, or by contacting me directly. I have gazed into the chat rooms, but a good bit of the time, things get too heated & too nasty. So I choose not to get into the fray there. Anyway this is a question that was posed to me by Trey aka Sodarulz

Hello W.K.F.,

Sodarulz, a Collectors Society Member, used our contact form to send you the following message:

Hey Kerry thanks for the quick response.

I guess I'm just having a quantity over quality problem, and would rather look foward to getting alot of coins over the course of the month, rather than 1 or 2. I need to make more money lol. The investor in me is starting to regret starting a modern proof collection. Its cool to have but I'm scared I won't get my money back down the line, even if I'm only spending $4 dollars or so for ms69's.Do you think modern coins such as Silver Eagles or Silver Pandas are a bad move as well?

Also I have some older coins that I was thinking about sending off to NGC to be graded. If I post the pics would you let me know your honest opinion if they could be mint state quality.

Thanks alot for your time Kerry


I replied with the following tips:

Hello Sodarulz,

W.K.F., a Collectors Society Member, used our contact form to send you the following message:

Hi Trey,

Ten main things to always remember to do and not do.

ONE- Always go for QUALITY over quantity.

TWO- If you want to buy coins that will always increase in value, buy rare coins with low populations except for most modern issues. On those just don't buy them at all and you will always know you're not going to lose money. Except for a chosen few. BUT... if you like these coins, then by all means, collect them.

THREE- If you are a collector, just buy what you like. But if you're an investor, that wants to end up selling at some point for more than you paid, stay away from most modern coins except the special one of a kind issues with much lower mintage numbers, than other like coins. Start with the Silver Eagle Reverse Proofs (2006, 2011, 2012, & the 2013 West Point Two Coin Set with the Reverse Proof & the Enhanced Finish Silver Eagle) and maybe the 2008 Silver Eagle with the reverse of the 2007. Total mintage & populations are very important & always have been since the dawn of being a Numismitist. But if there are ten million collectors of a certain series, & there are only 20-30 thousand coins in a certain grade, of a certain year, this may not, in some collectors eyes, be a bad thing.

FOUR- In all modern stuff, if you're going to buy it, stay away and avoid like the plague all MS or Proof 69's Stay with the 70's if at all possible.

FIVE- Silver Eagles and Silver Pandas are nice coins & very good if you buy them raw and leave them raw. They're just way too many of them and if you buy them, only pay a very small premium above the one oz. silver value, if at all possible. This way you won't lose money in the long run. But in the long run, you'll make money on not only the coin, but on the silver value as well. Somewhat of a double positive.

SIX- You don't have to grade everything. Grading fees will eat you up unless you're getting a better date $10 piece of gold graded or a very old large cent or other nice older coin. Then have it graded if it hasn't been cleaned, whizzed, rims filed or it has any other problems like rim dings, scratches etc. There are numerous things that will cause a coin to come back in a Purple Slab with just a Details only grade. Study & know what to look for. Homework, research, homework, research, & more homework & research. Then study more! Have an expert take a look at the coin for any potential problems that would prevent the coin from a graded slab. But there's something about a raw coin that one can hold in ones hand. Preferably with a gloved hand/hands.

SEVEN- Never buy the slab, buy the coin (this goes mostly for older less common pieces) In other words, NEVER buy an ugly coin, even if the slab says the silver dollar or half dollar or quarter says MS-65 on the slab. Wait and buy a beautiful MS-65 even if its more money, because 10 years from now, that coin will be just as ugly, or just as beautiful as the day you bought it. It will NEVER look any different than when bought.

EIGHT- Always do your homework and research that which you're thinking about buying BEFORE you make the purchase. This is a key "MUST".

NINE- Don't try to collect everything. Pick out a series you like, then do massive amounts of research and homework before you buy. This is a must if you don't want to forever lose $$$ for paying too much for a particular coin.

TEN- Never follow the crowd, but pick a series with a strong collector base, is an important thing to consider before you start to collect anything. This way the market for your coins will most likely, always be there.

If you follow the above tips, you will make fewer mistakes. Also the old saying that if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. And sure, I'll be happy to look at your photos of coins and give you my opinion as to whether or not to have them graded. I'll email you some tips to take pretty good photos of your coins, inside with artificial light.

Take care & I hope this has helped some.

Happy Collecting,


This is one of several questions Trey wrote and asked me. I thought they were great questions for those just starting out, and also fo others that have been at this hobby for a little while. But not for Q. David Bowers and the like.

I think I will from time to time share other questions and comments by others.



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