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  • Mint Error vs Variation

    When does a 'Mint error' stop being a 'Mint Error' and becomes a different variation of the coin?

    For instance if someone finds a Mickey Mouse coin with one ear, is it a Mint Error or a new variation? If someone else finds another one, does it then stop being a Mint error and starts being a second variation?

    What is the 'threshold' quantity if there is one? For instance, if you take the 'tagged ear' R1 Springbok, if only one was known to exist would it just be another Mint Error?

    Is there a fundamental difference between a Mint Error and a different variation? Or is it just a matter of numbers?
    Items I am selling.

  • #2
    I'm not sure about this description:

    Graded Coins - **CRAZY R1 START** 1994 INNAUGURATION R5 COIN AU58 MEDALLIC ALIGNMENT- WOW ONE OF A KIND!!!! for sale in Pretoria / Tshwane (ID:27326838)

    Is this suppose to be an error? I thought all our modern coins were medal struck.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by PBGold View Post
      When does a 'Mint error' stop being a 'Mint Error' and becomes a different variation of the coin?

      For instance if someone finds a Mickey Mouse coin with one ear, is it a Mint Error or a new variation? If someone else finds another one, does it then stop being a Mint error and starts being a second variation?

      What is the 'threshold' quantity if there is one? For instance, if you take the 'tagged ear' R1 Springbok, if only one was known to exist would it just be another Mint Error?

      Is there a fundamental difference between a Mint Error and a different variation? Or is it just a matter of numbers?

      The simplest way to differentiate between mint errors and varieties. "They are two different things" as I collect Varieties but not Error Coins.

      Varieties are coins that can be traced to a specific set of dies from which it was struck. In SA Coinage most varieties can be found in the Union Series where dies required hand punching of dates and letters, numerals and other small features. The result would be a variety from each die set.

      More recent coins that falls under varieties would be the Tagged Ear R1-00 as a variety and so also the Pregnant Springbok. However if there was only one "Tagged Ear" coin in existence one would have tried to establish the reason for this "Error" such as a brokage or perhaps a doubled die etc, would then have been classified as an error.

      Errors are caused during the minting process and unless you have a fair idea of the process of coin minting difficult to identify as errors or varieties.
      Light travels faster than sound. That's why some people appear bright until you hear them speak!

      Click to view any items I may have on auction

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      • #4
        Ok, let us see what the thoughts are on this example of the 2010 Proof 10c (from the 2010 Proof coin set)

        Unfortunately, my photography skills aren't that good, so hopefully this is clear enough.

        On the left the 'bottom right' Lily seems to be 'open', and on the right it seems to be 'closed'. (This reminds me of the Railway 1/10 Oz 1995 with its door and window.)

        Mint Error, or are there two variations of the 2010 Proof 10c?

        Items I am selling.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by PBGold View Post
          Ok, let us see what the thoughts are on this example of the 2010 Proof 10c (from the 2010 Proof coin set)

          Unfortunately, my photography skills aren't that good, so hopefully this is clear enough.

          On the left the 'bottom right' Lily seems to be 'open', and on the right it seems to be 'closed'. (This reminds me of the Railway 1/10 Oz 1995 with its door and window.)

          Mint Error, or are there two variations of the 2010 Proof 10c?

          In order to identify the "problem" or "variety" Much larger and photos in focus is needed. I will PM you with my contact details if you want to sent larger pictures.

          I suspect this could be a variety rather than an error. Sometimes in the final process of sinking the dies "From the matrix, dies are punched" the dies receive a slightly different impression from the matrix which could result in what we've seen in the mentioned 95 1/10th Ounce coin with it's open and closed windows and doors. However it can only be called a variety if there is more than one set of dies made for these proof coins. I'll leave it to you to contact the mint and ask for this information.

          You can also confirm a variety by finding more of these coins. Errors are usually limited to a small limited qty. that slips through on quality control in the modern minting process and often such errors are mistakenly qualified as varieties.

          In South Africa, collecting varieties has never actually taken off and even dealers that has been in the business for many years have no idea of what varieties exist in which denominations and years and mention is only made of a small amount in the catalogues available. I know of only one other collector that currently still owns a large number of varieties and between the two of us we've identified a good 500 to 600 in the Union Series alone.

          I recently discovered that the very difficult and valuable 1925 2/6 has at least three very prominent varieties.
          Light travels faster than sound. That's why some people appear bright until you hear them speak!

          Click to view any items I may have on auction

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          • #6
            Thanks for the informative answer.

            I am currently looking for more. I am hesitant to contact the Mint.

            It would be better for me to talk to a brick wall I am afraid. It is very frustrating dealing with them on matters of this type.
            Items I am selling.

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            • #7
              Errors are usually limited to a small limited qty. that slips through on quality control in the modern minting process and often such errors are mistakenly qualified as varieties
              Here is one that missed quality control
              err3..JPG err1..JPG err 2..JPG

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              • #8
                I have found another one of the 'open' type. The two appear to be identical. Of course, I cannot look at the 3000 that could potentially be minted.
                Items I am selling.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by w1007 View Post
                  Here is one that missed quality control
                  [ATTACH=CONFIG]794[/ATTACH] [ATTACH=CONFIG]795[/ATTACH] [ATTACH=CONFIG]796[/ATTACH]

                  I would strongly deny this coin the status of an error coin. From the pictures it is clear that the nip was made after the minting process, perhaps by some sort of hydraulic punch. The indentation on one side and the flair of the metal on the other is a dead give-away. Definitely not an error.

                  Thanks for sharing.
                  Light travels faster than sound. That's why some people appear bright until you hear them speak!

                  Click to view any items I may have on auction

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by PBGold View Post
                    I have found another one of the 'open' type. The two appear to be identical. Of course, I cannot look at the 3000 that could potentially be minted.
                    You are well on your way of identifying the first variety in the 2010 minting year. Good Luck and keep us informed.
                    Light travels faster than sound. That's why some people appear bright until you hear them speak!

                    Click to view any items I may have on auction

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                    • #11
                      Thanks.

                      At the moment I have no doubt that there are two distinct variations of this coin.
                      Items I am selling.

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                      • #12
                        Thank you for the feedback.Inspecting the coin there apears to be a seam inside the cut away.Unfortunately the photos do not show it to clearly.Perhaps when I am next in Jhb I could get it to you to have a look at.

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                        • #13


                          Bit better quality, no idea of the ratio of open to closed though.
                          Items I am selling.

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