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What did you buy first, the book or the coin?

ZoinsZoins Posts: 33,735 ✭✭✭✭✭

What did you buy first, the book or the coin?

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  • RB1026RB1026 Posts: 1,467 ✭✭✭✭
    the book

    Actually bought a small retail coin guide in a grocery store as a kid before I ever purchased my first coin. (To be fair, I wanted the guide to figure out what coins I had been given by my grandparents from their change jar) I was about 8 years old and it was around 1976. Got my first Red Book in 1982.

    Since then, I've bought a LOT of books and a good number of coins and have learned the value of information ;)

  • koynekwestkoynekwest Posts: 10,048 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the book

    A 1962 Red Book.

  • ZoinsZoins Posts: 33,735 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited April 29, 2021 2:41AM
    the book

    d'oh! I voted wrong. Serves me right for voting while I was half asleep!

    I have to say that a big reason why I didn't feel like I needed the book is:

    • CoinFacts.com & PCGSCoinFacts.com
    • Google Books: H&K, Alaska Tokens, etc.

    Eventually, I did purchase Rulau's token reference.

    I do miss the mintage figures and commentary in the original CoinFacts.com. I wish they were able to keep that.

  • OKbustchaserOKbustchaser Posts: 5,412 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    @ShaunBC5 said:
    The coin, then the book, then more coins...hopefully with better results.


    Just because I'm old doesn't mean I don't love to look at a pretty bust.
  • OldhoopsterOldhoopster Posts: 2,930 ✭✭✭✭✭


    I started saving cents when I was 6. My Uncle gave me the Whitman folders and let me take some Wheaties that I needed whenever I visited. He also gave me an old redbook. I also received coins as Christmas and birthday gifts. It was about 4-5 years before I bought anything with my money and by then I had a couple redbooks and a blue book. I also had a copy of Spadone's Variety and Oddity of US Coins (4th edition I think) that came in a Sears Coin collecting kit (Remember those in the catalog) that I got one Christmas. Too bad the binding fell apart

    Outside of those, there weren't many books that were useful to new YNs in the 70s. I traded with a friend for a copy of Modern World Coins by Yeoman. The first book I ever bought with my own money was Coins of the World 1750-1850 by Craig around 1980. I had picked up a few 18th and early 19th century coins out of junk boxes and wanted to ID them. Wen I was a Sr in HS, I traded an 1886 G4 V nickel to a dealer for 1982 Krause World Catalog. At the time, Krause only had 1 volume.

    Member of the ANA since 1982
  • JimnightJimnight Posts: 10,592 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    It was the coin first.

  • rickoricko Posts: 98,724 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    Definitely the coin.... When I started 'saving' coins as a kid, I did not know there were books on coins... Of course, that changed later on. Now I have a small library of coin books... And the Mega Red and CPG's are always next to my computer. Cheers, RickO

  • hchcoinhchcoin Posts: 4,821 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    My interest was kindled by my uncle and grandmother with a few small gifts, driving my bike to the bank to roll search, a neighbor with whom I could trade coins and cards, then magazines I saw at the grocery store that I convinced my mom to buy, and finally a red book a few years later.

    My first big boy book was the Overton book after @BustDMs helped my son get his first bust half dollar and then my interest just took off as well. If it wasn't for Brad I don't think I ever would have become interested in die varieties and reading coin books. He opened up a whole new world of coin collecting for me and my boys that actually re-ignited my passion. Searching for die varieties felt a lot like hunting for treasures in coin rolls when I was a kid. You just never know what is going to turn up at any time. The thrill of the cherry pick is also a strong motivator.

  • OnastoneOnastone Posts: 3,681 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    Used the coin to buy the book, used the book to find the coin, so many coins-so little time.

  • BuffaloIronTailBuffaloIronTail Posts: 7,340 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I bought the magazine first. Salivated at the coin picks, then ran to my local coin shop.

    I was too young to drive....................


    "I tell them there's no problems.....only solutions" - John Lennon
  • TreashuntTreashunt Posts: 6,746 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    The coin, then as a pre-teenager, I rode my bike to the library to take out the Red Book.


    BHNC #203

  • WCCWCC Posts: 2,188 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    For my current primary series, I bought my first coin slightly before the first reference. For most of the coins I own, there is no reference. I don't consider a price guide with invented fictional prices (like Krause) a reference.

    More recently, one of my books presents a reasonably accurate representation of availability, though maybe not actual scarcity. That's the information I have been lacking during my most recent iteration as a collector since I resumed in 1998.

    However, my experience is not going to be representative of most here since I don't buy any US coins.

  • jesbrokenjesbroken Posts: 8,713 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    Collected coins from change and the bank for years before buying my first coin, in the mid 70's, a 1932 D Washington Quarter from Mel's Coins in Johnson City, TN(whom I later purchased the 1932 S from). It took me a few coins to realize I needed to own a redbook rather than borrowing a redbook. Coin magazines were available at my local barbershop along with hundreds of comic books double stacked 3' deep in the floor. Loved those haircuts. lol

    When a man who is honestly mistaken hears the truth, he will either quit being mistaken or cease to be honest....Abraham Lincoln

    Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it.
  • mr1931Smr1931S Posts: 5,757 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the book

    Some advice I got long ago that I've taken to heart is: Never invest your money in something that you don't understand.

    It stands to reason that "The Book" helps one understand about the coin or coins that captures one's interest. Buy the coin book first and pay attention to what the expert has to say. One book might be better than another but one figures that out as one proceeds on their coin collecting journey.

  • CoinscratchCoinscratch Posts: 7,438 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    The Coin no doubt. I read the manual only after the problem.

  • BillyKingsleyBillyKingsley Posts: 2,661 ✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    Always the coin. The book is for when you want to learn more.

    With that said I genuinely enjoy reading about some things I'll likely never even see in person let alone own so I have more than a few books that are about coins but stand alone.

    Billy Kingsley ANA R-3146356 Cardboard History // Numismatic History
  • djmdjm Posts: 1,557 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the book

    Because of the word buy, then it was the book. I had acquired coins at no cost long before I bought the book.

  • astroratastrorat Posts: 9,221 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    @OKbustchaser said:

    @ShaunBC5 said:
    The coin, then the book, then more coins...hopefully with better results.


    This. This.

    Numismatist Ordinaire
    See http://www.doubledimes.com for a free online reference for US twenty-cent pieces
  • CryptoCrypto Posts: 3,120 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    I befriend the person writing the book and people who collect the series. Except one, I pick one hobbyist (& their alts) and berate them incessantly for sport while always looking for the next coin to buy.

  • johnny9434johnny9434 Posts: 27,022 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    the coin and the fact there was more wheat's and silver coin in circulation at that time

  • ctf_error_coinsctf_error_coins Posts: 15,267 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    The coin. I learn from the coin. I learn from the internet.

    I have bought and sold tens of thousands of individual coins.

    I think I have 3 or 4 coin books with no plans on buying anymore :o:o:o

  • TiborTibor Posts: 3,004 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the book

    I picked up A. Frey's book on early dated European coins as an addition to my library. The next year at the Atlanta ANA I bought my first coins. Haven't looked back since.

  • ashelandasheland Posts: 22,211 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    Both, usually I see the coin, buy it, then want a reference for it... :)

  • WalkerfanWalkerfan Posts: 8,671 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited April 29, 2021 10:48AM
    the coin

    Coins and then books followed in short order.

    “I may not believe in myself but I believe in what I’m doing” ~Jimmy Page~

    My Full Walker Registry Set:


  • BillJonesBillJones Posts: 33,042 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the book

    With U.S. coins, I was given the book, "The Red Book," for Christmas in 1959.

    So far as my British and ancient coins go, I bought the book. The ancient coin books cost me over $300. I had only one coin, and I had purchased that in the 1960s.

    Retired dealer and avid collector of U.S. type coins, 19th century presidential campaign medalets and selected medals. In recent years I have been working on a set of British coins - at least one coin from each king or queen who issued pieces that are collectible. I am also collecting at least one coin for each Roman emperor from Julius Caesar to ... ?
  • MrweaseluvMrweaseluv Posts: 209 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited April 29, 2021 11:13AM
    the book

    Well I start with the Red Book.... then coin/coins... Then if my interest is great enough add a more informative book on the specific series/coins...

    You may soar with the eagles, but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines!.

  • WAYNEASWAYNEAS Posts: 6,123 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    The coin. It was an impulse buy.
    Quickly ran out and got my Redbook soon after.

    Kennedys are my quest...

  • lkeneficlkenefic Posts: 7,482 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    Technically, I was given the book (mid-1960's Red Book) first so I didn't have to buy it... but reading it when I was 8 years old was a different matter altogether! Especially when there were all these cool old coins in circulation that could be "bought" for face value...

    Collecting: Dansco 7070; Middle Date Large Cents (VF-AU); Box of 20;

    Successful BST transactions with: SilverEagles92; Ahrensdad; Smitty; GregHansen; Lablade; Mercury10c; copperflopper; whatsup; KISHU1; scrapman1077, crispy, canadanz, smallchange, robkool, Mission16, ranshdow, ibzman350, Fallguy, Collectorcoins, SurfinxHI, jwitten, Walkerguy21D, dsessom.
  • HydrantHydrant Posts: 7,773 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    The coin(s): first. Then if I get interested and start thinking about spending serious money I buy the book(s).

  • GazesGazes Posts: 2,315 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the book

    I seem to find an interesting coin book and then want to collect that series.

  • LRCTomLRCTom Posts: 857 ✭✭✭
    the book

    Early on, my collection was all coins from circulation. I bought several Redbooks and a Brown and Dunn grading guide before I ever bought a coin.

    LRC Numismatics eBay listings:

  • USSID17USSID17 Posts: 1,264 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Any questions? ;)

  • oldabeintxoldabeintx Posts: 1,463 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the book

    I voted "the book". I collected coins well before I bought any books (pre-clad period), but I bought books before PURCHASING any coins. I had to at least have a Redbook and went on from there as I expanded my collecting interests. Things are different today, a great deal of free information is out there, but not so much as one specializes and gets deeper into one's area of interest. Plus, books give me a lot of pleasure, represent much more than a reference.

  • yspsalesyspsales Posts: 2,025 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    Well, technically I was reading a Coin World in the library before buying 3 DDO 1995 Lincoln cents for about $200 each.

    BST: KindaNewish (3/21/21), WQuarterFreddie (3/30/21), Meltdown (4/6/21), DBSTrader2 (5/5/21) AKA- unclemonkey on Blow Out

  • koynekwestkoynekwest Posts: 10,048 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited April 29, 2021 5:02PM
    the book

    Technically my first numismatic book was the Vol 2 folder for Lincoln cents, 1941 to date, not the 1962 Red Book. In any case it was the book before the coin. I filled that folder halfway with cents from the cash register of the gentleman I bought the folder off of. This was in the summer of 1961.

  • ChangeInHistoryChangeInHistory Posts: 2,970 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the coin

    I looked through several coin magazines and made some cheap mail order buys when I was around 9. Got back into the hobby, did make some bigger coin buys before reading up, but learned quickly.

  • ZoinsZoins Posts: 33,735 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the book

    @ErrorsOnCoins said:
    The coin. I learn from the coin. I learn from the internet.

    I have bought and sold tens of thousands of individual coins.

    I think I have 3 or 4 coin books with no plans on buying anymore :o:o:o

    I'm waiting for you to write 100 Greatest Modern U.S. Coins ;)

  • pursuitoflibertypursuitofliberty Posts: 6,357 ✭✭✭✭✭
    the book

    Not at first, way back when in the 1980's ... but I had amassed a small library over time. And when I came back this time, it was because of the books that I kindled the passion anew and found new directions I wanted to follow.

    “We are only their care-takers,” he posed, “if we take good care of them, then centuries from now they may still be here … ”

    Todd - BHNC #242

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