A Cleaned Early U.S. Half Dollar

The 1806 Draped Bust Half Dollar shown here was sold by a major national coin firm to one of our customers.  It was sold as a Fine-12, and while it is correctly graded technically, the coin was harshly cleaned at some point in the past.  The fact that it was cleaned was not mentioned when the coin was sold.  You may think that this should be obvious, but some collectors cannot tellOthers are so used to receiving coins like this from many mail order dealers, that they consider this a normal appearance!

It is also common for coins like this to be "Net" graded - in other words, a cleaned coin like this might be sold as a "VG" rather than a Fine. Some collectors will receive these coins and think that they are getting a bargain - the truth is that when sold back to a dealer in future, these damaged coins will bring far less than the value of a problem free example that really is a Fine, and in many if not most cases, they will be worth less than a Good as well.  The reality is that dealers do not want these type of coins back, as they are harder to sell generally, except to the novice or the uneducated collector.