I added NO coins this year that would improve this set. I did replace a few coins with ones that
have more eye appeal. I still buy beautiful halves in lower grades that don't improve the set.
2016 CAC Complete Set
I have had a complete set for about two years. I was going to post it last year but choose not to in order to allow Pete Shireman to be on top for his fifth year. 2016 was a good year for Barbers in that Shireman, Greensboro and other nice examples were available for purchase.
I was able to buy many coins but also had to pass on others that I liked due to price.
I could easily have surpassed Mr. Duckor if I would buy non CAC coins. However a top set of all time needs to have every or at least the majority of coins strong for the grade. While Duckor had amazing coins, twenty of them were not CAC. I believe Mr. Duckor changed his thinking in that his latest top set of early Walkers seem to be all CAC!
There are many Barber Halves in the top grades that there are NO CAC examples of. Therefore I am stuck and cannot easily improve.
I also passed on certain coins due to value. For example, the beautiful 1896-O in MS67. It sold for 88K. My 66+ is a gem at 44K. I did not feel that double the price was worth it just for the points.
I have been critical of the top pop bonus scoring which I find absurd. The total score of the coins is what should determine a top set and not how many top pops someone can buy. Top pop scoring needs to be eliminated as it stops some competition and is against the spirit of building sets.
I also like to give praise. I applaud PCGS in keeping the highest pops correct for the Barber half series. They have resisted upgrading Barbers and therefore creating more top pops. It is hard to believe, but there are twenty two Barber Halves with a pop of one in 67 or 67+ with none higher. This is amazing. It appears that PCGS will not allow the crack out dealers to get 67 upgrades in this series. Good work PCGS!
Lastly, I believe the prices for many Barbers as well as other series are inaccurate. Most coins trade based on what others sold for. However PCGS now has
data for around 30 years of the true pops of every coin and its date. Example: The iconic 1904-S in 67 is a Pop 3. There are 22 other 67's that are Pop 1 and therefore much rarer in the top
grade(s). Why should an 04-S sell for about 100K and these other 22 coins substantially less when they are actually MUCH rarer? They should NOT!
As noted, prices are usually based on what a previous coin sold for and not its true rarity.
Can pricing be changed? Probably! If PCGS adjusted the scoring on all sets based on the true rarity of the coins, then prices would slowly change as registry buyers would need or need other coins as much or more than the current keys. Once done, the rarity and score would change based on any new coins being found or upgraded. EX: A pop 1 becomes a pop 3. It score would be automatically lowered.
I would be happy to help with massive scoring changes across all sets!