Numism > For the New Ancient Coin Collector

Common Mistakes for Beginners

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david z:
Hi All,

I am a novice collector/cleaner with only 3 months experience and have already learnt some valuable lessons.

1. Stay away from Descale - I purchased a lot of uncleaned imperials which were very encrusted and was recommended descale for a rapid clean. Ended up ruining the coins.

2. Careful when buying cheap lots from ebay. Most of them are Constantine's and Licinius's.

That's my 2 cents. Still learning a lot from these discussions and just happy to be involved!


Re your #2.

There is nothing wrong with coins of Constantine and Licinius.  Even in very high quality late Roman lots you will get mainly coins of them and their families plus the Valentinian gang.  Many can be very beautiful, some are rare, all have historical interest.  The real reason to avoid cheap ebay lots is that you will get poor quality coins.


Enes Korkmaz:
I think you're right. I've had the same thing.

Harry G:
What I did, which I do not reccommend doing, is buying a bulk lot of uncleaned roman coins on eBay and trying to clean them with no knowledge of how to clean them. After soaking them in distilled water, oil and even pure lemon juice (with no luck), I resorted to electrolysis. I zapped one of the coins, and, instead of turning into a beuatiful coin with the patina intact, I was left with a flat (but very shiny) disk! I do not recommend doing that unless you know exactly what you're doing! I think I'll just bury them in the garden or something!

Joe Sermarini:
Maybe shop at FORVM instead? 


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