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NEWP: Prethen bought a CLEANED coin?!?! Huh?

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Deliberately! Say what!


I thought the day would never come. I generally can't stand them. But, when the coin looks good, the price seems right, the cleaning isn't too harsh, and the stars align...


For those who buy coins from pictures, this should serve as a lesson (but I bought this one sight seen). The coin looks mark free and appears to be a choice+ UNC with great luster, but when you tilt the coin right, you'll see the hairlines which can dramatically reduce the grade and price.


I have quite a few dealer friends that I see all the time at shows. One of these dealers recently bought this 3CN from a guy at a show. The coin had been lightly cleaned on the reverse. You will likely not see the hairlines in this photo. I will experiment to see if I can't get the coin better photographed.


Of course, 1865 3CN's are as common as dirt. The die clashing on this year and even the strong strike are relatively common. This coin exhibits great luster and would probably grade out as a 63+ if it weren't for the light cleaning. The mark you'll see between the "I's" is actually a small planchet flaw that the camera and lighting happened to exaggerate worse than in hand.


I love the extremely nice strike of this coin (I need better pictures). You can tell they put the presses up to full striking pressure, hence the strong clashing. The clashing is strong on both sides. This is the first one I own that you can see (although not so well in the photos) the "I's" in the fields and even the vertical lines in one of them between her hair and her neck.


I bought the coin as an MS60 and paid $75. I think I did okay. It was too beautiful to pass up. Although, I showed this to another dealer friend who commented that he sold one "just like it" (with a cleaning) to another dealer for $50. Huh? I must admit that took me by surprise and makes mine look expensive. But, I don't know what his coin looked like in hand to judge it properly.



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Construct: The thing that really struck me about this piece is that the strike was killer. The reverse leaves really pop out at you. And, yes, those vertical lines in the "III" are as distinct as you can ever hope for. The hair is quite detailed at the top of the head and every bead in the coronet is quite distinct. That's why I couldn't let this coin remain in the dealer's case for someone else to pick up.


James: I had to laugh when I read your comment... contaminant-challenged! I never heard that phrase before. Yeah, sometime in its past, maybe a long time ago, someone had used a very mild abrasive (the dealer said it could have been a soap like a pumous with some small particulates) and caused some hairlining between the "I's". If you tilt it just right, you'll see them. They're by no means distracting as hairlines can be on some obviously cleaned coins. He noted that he's seen worse in "good" holders. Who knows, it might even get into a 61 or 62 holder. I won't try though....I absolutely hate getting bodybags!

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