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Please Explain This System Of Identification & Coding.......

 
 
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New Member
United States
47 Posts
 Posted 09/21/2019  10:26 am Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add Webs to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
I am just getting back into coin collecting after almost completely being dormant for 40 years. There are now so many more double dies and other error/variety coins than I ever saw before. And along with that are the designations for those coins in PCGS. Let me give you one example, and then perhaps you can explain this to me.

I am getting complete lists of each denomination in Excel. Then I am creating binders with 30 2x2 slots per page. I am putting most coins in cardboard/mylar 2x2's and inserting them in the sheets. I am mapping out each sheet so that I have open slots for the ones I don't have. I am including open slots for many of these error coins as well. Once in a slot, I do not want to have to remove a coin unless it is to be replaced with a higher-quality coin, and I never want to have to shift everything to insert a coin that should have been on my list. To do that, I need an accurate list.

Let's take the 1984 Lincoln cent, no MM. Skip the regular strike, no errors. I find the following:

1984 DDO FS-102 (FS-038) and
1984 Doubled Die Obverse

When I look at the pictures in PCGS, I can see doubling in several places, especially on the 4 for the first one. But the second one appears to be limited to doubling on the beard and ear (arrows pointing to those in their pictures). So, first.....are there actually two completely different errors here?

Secondly, I can deduce that DDO is Double Die Obverse. But I have no idea what either FS-102 or FS-038 refer to. I did a search and found FS-102 also referenced a number of different years, so I have to assume there is some list of standard errors, and perhaps the second FS number is a unique identifier for this specific coin within the umbrella of the error code (first number)? Am I anywhere near correct?

Webs
Pillar of the Community
United States
2370 Posts
 Posted 09/21/2019  10:47 am  Show Profile   Check Tanman2001's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Tanman2001 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
FS refers to the Cherrypickers Guide to Rare Die Varieties written by Bill Fivaz and JT Stanton. It's the listing number in the book. The FS-102 is in the newer books and FS-038 is in the older books, they changed the numbering system to simplify it some years ago.

Also PCGS has changed the way they labeled varieties in the past. At one point they labeled all DDOs simply "Doubled Die Obverse," but for major varieties now they specify which FS number it is.

The new system works like this: FS-1XX is for doubled die obverses. FS-101 is for the first one of the year, FS-102 for the second, and so on. First number is for the type of variety, last two is the # for the year.
Edited by Tanman2001
09/21/2019 10:48 am
Bedrock of the Community
United States
18574 Posts
 Posted 09/21/2019  10:51 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add just carl to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
For one thing I suggest you purchase a copy of the Red Book by Whitman Publishing. As a start there are numerous explanations in that book about errors. Secondly I suggest you not getting involved in error coins unless you want to become an error collector. Just to many errors out there and some so minor, not worth the electron microscope required to see them. Just spend time with collecting a series such as Lincoln Cents or Jefferson nickels and ignor for now all this error stuff. It could drive you nuts trying to keep up with it all.
just carl
New Member
United States
47 Posts
 Posted 09/21/2019  10:56 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Webs to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
OK.....So I get the FS-102....second Double Die variety in 1984 (I found FS-101 for the 1982-D DDO).

Still unsure about the separate lines below the FS-102 line. They say Double Die Obverse (I understand the separate lines for those for coloring of RD, RB and BN). Are they simply spelling out what is in the FS-102 line?
New Member
United States
47 Posts
 Posted 09/21/2019  11:03 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Webs to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Yeah...I used to buy the Red Book every year. I have always been interested in collecting error coins. The two I am most interested in getting are now pretty much down to having to buy them (Lincolns.....1922 no mint mark and 1955 Double Die). But for me, the fun is in the hunt. I am already narrowing down which microscope to get. But I agree in the sense that some errors are too minor to bother with. I have a good collection of Candaina coins, and the volume of collector-found errors is staggering. I am just trying to find the ones listed by "Coins and Canada" for Canadian and PCGS for US at the moment.
Bedrock of the Community
United States
17536 Posts
 Posted 09/21/2019  7:39 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add moxking to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
You are approaching you goal with excellent research and as methodically as one might attempt.

New super minor errors and varieties are discovered constantly.

I would pick out those with EYE VISIBLE merit and forget those so tiny that the microscope is necessary.

When you are hunting deer and you keep shooting rabbits when you finally see the deer you are too loaded down with rabbits to care.
New Member
United States
47 Posts
 Posted 09/22/2019  02:19 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Webs to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
MK.....I am definitely NOT looking for super minor errors. As you alluded to, you take enough rabbit trails, you lose sight of the pah you started on.

As for the microscope, really, truly, I want it for verification. I would use it once I "think" I have visibly found a known error. I don;t have enough trust in my eyes to doubt the possibility of my eyes playing tricks on me.
Pillar of the Community
United States
2789 Posts
 Posted 09/22/2019  03:52 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add mdpmedia to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
...collecting a series such as Lincoln Cents or Jefferson nickels and ignor for now all this error stuff


I wish I would have limited by collection to only a couple of series like Morgans and IHCs. I could have saved a lot of time and money from categorizing and the worst part of coin collecting: selling the stuff.
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