Notaphilyc culture

collector's corner:

Welcome to my "Collector's Corner" page where I share my own personal opinions & RECENT OBSERVATIONS as a collector & a series of videos I entitled: NOTAPHILYC CULTURE.  Please bookmark & tour this page weekly. Note the Notaphilyc Reads page which contains links to interesting online articles I have discovered re: some aspect of this gr8t hobby.  Also check out my Social Media Links. Trust me folks, after 50 years of collecting & 5 years of contributing to this site, there's a whole lot of info for one to take in on Notaphilyc Culture.  ALSO:  A few collectors have told me to put my list of notes available here!


After each month passes, I add to my MONEY MARKET link for tips on how the market for collecting currency seems to have been holding up.  These are opinions based on observations, chatter on US/World forums, and may or may not be relevant to you as a buyer (but I do try my best to give an informed opinion).  Check out this article on The 7 coolest currencies in the world by Morgan Croissant.  I added a WORLD MOTIF page which I hope may inspire you. My intention is to help new collectors who may wish to form 1 or 2 collector goals to form SETS of what they wish to collect. I hope you can also draw the line on what NOT TO COLLECT so what you do collect only becomes better & better.

"Phil Notes"

Please see this link to an interview with an accomplished collector who I've dubbed "Phil Notes."  This collector (& many others) have helped me launch & maintain Notaphilyc Culture so it is current.

Try the "Collecting Banknotes" form quiz & submit.  If you're new to this site then you may want to take a look around before taking the quiz.  Remember: this quiz is based on strategies & info I have gathered for the past 47 or so years of collecting CDN banknotes & is IMO only.  Do not consider it "Gospel" (even if I do) or a "get-rich-quick" money scheme. That is my disclaimer & I will take no responsibility whatsoever from anyone who goes broke collecting world currency.  Some strategies may prove helpful while others may not. You must become your own judge on that case.

The front of a 5 Pound note P-35 from Australia

The front of a 1 Dollar P-28b from British Honduras

The reverse of a 100 Pengo P-111b from Hungary

The reverse of a 1000 Pesatas P-154 from Spain

Scarce M-c FTH

Scarce BSW

recent observations:

Twenty years ago, when I got back into this hobby, I met Don Olmstead (a well-known paper dealer) at one of our coin shows in the GTA (Greater Toronto Area).  He sold banknotes exclusively & this was his 2nd P/T job. He had to have another F/T line of work to make ends meet! He told me that paper currency collectors amounted for only a small fraction of the # of coin collectors. He was also the one to break it to me (gently) that US collectors drove the prices for Bank of Canada notes (not CDN collectors- as their numbers were far too small). 

I found the following PCGS article which backs up Don's (& tigertrader's) claim that the number of paper money collectors are a fraction of the number of coin collectors.  On May 11,2020, Steve Feltner published his perspective on "on Collecting World Banknotes"  To answer, "How do you see the future of world bank notes in respect to value?" he writes "If you look at the comparative values of world banknotes to other more commonly traded areas of numismatics, world paper money across the board is absurdly undervalued when considering its age, low survival rates, beauty, and broad appeal to non-numismatic people. If you had 10% of U.S. coin collectors also start collecting world banknotes, $200 notes would become $1,000 notes overnight because you wouldn’t be able to find them. " He goes onto elaborate that there are many opportunities for collectors to discover new signatures, dates, etc. I concur with his assessment & feel his predictions could prove to be prophetic.  Large size US currency continues to balloon in prices. Could this happen to World currency? I also feel that there is great potential for growth in the hobby & that collector interests/numbers continue to grow.  The reason more people consider collecting banknotes is likely Social Media but I also feel that our hobby is threatened by the Better Than Cash Alliance or BTCA's agenda to rid nations of their cash. If cash use becomes a thing of the past, it may go up in value (short term) but it could also disappear from the minds of the population rendering it forgettable (or insignificant) long term.  I know this may seem to be a gross exaggeration but our hobby could actually fade into oblivion if the BTCA have their way! (The issue of our lost privacy is a whole another "can of worms!)" This may also come across as far too hypothetical now, but look at what happened to other hobbies/obsolete technologies: where are all the stereoscopic or phonographic cylinder collectors?

The point of this website is to function merely as a REFERENCE point for my Youtube Channel & to stimulate interest in this gr8t hobby.   If there are other "take-aways" bonus!

In 2018, I attended an excellent RCNA workshop in Mississauga on storing/preserving one's collection and grading paper money by Steven Bell of BCS.  If you have been a collector for a few years and want more information- then I highly encourage you to try getting your feet wet at either a local chapter or at one of these great workshops! See the RCNA link on Notaphilyc Sites page.

Thanks for stopping by!

Scroll down for video tips on collecting, buying & selling banknotes, understanding what makes a note more collectible, etc.  Take this link for observation on the Money MARKET.

This site could not have been put together without a multitude of reference material drawn from many sources.  Please refer to the Notaphilyc Sites page if you wish to pursue more information (like I have) or see my Acknowledgement page to see who I am indebted to for info. 

Hoping (& intending) to tap into the minds of Canadian world class paper money collectors!  Take this link to learn more.

Above is BC-54ciE3ii (a 1979 $20 with an offset printer's error) which I bought from selling off some common higher denominations about 20 years ago.

Above is BC-9b or P-46b featuring HM QEII as a child on this cropped image of a small sealed 1935 $20.00. This note will always remain super popular.

Iran p-100 20 Rials 

For an example of the 50 Rial with an arabesque overprint see this link shared by the British Museum or scroll below for the 20 Rial.

Iran P-110b 20 R

This is my all-time favourite example of an overprint.

"Cash is king"

This was my first foray into producing a video about collecting Canadian banknotes.  In it, I explore why I collect, my favourites and provide an example of searching two bundles in search of a special serial numbered note.  Hope you enjoy!

Introduction to collecting banknotes:

After some computer glitches from my old mac (purchasing a new computer) and some reflection on my first video, I realized it would be prudent to create a new series on two principles: focus & scope. After I finished this video, I realized one could employ these two principles to anything one collects.  I consider how many of us typically get hooked and how we can refine our "keepers" by being more selective. 

Part 2 (Today's society going cashless)

After exploring many media sources, it occurred to me that society is indeed headed towards more & more cashless commerce.  See this video to determine why now is as good as time as ever to start collecting specific types of banknotes.  As an added bonus, you can get to know my alter ego "Captain Currency" a little better ;  -  )

Part 3 (what should I collect?)

This video is what I like to think of as the "meat & potatoes" of the series.  It uses the 4 "S" as a guiding principle (consider a note's Shape (grade or condition), Series (year it was produced), Signature combination & Serial number).  View the video to explore more:

PARt 4: (which nations should I collect?)

This video takes Part 3 to the next level: examining what countries are popular enough to have a solid "fan base" or buyer's market.  I consider pre-Euro, Euros and Commonwealth nations  that have never cooled down in the world market.  Check out what I believe are "hot" buys and what "not" to buy:

Video 5: Grading basics, references & how to source banknotes:

My guest, David Sykes, first looks at Third Party Graded (TPG) banknotes and how they've reached their designated grades.  Then, using Charlton Guide to Canadian Government Paper Money, David continues to examine some circulated examples (VF and less).  The point is: you should start trying to assess a note's condition asap!  Don't just rely on TPG holders! Finally, I urge you to use Internet sources to familiarize yourself with examples of notes and how to acquire decent collectible banknotes.

video 6: the key to selling is buying selectively:

This video takes Video #4 to the next level, examining smaller nations, discontinued currency & how to acquire collectible lots for less. Keep your costs down and be super selective.  Buy with the intent to sell & during world market instability. Sell those desirable extras when outlooks are more "bullish."  

video 7:

This is my one year anniversary video.  Essentially, I've boiled down most of what I feel is the essential stuff you need to know in order to collect world banknotes during these unprecedented times.  I will cover other topics in my next video. 

recent pick ups:


Stay tuned for more "Captain Currency" and Notaphilyc Culture videos. Episode 8 will at how to store your banknotes, how to preserve them (sleeves & desiccants), scanning them and pros/cons to submitting your raw notes for TPG (Third Party Grading). Stay tuned!

Here are a few interesting articles on new banknote issues or other contemporary news affecting today's currency: