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White Specs Or Flakes On Early American Copper Large Cents And Half Cents

 
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 Posted 02/28/2021  09:31 am Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add FlyingEagle to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
I have seen white specs or flakes on early american coppers. Does anyone know the cause? Does it have an impact on coin grade or value?
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 Posted 02/28/2021  10:08 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Coinfrog to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Can you show us any examples?



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 Posted 02/28/2021  10:42 am  Show Profile   Check Lancek's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Lancek to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Copper is a very reactive metal. At least compared to gold or silver. Could be lots of things. As far as effect on grade and value, eye appeal is very important to most buyers. Spots certainly aren't going to add any value. As far as detracting, are they subtle, or very pronounced. Limited to the fields, or all over the design?

Effect on grade is probably less of an issue. As I've seen very ugly spotted coins still grade high. Might knock it down a point or two if really bad, but still superficial. But a high grade doesn't really matter if nobody wants to buy it.

If the spots are more than superficial. Have damaged the surface under where they are, they yeah, probably a details coin, and a huge effect on grade and value.

If it's a high value coin, you could run it through one of the TPGs conservation services. Assuming the spots are superficial. But copper is kind of a crap shoot with that process. Can easily make the coin look worse.
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 Posted 02/28/2021  10:43 am  Show Profile   Check chafemasterj's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add chafemasterj to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I think someone recently posted a question about the same thing only it was encapsulated in a PCGS holder on the reverse. I don't think there was a definitive answer but could be wrong.

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Edited by chafemasterj
02/28/2021 10:46 am
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 Posted 02/28/2021  11:16 am  Show Profile   Check westcoin's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add westcoin to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I've seen this on copper coins as well, sometimes I think it's usually some sort of foreign substance or even lint that adheres to oily copper. I've run into it on some of my Two Cent coins and have always been able to remove it through acetone soaking and a mix of air blowing. Now it could also be from impurities in the metal composition itself and is showing up and reacting or oxidizing differently than the surrounding metal.

Photos would help us to better understand the issue I'm sure.
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 Posted 02/28/2021  11:45 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add T-BOP to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
To CCF , were those coins holdered in TPG slabs or 2x2 cardboard holders ?
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 Posted 02/28/2021  3:46 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Zurie to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I suspect it's specks of cardboard dust sticking to the coin, more visible on a dark-surfaced coin.
Edited by Zurie
02/28/2021 3:47 pm
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 Posted 03/01/2021  12:12 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Conder101 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Owner had a dandruff problem?
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 Posted 03/01/2021  10:00 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add hfjacinto to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I purchased a 1/2 cent with white flakes. It was slabbed in an NGC holder and not details. I contacted NGC and they told me to submit it for an " appearance review", which I did.

I would have generally returned the coin as I got it on eBay, but the price was really good, it was a coin I needed and the seller was down on his luck.

So I took a chance. I'll let you know what NGC says, worst that happens is I'm out shipping and a $10 fee. Best case it gets conserved for free and I get it back in better shape than I purchased it, as to what the white stuff, really looked like the polish used to clean metal objects.
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 Posted 03/01/2021  11:07 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add ExoGuy to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
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Popcorn ceilings can yield that white flake effect ....

Seriously though, I've found the "Coin Care" product to be great for neutralizing and conserving the old coppers, in particular. All manner of residue tends to collect over time; especially so, within the recessed regions of counterstamped coins. IMHO, the fewer contaminants residing on coin surfaces, the better.
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