What is a Type Set Collection

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Written By Natasha Jones
I'm Natasha Jones, an avid collector of coins, stamps, and paper money. My passion drives me to seek unique finds, from antique shops to international exchanges. I enjoy connecting with fellow collectors through forums and meet-ups, sharing discoveries and insights. Collecting, for me, is about preserving history and building a community around this shared interest.

What is a type set collection? Type set coins can be a lot of fun and help you determine which series or type of coins you enjoy the most and may want to collect in the future. Currently, I’m working on a type set of PCGS-graded coins.

Luckily, there are plenty of various types of sets to work with. As a beginning collector, you might feel overwhelmed and confused and find a type set expensive.

However, there are several ways to collect a type set that can cater to your interests, budget, and knowledge base.

What is a Type Set Collection?

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“What is a type set?” would be the first obvious question. So, a type set is a collection of coins where the collector has one example of each different series of coins.

Well, you see, a type set is quite distinct from a conventional set. In a conventional set, the collector would typically select a specific series and gather all the dates, mintmarks, and other relevant information for that series.

For instance, they might assemble a collection of Morgan Silver Dollars, Draped Bust Large Cents, or Franklin Half Dollars. I understand that having a complete set of a particular series can be enjoyable and exciting.

However, not everyone, particularly those new to coin collecting, may not have a clear idea of their preferred coin series.

Additionally, some people may simply want to avoid monotony and prefer to have a variety of coin designs in their collections. I’m working on a type set because I like so many coins that it’s hard to choose just one to collect.

Plus, I don’t want to limit myself to only one type of coin and prefer to have a variety. I am most interested in Early American Copper.

So, I put more effort and money into those coins in my type set over some that I don’t like as much. I like every coin I own, though.

Is it Challenging to Collect Type Set Collection?

Type sets pose unique challenges that are specific to them.

To create a complete set of Barber Quarters with mintmarks, you’ll have to acquire extensive knowledge about the series and become an expert on it.

You must learn even more as a type set collector because type sets include all different series.

You must remember that a collector specializing in type sets may not possess the same knowledge about Barber Quarters as a dedicated Barber Quarter collector.

However, they are likely to have a greater understanding of Three-Cent Pieces than the Barber above Quarter collector. It’s important to learn about the coin before investing in it.

This applies to type sets as well. You’ll learn a lot about different types of coins, which can be a fun and exciting experience.

Examples of Type Set Collection

Shield Nickel (1866-1883)

The shield nickel coin is made of 25% nickel and 75% copper. There are two types of this coin, and they were simultaneously circulated.

This was the first version; rays can be seen on the coin’s reverse side between the stars surrounding the five at the center.

None of the dates on this coin is particularly rare, except the 1867 Rays Proof coin, because it can be elusive.

Another variety of the shield nickel is the shield nickel without rays; the only difference between the two is that the reverse side of this coin does not show any rays surrounding the five.

Due to problems in the striking process, the Mint removed the rays completely in mid-1867 due to inconsistent strikes and many die cracks.

Liberty Head Nickel (1883-1913)

The 1883 Liberty Head Nickel without “Cents” can be your type of set collection. It also has two varieties, the Liberty Head Nickel without Cents and the one with cents.

This particular coin was the earliest version to be released by the Mint, but other people took advantage of it and passed it on as five dollars.

Hence, the Mint corrected this error and put the word “cents” in it to avoid confusion.

Buffalo Nickel (1913-1938)

The Buffalo Nickel is also one of collectors’ most sought-after type sets. It depicts a portrait of a Native Indian and a bison or a buffalo on the reverse side.

These coins are scarce but not rare. There are also two variations of this coin, the raised ground and the flat ground.

If you’re looking for something unique and exciting, this set collection is for you!

Jefferson Nickel (1938-Present)

One of the most common types of coin sets you can find. The Jefferson Nickel coin has many variations, from the original design (1938-1964), the original design modern (1965-2003), silver alloy (1942-1945), Westward Journey (2004-2005), and the Return to Monticello (2006 to Date).

With many variations and a lot of history, this type of set collection is worthy of collecting, especially if you’re a beginner starting your coin-collecting journey!

Takeaway Tips:

  • Make sure you have a checklist so you know and keep track of what coins you have and will need.
  • Before you begin, it’s important to consider your budget to select a set that will bring you joy and fit within your budget. You wouldn’t want to plan for an extravagant set and realize it would cost too much money.
  • You don’t have to do it this way, but a good way to start is, to begin with a specific denomination like dimes or half dollars and then build upon that.
  • I suggest starting collecting rarer coins first! You might be tempted to begin with the inexpensive modern coins, but I suggest starting with the pricier ones. Well, you don’t necessarily have to begin with the priciest coin and work your way down, but typically, the higher the cost of the coin, the more it tends to increase in value within a similar timeframe.

Before you go…

I hope this article helped you answer your questions regarding type-set collections. There are many type set collections out there, and it’s up to you what you want to collect if you’re starting your journey into coin collecting—research before buying a type set collection. And remember that coin collecting should be fun, so don’t forget to enjoy your journey!

Check out my next article: “What Are The Easiest Coin Sets To Complete?

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