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A thoughtful present


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Nice coin! Set it free! What I do is take a fine toothed saw or file to one of the seams near a corner. Once I’ve made a bit of a cut along the seam, I use a screwdriver to pry the two halves apart. This usually cracks them without totally destroying the plastic and keeps sharp or prying tools away from the coin. There are a lot of methods to cracking them… some likely easier than mine but it works.

Edited by Orange Julius
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6 hours ago, Nerosmyfavorite68 said:

This coin was a most thoughtful present. Unfortunately it's entombed, but I have no experience in freeing tombs.  I'd personally grade it VF.



Nero., Your out of focus photos don't give an accurate picture of the coin 😵. I'm guessing the coin is Ch XF by strike, however, the surface most likely would have graded 2/5, that's why the person who sent the coin to NGC didn't go all the way. Having this coin slabbed was a waste of money 😉.

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While my photos aren't great, the NGC ones aren't phenomenal either.  They also have a Byzantine coin for the reverse of the coin! Theirs is clearer, but makes the coin look ten times worse than it does in person.

Their photo does better show the pock-marking on the face of the portrait.  Peering in through the slab, there's wear to the eagle and pock-marking on the face. 

I think this is only my second or third Philip II. 

However, it was still a very thoughtful gift; one within my interests.  The local coin store only has a small offering of ancients.  They're sometimes slabbed, sometimes not.


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When you pay NGC for their opinion you are agreeing to their standards.  They define letter grades as only wear and 90% obverse.  If you want strike or surfaces to enter into the mix, you have to pay extra but if you want them to ignore the elephant in the room and just get a meaningless grade on those bargain slabs, nooooo problem.   That takes us to the wise words here recently posted by

20 hours ago, Prieure de Sion said:

But the most important thing - you must like the coin. You must be satisfied. You must find it pretty. Then everything is good. 

If you really want to open a can of worms, set yourself up as a third party grader  but use a desirability scale when you would down-value an AU example where most are seen MS and give high praise to a holed and scratched coin that might be the best available for decades.  

Neither of my Philip II Antioch tets are all that great but for different reasons.  The one as Caesar has almost no wear but shows the ugly truth that the teen had severe acne. (---or is it localized roughness on the portrait?) A cheap slab might get  AU but paying extra to get at best a 2/5 for surface would not seem smart.  That bit of red remaining suggests someone (not me) removed some blotchy patina and was not happy what was underneath.  I'll never know but some of you younger people might see this coin again after I'm gone but with a little tooling on the face making it quite a lot better looking --- unless you get caught. 


The lefty Augustus has rather little wear as well because the detail loss is from a flat strike which did not erase the texture of the cast planchet.  If you were grading this coin would you prefer to admire the full legend and decent detail but downgrade it for wear (broken laurel wreath means Fine).  


Edited by dougsmit
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