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1916-d mercury

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Hi, just jumped to here from "across the street at pcgs". My oh my I don't know how i'll find the time to cruise this board also. Anyway I recently submitted my 1916-d to NCG mainly to be assured that it was genuine. It came back as AG-3. Comparing it to photograde and redbook it seems to grade a good-4 in all areas except the wear on the reverse is slightly below the top of the letters. My question is do most grading companys grade a coin on overall condition or is it strictly technical. Thanks, Mark

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My question is do most grading companys grade a coin on overall condition or is it strictly technical.

 

Hi. What is ``overall condition'' vs ``strictly technical''???

 

IMO, it is proper to offer a strictly technical grade based on the overall condition of a coin. Even eye appeal plays a role in determining the grade (and, hence value) of a coin.

 

Most people think of NGC when they think of ``market'' grading that relies on exceptional eye appeal. But, eye appeal is one of the big four factors used by PCGS in determing the grade as well. (It's in the grading book!)

 

EVP

 

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Mark,

 

Do you have the capability to photo or scan the piece? If so, post a pic and we could take a look at it for you. At that grade, the rims are generally the key, and many raw pieces are represented at a higher grade than they really are.

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  • Member: Seasoned Veteran

In my opinion, all of the traditional grading guides are flawed when it comes to circulated Mercury Dimes. I wrote a book on this series a few years ago, and it became clear to me that the reverse of this coin type wears much more rapidly than the guides suggest, so that a coin having a full obverse border may have a reverse with the border worn well into the tops of the letters.

 

I published a photographic grading guide in my book that reflected what I was actually seeing in the coins, and it prompted a few complaints from those who believed I was attempting to lower the standards. I dared these people to find a Mercury Dime in Good that actually matched the photos of both obverse and reverse in the traditional grading guides, and they couldn't. I still stand behind my conclusion that these books are too conservative with respect to the grading of this coin type's reverse.

 

As for the specific coin in question, I didn't see it, and I'm not an NGC grader, so I can't comment.

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Having published a book on the subject, you certainly don't need me to confirm your observations - but I will anyway!

 

I just purchased a 16-D NGC G-4, and I could very well apply your remarks to the coin. A very nice obverse with full rim and very clear crisp date. Wear creeps in uniformly around the outer reverse diameter.

 

But, even so, I am delighted to have located and obtained the coin.

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David, it's been a while since I looked at your book on Buffalo Nickels. What is your opinion about the grading standards of those coins in circulated condition, notably VF and below?

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Swhuk,

 

I believe the published standards for circulated Buffalo Nickels are valid, and the grading guide in my book is in keeping with the ANA's grading book.

 

The only sticking point concerns full horn coins. As you may know, many Buffalo Nickels had weak horns or were lacking the tip of the horn, as made. Such coins are graded on the basis of overall wear, and it's not unusual to see a scarce date such as 1921-S or 1924-S certified as VF even when lacking the tip of the horn. My feeling on this is that they may indeed qualify as VF, but I would prefer to wait for a better struck example that has the tip of the horn visible. Such coins are scarce, but they are available for all issues in this series with a bit of patience. Of course, for the problematic dates, full horn coins will likely command a premium over the figures in most price guides.

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Mr. Lange:

 

I strongly disagree with the way that NGC, PCGS and all the other grading services grade key date circulated coins. In the old days a VF Mercury dime had to have all of the vertical lines showing the ax. Now a VF coin only has half of them showing, which used to be the VG standard.

 

It's a shame that the grading services have done this, but nothing that we consumers can do about it except pay lower prices for each grade. That's exactly what has happened. $1,200 on the Gray Sheet for a 1916-D Mercury dime seems low, but a VF is not what it used to be.

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