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Purposely Toning Coins  
 

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Pillar of the Community
United States
1374 Posts
 Posted 01/31/2011  1:58 pm Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add Drsandman2 to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
I was in a local coin shop the other day and saw an album of beautifully, exotically toned nickels. They were all proofs from the 80s and 90s and looked to have been coated with something to make them tone a dark blue with some reds.

To be honest, I thought I could see brush strokes on the toning like the coins had been painted with a paintbrush.

The album was selling for $1 a coin. I didn't realize that people tone coins on purpose... and after seeing the nickels I will have to be very skeptical of all toned coins.

Anyone else have similar experiences?
Pillar of the Community
United States
809 Posts
 Posted 01/31/2011  2:05 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Lincolncentguy to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I dont like artificially toned coins...I view them as damaged coins. I have seen sonme naturally toned coins and they can be very beautiful!
Pillar of the Community
United States
784 Posts
 Posted 01/31/2011  3:21 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add spaceace to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Natural toning can be very nice and have great eye appeal. However, even some natural toning can be kind of ugly depending on how dark/splotchy it is and how even it is etc...

Artificial toning often looks too over-the-top and usually ends up looking bad and in my opinion takes away from the eye appeal. It can be interesting for sure, but not something I want to have with my coins.
Valued Member
United States
439 Posts
 Posted 01/31/2011  4:18 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add thecoinczar to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I just love toned coins, artificial and natural toned. It doesn't matter to me. The artificial toned coins can be so vivid and colorful and I find them to be alluring with magnificent eye appeal! Now if I were to buy a toned coin it would be naturally toned, as far as I would know and would only buy from a trusted dealer, but I really appreciate the artificial coins and would maybe consider some in the near future, that is if the price were right.
Pillar of the Community
United States
3591 Posts
 Posted 01/31/2011  9:12 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Maineman750 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Coinczar, it's great to see somebody that knows what they like regardless of what the consensus is..I feel the same way about cleaned coins, if I like the way they look,they go in my book.I haven't seen any AT coins I liked yet,but I keep an open mind.
Pillar of the Community
United States
1374 Posts
 Posted 01/31/2011  9:52 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Drsandman2 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I agree. These nickels really were stunning, especially with 60 of them filling an album. I too admire the natural toning, especially on morgans. I almost hopped on them as soon as I saw them, but then withdrew because my inexperience frightened me. I would rather stick that $60 bucks into my type set.
Valued Member
United States
286 Posts
 Posted 02/01/2011  12:10 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jimineez to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I love toned Morgans, but I stick with NGC or PCGS coins, just because I don't really want a fake even if it is pretty. I like to think of the long history behind the toning & hope that doesn't involve a secretive coin doctor somewhere just last week painting a coin to trick me...Ever seen the guys on eBay that sell fake wildly toned Morgans by the dozens for a nice premium? I personally wish they wouldnt "ruin" a nice white BU Morgan, but I guess the coin doesn't belong to me.
Pillar of the Community
United States
1374 Posts
 Posted 02/01/2011  12:17 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Drsandman2 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
jim - Wow, no I haven't seen those and that saddens me. I totally agree with you about natural toning. Artificially toned coins seems like damage and obvious, like spaceace mentioned. How different is it from dipping it in gold or coloring them like these TV commercials? My 1982 proof set, in original packaging, had the coolest toning around the edges of each coin. I stuck it in my Dansco type set. SCORE.

I suppose that begs the question, does NGC or PCGS slab artificially toned coins? Can they tell?
Pillar of the Community
United States
3591 Posts
 Posted 02/01/2011  05:34 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Maineman750 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Let's think about it for a minute...what constitutes "natural"? If a coin takes a week to tone,a month,a year,20 years ? It is all caused by a chemical reaction to something.You can put a slabbed coin in a sunlit window all summer and speed up the process.Aren't they all really artificially toned in one way or another ? A reaction to sunlight,paper,plastic,humidity,etc...
Pillar of the Community
United States
1251 Posts
 Posted 02/01/2011  09:51 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Doucet to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I'm a sculptor and I "tone" metal all the time. With coins though I'd rather collect natural toned coins.

I don't know why exactly maybe because a naturally toned coin has come along through history and is what it is, undisturbed.

Sort of like I wouldn't want to re-paint someones work of art to try to jazz it up.
Pillar of the Community
United States
3591 Posts
 Posted 02/01/2011  11:07 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Maineman750 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
a naturally toned coin has come along through history and is what it is, undisturbed


If that were true, wouldn't they all look the same for each coin and age ?
Pillar of the Community
United States
784 Posts
 Posted 02/01/2011  1:25 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add spaceace to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Maineman, I don't think they would all look the same because coins of the same age are exposed to different amounts of oils on skin, boxes, containers, sunlight/UV, moisture, etc...
I look at artificial toning as doing something to speed up the process, like purposely applying a chemical or excessively heating a coin or some other blatant act to tone a coin (which sometimes looks nice) but is done to speed up a natural process or alter a natural process. Either way it is a persons preference and opinion as to what they like or dislike about toning
Pillar of the Community
United States
3591 Posts
 Posted 02/01/2011  1:44 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Maineman750 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
spaceace I think you hit it pretty good,it's all about a person's preference.I don't believe there really is such a thing as "natural" toning...and you made that point above..oils,moisture,boxes,paper,plastics,etc are no more natural than any other chemical.To me, "natural" would be as it came from the mint...and we do see examples of coins fifty or a hundred years old that do maintain that state.
Bedrock of the Community
United States
16025 Posts
 Posted 02/01/2011  2:57 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add just carl to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Let's think about it for a minute...what constitutes "natural"? If a coin takes a week to tone,a month,a year,20 years ? It is all caused by a chemical reaction to something.You can put a slabbed coin in a sunlit window all summer and speed up the process.Aren't they all really artificially toned in one way or another ? A reaction to sunlight,paper,plastic,humidity,etc...

Sort of what I've been saying for a long time. Suppose you drop a coin in a place and it sits there for years. You find it and it is all toned so now that is NT. If you purposely put it there to tone, now that is AT? You put coins on a kitchen window and let them there for years and they tone. Is that AT? If you put them there and just forgot them and they tone, now that is NT? My way of thinking is it is really difficult to tell if AT or NT in many instances.
I'll stick to non toned coins to play safe.
just carl
Valued Member
United States
286 Posts
 Posted 02/01/2011  3:38 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jimineez to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I guess where I am drawing a line is: toning because it is exposed to air or paper roll/envelope or something for years; versus painting it with a chemical or baking it or blowtorching it in some way like this one I found in a 20 second search on eBay just now:



This guy has dozens of coins that all look like this, he just paints some gunk on there and sells them right away.

If you study toning, there is a natural progression of the rainbow colors as the toning get microscopically thinker from one side to the other. When you paint a coin like this you get wild variations of color that are usually easily spotted.
NGC and PCGS will not slab an artificial toned coin. ANACS will, with a label of artificial toning. Can they always tell? I doubt it, but they would never slab 99% of the crap on eBay.

A couple more for your pleasure(not):
Think this one is real ?


Well that same seller also has this 2004 quarter (and a lot of other state quarters) that is wildly toned too....Just how do you think that happened? Lastly, if any of these rainbow toned morgans were real, they could submit to NGC & they would be worth over $100 on average, instead of $39.95-$49.95 like they all sell for (always raw).
Valued Member
United States
286 Posts
 Posted 02/01/2011  3:41 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jimineez to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
BTW Maineman,
I have heard that an incredible number of the "blast white" morgans that are out there have been lightly dipped to get rid of a bit of natural toning that took place over the years, you know the slight goldish tint that is seen sometimes. TPG's will still slab a properly dipped coin I'm told, but I guess they are not really "natural" either. I agree that the definition gets fuzzy sometimes...
Edited by jimineez
02/01/2011 3:43 pm
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