Erstabschlag meens " early strike " or " first strike " and in the period we are discussing usually refers to the first 100 - 150 specimens struck with fresh dies. In my experience an earlystrike might look like a proof at first glance, but at clother examination it becomes visible that the early strike is lacking the deep mirroring and the somewhat " thicker " look of the relief. I know this sounds a bit weird and it is definetly not easy to pack such a visual impression into words. Perhaps the following illustrations may explain what I mean:Togol hat geschrieben:Okay, now to clarify the diagnostic criteria for PP coins of the period – and relate to the minting process shared previously:Mynter hat geschrieben:How the minting was done : http://www.retrobibliothek.de/retrobib/ ... ?id=111608
(Let me know if I've missed some criteria)
- mirror fields - regular planchets (after pickling to remove oxides, washing, and drying) were hand selected and polished (with chemical?). The dies are suspected to have also been extra-polished for the task.
- fully-formed (squared) and sharp rims - the stamping was done multiple times? And/or at greater force?
- fully-formed or sharp edge reeding (straight notches) - stamping was done multiple times within a pre-ring (collar)? And/or at greater force?
- greater detail in areas of relief (portrait, letters, dots) - stamping was done multiple times? And/or at greater force?
The J-108 example shared previously in this thread really portrays these differences nicely!
What’s caught my attention is the possibility that “the proof-effect” might carry over to business strikes. I’m guessing the most likely “proof-effect” to carry over would be the mirror fields, the extra-polished dies being then used to stamp regular planchets.
Would such coins be accounted for with the German grading term Erstabschlag? Or is Spiegelglanz more appropriate here?
Additionally, I’d assume even with the minting of business strikes the dies would require routine polishing? Could we then assume the business strikes made following die maintenance would also result in a “proof-effect”?
J 177a Early Strike: J 177a Proof ( At J 177 the advers always comes matted, so I leave that out )
When a proofdie is used for striking coins for business, I would expect the mirrored fields to turn more and more blind, because the dies would not recive any special care other than cleaning them now and then if they became to oily or planchets got stuck. I hope the effect of such a die being used up in massproduction is visuabel on this revers of a Bayern- 3 Mark ( J 47 ): In such a processs of massproduction it would be exiting to compare speciems struck with relativly fresh proofdies to those who are, lets say another 200.000 strikes later in the productionrun. My hypotesis is that the latest struck specimens would be just a little more shiny than business- strikes, perhaps a bit like as an earlystrike. So if the whole lot of the New- Guinea- 5 - Mark should have been produced with one pair of dies only and this diepair be a diepair originally prepared for mintig proofs, I would expect those coins to have a somewhat more shinier finish than coins struck with ordinary dies.