Question about sending a coin out to be graded?

Dr Plugs

Jr. Member
May 30, 2023
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Hi all, about a month ago or so I posted a 1804 draped bust dime I was lucky enough to swing the detector over.

Given how scarce this coin is I want to send it away to be graded, but not sure how to go about doing this. For any of you that have sent coins away to be graded, where is the best place? How do you package the coin for mailing? I really want to send it away but am just scared something mite happen to it in the mail.

I'm guessing the addresses are discrete, I don't know how it would work to put a coin graders name on it then insure it for whatever I feel is fair, then hand it to someone at the post office, it would obviously be known what's inside and general value. Maybe I'm thinking too much into it, but this may be my best coin ever and I just want this process to be safe and secure, thanks.
 

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Your coin looks very nice for a detector find. By sending it in, you run the risk of it coming back ungraded, but in a holder that says “genuine, environmental damage”. It still might be worth doing due to the rarity. I only buy graded coins, but yours is nice enough and rare enough I think it would sell in a holder ungraded. As far as shipping coins, I have bought several thousand dollars worth of coins. All shipped through USPS. I’ve never lost one or had a problem. You can always send it registered if you’re worried. No one dares mess with registered mail.
 

Hi all, about a month ago or so I posted a 1804 draped bust dime I was lucky enough to swing the detector over.

Given how scarce this coin is I want to send it away to be graded, but not sure how to go about doing this. For any of you that have sent coins away to be graded, where is the best place? How do you package the coin for mailing? I really want to send it away but am just scared something mite happen to it in the mail.

I'm guessing the addresses are discrete, I don't know how it would work to put a coin graders name on it then insure it for whatever I feel is fair, then hand it to someone at the post office, it would obviously be known what's inside and general value. Maybe I'm thinking too much into it, but this may be my best coin ever and I just want this process to be safe and secure, thanks.
First of all I was in the same position as you are, so based from personal experience, here is what to do AND what I did. First of all, in a nutshell, it will be safe to ship it thru the post office. I sent my first coins in for grading & certification to ANACS. It is very easy to do. Just click on the link and all you need to know about doing this is on their website. It is one of the most reputable coin graders around and anybody to send a coin in. Nothing to join, just do it. I used ANACS and ICG and was completely satisfied.


 

Your coin looks very nice for a detector find. By sending it in, you run the risk of it coming back ungraded, but in a holder that says “genuine, environmental damage”. It still might be worth doing due to the rarity. I only buy graded coins, but yours is nice enough and rare enough I think it would sell in a holder ungraded. As far as shipping coins, I have bought several thousand dollars worth of coins. All shipped through USPS. I’ve never lost one or had a problem. You can always send it registered if you’re worried. No one dares mess with registered mail.
I'm definitely new to all of this, why would they not grade it?
 

I'm definitely new to all of this, why would they not grade it?
If the grading company determines that the coin has been damaged, cleaned, altered, something like that, they will slab it but not give it a numerical grade. They may something like genuine G details cleaned.
 

Another way of sending it in is if you have a friendly dealer that you use frequently, they may let you send it with their next shipment and you just pay them the fee, which will likely be lower than if you sent it in yourself.
I agree that it will likely come back as "not gradable" due to environmental damage. It depends on if there are any light (or not) scratches that indicated it has been buried. You should still get a details grade (G, VG, etc. without a number) and a genuine indicator, which still means a lot.

Scott
 

Another way of sending it in is if you have a friendly dealer that you use frequently, they may let you send it with their next shipment and you just pay them the fee, which will likely be lower than if you sent it in yourself.
I agree that it will likely come back as "not gradable" due to environmental damage. It depends on if there are any light (or not) scratches that indicated it has been buried. You should still get a details grade (G, VG, etc. without a number) and a genuine indicator, which still means a lot.

Scott
Oh, ok. It did come out very nice for being in the ground for so long. I never cleaned it, I keep a spray bottle of water with me to spray silvers with so no unnecessary scratching. Thanks to all for the advice.
 

IMO, PCGS is the #1 grading service with NGC being 2nd and ANACS 3rd. Most of the others I've seen produce way overgraded coins. PCGS just seems to be the most accurate.
 

C
IMO, PCGS is the #1 grading service with NGC being 2nd and ANACS 3rd. Most of the others I've seen produce way overgraded coins. PCGS just seems to be the most accurate.
CAC is another grading service. Previously, they just looked at PCGS and NGC slabs and put their green bean sticker on them. Now, they are actually grading and putting coins in their own slabs. If you think PCGS is picky, these guys are even more so.
 

PCGS is the number one grading service, but unless you are a member, you will have to find a coin shop to submit it for you. Because you cleaned it, it may come back in a "body bag" and they will not certify it for you. Just a number of months back, I found an 1855 O Seated Liberty Half dime (600,000) minted, that I thought I would send in because of the low mintage. Owners of 2 different coin shops discouraged me from doing so and just told me it would be best to put it in a 2x2 holder and enjoy it that way. The coin was even in decent condition. As always, it belongs to you, and your opinion / choice is the only one that matters.
 

PCGS is the number one grading service, but unless you are a member, you will have to find a coin shop to submit it for you. Because you cleaned it, it may come back in a "body bag" and they will not certify it for you. Just a number of months back, I found an 1855 O Seated Liberty Half dime (600,000) minted, that I thought I would send in because of the low mintage. Owners of 2 different coin shops discouraged me from doing so and just told me it would be best to put it in a 2x2 holder and enjoy it that way. The coin was even in decent condition. As always, it belongs to you, and your opinion / choice is the only one that matters.
I never actually cleaned the coin, only sprayed water on it to get the dirt off and then I just left it dry. Never rubbed it, or cleaned it.
 

It could still come back without a grade due to environmental damage or cleaning in their opinion. If the price isn't too steep, I think I'd probably get it slabbed and declared genuine should I decide to sell it. Even in AG it has quite a bit of value.
 

The Good thing about ANACS is even if it's a details coin (cleaned, env. damage, bent...w/e) they will still give it a numerical grade...like this one I sent to them, just for this reason.....if there's no pits in your coin I think you'll be ok....probably an AG3 or G4....17167751603839079835306071195517.jpg
 

I used PCGS. A little more, but they SEEM to have a better reputation than some others and higher resale value. Just send it priority mail and INSURE IT.
 

In my experience, budget about $100 for the whole process. This includes buying a membership to the grading service (they required this when I did it), the grading fee, shipping, and insurance. Any carrier could lose your coin; that's life. Can't avoid that risk. If you think one carrier is worse, use a different one. They won't let you physically visit the facility to drop it off, so a carrier is necessary.

I think "genuine, ungradable", if it comes back like that, is better than nothing. More likely, looking at your pic, it will come back with a number, details - environmental damage. Depending what kind of dirt it was in, if they get it under the scope and don't see scratches, it may come back with just a number. Unlikely for dug silver unless dug from smooth dirt or something, and there is no sodium or arsenic in the dirt (both do environmental damage to silver). All the dirt around here has rocks to micro rock, so its hard to come out unscratched.,

In the end, it depends what you want to do with it and what you think it is worth. I don't know what the coin is worth, but if the grading costs are no big deal relative to what you think the coin is worth, you can always bust it out of the slab (don't do this without googling how to) if you don't like what came back.

I have the same dilemma with a chain cent I dug a few years back, Its pretty toasted, but identifiable. I'd be happy if it came back "genuine ungradable", "details cleaned", or "details environmental damage", as it is estimated that only about 1000 or so of these exist (original mintage only about 12K).

Good luck. Let us know what you decided and the outcome
 

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