Advice for a coin guy who wants to collect currency

YorkshiremanYorkshireman Posts: 2,559 ✭✭✭✭
edited November 1, 2016 9:16AM in U.S. & World Currency Forum

This is my first posting on the currency pages. I have collected coins for years and have a pretty decent "Box of 20".
Granted there are only about 12 or 13 pieces in it at the moment.
I am becoming increasingly infatuated by large size currency. Yes, I realize I need to "buy the book" before the bill.
Where do you seasoned currency collectors see value and/or opportunity in the market place? What series / type is the best place to start?
I am very nervous as I start an expansion into paper. Any advice would be most appreciated.

Yorkshireman
Obsessed collector of pieces of history.



Yorkshireman's Box of 20

Comments

  • logger7logger7 Posts: 3,742 ✭✭✭✭✭

    A coin dealer in NH offered me some Colonials he knew nothing about, which turned me on to paper. I would buy the inexpensive Friedberg book, a copy of Greensheet and then maybe focus of a number of inexpensive low risk type notes, preferably certified. Ultimately you want to limit your risk by researching and avoiding problem notes before buying.

  • boimre1972boimre1972 Posts: 758 ✭✭✭
    edited November 1, 2016 3:57PM

    Friedberg book is excellent for cataloging what is out there, awful for prices. Heritage auction records can give insight into market trends related to prices, as can eBay records.

    I would advise you to pick some defining element for your collection. For example focus on: a specific series (year), or denomination (i.e. only $1 notes), or signatures, or national bank of issuance, or city of issuance, or state of issuance, or color of seal (blue, red, gold).

    Also, set a standard for the grades you will collect. For example, some people won't by any grade less than 63. That would be a real challenge to find large size notes in that condition (it is possible). Or, as I've seen a couple people do on this board, only collect the lowest grade. Nothing above a 12. Easier to find notes like that. You can also make up your mind to collect only graded notes, or ungraded, or that may not matter to you. If you really want a challenge, focus on a specific serial number (I focus on notes with 1701 in them), then again for large size that may be too challenging.

    The tougher your standards, the more focused your search, the more money you'll save, and the more fun you'll have. Don't go into this expecting to make money. Trust me on this! When I started collecting, I liked small size star notes and ended up buying everything. Now I'm trying to get rid of a lot and loosing money (what I call my idiot tax). The sooner you can get a focus, the better.

    Best of luck and welcome to currency!

    Mike
    Collecting small-size star notes.
    Mishawaka, IN
  • element159element159 Posts: 318 ✭✭✭

    A fun place to start is inexpensive world notes. You can find lots and lots of UNC examples on eBay for $1-$2 a note, so you can get used to what you like collecting, and storing it, for little money. There are plenty of expensive and very cool world notes, but also very many cheap ones.

    image
  • tomtomtomtomtomtomtomtom Posts: 277 ✭✭✭
    edited November 2, 2016 3:51AM


    Take a look at collecting fractionals...great little piece of history...even some rarer notes are priced lower than the "big" guys. Rob Kravitz's book on Fractionals is a must have source. You can put together a type set quite easily and work on all the different varieties from there....welcome!

  • YorkshiremanYorkshireman Posts: 2,559 ✭✭✭✭

    While eating breakfast, I looked through Heritage's auction archives trying to get a better felling for what I like and do not like.
    Large size definitely -- Pre 1900 definitely.
    I want nice art work but don't want to put $5000 per note into it.

    Suggestion anyone? Fractionals are cool, but too small for my taste.

    I am going to the Chattanooga show on Friday. I will buy a copy of Freidberg from the book dealer and try to spend time with currency dealers to start the learning process.

    Yorkshireman
    Obsessed collector of pieces of history.



    Yorkshireman's Box of 20
  • logger7logger7 Posts: 3,742 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Think and make offers like a dealer, cash is king.

  • Jim61Jim61 Posts: 4,443 ✭✭✭

    @Yorkshireman said:
    While eating breakfast, I looked through Heritage's auction archives trying to get a better felling for what I like and do not like.
    Large size definitely -- Pre 1900 definitely.
    I want nice art work but don't want to put $5000 per note into it.

    Suggestion anyone? Fractionals are cool, but too small for my taste.

    I am going to the Chattanooga show on Friday. I will buy a copy of Freidberg from the book dealer and try to spend time with currency dealers to start the learning process.

    Welcome! I think your plan is a good start. At the show watch other transactions to get a feel on how to proceed. But do this for many dealers. What works for one won't work with others. Learn some of the terms being used. Even if you do not buy a single note you will be learning. You will find those dealers who will be very helpful in educating you even if you do not buy, then others who are only interested in selling only so won't spend much time talking with you. Just enjoy the learning experience.



    Jim61

    Looking for $1 CU FRN radar 16566561 - NOT ANY MORE, THANK YOU delistamps and TheRock!

    Looking for $1 CU FRN radar 16977961.

    Looking for $1 CU FRN 99999961 - NOT ANY MORE, THANK YOU delistamps!

    Looking for $50 FRN 00000061
  • sellitstoresellitstore Posts: 938 ✭✭✭✭

    If you want to collect pre 1900 large size notes, the next question that you might want to consider is do you want to follow your "box of 20" approach by collecting one of each major design type or does collecting the different denominations of a particular issue appeal to you? A couple of possibilities for the later might be the 1869 "Rainbow" Legal Tender Notes or Series 1890 and 1891 brown seal Treasury Notes.

    Collector and dealer in obsolete currency. Always buying all obsolete bank notes and scrip. Ebay listings
  • YorkshiremanYorkshireman Posts: 2,559 ✭✭✭✭

    Thanks for the great suggestions from those who have responded. Please keep the ideas coming!

    Yorkshireman
    Obsessed collector of pieces of history.



    Yorkshireman's Box of 20
  • boimre1972boimre1972 Posts: 758 ✭✭✭

    I did a quick google search and found this site. I hope it is helpful: http://www.antiquemoney.com/old-one-dollar-bill-value-price-guide/

    Mike
    Collecting small-size star notes.
    Mishawaka, IN
  • georgiaboygeorgiaboy Posts: 1,016 ✭✭

    buy what u like. currency holds up well, later u can upgrade or sell what u arent feeling anymore.

  • YorkshiremanYorkshireman Posts: 2,559 ✭✭✭✭

    At show tomorrow. Would love to hear more words of wisdom from you experienced paper money collectors.

    Yorkshireman
    Obsessed collector of pieces of history.



    Yorkshireman's Box of 20
  • Good advice here; would also suggest a subscription to Banknote Reporter

    Looking for CU $1 FRN 05232016 - any series or block. Please PM
    Looking for CU $1 FRN 20160523 - any series or block. Please PM

    Retired

  • YorkshiremanYorkshireman Posts: 2,559 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November 4, 2016 3:38AM

    I am off to the show now. ...So excited...
    I will let you now if I buy anything and./or describe my conversation with dealers.

    Yorkshireman
    Obsessed collector of pieces of history.



    Yorkshireman's Box of 20
  • Have fun, Yorkshireman!

    Large size US currency represents truly great engraving and artwork, and a number of ways to collect. Federal and National Bank notes as well as obsolete US bank currencies present a wide ranging palette of incredible designs and vignettes. Some issues are downright astounding in their artwork, such as the silver certificate "Educational" series of 1896.

    Best idea: hit the coin shows, talk to the dealers and check out their inventories. It will be easy to get hooked on US paper money.

  • TookybanditTookybandit Posts: 3,244 ✭✭✭

    I hope you will post a show report! Good luck and happy hunting!

  • FlashFlash Posts: 1,206 ✭✭✭

    Show report?

    Matt
  • HallcoHallco Posts: 2,802 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited July 20, 2018 5:10PM

    @Yorkshireman...I realize this is an old thread, but I would love to know if you pursued this interest. I am planning to expand into paper and look for some in Dalton. Please give an update! :)

  • YorkshiremanYorkshireman Posts: 2,559 ✭✭✭✭

    @Hallco said:
    @Yorkshireman...I realize this is an old thread, but I would love to know if you pursued this interest. I am planning to expand into paper and look for some in Dalton. Please give an update! :)

    I never really got into paper.

    Yorkshireman
    Obsessed collector of pieces of history.



    Yorkshireman's Box of 20
  • HallcoHallco Posts: 2,802 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Yorkshireman said:

    @Hallco said:
    @Yorkshireman...I realize this is an old thread, but I would love to know if you pursued this interest. I am planning to expand into paper and look for some in Dalton. Please give an update! :)

    I never really got into paper.

    I don't know how deep into it I might go at this point. Just a couple of weeks of information and I'm a bit overwhelmed and confused about several things. I do think I will add some notes that I really like, but I am not seeing a big collection in my future. Please let me know if you are setting up a table next month. Would love to meet you in person, see what you are selling and hopefully find something I like! :)

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