Author Topic: The scary undeniable problem with Pagodas  (Read 16683 times)

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Underbidder

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The scary undeniable problem with Pagodas
« on: June 16, 2012, 02:51:58 AM »
http://www.ebay.com/itm/1984-China-Ancient-Pagoda-Gold-Gilt-Medal-Set-/120932028837?pt=US_World_Coins&hash=item1c281c51a5#ht_3792wt_922


If the gold plated ones corrode, so will the silver plated ones too, over time.

Are the ones you are buying, plated? 

How can you be sure?

Offline pandamonium

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Re: The scary undeniable problem with Pagodas
« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2012, 09:20:13 AM »
The silver pagodas are not .999 but are a sterling so not as many issues w/ spots etc.  I think many other MCC will corrode over time before the sterling coins will.  It is in the hands of NGC now to determing if pagodas are plate or real silver.  Rumors I get from dealers is to hang on to your pagodas.  Why?  No answer yet but the hint is that NGC MAY determine pagodas are real and not plate.  I have no clue until an announcement.  I will put my vote w/ the knowledgeable coin dealers and hang on to or buy pagodas................

Offline NumiKat

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Re: The scary undeniable problem with Pagodas
« Reply #2 on: June 16, 2012, 10:10:33 AM »
Are you sure the ones in the auction are gold-plated? I could be wrong, but they look sort of  :001_unsure:like brass to me.

Underbidder

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Re: The scary undeniable problem with Pagodas
« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2012, 11:59:43 AM »
The silver pagodas are not .999 but are a sterling so not as many issues w/ spots etc.  I think many other MCC will corrode over time before the sterling coins will.  It is in the hands of NGC now to determing if pagodas are plate or real silver.  ...  No answer yet but the hint is that NGC MAY determine pagodas are real and not plate.

The latest thinking is that there are both sterling Pagodas, and silver plated, and gilt Pagodas.   Just the same as the 1984 Goldfish, which NGC has * finally* recognized as such.
It makes so much sense- the Goldfish and Pagodas were both released at the same time, in similar configurations: sterling in fancy ornate carved wooden boxes, and plated in "four-pack" plain wrap.

Offline bonke

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Re: The scary undeniable problem with Pagodas
« Reply #4 on: June 16, 2012, 12:03:06 PM »
I own two sets of (1984) pagoda medals.  They have been authenticated, graded and slabbed by NGC as S20G.  They are very attractive silver medals.  Over time, I have seen speculation in this coin forum about 1) existence of silver versions, silver plated versions and gilt plated versions, 2) whether these versions were or were not authorized by and issued by the China Mint, and 3) whether NGC has made "mistakes" with the pagoda medals which were submitted for authentication.  These speculations have led to a sharp decline in the prices for pagoda medals.  With this decline, I have been tempted to add a 3rd or 4th set of silver pagoda medals to my collection.  I am not interested in the silver-plated or gilt plated versions, even if they were authorized by and issued by the China Mint.  While this speculation may help me as a collector, I doubt whether it is helpful for investors or dealers.  Once the doubt is raised, it is difficult to eliminate it.  The lingering doubt will continue to impact value for a very long time.  Mark Bonke    

Offline badon

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Re: The scary undeniable problem with Pagodas
« Reply #5 on: June 18, 2012, 10:25:55 PM »
Those coins are toned like brass. In addition, they appear to be made with known-fake dies, although the photos aren't good enough for me to be 100% sure of that. The box is a more recent manufacture than the original silver pagoda boxes, but I don't know much more about it than that.

Once the doubt is raised, it is difficult to eliminate it.  The lingering doubt will continue to impact value for a very long time.

Underbidder knows this, and seems to be entertained by it, at the very real financial expense of people who listen to him - that's probably why he is constantly posting FUD on this forum. No person with good intentions constantly talks about things they don't like.

Although Underbidder is smart enough to fool a lot of people, he's not smart enough to fool everyone, especially the talented people on this forum. I think most of Underbidder's negative influence is on people who read the forum, but don't actively participate. FUD and trolling are somewhat unavoidable, and as bonke has already pointed out, it's very beneficial to those of us who are buying these coins. So, for those reasons and more, I'm reluctant to intervene, or even mention this in a larger stage.

Manipulation-for-entertainment is extremely rare, and usually doesn't spread very far before people realize what's going on. I doubt it will have much lasting effect once the data is published and verifiable at the Coin Compendium. With almost all known pagodas already recorded in the CC, the raw data available is incredible and only waiting for someone to study and make some conclusions. I should probably publish more of the information I have, like I did with the box photos.

There's a rumor circulating now that NGC is preparing to release new information that is positive for the solid silver pagodas. Either way, I'm very patient, and I can wait a lot longer than I already have. The pagodas and goldfish are among the most important of China's early modern coinage, and that is never going to change.

Offline Gilmore

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Re: The scary undeniable problem with Pagodas
« Reply #6 on: June 18, 2012, 10:56:35 PM »
Those coins are toned like brass. In addition, they appear to be made with known-fake dies, although the photos aren't good enough for me to be 100% sure of that.

I am the seller of this set. The medals are not brass but gold-plated. The "brass-like" look is due to a reflection of a white background I used. If you look at the first photo showing the medals inside the box you can easily see their luster. I have two more gold plated sets in an excellent condition to compare to and I see no difference in the details. In these photos the medals actually look worse than they really are.

Regarding this ebay listing, I provided photos from 2 different angles that show as honestly as possible the condition of the medals. It is very important to me that buyer will not be surprised and will know exactly what he is going to get. In addition the buyer can return the medals if he is not satisfied with them. This is the best I can do to eliminate any risk from the buyer.

Offline badon

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Re: The scary undeniable problem with Pagodas
« Reply #7 on: June 18, 2012, 11:03:42 PM »
Thanks for the clarification Gilmore. Reflective surfaces can be confounding. I see you have given permission for your CCF photos to go on the Coin Compendium:

http://china-mint.info/forum/index.php?topic=5260.msg31120#msg31120

If you have full resolution photos of these coins, I would love to put them on the CC for study. I do not own a set of these, and if what happened with the goldfish repeats with pagodas, these may be deemed genuine, and suddenly quite valuable.

One problem I noticed was that it appears the obverse and reverse photos are not matched. If you decide to let us have your best photos of these coins, can you clarify which obverse goes with which reverse, so we can study them properly?

I can add a sighting for them to the CC, also, just so we can have a record of their appearance on the market.

Offline Gilmore

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Re: The scary undeniable problem with Pagodas
« Reply #8 on: June 18, 2012, 11:07:30 PM »
Sure Badon, I will provide high-res photos of this set and another set in a good condition.

Offline Gilmore

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Re: The scary undeniable problem with Pagodas
« Reply #9 on: June 18, 2012, 11:14:46 PM »
One problem I noticed was that it appears the obverse and reverse photos are not matched.

They actually do. I took 2 photos of each side from 2 different angles since it was very hard to show the toned areas clearly from one angle. Every angle revealed some toned areas that were "hidden" in the other due to the reflection of the proof surface.

Underbidder

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Re: The scary undeniable problem with Pagodas
« Reply #10 on: June 18, 2012, 11:28:36 PM »
Does searching for truth, now take a backseat to striving to maintain unsupported values at all costs? If so, that would too bad, as the only losers would be those new collectors who are depending on what they rely on as experts opinion.  There was a lot of exuberant cheerleading when these Pagodas hit a reported $24,000.  They have been continued to be hyped, and when more of them showed up in greater numbers than would be expected, it was swept under the rug.
Kona Jim wrote there was a reason Clark was selling his cheap. He said it and let it end at that.  That the silent market behind the invisible hand knew something was going on, and were pushing values lower for good reason.  Am I  now the sole target of a personal attack and name calling because I try to dig deeper and find the actual truth about these and other medals?  Poconopenn originally laid out very detailed explanations about the existence of plated coins in addition to sterling. I agreed, based on my research, and I have posted about logical explanations to the mysteries.  PandaExpress took the ball and found out more information than anyone previous, and got NGC involved too in discovering the truth. So are there plans to go ahead and castigate Kona Jim and Poconopenn and PandaExpress along with me?  I think all collectors want to know the truth about their collection. I know I do.
Yeah, I've got both sterling and plated specimens, and I wish I would have known before I overpaid, I bet others would have liked to have known, too.

  Until very recently, a tiny vocal minority ( of one individual) who seems to have a lot invested in these, refused stubbornly to give in to even the possibility of the existence of plated medals.  Now that position cannot be defended any longer.  They were all "fakes" , you see.  No plated ones, because that truth would
harm collection values if it were to come out.

 That was an incorrect assessment, by the way. There is no manipulation, (coming from my end anyway, others have PMd me they fear a LOT of manipulation and "pump and dump" is coming downward from another direction. I am only on a steady march towards uncovering the truth which will protect collectors investments in the long run, by furnishing true information, and help investors and collectors know the true value about what they are paying for.  I call that Good Intentioned.

By the way, a quote attributed to Mark Twain (although not proven):
"It's easier to fool people than to convince them they have been fooled" - - Mark Twain


*see how easy that is not to call out people by name, but rather make arguments based on truth and principles?
And I thought the job of a moderator was to moderate?  Moderate disparate positions, not just bully theirs, in which they may have a financial conflict of interest.

Offline KonaJim

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Re: The scary undeniable problem with Pagodas
« Reply #11 on: June 19, 2012, 12:08:53 AM »
My position on Pagoda's is very simple.  To the stock market for an analogy.  When a publicly traded company experiences "accounting irregularities" you run for the hills.  That doesn't mean that every company is fraudulent.  You are just avoiding potential problems.  If you don't know what you are buying and you can't tell for sure, and experts, and coin grading companies are having difficulty ferreting out the truth why be involved?  That in a nutshell is my position.  I don't know how to find out if what I'm buying is what it's said to be. Also, I don't want the responsibility of warranting an item that I can't be sure of.  They are beautiful coins, but not for me, only because I am too conservative to risk buying something I can't guarantee.  All perspectives should be welcomed.

Offline shibaji

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Re: The scary undeniable problem with Pagodas
« Reply #12 on: June 19, 2012, 01:50:16 AM »
I am expecting matching varieties in pagodas with goldfishes. Goldfish has 1984 silver, silver plated and gold gilt. So far I have seen silver and gold gilt pagodas. Silver plated to be seen. Has anyone seen them ?

Underbidder

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Re: The scary undeniable problem with Pagodas
« Reply #13 on: June 19, 2012, 02:08:43 AM »
Exactly. That is the $million question.  Seems to make sense, right?  We shall see.

But I'd suggest you consider being careful voicing that opinion.... You may be threatened for that here, called out personally by name, castigated, and have your motives questioned and your reputation trampled.


I know on some investment advisory services, the writer (moderator?)  has to disclose their position in fairness to the readers so the readers know of any potential conflict of financial interest in order to avoid "pump and dump" self enrichment.  I wonder, sadly, have we reached that, here?

Offline shibaji

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Re: The scary undeniable problem with Pagodas
« Reply #14 on: June 19, 2012, 02:42:50 AM »
I am a bit confused. Why would finding new variety with different metal composition be problematic ? I take it as more fun to collect. Anyway - hopefully alike goldfishes, NGC will come up with a formal statement about pagodas soon. You guys are big shots here - I am a spec of dust. Just having fun while collecting MCCs. Cheers!