Numismatic Guaranty Corporation
May 2003  
1. Internship Search Has Begun, Apply Today
2. Lights, Loupe and Library
3. See you in Long Beach, May 28-June 1st
3. Consign your Details Graded Coins to Teletrade



May 28 - June 1
Long Beach Coin & Collectibles Expo
Long Beach Convention Center
Long Beach, CA

July 28-29
Baltimore Convention Center
Baltimore, MD

July 29 - Aug 3
World's Fair of Money

Baltimore Convention Center
Baltimore, MD


Internship Search Has Begun, Apply Today

The search for a numismatic intern has begun. Resumes and letters have already begun to arrive, so if you have not applied for this internship, now is the time to do it.

The NGC/NCS Numismatic Internship will allow an aspiring numismatist the opportunity to learn and work alongside the professional numismatists at NGC and NCS, developing skills in variety attribution, authentication, grading, conservation and much more. To accommodate interested aspiring numismatists, the start date and duration of the internship have yet to be decided. The internship will be held during the summer or fall of 2003 and last from 6 to 12 weeks, depending on the intern’s availability.

“We knew that this would be a very popular internship,” says Brian Silliman, NCS Assistant Director of Operations. “We are receiving lots of resumes and letters from collectors and dealers that are interested in applying and receiving the chance to work with some of the foremost professional numismatists in the hobby.”

The internship, which was announced in April, will be the most comprehensive internship in the hobby. Through intensive hands-on work and instruction in all areas of the companies’ operations, the intern should develop skills that would otherwise take years, if not decades, to acquire.

The internship will be held at NGC and NCS headquarters in Sarasota, Florida. The intern should be at least 18 years old by the start of the internship. NGC and NCS will provide lodging and a stipend as well as transportation to and from Sarasota, if needed.

To apply for this internship, candidates should send a resume and a letter, describing their numismatic background, interests and goals. This internship is geared toward gaining the skill and experience needed to be a professional numismatist.

Application materials can be sent to Certified Collectibles Group Human Resources at PO Box 4776, Sarasota, FL. 34230, by email to or by fax to 941-360-2553.

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Lights, Loupe and Library

Getting more out of your coin collecting often comes down to three things: the correct lighting, a good loupe and a suitable library of numismatic references.

A common trap for most new and intermediate collectors is getting bogged down with “expensive toys” rather than “valuable tools.” Specifically, the multitude of specialty lights, fancy high power magnifiers and expensive (and largely useless) microscopes that collectors feel they need to be more successful.

Lighting is perhaps the most important of your collecting tools — it can make or break your collecting efforts. Bad lighting will hinder your ability to see surface problems and make it difficult to grade coins accurately and consistently. But this does not mean you need to go out and buy hundreds of dollars worth of special lighting equipment. On the contrary, your ideal lighting setup can be purchased at your local office supply store for less than $50.

The recommended lighting set up for coin collecting is a simple swing-arm or similar desk lamp and a 75- to 100-watt incandescent bulb. We recommend using a name-brand soft white bulb, as generic bulbs often have a slight yellow tint. Additionally, it is a good idea to check the specifications of the lamp, as some have a very low wattage capacity.

Now that you have your light source, you need “suitable” magnification. This is often an area of confusion for collectors and the basis for one of the worst habits you can develop. Magnification is a “back-up” and should be used sparingly. You should always look at the coin with your unaided eye. Rotating it around under the light without magnification is all most people need to spot problems and accurately grade the coin. Your magnifier should only be used to get a closer look at problems you noticed during your initial examination of the coin. Grading coins with a magnifier or even worse, with a microscope, will almost guarantee that you under-grade you coins.

Even though magnification should be used sparingly you should have it available at all times. Luckily, this is not a major investment. In fact, a suitable loupe can be purchased for under $50. We recommend a 5- to 7-power triplet loupe for most applications. This range of magnification is perfect for grading, variety attribution and most authentication tasks. The triplet loupe design provides increased clarity and reduces image distortion that occurs with single or double glass magnifiers.

And finally, with your lighting and your magnifier, as well as a clean work space to view your coins, we highly recommend having a library of numismatic reference material related to the coins you collect. There is a tremendous amount of information available on virtually all types of coins, grading, attribution, varieties and counterfeit detection. Having easy access to this material is extremely important.

To better understand what books are available for your collecting interest, we recommend looking at the ANA Library Catalog. The ANA maintains one of the largest numismatic libraries in the country and if you are an ANA member you can borrow most of these books by mail. Once you have seen what books are available, we would suggest borrowing a couple and, if they are going to be of assistance to you, then try to locate the book for purchase through numismatic book dealers or internet auctions.

Most, if not all grading services, dealers and a lot of the more advanced collectors, maintain large and rather impressive libraries. But here again, don’t just buy every book available, borrow it from another collector or the ANA library, and see if the information in it is truly relevant to your collecting. If it is, then it may be a reference worth adding to your collection. A well-known saying in this hobby that still holds true today is, “buy the book before you buy the coin.”

In the coming months, NCS and NGC will post a list of very useful numismatic references on their websites at and

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Collectors Society

See you in Long Beach, May 28-June 1st

Believe it or not, its already time for another Long Beach Expo. The next Long Beach Expo will be held the last weekend in May and should prove to be a very busy show.

NCS representatives will be at the show, sharing a table with NCS’ official grading service, NGC. NCS representatives will be giving informal opinions concerning authentication and conservation as well as accepting submissions.

If you have coins you need conserved, graded and delivered to Long Beach, we offer an Expedite service. To get you coins back in time for Long Beach, we highly recommend you submit them now, as the show is quickly approaching.

For information on the other shows that NCS will be attending, visit to view our calendar.

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Consign your Details Graded Coins to Teletrade

Several weeks ago, Teletrade launched its Sunday Collector’s Auction of NCS-certified coins and it was a great success.

These NCS exclusive auctions are being held on a re-occurring basis and include coins from the famed Binion Collection.

To consign your coins to the auction visit for more information and submission forms.

Don’t let this great opportunity pass
you by.

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How do I ship my coins for conservation? Click here to find out.

Want to discuss your collection with fellow coin enthusiasts? Or do you have a question you need answered? Chat with other collectors in our online Discussion Forums.

NCS is the conservation service of choice of the ANA.

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