Member Journal Entry:

Commemorating the Season

Posted: 12/1/2009 11:21:48 PM | Views:540

For once I got pretty much what I was expecting.

A few months ago I was going through a portion of my collection I seldom do - the less valuable items like modern proof sets and commemoratives. I was disturbed to see that a couple of the coins were developing an annoying milky haze. I decided to take them to the next Baltimore show (last month) and submit them to NGC for grading & encapsulation. I was expecting 1 or 2 68UCs and the rest as 69UC, with any 70s as a bonus.

The coins arrived last week, and results were in line with my expectations: 1 68UC, 17 69UCs, and 1 70UC. These coins have been added to my previously empty modern proof commemorative set. The nearly 12,000 points didn't get me very high in the category, but did push my overall rank up by a surprising 50 places, to 279.

I had been in the top 300 briefly once before. That was earlier this year after I added my Naftzger middle date large cents. When I sold the duplicates, I fell back to the low 320s. Then, as time passed my rank would jump a few places forward and then slowly fall, as my subsequent acquisitions were few and far between.

But about the Registry itself: Until I added these commemoratives I hadn't really noticed that point to price ratios can vary greatly for high grade coins in different categories. In the modern proof commemorative set, one can get over 1800 points for a PF69UC G$5 coin that can be had for a few Benjamins, while the nice large cents and half dimes that I collect get similar scores for substantially more dollars.

Now I'm not suggesting that registry points should track prices. Aside from the fact that prices can change substantially with time, there are too many variables that make such a system impractical. But someone with an eye toward moving up the rankings could target the high point to price coins and move up without having to spend too awful much. (And in a recent response to a registry friend's journal, I suggested a reasonably obvious way that one could accumulate points without any cost.)

Although I feel a bit of the competitive drive, I simply like the older U.S. coinage that's accessible to my budget too much to drop that for a silly ranking goal. Besides, it seems to me that the satisfaction you might obtain from a competition isn't very meaningful when you don't know the people with whom you are competing.

Anyway, here's a photo of the 70UC, with my wishes for a safe and joyous holiday season to all. Merry Christmas!

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