How to tell if this is a real zinc cent?

Discussion in 'US Coins Forum' started by Dtort, Oct 20, 2020.

  1. Dtort

    Dtort Member

    I have just unexpectedly come into possession of one of these zinc-looking cents. What's the consensus on them? I've found some references to them, and it seems that some are definitely real,but many are de-plated for fraudulent reasons. Is there a way to tell? Zinc1.jpg zinc2.jpg
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  3. Heavymetal

    Heavymetal Supporter! Supporter

    Certainly zinc
    Any other questions?
  4. paddyman98

    paddyman98 Let me burst your bubble! Supporter

    How exactly? o_O
    Heavymetal likes this.
  5. Collecting Nut

    Collecting Nut Borderline Hoarder

    All those little black and green spots have already eaten into the zinc on this Cent.
  6. Treashunt

    Treashunt The Other Frank

    1) take coin out of holder.

    2) take picture
  7. Heavymetal

    Heavymetal Supporter! Supporter

    9879BF48-E6BA-44C0-8728-5AD83B895ED4.jpeg 65018FDF-3733-4CB8-A239-361D568E34AD.jpeg I have unexpectedly come into possession of...
    found CRH
    I may have paid too much
  8. Mr.Q

    Mr.Q Well-Known Member

    If you paid more than a cent, yes you did. Zincolns are an insult to great 'Ol Abe in my opinion. Good luck
    coin_nut likes this.
  9. Burton Strauss III

    Burton Strauss III Well-Known Member

    A genuine unplated planchet (and they do occur) will look like a normal coin, but well struck and no copper.

    An acid-treated (to remove the copper) coin will have either tiny bits of copper left in the protected corners or will have thinner devices because the acid eats some of the zinc after the copper is gone.

    See how thin the letters are on @Heavymetal 's coin. I'm calling that acid...
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  10. Burton Strauss III

    Burton Strauss III Well-Known Member

    At least give him back one of the Ls - ZLincoln
    Jim Dale likes this.
  11. Dtort

    Dtort Member

    It was part of a mixed lot of coins which had some coins I was interested in. The lot wasn't itemized, and, looking at the picture, I was wondering what the 1995-d coin was - that part of the pic wasn't very clear.
  12. Dtort

    Dtort Member

    Sadly, the cover of the air-tite was off when I took the pics. (As soon as I got it I put it in the air-tite because I know how badly zinc oxidizes) I am working through the "new-guy-learning-to-take-decent-pictures" thing.
    Kentucky likes this.
  13. Dtort

    Dtort Member

    Anything help with those spots? I've put it in an air-tite to minimize further damage. (It was in a clear flip before.)
  14. Dtort

    Dtort Member

    Well, then maybe this really IS a mint error. It looks normal, no eaten up spots, no bits of copper that I can see. It looks better in hand than in these pics.
  15. TypeCoin971793

    TypeCoin971793 Just a random guy on the internet

    A Zincoln without the copper plating will have full mint luster. An altered coin will not

    3BF140F2-8AF7-4658-B5B1-C90BD7229D9A.jpeg E9AB6319-158B-4E0D-8344-DAC977026922.jpeg 7F538026-9473-4E27-B62B-B8D56802B7E4.jpeg BC4A340A-46F8-4108-89CF-B00D6B7ED085.jpeg F1817E64-F499-4545-8D91-7C8F25E4FF58.jpeg
  16. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    You can take a zinc cent and lay it between a cloth and hit it with a hammer a few times and the copper will fall off. Usually those cents are just a slightly larger diameter due to being smacked with a hammer. Lay another cent on top of that one and it will tell the tale.
    johnmilton and TypeCoin971793 like this.
  17. Cheech9712

    Cheech9712 Every thing is a guess

  18. Scuba4fun777

    Scuba4fun777 Come on, man!

    Perhaps the hammer caused the bottom of “ATES oF” to be flattened at the top of the reverse of the OP’s coin.
  19. Conder101

    Conder101 Numismatist

    That is very commonly seen on Memorial cents and is a striking problem caused by the fact that those letters are opposite the lower part of Lincoln's bust which uses up all the available metal. The metal would rather flow into that big open void in the obv die than into the tight spaces of the lettering on the rev die.

    The OP coin has a dead flat surface appearance with no luster. But it isn't dark and rough. I suspect it has been plated post mint and is NOT struck on a non-plated planchet.
    Scuba4fun777 and SensibleSal66 like this.
  20. Dtort

    Dtort Member

    Are you suggesting that another layer of zinc was plated on top of the copper plating on top of a zinc planchet? Intriguing! But I finally located my scale and the coin is 2.4g. The same scale shows post 1983 cents as 2.5 g, as expected. So it seems likely that this is just the planchet with nothing plated on top of it.
  21. Burton Strauss III

    Burton Strauss III Well-Known Member

    You don't own a scale able to differentiate 8 microns of plating. Especially with the tolerance is plus minus 0.13 g.
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