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Should the "1858/7 weak" Flying Eagle be a separate variety?

DMWJRDMWJR Posts: 5,975 ✭✭✭✭✭
edited September 26, 2017 7:02AM in U.S. Coin Forum
Doug

Should the "1858/7 weak" Flying Eagle be a separate variety?

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    messydeskmessydesk Posts: 19,704 ✭✭✭✭✭

    It already is a separate variety, since you and the rest of the market differentiate it from both the non-overdate and the strong die state. You may have to go into specialists' attribution guides so see them, but there are other varieties cataloged separately due to die stage. For Morgan dollars, the most notable of these are the 1882-O/S EDS vs. LDS, where the EDS varieties are all much more rare and valuable than the LDS coins. There's also a 7/8 TF reverse that is initially a strong reverse, but is later polished to a weak reverse.

    Bottom line, if the difference is significant enough from the standpoint of value and/or appearance, catalog it.

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    mannie graymannie gray Posts: 7,259 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @messydesk said:
    It already is a separate variety, since you and the rest of the market differentiate it from both the non-overdate and the strong die state. You may have to go into specialists' attribution guides so see them, but there are other varieties cataloged separately due to die stage. For Morgan dollars, the most notable of these are the 1882-O/S EDS vs. LDS, where the EDS varieties are all much more rare and valuable than the LDS coins. There's also a 7/8 TF reverse that is initially a strong reverse, but is later polished to a weak reverse.

    Bottom line, if the difference is significant enough from the standpoint of value and/or appearance, catalog it.

    @messydesk said:
    It already is a separate variety, since you and the rest of the market differentiate it from both the non-overdate and the strong die state. You may have to go into specialists' attribution guides so see them, but there are other varieties cataloged separately due to die stage. For Morgan dollars, the most notable of these are the 1882-O/S EDS vs. LDS, where the EDS varieties are all much more rare and valuable than the LDS coins. There's also a 7/8 TF reverse that is initially a strong reverse, but is later polished to a weak reverse.

    Bottom line, if the difference is significant enough from the standpoint of value and/or appearance, catalog it.

    Well stated.

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    DMWJRDMWJR Posts: 5,975 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited September 26, 2017 6:16PM

    Just a few short year ago, and after the passing of a great FE collector Tom Fore, PCGS decided to add the "weak" 1858/7 to the complete registry set. I disagree very much, so I emailed the registry folks and they told me to e-mail Ron Guth as he made the decisions. Well I did e-mail him probably six times over a two year period without so much as a reply of any sort.

    As to collecting by die state, I don't know anyone who collects Flying Eagle or Indian Head Cents by die state. I am very aware that it happens in older series with smaller productions and especially prior to the steam press in 1836, where die state signifies the emission sequence of coins with earlier states more preferred, and it also helps in determining the order of die marriages. Earlier die states = sharper detail and is recognized throughout the coin collecting hobby. While there is proof of certain die marriages in the FE/IND series, only the most hard core would want a later die state if they already owned an earlier die state, which is the case with the 1858/7 weak. The market will always recognize the distinction with its pocketbook.

    The 1922 has three different varieties, strong reverse, weak reverse, and weak D. This is in recognition of three different die marriages - not the states of one die. Apparently when the obverse of the 1922 no D was put in production, it was paired with an older reverse die, and the older die eventually broke. The reverse die was replace with a new die, created the 1922-d No D Strong Reverse. The use of the term "weak" in this instance signifies a different die marriage, not the condition of the same pair of dies.

    1858/7 Strong - aka Snow 1. These are known for full strike on both sides in the early die state (A). Later during the striking process, the dies either tilted or moved in the usage of the die causing some weakness to start showing up during the striking process. This signifies the beginning of stage B, where the flatness on the obverse tail area and the reverse right wreath begin showing slightly. As the use of the dies continued, the discrepancy became much greater such that the tail became very flat and the right wreath, very flat.

    Examples are below:

    Die state A:

    Die state B:

    "Weak" version from Coinfacts:

    The term "weak" for an 1858/7 was usually used to mean the dot above the date and the top corner of the seven were barely visible or not at all, but the rest of the diagnostics were present. If you look at Coinfacts, the only coin photographed for the weak designation shows no dot and a tad of the 7. The overdate is weak, filled in or ground off. This happens all the time with other coins, it is not a call for a separate variety. In fact, it is not really even a separate state of the die. Notice how the reverse on the "weak" is well centered around the edge.

    Now look at the edges of Die state C of the strong variety below. Even though it is a later stage, the dot and top of the seven are still prominent.

    You can blow these images up on Coinfacts and see the detail more clearly.

    I have to borrow from Rick Snow's book to show you the S-7. Clearly an overdate and no dot over the date:

    No right minded collector who owns an 1858/7 prominently showing the dot and top of the seven is going to buy a coin that has the diagnostics, but doesn't show the overdate. That's why no one has one in their set. I won't buy one, so I guess I will never be 100% complete. When Tom's set was retired, the weak had not been designated yet, so he was able to be 100% complete without having to buy a weak 1858/7.

    Doug
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    DMWJRDMWJR Posts: 5,975 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Geez, I don't know how you guys got to post between my poll and the substantive post that goes along with it.

    Doug
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    DMWJRDMWJR Posts: 5,975 ✭✭✭✭✭

    So, should I have added another poll alternative - "It's DMWJR's problem, we don't care about it."

    Doug
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    DMWJRDMWJR Posts: 5,975 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Messydesk - the only distinction is that if you have a strong showing of the overdate, you do NOT want to buy a coin that may be from the same obverse die, but doesn't show the overdate. Would you buy a chain cent that showed no chain? A 1933 Saint that didn't show the date? An upside down jenny with no plane?

    Would you want to show it to someone and say, "Yeah, this is the overdate, but you'll have to take my word for it because you can't see it."

    Doug
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    messydeskmessydesk Posts: 19,704 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @DMWJR said:
    Messydesk - the only distinction is that if you have a strong showing of the overdate, you do NOT want to buy a coin that may be from the same obverse die, but doesn't show the overdate. Would you buy a chain cent that showed no chain? A 1933 Saint that didn't show the date? An upside down jenny with no plane?

    Would you want to show it to someone and say, "Yeah, this is the overdate, but you'll have to take my word for it because you can't see it."

    All the more reason to catalog it accurately, as far as I'm concerned. In so doing, you would also indicate with commentary that it is not as desirable as the die stage showing the overdate.

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