Hello Fellow SLQ Lovers!
I've read every forum I can find on date identification of Standing Liberty quarters
and from what I've gathered I can identify numerous unreadable date coins just from deductive reasoning. Yesterday I was able to identify the following out of my junk SLQ collection:
- (3) 1917-P Type I
- (1) 1917-S Type II
- (1) 1917-D Type II
- (2) 1920-P
- (19) Type II P Either 1917, 1918, 1919, 1921, 1923, or 1924
(minimum "good" book value of $15)
- (1) Type II D Either 1917, 1918, 1919, or 1924
(minimum "good" book value of $40)
- (5) Type II S Either 1917, 1918, 1918/17, 1919, 1923, 1924
(minimum "good" book value of $17)
So I have 25 coins that if I were able to determine just the last digit I could claim a $15 to a $1,500 coin.
There is definitely a benefit to knowing this one digit if a method existed. I've read about liquids called Silv-A-Date and even Silver Date-Back but can't find anyplace that sells them. I even read how someone used vinegar and received poor results. I only want to reveal one digit so I don't need a dip, I need a drop. Preferably something that will stick to the coin until you remove it. Maybe even a small sticker with the chemical on it.
Anyway, now for my method of deduction (I think I've been watching too much Sherlock on Masterpiece):
Type I Coins
1. If reverse has no stars under the eagle it is a Type I 1916 or 1917 P, D, or S. Easy.
2. If obverse has D or S you have a 1917 D or S. Again, easy.
3. If obverse has no mint mark (and based on wear samples I've seen, the mint mark would very likely be visible) check this photo done by someone who did a very good job (I'd like to give them credit but I don't know who they are) and you either have a 1917-P or 1916-P (celebrate and have it slabbed by someone besides NGC because I'm told they won't slab them with no date): http://i788.photobucket.com/albums/...exp-horz.jpg
Therefore ALL Type I coins can be identified assuming they are not worn beyond collectible (and I haven't found one yet not collectible).
Type II Coins (three stars below eagle on obverse)
1. Look at the star left of where the mint mark would normally reside. If it is visible but the date is missing, you have a pre-1925 SLQ. If it has no star and no date it is most likely a post 1924 coin or a pre-1925 in very worn condition and probably not worth more than bullion, but that's not in the scope of this post.
2. If it is a pre-1925 SLQ, look for any piece of the date but most likely you'll only see the last digit or no digit at all if you are even referencing this guide. The two that I've seen come up is the "7" and the "0" which positively identifies the coin as a Type II 1917 or 1920 (again, happy time).
3. If you can't make out any digits but you can see that star clearly and the two edges of the pedestal, it is not a 1920. I think the "0" would show for the same wear that a 7, 8, 9, 3, or 4 would disappear.
4. If you have a mint-mark (which would be clear if you can see that star), you can further deduce that in the case of a "D" with no "0" you have a 1917, 1918, 1919 or 1924 and it's minimum grade would probably be good and a $40 price tag. A "S" with no "0" indicates a 1917, 1918, 1918/17, 1919, 1923 or 1924 and a $15 price tag.
So if you can see the edges of the pedestal clearly you can also positively identify all Type II 1917-PDS and 1920-PDS.
Another obvious deduction from all this is, if you cannot see the star but you can see enough of the last digit of the date, you can now positively identify any coin post-1924. That includes the very expensive 1927-S.
Take a look at your scrap SLQs again and get them slabbed if they can be identified and they are worth the money. Once slabbed they are liquid for more than just bullion.
Now, anyone have an idea of how to bring out that last digit on those pre-1925 Type IIs with minimal damage to the coin? I'd like to turn my (25) pre-1925 from mysteries to money.
Thanks for the time and I hope this helps,