As much as I look forward to all the articles in each new issue, I wanted to let you know that Thomas M. Buckley’s article “A Guide to Buying Silver and Gold” (issue 126) was especially helpful to me. I had bought a little bit of bullion years ago at a coin shop, but didn’t really know what I was doing. I’m sure I paid a good premium. Mr. Buckley’s descriptions of the different forms of the metals helped me decide what I was looking for, and how to make sure I was getting a good deal.
I was able to put this knowledge to good use within a couple of weekends when I went to a flea market. The two dealers I remember were from both extremes of what the article described. The first table was flashy with lots of jewelry and coins and brightly lit, the dealer really hustling to work several customers at his table. I figured this guy must really move a lot of product, and that there was some good reason. When I got his attention, I asked “What do you get on a dollar face of U.S. ‘junk’ coins?” He said, “I don’t have any junk. Mine’s all American.” So I pointed to the shoe box brimming with pre-’64 quarters and dimes in the last corner of his display case and made further inquiry, and he turned and walked away. After a few more minutes of being ignored, I moved on.
The next dealer I noticed was an older gentleman with a much smaller display with no jewelry, only coins, bullion, and collectible paper currency of an amazing variety given the space. His answer- “I get 20 times face.” Melt value was $21.09! Knowing what I wanted and what to expect made all the difference that day, as I am sure it will again in the future.
Just sign me,