The Silver Half Dollar's Blog

11 Jul 2017

A Book Review of the Cherrypickers’ Guide to Rare Die Varieties of United States Coins Fifth Edition Volume 1

Young Numismatists Exchange | The Silver Half Dollar

A Book Review of the Cherrypickers’ Guide to Rare Die Varieties of United States Coins

Fifth Edition Volume 1


This book is written by Bill Fivaz, J.T. Stanton, and contains a foreword written by Q David Bowers. Volume 1 shows errors from half cents to nickels.  It describes The Fivaz-Stanton Numbering System for errors and varieties and what everything means. It also talks about the rarity scale, the Sheldon Scale, and Q David Bower’s Universal Rarity Scale. It talks about interest factor (demand) and liquidity factor (how sellable). It talks about CONECA’s original RPM (repunched mintmark), and OMM (over mint mark).It describes the doubled die listing numbers also. It talks about other Identification numbers: Breen, F (Fletcher), FF, L, Leone, S (Rick Snow), VAM (Van Allen Mallis), and WB ( Wiley Bugert). It shows average die life which is:    Lincoln Cent: 1,400,000

                                                 Jefferson Nickel: 200,000

                                                 Roosevelt Dime:   300,000 (400,000 for Denver, 230,000 for Philadelphia)

                                                  Washington Quarter: 752,000

                                                   Statehood Quarter: 275,000

                                                   Kennedy Half: 160,000

                                                   Sacagawea Dollar: 250,000

(This is related to errors and varieties because sometimes, they are accidently caused because of a worn die).

This large book provides pictures and descriptions of most errors and varieties (half cent to nickel). It talks about Doubled Dies, Strike Doubling, and other forms of doubling. Some examples are Die Fatigue, Die Polish, and Longrace Doubling. It contains a Die Doubling I.Q. Test. It explains the minting and die making process which can cause errors or varieties. It talks about the best magnifiers which are useful to find errors or varieties. It has a list of popular errors from proof and mint sets. It talks about Cherrypicking (not picking cherries, it is finding error coins at a dealer). Use respect when Cherrypicking – be humble when dealing with dealers! It talks about the 1979 and 1981 San Francisco Proof Mintmark Varieties.  It also gives some recommended reading on errors and varieties. It lists clubs like CONECA  (Combined Organization of Numismatic Error Collectors of America) to help you learn. It gives tips on safely mailing coins. It also talks about insured mail. It talks about the most secure way of mailing numismatic merchandise. This book is published by Whitman Publishing. It is $40 in the United States and $47 in Canada. This is a great numismatic book on errors and varieties that every numismatist who collects errors or varieties must own. To learn more about errors and varieties you can join CONECA. This wonderful numismatic reference book is worth every doubled died cent.



The Cherrypickers Guide to Rare Die Varieties of United States Coins, Fifth Edition Volume I Half Cents to Nickels.

By: Bill Fivaz, J.T. Stanton, and containing a foreword written by Q David Bowers



Level 6

I have this and it is a must for roll searching! Thanks for this info!


Level 7

Just to let you know I picked up volume two it's great. Mike


Level 4

good blog! I'll have to find it at my library! Sounds very good.


Level 6

Great blog. These 2 books are must haves for roll and change searchers. Thanks!!


Level 5

Cherrypicker' s Guide, volume 1 &2 are"pay for themselves books."


Level 6

I am so encouraged to buy this book. Great info for anyone who checks their change! Thanks.

Conan Barbarian

Level 5

it sounds like a good book i should get me it someday


Level 7

I have been waiting for volume two dimes and up. It should be out soon. I don't know what the holdup could be. Thanks for the info. Mike.

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