How To Hold a Coin

Discussion in 'Frequently Asked Questions' started by Speedy, Jan 8, 2005.

  1. newcoinboy

    newcoinboy Member

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  3. Anthorn

    Anthorn New Member

    I have Lighthouse curved rubber-tipped coin tweezers which are great for small coins but not so good for larger, heavier coins. Also it's pretty much impossible to press a coin into a hole in an album such as a Littleton by just holding the edge. They have to be pressed in with a finger on the face of the coin. So I have cotton gloves which I use not only for coins but also when handling albums, trays and flips. If the cotton gloves are too big, try washing them in hot water and see if they shrink.
  4. Hobo

    Hobo Squirrel Hater


    You can (and should) use a coin flip. Place the flip over the coin and press. That way you do not touch the coin with your finger and you do not damage the coin by pressing something rough (e.g., cloth) into the coin.
  5. Anthorn

    Anthorn New Member

    I never thought of using a flip. So near yet so far. Thanks for the tip.
  6. bullionkid

    bullionkid New Member

    Mostly people hold the coins in finger which shows fingerprints on it and it difficult to hold the coin safe as well as right.
  7. digibyte

    digibyte Member

    I ordered a few pair of gloves so when I handle the coins in my two cent piece collection I don't do damage. I'm thinking at least one of them was in Abe Lincoln's pocket for a while. How's that for history? :rolleyes:
  8. CoinsExplorer

    CoinsExplorer Member

    I had a dealer once grab my coin from the face and back. Talk about an idiot!
    silverbullion likes this.
  9. digibyte

    digibyte Member

    I purchased cotton gloves and they will absorb any moisture on your hands and if they fit well it is easy to handle your coins. Even wearing gloves I still hold my coins by the edge. I also purchased slabs made specifically for the denominations and then store the slabs in a slab box at consistent temperature. It works for me.
    silverbullion likes this.
  10. Tamaracian

    Tamaracian Member

    I came across this thread and thought I would give you folks my input on handling coins. When I first started to buy/accumulate coins in 2009, I only handled them by the edge, if possible, but that is not easy if they are small in size and lying flat on a surface. I did occasionally find that I had inadvertantly left some hairlines in the field of a proof coin if I hadn't grasped it correctly while picking it up or flipping it over.

    Not satisfied with bare-hands, I then tried cotton gloves, but found them rather slippery, short on tactlie feel, and not form-fitting (either too tight and restrictive, or the fingers are too long and get in the way). They also soil rather rapidly, and if you tend to sweat, soak up the sweat and eventually transfer it onto subsequent coins.

    I then tried using Nitrile Exam Gloves (like your Dentist and Medical Practioner use). They come in Small, Medium, Large, and XLarge sizes, are form-fitting, and usually have a non-slip micro texture that enhances gripping. Nitrile is non-hypoallergenic, is more tear-resistant than Latex, and has very good resistance to chemicals (like Acetone, alcohol, MS-70). I usually get them in a box of 200 for about $13 at the major discount Club Stores.

    Since I have been using the Nitrile Gloves I have been able to handle ANY coin with thumb and forefinger on its surfaces without leaving ANY marks or transferring any foreign substance. I also have NEVER dropped a coin, even when flipping it over like the TPGs do to evaluate cartwheel. I do look at each coin under magnification to check for hairlines, defects, and features, and this takes quite a bit of time under the lamp; it is very comforting when you don't have to worry about handling issue when looking closely at the surface feature with up to 20X magnification!
    Insider likes this.
  11. Davobenz

    Davobenz Member

    Handling high grade coins is easy if they are slabbed or encapsulated.
    Even the humble Mylar / cardboard 2x2 in a non PVC album is good. Just turn the pages! Very few of my coins are encapsulated, and none of them are slabbed.

    Coins in the British Museum just sit in trays, ready to be picked up by the edges.
    Then again, the British Museum doesn't bother with 'made for the collector' mint product uncirculated and proof coins, either singly or in sets.

    How does the ANA display their most valuable coins? Can study coins in their collection be handled by gloved human hands?
  12. Bman33

    Bman33 Well-Known Member

    If you want to use calipers and scales for dimensions and weight what should you do to keep your coin in good condition?
  13. tomfiggy

    tomfiggy Well-Known Member

    small jewelry scales have plastic tops that won't scratch your coin. I never used calipers for anything.
  14. Bman33

    Bman33 Well-Known Member

    What's a good surface to use if you want to take pictures of your coins? When holding it to get the coin out of the protector is there something to keep in mind?
  15. tomfiggy

    tomfiggy Well-Known Member

    I have used cotton gloves in the past but now I am getting pretty good at handling coins only by the edges. I use white paper, felt, or a wood desk to inspect them on. You should not slide the coins.
    Bman33 likes this.
  16. desertgem

    desertgem MODERATOR Senior Errer Collecktor Moderator

    I like nitrile gloves for general coin inspection and handling if one likes gloves, but they are not recommended for acetone. Actually most lists show latex gloves are superior to them with chemicals. Resistance of Gloves.pdf

    Also, SAE and metric plastic calipers with vernier are found at most hardware stores for under $5 and the accuracy is acceptable for coins/ However, remember that many coin metals are softer than hard plastic, so still use care to prevent accidental scratches.
    Bman33 and tomfiggy like this.
  17. Insider

    Insider Talent on loan from...

    I use a photographic "gray card."
  18. Insider

    Insider Talent on loan from...

    Many of the grading services use black velvet jeweler's pads.
  19. desertgem

    desertgem MODERATOR Senior Errer Collecktor Moderator

    "Many of the grading services use black velvet jeweler's pads."

    The big difference to me is that it is perfectly OK for jewelers to burnish and polish out any hairlines induced on the metal they are handling.
  20. Insider

    Insider Talent on loan from...

    I don't recall ever putting a hairline on a coin with any jewelers pad I've ever used. I keep mine COVERED, when not in use and Clean it w/compressed air and get a new one every so often - they are cheap. Otherwise, even dirt on a pad can hairline a coin.
  21. silverbullion

    silverbullion Active Member

    The same here.
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