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WORLDWIDE Chapter 149 Message Board Forum Index » Pocket Watch Discussions » Forget the price guide and star ratings which are baseless
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Forget the price guide and star ratings which are baseless
PostPosted: Sun Mar 05, 2017 1:36 pm Reply with quote
Jon
Chapter President
Joined: 02 Dec 2002
Posts: 25301
Location: Boston, Ma




The Sheldon scale

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In the 1930s Dr. William H. Sheldon devised a "scale for rarity" used universely in American numismatics. It was published in "Early American Cents", 1949, as follows:

R-1 common
R-2 not so common
R-3 scarce
R-4 very scarce (population estimated at 76-200)
R-5 rare (31-75)
R-6 very rare (13-30)
R-7 extremely rare (4-12)
R-8 unique or nearly unique (1,2 or 3)

When collecting die varities of early American coppers (half cents, large cents, Mass. silver, colonial state coinage, Washington coins and medals, Betts medals, etc.) it is imparative to know the rarity for evaluation. Next of importance is the condition. Dr. Shelson also devised a condition census of the top 6 examples known. (now updated to 8 or 10 by current collectors.) Massive records have been kept for years, updated when new discoveries are found, or grading proven to be incorrect. (I did this for nearly 30 years-the condition census for US half cents, published in the early 1980s.)

I have been recording serial numbers of rare American watches for over 50 years (basically for my own use, although I have dozens and dozens of individuals ask me ratings weekly). Watches are easier to keep track of due to their serial numbers; however, recasing, redialing, cosmetic improving, sandpapering, regilding, polishing, re-engraving, switching, etc., etc., makes this task much more difficult due to the "switching" and "changing" by collectors and dealers alike who care more about appearance and profit that originality, correctness, and historical significance.

For rarer movement issues this scale works well.

Yes, of course, one has to rely on correct, accurate serial number recordings.

_________________
Jon "the truth" Hanson
Founder and President of Chapter 149--the leading horological collectors' club!
American Horologe Co -- America's Most Respected Name
SUPPORT ETHICAL PRACTICES IN HOROLOGY--Keep watches original--DO NOT SWITCH, PART OUT OR "CREATE" PW abortions!
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Forget the price guide and star ratings which are baseless
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