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Determining If A Predecimal 50% Coin Is Proof

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Valued Member
58 Posts
 Posted 10/11/2022  06:06 am Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add totty to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
So I recently bought a bunch of mostly 50% silver in a deceased estate lot at auction. There were some absolute beauties in the mix, well-struck, and perfectly uncirculated late-predecimal silver. I've attached pictures of the 1961 shilling and 1962 6d as reference. In the mix, there is also really nice 3d from 1960 and '61, another '62 6d, a '60 shilling, and another '61 shilling. All are in a similar condition to the pictures. The most striking (no pun intended) to me is how well-struck they are, in hand they're even nicer- every hair is visible.

My question: is it possible these are proof coins? If so would there be any definitive way of knowing? I'm sure they'd grade as uncirculated at the very least, but I am a rather wishful thinker
Thanks for your thoughts!

Bedrock of the Community
20588 Posts
 Posted 10/11/2022  07:28 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add sel_69l to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Although the fields of Australian 50% silver pre decimal proofs are not mirror finished, they do, in fact, display obviously smoother fields than do coins struck for circulation, as well has having well struck design detail.
For these reasons, I do not believe that the coins pictured are proofs.


To know for sure what a pre decimal 50% silver proof should look like on Google images, search:
Google images:- '1959 proof Florin'
Also search: '1959 Proof Florin'

All 1959 Florins circulation coins displayed an 'egg' master die flaw at the feet of the emu. None of the 1959 proof Florins displayed this feature. Have a look at the smoother fields of the 1959 Proof Florin, and compare with the fields of the coins pictured in this thread.
Radial lustre is never very obvious with 50% silver proof coins, because the dies normally have very few coins struck from them, and so radial lustre never has a chance to present itself, as it does from dies used for circulation coins.
Edited by sel_69l
10/11/2022 07:48 am
Valued Member
483 Posts
 Posted 10/14/2022  09:15 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add echidna to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
The PCGS pop report has super high res pics (3000 x 6000) of the proofs.
You will need to hit the little arrow in the top right hand corner in order to download the higher res pics.
Watch your top knot
Pillar of the Community
2139 Posts
 Posted 10/22/2022  04:34 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Mr T to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I remember years ago there articles listing the die markers for 1953-1963 proofs but I don't know off the top of my head.
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