How many copper 1982 cents are out there Vs. zinc 1982 zinc cents?

Discussion in 'Coin Chat' started by Drago the Wolf, Jan 10, 2010.

  1. Drago the Wolf

    Drago the Wolf Junior Member

    I heard, many years ago that there were both copper and zinc 1982 cents minted. I know that 1982 was when the switch to copper plated zinc cents began, but I also know that there are copper 1982s out there, so, how many coppers vs. zincs in 1982s are out there?

    And are copper 1982s worth any more than say, a copper 1981 or whatever other pre-1982 year that the Memorial Lincoln cent was made out of copper?

    Oh, and didn't the metal planchet company intentionally supply a few coppers for 1982 cents, just to get rid of what was left of their copper supply, or are copper 1982s considered a mistake, or error?

    Finally, I know there was a way from the way the dates were stamped into the copper cents differently from the zinc cents and you can tell them apart somehow, but I am not a good enough collector to tell the difference, so I just hoard pre-1982s, just to be safe.

    One more thing. Are they eventually going to let people melt down, JUST the copper cents for their copper value as they did with silver coins? And also, aren't the copper cents in circuation today similar in value to the silver coinage back in 1965? I know silver was cheaper back then, but then as the price of silver rose, people hoarded all silver coins, so, is this scenario going to happen with copper cents eventually? I am noticing less and less coppers in circulation and wanted to start hoarding them weres ago when they weren't worth crap, but now, as my mom gives one of my brothers her cents, because she hates cents and don't use them very much, I cull trough them and take out the pre-1982s.

    I still can't believe that my mom gets a wheatie still, every now and then. I snatch those guys up for my collection.

    Oops...Noticed I used the word "zinc" in this thread's title twice. Sorry about that.
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  3. Just Carl

    Just Carl Numismatist

    WOW, sure is a lot of questions there. Mainly you could or should purchase a Red Book by Whitman Publishing. There is real lot of info about that coin there. Well not a real lot, but there is one the www.coppercoins.com web site.
    However, all that is a bunch of lies. There really isn't any such thing as a Copper coin. The government has been faking that for a long time now. They produce pennies made of plastic and spray it with Copper colored paint from Walmart. :rolleyes: They have been doing this so that people that want to melt them down for the Copper will only end up with a pile of plastic.
    Back in 1982 the newsmedia got wind of this and forced the Mint to make real coins. So they did and they were made with Zinc looking plastic coated with the same Paint but not from Walmart since that stuff just doesn't stick. So they went to the ACE hardware company and are now using thier Copper paint. :smile:rolleyes:
    All of this was done by a secrete organization within the USMint called the MESS department. That stands for Mint Error Secret Services.
    As to meltingdown coins. You can do that if you want but don't forget to post when your going to do that and give your name and address.:smile
    For real, yes there are 1982 Copper and Zinc with Copper plating or possibly sprayed on Copper paint pending on who you listen to.
    No none are really worth to much in even the highest grades since so many people hoarded them by the millions. Most are less that $1 except the Proof.
    HOWEVER, in the Feb. 26th, 2008 edition of the Numismatic News there was a story about a second 1982 Double Die reverse found. If you have one of thoes, don't melt it down. Might be worth a real, real lot.
  4. Drago the Wolf

    Drago the Wolf Junior Member

    Whoa, hold on! I am NOT planning to melt ANY coins. I know its illegal to do so. And even if it were legal, I would not tempt it, as there are many danger factors to it. And you don't have to make cocky sarcastic posts to reply to mine, so next time, please leave them in your mouth, where they belong.
  5. Cringely

    Cringely Member

    a weighty matter

    Best way to tell is to weigh them.
    Bronze cents weigh 3.11 gms, Zinc cents weigh 2.5 gms.
    If you don't have an accurate scale, a simple dual pan balance will work. Just compare 1982 cents until one is obviously heavier than the other. The heavy one is Bronze. Use that as your standard.
  6. Cringely

    Cringely Member

    My gut feeling is that more bronze cents were made than zinc cents. That's based on my count of a count of 32 P mint 1982 cents (19 bronze, 13 Zinc) that I have in my collection of circulated coins (pocket change)
    Disclaimer: This is not an accurate or scientific survey.
  7. rlm's cents

    rlm's cents Numismatist

  8. fretboard

    fretboard Defender of Old Coinage

    There are actually 7 1982 varieties. Here they are 1982-P large zinc. 1982-P large copper, 1982-P small zinc, 1982-P small copper, 1982-D large zinc, 1982-D large copper and a 1982-D small zinc. that's all folks!!
  9. jallengomez

    jallengomez Cessna 152 Jockey

    At one point Charles Daughtrey was trying to get a good handle on populations of the different varieties, but it looks like the project has been on hold for some time now.

    http://www.thecentproject.com/
  10. cladking

    cladking Coin Collector

    I understand the '82-D coppers are considered difficult to find in very high grade. My experience though is that the zincs are hard to find gemmy. They're not rare I'm told but I've looked at a lot and see very few gems.

    The zinc coins aren't holding up in circulation and the early years are especially prone to being corroded away because the plating wasn't good. I wouldn't be surpriised if half the zincs are already gone and a lot of the survivors are in bad shape.
  11. cerdsalicious

    cerdsalicious BigShot


    I would agree with you there, early 80's to late 80's zinc penny's tend to be worse looking than anything I have seen, I would guess about 20-25% are already gone or out of circulation due to their deterioration.
    however coppen cents will be the new silver coins, people will hoard them and sell them based on their value of copper, not for actually melting them down.
  12. Drago the Wolf

    Drago the Wolf Junior Member

    Yeah, this was what I was saying. They would sold for melt value, but they just will not be melted, right? I mean, isn't that what they call selling junk silver? Sell it for melt value? I'm not sure.
  13. bhp3rd

    bhp3rd Die varieties, Gems

    There are enough copper 1982-P Lincolns to last for 1000 years!

    There are enough copper 1982-P Lgdt. Lincolns to last for 1000 years!
    If you search memorials you will see how many - the only hard or rare one of the 7 is 1982-P SmdtZ which rarely come nice and are more expensive.
    After awhile, a long while it is possible to tell at a glance which is copper and which is zinc both by feel and color. Until then there are 9 copper cents to the oz. 11 zinc for same weight.
    I think it is too early in history to get a feel for how many copper verses zinc cents there are "out there". Because there are billions, billions and billions and billions of them both and will be for a least another century!
  14. Hudson James

    Hudson James Junior Member

    I actually melt junk silver and I have been religiously for the past 10 years. It's just a personal crusade to rid the country of ugly coins.

    I also have approximatley 200 coffee cans full of copper cents that will be next.
  15. Hudson James

    Hudson James Junior Member

    Danger factors? like what?
  16. Drago the Wolf

    Drago the Wolf Junior Member

    Well, for one thing, it is toxic to breathe in the fumes of smelted metal.

    And a guy next door to my dad's grandma's house, many years ago, was illegally melting silver coins, and somehow managed to blow the whole second floor off of his house where he was doing it. Probably had a problem with the gases he used for the torch or whatever. (I think it was the house next to my great grandma's house, but I do know that it was in her neighborhood for sure.

    Those factors are all that come to mind, but I'm sure other factors could come in, like burning yourself with the flame you're using, or spilling molten metal on you, if you're clumsy anyway.
  17. cerdsalicious

    cerdsalicious BigShot


    Well I am sure the feds are going to love this! I smell a fine coming through right now!
  18. cerdsalicious

    cerdsalicious BigShot


    Itscalled junk copper. Except you cant melt it. theyre selling it on ebay but theyre not realziing the prices they should IMO.
    I think $.022 cents each is the price they should be getting they sell it in bulk like 50 lbs however most but not all are getting less than that according to my math. But I could be wrong.
  19. cerdsalicious

    cerdsalicious BigShot

    Also I have searched through about 200 give or take 1982 cents. Most I have found are zinc. A few coppers but all the coppers are 1982. All the 1982 D I searched are zinc. Maybe thats why they are so hard to find in good condition. If there is 1982 D copper I havent found it YET. lol
  20. Car10

    Car10 Senior Member

    Hi Drago. Great questions.
    The best method for differentiating a zinc 1982 cent from a copper one is to weigh it. The zinc cent should weigh 2.5 grams, the copper 3.1 grams. Both were made in great quantities. Copper '82's are not worth any more than a 1981 or any other common date copper cent. There is no way to visually identify the composition of the coin.
    If history tells us anything then yes, eventually, they will, someday, lift the melting ban currently in place on copper cents. It will happen when it is determined that the melting of copper cents will not cause a shortage to circulation.
  21. Just Carl

    Just Carl Numismatist

    Your a little to touchy you know. A little humor in your life is needed. Don't take everything so seriously or you'll end up with ulcers. Not ment to be sarcastic, just a little humor. Ever hear of it?
    As to melting coins being illegal, so are many things. Yet it is done constantly by all types of people every day. Silver coins are constantly melted for Silver usages. Same with Copper coins.
    And there is really no danger factors melting metals as long as you know what your doing. There are metal recyclers all over this country that melt metal every day and no problems since they know what they are doing.

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