I have had the majority of this set for many years. It was missing one coin, the 1807 and could not find one I liked,
so I never published the set.
I always loved Bust Halves. In the early 1980's during the gold boom I owned a check cashing store that
also bought gold, silver and anything of value. It was not in a good area so we bought quantity over quality.
In the nine years I was there, I purchased around 80 bust halves. One was an AU and the rest were lower, mostly fine and very good. I saved every one for over twenty five years. I saved no other coins.
When I got into better coins I finally sold them and started buying higher grades. I own many amazing Bust Halves other than what is in this set. Many are toned AU's - 64.
Although Mr. Link has the top set, many of my coins are 10's or simply stunning. Part of his set came from the
Pogue set. Many are gems but I could not or did not want to get into a bidding war.
My set is all CAC except for one, the 1807. All the examples of the 1807 I have seen over the years were gray. dark or just plain unattractive.
As per Laura of Legend Coin, "Do not buy a coin just to fill a hole, be patient". I believe this. Sure years ago I did not adhere to it like I do now. If you don't it could be costly. When you replace a lessor coin either by grade or eye appeal you wind up losing money many times.
Sadly there is no way for PCGS to grade a set based on eye appeal. Many coins in lower grades are so much nicer than the higher graded examples. This is true with ALL sets.
I have said many times that I cannot fathom why top collectors buy many non CAC coins. CAC is well respected and has existed for ten years. When they do not pass a coin, it is because there is something about it that they feel is objectionable. It could be wear, lines, color or other things. Even if you do not agree with them, the FACT is that
they are telling the truth. So why buy a coin with an issue? The only argument is, does failing CAC stop the coin from being the grade on the holder. Some people say no. Some say yes.
But why even argue the point? Buy something else! Be patient! It is very difficult if not impossible to have a #1 set of all time with ALL CAC coins. I have done it four times. I do not believe anyone else has. I will never do it again.
I bought the 1807 non CAC because I have not found a CAC example that I liked in all these years.
Also the 1807 has the Green/Newman Pedigree, is toned and beautiful. I do have an AU/CAC and will buy another
example in a higher grade if it becomes available.
I am pretty much done with this set. The Friend Collection is going to be sold starting with this years ANA auction.
Perhaps I can find a gem or two in it that would be an upgrade.
I could send this set to PCGS for possible upgrades. However I would never do that as I would lose the CAC sticker.
I would rather own a 66 or 66+ that is CAC than a 67 non CAC.