Coin Collecting 101

Buying eBay Coins? Here Are 3 Descriptions To Look For When Buying Coins On eBay

eBay Coins

If you're shopping for coins on eBay, you've probably noticed some interesting descriptions on many of the coin listings. Of course, there are words and phrases like: "Very Good" and "Uncirculated" referring to coin grades "Proof" or "Bullion" referring to the coin's method of manufacture "Cleaned" referring to whether the coin has been doctored in any way to alter the finish There are many other descriptions, too. But there are 3 descriptive words I'm always very cautious … [Read more...]

What Are Impaired Proof Coins? When Bad Things Happen To Good Proof Coins

impaired-proof-coins

I like collecting proof coins because they're usually exquisite, collector-quality examples of the coins that I find in my pocket change. But what about proof coins that are less than perfect? These are called impaired proof coins. According to the Professional Coin Grading Service, an impaired proof is "a proof coin that grades less than PR-60; a circulated proof." Unfortunately, not every proof coin is kept in the best condition. Many are mishandled. Sometimes they’re even spent … [Read more...]

Coin Grading & Registry Sets: What You Need To Know About These High-Grade Coin Collections

coin-grading

If you own any coins that have been certified by major coin grading firms, then you could create an elite type of coin collection called a registry set. What is a coin registry set and why are more coin collectors building them? For many coin collectors years ago, it used to be good enough to simply have an uncirculated or mint state specimen of a coin -- that is, a coin that has never been in pocket change or used in any transactions. … [Read more...]

Cleaned Coins: How To Tell If A Coin Has Been Cleaned & Why It Matters

cleaned coins

I talk a lot about cleaned coins versus uncleaned coins here at The Fun Times Guide to Coins. You may be wondering what the big fuss is about cleaning coins and perhaps ask yourself why most collectors don’t want cleaned coins. Or, you may be trying to figure out what a cleaned coin looks like versus a regular, uncleaned coin. If you fall into either of those two camps, this post is for you.   … [Read more...]

5 Cheap Coin Supplies You Need & Where To Find Them

cheap coin supplies

Cheap coin supplies are in high demand by collectors who want to take care of their coins but don’t have much… ahem… “coin” to spare (cue the joke punchline drum shot… ba dum sssssst). But, in all seriousness (OK, I’m not really going to get too serious – this is a blog post about a fun hobby after all), buying coin supplies can be a very expensive burden on coin collectors who have only a few bucks or so each week to spend on their passion. So how can coin collectors on a budget find … [Read more...]

How To Collect Short Sets: 5 Easy Coin Collections For Collectors On A Budget

short sets

Short sets – miniature date-and-mintmark coin collections for a given series – are highly popular for coin collectors on a shoestring budget. A short set of coins is less expensive because it contains fewer coins than a typical, complete date-and-mintmark run of coins for a series and usually avoids the expensive key-date coins. These budget coin collecting sets also provide you with a springboard to finish the rest of that series should your finances later permit. What follows below … [Read more...]

How Selling Old Coins Can Help You Afford To Buy New Coins For Your Coin Collection

sell-coins

I’ve been collecting coins for a long time – since I was the age of 11, to be exact. In that time, I’ve been buying and selling old coins and have spent an amount that’s easily into the thousands of dollars. I would have spent much more money than I have, though, if not for the fact that I’ve sold many of my old coins to buy new ones. In fact, looking back at my collection, which includes hundreds of coins, I probably have only a couple dozen or so of the coins that date back to the … [Read more...]

How To Collect The Kennedy Half Dollar

kennedy half dollar

The Kennedy half dollar is perhaps one of the most famous coins today, though its birth had a terribly unfortunate cause, and that was the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963 in Dallas, Texas. Ever since the first Kennedy half dollars rolled off the United States Mint presses in 1964, the coin has been immensely popular. In fact, widespread hoarding of the coin in the mid-1960s by individuals who wanted a memento of the fallen president is believed by many … [Read more...]

What Are Super Grade Coins? Here’s The “Perfect” Answer For You!

super grade coins

With the plethora of comic book hero movies coming out on the big screen lately, you may think super grade coins would have something to do with heroic money that manages to save the universe from a rogue brand of currency. While money does make the world go ‘round, a super grade coin isn’t necessarily going to don a cape and swoop out of the sky to save you from a runaway train. However, like comic book heroes, super grade coins are pretty flashy… So, what exactly is a super grade coin? … [Read more...]

5 Coin Collecting Supplies Every Beginning Coin Collector Must Have

coin collecting supplies

Every coin collector, early on in his or her ventures in the hobby, eventually gets to the point where they need to start investing a little money in coin collecting supplies to enjoy the pastime to its fullest. When I was 11 years old and first started collecting coins, buying supplies was not initially on the top of my to-do list. But before long, I began setting aside a little bit of my coin collecting budget for items that would become important in my numismatic … [Read more...]