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1875 Seated Liberty Half Dollar...is It Real?

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Pillar of the Community
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 Posted 06/09/2019  08:46 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add llewellin to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Good point - take the two coins you have and flip them in the air. Is the ringing sound different between the two of them?
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 Posted 06/09/2019  11:09 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Heymikep to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
The coin is not a fake and It looks like a weak strike and why would anyone fake such a common coin. It had the 3rd highest mintage for the series.

Quote:
Coin on the right is 13% thicker.

That could be due to wear, the comparison is from and AG coin to a VF coin and depending on where you are measuring from. The thickness looks good to me and a micrometer would confirm.

Bedrock of the Community
Australia
16999 Posts
 Posted 06/09/2019  7:39 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add sel_69l to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I used the rim pictures to measure them.
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 Posted 06/09/2019  7:45 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jimbucks to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
why would anyone fake such a common coin

Why would Henning fake a common nickel?
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 Posted 06/09/2019  8:06 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add fortcollins to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
The coin is not a fake and It looks like a weak strike and why would anyone fake such a common coin. It had the 3rd highest mintage for the series.


There are known counterfeits of most dates of the Seated Half series, including 1875. Two known cast contemporary counterfeits exist, and are collected, 1875-101 and 1875-102. A long, but dated, list of then-known counterfeited dates appears in Wiley & Bugert's Complete Guide, at page 46, including 1875. More dates can be added today.

The OP's coin has almost too-perfect denticles, reeding, and fields, combined with an odd weakness in the motto and surprising detail in other areas. This clearly isn't a cast counterfeit. The concern is a possible Chinese spark erosion die-struck counterfeit, with reeding added post-strike by a Castaing-type machine. I haven't seen a Chinese counterfeit of 1875 yet, but a die struck 1872-S counterfeit was good enough to slip through the big TPGs.

Like others who have posted upthread, I'm skeptical of the OP's coin because of the appearance.
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 Posted 06/09/2019  10:21 pm  Show Profile   Check 52Raymo's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add 52Raymo to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Oh the Chinese make em. I couldn't match one up with this one though and I looked at a few different ones.
Oregon coin geek.....*** GO BEAVS ! ! ! ***
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 Posted 06/09/2019  11:30 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add fortcollins to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
@52Raymo, I'm stuck at

I saw a slabbed 1872-S counterfeit. It sent a shiver up my spine, because it was much better than the usual spark-erosion die struck coins. It should have been caught, since they muled two different coins, but it sure was good.

We're on Chinese counterfeit 3.0 now, and it's a whole new ballgame. Frankly, I miss the good old days of Chinese counterfeit 1.0, with the clumsy cast replicas.

I just can't tell on this coin. The photos aren't clear enough. The reeding looks off, but is cambered. The number of reeds is vital to figuring this coin out. I have yet to see any Chinese counterfeit with correct reeding.
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 Posted 06/10/2019  12:12 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add chirrrs to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I'll be getting new photos up tomorrow. Had a storm blow through and destroy a fence, so didn't have time today.

So far regarding this coin, here's where I am at:

(1) Passes mass test
(2) Dimensions seem correct
(3) Passes ping test
(4) I think it passes the Eddy Current slide test *

* I made a slide out of some rare earth magnets, and ran the following tests:
(a) Tested a SLQ, silver Washington, and clad Washington
(b) Tested a fake Morgan and a real Morgan
(c) Tested a 64 JFK and a clad JFK
(d) Finally, tested a known real 1853 half and this 1875 half

I did all these various tests to try and make sure I had some baseline success before worrying about the half dollar. After establishing that I could tell the difference between known silver and otherwise, I moved on to the SL. The 1875 responded identical to 1853, and the ping tests were identical on those two.

As mentioned before, I'm nowhere near an expert on counterfeits. If this is a fake, it seems like an exceptional one as it seems to pass every single test I can think of. I considered doing a specific gravity test, but I'm not sure how effective that would be if it turned out alloy proportioning was involved.

It does look off though. The only thing that makes sense to me is if it is a counterfeit done on a legit 90% silver half. At that point, it seems absurd to do though. If we were looking at high quality fake CC Morgans, then sure.

I have another SL half in better condition that I'll use to retake the rim comparison photos with. I don't have a ton of them, so most of the ones I own are AG-F. Except the three in my 7070. So I guess I'll bust out one of those for the sake of comparison!

EDIT:

I think regardless of whatever consensus I get here, I might just spend the $10 to have ANACS authenticate it. It might be quite educational to see what they have to say. If it is indeed a fake, but ANACS says it's real, it would be good to know what level of quality current counterfeits are at.

For what it's worth, I bought this online from someone who doesn't usually sell coins, but it was in with a bunch of other coins that are absolutely real, and were worth what I paid for the whole lot even if this one was fake. So it's not one of those fake Morgans listed at $65-200 nor was it one of those listings where it was being sold at or below melt. I'll also try and get a little more info from the seller as to where they got it from.

Edited by chirrrs
06/10/2019 12:17 am
Bedrock of the Community
Australia
16999 Posts
 Posted 06/10/2019  02:03 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add sel_69l to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
If I was going to fake a seated Lib half, I would be more tempted to choose some other date / mm.

Nevertheless I am well aware that more common dates/ mm's have been faked.

From what has been reported in testing so far, the only thing that is obviously odd, is that it looks odd.

Despite the fact that sometimes (fortunately only vary rarely), a TPGrader can make a mistake regarding authenticity, it may be well worth submitting this particular coin.

In my experience, no single test ever proves authenticity on a doubtful coin, but it works out that some tests are, in particular cases, highly important.
It is the total weight of evidence that can prove beyond reasonable doubt. (You must forgive me, I have just spent three weeks on a jury.)
Edited by sel_69l
06/10/2019 05:48 am
Pillar of the Community
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 Posted 06/10/2019  09:51 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add llewellin to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I'm sticking with my original inclination it's real. Ping test and eddy current are pretty conclusive it's 90% silver. Looks fine to me, just that the pics are a little out of focus.
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 Posted 06/10/2019  6:42 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Heymikep to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Have you counted the reeds? I agree with Fortcollins that the edge reeds will confirm. I have seen the 1872 S and agree that it is extraordinarily good fake but all others that I have seen can be found fake by the date. The can never seem to get the date correct (except the 1872 S).
New Member
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 Posted 12/23/2019  10:24 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add chirrrs to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
UPDATE: I sent this and about a dozen other coins off to get graded. Just got the notification that the grading is finished and it is currently in shipping.

This coin came back as an 1875 Seated Liberty half dollar (VF35 - Altered Surfaces). I can't say that I'm at all surprised by that as the coin definitely has a weird look to it. The only guess I have that makes any sense is that something was covering a majority of the back and someone tooled it in some way to remove the junk on the surface of the coin. An abrasive cleaning and tooling of just the high points would cause an uneven wear pattern like this, so that's my guess.

I wish I could find out more details, but it sure looks like the obverse was untouched. I wonder if the coin was set in something so that some type of glue or bonding agent was applied to the back so the coin could be in some kind of mount. If it was for a long period of time, getting that off the reverse would indeed require chemicals or tooling, and pretty much just that top layer of the reverse of the coin would have to be removed at the high points. For what I paid, I'm happy with it!
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 Posted 12/24/2019  08:20 am  Show Profile   Check edweather's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add edweather to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
All in all, sounds like a decent result. Thanks for the update.
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Australia
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 Posted 12/25/2019  04:29 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add sel_69l to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
The TPGrader has an advantage that we don't:
- the opportunity to closely examine it in hand.

Combine that sort of observation with many years of experience, and one can lend much weight to this sort of evidence.
A so called 'expert witness'.
Pillar of the Community
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7690 Posts
 Posted 12/25/2019  7:59 pm  Show Profile   Check 52Raymo's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add 52Raymo to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Be sure and post a pic of the slab when you get it.
Oregon coin geek.....*** GO BEAVS ! ! ! ***
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