Posts Tagged ‘aging’

Numismatists will Hate Me.

January 3, 2010

Occasionally I buy a roll of dollar coins from our bank for spending. The roll is deceptively small looking as the coins are all stacked neatly in a roll. When one opens the roll, however, the coins come out in a pile which can barely be kept in your hand.  There’s only 25 in a roll, but it seems like so many!

Because these rolls are uncirculated, straight from the mint, they are brand new.  They look it, all shiny and bright. Even though they are a gold color, they don’t look real at first glance because they are so very bright and clean. I’ve been trying to find a way to age some of my coins, to get them that ‘circulated patina’.

A civil war re-enactors group member said that some of the ‘guys’ use uric acid (urine) to age their brass buttons. The composition of the dollar coins is basically brass, so that would undoubtedly work. I’ve found 2 other methods which are a)cleaner, and b) faster.

The first is simply to put them in the center of your stove’s gas burner. They come out darker, almost too dark. A bit of a polishing with Brasso will bring them back a bit. (Don’t go too far, or you’ll be back to shiny newness.) The second way is to put a pool chlorine tablet in some water, day a cup and put the coins in the water. This will ‘age’ them so severe;y in just a few hours that they will look like part of a pirate treasure that spend years on the ocean floor.