NGC Recognizes New Variety of 2010­P Grand Canyon 5 Ounce Specimen Issue

The first variety in the America the Beautiful Quarters five-ounce silver coin series has been discovered and will now be recognized by Numismatic Guaranty Corporation (NGC). The variety, designated “Light Finish” by NGC, is so far seen only on the 2010-P Grand Canyon Specimen issue.

The U.S. Mint strikes two types of five-ounce silver America the Beautiful coins: the bullion version and the collector version. The collector version is vapor-blasted to create a matte finish, a stark contrast to the brilliant surfaces of the bullion issues.

Two distinct surface finishes of the 2010-P Grand Canyon Specimens have been observed: coins with the regular coarse matte finish and coins that have a slightly reflective satin finish. The latter type, designated “Light Finish” by NGC, is distinct from both the bullion version and the standard collector version. This hybrid type is easily identified—it has the same “P” mintmark as the other Specimen issues, but its surfaces are not granular and are more lustrous. The Light Finish coins are also dissimilar from the fully brilliant surfaces of the bullion issue.

It is not known how many of the 27,000 Grand Canyon Specimens struck by the Mint are the Light Finish variety. It is believed that the majority are of the standard matte finish.

Collectors can submit their 2010-P Light Finish Grand Canyon five ounce coins under the VarietyPlus service for designation on the holder. The fee for VarietyPlus is $10.

NGC may be contacted by writing to P.O. Box 4776, Sarasota, FL 34230 or by calling toll-free at 800-NGC-COIN (642-2646). NGC’s email address is

About Numismatic Guaranty Corporation (NGC)

NGC, the world's largest and most respected third-party coin grading service, was founded in 1987. From the beginning, NGC has committed itself to developing an impartial, trusted standard of consistent and accurate grading. To uphold this commitment, NGC's full-time grading experts are no longer active in the commercial coin marketplace, and are prohibited from buying or selling coins to ensure impartiality. As NGC has grown to become the leader in third-party grading services, we have maintained a steadfast and uncompromising commitment to this standard.

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2 Comments on "NGC Recognizes New Variety of 2010­P Grand Canyon 5 Ounce Specimen Issue"

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  1. Aaron Gelner says:

    I don’t get what a light finish variety is? I think NGC is missing the boat. The only variety that should exist is the NO FINISH variety.

    This doesn’t make sense and I think you should repeal the decision to designate the light finish variety. This may be confused with the no finish that should command a higher premium in the market place than say those that have a light finish. I’ve seen images of your designated light finish GC ATBs, and they are nothing like the ones that are missing the finish altogether.

  2. Louis Golino says:

    I am not clear about this. I thought that the NGC “light variety” finish is the same as the one your barber received, but it sounds like there are actually three versions: regular, light finish and no finish. I see ModernCoinMart is selling the light finish coins on e-Bay for a premium, but it sounds like the no finish ones are much scarcer. And you make a good point, how little finish is required for “light finish”?

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