Scarface questions

General discussion board about VAMs, but no buy/sell offers
DHalladay
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Scarface questions

Post by DHalladay » Mon Feb 15, 2021 11:59 pm

Being housebound by choice (lots of snow over the weekend, but shoveling done) and feeling lazy (a perk of retirement), I decided to revisit a longtime VAM favorite.

I feel lucky to own an 1888-O VAM 1B Scarface. In 25+ years as a fairly serious collector it is by far the most expensive raw coin I’ve ever bought. I can’t help but wonder if it came from the BU roll of Scarfaces that Jeff Oxman found in the 1970s. (If there’s ever a VAMworld “you suck!” Hall of Fame, that deserves to be on it.)

Considering how often Scarfaces have truly ugly toning and/or brutally marked-up surfaces, I always smile at how bright, white, lustrous and nice mine is for a 62 – and I always frown at how my photos never do it justice. Maybe it’s time to try a regrade.

21488296 obv.jpg
21488296 obv.jpg (283.39 KiB) Viewed 876 times
21488296 rev.jpg
21488296 rev.jpg (288.93 KiB) Viewed 876 times

Too me, one of the big attractions to Scarfaces are questions about them:

– Why did clash damage to the obverse die go unnoticed for so long that it evolved into a catastrophic crack across Liberty’s face that eventually stretched all the way down to her lower hair in the wonderful Harrison-10 stage?
21488296 crack blobs.jpg
21488296 crack blobs.jpg (285.37 KiB) Viewed 876 times
21488296 crack jaw.jpg
21488296 crack jaw.jpg (309.51 KiB) Viewed 876 times
When in doubt... don't.

DHalladay
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by DHalladay » Tue Feb 16, 2021 12:01 am

– How long did it take the crack to get to that extreme point?
– And how many coins might have been struck when it did? I can’t image it was very many. After all, wasn’t the die doing its best to split into 2 pieces?
– Or did the clash damage perhaps not go unnoticed at all? Scarfaces never seem to have clashing evidence at Liberty’s neck, lips, or back of cap. Maybe the damage was addressed soon after it happened, as is suggested by the over-polishing seen below the designer’s initial M.

21488296 crack lower.jpg
21488296 crack lower.jpg (289.5 KiB) Viewed 874 times

– The eagle’s huge ‘beard’ and other clashing remnants behind its neck are well known. But what caused the gouges (?) I see at the lowest tips of its inner left wing, and in the wreath above the 2nd L in DOLLAR?
21488296 clash neck.jpg
21488296 clash neck.jpg (285.63 KiB) Viewed 874 times
21488296 gouge left wing.jpg
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21488296 gouge wreath.jpg
21488296 gouge wreath.jpg (321.76 KiB) Viewed 874 times

That’s all I have. It’s past nap time and I have a very willing cat nearby. Comments, thoughts and answers will be most appreciated.
When in doubt... don't.

VamHelsing
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by VamHelsing » Tue Feb 16, 2021 12:51 am

To quote, "Let me show you my little friend"... Still trying to AQ one of these!

JASONKFLO
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by JASONKFLO » Tue Feb 16, 2021 2:53 am

yes that is a very cool coin. We had 10" in Emmett , luckily none last night though my In laws to the west had 6" more
Jason Floyd
I climb Mountains , Grow Bamboo and like Coins

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messydesk
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by messydesk » Tue Feb 16, 2021 3:13 am

DHalladay wrote:
Mon Feb 15, 2021 11:59 pm
Being housebound by choice (lots of snow over the weekend, but shoveling done) and feeling lazy (a perk of retirement), I decided to revisit a longtime VAM favorite.

I feel lucky to own an 1888-O VAM 1B Scarface. In 25+ years as a fairly serious collector it is by far the most expensive raw coin I’ve ever bought. I can’t help but wonder if it came from the BU roll of Scarfaces that Jeff Oxman found in the 1970s. (If there’s ever a VAMworld “you suck!” Hall of Fame, that deserves to be on it.)
Except that he sold them for about $100 each.
– Why did clash [crack?] damage to the obverse die go unnoticed for so long that it evolved into a catastrophic crack across Liberty’s face that eventually stretched all the way down to her lower hair in the wonderful Harrison-10 stage?
Someone wasn't paying attention that day. No idea how many were released, although probably all that were made got out in the Treasury release, given Jeff's roll and the fact that you almost never see an AU coin (I've seen one, and the obverse field looks really weird with the die buckling).

The H1-H3 stages are not all that rare, but the later ones get rare quickly, telling me that it took a while for the crack to get as far as the nose, then it went the rest of the way pretty fast.

Had one made it to a Special Assay, I'm sure New Orleans would have received a stern talking-to.
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JohnGoldsmith
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by JohnGoldsmith » Tue Feb 16, 2021 3:17 am

Wonder if the hopper was full and a few made it. And the second batch was found and all was melted?
Or it was on a Friday close to quitting time.

vamnuke
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by vamnuke » Tue Feb 16, 2021 11:09 am

:o

Namvet69
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by Namvet69 » Tue Feb 16, 2021 11:28 am

Thanks for sharing the pics and info. I'd wager no one was paying attention to the press and minimal to the ejected Morgans. That hammer die was held tightly in place as it slowly broke up. Wonder what the press die speed was in 1888? Peace Roy

JohnGoldsmith
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by JohnGoldsmith » Tue Feb 16, 2021 2:28 pm

Here is the first one I held that was circulated.
Attachments
Scarface.jpg
Scarface.jpg (235.45 KiB) Viewed 771 times
Scarface1.jpg
Scarface1.jpg (56.7 KiB) Viewed 771 times

DHalladay
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by DHalladay » Tue Feb 16, 2021 3:48 pm

That is a gorgeous circ. Scarface John!
When in doubt... don't.

1878mimmo
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by 1878mimmo » Tue Feb 16, 2021 4:12 pm

Well it’s good to be back from Heart Surgery and then Getting Cov-19 so my year has been some what interesting but I would like to share a 1888-o H-O I picked up just recently need to send this off. I wonder is the market for H-O gone up at all ? My collecting the 1888-o H series has been my favorite and someday I’ll get those 7/8/9/ and 10s I have amassed a few of them over the years but I do find that the H-0 seems to be hardest to fine. Thanks again to all that posted wishing me well.
SEMPER Fi
Gary B
172CEA57-310C-45FB-B4AD-26ACD99F04EE.jpeg
H-0
172CEA57-310C-45FB-B4AD-26ACD99F04EE.jpeg (233.18 KiB) Viewed 752 times
Attachments
01C3ED06-8637-400E-8388-6FE1684D938F.jpeg
H-0 a
01C3ED06-8637-400E-8388-6FE1684D938F.jpeg (225.18 KiB) Viewed 752 times
2241CE1F-47FD-4E04-AD34-5D27FD670AC7.jpeg
H-0 b
2241CE1F-47FD-4E04-AD34-5D27FD670AC7.jpeg (234.68 KiB) Viewed 752 times

DHalladay
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by DHalladay » Tue Feb 16, 2021 4:16 pm

Is that pitting near LLA on the reverse?
When in doubt... don't.

1878mimmo
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by 1878mimmo » Tue Feb 16, 2021 4:23 pm

I do not think that it is

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messydesk
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by messydesk » Tue Feb 16, 2021 5:06 pm

JohnGoldsmith wrote:
Tue Feb 16, 2021 2:28 pm
Here is the first one I held that was circulated.
Is that the current PCGS lowball at VF30?
Welcome to the VAMWorld 2.0 discussion boards. R.I.P. old VAMWorld.

JohnGoldsmith
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by JohnGoldsmith » Tue Feb 16, 2021 5:22 pm

messydesk wrote:
Tue Feb 16, 2021 5:06 pm
JohnGoldsmith wrote:
Tue Feb 16, 2021 2:28 pm
Here is the first one I held that was circulated.
Is that the current PCGS lowball at VF30?
I do not know, my coin is a XF 40.

JohnGoldsmith
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by JohnGoldsmith » Tue Feb 16, 2021 6:19 pm

This is my XF 40 coin.
Attachments
Scarface XF40 (6).jpg
Scarface XF40 (6).jpg (129.45 KiB) Viewed 724 times
Scarface XF40 (5).jpg
Scarface XF40 (5).jpg (137.34 KiB) Viewed 724 times
Scarface XF40 (4).jpg
Scarface XF40 (4).jpg (136.25 KiB) Viewed 724 times
Scarface XF40 (3).jpg
Scarface XF40 (3).jpg (134.68 KiB) Viewed 724 times
Scarface XF40 (2).jpg
Scarface XF40 (2).jpg (113.62 KiB) Viewed 724 times

JohnGoldsmith
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by JohnGoldsmith » Tue Feb 16, 2021 6:20 pm

XF40
Attachments
Scarface XF40 (1).jpg
Scarface XF40 (1).jpg (136.13 KiB) Viewed 724 times

DHalladay
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by DHalladay » Tue Feb 16, 2021 6:50 pm

Looks super strong for a 40.
When in doubt... don't.

fogie
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by fogie » Tue Feb 16, 2021 6:59 pm

That H-0 is still very hard to find.

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vampicker
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Re: Scarface questions

Post by vampicker » Tue Feb 16, 2021 9:20 pm

I'll try to remember to do a side by side comparison of pieces the next time I have a Harrison 2 stage on my desk. The apparent degree of change on die state (or lack of change) can support an estimate that has to be better than a purely speculative WAG. I'd call my example (H-8) early mid die state with minimal by clearly visible flow lining.
often the crusher of hopes and dreams

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