Explain the fascination with toning

So as much as I find toned coins to be pretty in some instances, I can't for the life of me figure out why it adds any value to a coin when the underlying aspects of the coin (strike, grade, etc) are exactly the same as a non toned coin, especially when toning means that the coin was not properly cared for or stored in order to get toned, which is basically silver or copper tarnish. Not sure why someone would pay multiples for toning over the coin itself.

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  • toyz4geotoyz4geo Posts: 833 ✭✭✭

    @Ronyahski said:
    Eye appeal.

    Yep.

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  • oldabeintxoldabeintx Posts: 327 ✭✭✭

    IMO if toning appears original it speaks to the originality of the piece. If attractive to my eye, that's a bonus. However, I'm of the same mind that pretty toning is overrated. I have paid a decent premium myself, but not multiples over coins that are otherwise equal. Seems very faddish to a 60+ year collector, but whatever keeps the hobby robust.....

  • 3stars3stars Posts: 646 ✭✭✭

    @MattTheRiley said:
    Because nice toning is rare.

    To me, that's like saying a nice rust pattern on a 65 Mustang makes it worth more. Nice rust patterns are rare as well.

    To be fair, I hate overdipped blast white coins as well, they just look too fake and not as intended. Give me an honest looking coin anyday!

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  • FairlanemanFairlaneman Posts: 10,064 ✭✭✭✭

    To me it shows, in most cases, the coin is original.

    Ken

  • SmudgeSmudge Posts: 3,032 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Most silver turns ugly when it tones. Not rare but not common either when the colors turn nice without help.

  • WildIdeaWildIdea Posts: 1,258 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @3stars said:

    @MattTheRiley said:
    Because nice toning is rare.

    To me, that's like saying a nice rust pattern on a 65 Mustang makes it worth more. Nice rust patterns are rare as well.

    A good check in question.

    Not sure about mustangs, but in the current classic VW split window and bay window bus world a German original paint bus is most prized, and original paint patina and a few untouched rust holes are also prized and gaining value. Something with good ol honest wear. A shame so many of them have been cut up to add windows and sanded down and repainted, maybe throw out the original interior and install buckets because people think they’ll make more at sale. Refinished and reworked buses look sharp to the untrained eye, I don’t know what they bring, I suppose someone pays well for those too. Only original once and a redo is a redo and isn’t German so basically doesn’t count to a purist.

    I like coins with certain types of toning. If the look is right and not a faux-tina, I can see a coin bringing multiples. Sometimes a coin develops a look that defies belief and the odds, excentuating the design elements, sparks the imagination and separates it from others of its type.

    Long ago, to get my head around it, I asked some guys into green verdigris ancients their take on toning cause those things have barnacles growing on them and they seem to love em.

  • CCGGGCCGGG Posts: 630 ✭✭✭✭
    edited January 11, 2019 5:11PM

    In general I don't like any toned coins at all. I'd go as far to say (and have said) that TPGS should designate toned coins as environmentally damaged. New coins don't leave the mint toned. (unless maybe they sat in a mint vault a really long time).

    I'll admit, there are some toned coins (but very few) that in my opinion look pretty cool. However, I'll take an original blast white MS coin over any toned coin any day of the week. And I'd certainly never pay anywhere near sheet for a toned or dirty looking coin. When I see toned coins at a show, I just keep on walking.

    To be fair, I would pay melt value for most toned coins. :)

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  • KellenCoinKellenCoin Posts: 975 ✭✭✭✭

    It's mostly about eye appeal. Some people think toning is pretty, and want to have pieces like that in their collection.

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  • KeithMS70KeithMS70 Posts: 89 ✭✭✭

    A toned coin tells a story or history of the coin.

  • RexfordRexford Posts: 452 ✭✭✭✭

    Besides plain old eye appeal, toning provides a variable aspect of collecting that just collecting by type or other specifics does not. There are no series of US coins that have not been collected, and in most cases heavily collected. Collecting coins by type or date is discouraging since there is not much you can do that has not already been done over and over again and with much better success by other people, especially if you have a limited budget. Toning provides an opportunity to build collections in a way that no one has done before, each and every time you buy a coin, because each toned coin is toned differently. A collection of $200 coins with amazing toning is unique in a way that a collection of type or date coins can never be, unless one is willing to spend many multiples of that number per piece.

  • BaleyBaley Posts: 20,613 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @TomB said:
    One of the great things about numismatics is that you don't have to understand the fascination that some have for one niche segment or another. A second great thing about numismatics is that you aren't forced to buy, collect or pay for someone else's fascination.

    Well said, and true of everything. Every day I see cars and houses and clothes that cost 2 or 3 or or 5 times what mine did, and don't understand why, but someone likes them enough to pay up.

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  • JustacommemanJustacommeman Posts: 18,007 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited January 11, 2019 7:12PM

    @TomB said:
    One of the great things about numismatics is that you don't have to understand the fascination that some have for one niche segment or another. A second great thing about numismatics is that you aren't forced to buy, collect or pay for someone else's fascination.

    @Baley said:

    @TomB said:
    One of the great things about numismatics is that you don't have to understand the fascination that some have for one niche segment or another. A second great thing about numismatics is that you aren't forced to buy, collect or pay for someone else's fascination.

    Well said, and true of everything. Every day I see cars and houses and clothes that cost 2 or 3 or or 5 times what mine did, and don't understand why, but someone likes them enough to pay up.

    Boom.

    mark

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  • astroratastrorat Posts: 7,886 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Justacommeman said:

    @TomB said:
    One of the great things about numismatics is that you don't have to understand the fascination that some have for one niche segment or another. A second great thing about numismatics is that you aren't forced to buy, collect or pay for someone else's fascination.

    @Baley said:

    @TomB said:
    One of the great things about numismatics is that you don't have to understand the fascination that some have for one niche segment or another. A second great thing about numismatics is that you aren't forced to buy, collect or pay for someone else's fascination.

    Well said, and true of everything. Every day I see cars and houses and clothes that cost 2 or 3 or or 5 times what mine did, and don't understand why, but someone likes them enough to pay up.

    Boom.

    mark

    Boom boom.

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  • 3stars3stars Posts: 646 ✭✭✭

    @KeithMS70 said:
    A toned coin tells a story or history of the coin.

    Such as it’s life in s Taco Bell napkin for the last year. Toning is too easily faked to tell any history of the coin. Bad doctors are obvious, it’s the good ones you can’t tell if it’s natural or not.

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  • WCCWCC Posts: 69 ✭✭

    Most of the coins US collectors buy are either common or incredibly common. In the internet age, new challenges have been invented to create "rarity" from something which isn't remotely rare. That's what toning, much die variety collecting, designations such as FS on Jefferson nickels, the highest TPG grades and the seemingly endless variety of different errors represent. Otherwise, in the most widely collected US series which most US collectors buy, the whole series could often literally be completed in one day in a quality (including "high" quality) which most collectors traditionally would have found acceptable in the past. Many others which are somewhat or even much scarcer could be completed in a few weeks or months.

    The traditional (as in prior historical) collecting practices are both no longer sufficient to maintain buyer interest and can't be used to justify the current inflated price level. The collectors who own these coins and the financial promoters from industry both have a vested interest in increasing or at least supporting a stable price level.

    Personally, toning is a priority for me where I consider it consistent for it's age and known circulation pattern. So for example, I definitely prefer it on the 18th and early 19th century coins I buy while it isn't important for the 20th century series. However, I'd never pay an inflated premium for an otherwise common coin, regardless of what it looks like. I can't definitively predict it will be an economically losing proposition but I know it is a relatively poor numismatic value for the money where there are much better coins to buy for the same or less.

  • ZoinsZoins Posts: 17,133 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited January 11, 2019 9:24PM

    It's about eye appeal and rarity.

    Why do people pay for art which can be just oil on canvas? Toning can be beautiful and it adds to enjoyment of the coin. Just looking at a well toned coin makes you feel like you're looking at a piece of art.

    Regarding rarity, compared to original pieces of art, many coins are very common, there are just a lot minted. Even in great condition, for some coins, there are more than a handful of similarly graded pieces. Toning can be unique which adds to the sense of exclusivity and the notion that you won't get another chance to own such a beautiful, and thus enjoyable, coin.

  • JustacommemanJustacommeman Posts: 18,007 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited January 11, 2019 9:35PM

    I just love collectors who “covertly” try to run down toned coins and those that collect them. It’s a blessing not everyone collects toned coins. If you think the premiums are high now imagine what they would be if that were the case.

    mark

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  • After all, eye appeal is part of the grade. To me its fascinating and hard to see the MS68 under all of the color but, color is also typical of 68.

  • rln_14rln_14 Posts: 369 ✭✭✭

    I prefer blast white coins, some toned coins are very nice, like subtle colors, other very harshly toned coins that looks like dirt, corrosion of rust, while beautiful to some are ugly to me, but everyone like different things, keeps everything interesting. Imho

  • Josh32Josh32 Posts: 91 ✭✭✭

    ALL coins will start to tone immediately after the minting process, some at a very fast rate. All of the blast white coins now will be toned in the next couple hundred years. It's just a chemical reaction and can't be stopped. I think toning is a sign of originality and shows that a coin hasn't been dipped. I'd rather have a toned coin instead of a blast white coin.

  • ACopACop Posts: 1,017 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @3stars said:

    @MattTheRiley said:
    Because nice toning is rare.

    To me, that's like saying a nice rust pattern on a 65 Mustang makes it worth more. Nice rust patterns are rare as well.

    To be fair, I hate overdipped blast white coins as well, they just look too fake and not as intended. Give me an honest looking coin anyday!

    An unfinished 65 mustang would look closer to rust pattern in color if the raw material metal wasnt painted.

    image
  • OldIndianNutKaseOldIndianNutKase Posts: 1,857 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Toning is the very natural reaction of the base metals of which coins are minted over time. And while copper, silver, nickel and gold all react with environmental elements over time, toning is inevitable. Coins over 200 years old ALL have significant toning. Coins less than 50 years old should not have significant toning, but there can be exceptions. Great toning on moderns is rare, and lack of toning on coins over 200 YO is impossible.

    OINK

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  • johnny9434johnny9434 Posts: 18,397 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I don't mind toning as long as it has good eye appeal and no over abundance of fugly toning. fwiw

  • BAJJERFANBAJJERFAN Posts: 28,919 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Josh32 said:
    ALL coins will start to tone immediately after the minting process, some at a very fast rate. All of the blast white coins now will be toned in the next couple hundred years. It's just a chemical reaction and can't be stopped. I think toning is a sign of originality and shows that a coin hasn't been dipped. I'd rather have a toned coin instead of a blast white coin.

    I wonder how many people could sit and look at every coin in a set of Morgans if all were blast white and looked exactly the same.

  • Josh32Josh32 Posts: 91 ✭✭✭

    @BAJJERFAN said:

    @Josh32 said:
    ALL coins will start to tone immediately after the minting process, some at a very fast rate. All of the blast white coins now will be toned in the next couple hundred years. It's just a chemical reaction and can't be stopped. I think toning is a sign of originality and shows that a coin hasn't been dipped. I'd rather have a toned coin instead of a blast white coin.

    I wonder how many people could sit and look at every coin in a set of Morgans if all were blast white and looked exactly the same.

    Might be a bit boring.

  • koynekwestkoynekwest Posts: 4,756 ✭✭✭✭✭

    jwitten, that's just about the prettiest Indian gold I've ever seen.

    I've moved away from doubled dies and other die varieties to a large degree and these days concentrate on high color naturally toned coins for my collection.

  • topstuftopstuf Posts: 11,630 ✭✭✭✭✭

    How come quarter Eagles tend to color more often than other denominations?

  • giorgio11giorgio11 Posts: 2,894 ✭✭✭✭✭

    It's numismatic art!

    Kind regards,

    George

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  • edwardjulioedwardjulio Posts: 46 ✭✭✭
    edited January 12, 2019 2:17PM

    Eye appeal adds value?

  • CommemKingCommemKing Posts: 1,835 ✭✭✭✭✭

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  • SkyManSkyMan Posts: 8,047 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @3stars said:
    ...Not sure why someone would pay multiples for toning over the coin itself.

    With all due respect, why would someone pay more than face value (or bullion value) for a coin?

  • ZoinsZoins Posts: 17,133 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited January 12, 2019 3:15PM

    @SkyMan said:

    @3stars said:
    ...Not sure why someone would pay multiples for toning over the coin itself.

    With all due respect, why would someone pay more than face value (or bullion value) for a coin?

    Agree. I often think of this for common coins willing for high amounts. I think a lot of coins that cannot be sold at true auctions have a lot further to fall.

  • fiftysevenerfiftysevener Posts: 274 ✭✭✭

    Some toning is like putting a mask on..... it can hide flaws. Then again even colorful toning is stunning to me. This quarter is Pf 67.

  • rickoricko Posts: 63,084 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Tarnish on coins is environmental damage... whether it occurs naturally or imparted artificially. At one time, it was distasteful... now it has become desirable by many, to the point of paying premiums. That is why there is a plethora of artificial tarnish. Such a shame. Cheers, RickO

  • ZoinsZoins Posts: 17,133 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited January 12, 2019 4:30PM

    @ricko said:
    Tarnish on coins is environmental damage... whether it occurs naturally or imparted artificially. At one time, it was distasteful... now it has become desirable by many, to the point of paying premiums. That is why there is a plethora of artificial tarnish. Such a shame. Cheers, RickO

    Artificial toning is an undesirable side-effect of the interest in toning... just like dipping can be an undesirable side-effect of interest in white coins. Where there's a dollar to be made, there can be a coin to be ruined.

  • rickoricko Posts: 63,084 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Zoins... So very true.... premiums follow fads....be it fashion, art or coins. Cheers, RickO

  • jwittenjwitten Posts: 3,077 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @topstuf said:
    How come quarter Eagles tend to color more often than other denominations?

    I've noticed this as well, and have no idea why.

    @3stars said:

    @MattTheRiley said:
    Because nice toning is rare.

    To me, that's like saying a nice rust pattern on a 65 Mustang makes it worth more. Nice rust patterns are rare as well.

    To be fair, I hate overdipped blast white coins as well, they just look too fake and not as intended. Give me an honest looking coin anyday!

    A better comparison would be if the factory made EVERY mustang white, or black. Sure, they would be nice, but wouldn't one with a little color be BETTER?? lol

  • ZoinsZoins Posts: 17,133 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @jwitten said:

    @3stars said:

    @MattTheRiley said:
    Because nice toning is rare.

    To me, that's like saying a nice rust pattern on a 65 Mustang makes it worth more. Nice rust patterns are rare as well.

    To be fair, I hate overdipped blast white coins as well, they just look too fake and not as intended. Give me an honest looking coin anyday!

    A better comparison would be if the factory made EVERY mustang white, or black. Sure, they would be nice, but wouldn't one with a little color be BETTER?? lol

    Sounds like the iPhone!

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