This is a 2-part blog post on counterfeit 3cS’s.
First, in May 2023 a new variety of hand-made, die struck counterfeit 1852 3cS was documented; this is 1 of 15 currently unique hand-made, die struck 3cS counterfeit varieties (and I want more of these to be found/reported). This variety is given the designation of Z2-AH. This is the 3rd confirmed 1852-dated hand-made die struck counterfeit 3cS variety, it is the 40th such variety overall, along with the 7 transfer die varieties. This variety is a singleton and thus a new obverse and reverse die.
Overall die workmanship on this 1852 Z2-AH, when viewed in hand and at its small size, is decent with the appearance of an average worn genuine 3cS, and a piece that seems to have circulated for a fair amount of time. However, to the eagle-eyed viewer, especially considering the small size of these coins overall, the die work is obviously different from the genuine counterpart. The date has what appears to be a repunched 1, the 5 is completely filled, and the 2 is noticeably larger than the 185. The peripheral lettering is of comparable size to the genuine, but several letters are repunched. Those repunched letters include N1, I1, and T2, with several other letters having their internal spaces filled. On the reverse there are 14 stars around the periphery instead of the normal 13. Several stars are also noticeably and subtly repunched. The notably repunched stars are S6, S9, and S10. The roman numeral III in the center also appears repunched.
In sum, I’m surprised this variety was not documented sooner. To me, it seems like many examples could have been minted and circulated without causing much attention, and thus should have a fair survival rate. But alas, such is not the case, and potentially this variety was not minted in any great amount and/or few actually circulated. In any event, I hope you all keep hunting for this variety and we add more examples to the census. Congrats to the new owner.
Second, I have a participation question for you all. I want to bring your attention to a particularly 'nice' example of NDR Z1-U (shown here) with an unusually clear date area. Do you see a clear enough date? If so, please comment here with what date you see. And if not, please comment if you are still indecisive. If there is enough of a consensus, I'm openly willing to change this variety designation from ‘NDR’ to an actual date - and that would be exciting (at least for me). Thanks for your participation here.