NGC Registry Updated NGC Registry

MORGAN'S MIRRORS


Category: Dollars
Set Type: Morgan Dollars, 1878-1921, PL and DPL Only
Owner: YNZR 1
Last Modified: 6/7/2019
Views: 822
Filter Rankings: All Coins |  NGC Coins

Rank: 15
Score: 39789
Leading by: 8101
Points to Higher Rank: 8589
Set Listing   Gallery   Slideshow       History  

Set Description:

Frosted devices and mirrored fields make these Morgans stand out in the crowd. Simply beautiful!!

Identification and Diagnostics of DPL and PL Morgan Dollars:

Morgan Dollar Working Dies were "basined" before striking planchets, and in this process the working die was placed in a zinc receptacle full of fine grit. The longer the die was in this receptacle the more mirror finished it became. The process also included machining the die face to a slight concavity while applying a very fine polish. Sometimes these basined dies were buffed afterwards resulting in an even deeper mirror. This resulted in many Morgan dollars obtaining a DPL or PL appearance. A Deep Mirrored coin will show raised "striations" in the fields from when the metal was stretched or thinned to obtain the proper thickness.
These striations must not impede the reflectivity in the fields for a Morgan to be DPL, but most were polished off during the basining process for the mirror fields to be the deepest. PL coins are also struck by overly basined working dies, but not for as long as a die that produces a DPL Morgan. It also must be noted that the "cartwheel" effect in a Morgan Dollar's fields are caused by the aforementioned striations on the die before it strikes the planchet. So, the less die striations, the smoother the die surface, and the more mirrored the fields of a struck Morgan becomes. The more stiations on a dies surface causes more disotion in the reflectivity of a Morgan Dollar's fields and this is why a true DPL will have deep mirrors without distortion at a certain distance, and why a PL mirror will have some distortion and less depth in the mirrored fields.
Reflectivity in the fields is the key to deignation between DPL and PL. Usually 2 to 5 inches of reflection before distortion occurs will place a coin in the PL range. A true DPL should have at least 6 inches of an undistorted reflection. There is also an Ultra-DMPL designation that can only be found in ANACS slabs. These Ultra's have a mirror depth of 12 inches. These are incredibly rare, if you can find one at a good price it would behoove one to purchase it. Although these parameters can be subjective the number of inches of mirror depth is the key in differentiating between a DPL and a PL. So get a ruler and get to work. There are alot of Morgans out there but when I saw my first DPL I knew this was a set that would stand out amongst other slabbed Morgans. These truely are "first strikes" in the sense that their definition implies. The effect of the the mirrors would diminish after just a few thousand strikes. Then the coin would just become a "regular" Morgan. The population reports seem to concur that the PL coins are in the 5% or less range. Whereas DPL's are in the thousandths of per cent of the TOTAL pops. This is a truly amazing statistic These strikes with their frost and mirrors are in my humble opinion the most beautiful in the Morgan series. Get one yourself and you'll be hooked.

I personally think it is imperative to acquire coins for this kind of set that have already been graded by a reputable service, preferably NGC or PCGS so they can naturally be entered for NGC's Registry. There are alot of supposed DPL's and PL's available that have been polished or otherwise. After you have gotten yourself some slabbed Morgans(DPL&PL) in different grades. Your eye, proper lighting and a 6 inch ruler should be enough to get you started. You should be able to discern the difference between a true DPL and PL and those that just pretend to be after some practice and patience. If you buy raw, or slabbed by a company you never heard of, be sure and beware! An ANA member dealer with a good reputation and who travels to major shows is also a good bet. They can have access to be able too fill a "want list" on some of the tougher dates. Well happy hunting in the land of deep mirrors!
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