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YQQ - Business vs. Specimen strikes

Thanks for posting your questions earlier this month, YQQ.

I finally was able to catch up (somewhat) on this board and saw your 2 threads on this subject. Yours were important questions, for those who are used to more formalized definitions of proof vs. business strike US coins, and with more examples to draw from down there.

I find the available documented definitions of P/L versus Specimen versus well struck business strikes to be inadequate. There is much anecdotal info to clarify, but there seems to be no formalized document widely available, with graphics and some decent metrics, as to how to differentiate these coins, prior to 1960.

The experienced Cdn collectors can pick out BS vs P/L right away, while I'm left wondering how they did that. Apparently, it's more about the sharpness of the legends than the finish of the fields, since I have a 1953 set that looks P/L but was classified by 2 experts as BS. That set has ruled and buffed metal fields seen under 5x mag, but that apparently is irrelevant, and because of bag marks and the lack of sharpness of the legends, this is easily recognized as a nice business strike. The coins are even cameo like. I don't doubt the assessment of the expert opinions, rather, I realize that there is a lack of clear cut information available, and I have much to learn.

When I get the time, I'll sit down with P/L and BS sets and carefully examine the differences, qualitatively, myself.

Meanwhile, we are lucky to have the likes of Rob Turner to take the time to formalize minting knowledge of Vic Large Cents (I'm 1/2 way thru D&D, and having a ball).

Canadian Numismatics needs more of this kind of earnest documentation from their experienced collectors, on all sorts of topics. Yet it is still fun to meet the more experienced collectors at shows, first hand, and learn from them directly.

Happy Hunting. Ray

Chi-TownRay, 3/12/2011
CCRS member since: 2/12/2011
Posts: 22

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YQQ - Business vs. Specimen strikes (Chi-TownRay, 3/12/2011)

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