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03 Sep 2020

Book Review: A Guide Book to Lincoln Cents

Collecting Tips | CentSearcher

Being primarily a cent collector, this was my first numismatic book. This one in particular is the 2nd edition, and I believe there is a 3rd edition out there. To sum up all that I am about to say, this is a great resource for beginners and experts that is well written and I highly recommend it. The book covers a lot of information in depth, starting with the history. Here the author explains the creation of the Lincoln cent, the different historical events that affected the series, and the public's reaction to certain designs, releases, and varieties. I found this part of the book very enjoyable and easy to read, because it is written in a chapter book format. Once the full history of the Lincoln Cent is covered, the book proceeds to discuss other vital aspects of Lincoln Cents, such as Grading standards, the minting process, and how to be a smart buyer. To close the book, there is 150 pages of analysis and market guide on the series. For each year and mint they include a high quality photo, mintage number, a price guide for each grade, notes on striking, sharpness, and errors, and an overview of what all happened that year. This sums up the main topics of the book, an overall it covers all the fundamentals of the Lincoln Cent series as well as a lot of detailed background information. I highly recommend this book if you are collecting Lincoln Cents, and if there are any other US coin series you focus on their is likely a Whitman guidebook for it just like this one. The book costs $19.95, and remember that ANA members get a 10% discount on the Whitman website. That is it for now. Happy researching, and keep on collecting! Your fellow Numismatist, Timothy

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03 Sep 2020

Coin Roll Hunting Pennies

Collecting Tips | CentSearcher

Whether you are looking for errors and varieties or just want to fill up some spaces in your collection, coin roll hunting will not disappoint. Pennies are the best denomination to start with in my opinion, as errors, wheats, and hole fillers are plentiful. One roll consists of 50 pennies, making it easy to search them in bulk. For me searching 10 rolls a week is continually increasing and upgrading my collection. As long as you keep low expectations, you are bound to be surprised.Acquiring the rolls is a smooth process as long as you (or you parents) have a bank account, and if you are polite. Take whatever they offer you, and do not be picky with what rolls they offer you. If you plan on returning on a weekly basis do your best to be a good customer. Now, if you do not have a bank account there are several alternatives. Before doing anything go ahead and check what change you have lying around the house. You can also get bags of pennies from customer service at Walmart and other stores. Most people also have a family member with a large mason jar full of pennies, and grandparents sometimes have some old coins lying around. Simple things like this could pay off eventually. Once you have you query, it is time for the fun part.There are a good variety of things to search for, though checking for every single error can be time consuming. What is nice about coin roll hunting is that you can have it fit your schedule the way you want it to. You choose how many rolls you search, how often you coin roll hunt, and what you look for. On top of that, it is risk free, for you get the exact amount of money as you give the bank, only in coins. I would still recommend to always check for the errors and varieties that I have listed below.Wheat Cents Perhaps the favorite coin to come across, wheat pennies can easily be found in circulation. Expect most that you find to be minted in the 1940s and the 1950s. There is no consistent pattern in which you find wheats, though I typically come across at least one every ten rolls.Hole Fillers & Upgrades It is a no brainer to search for the those years you need for your collection. But after a month of hunting or so, most of what you need will be pre 1950s, which is not consistently found in circulation. Upgrades will likely take up half of your finds by then, and one will almost always prefer the higher grade over their current worn coin. And even if you find a high grade older coin that you do not need, it would not hurt to hold on to it.Errors & Varieties Errors and varieties are hard to find in circulation, but once you stumble across one it is well worth the wait. It did not take me long before I found a pretty nice example of an off center cent. While there are dozens of errors out there, you should always search for the following:1. 1969 S, 1970 S, and 1995 DDO2. Close AM and Wide AM varieties3. 2009 Formative years DD hand4. Off center strikes and any other noticeable errorsLow mintages Of course, it would not hurt to hold on to a few of the lower mintage years. 1960 small date and the 1982 zinc large or small date coins could be semi key dates in the future.Once the search is complete you could either re roll them and return them to the bank or dump them into a coin machine that some banks have. If possible you should return them to a different bank, because I would not think a bank teller would want to hand you a thousand pennies just for you to return nearly all of them later. As a final note, there is a nationwide coin shortage because of Covid-19 so you might want to wait until it all blows over before you start your coin roll hunting.That is it for now. There are plenty of other resources on the internet and in books if you wish to go a bit deeper into the aspects of coin roll hunting.Happy Hunting, and keep on collecting!Your fellow Numismatist, Timothy

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05 Aug 2020

Show-n-tell “NATIONAL COIN SHORTAGE”

Collecting Tips | Haney

Like many of you I have seen the signs indicating there is a national coin shortage. That said I have a few items of encouragement for those of us who still collect coins by finding them.

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13 Jul 2020

eBAY Grab Bags......Trap or Treasure?!

Collecting Tips | AZCollector

Morning All,I would love to hear some insight and feedback on the infamous eBay grab bags, where do you stand?!AZ!

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09 Jul 2020

Coin Inventory Software: Review of Two Software Programs

Collecting Tips | I. R. Bama

Today I would like to share my experience in using software programs and sharing the pros and cons of each that I am using. I have two different programs EZcoin2 and Exact Change.

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01 Jul 2020

WW2 Numismatics "Top Ten"

Collecting Tips | Mr_Norris_LKNS

Noted numismatic author and specialist Mr. Fred Schwan has frequently listed his favorite Second World War collectible as the common Allied Military Currency (AMC) 2 Franc note. To him, this note represents "history in your hands", as so many of these went with Allied troops on D-Day, to allow a medium of exchange for commerce. These notes are fairly common and can be obtained in excellent condition for very reasonable prices, so it is not their rarity that makes them valuable; it is their connection to a tremendous event in history.

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30 Jun 2020

Using ANA to the Fullest: What Website Resources Do You Use?

Collecting Tips | I. R. Bama

There is so much to gain from on this website. I have only scratched the surface by reading blogs and commenting on other's blogs as well as writing a couple of my own.I was looking at the ANA Official Blog yesterday and spent a little time getting familiar with the library but I got the idea they aren't loaning books right now because of the virus. Maybe I got the wrong impression on that. There is a book they have I would like to see on varieties of Flying Eagle Cents.What other features do you all use and which do you all not care for much? And, of course, why do you like them or don't like them? What strategies do you use to get the most out of your membership?

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24 Jun 2020

Grading Coins, Next Question

Collecting Tips | I. R. Bama

So I've learned that Au 58 is a much better quality coin than MS 60- 62. How do AU55 and AU 50 compare to MS 60- 62?

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23 Jun 2020

So I Learn Something New Every Day

Collecting Tips | I. R. Bama

Some of you know that I am taking the ANA Diploma program. I finished the first course and now am into the grading class. I'm learning about technical grading vs. market grading. Technical grading considers luster, contact marks and to a lesser extent eye appeal. It is used for grades About Good to Extremely Fine. Market grading considers Luster, contact marks, strike and eye appeal, used for grades AU to Mint State. This is the type of grading the services employ when they grade your submitted coins. So it seems counter intuitive that technical grading does not employ stricter criteria to me due to the use of the term "technical".The other surprise for me was that an AU 58 coin is considered a much better coin than an MS 60 coin, and probably a better buy up until you hit MS 63. That also puzzles me, as it seems arbitrary, so I would I would enjoy hearing some discussion about that from the collective wisdom here.

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15 Jun 2020

I think I need a microscope

Collecting Tips | I. R. Bama

I'm just finishing up the first course of the Diploma program and one thing I picked up is that I'm going to need to buy a stereo microscope if I'm going to be any good at grading coins and down the road identifying counterfeits and altered coins. I did a little browsing on line and saw one that seemed suitable, but one of my better strengths in all of this is knowing what I don't know, so I'd like to hear from you all on your experience with these microscope s along with pros and cons of ones you have had or use... Please school me!

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