Author Topic: Another PCGS gold panda with off-gassing...  (Read 8065 times)

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Offline Honus

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Another PCGS gold panda with off-gassing...
« on: February 11, 2013, 01:29:23 PM »
Just posted on the 'Bay, 2006 1/2oz gold, PCGS MS69.  If the photos are accurate, the coin is very hazy and foggy, which other collectors far more experienced than myself have theorized as "off-gassing" from the PCGS holder.  The seller in this case doesn't mention anything about it in the description, I'm posting it in case members here are considering the coin.  It's very possible that NCS (or PCGS) conservation techniques can remove the "fog", but I don't know that to be a certainty:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=271154311793&ssPageName=ADME:B:SS:US:1123
Eric Liquori
Anvil Fine Wares
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Offline 1668Chris

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Re: Another PCGS gold panda with off-gassing...
« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2013, 02:10:37 PM »
Here is a link with some great pics of this happening, pls pan down:

http://www.goldismoney2.com/showthread.php?27399-PCGS-SLABS-TONING!


Offline Honus

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Re: Another PCGS gold panda with off-gassing...
« Reply #2 on: February 11, 2013, 02:54:43 PM »
Chris, thanks for the link, I hadn't seen that thread.   It appears - if I'm interpreting everything properly - that there's more than one issue happening.  One is toning, and I think I've seen that also.  I have a '93 gold panda small date 1/4oz in a PCGS holder, and it has a pretty orange color - it looks very toned, but the toning covers the coin 100% so it doesn't look splotchy.  The coin just looks more orange-yellow than yellow, but not at all unattractive, so I've never had an issue with it.   

The other issue is the milky-white fogginess and that is just plain ugly.  I've seen it multiple times, in person, and it's a deal-breaker for me. 

Thanks again.
Eric Liquori
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Offline 1668Chris

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Re: Another PCGS gold panda with off-gassing...
« Reply #3 on: February 11, 2013, 03:08:15 PM »
No problem.

Two things may be happening at the same time. One, the holder is not airtight (did you read the story in the thread from the Hurricane Sandy collector) and two, it is possible that the label itself is giving off sulfur gas as it deteriorates (both paper and ink) due to exposure from harmful gases (this is a theory of mine).  I do not know what type of paper PCGS uses for labels.  I doubt the actual plastic holder is the cause.

This theory may make sense, because when NGC grades comics, they place micro-chamber paper inside the comic book sheets to absorb gases that are emitted as paper deteriorates over time.

Offline Honus

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Re: Another PCGS gold panda with off-gassing...
« Reply #4 on: February 11, 2013, 03:32:29 PM »
I hadn't even considered paper being the culprit, but you may be right. 

I did read the Hurricane Sandy post....sad to read, terrible what happened.  I was in Homestead after Hurricane Andrew, so I understand.

It's funny he mentioned that he actually liked the colored toning on the gold - I think I'm the same way, but clearly in the minority.   I'd love to know why in some cases the coins tone in colors, sometimes attractively, and others with that milky haze.   Whatever it is, I'm glad there's ongoing discussion - that eventually has to lead to action or progress.
Eric Liquori
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Offline PandaCollector

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Re: Another PCGS gold panda with off-gassing...
« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2013, 05:11:03 PM »
I hadn't even considered paper being the culprit, but you may be right. 

I did read the Hurricane Sandy post....sad to read, terrible what happened.  I was in Homestead after Hurricane Andrew, so I understand.

It's funny he mentioned that he actually liked the colored toning on the gold - I think I'm the same way, but clearly in the minority.   I'd love to know why in some cases the coins tone in colors, sometimes attractively, and others with that milky haze.   Whatever it is, I'm glad there's ongoing discussion - that eventually has to lead to action or progress.

I have a couple of evenly toned graded gold coins that I think are very pretty, kind of like the red color an old cent develops. Haze, OTOH, is a disaster.

Best wishes,
Peter Anthony
China Pricepedia
www.pandacollector.com

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Re: Another PCGS gold panda with off-gassing...
« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2013, 05:18:34 PM »
I have a couple of evenly toned graded gold coins that I think are very pretty, kind of like the red color an old cent develops. Haze, OTOH, is a disaster.

Best wishes,
Peter Anthony
China Pricepedia
www.pandacollector.com

Peter, any chance you can post a pic of those gold coins - I'm curious to see how they've toned, if you have the time.   I have to get to the vault to pull mine out, but I'd be happy to do the same with my favorite 2 or 3 heavily toned gold coins.
Eric Liquori
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Offline PCGS-ASIA

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Re: Another PCGS gold panda with off-gassing...
« Reply #7 on: February 12, 2013, 12:06:53 AM »
I'm glad you posted this.

I have a board member sending one in, and perhaps we can find a way to figure out what is going on.

The specimen I will see soon looks treatable.

I would also posit that NO holder is airtight....

My base guess it is something on the coin itself.  Its not the holder - and I do find the theory about the flip
interesting enough to investigate. However, there is a lot of plastic between the flip and the coin I'll check the "seal"
so to speak.


Please try to alert me to issues like this (and others!) when they come up - I'm like the guy from the government:
"I am from the government and I am here to help you".

Keep me posted and I'll keep you posted.....thanks!



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Re: Another PCGS gold panda with off-gassing...
« Reply #8 on: February 12, 2013, 09:38:48 AM »
That's excellent PCGS-Asia, glad to have you as a resource here, and looking forward to learning your findings on the coin en route to you. 
Eric Liquori
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Re: Another PCGS gold panda with off-gassing...
« Reply #9 on: February 12, 2013, 11:24:08 AM »

My base guess it is something on the coin itself.  Its not the holder - and I do find the theory about the flip
interesting enough to investigate. However, there is a lot of plastic between the flip and the coin I'll check the "seal"
so to speak.


In opinion the problem is with the inner gaskets found in the old PCGS holders.  What I noticed was many of the coins with the non-edge view gaskets tended to develop yellow and green haze very quickly, 6 months to 1 year of storage.  Once PCGS went to edge-view gaskets the problem was minimized but not eliminated.  Off the cuff I would estimate that the old style PCGS gaskets 10%-15% of the PCGS slabbed gold pandas have issues, with the new gaskets 3-4% have issues and NGC holders 1% have issues.   

Another possible root cause could be the air quality in the building due to the local environment, it would very interesting to compare air quality at NGC office with PCGS office to see if there are different levels of contamination in the air. Even more interesting is comparing contamination levels in China offices for these two companies vs their US locations.

Thank you for looking into this, you are a great asset to this forum.

Arif

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Offline 1668Chris

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Re: Another PCGS gold panda with off-gassing...
« Reply #11 on: February 12, 2013, 01:55:32 PM »
I have to believe that if the gasket were the source of the problem, there would be a much higher rate of incidence of issues, since every coin (both gold and silver) would be exposed to the same root cause, and experience similar issues.

That being said, airborne contaminants are everywhere, and even the best filtering systems cannot keep out harmful gases such as chlorine and sulfur (clean room tests have proved this).  I also have to believe the air quality in Hong Kong is much different than in CA or FL.

One must keep in mind that since holders are not airtight, they are susceptible to all sorts of environmental challenges.  Just think of coins life cycle as it moves from a collectors hand to a grading company and back.  There are issues regarding changes in air pressure that can cause the slab  to expand and contract during transportation, especially during flight via US mail or another carrier, or just natural changes in air pressure as it moves across the country (or even changes in air pressure while storing your coins can vary due to atmospheric systems) 

Also, there can be extreme temperature changes that have to be considered and changes in air quality.  Air quality in Denver vs. Los Angeles vs. NYC can vary significantly depending on different times of the year.   

All of these things can contribute to issues down the road, and I am not sure there is one solution to the problem.  But proper steps can at least minimize some of the challenges.  Also, these issues are not unique.   These same corrosion challenges have been faced by  the electronics, automotive and aerospace industries, which is why many companies ship vital component parts using intercept shrink wraps or bags, or totes.

Obviously if I had my druthers, every coin shipped to and from a grading company should be in an Intercept bag for protection. While this is a biased view, I know this may not be realistic.  However I only hope that by making collectors aware of these issues will at least help focus their attention on proper storage.

Offline Honus

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Re: Another PCGS gold panda with off-gassing...
« Reply #12 on: February 12, 2013, 02:19:28 PM »
I have to believe that if the gasket were the source of the problem, there would be a much higher rate of incidence of issues, since every coin (both gold and silver) would be exposed to the same root cause, and experience similar issues.

That being said, airborne contaminants are everywhere, and even the best filtering systems cannot keep out harmful gases such as chlorine and sulfur (clean room tests have proved this).  I also have to believe the air quality in Hong Kong is much different than in CA or FL.

One must keep in mind that since holders are not airtight, they are susceptible to all sorts of environmental challenges.  Just think of coins life cycle as it moves from a collectors hand to a grading company and back.  There are issues regarding changes in air pressure that can cause the slab  to expand and contract during transportation, especially during flight via US mail or another carrier, or just natural changes in air pressure as it moves across the country (or even changes in air pressure while storing your coins can vary due to atmospheric systems) 

Also, there can be extreme temperature changes that have to be considered and changes in air quality.  Air quality in Denver vs. Los Angeles vs. NYC can vary significantly depending on different times of the year.   

All of these things can contribute to issues down the road, and I am not sure there is one solution to the problem.  But proper steps can at least minimize some of the challenges.  Also, these issues are not unique.   These same corrosion challenges have been faced by  the electronics, automotive and aerospace industries, which is why many companies ship vital component parts using intercept shrink wraps or bags, or totes.

Obviously if I had my druthers, every coin shipped to and from a grading company should be in an Intercept bag for protection. While this is a biased view, I know this may not be realistic.  However I only hope that by making collectors aware of these issues will at least help focus their attention on proper storage.


Somewhat tangential to the main crux of the thread, but totally related to what you're saying Chris...on each of my last 2 NGC submissions (groups of 10 and 12 coins), I had one coin come back with a whole bunch of copper spots.  These were both coins that I examined under direct lighting, at 10x magnification, and were completely copper-spot free.  Yet only 2 weeks later they were returned by NGC, encapsulated and looking otherwise dandy, but with copper spots galore.   And we're not talking about little tiny dots that you need a magnifier to see...they came back with spots large enough to easily see with the naked eye.   So within the two week period from when they left my house until they returned, they were exposed to something that caused multiple copper spots that took just days to appear and grow.   Yet, it only happened to 2 of the 22 total coins that were submitted...the other 20 are as flawless as the day I submitted them.  I can't explain it, and I doubt NGC could either, though I haven't called them.  Maybe I will.   If anyone has any ideas, I'm all ears.  It sure seems weird.
Eric Liquori
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Offline PCGS-ASIA

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Re: Another PCGS gold panda with off-gassing...
« Reply #13 on: February 13, 2013, 02:12:33 AM »
The copper exists as impurities in the alloy - a little lump or chunk that just didn't mix well.

Why they would immediately react is the question.  Interesting stuff.  Salt air?

Modern minting processes are creating headaches for everyone.  Stay tuned.

Offline Honus

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Re: Another PCGS gold panda with off-gassing...
« Reply #14 on: February 13, 2013, 10:27:24 AM »
The copper exists as impurities in the alloy - a little lump or chunk that just didn't mix well.

Why they would immediately react is the question.  Interesting stuff.  Salt air?

Modern minting processes are creating headaches for everyone.  Stay tuned.

I did end up calling NGC yesterday, not to complain, just to see if they had any thoughts.   They transferred the call to NCS, and two different people said they'd never heard of multiple copper spots appearing out of the blue on a spot-free coin in under two weeks.  They had me describe exactly how I do my submissions, and when I told them that I always placed the rubber-banded bundle of coins-in-flips inside a ziploc baggie, they told me to not use ziploc baggies anymore.   They jumped on that detail immediately, thinking that somehow moist air is being trapped in the baggie with the coins, but I use fresh baggies out of the box and I'm in Arizona (dry climate) so I don't know how that could be the issue but that's what they said.  Otherwise, they were stumped.   
Eric Liquori
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