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Your Recommendations On Getting Back Into Numismatics

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Valued Member
United States
109 Posts
 Posted 06/12/2018  12:35 pm Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add CrusaderVW to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
So, I've taken a bit of a hiatus from collecting. I enjoy it a lot, but it's difficult to get back into numismatics. I have a committed interest in getting back into the community and in collecting, but I'm not sure where to start. Do y'all have any recommendations on how to stay interested? It seems rather depressing sometimes, because it often feels like coins aren't as interesting after you buy them and put them into ye olde album. In short, I'm looking for some tips on getting back into collecting, and on the topic of staying committed to it.
Pillar of the Community
United States
1492 Posts
 Posted 06/12/2018  12:59 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Alpha2814 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Can you tell us a bit about what you have collected so far, and if there's anything in particular that you do/not have interest in?

It's not uncommon for me to find the hunt more exciting than the actual find, but I have a certain amount of pride in what I have collected so far. Sometimes, when one set is nearly complete, it's hard to figure out what to collect next but then something surprises me with its appeal and I'm on the hunt again, documenting the quest and ticking off what I get. One case (bi-metallics) have always been interesting but it was another thread on here that showed the range of coins fitting that category. Another case (Chinese pandas) were not on my radar until I one showed up on a more general search (world bullion) and I was captivated by the designs.

For me, getting a set of Franklin halves (done!) or Peace dollars (3 to go) hasn't been as entertaining as bi-metallics or pandas. There's so much more history and art out there. Just keep an open mind, browse a lot (not just shops or auctions, but blogs, newsletters and magazines as well), and when you find yourself looking longer at a category, that's a cue.
Working on: Peace dollars (two to go), US type (early Bust era), Indian quarter eagles, Chinese pandas, and San Francisco tokens.

"Fear is the enemy of will. Will is what makes you take action; fear is what stops you, and makes you weak."
-- Sinestro to (my avatar) Hal Jordan, "Green Lantern" (2011)
Bedrock of the Community
United States
15824 Posts
 Posted 06/12/2018  1:16 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add moxking to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Where you are now, as far as your present collection, would certainly influence our recommendations.

Without that, I'd recommend attending a show. Most small to medium size shows will have plenty of coins, tokens, and currency. Many will be very inexpensive.

Look over the offering until you find items of interest and ask the dealer what they can tell you about that item. Some dealers won't, but the good ones will give you a brief history.

You might find a 2000 year old Roman coin, absolutely authentic, for $10. Or a civil war token for $20, or a box of world coins for a quarter each.

It won't take you long to get excited about something.
Pillar of the Community
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United States
5579 Posts
 Posted 06/12/2018  2:04 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Finn235 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
There is so much breadth and depth to numismatics that most fields could be said to be functionally bottomless.

I started out collecting pocket change, then dabbled between US classics and world coins before I randomly decided to build a Japanese type set - still one of my favorite albums to flip through.

I got bit by the ancient coin bug, and while not as cheap as 19th/20th century world coins, the diversity and historical intrigue is staggering.

And, if you really only enjoy the hunt and learning experience, try catch and release collecting - buy, learn, sell, rinse & repeat! You will minimize your losses, and eventually learn how to turn a profit, allowing you to pursue bigger game!
New Sale! Inexpensive classic Greek silver, over 2,400 years old!
Valued Member
United States
136 Posts
 Posted 06/12/2018  3:21 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add DKA-Numis to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I started out collecting all sorts of stuff before deciding that Early American Copper was my thing. The transitional types and the varieties of dies used was always intriguing to me. I only needed another two large cents to complete a date set. And then I lost my job.

I wanted to keep collecting and noticed that I was getting a lot of old British halfpence and French Revolution Sols/12 Deniers while looking for low grade American coppers. I started off in that direction. A 1793 US coin will set you back tens of thousands of dollars in some cases. A 1793 French coin will only set you back a few bucks. Older stuff in about the same grade cost me about the same amount. From there I started a non-US coin collection and have been going down that road ever since. There are so many interesting types across the nations that you could lose yourself in it, depending on what you are interested in.
Pillar of the Community
United States
1443 Posts
 Posted 06/12/2018  3:40 pm  Show Profile   Check Andrew99's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Andrew99 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I found too that when the hobby is saving to make a buy, then saving some more, it becomes more that saving is the hobby, not coin collecting. So I decided to start setting up at shows and becoming a dealer. You really feel you are more part of a community as a dealer and you get discounts on everything you want to buy and put away anyway. It also frees you from trying to complete sets of everything when you just buy coins that appeal to you, put prices on them and try to sell them.
The collection is in your mind. Dispose of your albums and free your mind from the tyranny of holes.
Bedrock of the Community
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United States
10840 Posts
 Posted 06/12/2018  5:15 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add T-BOP to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Many times in my coin collecting years I sort of lost a little enthusiasm . All I needed to resume my passion was a real nice coin found in change or a relative giving me a coin that interest me . You can also try going to a bank and purchase rolls of coins to look through for high grade , old dates , errors and varieties . If coins are in your blood you will always get back into it .
Proud Member of The Black Sheep Squadron !
Bedrock of the Community
United States
18064 Posts
 Posted 06/13/2018  08:40 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add just carl to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Don't get back into coin collecting. That way you'ld be helping me. Remember there are only so many coins of each type out there and if you get back into collecting them, less for me. For each coin collector added to the amount presently out there, one less of some coins I need. So be nice to me and collect things like Beanie Babies or sports cards.
just carl
Pillar of the Community
United States
728 Posts
 Posted 06/13/2018  1:44 pm  Show Profile   Check Collects82's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Collects82 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I think I too get more of a thrill from the hunt, which can be addictive. But buy what you enjoy and although the thrill won't be the same after the buy, you still have something you enjoy waiting every time you open the collection box/folder.
My hoard of '82s is up to 159! 218 BC x 1, 118 BC x 3, 18 BC x 1, 82 x 1, 182 x 1, 282 x 2, 582 x 2, 682 x 1, 782 x 2, 882 x 1, 982 x 3, 1182 x 8, 1282 x 2, 1382 x 1, 1482 x 4, 1582 x 12, 1682 x 12, 1782 x 40, 1882 x 41, 1982 x 21
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United States
72329 Posts
 Posted 06/13/2018  4:35 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jbuck to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Sharing your progress here on CCF might help. I know I get satisfaction from sharing my purchases here and I get even more from seeing what is shared by others.
Pillar of the Community
United States
1359 Posts
 Posted 06/13/2018  6:31 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jpsned to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I would say to crack open a copy of the Red Book and spend time reading about numismatic lore as well as poring over the photos of your favorite coins and their mintages. That might well do the trick!
Valued Member
United States
109 Posts
 Posted 06/13/2018  10:10 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add CrusaderVW to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks for the help guys. I'll give a more detailed post about my collection when I have more time. I think something that made me lose a little enthusiasm is that I went through about a year long dryspell of finding nothing in the spare change (which is what I do for the most part, with an occasional buy here and there). However, I do feel a bit of rekindling by the fact that I recently found a 1909 Wheat cent in the change. It was a truly glorious occasion. I think that posting here on the community is definitely helpful. I need to re-immerse myself in numismatic culture, and I need to start actively sifting through rolls again. I'm currently working on my Wheat cent collection, plus my Confederate currency collection, and I think I'll maybe start an album for coins and currency from the Franco era in Spain. My main interest in collecting is in the historical aspect. I'm not sure that the hunt is my primary focus, but it is quite invigorating.
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