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Grading Whimsey: Put into words a good definition of the MS-60 grade.

I have been posting in the "Commercial Grading" discussion. Perfessional members say that a grade cannot be defined p[recisely enough to have a standard, I disagree, Let's start out with an easy grade, MS-60. Yeah, yeah, MS-60 does not exist anymore as I have not seen that grade on a slab in years. So what. I'd like to read what you think the characteristics of an MS-60 coin are (general, no particular coin type). Hopefully, I'll bet we can agree on this one. LOL, I'd lose so let me add that the coin you are describing is Mint State but only a 60. No sliders allowed. Describe its luster, marks, and eye appeal. does the strike matter for an MS-60? Everyone welcome especially grading seminar students/instructors, Professional graders and dealers and these members posting in that discussion:

@FlyingAl
@MarkFeld
@jmlanzaf
@Rexford
@CaptHenway
@Catbert
@1nsider3
@Goldfinger
@PerryHall

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Comments

  • RobertScotLoverRobertScotLover Posts: 584 ✭✭✭✭

    Depends on the era, which era are you referring to?

  • jacrispiesjacrispies Posts: 711 ✭✭✭✭✭

    There are different grading standards depending on the series.

    You don't see bust dollars chattered up with contact marks and you don't see morgans unchattered with a little surface friction/rub.

    Early US is, in my experience, graded by amount of rub and hairlines (mostly rub). An MS-60 would probably be a technical AU-58, because there would be significant rub for a mint state coin. Since net grading is more prevalent with early material, an assigned MS-60 likely means is a problem mint state coin. Over dipped, old cleaning, moderately scratched, etc.

    More modern coins, such as the easy to grade Morgan dollars, are graded by contact marks. Although seldom seen, patches of hairlines would likely details a coin rather than net grade it. An MS-60 coin would be undoubtedly mint state, but chattered to the moon and back. MS-60 silver dollars can be found, with other series less common in MS-60 simply because they were not held and transported in mint bags as much.

    "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord" Romans 6:23. Young fellow suffering from Bust Half fever.

  • MFeldMFeld Posts: 12,020 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Married2Coins said:
    I have been posting in the "Commercial Grading" discussion. Perfessional members say that a grade cannot be defined p[recisely enough to have a standard, I disagree, Let's start out with an easy grade, MS-60. Yeah, yeah, MS-60 does not exist anymore as I have not seen that grade on a slab in years. So what. I'd like to read what you think the characteristics of an MS-60 coin are (general, no particular coin type). Hopefully, I'll bet we can agree on this one. LOL, I'd lose so let me add that the coin you are describing is Mint State but only a 60. No sliders allowed. Describe its luster, marks, and eye appeal. does the strike matter for an MS-60? Everyone welcome especially grading seminar students/instructors, Professional graders and dealers and these members posting in that discussion:

    @FlyingAl
    @MarkFeld
    @jmlanzaf
    @Rexford
    @CaptHenway
    @Catbert
    @1nsider3
    @Goldfinger
    @PerryHall

    I’m unable to do what you’re asking.
    But apparently, you think it’s easy to do, so please proceed.
    Then describe an MS61 and an MS62. I bet you can’t provide precise enough distinctions necessary to be able to assign those three grades accurately on a consistent basis.

    Mark Feld* of Heritage Auctions*Unless otherwise noted, my posts here represent my personal opinions.

  • jmlanzafjmlanzaf Posts: 31,845 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited February 20, 2024 4:56AM

    @MFeld said:

    @Married2Coins said:
    I have been posting in the "Commercial Grading" discussion. Perfessional members say that a grade cannot be defined p[recisely enough to have a standard, I disagree, Let's start out with an easy grade, MS-60. Yeah, yeah, MS-60 does not exist anymore as I have not seen that grade on a slab in years. So what. I'd like to read what you think the characteristics of an MS-60 coin are (general, no particular coin type). Hopefully, I'll bet we can agree on this one. LOL, I'd lose so let me add that the coin you are describing is Mint State but only a 60. No sliders allowed. Describe its luster, marks, and eye appeal. does the strike matter for an MS-60? Everyone welcome especially grading seminar students/instructors, Professional graders and dealers and these members posting in that discussion:

    @FlyingAl
    @MarkFeld
    @jmlanzaf
    @Rexford
    @CaptHenway
    @Catbert
    @1nsider3
    @Goldfinger
    @PerryHall

    I’m unable to do what you’re asking.
    But apparently, you think it’s easy to do, so please proceed.
    Then describe an MS61 and an MS62. I bet you can’t provide precise enough distinctions necessary to be able to assign those three grades accurately on a consistent basis.

    I agree with Mark.

    And, to be precise, the issue is less about whether one COULD define such a standard, difficult though it might be, and now about whether anyone HAS DEFINED such a standard narrowly.

    Consider the PCGS definitions

    MS60 "No wear. May be poorly struck with many heavy marks or hairlines. "

    MS61 "No wear with average or weak strike. Multiple heavy marks or hairlines allowed."

    MS62 "No wear with average or below average strike. Numerous marks or hairlines."

    Do I really have to explain all the complexities involved?

    1. Where is the line between "poorly struck" and "weak strike"?
    2. Where is the line between "below average" and "weak"?
    3. Where is the line between "multiple" and "numerous "?
    4. When does a mark become heavy rather than light?
    5. Does a light mark in a prime focal area get more attention than a heavier mark in a non-focal area?
    6. Does "no wear" include minor rub or cabinet friction?
    7. How do you balance strike vs marks? If I have a "poorly struck" coin (whatever that means) with "numerous marks" is it 60, 61 or 62? What if it slightly above average strike with a LOT of heavy marks?
    8. What if the obverse is 62, assuming we can define that, and the reverse is 60?
    9. What if the reverse is 62 and the obverse is 60?
    10. Add your scenario here.

    You THINK it can be defined definitively because you have an image in your mind. But your mental image is neither universally accepted nor universally applicable.

    You picked what you think is an easy grade to define but it's actually one of the harder ones. The more marks present, the more unique the distribution of those marks might be. Some heavy, some light. Some in prime areas, some hidden near devices. That's why most dealers and price guides don't make much distinction between 60, 61 and 62 for most series.

  • logger7logger7 Posts: 8,069 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I've had some coins come back as MS60 and thereabouts recently. It did not circulate. Does not have the wear or rub of a circulated coin but can appear to be damaged though not badly enough to details grade.

  • FrazFraz Posts: 1,824 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited February 20, 2024 5:38AM

    Wait, Is someone thinking about, a coin? Yes I’m getting an image of this coin, who in the audience is thinking about a 1967 half-dollar coin?

  • jmlanzafjmlanzaf Posts: 31,845 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Fraz said:
    Wait, Is someone thinking about, a coin? Yes I’m getting an image of this coin, who in the audience is thinking about a 1967 half-dollar coin?

    That looks better than a 60. ;)

  • BillJonesBillJones Posts: 33,479 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited February 20, 2024 6:41AM

    An technical MS-60 is a coin that has no rub or wear, and many marks and otherwise distracting features that take away a good part of its eye appeal. Such coins are actually very scarce because usually when that much as gone wrong with an otherwise Uncirculated coin, there is almost always a rub. I will pay more for a very attractive AU-58 than an ugly MS-60.

    This 1839-D quarter eagle was graded MS-60. Part of the issue with it was that it was not well struck. I believe that the flat spot in the hair above Ms. Liberty's ear is a strike issue, not wear.

    Here is a professional photographer's take on the same coin.

    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 ... ?
  • FrazFraz Posts: 1,824 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @jmlanzaf said:

    @Fraz said:
    Wait, Is someone thinking about, a coin? Yes I’m getting an image of this coin, who in the audience is thinking about a 1967 half-dollar coin?

    That looks better than a 60. ;)

    I thought so too, but I don’t qualify. I looked for a bogus holder for a laugh. It’s poorly listed as:

    1967 United States Half Dollars - CCCS MS60 - 0079810
    Buy it now around $10.00

    Not bad for a rare slab, but I would check the cert no.

  • coastaljerseyguycoastaljerseyguy Posts: 1,243 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I agree, MS60 is probably the hardest MS grade to define as @jmlanzaf noted above, how many bagmarks, where located, how deep, luster, eye appeal, etc. Well if a picture helps, here is mine, although being in an NGC Gen 6 holder (graded 95-97) it appears conservative and might be a 61 or even 62 today.

    The strike is bold, but the obverse has numerous marks/scrapes and the reverse luster is muted on some areas of the eagle, not sure if due to the reused reverse of 78 die.

  • MFeldMFeld Posts: 12,020 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @coastaljerseyguy said:
    I agree, MS60 is probably the hardest MS grade to define as @jmlanzaf noted above, how many bagmarks, where located, how deep, luster, eye appeal, etc. Well if a picture helps, here is mine, although being in an NGC Gen 6 holder (graded 95-97) it appears conservative and might be a 61 or even 62 today.

    The strike is bold, but the obverse has numerous marks/scrapes and the reverse luster is muted on some areas of the eagle, not sure if due to the reused reverse of 78 die.

    It looks like a 61+ to me. But I couldn't arrive at that estimated grade based upon a written description ("standard") for grades 60, 61 and 62 - I need to see what the coin looks like.

    Mark Feld* of Heritage Auctions*Unless otherwise noted, my posts here represent my personal opinions.

  • ms71ms71 Posts: 1,459 ✭✭✭✭✭

    No wear, decent luster, otherwise a train wreck.

    Successful BST transactions: EagleEye, Christos, Proofmorgan,
    Coinlearner, Ahrensdad, Nolawyer, RG, coinlieutenant, Yorkshireman, lordmarcovan, Soldi, masscrew, JimTyler, Relaxn, jclovescoins

    Now listen boy, I'm tryin' to teach you sumthin' . . . . that ain't an optical illusion, it only looks like an optical illusion.

    My mind reader refuses to charge me....
  • oldabeintxoldabeintx Posts: 1,632 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @ms71 said:
    No wear, decent luster, otherwise a train wreck.

    Not sure luster is a requirement.

  • TimNHTimNH Posts: 127 ✭✭✭

    @FlyingAl said:
    A coin that is better than AU58 but not as good as an MS61.

    I disagree, there are some gorgeous 58s, but 60s always look like crap. I'd go further and say 60 is the worst grade of all, none of the 'story/history/charm' of a circulated coin, and none of the eye appeal of an UNC coin. If I had one of these I'd carry it around til it was a 58.

  • MFeldMFeld Posts: 12,020 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @TimNH said:

    @FlyingAl said:
    A coin that is better than AU58 but not as good as an MS61.

    I disagree, there are some gorgeous 58s, but 60s always look like crap. I'd go further and say 60 is the worst grade of all, none of the 'story/history/charm' of a circulated coin, and none of the eye appeal of an UNC coin. If I had one of these I'd carry it around til it was a 58.

    I'm virtually certain that by "better", @FlyingAl meant in terms of a higher numerical grade, even if less desirable than many AU58's.

    Mark Feld* of Heritage Auctions*Unless otherwise noted, my posts here represent my personal opinions.

  • FlyingAlFlyingAl Posts: 2,845 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @MFeld said:

    @TimNH said:

    @FlyingAl said:
    A coin that is better than AU58 but not as good as an MS61.

    I disagree, there are some gorgeous 58s, but 60s always look like crap. I'd go further and say 60 is the worst grade of all, none of the 'story/history/charm' of a circulated coin, and none of the eye appeal of an UNC coin. If I had one of these I'd carry it around til it was a 58.

    I'm virtually certain that by "better", @FlyingAl meant in terms of a higher numerical grade, even if less desirable than many AU58's.

    This is correct. My comment was mostly made in jest, as there is really no “fits all” definition.

    Young Numismatist, Coin Photographer.

  • coastaljerseyguycoastaljerseyguy Posts: 1,243 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Unfortunately there are some graded AU58's that are dogs also, at least for Morgans. Just search EBAY for the key dates. They are sometimes dipped, MS61-62's that at first glance could never pass for uncirculated. This is 1 grade that definitely needs tightening up.

  • BStrauss3BStrauss3 Posts: 3,158 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Woof

    Technically Mint State, but fell out of the ugly tree and hit several branches on the way down.

    -----Burton
    ANA 50 year/Life Member (now "Emeritus")
  • skier07skier07 Posts: 3,682 ✭✭✭✭✭

    There are 12 MS 60 coins in the upcoming SB Fairmont auction. I’m assuming these coins were graded recently or when SB first acquired the hoard in 2018.

    This coin has a nice look to it and JA apparently likes it. Whether it should be in a 58, 60, 61, or 62 holder I’ll leave that to the professionals or folks more knowledgeable than me.


  • ctf_error_coinsctf_error_coins Posts: 15,433 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @FlyingAl said:
    A coin that is better than AU58 but not as good as an MS61.

    Usually an AU 58 coin is "better" than MS 60 or MS 61 graded coins.

  • jacrispiesjacrispies Posts: 711 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @skier07 said:
    There are 12 MS 60 coins in the upcoming SB Fairmont auction. I’m assuming these coins were graded recently or when SB first acquired the hoard in 2018.

    This coin has a nice look to it and JA apparently likes it. Whether it should be in a 58, 60, 61, or 62 holder I’ll leave that to the professionals or folks more knowledgeable than me.


    I thought that coin was more appealing than an MS-60 when I first saw it. I can see MS-61 justified because of the strong appeal. Either that or knockout AU-58. Not a wild price difference between the two so I believe either grade could work.

    "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord" Romans 6:23. Young fellow suffering from Bust Half fever.

  • Insider3Insider3 Posts: 260 ✭✭✭
    edited February 20, 2024 5:29PM

    @RobertScotLover said:
    Depends on the era, which era are you referring to?

    IMHO, this is the kind of nonsense that will only confuse the OP and anyone else without your knowledge. In fact I'm seriously confused because I was taught that coins from any country, any era, and any type can be assigned grades according to their condition of preservation from the time they were made.

    Now, since I came upon this thread in spite of being summoned as *1**nsider ;) I'm going to do a little thinking before I post my opinion.

    EDIT AFTER READING THE POST BELOW:
    Dear RobertScottLover,
    I'm sorry that I was very confused by your answer. Apparently, the deep thinkers here need more information to define MS-60 than I do so your question was not nonsense after all. Thanks for opening up a whole new way to look at the MS-60 grade. Now, the definition is going to become more complicated and require a bunch of qualifiers.

  • Insider3Insider3 Posts: 260 ✭✭✭

    @jacrispies said:
    There are different grading standards depending on the series.

    You don't see bust dollars chattered up with contact marks and you don't see morgans unchattered with a little surface friction/rub.

    Early US is, in my experience, graded by amount of rub and hairlines (mostly rub). An MS-60 would probably be a technical AU-58, because there would be significant rub for a mint state coin. Since net grading is more prevalent with early material, an assigned MS-60 likely means is a problem mint state coin. Over dipped, old cleaning, moderately scratched, etc.

    More modern coins, such as the easy to grade Morgan dollars, are graded by contact marks. Although seldom seen, patches of hairlines would likely details a coin rather than net grade it. An MS-60 coin would be undoubtedly mint state, but chattered to the moon and back. MS-60 silver dollars can be found, with other series less common in MS-60 simply because they were not held and transported in mint bags as much.

    Wow, great answer. I never even considered some of the things you wrote. Perhaps I was mistaken and owe @RobertScottlover an apology! This is going to be a good thread although it appears some really knowledgeable people believe that the characteristics used to define a particular grade cannot be expressed in words. This is disappointing to me.

  • MFeldMFeld Posts: 12,020 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Insider3 said:

    @jacrispies said:
    There are different grading standards depending on the series.

    You don't see bust dollars chattered up with contact marks and you don't see morgans unchattered with a little surface friction/rub.

    Early US is, in my experience, graded by amount of rub and hairlines (mostly rub). An MS-60 would probably be a technical AU-58, because there would be significant rub for a mint state coin. Since net grading is more prevalent with early material, an assigned MS-60 likely means is a problem mint state coin. Over dipped, old cleaning, moderately scratched, etc.

    More modern coins, such as the easy to grade Morgan dollars, are graded by contact marks. Although seldom seen, patches of hairlines would likely details a coin rather than net grade it. An MS-60 coin would be undoubtedly mint state, but chattered to the moon and back. MS-60 silver dollars can be found, with other series less common in MS-60 simply because they were not held and transported in mint bags as much.

    Wow, great answer. I never even considered some of the things you wrote. Perhaps I was mistaken and owe @RobertScottlover an apology! This is going to be a good thread although it appears some really knowledgeable people believe that the characteristics used to define a particular grade cannot be expressed in words. This is disappointing to me.

    Speaking just for myself - I didn't say that characteristics used to define a particular grade can't be expressed in words.

    I said:

    "I don't think we have definitive standards. Please take any MS or Proof grade from 60 to 69 and show me a definitive standard that can be applied on a practical basis and result in a high level of consistency."

    and

    "Even considering only marks, there are an infinite number of combinations of them on different coins. No so-called definitive standard can provide the "correct" grade while evaluating the combination of size, shape, number, location, depth, etc. of the marks.

    Next, add in other components of grading and the task makes consistency that much more difficult."

    and

    "Then please present us with the MS65 "standard" that can be applied in a way that results in highly consistent grading results. The written definitions I've seen don't necessarily enable someone to distinguish a 65 from a 64 or a 66.

    Words or pictures of some coins graded 65 don't address the infinite combinations of attributes and flaws on other coins that must be classified as one grade vs. another. Words like "minor" a "few", "small", "light", "nearly" "virtually", "slight" don't automatically lead to "definitive standards"."

    Mark Feld* of Heritage Auctions*Unless otherwise noted, my posts here represent my personal opinions.

  • airplanenutairplanenut Posts: 21,901 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @FlyingAl said:
    A coin that is better than AU58 but not as good as an MS61.

    I'd argue that a 58 is better than both of the other options here

    JK Coin Photography - eBay Consignments | High Quality Photos | LOW Prices | 20% of Consignment Proceeds Go to Pancreatic Cancer Research
  • FlyingAlFlyingAl Posts: 2,845 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @airplanenut said:

    @FlyingAl said:
    A coin that is better than AU58 but not as good as an MS61.

    I'd argue that a 58 is better than both of the other options here

    As many numismatists see it, yes.

    According to the grading standards, which are based on wear, no.

    I find myself in the first group. That is also why I am ok with grading standards shifting.

    Young Numismatist, Coin Photographer.

  • MFeldMFeld Posts: 12,020 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited February 21, 2024 12:34PM

    @airplanenut, argue all you want but this was already posted to thread:

    @FlyingAl said:

    @MFeld said:

    @TimNH said:

    @FlyingAl said:
    A coin that is better than AU58 but not as good as an MS61.

    I disagree, there are some gorgeous 58s, but 60s always look like crap. I'd go further and say 60 is the worst grade of all, none of the 'story/history/charm' of a circulated coin, and none of the eye appeal of an UNC coin. If I had one of these I'd carry it around til it was a 58.

    I'm virtually certain that by "better", @FlyingAl meant in terms of a higher numerical grade, even if less desirable than many AU58's.

    This is correct. My comment was mostly made in jest, as there is really no “fits all” definition.

    Mark Feld* of Heritage Auctions*Unless otherwise noted, my posts here represent my personal opinions.

  • CRHer700CRHer700 Posts: 625 ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 21, 2024 12:33PM

    Unworn, but banged up as heck. Bagged up Morgans come to mind.

    Cheers, and God Bless, CRHer700 :mrgreen:

  • Insider3Insider3 Posts: 260 ✭✭✭

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @jacrispies said:
    There are different grading standards depending on the series.

    You don't see bust dollars chattered up with contact marks and you don't see morgans unchattered with a little surface friction/rub.

    Early US is, in my experience, graded by amount of rub and hairlines (mostly rub). An MS-60 would probably be a technical AU-58, because there would be significant rub for a mint state coin. Since net grading is more prevalent with early material, an assigned MS-60 likely means is a problem mint state coin. Over dipped, old cleaning, moderately scratched, etc.

    More modern coins, such as the easy to grade Morgan dollars, are graded by contact marks. Although seldom seen, patches of hairlines would likely details a coin rather than net grade it. An MS-60 coin would be undoubtedly mint state, but chattered to the moon and back. MS-60 silver dollars can be found, with other series less common in MS-60 simply because they were not held and transported in mint bags as much.

    Wow, great answer. I never even considered some of the things you wrote. Perhaps I was mistaken and owe @RobertScottlover an apology! This is going to be a good thread although it appears some really knowledgeable people believe that the characteristics used to define a particular grade cannot be expressed in words. This is disappointing to me.

    Speaking just for myself - I didn't say that characteristics used to define a particular grade can't be expressed in words.

    I said:

    "I don't think we have definitive standards. Please take any MS or Proof grade from 60 to 69 and show me a definitive standard that can be applied on a practical basis and result in a high level of consistency."

    and

    "Even considering only marks, there are an infinite number of combinations of them on different coins. No so-called definitive standard can provide the "correct" grade while evaluating the combination of size, shape, number, location, depth, etc. of the marks.

    Next, add in other components of grading and the task makes consistency that much more difficult."

    and

    "Then please present us with the MS65 "standard" that can be applied in a way that results in highly consistent grading results. The written definitions I've seen don't necessarily enable someone to distinguish a 65 from a 64 or a 66.

    Words or pictures of some coins graded 65 don't address the infinite combinations of attributes and flaws on other coins that must be classified as one grade vs. another. Words like "minor" a "few", "small", "light", "nearly" "virtually", "slight" don't automatically lead to "definitive standards"."

    WHOA Big Fella...Stick to one thing MS-60. This thread is already way ahead of itself and becoming confusing.

    Put into words a good definition of the MS-60 grade.

  • Insider3Insider3 Posts: 260 ✭✭✭

    I'm still working on it but in_ my fantasy world_, I think I'm very close to a universal definition.

  • MFeldMFeld Posts: 12,020 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Insider3 said:

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @jacrispies said:
    There are different grading standards depending on the series.

    You don't see bust dollars chattered up with contact marks and you don't see morgans unchattered with a little surface friction/rub.

    Early US is, in my experience, graded by amount of rub and hairlines (mostly rub). An MS-60 would probably be a technical AU-58, because there would be significant rub for a mint state coin. Since net grading is more prevalent with early material, an assigned MS-60 likely means is a problem mint state coin. Over dipped, old cleaning, moderately scratched, etc.

    More modern coins, such as the easy to grade Morgan dollars, are graded by contact marks. Although seldom seen, patches of hairlines would likely details a coin rather than net grade it. An MS-60 coin would be undoubtedly mint state, but chattered to the moon and back. MS-60 silver dollars can be found, with other series less common in MS-60 simply because they were not held and transported in mint bags as much.

    Wow, great answer. I never even considered some of the things you wrote. Perhaps I was mistaken and owe @RobertScottlover an apology! This is going to be a good thread although it appears some really knowledgeable people believe that the characteristics used to define a particular grade cannot be expressed in words. This is disappointing to me.

    Speaking just for myself - I didn't say that characteristics used to define a particular grade can't be expressed in words.

    I said:

    "I don't think we have definitive standards. Please take any MS or Proof grade from 60 to 69 and show me a definitive standard that can be applied on a practical basis and result in a high level of consistency."

    and

    "Even considering only marks, there are an infinite number of combinations of them on different coins. No so-called definitive standard can provide the "correct" grade while evaluating the combination of size, shape, number, location, depth, etc. of the marks.

    Next, add in other components of grading and the task makes consistency that much more difficult."

    and

    "Then please present us with the MS65 "standard" that can be applied in a way that results in highly consistent grading results. The written definitions I've seen don't necessarily enable someone to distinguish a 65 from a 64 or a 66.

    Words or pictures of some coins graded 65 don't address the infinite combinations of attributes and flaws on other coins that must be classified as one grade vs. another. Words like "minor" a "few", "small", "light", "nearly" "virtually", "slight" don't automatically lead to "definitive standards"."

    WHOA Big Fella...Stick to one thing MS-60. This thread is already way ahead of itself and becoming confusing.

    Put into words a good definition of the MS-60 grade.

    A "good" definition for one grade is essentially meaningless unless it allows readers/graders to distinguish coins of that grade from other grades. Otherwise, they can't grade accurately and consistently based on that definition.
    So how about good definitions for MS60 AND 61?

    Mark Feld* of Heritage Auctions*Unless otherwise noted, my posts here represent my personal opinions.

  • Insider3Insider3 Posts: 260 ✭✭✭

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @jacrispies said:
    There are different grading standards depending on the series.

    You don't see bust dollars chattered up with contact marks and you don't see morgans unchattered with a little surface friction/rub.

    Early US is, in my experience, graded by amount of rub and hairlines (mostly rub). An MS-60 would probably be a technical AU-58, because there would be significant rub for a mint state coin. Since net grading is more prevalent with early material, an assigned MS-60 likely means is a problem mint state coin. Over dipped, old cleaning, moderately scratched, etc.

    More modern coins, such as the easy to grade Morgan dollars, are graded by contact marks. Although seldom seen, patches of hairlines would likely details a coin rather than net grade it. An MS-60 coin would be undoubtedly mint state, but chattered to the moon and back. MS-60 silver dollars can be found, with other series less common in MS-60 simply because they were not held and transported in mint bags as much.

    Wow, great answer. I never even considered some of the things you wrote. Perhaps I was mistaken and owe @RobertScottlover an apology! This is going to be a good thread although it appears some really knowledgeable people believe that the characteristics used to define a particular grade cannot be expressed in words. This is disappointing to me.

    Speaking just for myself - I didn't say that characteristics used to define a particular grade can't be expressed in words.

    I said:

    "I don't think we have definitive standards. Please take any MS or Proof grade from 60 to 69 and show me a definitive standard that can be applied on a practical basis and result in a high level of consistency."

    and

    "Even considering only marks, there are an infinite number of combinations of them on different coins. No so-called definitive standard can provide the "correct" grade while evaluating the combination of size, shape, number, location, depth, etc. of the marks.

    Next, add in other components of grading and the task makes consistency that much more difficult."

    and

    "Then please present us with the MS65 "standard" that can be applied in a way that results in highly consistent grading results. The written definitions I've seen don't necessarily enable someone to distinguish a 65 from a 64 or a 66.

    Words or pictures of some coins graded 65 don't address the infinite combinations of attributes and flaws on other coins that must be classified as one grade vs. another. Words like "minor" a "few", "small", "light", "nearly" "virtually", "slight" don't automatically lead to "definitive standards"."

    WHOA Big Fella...Stick to one thing MS-60. This thread is already way ahead of itself and becoming confusing.

    Put into words a good definition of the MS-60 grade.

    A "good" definition for one grade is essentially meaningless unless it allows readers/graders to distinguish coins of that grade from other grades. Otherwise, they can't grade accurately and consistently based on that definition.
    So how about good definitions for MS60 AND 61?

    :(:'(:'(Is there any member here who CAN DO ANYTHING REQUESTED OR ARE MOST OF US FAR TOO SMART TO DEAL WITH! ** Is there any wonder why our grading system was so screwed up from the beginning! It was formulized in a book by expert professional dealers and very knowledgeable numismatist consultants.

    I can describe an apple WITHOUT including the other fruits. That makes me just an opinionated dummy with a screw loose.

  • coastaljerseyguycoastaljerseyguy Posts: 1,243 ✭✭✭✭✭

    But you may need to describe what a fruit is before you can adequately define an apple to someone who has no clue. :)

  • MFeldMFeld Posts: 12,020 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Insider3 said:

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @jacrispies said:
    There are different grading standards depending on the series.

    You don't see bust dollars chattered up with contact marks and you don't see morgans unchattered with a little surface friction/rub.

    Early US is, in my experience, graded by amount of rub and hairlines (mostly rub). An MS-60 would probably be a technical AU-58, because there would be significant rub for a mint state coin. Since net grading is more prevalent with early material, an assigned MS-60 likely means is a problem mint state coin. Over dipped, old cleaning, moderately scratched, etc.

    More modern coins, such as the easy to grade Morgan dollars, are graded by contact marks. Although seldom seen, patches of hairlines would likely details a coin rather than net grade it. An MS-60 coin would be undoubtedly mint state, but chattered to the moon and back. MS-60 silver dollars can be found, with other series less common in MS-60 simply because they were not held and transported in mint bags as much.

    Wow, great answer. I never even considered some of the things you wrote. Perhaps I was mistaken and owe @RobertScottlover an apology! This is going to be a good thread although it appears some really knowledgeable people believe that the characteristics used to define a particular grade cannot be expressed in words. This is disappointing to me.

    Speaking just for myself - I didn't say that characteristics used to define a particular grade can't be expressed in words.

    I said:

    "I don't think we have definitive standards. Please take any MS or Proof grade from 60 to 69 and show me a definitive standard that can be applied on a practical basis and result in a high level of consistency."

    and

    "Even considering only marks, there are an infinite number of combinations of them on different coins. No so-called definitive standard can provide the "correct" grade while evaluating the combination of size, shape, number, location, depth, etc. of the marks.

    Next, add in other components of grading and the task makes consistency that much more difficult."

    and

    "Then please present us with the MS65 "standard" that can be applied in a way that results in highly consistent grading results. The written definitions I've seen don't necessarily enable someone to distinguish a 65 from a 64 or a 66.

    Words or pictures of some coins graded 65 don't address the infinite combinations of attributes and flaws on other coins that must be classified as one grade vs. another. Words like "minor" a "few", "small", "light", "nearly" "virtually", "slight" don't automatically lead to "definitive standards"."

    WHOA Big Fella...Stick to one thing MS-60. This thread is already way ahead of itself and becoming confusing.

    Put into words a good definition of the MS-60 grade.

    A "good" definition for one grade is essentially meaningless unless it allows readers/graders to distinguish coins of that grade from other grades. Otherwise, they can't grade accurately and consistently based on that definition.
    So how about good definitions for MS60 AND 61?

    :(:'(:'(Is there any member here who CAN DO ANYTHING REQUESTED OR ARE MOST OF US FAR TOO SMART TO DEAL WITH! ** Is there any wonder why our grading system was so screwed up from the beginning! It was formulized in a book by expert professional dealers and very knowledgeable numismatist consultants.

    I can describe an apple WITHOUT including the other fruits. That makes me just an opinionated dummy with a screw loose.

    I think that was a very poor analogy. But I suppose it was worth a shot, since you can’t meet the challenge I presented to you.

    I’ll try to encourage you by giving you more options…Choose any two contiguous grades from 60 through 68. Then show us written standards for those two grades, which will allow a grader to 1) know what the “correct” grade is and 2) be able to distinguish it from the grade above or below it on a consistent basis, in order to qualify as a “ definitive standard”.

    Good luck - you’ll need a lot of it.

    Mark Feld* of Heritage Auctions*Unless otherwise noted, my posts here represent my personal opinions.

  • jmlanzafjmlanzaf Posts: 31,845 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @jacrispies said:
    There are different grading standards depending on the series.

    You don't see bust dollars chattered up with contact marks and you don't see morgans unchattered with a little surface friction/rub.

    Early US is, in my experience, graded by amount of rub and hairlines (mostly rub). An MS-60 would probably be a technical AU-58, because there would be significant rub for a mint state coin. Since net grading is more prevalent with early material, an assigned MS-60 likely means is a problem mint state coin. Over dipped, old cleaning, moderately scratched, etc.

    More modern coins, such as the easy to grade Morgan dollars, are graded by contact marks. Although seldom seen, patches of hairlines would likely details a coin rather than net grade it. An MS-60 coin would be undoubtedly mint state, but chattered to the moon and back. MS-60 silver dollars can be found, with other series less common in MS-60 simply because they were not held and transported in mint bags as much.

    Wow, great answer. I never even considered some of the things you wrote. Perhaps I was mistaken and owe @RobertScottlover an apology! This is going to be a good thread although it appears some really knowledgeable people believe that the characteristics used to define a particular grade cannot be expressed in words. This is disappointing to me.

    Speaking just for myself - I didn't say that characteristics used to define a particular grade can't be expressed in words.

    I said:

    "I don't think we have definitive standards. Please take any MS or Proof grade from 60 to 69 and show me a definitive standard that can be applied on a practical basis and result in a high level of consistency."

    and

    "Even considering only marks, there are an infinite number of combinations of them on different coins. No so-called definitive standard can provide the "correct" grade while evaluating the combination of size, shape, number, location, depth, etc. of the marks.

    Next, add in other components of grading and the task makes consistency that much more difficult."

    and

    "Then please present us with the MS65 "standard" that can be applied in a way that results in highly consistent grading results. The written definitions I've seen don't necessarily enable someone to distinguish a 65 from a 64 or a 66.

    Words or pictures of some coins graded 65 don't address the infinite combinations of attributes and flaws on other coins that must be classified as one grade vs. another. Words like "minor" a "few", "small", "light", "nearly" "virtually", "slight" don't automatically lead to "definitive standards"."

    "...don't automatically lead to 'definitive standards'." How about "...automatically lead away from 'definitive standards'."?

  • jmlanzafjmlanzaf Posts: 31,845 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited February 21, 2024 2:07PM

    @Insider3 said:

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @jacrispies said:
    There are different grading standards depending on the series.

    You don't see bust dollars chattered up with contact marks and you don't see morgans unchattered with a little surface friction/rub.

    Early US is, in my experience, graded by amount of rub and hairlines (mostly rub). An MS-60 would probably be a technical AU-58, because there would be significant rub for a mint state coin. Since net grading is more prevalent with early material, an assigned MS-60 likely means is a problem mint state coin. Over dipped, old cleaning, moderately scratched, etc.

    More modern coins, such as the easy to grade Morgan dollars, are graded by contact marks. Although seldom seen, patches of hairlines would likely details a coin rather than net grade it. An MS-60 coin would be undoubtedly mint state, but chattered to the moon and back. MS-60 silver dollars can be found, with other series less common in MS-60 simply because they were not held and transported in mint bags as much.

    Wow, great answer. I never even considered some of the things you wrote. Perhaps I was mistaken and owe @RobertScottlover an apology! This is going to be a good thread although it appears some really knowledgeable people believe that the characteristics used to define a particular grade cannot be expressed in words. This is disappointing to me.

    Speaking just for myself - I didn't say that characteristics used to define a particular grade can't be expressed in words.

    I said:

    "I don't think we have definitive standards. Please take any MS or Proof grade from 60 to 69 and show me a definitive standard that can be applied on a practical basis and result in a high level of consistency."

    and

    "Even considering only marks, there are an infinite number of combinations of them on different coins. No so-called definitive standard can provide the "correct" grade while evaluating the combination of size, shape, number, location, depth, etc. of the marks.

    Next, add in other components of grading and the task makes consistency that much more difficult."

    and

    "Then please present us with the MS65 "standard" that can be applied in a way that results in highly consistent grading results. The written definitions I've seen don't necessarily enable someone to distinguish a 65 from a 64 or a 66.

    Words or pictures of some coins graded 65 don't address the infinite combinations of attributes and flaws on other coins that must be classified as one grade vs. another. Words like "minor" a "few", "small", "light", "nearly" "virtually", "slight" don't automatically lead to "definitive standards"."

    WHOA Big Fella...Stick to one thing MS-60. This thread is already way ahead of itself and becoming confusing.

    Put into words a good definition of the MS-60 grade.

    A "good" definition for one grade is essentially meaningless unless it allows readers/graders to distinguish coins of that grade from other grades. Otherwise, they can't grade accurately and consistently based on that definition.
    So how about good definitions for MS60 AND 61?

    :(:'(:'(Is there any member here who CAN DO ANYTHING REQUESTED OR ARE MOST OF US FAR TOO SMART TO DEAL WITH! ** Is there any wonder why our grading system was so screwed up from the beginning! It was formulized in a book by expert professional dealers and very knowledgeable numismatist consultants.

    I can describe an apple WITHOUT including the other fruits. That makes me just an opinionated dummy with a screw loose.

    Crabapple?

    You are missing the point. You need to define an apple in a way that automatically excludes all other fruits. A definition of MS-60 that would also allow coins that are MS-61 to fall within the definition is fundamentally flawed. [See the PCGS overlapping definitions posted above. ]

  • MFeldMFeld Posts: 12,020 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited February 21, 2024 2:18PM

    @jmlanzaf said:

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @jacrispies said:
    There are different grading standards depending on the series.

    You don't see bust dollars chattered up with contact marks and you don't see morgans unchattered with a little surface friction/rub.

    Early US is, in my experience, graded by amount of rub and hairlines (mostly rub). An MS-60 would probably be a technical AU-58, because there would be significant rub for a mint state coin. Since net grading is more prevalent with early material, an assigned MS-60 likely means is a problem mint state coin. Over dipped, old cleaning, moderately scratched, etc.

    More modern coins, such as the easy to grade Morgan dollars, are graded by contact marks. Although seldom seen, patches of hairlines would likely details a coin rather than net grade it. An MS-60 coin would be undoubtedly mint state, but chattered to the moon and back. MS-60 silver dollars can be found, with other series less common in MS-60 simply because they were not held and transported in mint bags as much.

    Wow, great answer. I never even considered some of the things you wrote. Perhaps I was mistaken and owe @RobertScottlover an apology! This is going to be a good thread although it appears some really knowledgeable people believe that the characteristics used to define a particular grade cannot be expressed in words. This is disappointing to me.

    Speaking just for myself - I didn't say that characteristics used to define a particular grade can't be expressed in words.

    I said:

    "I don't think we have definitive standards. Please take any MS or Proof grade from 60 to 69 and show me a definitive standard that can be applied on a practical basis and result in a high level of consistency."

    and

    "Even considering only marks, there are an infinite number of combinations of them on different coins. No so-called definitive standard can provide the "correct" grade while evaluating the combination of size, shape, number, location, depth, etc. of the marks.

    Next, add in other components of grading and the task makes consistency that much more difficult."

    and

    "Then please present us with the MS65 "standard" that can be applied in a way that results in highly consistent grading results. The written definitions I've seen don't necessarily enable someone to distinguish a 65 from a 64 or a 66.

    Words or pictures of some coins graded 65 don't address the infinite combinations of attributes and flaws on other coins that must be classified as one grade vs. another. Words like "minor" a "few", "small", "light", "nearly" "virtually", "slight" don't automatically lead to "definitive standards"."

    "...don't automatically lead to 'definitive standards'." How about "...automatically lead away from 'definitive standards'."?

    That’s more accurate than what I wrote. 👍

    Mark Feld* of Heritage Auctions*Unless otherwise noted, my posts here represent my personal opinions.

  • jmlanzafjmlanzaf Posts: 31,845 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @jacrispies said:
    There are different grading standards depending on the series.

    You don't see bust dollars chattered up with contact marks and you don't see morgans unchattered with a little surface friction/rub.

    Early US is, in my experience, graded by amount of rub and hairlines (mostly rub). An MS-60 would probably be a technical AU-58, because there would be significant rub for a mint state coin. Since net grading is more prevalent with early material, an assigned MS-60 likely means is a problem mint state coin. Over dipped, old cleaning, moderately scratched, etc.

    More modern coins, such as the easy to grade Morgan dollars, are graded by contact marks. Although seldom seen, patches of hairlines would likely details a coin rather than net grade it. An MS-60 coin would be undoubtedly mint state, but chattered to the moon and back. MS-60 silver dollars can be found, with other series less common in MS-60 simply because they were not held and transported in mint bags as much.

    Wow, great answer. I never even considered some of the things you wrote. Perhaps I was mistaken and owe @RobertScottlover an apology! This is going to be a good thread although it appears some really knowledgeable people believe that the characteristics used to define a particular grade cannot be expressed in words. This is disappointing to me.

    Speaking just for myself - I didn't say that characteristics used to define a particular grade can't be expressed in words.

    I said:

    "I don't think we have definitive standards. Please take any MS or Proof grade from 60 to 69 and show me a definitive standard that can be applied on a practical basis and result in a high level of consistency."

    and

    "Even considering only marks, there are an infinite number of combinations of them on different coins. No so-called definitive standard can provide the "correct" grade while evaluating the combination of size, shape, number, location, depth, etc. of the marks.

    Next, add in other components of grading and the task makes consistency that much more difficult."

    and

    "Then please present us with the MS65 "standard" that can be applied in a way that results in highly consistent grading results. The written definitions I've seen don't necessarily enable someone to distinguish a 65 from a 64 or a 66.

    Words or pictures of some coins graded 65 don't address the infinite combinations of attributes and flaws on other coins that must be classified as one grade vs. another. Words like "minor" a "few", "small", "light", "nearly" "virtually", "slight" don't automatically lead to "definitive standards"."

    WHOA Big Fella...Stick to one thing MS-60. This thread is already way ahead of itself and becoming confusing.

    Put into words a good definition of the MS-60 grade.

    A "good" definition for one grade is essentially meaningless unless it allows readers/graders to distinguish coins of that grade from other grades. Otherwise, they can't grade accurately and consistently based on that definition.
    So how about good definitions for MS60 AND 61?

    :(:'(:'(Is there any member here who CAN DO ANYTHING REQUESTED OR ARE MOST OF US FAR TOO SMART TO DEAL WITH! ** Is there any wonder why our grading system was so screwed up from the beginning! It was formulized in a book by expert professional dealers and very knowledgeable numismatist consultants.

    I can describe an apple WITHOUT including the other fruits. That makes me just an opinionated dummy with a screw loose.

    I think that was a very poor analogy. But I suppose it was worth a shot, since you can’t meet the challenge I presented to you.

    I’ll try to encourage you by giving you more options…Choose any two contiguous grades from 60 through 68. Then show us written standards for those two grades, which will allow a grader to 1) know what the “correct” grade is and 2) be able to distinguish it from the grade above or below it on a consistent basis, in order to qualify as a “ definitive standard”.

    Good luck - you’ll need a lot of it.

    I look forward to a definitive definition of "eye appeal".

  • oldabeintxoldabeintx Posts: 1,632 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @CRHer700 said:
    Unworn, but banged up as heck. Bagged up Morgans come to mind.

    We see so many Morgans that it is tempting to think only of surface marks and in extremes. Same with big gold. However, I see grades as more of a continuum when it comes to smaller coins or earlier coins.

  • MrEurekaMrEureka Posts: 23,936 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited February 21, 2024 2:37PM

    .

    Andy Lustig

    Doggedly collecting coins of the Central American Republic.

    Visit the Society of US Pattern Collectors at USPatterns.com.
  • BECOKABECOKA Posts: 16,957 ✭✭✭

    I know I could not tell an MS 60 from a "definitive written definition" without seeing many hundereds of examples in hand to mentally sort out what those words might mean.

    Even considering slight wear, if the high points are slightly worn, it take a trained eye to tell the difference from stacking and wear. If you are lucky you can see a discoloration at the high point to sway the choice one direction or the other but that is not always the case.

    This being one very small part of the whole grading everyone else mentioned.

  • The_Dinosaur_ManThe_Dinosaur_Man Posts: 836 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I'm sure there are some true technical MS-60 coins out there, but the line of AU-58 to MS-62 is so subjective to many of the points described above, I think the grade can only really be assigned by the collective agreement of a larger population of graders. Some would say AU-58, some would say MS-61 or 62, and MS-60 would be a "happy medium" of sorts.

    Just for my own curiosity, has there been any coin graded MS-60+? That would be interesting to see.

    Custom album maker and numismatic photographer, see my portfolio here: (http://www.donahuenumismatics.com/).

  • FrazFraz Posts: 1,824 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I have slabbed clad low MSs that I buy to study. I get the concept, but’s hard to appreciate the inconsistencies.

  • jacrispiesjacrispies Posts: 711 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @The_Dinosaur_Man
    Only the grades of 45, 50, 53, 55, 58, 62, 63, 64, 65, 66, 67, and 68 can get a plus at PCGS.

    "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord" Romans 6:23. Young fellow suffering from Bust Half fever.

  • Insider3Insider3 Posts: 260 ✭✭✭

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @jacrispies said:
    There are different grading standards depending on the series.

    You don't see bust dollars chattered up with contact marks and you don't see morgans unchattered with a little surface friction/rub.

    Early US is, in my experience, graded by amount of rub and hairlines (mostly rub). An MS-60 would probably be a technical AU-58, because there would be significant rub for a mint state coin. Since net grading is more prevalent with early material, an assigned MS-60 likely means is a problem mint state coin. Over dipped, old cleaning, moderately scratched, etc.

    More modern coins, such as the easy to grade Morgan dollars, are graded by contact marks. Although seldom seen, patches of hairlines would likely details a coin rather than net grade it. An MS-60 coin would be undoubtedly mint state, but chattered to the moon and back. MS-60 silver dollars can be found, with other series less common in MS-60 simply because they were not held and transported in mint bags as much.

    Wow, great answer. I never even considered some of the things you wrote. Perhaps I was mistaken and owe @RobertScottlover an apology! This is going to be a good thread although it appears some really knowledgeable people believe that the characteristics used to define a particular grade cannot be expressed in words. This is disappointing to me.

    Speaking just for myself - I didn't say that characteristics used to define a particular grade can't be expressed in words.

    I said:

    "I don't think we have definitive standards. Please take any MS or Proof grade from 60 to 69 and show me a definitive standard that can be applied on a practical basis and result in a high level of consistency."

    and

    "Even considering only marks, there are an infinite number of combinations of them on different coins. No so-called definitive standard can provide the "correct" grade while evaluating the combination of size, shape, number, location, depth, etc. of the marks.

    Next, add in other components of grading and the task makes consistency that much more difficult."

    and

    "Then please present us with the MS65 "standard" that can be applied in a way that results in highly consistent grading results. The written definitions I've seen don't necessarily enable someone to distinguish a 65 from a 64 or a 66.

    Words or pictures of some coins graded 65 don't address the infinite combinations of attributes and flaws on other coins that must be classified as one grade vs. another. Words like "minor" a "few", "small", "light", "nearly" "virtually", "slight" don't automatically lead to "definitive standards"."

    WHOA Big Fella...Stick to one thing MS-60. This thread is already way ahead of itself and becoming confusing.

    Put into words a good definition of the MS-60 grade.

    A "good" definition for one grade is essentially meaningless unless it allows readers/graders to distinguish coins of that grade from other grades. Otherwise, they can't grade accurately and consistently based on that definition.
    So how about good definitions for MS60 AND 61?

    :(:'(:'(Is there any member here who CAN DO ANYTHING REQUESTED OR ARE MOST OF US FAR TOO SMART TO DEAL WITH! ** Is there any wonder why our grading system was so screwed up from the beginning! It was formulized in a book by expert professional dealers and very knowledgeable numismatist consultants.

    I can describe an apple WITHOUT including the other fruits. That makes me just an opinionated dummy with a screw loose.

    I think that was a very poor analogy. But I suppose it was worth a shot, since you can’t meet the challenge I presented to you.

    I’ll try to encourage you by giving you more options…Choose any two contiguous grades from 60 through 68. Then show us written standards for those two grades, which will allow a grader to 1) know what the “correct” grade is and 2) be able to distinguish it from the grade above or below it on a consistent basis, in order to qualify as a “ definitive standard”.

    Good luck - you’ll need a lot of it.

    I told you I was getting close to a definition of MS-60. I don't work on the timetable of others and I don't duck out of debates. This kind of question posed by the OP is an interesting challenge, more suited to the "Moonlight Lounge" in CO or in a week long grading class. It gets people thinking. When a member here wrote they needed to know the coin type or era to answer the OP - my first reaction was the guy was nuts. However, we actually do consider different defects on Proofs vs Ancients. This is a good question and I intend to take a stab with a definition that covers ALL MS-60's rather than not answer this "whimsey" or cloud the question with extraneous additions. Unfortunately, one of the important members here that could post his own answer or eventually correct or add to my definition has dropped out. I should think that if a YN asked you what anMS-60 grade was, you could do it W/O including other grades.

    I'll remind others who may wish to attempt an answer that THE ONLY GRADE WE SHOULD BE DISCUSSING HERE IS MS-60! I saw the other "Whimsey" post by the OP and it appears to me that as a start, he picked the two simplest grades to define.

    Finally, IMO, the OP's question is exactly the kind of thing that turns a young "skull-full-of-mush" into a numismatist such as you, Rex, and others posting.

  • Insider3Insider3 Posts: 260 ✭✭✭

    Unfortunately, it appears the OP mad this discussion too complicated. He should have first asked us to
    define MINT STATE! o:)

  • jacrispiesjacrispies Posts: 711 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Insider3 said:
    Unfortunately, it appears the OP mad this discussion too complicated. He should have first asked us to
    define MINT STATE! o:)

    That should be no rub or wear of any kind.

    Oh wait... that goes against my initial definition!! :D

    "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord" Romans 6:23. Young fellow suffering from Bust Half fever.

  • Insider3Insider3 Posts: 260 ✭✭✭

    @jmlanzaf said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @jacrispies said:
    There are different grading standards depending on the series.

    You don't see bust dollars chattered up with contact marks and you don't see morgans unchattered with a little surface friction/rub.

    Early US is, in my experience, graded by amount of rub and hairlines (mostly rub). An MS-60 would probably be a technical AU-58, because there would be significant rub for a mint state coin. Since net grading is more prevalent with early material, an assigned MS-60 likely means is a problem mint state coin. Over dipped, old cleaning, moderately scratched, etc.

    More modern coins, such as the easy to grade Morgan dollars, are graded by contact marks. Although seldom seen, patches of hairlines would likely details a coin rather than net grade it. An MS-60 coin would be undoubtedly mint state, but chattered to the moon and back. MS-60 silver dollars can be found, with other series less common in MS-60 simply because they were not held and transported in mint bags as much.

    Wow, great answer. I never even considered some of the things you wrote. Perhaps I was mistaken and owe @RobertScottlover an apology! This is going to be a good thread although it appears some really knowledgeable people believe that the characteristics used to define a particular grade cannot be expressed in words. This is disappointing to me.

    Speaking just for myself - I didn't say that characteristics used to define a particular grade can't be expressed in words.

    I said:

    "I don't think we have definitive standards. Please take any MS or Proof grade from 60 to 69 and show me a definitive standard that can be applied on a practical basis and result in a high level of consistency."

    and

    "Even considering only marks, there are an infinite number of combinations of them on different coins. No so-called definitive standard can provide the "correct" grade while evaluating the combination of size, shape, number, location, depth, etc. of the marks.

    Next, add in other components of grading and the task makes consistency that much more difficult."

    and

    "Then please present us with the MS65 "standard" that can be applied in a way that results in highly consistent grading results. The written definitions I've seen don't necessarily enable someone to distinguish a 65 from a 64 or a 66.

    Words or pictures of some coins graded 65 don't address the infinite combinations of attributes and flaws on other coins that must be classified as one grade vs. another. Words like "minor" a "few", "small", "light", "nearly" "virtually", "slight" don't automatically lead to "definitive standards"."

    WHOA Big Fella...Stick to one thing MS-60. This thread is already way ahead of itself and becoming confusing.

    Put into words a good definition of the MS-60 grade.

    A "good" definition for one grade is essentially meaningless unless it allows readers/graders to distinguish coins of that grade from other grades. Otherwise, they can't grade accurately and consistently based on that definition.
    So how about good definitions for MS60 AND 61?

    :(:'(:'(Is there any member here who CAN DO ANYTHING REQUESTED OR ARE MOST OF US FAR TOO SMART TO DEAL WITH! ** Is there any wonder why our grading system was so screwed up from the beginning! It was formulized in a book by expert professional dealers and very knowledgeable numismatist consultants.

    I can describe an apple WITHOUT including the other fruits. That makes me just an opinionated dummy with a screw loose.

    Crabapple?

    You are missing the point. [NO I'M NOT - OTHER POSTERS ARE MISSING THE POINT SPELLED OUT VERY CLEARLY IN THE OP - Define MS-60!] You need to define an apple in a way that automatically excludes all other fruits. [By golly! You get it! Gold Star! And guess what, this is EXACTLY WHAT/HOW ANY GRADING 101 STUDENT WOULD INTERPRET THE OP's QUESTION because their mind is not cluttered up with experience and knowledge!] A definition of MS-60 that would also allow coins that are MS-61 to fall within the definition is fundamentally flawed. [AGREE!] See the PCGS overlapping definitions posted above.

  • Insider3Insider3 Posts: 260 ✭✭✭

    @jmlanzaf said:

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @MFeld said:

    @Insider3 said:

    @jacrispies said:
    There are different grading standards depending on the series.

    You don't see bust dollars chattered up with contact marks and you don't see morgans unchattered with a little surface friction/rub.

    Early US is, in my experience, graded by amount of rub and hairlines (mostly rub). An MS-60 would probably be a technical AU-58, because there would be significant rub for a mint state coin. Since net grading is more prevalent with early material, an assigned MS-60 likely means is a problem mint state coin. Over dipped, old cleaning, moderately scratched, etc.

    More modern coins, such as the easy to grade Morgan dollars, are graded by contact marks. Although seldom seen, patches of hairlines would likely details a coin rather than net grade it. An MS-60 coin would be undoubtedly mint state, but chattered to the moon and back. MS-60 silver dollars can be found, with other series less common in MS-60 simply because they were not held and transported in mint bags as much.

    Wow, great answer. I never even considered some of the things you wrote. Perhaps I was mistaken and owe @RobertScottlover an apology! This is going to be a good thread although it appears some really knowledgeable people believe that the characteristics used to define a particular grade cannot be expressed in words. This is disappointing to me.

    Speaking just for myself - I didn't say that characteristics used to define a particular grade can't be expressed in words.

    I said:

    "I don't think we have definitive standards. Please take any MS or Proof grade from 60 to 69 and show me a definitive standard that can be applied on a practical basis and result in a high level of consistency."

    and

    "Even considering only marks, there are an infinite number of combinations of them on different coins. No so-called definitive standard can provide the "correct" grade while evaluating the combination of size, shape, number, location, depth, etc. of the marks.

    Next, add in other components of grading and the task makes consistency that much more difficult."

    and

    "Then please present us with the MS65 "standard" that can be applied in a way that results in highly consistent grading results. The written definitions I've seen don't necessarily enable someone to distinguish a 65 from a 64 or a 66.

    Words or pictures of some coins graded 65 don't address the infinite combinations of attributes and flaws on other coins that must be classified as one grade vs. another. Words like "minor" a "few", "small", "light", "nearly" "virtually", "slight" don't automatically lead to "definitive standards"."

    WHOA Big Fella...Stick to one thing MS-60. This thread is already way ahead of itself and becoming confusing.

    Put into words a good definition of the MS-60 grade.

    A "good" definition for one grade is essentially meaningless unless it allows readers/graders to distinguish coins of that grade from other grades. Otherwise, they can't grade accurately and consistently based on that definition.
    So how about good definitions for MS60 AND 61?

    :(:'(:'(Is there any member here who CAN DO ANYTHING REQUESTED OR ARE MOST OF US FAR TOO SMART TO DEAL WITH! ** Is there any wonder why our grading system was so screwed up from the beginning! It was formulized in a book by expert professional dealers and very knowledgeable numismatist consultants.

    I can describe an apple WITHOUT including the other fruits. That makes me just an opinionated dummy with a screw loose.

    I think that was a very poor analogy. But I suppose it was worth a shot, since you can’t meet the challenge I presented to you.

    I’ll try to encourage you by giving you more options…Choose any two contiguous grades from 60 through 68. Then show us written standards for those two grades, which will allow a grader to 1) know what the “correct” grade is and 2) be able to distinguish it from the grade above or below it on a consistent basis, in order to qualify as a “ definitive standard”.

    Good luck - you’ll need a lot of it.

    I look forward to a definitive definition of "eye appeal".

    EYE Appeal has nothing to do with MS-60. That is another flaw that contributes to nonsense grades. Eye appeal is a summation of all the characteristics that make up a coins COMMERCIAL grade - its value - not it's condition of preservation from the time it left the press. Value, rarity and eye appeal, and knowledge of the examiner ALL contribute to the subjectivity of grading.

    What the OP does not know and what is causing so much unnecessary (IMO) text in this thread WITHOUT NOT ONE Member attempting to define the MS-60 grade is because most are caught up with the commercial side of the grading scale while ignoring the actual things we can see on a coin that makes most of us grade it MS-60 (which no longer exists as a choice in modern TPGS grading rooms.). I consider this a mental exercise that will be very helpful because if the OP does not do it, and members participate rather than cloud up the discussion with "can't be done," "who cares," and "what about," I plan to continue with threads about MS-61 and MS-69 as we work up and down the grading scale until we reach the middle - MS-65. o:)

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