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Ken Potter's Variety Vault!

Celebrating Over 50 Years In Numismatics!

Our 41st Year Of Producing & Dealing In Silver Art Bars, Silver Rounds & Coins!

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1998, 1999 & 2000 Ty-2 Proof Style "Wide AM" Reverse

1983 - 1985-D - 1997 - 1998 Brass Plated 1c Strikes

Repro Errors

Error Coins

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Detecting Counterfeit Gold Coins Book

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Plain Edge 2007 Adams Dollars

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The Simpson's Collector Bronze, Silver, Nickel "Coins"

Adult Theme Coins/Silver Bars/Medals/Rounds


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New! Cherrypickers' Guide

Ken Potter to Speak: an Introduction To Error-Variety Coins
Northwest Detroit Coin Club

April 28th, 2015


Ken Potter presenting the CONECA Introduction To Error-Variety Coins at the Michigan State Numismatic Society



   Ken Potter will be at a Northwest Detroit Coin Club meeting to present CONECA's Introduction To Errors & Varietes Powerpoint Show (which he created) on April 28, 2015.  The meeting is located at the Livonia Senior Center, 15218 Farmington Rd, Livonia, MI 48154. It starts at 7:30 and anybody can attend. The presentation will be about a half-hour with a period of time for questions after the show.  If you have coins for Ken to examine it might be a good idea to get to the meeting early.  Ken and President Gary Kelly expect to be there to set up and make coffee at around 6:30.  Ken has been a member of NWDCC for about 35 years.





Ken Potter To Offer Free Error-Variety Coin Exams
At Michigan State Numismatic Society Spring Convention
April 19, 20, 21 2013




            April 20013 -- Noted error-variety coin columnist and author, Ken Potter, will be attending the Michigan State Numismatic Society Spring Convention on Friday April 19 through Sunday April 21 2013, where he will be offering free error-variety coin examination services.  He will also have coinage dies, hubs, collars, punches and other tooling used in the minting process for a hands-on examination.  Many of the dies will show errors such as clashed dies, cuds, shattered dies, doubled dies, etc.

Potter will also be offering macro and photomicrography services at reasonable cost (if any) and will be offering autographed copies of his latest book, Strike It Rich With Pocket Change 3rd Edition that he coauthored with Dr. Brian Allen along with copies of the latest Cherrypickers' Guide To Rare Die Varieties, by Bill Fivaz and J.T. Stanton, which as editor, he will also autograph.

Application forms for membership in the Combined Organizations of Numismatic Error Collectors of America along with sample copies of their journal will be available. 

            Potter asks persons who intend to bring coins for an opinion to limit themselves to about five coins per person. He stated, "We may be able to fudge a bit on the five-coin rule but we cannot render opinions on boxes containing hundreds of coins.”

            The Michigan State Numismatic Society Spring Convention the Adoba of Dearborn, MI (formally The Hyatt). Directions, show times, and the convention show program can be found here >>> MSNS Spring Show.

The feature attraction of this show is the wide variety of dealers including most from outside the metro area from all around the country.  This offers an opportunity for local dealers and collectors to pick through fresh inventories. 

A majority of this show's dealers own shops or attend larger regional and national shows, are well established, offer nice inventories and are known for fair dealing.  This is one of the Great Lakes area's largest, exclusively numismatic shows with over 150 tables with dealers who buy, sell and trade US, Canadian, worldwide (including everything from ancient, medieval and modern); gold, silver, paper, bullion and collector coins.



A Giant Amongst Giants ...
My Memorial To Alan Herbert
by Ken Potter


Alan Herbert at CONECA's 2011 Errorama Banquet


    In 2002 Alan Herbert asked me to write the Foreword to his 6th edition of The Official Price Guide to Mint Errors (a honor that he asked me to repeat for his 7th edition).  As a memorial to him I'd like to present what I said about him then for all to read now as every bit of it still holds true.


Foreword (To Alan Herbert's 2002 6th Edition of The Official Price Guide to Mint Errors)


    In the face of decades of ignorance on the true causes of minting variety coins and intense ridicule from fellow hobbyists who perceived the collecting of these "curiosities" as a bit odd, the hobby continued to thrive and enjoy steady growth. In recent years its popularity has even surpassed the phase of being "trendy" and the hobby has become "respectable" in virtually all quarters.

    Today professional grading services what wouldn't touch a mint variety [error] in the past have jumped on the bandwagon and vie with each other to offer "variety and error coin attribution services," while promoters of major conventions woo the Combined Organizations of Numismatic Error Collectors of America for the presence of their annual Errorama celebrations!  Major auction houses that just a few decades ago essentially shunned error coins now solicit their presence and highlight them in their sales, while major dealers who previously regarded error and variety coins with scorn now enshrine them in professional certification holders and tout their attributes of grade, rarity, value, and desirability.

    There is no doubt that a larger part of the error and variety hobby's growth and acceptance can be directly attributed to the landmark works of Alan Herbert.

    In 1979 I discovered a variety on the obverse of a Canadian dollar coin.  This variety made headlines in the numismatic press and catapulted me right into the midst of an area of specialization to which I was virtually ignorant but to which I'd become hopelessly hooked forever.  Eager to learn more as quickly as possible, I obtained a used copy of Alan Herbert's 1974 first edition of The Official Price Guide to Mint Errors and quickly graduated to a new copy of the 1978 second edition.  These books opened up a new world of collecting possibilities that for me eased the boredom of mainstream date-and-mintmark collecting. 

    From that point on I eagerly read everything I could possibly put my hands on that offered me a greater understanding of my newly discovered, wonderful world of numismatic errors and varieties.

    Herbert's name was seemingly everywhere; he could be found penning columns and/or feature articles in Numismatic News, Error-Variety News, Coins Magazine, Coin Prices Magazine, World Coin News, Banknote Reporter, the CONE/CONECA ErrorScope, and others.

    In 1979 this giant amongst giants seemed to me to be unapproachable.  After all, how could a man this busy possibly have the time to talk to me?  To my surprise he made the time, and throughout the years has offered his advice and expertise in all areas ranging from the error/variety coins themselves to the how-to's of coin photography. Today I regard him as the most influential individual who has helped me with my writing and research in this area.  Due to his persistent efforts to continually update, refine, and correct hobby information throughout all the previous editions of all his books and his other works, Alan Herbert continues to stand tall as a giant in this hobby, and this book will undoubtedly educate and delight new generations of collectors well into the 21st century. #


    In closing I'd like to say that the last time I saw Alan Herbert was at the 2011 ANA Summer Convention in Chicago.  He spent a lot of time at the CONECA table and we spent hours chatting about the good old days and current events.  When he reached into his pocket to purchase a ticket for the CONECA Banquet (as he had always done in previous years) I insisted on paying for it myself.  It was my honor - a very small way of saying thank you for all he had done for me. 

    Since I was the CONECA officer that manned the CONECA table the majority of the time, dealers and grading services often sent folks over to me to get an opinion on a suspect coin .  Time after time when somebody came to the table and asked for "Ken Potter" I often told them that he was "out to lunch" but that his mentor, the man that tutored him from the very start up to and including the how-to's of the photography set up that was sitting on the club table was there to answer their questions.  I introduced them to Alan and had him take the reigns.  I could see he was enjoying examining coins and expressing his opinions.  After he was done I always told the visitors "by the way -- I'm Ken Potter."

    Alan and I got a big kick out of this and it was a lot of fun (and some might argue that I'm "out to lunch" most of the time anyway).  While there is no doubt that I felt honored standing within the shadow of this giant I did not realize just how much the tiny things we did and said at that table would mean to me today as I wiped the tears from my eyes.  To me, Alan Herbert is and will always be my hero in this hobby.  I and CONECA will miss him dearly and cherish the time we had with him.  RIP Alan!

Whitman Publishing Releases New
Cherrypickers’ Guide: 5th Edition, Volume II

    September 28, 2011 -- Whitman Publishing is releasing a new, expanded, and updated volume of the award-winning Cherrypickers’ Guide to Rare Die Varieties of United States Coins. The fifth edition, volume II, covers half dimes to silver and modern dollars, plus gold dollars through double eagles, commemoratives, and bullion. It will be available in November 2011, online (including at www.Whitman.com), and from booksellers, hobby shops, and coin dealers nationwide, for $39.95. 
    Longtime die-variety specialist Ken Potter has joined the Cherrypickers’ team as editor of the new volume, working with the book’s original creators, Bill Fivaz and J.T. Stanton.
    “Cherrypicking” involves examining coins that look normal at first glance, but have unusual characteristics (like doubled and tripled dies, overdates, and repunched mintmarks) that can reveal a common coin to be a rare and valuable variety. The Cherrypickers’ Guide includes close-up photographs and descriptions to guide the reader, plus market information and values in multiple grades, for more than 780 varieties. Appendices include essays on types of doubling, how to examine your coins, Proof set varieties, collector clubs, recommended reading, and other beginner and advanced topics.
    Accurate pricing was an important goal for editor Ken Potter. “We coordinated our pricing with input from dealers, collectors, and other hobby experts and specialists,” said Potter. “For each variety we studied retail prices, coin-show activity, and real-world auction results, in detail, in order to report the most accurate values possible.”
    The new volume is 32 pages longer than the fourth edition, with more than 100 new varieties. “Most of the additions are within the popular modern series,” said Whitman publisher Dennis Tucker. “We have new Mercury dimes, more than a dozen each of new Roosevelt dimes and Kennedy half dollars, two dozen new Washington quarters, including State and National Park varieties, and new modern dollars. The entire bullion section is new, covering silver, gold, and platinum coins. And we’ve included additional varieties in the older coinage series, as well.”
    The Cherrypickers’ Guide can be pre-ordered online before its November rollout, including at www.Whitman.com.
Submitted by Whitman Publishing, LLC

Both volumes of the Cherrypickers' Guide are available from us here:
Books & Supplies

Commercial News ...
Strike It Rich With Pocket Change
 Third Edition Now On Stands!


    March 31, 2011 -- Have you ever knowingly spent $100 on a candy bar or $50 on a soft drink? As ludicrous as the concept sounds, the authors, Brian Allen and Ken Potter suggest that there is no doubt you have unintentionally done this numerous times without even knowing it, contending that there are just as many valuable coins in circulation today as there were 50 years ago. As more collectors and general coin enthusiasts are drawn to the treasure-hunt appeal of error and variety coins, interest in everyday coins is increasing as people take a closer look at the change in their pocket.
    The U.S. Mint's popular state, territorial and America The Beautiful quarter programs and the introduction of the Westward Journey nickels (in 2004-5) and a new dollar coin series has produced new discoveries and has generated greater attention and interest from the public.
    Thus the need for an updated version of this book, which helps make sense of it all and gives greater meaning to phrases including "Doubled Die," "Repunched Mintmark," "Double Edge-Lettering," "Misaligned Clashed Die" and "Die Dents." 
    In this new edition of Strike It Rich with Pocket Change readers learn about the different types of errors and varieties and how to spot them in varying types of coins, using the unique and useful combination of nearly 1000 photos and illustrations comparing properly minted coins with their error counterparts. In addition, the authors' insights help dispel common myths about error and variety coins.
    Among the coins included in the listings are Lincoln Memorial cents, Jefferson nickels, Roosevelt dimes, Washington quarters, John F. Kennedy half dollars, state quarters and all the dollar coins issued since the Eisenhower dollar through the current Presidential dollars. While the listings focus on the more valuable rare coins, the principles discussed throughout this book can be applied when researching and inspecting any coin for possible errors.
    The book can be found in book stores such as Barnes & Noble, Borders, Amazon.com, and many numismatic book and supply dealers. An autographed copy may be ordered direct from Ken Potter.

See The Offer Here

Ken Potter
2010 Inducted into the
CONECA Hall of Fame

Image by Al Raddi

    September 26, 2010 -- Error-Variety coin specialist, Ken Potter, was inducted into the Combined Organizations of Numismatic Error Collectors of America's Hall Of Fame at the American Numismatic Association's World's Fair Of Money this year in August. He is the ninth individual to receive this honor since CONECA was founded in 1983.

See The Rest Of Story

In The News ...
Legend Sells Unique 1943-D 
Bronze Cent For Record $1.7 Million

Image courtesy of Legend Numismatists

    September 23, 2010 -- The only known 1943-dated Lincoln cent mistakenly struck at the Denver Mint on a bronze planchet has been sold for a record $1.7 million by Legend Numismatics of Lincroft, New Jersey. The unique coin, not publicly known to exist until 1979, is graded PCGS MS64BN.
    The new owner is a Southwestern United States business executive who wants to remain anonymous, but who plans to exhibit this coin and others in January at the Florida United Numismatists convention.
    He also purchased in the same transaction through Legend a 1944 Philadelphia Mint cent struck on a zinc planchet, graded PCGS MS64, for $250,000, and an experimental 1942 Philadelphia cent mostly composed of tin for $50,000. The unnamed new owner plans to exhibit these coins and others at the Florida United Numismatists convention in January.
    "The 1943-D bronze cent is the most valuable cent in the world, and it took four years of aggressive negotiations with the coin's owner until he agreed to sell it. The new owner is proudly now the only collector to ever own the all-time finest and complete sets of Philadelphia, Denver and San Francisco 1943 bronze cents and 1944 steel cents," said Laura Sperber, President of Legend Numismatics.
    "The new owner is a prominent Southwestern business executive who's been collecting since he was a teenager, searching through pocket change looking for rare coins. As a youngster he thought he'd actually found a 1943 copper cent in circulation but it was not authentic. He still has that in his desk drawer, but now he's the only person to ever assemble a complete set of genuine 1943 bronze cents, one each from the Philadelphia, Denver and San Francisco Mints. He will display that set at FUN along with his 1944 Philadelphia, Denver and San Francisco zinc cents," said Sperber.
    The anonymous collector who formerly owned the coin "donated it to a charitable organization so they could sell it with all of the proceeds going to the charity," according to Andy Skrabalak of Angel Dee's Coins and Collectibles in Woodbridge, Virginia who acted as agent on behalf of the former owner.
    "As a specialist in small cents, this transaction is the ultimate accomplishment for me and I'm privileged to be part of it. I don't think it will ever be duplicated in my lifetime," said Skrabalak.
    Zinc-coated steel was used for producing cents in 1943 to conserve copper for other uses during World War II, but a small number of coins were mistakenly struck on bronze planchets left over from 1942.
    "We estimate that less than 20 Lincoln cents were erroneously struck in bronze at the Philadelphia and San Francisco Mints in 1943, but this is the only known example from the Denver Mint," explained Don Willis, President of Professional Coin Grading Service.
    Sperber said the collector's historic, mis-made World War II era cents will be displayed during the first three days of the FUN convention in Tampa, Florida, January 6 - 8, 2011. For additional information, contact Legend Numismatics at (800) 743-2646 or visit online at www.LegendCoin.com.

For More Stories Visit Our Article Index At:
The Educational Image Gallery

Discolored Sac & Prez Dollars
What Are They?

    June 27, 2009 -- Starting in 2000 when the Sacagawea dollars were first released to the public, collectors began finding coins with surface discoloration that ranged from light to dark and spotty to relatively uniform.  Colors ranged from all shades of brown to olive-green to gray or nearly black with a touch of iridescence thrown in for good measure.  Nobody knew what the discoloration represented and after the hobby made several inquires to the Mint, the prevailing answer seemed to be that they were the result of incompletely or improperly washed planchets.  To some it seemed a dubious answer but it was all we had.  Additionally, it seemed that fewer were being found on later-date issues.  This was probably because, like its predecessor, the Susan B. Anthony dollar, it flopped with the public and far fewer were minted after 2000 with those that were produced restricted to numismatic sales.  In time the subject just fizzed out and was forgotten.

See The Rest Of The Story

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In The News ...
DC Quarter DDR Sees Commercial Interest

Photo © Ken Potter 2009 / Coin Courtesy of Lee Maples
Here is the photo of Lee Maples' 2009-D DDR reported April 1

    June 27, 2009 -- According to a story in the May 12 issue of Numismatic News, A 2009-D District of Columbia quarter has turned out to be one of the most prominent of the centralized doubled dies seen in recent years. It boasts very strong doubling of ELL of Duke Ellington's last name, some doubling of the piano keys and panel below. All these elements were shifted diagonally to the southeast of the normal design with very wide separation.
    Prominent hobbyists like what they see of it so far. It has the makings of a commercial winner if a sizable number can be found.  A number of experts in the field who have some knowledge of the commercial market for doubled dies were interviewed and their comments noted in the story.

See The Numismaster Story

See More DC Quarter Doubled Die Listings Here

For More Stories Visit Our Article Index At:
The Educational Image Gallery

In The News ...
New Centralized Canadian Doubled Die Dollar Found

Photo © Ken Potter 2009 / Coin courtesy of Steve Olter

    June 02, 2009 -- This month's lead coin in Ken Potter's World Coin News column, Visiting Varieites, is a very interesting doubled die shown on a Canadian 1978 proof-like nickel dollar.  According to Potter, "Steve Olter of Michigan sent it in asking what I though of the raised area found on the reverse Voyageur design.  The area in question is found on the island fairly well centered between the Indian and fur trader that the Mint refers to a “voyageur.”  At first glance it was clear that it did not exhibit the usual characteristics of a die dent, die gouge or die break.  It was smooth and rounded as if it has been hubbed there as a part of the design.  Since it certainly did not belong there and had to be a displaced area of “extra design” from an early hubbing I determined that it was just a matter of examining the coin to find out were the point of origin of the secondary design was.  In short order I found the most probable answer.  The extra design appears to fit well within the confines and shape of the lowermost left branch of the left evergreen tree."  Other coins featured included repunched date on a Canadian 1899 cent sent in by Olter and a 1965 Canadian Small Beads nickel with an interesting die gouge sent in by Jerry Kennison.

For More Stories Visit Our Article Index At:
The Educational Image Gallery

Commercial News ...
World's Greatest Mint Errors Now Available!

    May 15, 2009 -- World's Greatest Mint Errors is an enjoyable resource packed full of some of the most dramatic, rare and extraordinary mint errors and die trials ever assembled in one publication.
    According to author, Mike Byers, "this book combines stunning imagery with the most accurate information available to provide anyone interested in mint errors with the latest information on mint error coins from the United States and around the world.
    The release of World's Greatest Mint Errors will ignite an interest in non-collectors and advanced collectors alike. This book is a must have for every numismatic library!"
    The United States Mint produces billions of coins each year. But, on occasion, a coin escapes the Mint that was never intended for general circulation. These most unusual coins, called mint errors, can fetch tens of thousands of dollars from dealers or collectors in the numismatic market.
    For anyone interested in learning more about these uncanny mint-made mistakes, World's Greatest Mint Errors is an enjoyable resource packed full of some of the most dramatic, rare and extraordinary mint errors and die trials ever assembled in one publication.

    Hundreds of spectacular mint errors are pictured. Each error coin photo is presented in full color, and enlarged to enhance the smallest details. Some of the error coins featured in this book have never been seen by the public before, and each is described in great detail as to the type of error, the assigned grade, rarity and estimated value.
    Byers, also included at the end of most chapters are extensive price charts. " This pricing was compiled by leading mint error dealers from within the professional numismatic community and will serve the reader well as a useful guide to mint errors and die trial values. The information found within these pages will bring anyone interested in mint errors up to date with the latest information on new discoveries, new types of errors and a collection of some of the most dramatic, unique and spectacular mint errors and die trials from the United States and around the world."
    Releasing today on May 15th, look for copies of World's Greatest Mint Errors at your local coin shop, or visit amazon.com. You can also order from Zyrus Press by mailing to PO Box 17810, Irvine, California 92623, calling (888) 622-7823, or online at zyruspress.com.

    Read More About The Book & Mike Byers

Collectors Share ...
Truckin' Cherrypicker Finds 3-Legged Buffalo

by Lee C. Roschen
"The Truckin' Cherrypicker"

Lee Roschen holds his thumb just below the unexpected 1937-D Three-Legged Buffalo Nicklel found in this collection.

     June 08, 2009 -- I had to pass on my latest coin finds! A few months ago on my trucking travels, I stopped at a small town bank here in Minnesota ...one I had never stopped at before. In five rolls of half dollars, I found 31 silver and silver clads, including two 1964's. Not bad! So I badly wanted to stop at that very same bank as soon as possible again and did so a bit over a month ago. This time I plunked down $160 for sixteen rolls. I figured this time I would score maybe 80-90 silver halves, but ended up with only 28. However, this time the keepers included a 1954-D Franklin, a 1942 Walker, two 1964's, and the rest were 40% silver-clads. But that doesn't compare with what I came up with on Saturday morning 4-25-2009.
    I stopped at an antique store west of Minneapolis, and after looking more closely at some partially filled Whitman coin folders, purchased a Buffalo nickel folder with 43 Buffalo nickels in it for $75.00.
    About a half dozen didn't even have visible dates. This was one of the types of folders that has the clear plastic inserts that enables one to clearly see both the reverse and obverse sides of the nickels. I noticed toward the end of the folder that it had two (2) slots for 1937-D nickels ...one for the normal copy, and one for the rare 3-legged nickel. Both slots had a 1937 nickel in them, and I expected to find a filler coin in the 3-legged nickel slot being that the person who originally put this set together inserted dateless Buffalo nickels as I mentioned earlier. I was stunned when I spotted with the naked eye that the coin that was in the 1937-D 3-legged nickel slot was indeed just that!
    I immediately closed the folder, and calmly said to the clerk "yeah, I'll buy this one." In my opinion the coin grades VF-20. I have never had such an easy cherrypick as this one, and never one such as sweet.
    This folder also included a few nicer grade semi-key nickels, including a 1937-D with an RPM east in EF-45, a 1923-P in EF-40, a 1927-S in EF-40, a 1927-D in VF-20, and a 1926-S in Good-4. Needless to say, I will be stopping by this place again in the future to see what other good stuff has been overlooked behind the glass display case. Ironically, I had just talked with Cherrypickers' Guide co-author J.T. Stanton earlier that morning for the first time in several years. I had to call him back a short while later to inform him of my find as I know he like hearing about that kind of thing.  These are the latest finds from my trucking travels.

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In The News ...
2007-P Adams Dollar Edge Variations Noted

Two views of the so-called Matte Finish Edge -- the coins are also smaller in diameter w/thicker rims than normal.

Two views of the so-called Small and Large Font 2007-P Adams dollars.  Notice the narrow chisel-like recesses
of the "Small Font" and the wide recesses of the "Large Font" especially noticeable on the 7 and P.

    September 29, 2008 -- Back in September of last year I wrote a story for Numismatic News about several different edge variations that had been observed by various collectors over the country on 2007-P John Adams dollars.  One of the most important is what was being referred to as a Matte Finish edge on the 2007-P Adams dollars.  Another was the so-called Small and Large Font Edge Lettering dollars.

You can read more about them here:  Edge Varieties.

You can find them offered for sale here:  http://koinpro.tripod.com/ErrorVarietyList.htm.

In The News ...
PCGS Certifies 1969-S Doubled Die Cent

Click Picture To See PCGS PhotoCertificate
Photos courtesy of Professional Coin Grading Service

    October 25, 2007 -- Yes, you can still find valuable coins! Professional Coin Grading Service has certified a recently discovered modern rarity, a 1969 San Francisco Mint doubled die obverse Lincoln Cent. It's graded PCGS Mint State 64 Red and tied for the finest known!
The coin was discovered by Michigan collector, Michael Tremonti, who was examining two rolls of uncirculated 1969-S cents on October 3. After consulting with well-known error-variety expert, Ken Potter, he (Potter) submitted the coin to PCGS. 

    "I was totally amazed that this coin could turn up out of nowhere. The coin is completely original and full mint red. It's a beautiful near-Gem example," said David Hall, PCGS co-founder and president of Collectors Universe, Inc. (NASDAQ: CLCT). "What an incredible find! This could be a six-figure coin." 

    Including this latest discovery piece, the PCGS Population Report indicates only 23 1969-S doubled die cents from Very Fine to MS-64, and only two are graded Mint State Red.

    The coin discovered by Tremonti has strong doubling on the obverse in the date, 1969, and the words, LIBERTY and IN GOD WE TRUST. It's described by Potter as "a Class I Rotated Hub with counter-clockwise doubling."

    A1969-S doubled die cent, graded PCGS MS-64 Red Brown was sold for $85,100 in the Bowers and Merena Auctions sale in August. The Tremonti coin is full red, tied for finest known with one other MS-64 Red, and with no higher grade examples in the PCGS Population Report.

    PCGS is a division of Collectors Universe, Inc.  For additional information about PCGS, call Customer Service at (800) 447-8848 or visit online at www.PCGS.com.

1969-S Doubled Die 1c Roll Find May Hit $100,000

"Fresh" 1969-S Doubled Die Obverse Lincoln Cent Found In Roll

PCGS Certifies 1969-S Doubled Die Cent by PCGS

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In The News ...
Strike It Rich With Pocket Change Gets
Extraordinary Merit Award!

     October 20, 2007 -- Authors Brian Allen and Ken Potter received an Extraordinary Merit Award from the Numismatic Literary Guild for their book Strike It Rich With Pocket Change.  It was accepted for us by our publisher's representative Dave Harper at the NLG Bash held at the American Numismatic Association Convention in Milwaukee this August. Both of us would like to say "Thank You" to the NLG for the honor!  We'd also like to thank Krause for making it possible!  More information on the book can be found here:  Books & Supplies

Collector Finds ...
PCGS Certifies Discovery Coin
Plain Edge Jefferson Dollar

Photo © Ken Potter 2007

    October 17, 2007 -- Professional Coin Grading Service of Newport Beach, CA has certified and graded the first Thomas Jefferson dollar to be found with a plain edge or what others call a smooth edge or missing the inscription.  The coin was originally reported by Bruce Countryman of Iowa who eventually sold it to Ken Potter.  The coin is still thought to be unique and is graded MS65.

     See PCGS Cert Verification Here

Read The Numismatic News Story Here

     October 20, 2007 -- It has come to our attention that "several hundred" possible "smooth edge" errors have been found.  According to a story appearing in Coin World, Fred Weinberg purchased the lot and sent it to PCGS for grading.  While Coin World crawled out on the limb and stated that they were "smooth edge" errors in their headline and opening paragraphs to the article, they also say further down in the article: "Weinberg said until he was able to physically examine all of the coins in the hoard, he believed the possibility existed that the coins might have exhibited the weak edge lettering for which thousands of pieces have been reported."  As such, at this point in time, we have no confirmation that any quantities exist but leave the door open that the possibility exists.  We will report on it further as we learn more.

     October 25, 2005 -- It has been confirmed that several hundred "Smooth Edge" Jefferson dollars were found and certified.  According the the official population report for the variety, exactly 301 pieces have been certified by PCGS with grades ranging from a single MS64 to a single MS68 and all the others with grades obviously falling in between.  These coins came to light three weeks after the original find reported by Bruce Countryman of Iowa and are said to have come from the Midwest.  Other details have been sketchy but we will report further as we learn more.

For More Stories Visit Our Article Index At:
The Educational Image Gallery

Collector Finds ...
"Fresh" 1969-S Doubled Die Obverse
Lincoln Cent Found!

Photo © Ken Potter 2007

     October 17, 2007 -- Error-variety coin dealer, Ken Potter of Michigan announces that a “fresh” 1969-S Doubled Die Obverse #1 Lincoln cent has been discovered.  He said that a “local collector” cherrypicked a specimen from out of an uncirculated roll on October 6.  The coin was consigned to Potter to handle its sale and is currently at Professional Coin Grading Service of Newport Beach, CA for certification and grading.  He feels that it may very well tie for the finest piece graded or exceed it. He says that it appears to be just one of two mint state specimens known that is full red. 

See The Rest Of The Story & Images  

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The Educational Image Gallery

Collector Finds ...
2007-P Thomas Jefferson Doubled Die Reverse Found!

Photos © Ken Potter 2007

Click photo for larger image

Click photo for larger image

     August 24, 2007 -- On August 16, the day the new Thomas Jefferson Presidential dollars were released to the public, Chuck Chichinski of Bellefontaine, Ohio went to his bank to obtain his two rolls of the dollars.  Having read a report on the www.coins.about.com website that doubled dies existed on the Adams dollars, he quickly went to work to see if any of the new Jeffersons he had obtained had a similar affliction.  By the third or fourth coin in his first roll, he discovered that he had found his first Jefferson dollar doubled die reverse!  

See The Rest Of The Story

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Note:  We Are Buying And Selling This Coin!  Call for our Buy/Sell Prices!

Breaking News ...
2007-P John Adams Dollars Found w/ Double Edge Lettering!

     Collectors in Florida and Michigan are finding quantities of the new 2007 P John Adams Presidential dollars with edge inscriptions applied twice to the edges.
     In each case the inscription “2007 P • E PLURIBUS UNUM • IN GOD WE TRUST” is impressed into the edge twice. 
     While most early sellers are being rather close-mouthed on exactly where they are finding them, the geographical locations identified for the “Item Location” in seller’s eBay auctions, where a number of the coins have appeared, suggests that most are being found in southeastern Michigan. Sellers are also noted from northern Ohio but it is not yet confirmed that these vendors obtained their coins in Ohio. Searchers in Florida also found at least 89 pieces by latest report.

See The Rest Of My Numismatic News Story Here

Note:  We Are Buying And Selling This Coin!  Call for our Buy/Sell Prices!

Double Edge Lettering &
Plain Edge 2007 Adams Dollars For Sale

New Die Study Released ...
1999 1c " Wide AM" Reverse Die Study

Clash Marks On The Reverse Of A 1999 Wide AM Cent 

     The first study published on the possible number of reverse dies involved in the production of the rare 1999 Lincoln cent variety with a proof-style "Wide AM" reverse was by G. J. Lawson in February of 2006 in his "List #96."  He identified four reverse dies as being used for the issue.  I found it hard to believe that a variety could be this rare (I estimate that fewer than 300 specimens are known) could have been struck by this many dies.  As such, I asked to examine the coins used in Lawson's study and walked away with different results.  I determined that two of the four dies that Lawson had identified as distinct reverse varieties may have in fact been stages of what I was able to attribute as being two distinct dies used for the issue. 

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Collector Finds ...
2006 Doubled Ear Lincoln Cent Found!

Images © Ken Potter 2007

    March 03, 2007 -- Wendell Carper of PA found the first strong doubled die obverse reported for the 2006 Lincoln cent!  The coin boasts a Lincoln portrait with a strongly doubled earlobe with the secondary lobe fully displaced from its point of origin to the southwest on Lincoln’s upper neck.  Significant doubling can also be seen in the lower areas of Lincoln’s beard.  Wendell, found this one while looking through a handful of cents back in August of last year and reported it on January 27 of this year.  It is the only example he found of this variety so far.
    The CONECA Variety Master Listing  carries two other doubled die obverses for the 2006 cent and both are described as exhibiting a medium spread.  Other variety coin examiners have also listed a number of 2006 cents with hub doubled obverses and all that have been published so far have exhibited minor spreads or thickening.
    This new doubled ear variety has been assigned an "FS" listing number of FS-01-2006-101 by J.T. Stanton and will be included in future editions of the Cherrypickers' Guide To Rare Die Varieties by Bill Fivaz and Stanton.  More information and images on the variety can be found in the next issue of Numismatic News and Coin World.
    Note:  Right after the NN article was submitted to the publisher, word of a second strong 2006 doubled die began to circulate on the Internet that also is of major significance.  This one is of a more classic off set hub appearance along with perhaps some tilted hub doubling on the date, LIBERTY and IGWT and possibly other areas.  It can be seen here:
Second Major 2006 Doubled Die Obverse Cent Found

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Collector Finds ...
Three More Oregon 25c Doubled Die Varieties Discovered!

     October 13, 2006 -- Three new doubled-die Oregon quarters join the initial find reported in Coin World and Numismatic News last month. Like the first variety, all were found in mint sets issued by the U.S. Mint, and all are Philadelphia issues.  News of the latest finds appeared in the October 16, 2006 issue of Coin World and on the Numismatic New website.

See The Full Story

See The Illustrated Oregon Listings

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Please Note I suffered a series of setbacks in keeping up with the new doubled die listings due to ongoing computer problems over a two month period of time last Fall that was followed by very strong holiday sales and then a period of illness (a dragged out knock-out cold or flu?) right through the holidays and into the New Year.  This is really an oversimplification of the problems that are all now behind me. I am  just now starting to catch up with piles of orders and will soon start up again with the Minnesota, Oregon and Westward Journey doubled die listings that are piled up here.  Hang in there please.

Collector Finds ...
Minnesota Quarter Doubled Die Obverse Found!

     October 09, 2006 -- The discovery of a doubled-die obverse may in fact be the beginning of a new string of discoveries as folks start to check both sides of the coin for doubled dies.  David Serbonich of New York sent in the first and only one to be reported thus far that is now listed as doubled-die obverse #1 (DDO#1) for this date, mint, denomination and type.

See The Rest Of The Story

See The Minnesota Doubled Die Listings

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Collector Finds ...
Doubled Die Oregon State Quarter Found!

Photo © Ken Potter 2006 / Coin courtesy of Troy Watkins

     September 16, 2006 -- Troy Watkins of Garrett, Ky., who was first to report a Minnesota doubled die, has now found a very significant doubled die reverse on an Oregon quarter!  The variety shows best as strongly doubled branches shifted to the south of the stronger primary design on the tall evergreen tree in the foreground to the right of the coin design. It also shows some doubling at the base of the highest relief areas of the rocky shoreline of the north-northeast rim of Crater Lake.  Stories on the variety can be found in the September 25 issue of Coin World and in the September 26 issue of Numismatic News.  

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Collector Finds ...
Proof  Minnesota Quarter Doubled Die Found!

Image courtesy of John Wexler

    September 16, 2006 -- Since the last update on doubled dies found on Minnesota quarters, 15 more varieties have been added to the list! Fourteen of the newest finds are on the Philadelphia issue (bringing it to a total of 39) while our 15th variety added to this week’s list is the very first find on a 2005-S proof coin.  Stories on the Proof quarter can be found in the September 18, 2006 issue of Coin World and in the September 26 issue of Numismatic News.

See The Rest Of The Story

See The Minnesota Doubled Die Listings

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Collector Finds ...
Leaf-Shaped Die Dent Found On Minn. 25c

A look at the Prebish specimen

Photo © Ken Potter 2006
Here is a look at the Serbonich specimen

Photo © Ken Potter 2006
Shot to show the shallow ridge around the die dent

     August 20, 2006 --  Whenever folks start looking more closely at an issue for a new discovery like a doubled die, they tend to find other thing too.  The search for 2005-P&D Minnesota quarters with the "Extra Tree" doubled dies is no different.  Lots of minor variety types and strike doubling damage is being found and submitted.  Perhaps one of the more interesting that came in is a leaf-shaped die dent that appears in the field over the second evergreen tree from the right of the state outline.  One can see evidence of metal displacement that surrounds the dent as a sort of trench all around its perimeter.  When a die is dented metal is of course pushed down.  In reaction, metal may be displaced upwards outside the perimeters of the dent. When the die is used to strike a coin the recessed dent is evidenced on the coin as raised metal while the raised area of metal displacement on the die shows as a shallow trench around the dent.  We often see this effect around Mintmarks that were punched into the dies.  So far at least three persons searching for the Minnesota doubled dies have found examples of these die dents with the first one reported to me by Colleen Prebish on July 28 and another one coming in from Dave Serbonich on August 6.  Both specimens are shown above. 

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In The News ...
PCGS Will Certify Minnesota Quarter Varieties

Photo © Ken Potter 2006 / Coin courtesy of Jennifer Snyder
Portions of the tree nearest the center of this image is doubled out
into the field on this "Extra Tree" variety found in a Mint Set.

    August 14, 2006 -- The Professional Coin Grading Service of Newport Beach, Calif., has announced that it will begin grading and attributing the 2005-P Minnesota state quarter doubled dies that have been found in recent weeks. These varieties were reported in front-page stories in the July 18 and Aug. 8 issues of Numismatic News. Additionally, since the Aug. 8 story was published, three new doubled die varieties have been found, including one in a government-issued mint set.

See The Rest Of The Numismatic News Story Here

See The Minnesota Doubled Die Listings

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Collectors Finding Doubled Dies!
2005-P Minnesota Quarters Boast Extra Tree

Photo © Ken Potter 2006 / Coin courtesy of Troy Watkins

    July 11, 2006 -- According to a story in the July 18 issue of Numismatic News, (mailed out to subscribers on July 7), Troy Watkins of Garrett, Ky., has reported what specialists have now determined to be the first known doubled-die state quarter!  His find, on the reverse of a 2005-P Minnesota quarter, shows what is best described as a possible section of an evergreen tree floating free in the field within a stand of trees to the right of the state outline. This area of "design" represents the virtual dead center of the coin’s design.  This is an important key to its possible attribution because specialists who feel the coin has possibilities of being a doubled die believe it could be the result of a tilted hub that was seated into proper position during hubbing.

See The Rest Of The Story Here

     August 12, 2006 -- At least seven more doubled die varieties have been found on the Philadelphia issue while another has been reported on the Denver issue of the Minnesota quarter.  The first six varieties can be viewed now while the balance of varieties will be posted next week.

The Listings Can Be Seen Here

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What Is A Major Die Break (or Cud)?
And What It Isn't!

Photo © Ken Potter 2006

    Collectors more often than not refer to a major die break under the slang term "Cud."   The term has it roots in the early error-variety hobby when the use of nicknames was more prevalent than today. This is one of the few slang terms that has stuck.  No matter what you want to call it, a Major Die Break or "Cud" always involves a breakage of the die that includes a portion of its shank and field and or design areas.  

See the rest of the story

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Matte Unc 2005-P Bison Five-Cents
Doubled Die Obverse Found!

     Collectors who believed that the Mint stopped making doubled dies in the late 1990s are in for an eye-opener!  Long-time collector, Lonnie Helton of Ohio found a new doubled die obverse variety when he opened his 2005 Westward Journey Nickel Series Coin Sets on the day they arrived!  He ordered three sets in the last week of September and received them on October 11th; all contained the doubled die on the Philadelphia issue Bison coin.  This is an error type that the Philadelphia Mint has repeatedly denied can be made with the current single-squeeze hubbing presses in use there since the late 1990s.  

See the rest of the story here

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Bahamas 1975-1973 Dual Dated 5-Cent Variety Discovered
Obv: 1975 / Rev: "Phantom 1973"

     Perhaps one of the more enigmatic modern coins to come down the pike in recent years is the dual-dated 1975-1973 Bahamas five-cent piece sent in by error-variety specialist Joe Rizdy of Chicago. It's a coin that hints at the possibility that it may have just opened up the door for many more varieties of its kind be discovered!  It’s a coin that comes from a series that along with its other fractional cousins has been largely ignored over the years. That's about to change! There is finally something to look for!

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Is My 1958 Cent ...
"The" Doubled Die?

     Without question, one of the more frequent questions we field in reference to doubled dies revolves around the 1958 Lincoln Cent.   There is one key reasons for this -- it is an extremely valuable coin.  In fact, we think it could exceed $100,000 the next time one of the two examples known goes up for sale! 

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2005-S Kansas Silver Proof Quarter
w/Hoof-Shaped Die Dent

     Some time ago I sent images of a 2005-S Kansas Silver Proof quarter with a hoof-shaped die dent to specialist to review.  Although this dent is many times larger than others previewed as of late, some of those specialist began to draw comparisons of it to these other die dents suggestive that it was about the same in size.  However, this was not accurate!

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1970-S Small Date & Large Date
Lincoln Cent Comparisons

     The scarce 1970-S Small Date Variety shown above is characterized by a more delicate date (as compared to the Large Date variety) and will exhibit a "7" that is relatively level with the rest of the date. The word LIBERTY is weak and indistinct (particularly on the E and TY) on all specimens of this variety including proofs. Caution: The LIBERTY may also be weak on a Large Date so this is a poor indicator of the type but a strong LIBERTY does indicate that it is NOT the scarce Small Date variety.

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2004-D Wisconsin State Quarters
w/ Leaf-Like Die Dents/Gouges

Images © Ken Potter 2005

     I've been following the posts on Rec.collecting.coins on the new 2004-D Wisconsin die damage error or variety quarters (call them what you want, error or variety makes little difference), and I agree with Tom DeLorey's earlier comments 100% (his comments are copied at the end of this post). I received a set a couple of days ago from Bill Fivaz for examination and they confirmed my worst fears.  

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Numismatist Since 1959 ~ Serving The Collector Since 1973

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Notice to Mints and Their Agents:  Please note that we are always interested in purchasing unusual items that were not previously released or widely distributed that are of low mintage such as:  Presentation Pieces, Trial Strikes, Set Up Coins, Salesman's Samples, Error Coins, Pattern Coins, Lead Trials, Off Metals (deliberate or in error), Mules, Overruns, Plasters, Significant Art, Working Dies and/or Master Tools.  If you have anything unusual with a low mintage and wish to clear your vaults it will pay you to contact us.

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