Know your coins!

When you state in your service terms–“We Are Not Coin Experts!”–you open yourself up as a target for self-slabbers. If you don’t take time to know varieties, you’ll sell pricey lots for pennies on the dollar. Here are just a few examples. …

We just visited a new Proxibid auctioneer selling coins for the first time, and sure enough, he was hit with junk slabbed coins touting MS66 when those lots are graded much lower or not grade-worthy at all.

To the right is an example of a Morgan that has obvious wear, designated at a superb gem. The coin is not worth hundreds of dollars but slightly above $25 silver melt in our estimation. Click picture to expand.

You can trust PCGS, NGC, ANACS, ICG and, on occasion, PCI, Numistrust, and SEGS and a few others. Otherwise treat the coins as raw. Better still, learn how to grade by visiting PCGS Photograde (Tm) resource. (However, never misuse this service as this post warns.)

It also pains us to see auctioneers who know numismatics not inspecting their consignments to the extent that they should, as this example shows. Pictured below is a 1890-CC Tailbar. It’s described as a plain 1890-CC. The tailbar variety is worth so much more. Click picture to expand.

If you’re going to sell coins regularly, as this auctioneer does, and you are not going to take the time to know varieties, you’re just cheating yourself and your consignor. The auctioneer tradition requires keen knowledge of a wide range of antiques and collectibles. Start learning now by taking out a subscription to a numismatic publication such as Coin World or, if you do not want to pay a subscription fee, Coin Update News or any of the several free blogs that will enlighten you … and increase your bottom line.


Proxiblog is an independent entity with no connection to the auction portal Proxibid. Our intent is to uphold basic numismatic standards as established by the American Numismatic Association and the National Auctioneer Association and to ensure a pleasurable bidding experience not only on Proxibid but also on similar portals such as iCollector and AuctionZip.

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