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Help! Polishing lines or scratches? (1884-O Morgan Dollar)

 
 
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New Member
United States
26 Posts
 Posted 11/07/2018  3:45 pm Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add Shenandoah1 to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
*** Edited by Staff to Add Year / Mintmark / Denomination to Title. Titles are Important! ***

I'm leaning in one direction but would appreciate a few more opinions from those more knowledgeable on the subject than I. The coin is an 1884 O Morgan dollar DMPL or PL. I can't tell if the lines are incuse or raised, though most appear to either stop at or go "under" the devices. At the same time, most polishing lines I've seen are clearly raised, while these may be but aren't obvious. I hope these photos suffice. Thank you.



Bedrock of the Community
United States
14131 Posts
 Posted 11/07/2018  3:48 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add IndianGoldEagle to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
These look more like hairline scratches to me.
Valued Member
United States
276 Posts
 Posted 11/07/2018  7:36 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add atchisonbj to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
The best way to tell the difference from die polish lines verses scratches or hairlines is that die polish lines are straight and parallel. Scratches or hairlines will take on the nature of hair.
New Member
United States
26 Posts
 Posted 11/07/2018  10:19 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Shenandoah1 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks to both IndianGoldEagle and Atchisonbj for your replies -- I was pretty confident they were hairlines but the reverse is littered with them and mostly in straight lines that go "under" the devices, so I thought maybe I missed something.

Atchison, thanks for the tip, but I could have sworn I've seen hair-like die polish lines on non-details graded coins. Maybe those fall into the "scribble" VAM category. What do you think of this one (see link below)? Lines appear to be raised -- especially clear on lines above and to the right of the "I" -- but the responses seem to be somewhat split. Thanks again. *** Edited by Staff - Please post images here. ***
Pillar of the Community
United States
2146 Posts
 Posted 11/08/2018  12:49 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Slider23 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Here are a couple other tips on how to spot hairlines vs die polish on a PL or DMPL. When I look at your photos, it appears that both hairlines and die polish may be on the coin. On a PL coin a simple wipe can put hairlines on the coin. To check the PL coin for hairlines tilt the coin back and forth under light and the hairlines will often change directions when tilting the coin.

Die polish lines on a Morgan PL coin are created at the mint by polishing the die fields. The raised details on the coin do not get touched with the die polishing. There are lines on your coin around the tip of the arrows. A die polish line should stop on one side of the arrow tip and continue on the same straight path on the other side of the arrow tip.

I own a PCGS PL with a CAC sticker that has hairlines form a soft wipe and lots of die polish lines.
New Member
United States
26 Posts
 Posted 11/08/2018  11:42 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Shenandoah1 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Excellent point, Slider, thank you. It actually crossed my mind that there might be both hairlines and polishing lines on this coin. As I mentioned in my initial post, there was evidence of both so you may well be right. You can't see any of the lines in hand -- or even with a loupe except at exactly the right angle and in direct light -- but when I bought the coin on ebay, to the seller's credit, the photos clearly showed that the reverse was awash in lines -- nearly 3/4 of that side. For a DMPL/PL with a beautiful cameo, the price was right to take a chance on. Thanks again.
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