Errors and Varieties

General discussions on the canadian coins errors and varieties.
lara4228
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Feb 20, 2011 1:56 pm

Errors and Varieties

Postby lara4228 » Wed Dec 28, 2011 8:23 pm

I enjoy this website but I feel this forum could use some more activity? Sorry to be a bummer, but usually forums have more answers that one post questions?

With that said, I do hope that mine will be answered to some degree.

How desirable are Canadian errors and varieties? While I understand that major errors would carry a larger premium than minor ones, but what about your "Die Shifting" and "Die Deteriorating" varieties? Are they just a classification to put imperfect coins or do they carry some sore of premium?

Also, where does one get such coins attributed and certified? Where would one sell certified or uncertified coins?

Thanks! I really do hope someone here can answer at some of my questions.

Lara4228

VancouverSilver
Posts: 18
Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2011 6:58 pm

Re: Errors and Varieties

Postby VancouverSilver » Wed Dec 28, 2011 10:27 pm

I am in no way an expert, but what I have observed is that the numismatic society's desires are the most important thing. I find it strange that one error will be very sought after while another error, perhaps even rarer, will be non-desired. I haven't yet observed any patterns in details but the die crack variations seem to be in less demand than things like hanging 3's or extra water lines, double date stamps.

What I have observed (as a newbie so take it with a grain of salt) is the following:

1. scarcity (example - 1921 Canadian Nickel. Worth several thousand times face value as few are known)
2. Spacing/layouts (examples - far 6 vs near 6)
2. added or missing features (example - 1936 dot penny, NSF 1953, harp or guitar strings, dots etc, extra water lines)
3. Double dates stamps (example 1946/6 nickel)
4. Materials (Silver/gold being most valuable).

After this I am not really sure about die cracks, rotations, shifts, bug eyes etc.

This would be an interesting project to pursue if it has not been done already. For some errors and variations, if only a handful of people have them the interest from the general population seems rather limited since they won't find them anyways. On the other hand, if the variation is as common as the baseline, the added value is not there as everyone has one (example - 1947 maple leafs).

Perhaps one of the experts could chime in on this and correct me if I am wrong (highly likely).

Duane

lara4228
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Feb 20, 2011 1:56 pm

Re: Errors and Varieties

Postby lara4228 » Fri Dec 30, 2011 10:35 pm

Thank you Duane.

I just put a 08 caribou quarter under my scope and I noticed it has "accumulations" all over the obverse.

Would this be considered a coin worth keeping or one to throw back into circulation? I have found a few of these and have be tossing them back into circulation. Maybe I shouldn't be?


Is there any type of internet database on variety/error Canadian coins? I really enjoy this site but I find it lacks a lot of visual referencing for each type.

Any help would help me some.

Bill in Burl
Posts: 607
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2008 7:41 am
Location: Golden Horseshoe, ONT

Re: Errors and Varieties

Postby Bill in Burl » Sat Dec 31, 2011 6:05 am

Varieties and Errors are 2 different things .. and the definition of a "variety" means different things to different people. Most Canadian variety collectors use the definition of a "variety" that Hans Zoell (the 1960's variety guru) used in his books on Major and Minor Varieties. He considered a Major Variety to be a coin that was different but that was produced with good planchets, with good dies (as OK'd or would be by the mintmaster), and with machinery operating properly. As such, Zoell considered Major Varieties (and most modern collectors do as well for collectible varieties) to be coins with differences in obverse type, fonts, spacings, vertical positioning, repunches, re-engravings, etc. By that definition, most machine or mechanical doubling would not be considered a Major Variety, although most current collectors consider any doubling with an easily seen offseret to be very collectible.

Other coins that don't meet the die, machinery, or planchet criteria are considered Minor Varieties or errors. Minor varieties(some consider these all "errors") include die cracks, cuds, plugs, clashes, chips, die striations, rotated dies, filled dies, planchet flaws, plating errors, and the like. Most of these are not very collectible and seldom carry any sort of premium. In many cases, many would sell at a discount over a normal collectible one because it wasn't perfect. Collectors of MS coins don't want a plating chip or die crack on an otherwise pristine example.

I am a hard-core Victoria Large Cent collector. For me, I pretty well stay to Zoell's definition for a Major Variety as to what constitutes something that I want to keep. Any "variety" needs to be easily seen with the naked eye or (at max) under an 8X loupe. Die cracks don't constitute a variety nor do most of the "gotta have one of these" descriptions on Ebay. A few years ago, a group of variety and error collectors got together at the RCNA in Niagara Falls and formed an organization for this collecting niche. It started out fast, but then lost some steam, but I think that new life is coming back as Variety collecting is getting a second wind. Here is the link .. http://www.cevna.com/
and you would be most welcome to join. I know very little about modern varieties because, once they started with plated coins, the quality control at the mints was less than perfect and poorly made coins were out in abundance. I consider these modern "errors" to be a quality control problem and not collectible. I have over 5000 Vicky large cents and will stick to them .. those I know about.

There are a couple other sites that you may want to visit to get more info and discussion:
http://www.canadiancoppercoins.com/
http://www.coincommunity.com/forum/foru ... ORUM_ID=32
http://www.cointalk.com/forum.php

I hope that this has helped you out. I would check into the CEVNA site if I were you .. there are some very valuable people on there who can help you .. likewise the Candiancoppercoin site .. which covers all Canadian coin denominations, paper and tokens. Good info, good folks.
Bill in Burl

Bill in Burl
Posts: 607
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2008 7:41 am
Location: Golden Horseshoe, ONT

Re: Errors and Varieties

Postby Bill in Burl » Sat Dec 31, 2011 6:18 am

Whoops! I posted the wrong subforum for CCF. Here is the one that you may want:
http://www.coincommunity.com/forum/foru ... RUM_ID=139
Bill in Burl

za75
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Apr 04, 2012 12:43 pm

Re: Errors and Varieties

Postby za75 » Wed Apr 04, 2012 1:05 pm

I think that we can find interesting errors in all types of error : as example, when a " Die crack " start on the rim and go near the center of the coin ( 50 % of diameter ), i think that such a coin is interesting :!:

In my point of view, the search of errors is very incentive for young collectors and for all collectors that state a drop of their interest in a " normal " collection of coins.
When i read some articles of Ken Potter, i think that more and more peoples think the same thing :D

rjd65
Posts: 57
Joined: Sat Sep 20, 2014 1:09 am

Re: Errors and Varieties

Postby rjd65 » Sun Mar 24, 2019 1:29 pm

I recently started organizing some of my collection. For my Victorian large cents I found myself being quite obsessed with die crack variations. In fact, I discovered some that were quite 'epic' in that they traversed a good portion of the coin. I think I find these interesting because my father was a Tool and Die maker and I worked at the company he worked at for a couple summers so I am thus drawn to details such as this. Bill if you are reading this can you explain the numbering system for die crack and other errors on this website. Where does it originate from? I understand the Zoell system but the system of numbers used on this site go into the thousands so I assume the gap in numbering for one denomination are due to varieties (whether major or minor) being assigned as they come up no matter what the denomination? Obviously there are many die cracks variations which have not yet been documented and although quite numerous they are nevertheless a finite number as there were only so many obverse and reverse dies used. With time and a suitable sample size one could conceivably document virtually all of them (IMO 90%). Anyway even though most collectors are not into this aspect of collecting I find die varieties extremely interesting. IMO. collectors who demand a MS coin to be as perfect as possible i.e no die cracks, are misguided. I would argue that a distinct die crack on a MS coin would add to its uniqueness and I for one would appreciate a coin such as this very much.
For the die varieties I have that are not depicted on this website, how would one go about declaring these and have them formally recognized with a number? Obviously a picture of the coin and die crack would have to be sent for consideration. Anyway, if enough die variety collectors were to provide info we could get to that 90% threshold in the not too distant future.
One final point, I have been able to discern specific dies and their degeneration with use. I have three 1881H large cents where the degeneration of one particular die is clearly apparent. VICTORIA gradually degrades to the missing lower part of the O and the broken or missing parts of the C and T as well. This obverse die was carried over to 1882H (unless of course another obverse die used in 1882 developed the same issue independently, which I am skeptical of) for a short time until they decided to repunch the O. One example of an 1882H that I have has a fully intact O that is bolder and clearly raised compared to the other letters in VICTORIA - with the C and T still compromised. Its all quite fascinating, but only the 'Tool and Die maker' geek in me allows me to appreciate it.
Ok, I'm done. Gone on a bit longer than I intended. RD

Bill in Burl
Posts: 607
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2008 7:41 am
Location: Golden Horseshoe, ONT

Re: Errors and Varieties

Postby Bill in Burl » Mon Mar 25, 2019 4:07 am

As far as I know, the number assignments on this site mean absolutely nothing. Members of this English site, as well as the original French site, submit photos of coins that have anomalies to the moderator. They assign their own names/ID's to any coin that "is not normal" and they go onto a random list and are assigned a number. It is not like the Zoell or Griffin or Turner or Haxby numbering systems .. they are submissions by ordinary collectors who sometimes certainly don't know the difference between an error and a variety and they are very liberal (and many times incorrect) on using the terms "doubled" or "doubling". A "variety" is a change made to a master or hub or working die INTENTIONALLY by the mint or the mintmaster .. Zoell described these as "Major Varieties" and most of his "Minor Varieties" in separate books are actually errors, not varieties. Varieties could/can be manual repunches, re-engraving, spacings, portrait mods, font size/type and anything else that has to do with an approved working die that is different from another die before use.

Die cracks are not varieties .. they are errors and most times are used as markers to ID and delineate actual varieties that may be there for that date. D/C's can/will ID die pairs and marriages, some of which can be quite scarce. Some Obverse dies have been married with 5-6 different Reverse working dies. The intricate design on large cent Reverses made the Obverse dies last 3-4 times longer than the dated side. People that are into die cracks, or other differences, are known as die trackers and they follow the progression of certain dies from newly made to destruction.

If you want to delve further into dies and die tracking, go to the Haxby site https://www.vickycents.com/ for the 1859's or to Rob Turner's book "Dies and Diadems" where the complete story from initial engravings on the masters go through all the steps/evolutions through subpunches, hubs, etc to the XXX working dies for each year. If you are a Large Cent fan, then you need to get Rob's books, especially the initial 1858 book and "Dies and Diadems".

I guess that this thread has emerged again after a number of years. Good luck on your collecting. I'm not sure if we've actually met, but I'm usually at the T.O. Coin Expos every year.
Bill in Burl

Bill in Burl
Posts: 607
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2008 7:41 am
Location: Golden Horseshoe, ONT

Re: Errors and Varieties

Postby Bill in Burl » Mon Mar 25, 2019 4:29 am

This site doesn't allow additions/corrections to your own posts/replies so I'll add this. In your last post you stated the following
" I have three 1881H large cents where the degeneration of one particular die is clearly apparent. VICTORIA gradually degrades to the missing lower part of the O and the broken or missing parts of the C and T as well. This obverse die was carried over to 1882H (unless of course another obverse die used in 1882 developed the same issue independently, which I am skeptical of) for a short time until they decided to repunch the O."

What you are describing IS NOT due to changes in a working die .. it is changes to the master or hub. The hubs are like old typewriter keys ... metal protrusions that make an impression on something else. It is the hubs that strike the steel blanks that turn the blanks into working dies. It may take the hub 2-4 smacks to make a working die with deep enough impressions to strike good coins. Each smack is preceded by quenching/hardening of the hub/punch and annealing(softening) of the working die blank. Any change (broken serifs, portions of letters, vine/stem breaks) to the hub will affect every working die that is made after that. A broken part of an "O" may be seen on 500,000 coins if happened early in the minting year making the dies or it may only affect 10,000 coins if near the end of the year and apparent on only 1 working die. Die cracks, on the other hand, may only be apparent on 100 coins if it develops just before it self-destructs.
Bill in Burl

rjd65
Posts: 57
Joined: Sat Sep 20, 2014 1:09 am

Re: Errors and Varieties

Postby rjd65 » Mon Mar 25, 2019 8:15 am

Thanks for that great explanation Bill. I will need to get into the books to refresh my knowledge on the entire process that was used in the 19th century. It seems that the making of the hub was time consuming and unless the ultimate product (minted coin) was totally unacceptable they would go with it for as long as possible? They obviously made this decision with the 'broken O' (and other minor defects of adjacent letters) of the 1881 and 1882s. No doubt more than one die was produced with this defect. This would then constitute a variety and not an error? So for the 1881 with doubling (some triple) on the legend (I have one of these with 13 of the digits showing clear doubling) was the die (which presumably was still in working order) repunched manually with typewriter type hub punches for each letter deemed unsat? Obviously this would constitute a variety then.

I will describe all my 'die cracks variations' as 'die crack errors' from now on as the term 'variation' can too easily morph into 'variety' for obvious reasons. Some of these die cracks can be quite extensive and as you state not many coins may have been struck prior to the die 'self destructing'. I have a couple coins minted with the same obverse die where the die crack has clearly progressed and another has developed on another part of the die - my nascent attempt at die tracking. Both errors should be tagged with the same number designator as they originated from the same die. One would need a huge hoard of coins or more realistically a group collector effort to do this endeavour justice - quality control after the fact.

I'm in Halifax and even though I am originally from London, ON I haven't gotten to TO in years. My son is a rabid Leaf's fan so I may find myself visiting again in the not too distant future. Rich

Bill in Burl
Posts: 607
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2008 7:41 am
Location: Golden Horseshoe, ONT

Re: Errors and Varieties

Postby Bill in Burl » Mon Mar 25, 2019 2:00 pm

All of the apparent doublings on 1881 and 1882 mintages are a combination of repunches of individual letters and digits, some die deterioration doubling, and lots of machine/mechanical doubling (MD). the 81's and 82's working dies were all from the 1876 Obverse hubs and matrixes, where they went form Obv 1's to 1a's to 2/1s to straight Obv 2's (new matix/hubs for the straight Obv 2's). There were multiple working dies for 1881 and 1882 and they were "corrected" as time passed by .. handpunching dies that needed sprucing up or to stop die cracks off serifs. Reverse dies lasted about 40-50,000 coins struck (on average) and Obverse about 2-4 times more than that. You have double, triple and quad punched letters and digits because the punch had to be hardened and the die annealed before each blow. Depending on the pressure/force of the press, some coins had to be repressed because the designs were not deep enough to be issued if not enough pressure was available at the beginning. It could have been hours, days or weeks between the individual whacks and they couldn't always get the handpunches just right .. or the workers had a liquid lunch and weren't seeing so well. The mechnical doubling happened when the keepers/screws that held the working die in place loosened and let it move slightly during the strike or as the hub retreated.

If you are into large cets, pick up a copy of the 2011 (65th edition) of Charlton. It has the large cent variety section in the back that I and 3 others wrote for Charlton.
Bill in Burl


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