Author Topic: Varieties of silver Historical Figures, 1984 to 1993  (Read 97683 times)

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Offline SANDAC

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Re: Varieties of silver Historical Figures, 1984 to 1993
« Reply #15 on: November 27, 2011, 11:01:34 AM »
The next vanishing act is the 1990 Zheng He.
Picture 1 shows a normal ship in the background. 
Picture 2 show a ship with missing mast as circled in red.  One explaination is that it is a particularly weak strike, but there are other features about the ship, like the way the sails meet the deck of the ship, that are different.  I think these are from different dies.

Offline DiggingNorway

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Re: Varieties of silver Historical Figures, 1984 to 1993
« Reply #16 on: November 27, 2011, 11:07:11 AM »
very interesting, but let us discuss if vanishing effects qualify for variations... do you think they do? I would be more prone to "declare" a variety if the coin showed a clear differet design. If a sail was missing, or if the small wessel on the right was missing, but the rest of the coin was well striked. Wow that would be cool. When we are to kind of try to define varities in this series, especially taken all the different versions into account, we should also discuss criteria as to what represents consistent varities.

Posting all the differences as we do now is an important first step...

Offline DiggingNorway

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Re: Varieties of silver Historical Figures, 1984 to 1993
« Reply #17 on: November 27, 2011, 11:14:06 AM »
Here is my only Zhen He
It is "full mast/normal ship" version.

Offline SANDAC

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Re: Varieties of silver Historical Figures, 1984 to 1993
« Reply #18 on: November 27, 2011, 11:21:01 AM »
I agree we should present all the differences first (Oh, there are so many differences), and then decide whether they are sufficiently apart to be designated as different varieties.
My selection criteria is based on more practical consideration: the "variety" needs to be visually striking so that I can pick them out at a glance or from a fuzzy eBay photo.  Thus the "fuzzy picture test" I mentioned before.  So a lot of varieties I talked about will be based on the difference in contrast between frosted foreground and mirrored background.  I admit, this is but one way of judging varieties.

Offline DiggingNorway

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Re: Varieties of silver Historical Figures, 1984 to 1993
« Reply #19 on: November 27, 2011, 11:31:49 AM »
I agree, my hope is that we will find some consistent way of separating the original production from the re-strikes. If the data on the years of restrikes are correct, this should be possible. Until now my thesis is that
1) Restrikes came double sealed (we have only seen double sealed in the earlier years of the series, when we know restrikes were done) Originals thus came in the boxes and in capsules. I repeat this is a temporarily thesis. We need more data on packaging, including the gold coins.

2) Restrikes have much more sandy reliefs and in general do not show details, like facial features, patterns on baskets, belts, weapons etc as good. The relief is lower, the restrikes appear more "flat".

I do believe that vanishing varities, and different versions could show up in both categories, both the restrikes and the originals, however since I beleive that the restrikes were striked fewer times, and basically were made with less care, the event of vanishing should be more frequently observed in the original strikes. As a consequence; a long sleeve Li Zi Cheng, combined with low relief and little details, and sandy relief would indicate a restrike, however, as far as I know this year was not re-striked. So there are alot of more research to be done here...

Offline DiggingNorway

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Re: Varieties of silver Historical Figures, 1984 to 1993
« Reply #20 on: November 27, 2011, 11:35:54 AM »
btw: I am very curious as to what grade the vanishing hut got! In my opinion that should give the coin a lower grade than when compared with "full hut"... all else equal.

Offline SANDAC

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Re: Varieties of silver Historical Figures, 1984 to 1993
« Reply #21 on: November 27, 2011, 11:44:32 AM »
One way I can contribute to the restrike/original discussion is that I have purchased a dozen of the 1984 General in 1999 or 2000.  They are definitely not restrike.  I've examined them carefully previously.  They are remarkably uniform.  There is only one coin among them that's different, and it is not sufficient obvious to pass the "fuzzy picture test".  We can talk about this coin at some details, sharing photographs, etc.  If the discussion leads to actual physical examination and comparison, I can loan one or more of them to you and/or badon to be examined and compare to others 1984 General.  

Offline SANDAC

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Re: Varieties of silver Historical Figures, 1984 to 1993
« Reply #22 on: November 27, 2011, 11:51:05 AM »
The vanishing hut is also NGC graded PF68.  Now both the vanishing hut and short cape of the 1985 Chen Sheng are purchased off eBay because I spotted the variety difference and don't care about their grade.  So it is entirely possible that the "vanishing" features can receive a 69/70 grade.  In fact, I know the Cai Wenji with fading lettering that I submitted to NGC has received a PF69.  So vanishing during manufacturing does not affect grade.

Offline DiggingNorway

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Re: Varieties of silver Historical Figures, 1984 to 1993
« Reply #23 on: November 27, 2011, 12:19:31 PM »
One way I can contribute to the restrike/original discussion is that I have purchased a dozen of the 1984 General in 1999 or 2000.  They are definitely not restrike.  I've examined them carefully previously.  They are remarkably uniform.  There is only one coin among them that's different, and it is not sufficient obvious to pass the "fuzzy picture test".  We can talk about this coin at some details, sharing photographs, etc.  If the discussion leads to actual physical examination and comparison, I can loan one or more of them to you and/or badon to be examined and compare to others 1984 General. 

I think a high resolution photo will do fine. Why dont you post the photo? So I can compare...

Offline DiggingNorway

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Re: Varieties of silver Historical Figures, 1984 to 1993
« Reply #24 on: November 27, 2011, 12:26:25 PM »
The vanishing hut is also NGC graded PF68.  Now both the vanishing hut and short cape of the 1985 Chen Sheng are purchased off eBay because I spotted the variety difference and don't care about their grade.  So it is entirely possible that the "vanishing" features can receive a 69/70 grade.  In fact, I know the Cai Wenji with fading lettering that I submitted to NGC has received a PF69.  So vanishing during manufacturing does not affect grade.

This leaves me pondering. If grading uncirculated proof coins are suppose to reflect how well the coin looks, e.g. if all the features of the coin are there (!), it should count. That hut is a cool hut, all else equal I would prefer a coin with the full hut, also the text of Cai Wenji, it has a purpose, a meaning, if some of the words are gone, a coin showing the full meaning should get a better grade. I take this as a sign that the graders are not aware of all the varities since they dont have a lot of experience from the coins... a weak strike, or missing features must be graded lower, if not, what is the purpose of grading proof uncirculated coins?

Offline DiggingNorway

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Re: Varieties of silver Historical Figures, 1984 to 1993
« Reply #25 on: November 27, 2011, 01:01:37 PM »
After having reexamined the varities thus far I will argue that the long flag vs. short flag Sun Wu and the Chen Sheng & Wu Gang cape varities are good candidates for varities, better than the Cai wenji and the text and the missing hut.

If I am not mistaken; the former two varities would need a different die? The obviosuly with intent made different designs. Take the cape of Chen Sheng & Wu Gang; they made sure that the upper tie and the elbow and the belt (in the short cape) version was equally good designs as compared to the version where the cape with the folds take of the same space of the blancket.

This is just a proposition, but I feel that these two varities are closer to be declared varities than the vanishing features... any thoughts?

Offline SANDAC

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Re: Varieties of silver Historical Figures, 1984 to 1993
« Reply #26 on: November 27, 2011, 02:21:31 PM »
Oh wait, I'm not done yet.  I have not introduce the third types of variation that's by far the most common in the historical series.  This variation is the equivalent of "super clouded claw", "clouded claw", and "clear claw".  I has to do with whether the mirrored field became the frosted body or vice versa.  You've already ovserved that in Sima Qian and Cai Lun discusstion.  I'll present a few more examples today.

Offline SANDAC

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Re: Varieties of silver Historical Figures, 1984 to 1993
« Reply #27 on: November 27, 2011, 02:29:20 PM »
I think grading is a statement about how well a coin represents the die that struck it.  As long as the coin faithfully represents the impression of the die regardless of how flawed the die is, it will receive a high grade.  In practice, that's all the grader is able to evaluate.  The "first strike" where the die is in pristine condition does receive special mention, but not higher grade.  And yes, I would rather have coins from a pristine die.

Offline badon

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Re: Varieties of silver Historical Figures, 1984 to 1993
« Reply #28 on: November 27, 2011, 02:50:08 PM »
DiggingNorway, I just moved the Li Zicheng photos you uploaded to CCT19 "1990 22 g silver Chinese historical figures 4 coin set". Which side is "officially" the obverse and reverse? I could make a Li Zicheng subtype for CCT19 and call it "1990 22 g silver Chinese historical figures Li Zicheng", but I think you should try it yourself (or SANDAC).

Just go to CCT19 and click "Add a new subtype of this type" and just put in for the type name "1990 22 g silver Chinese historical figures Li Zicheng". Then, you can go back to CCT19, scroll down to where your pictures are shown in the image gallery, and click on them. At the top of the file page, click "Edit", and you can change or the CCT numbers that the image belongs to. So, they should belong to CCT19 AND the new Li Zicheng subtype that you will create.

Don't worry about doing something wrong, because I will fix it, no problem.

Offline DiggingNorway

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Re: Varieties of silver Historical Figures, 1984 to 1993
« Reply #29 on: November 27, 2011, 02:59:29 PM »
I would say that the side with the portrait is the obverse.... the side with the stars is the reverse