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Some Help For A Beginner Please

 
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Author Previous TopicReplies: 13 / Views: 411Next Topic  
New Member
United Kingdom
2 Posts
 Posted 06/24/2021  06:56 am Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add Artisan to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
My name is Greg and I am retired and live in the South West of England. I am a new member of the forum and as a complete beginner at collecting coins I would be grateful for advice and answers to some questions.

The coins I am most interested in would be from the Roman period and up to the Victorian era. I would like buy and sell online as a hobby and would like to know the best way to get started on a budget?

I already have a selection of various coins that I have inherited over the years and would like to sell them so I can purchase more coins. My problem is that most of the coins I need to identify. Can anyone tell me what is the best way to search and identify these coins using the internet?

What is the best way to buy coins online? Would eBay be worth a look or can someone recommend other online auctions or online sellers?

Finally, could anybody suggest an online coin inventory software I could use to keep track of my collection?

Thanks in anticipation.

Best regards,
Greg
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Australia
1074 Posts
 Posted 06/24/2021  07:46 am  Show Profile   Check ryurazu's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add ryurazu to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Don't do this if you want to get rich quick, there are few around but most dealers aren't rich at the end of the day, no wonder some of them can be so grumpy hahaha.

That being said now depends on your budget as to what you get for this hobby. If your on a shoestring budget and this is something your super passionate about I'll go to your local library (check out a few reference book) you actually don't want to be look at the price of thing just yet, as many books are either out off date or overpriced items, what you should try to understand is rarity (mintages) and why something is so vauble and collectable amount your fellow collector's. Oh you can also try this site excellent collect of free online ebooks. Then try to understand the nuances of eye appeal of a coin it very difficult especially if you want to complete sets and types varieties. So for purchasing bulk I go with pennies or Romans but that's hard work sort through lots however if your passionate about it, it's fun. Note as you start going up the value chain fakes become more common.

I don't use any catalog software at the moment but I believe there are a few packages around that are one cost software with some updates. No recommendations here, maybe some form the Great Britain section might be able to help you here.
Bedrock of the Community
Australia
18734 Posts
 Posted 06/24/2021  07:55 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add sel_69l to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Artisan: to the CCF!
Despite the fact that the CCF is American based, you will find lots of friends who are avid collectors of British Coins. I am one of them.
There are active specialist sub forums on British and ancient coins, here in the CCF.

I don't use a software package for keeping track of my collection. (Old fashioned, I guess! )
All of my coins are in 2x2's and all detailed information relating to the coin is written on the 2x2. That includes a full description of the coin (if ancient) the date with price paid, and provenance. The obvious advantage: If the collection requires re arranging, all of the information relating to the coin moves with it. No need to also update the management data.

Read the CCF rules for buying and selling, if that is your intention to do so within the CCF.
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United States
20067 Posts
 Posted 06/24/2021  08:21 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Spence to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
@art, first welcome to CCF. Second, as your questions pertain mainly to ancient and medieval coins, I'm going to move your thread there. I recommend looking around on that sub-forum, especially at the sticky threads relating to safe and unsafe sellers. There are lots of useful prior threads to help you educate yourself as well.
"If you climb a good tree, you get a push."
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"The danger we all now face is distinguishing between what is authentic and what is performed."
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 Posted 06/24/2021  09:00 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Coinfrog to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply


to the CCF!
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United States
995 Posts
 Posted 06/24/2021  10:42 am  Show Profile   Check louisvillekyshop's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add louisvillekyshop to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Greg;

We like if you post photos of a just a single coin or few at a time but not a large lot. Then we can help you one by one and let you know how we identify that particular coin. So there is no one answer especially if the coins span through the Victorian age from ancient. There are many sources to identify coins, and different things for look for in different coin series that are specific to that coin series. So we look forward to seeing some of your coins.

Now buying coins online, we can get to that later but a person should be an "expert in a coin series" before they buy in my opinion which is not that hard if you keep it really focused. Look up past sales for a particular coin then try buying one at a price you can make money at with 30% going to fees of the sale price. It is best you try just identifying your current inherited coins first and selling those in my opinion.

Finally, I would not buy any inventory software yet. You can do just fine with Excel and a spreadsheet application plus also if you sell EBay UK for example, they track your business and give you spreadsheets of data so depending on the platform you may not need software. Of course that part is far ahead of just the beginning steps of asking about a few coins you post in photos here and as I said we look forward to seeing those. Take care:
New Member
United Kingdom
2 Posts
 Posted 06/24/2021  11:14 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Artisan to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Hello to everyone who has kindly sent me a reply to my posting.

Thank you all for your replies and the advice. I will carefully read all that you have written and inwardly digest in my quest to collect coins.

My aim in collecting coins is not for monetary value but the social history connected to coins. Looking at a coin and letting the imagination loose thinking. Who owned the coin? Who were they? When and where was the coin used for payment? To me it is fascinating to hold a coin and think that the coin many years ago had been held by someone else. What was their story?

The only reason I mention that I wanted to buy and sell was that hopefully I could make a small profit which I could use to buy other coins with possible social historic value or a known provenance.

Thanks again.

Best regards,
Greg
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United States
3450 Posts
 Posted 06/24/2021  1:11 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add keith12 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
My aim in collecting coins is not for monetary value but the social history connected to coins. Looking at a coin and letting the imagination loose thinking. Who owned the coin? Who were they? When and where was the coin used for payment? To me it is fascinating to hold a coin and think that the coin many years ago had been held by someone else. What was their story?

I could not agree more
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 Posted 06/24/2021  1:14 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add tdziemia to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
What you are describing is similar to what I started doing about 10 years ago: selling on eBay the coins I had collected in my youth, to generate some extra cash for new themes in my collecting. A few years later my collecting lust outstripped the funds generated, but I felt pretty virtuous while that first phase lasted .

So, yes! That makes a lot of sense.

To do your selling, you can use eBay. After getting help here on what your coins are, you can do research on eBay on reasonable selling prices to aim for.

You will also find we have a lot of collectors here who collect for similar reasons to yours. For example, we have some coillectors with "One From Each Century" collections.
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995 Posts
 Posted 06/24/2021  1:18 pm  Show Profile   Check louisvillekyshop's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add louisvillekyshop to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Greg;

You state you mention buying and selling coins so that you can make a small profit so that you can buy yourself some coins of historical significance. Well being in England you are quite lucky then. Below is the current auction of large lots from Roma Numismatics. Find one that has a historical coin you want to own and buy it. Then sell the ones from the lot you don't want and you will easily achieve your goal. If I can achieve that all the way to the USA from Roma so the extra fees you don't have you certainly can as well with home field advantage! Want a silver drachm of Alexander the Great? They have three lots of 10 each up right now. Almost any major emperor in groups mixed of 10 coins each all large. Buy the one with the emperor you want and as I said sell the rest. Easy way to collect if you have enough for the initial purchase and can wait for payments to return to you.

https://www.romanumismatics.com/e-s...view=bidders
Valued Member
United States
376 Posts
 Posted 06/24/2021  1:35 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add fplagge to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
As for researching the coins which you now have, I recommend joining Numista.com.
It is what I used when I started out and it has very large database of world coinage.
It will give you lots of information on your coins. Do not, however, put a lot of faith into their coin pricing/values - it may give you a ballpark figure but they are not all that reliable.
Also, Numista will track all of your coins for you both on-line AND it will let you make a spreadsheet printout of your data in your choice of formatting.
Best of all, Numista is totally free.


Pillar of the Community
United Kingdom
8916 Posts
 Posted 06/24/2021  2:04 pm  Show Profile   Check NumisRob's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add NumisRob to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Hi Greg and from a fellow British collector!

I agree with all the above comments.

Personally, I use an Excel worksheet to list my collection. I often check Numista to identify foreign coins but I haven't used it to list my collection.

I'd recommend Dei Gratia Coins if you want to build up a collection of different British ones - they send out monthly sales lists and you are invited to 'bid' for the coins.
https://www.dgcoins.co.uk/
I do buy coins sometimes on eBay - I check the seller's feedback and see what other coins they have sold before bidding!


Edited by NumisRob
06/24/2021 2:12 pm
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 Posted 06/24/2021  6:04 pm  Show Profile   Check echizento's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add echizento to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
to the community

We have several members that are well established sellers of ancient coins, I'm sure they will chime in and confirm that it's a difficult business to make money at.

When I started out many years ago I had the same idea, I soon realized that I was keeping more coins for my collection than selling. So I soon gave up and the idea of being a seller.

As a new collector I would recommend you first read through the section here titled: Books, Downloads, and Websites, the information there will help you learn and what you are collecting and how to identify good from fake coins.

Before you start buying learn as much as you can, this will save you from wasting your money on junk.

New Member
United Kingdom
40 Posts
 Posted 06/24/2021  8:44 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add JohnConduitt to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I have similar collecting interests - you will find the Roman period to Victoria covers a vast number of coins, so you might want to pick a few areas you're interested in (Roman London mint; Northumbrian stycas; the Plantagenets; English Civil War; George III emergency issues and tokens).

As mentioned, Numista is good for identification, especially modern coins.

For Roman coins, you want something like Wildwinds http://www.wildwinds.com/coins/ric/i.html or Ocre http://numismatics.org/ocre/identify

If you're looking at medieval coins, you need to get your eye in. This is a good site for identification, and for demonstrating how difficult identification is https://www.rodblunt.com/short-cross-pennies

I think the main problem with selling is that you have to buy very well to make a worthwhile profit. As an example:

You win a Constantine I follis at auction for 50. Add 20% auction fee, and 10 shipping, and that's 70. If you buy at an overseas auction, you might get hit for customs and VAT, which will add at least 12 (the customs handling fee) plus 5% VAT. So in total you've paid nearly 90.

You sell it on eBay. They want 12.8% commission + 0.30 payment fee, and if you sell it to an overseas buyer, another 2% or so. Then there's your postage cost, which second class to the UK is 2.06 (if you can keep it thinner than 0.5cm). And packaging, another 0.50 (although you can re-use the packaging you received it in if you keep it).

With all that, you might need to sell it for 120 to get your 90 back. If the buyer is not in the UK (and you use eBay's Global Selling Program), they have to pay international postage (could be as much as 20) and tax on top.

So you need to find a buyer that will pay 140 for a coin that hammered for 50 and for which you paid 90. Not easy. And that's for zero profit. You might be holding it a while.

And bear in mind, you won't sell on eBay for the same prices you pay on Roma, since Roma is a highly-respected auction house where you can trust the authenticity of the coins, while eBay is a counterfeiters paradise. For that reason, I wouldn't buy anything on eBay unless you find out the seller is trustworthy or you know what you are looking at, but buying from Roma (or DNW, Spink, CNG) comes at a premium. There are good dealers too for British coins (Silbury Coins, Chris Rudd, Halls Hammered Coins) but of course they are trying to make a profit like you, and need to live off it.

Buying a lot at auction might help (as it spreads the delivery cost over more coins) but you have to know how much each coin might sell for, or you could end up with a load of difficult-to-sell coins (which ties up your cash) and still not make the coin you wanted any cheaper. Worse, it might end up costing you more.

To do any of the above, you need experience, which takes a while. Months? Years? Specialising would help a lot, so you can spot fakes and estimate values quickly. I could probably spot a fake Roman London mint follis or a fake Saxon hammered penny, but show me anything Greek and I would have no idea whatsoever (unless it was terrible).

You might not even want to sell the coins you inherited until you know the issue and what makes for a valuable coin. You could lose good profit in haste.

Still, if you're collecting for the fun of it, mindful that your 'investment can go down as well as up', you will have a lot of fun and soon become an expert. If you don't spend more than you can afford to lose, you can't go wrong. And you will learn a lot of history.
Edited by JohnConduitt
06/24/2021 8:55 pm
  Previous TopicReplies: 13 / Views: 411Next Topic  
 
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