TWO KEY BUFFALO NICKELS
The rarest Buffalo Nickel is a mint error! It was caused by a worker punching an “8” over the “7” on a reused 1917 die. This resulted in both numbers being visible on the coin. The error was not discovered by collectors until 1931, so most of the coins made it into circulation. Uncirculated pieces exist today only by chance. The overdate is rare in any condition, but is very rare in new condition. Prices range from $600 for well-worn pieces to $8000 for coins just slightly circulated. Some of the best uncirculated examples have sold for over $70,000 each. See the image below.
Detail of 1918 over 17-D Buffalo Nickel
Beware of counterfeits! Many bogus examples exist that have the date reengraved. On all genuine overdate nickels, the top of the “8” extends halfway up into the horizontal bar of the “7.” There is also a tiny die crack just above the tie on the Indian’s braid. To be certain your coin is genuine, and to greatly increase its marketability, you should have it authenticated and certified as to grade by one of the independent third-party grading services such as the Numismatic Guaranty Corporation (NGC) or Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS). You may submit coins directly to NGC if you are a member of the American Numismatic Association (ANA) or to PCGS if you join their PCGS Collector’s Club. You may also submit your coins through an authorized dealer.
A Buffalo Nickel with three legs? For over three generations, the 1937-D Buffalo Nickel “three legger” has fascinated collectors and the public alike.1937d-3-legged-buffalo-nickel Caused by the results of an improper attempt to repair a damaged die, many escaped into circulation before inspectors at the Denver Mint caught the error.
The coins’ outstanding feature is the buffalo’s missing front leg. Both stump and hoof remain, but the leg is entirely gone! That portion of the die was completely polished off so when the coins were struck, all of them were missing the right front leg.
Since most of the coins reached circulation, only a few survive in new condition today. Circulated examples, depending upon condition, are worth between $400 and $1000. Perfect uncirculated coins, which are quite rare, can bring as much as $20,000 or more.
NOTE: Counterfeits of this coin have been made by removing the leg from a normal 1937-D nickel. Compare your three leg nickel to a normal 1937-D and look for these differences:
-The rear leg on a genuine “three leg” will appear to have more metal gone than on the normal coin.
-It will have a series of raised dots under the belly that do not appear on the normal coin.
-Lastly look at the “P” in the word Pluribus and the “U” in the word Unum found on the left side of the buffalo. On a genuine “three leg,” they will be further away from the buffalo’s back than on a normal 1937-D.