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August, 2003
Year 10, Issue 7

Award Winning Newsletter

Meeting 7:30pm, Wednesday, August, 6
Talk and trading 7:00-7:30pm
VFW, 1601 Weld Road, Elgin, IL

Not a member? Come and join us anyway!

Give your spouse a break and bring your children to the club.

August Program

Other hobbies night. Bring in and share with your other members, other hobbies you have besides coin collecting. Does not have to be something you collect.


July Minutes

ECC Meeting 544 - July 2, 2003
Opened:   7:31     Closed:   8:21
Members:   21     YNs:   0
Guests:   1         
Beginning balance:   $753.18     Income:   $72.00
Expenses:   $0.00     Current balance:   $825.18

Vice-President Jim Davis called the meeting to order at 7:31.

We welcome our one guest David V, voted for the ANA elections, welcomed Marty back from his surgery, were shocked by the news that our member and bartender at the club Bruce Riley had passed away the week prior to our meeting, had show and tell and proceeded to start trading with our other members.

Secretary's Report

Excepted as printed in July's newsletter.

Treasurer's Report

Balance: $825.18.

Old Business

Current standings in our coin contest are:

  1. Jim C. - $28,700
  2. Steve H. - $28,087
  3. Mike M. - $26,550

New Business



We had our customary raffle and membership drawings. The winners were:

The meeting closed around 8:21 P.M.

Submitted by Frank Schlapinski, Secretary.

Board Meeting

Mike, Jim, Don, Doug and I got together at Don's Wednesday night at 7pm March July 16. Among other things we discussed the following.

We decided on membership, YN and raffle prizes for this month's meeting. We talked about Mike's trip and found out that Harry Westlake long time member of the Elgin Coin club passed away on Saturday July 12th.

Submitted by Frank Schlapinski, Secretary.

Future Meeting Programs

Show and Tell

Easy to build sets

By Jim Davis

Ever since I started collecting coins seriously one of my main interests was assembling coins into complete sets by series. Working with a small budget I mostly concentrated on inexpensive (cheap) and easy to complete sets. Most of the sets I shall examine are readily available for purchase as complete sets. But I feel I get more satisfaction as a collector to take the time to put together a set one piece at a time. The final cost of the set may be higher than buying the set complete but I have more control on the overall quality of the set.

The sets I have found to be the easiest to assemble are the Jefferson 5 cents, Roosevelt dimes, Kennedy half dollars, Eisenhower-Susan B. Anthony-Sacagawea dollars, Silver Eagle bullion dollars, The 50 State quarter series, Lincoln memorial cents and Pre 1999 clad Washington quarters.

The Jefferson 5 cent series is a very interesting one to put together. If you are not too picky about full step reverses you can find some very nice coins very cheap. You also have the option on how complete you want to make your set. The set I'm currently working on has all the business strikes and proof issues back to 1938. Currently I need less than 20 coins to complete this set and based on current values estimate it will take me about a year to 18 months to finish. Most of the coins in this set as were most of the sets in this article were obtained from mint and proof sets. The rest were purchased at coin shows or Internet auctions.

The Roosevelt dime series is a very easy one to assemble. There are no great rarities in this series and well struck coins particularly those with full torch bands are readily available. There are a few rare varieties but they are not mandatory for a complete set. The most popular varieties are the 1982 no mint mark and the 1979 and 1981 type 2 proofs.

Kennedy half dollars are a bit more challenging. For the most part all but a few key coins are very easy to obtain. It's those few key dates that can be difficult. The hardest key is the 1998 Matte Proof. Other key coins are the 1995 and 1997 clad proofs long with all silver proofs from 1993 to 1998.

The next three sets are so closely tied together; collect them as a single set. They are the Eisenhower, Susan B. Anthony and Sacagawea dollar.

Eisenhower dollars are very common in grades up to ms-63. A clean ms-63 is still an attractive collectable coin. Once you get above ms-63 several issues can become very expensive. The few keys that do exist are the 1973 P&D and silver proof along with the 1976 type one P&D.

The only valuable coins in the Anthony series are the varieties and are not necessary for a complete set. They are the 1979 near date and the 1979 and 1981 type 2 proofs.

The Sacagawea dollar series has yet to produce a key coin. The famous mules are very expensive and are of questionable origin. There were also some Sacagawea dollars struck in gold but those cannot be legally owned by the public.

When first issued the Silver Eagle bullion dollar was meant to be traded based on the price of silver. In the years since they have evolved into a legitimate collectible. With a little searching you can put together a fine set of well struck pieces for not a lot of money. On the other hand the proof issues of these coins can be very costly. The key coin of the proof Silver Eagle series is the 1995-W which sells for over $2,000.

The most popular series of the last 5 years is the 50 State quarter series. If you got in on the ground floor by buying the mint and proof sets you are showing a nice profit. The key coins in this series are the 1999 silver proofs with the 2001 silver proofs a close second. This is one of the few exceptions of buying one at a time as these coins are usually only sold as a group. On the other hand looking for well struck business strikes may be worth the effort on the long run.

Lincoln memorial cents, with the exception of a few key dates this series has been mostly ignored. About every 10 years a variety comes up to rekindle interest but it usually fades away. The keys are the small dates of 1960, 1970 and 1982 along with the double dies of 1972, 1984, 1984 and 1995. Putting together this set even including the proof only issues won't put too big a dent in your bank account.

The Clad Quarters of 1965 to 1998 are another ignored series. Some of the early issues are starting to get harder to find in top grades but are still affordable. The only other key dates are the silver bi-centennial issues and the silver proofs of 1992 to 1998. A few years ago I saw an ad form a dealer offering full split beak quarters. So if you happen to find one in a dealer's box go ahead and grab it, who knows it may be the next big variety and NGC will recognize it.

Other sets to put together that are a little harder are the Franklin Half dollars, Peace dollars and modern (post 1981) commemoratives. Whatever set you choose to work on is up to you.

Happy hunting.

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