This year I decided to put some Lighthouse cases on my Christmas list just to try. My interests and wants are pretty narrow these days. And, while I don’t really want a lot of stuff that is just going to collect dust and not mean much to me on a practical level, I don't like others buying me Coins for reasons we all know. I thought it was worth a shot to put some supplies on my list with easy links to what I want. I also put some things like miniature props - mini trees and grass mats for mini photography but it seems like the coin cases and coin supplies won out.
My wife got me the 24-coin, 3 panel case that I wanted for the Zimbabwe coin set. She seems to share my determination for elevating this economically-ill-advised set (that will never be worth what I'm about to spend on it) to something with a near mythic level of importance - so now the case for holding the set that we've mostly picked together and which will be almost all self-graded is a Christmas present 🎁.
Speaking of "almost all self graded," if I can get an MS64 or better at least 10C out of the coins I'm going to send in - and I think I have that easily - that first coin may get bumped just to have the main set be 100% coins we picked and graded. I DO have some real serious contenders that I think might score in the MS65-67 range from the pre-steel-clad era. So there is a real chance this could happen, including a nice 1980 that would be redundant in the set at first glance, but it would be self-submitted with the same invoice number as many other coins in the set.
When I opened the box, I was briefly afraid we might have to return or exchange it. The box showed an image with coins in capsules and capsule panels, not panels for graded coins. But when I opened it the box had the right inserts. I was worried I'd added the wrong thing to the wish list, and it was going to be my fault her surprise got... deflated. But - bullet dodged.
I’m thinking the top panel will have the oldest coins, the middle panel will have the Bond Coins, and the base will have most of the steel-clads, so when I pull the panels out and lay them next to each other I can deploy the panels in a pretty, chronological order. Initially I was going to just pop in the coins I have and fill in what I can, but then I stopped and thought it might be more fun to wait a few months, and let it sit empty until I get the 2nd submission back and can fill it all in - see it for the first time in all of its "glory." I do think it will be impressive, if not valuable or a good investment, but, good gosh, I'm strange for building this one and doing this in such an over-the-top way, aren't I?
My wife also bought more cotton gloves and a bunch of flips as stocking staffers- but I got them in a wrapped box because the sticking was... too stuffed. More supplies and support for more coin searching!
My step-father got my name again (3rd year running) in the name draw and followed up with a 25-coin case that I think will now be the new home for the gold coins - giving me more room again and removing the need to split them into a 2nd box for now. I'd gotten a temporary reprieve on this earlier in the year by pulling 5 out to display at my desk.
All of this has given me an idea for a present for my step-father down the line. I think I want to give him one of these that shows/ holds 6 coins for displaying the 1932 set.
This year, I got my step-father two coins I found for the 1982 mint set we started years ago. They're not particularly nice grades by the standards for modern coins but they filled some old, stubborn gaps with gem uncirc coins. After sitting on these for weeks, I finally popped them into the 1982 registry set after I gave them to him at dinner last night.
In my searching I also found some 1958 coins that would have filled more holes at reasonable prices but I'd already spent my budget. So a few weeks back I quietly linked and referred these to him - just not bringing up the 1982 stuff - and he got them. Then, just a few days prior to Christmas he messaged me to say he'd found and bought a coin that filled the last hole in the 1965 SMS set. So, somewhat accidentally, because of some things I did and set in motion with my Christmas shopping, that's 5 more slots filled across 3 of those sets.
None of those sets is likely to ever be in the running for #1, but one of them is now complete and maybe one day the other 2 will be too. The 1958, the 1982 and 1983 remain the hold-outs there.
As a final item, my brother got me a copy of the book "When Money Destroys Nations," about the Zimbabwean Hyperinflation.