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Back To My Numismatic Roots

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After some recent frustrations with registry sets slots, I have decided to take a hiatus from Grading coins, submissions, NGC vs PCGS and even removed almost all of my Registry "competitive" sets.

The frustration has long been building with the politics in the hobby and not just with trying to get through the myriad of confusion associated with collecting any modern series and their innumerable annual issues. Whether it is SP's listed as MS or as PF's, multiple slots for the same coin but with different names, incomprehensible points assignments ( 2000 points for some $50 coins and 300 points for some $1000 coins) or Pop report/census that only even lists about 25% of an entire series--the fun in registry participation has been sapped away.

However my love of the hobby remains. This is why I have gone back to my roots--album collecting and raw coins. With my coin cabinet and chests with their velvet lined drawers allowing for better viewing, displaying and the weighted feel as I hold the coin in hand, I wonder why I waited so long. I think it was probably half because I enjoyed the sets listed on a page where I could add photos and had easy access to see which slots were needed no matter where I was. The other reason I stayed was the camaraderie among several members here that I PM on occasion, buy/sell/trade with and have been messaging with for years.

Most recently I found an old Whitman Mercury dime album with about 12 coins in it. What fun the past few weeks have been !! Although not as challenging as the old days when I tried filling albums with just the selection from the 2 local coin stores--it is still a lot of fun searching for a certain look, a minimum standard ( full reverse rims and some vertical fasces lines) and hedging on some coins to hold out for a little nicer or a few bucks cheaper.

I have re-discovered the thrill of passing up a $12 AU coin which I almost bought, and then later uncovering a $10 BU coin instead--saved $2 and a nicer coin, WIN ! The only downside is that I'll have to learn some improved restraint. As opposed to slab collecting where I may buy a pricey, graded coin once or twice a month- with the album collecting, I can add dozens of nice, quality coins for the same or less the cost.

My most recent exciting purchase was a very nice set of Merc BU coins with "several toned" coins from 1940-1945 all PDS complete. The listing was vague and the picture so-so of a single, torn out page from a thumb buster. I won the "page" of toners for just $30 ( barely more than melt). Once in hand- WOW what excitement to find that most had glorious colorful tones and 75% were BU. The 1945 even has strong separation of the midline although not complete. I picked through and have mixed and matched with some "pristine white" coins and interspersed several of the toned beauties ( the rest I carefully removed and put in flips in my coin chest to enjoy.)

Unfortunately, I am down to the 1916-D and the 1921 and 21-D to complete the set. Most of the teens and early 20's are in F/VF quality and all of the 1935-1945 coins in AU or BU. I feel at liberty to change parameters or grade limits per page in the album as I please so I've kept every coin pretty cheap to buy.

I've never collected a shield or liberty nickel set and think I might start that next with mostly "readable date" and " problem-free" coins in lower grades but with honest wear. After that maybe a Morgan "short set album of XF/AU grades--who knows it sure is a lot less complex now and no disappointments for bodybags, perplexing grading results, massive shipping both ways or 17 to 20% buyers fees!

Some photos of my recent assemblage which has reinvigorated my collecting passion. Happy Hunting E1......



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Yeah, my Uncle was banned for what he says is his fault but was NEVER slapped, warnings or strikes. I've request help from moderators and NGC. Not one response. My Uncle had begged me to stop using NGC to what he thinks will protect my future in numismatics. I guess the powers at be just hate me due to relation to the one that should not be named. There's more to a man than one inappropriate post followed by an apology. I'm new, as of this past Christmas but I'm beginning to see his point. Taking coin collecting "back to the closet" as he says is looking better and better. I'm clueless how he used to spend hours a day on this site.

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I'm really torn on my collecting future. Still love the hobby but I have been buying more raw coins recently. I don't have anything against either NGC or PCGS, neither one has ever done anything to me. The have to make a profit. They need to do something about the journals. Since the change the traffic has slowed to a crawl. I thing the majority of collectors find the new system confusing. It's a shame, I really enjoy reading all of the entries. I have registry sets but am not one of the big hitters so for the most part registry changes don't affect me. They are there more for my enjoyment. When it comes down to it most of us are just collectors. Enjoy your collection, who cares how many points it is worth.

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Yeah, Ive noticed slow traffic as well, but in my case more understandable as Im not collecting US.

And as for your sentiment Chris B about enjoying your collection, I agree 100 percent. That's the point of it.

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I hear you Jackson. I've also been moving that way slowly but surely. It seems that recent events are hastening that move for me these days. At any rate, I am consolidating my collections to those that I really enjoyed when I was younger. My focus today is my theme based custom and type sets. All the best, let us know how it goes for you. Six or seven years ago I stuffed a Mercury Dime folder and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. After stuffing the album and with my photograde guide I set out to grade the dimes. What fun! Oh BTW, I still have that Mercury Dime album and I periodically take it off the shelf to look at it.


Edited by gherrmann44
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From time to time I have had some difficulty in getting registry sets for Britain properly set up. In those cases, rather than acting passively I called NGC to try to get things corrected and to refer them to the Standard Catalogue of British Coins or other standard references, which, it was plain, were not being used. I know they have the Standard Catalogue now and have got the corrections I was asking for. Numismatics for world coins is a vast subject and it is hard to keep track of 26 centuries of making coins. Sometimes help or a nudge is what is needed.

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