Lincoln Cent - Looks like a Steel Penny. 1982

Discussion in 'US Coins Forum' started by Yooper14, Apr 5, 2009.

  1. Yooper14

    Yooper14 Junior Member

    My friend came to me with a lincoln cent, 1982, that he thought was very strange. He noticed that it was very silvery, like a steel penny, but it wasn't from was from 1982. We couldn't find that there were any strange things happening that year with pennies except maybe for a change from all copper to some nickle being added, but no other 1982 pennies seem to have this silver. We examined it closely and it doesn't appear to be a corrosion or patina. I tried my best to get a picture that would show the difference. Any ideas?

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  3. mark_h

    mark_h Somewhere over the rainbow

    Too me it looks like it was dipped in something - almost looks porous. But wait for one of the Lincoln experts.
  4. Hobo

    Hobo Squirrel Hater

    There were very BIG happenings with Lincoln Cents in 1982. The composition changed from bronze to zinc plated with copper. It is possible that your cent has lost most of its copper layer. You should weigh it to determine if it is a zinc cent or a bronze cent (because both compositions were minted in 1982).
  5. Andrew67

    Andrew67 Clueless

    Hobo nice profile pic! LOL
  6. Yooper14

    Yooper14 Junior Member

    Right. I had forgotten. We DID weigh it. He has it right now, and I don't remember the exact weights, but I have a gram and ounce scale. Anyhow, I do remember that it was not sufficient weight to be the copper variety. I'll try and get those stats up tomorrow
  7. desertgem

    desertgem MODERATOR Senior Errer Collecktor Moderator

  8. mgChevelle

    mgChevelle AMERICAN

    ya. We did this expirement in chem. Class. So did MANY others. That's probably what this is.
  9. Boss

    Boss Coin Hoarder

    Hobo, is that your pic? Awesome!!
  10. Hobo

    Hobo Squirrel Hater

    It is my pic this week. :D
  11. Boss

    Boss Coin Hoarder

    Is that you?
  12. tinytinkerbell

    tinytinkerbell TinyTinkerbell

    ok.. if it's a chemistry class experiment they must have just picked on the 1982 pennies cuz i have one too.. lol..
    i just posted my pictures and questions about it.. oh wait, Yooper14, you didn't put the penny back into circulation huh? if so i probably got it! lol
  13. lkeigwin

    lkeigwin Well-Known Member

    The copper plating is very thin on these, assuming it's a zinc cent and not a brass one. It probably was removed chemically though I suppose a mint-error is not impossible.
  14. BadThad

    BadThad Calibrated for Lincolns

    Copper layer removed with acid.
  15. Conder101

    Conder101 Numismatist

    He did say they weight was not sufficient to be copper so what we have is a Zincoln that has had the copper plating removed.
  16. tinytinkerbell

    tinytinkerbell TinyTinkerbell

    why does it just appear to be the year 1982 being chemically altered?
  17. Yuppers

    Yuppers New Member


    I don't think it's a coincidence because I just found my old coin collection from when I was a kid. In it is a silver looking penny which I always thought was weird. Anyways I googled it and found your post, I have a 1982 silver looking penny too!
  18. Lon Chaney

    Lon Chaney Well-Known Member

    The damaged, corroded, or otherwise altered grey-colored cents of other dates are just in other threads. You're searching for the year 1982.
  19. Detecto92

    Detecto92 Well-Known Member

    I'm wondering.

    Copper hoarders, instead of weighing all the '82 cents to see if they are copper, soaked them in a quick acid bath, the acid would strip away the copper plating on the zincs, but would only slightly damage the pure copper coins.

    Just a theory..
  20. BadThad

    BadThad Calibrated for Lincolns

    Quick acid bath? You'd need concentrated mineral acid to remove the copper layer. There's nothing quick (or safe) about it.

    Telling copper cents from zinc is so easy it's not funny. I can tell just by looking at them with 99+% accuracy. If I'm unsure, I simply drop it onto a hard surface and listen for a ring or the thud of zinc.
  21. Detecto92

    Detecto92 Well-Known Member

    Okay. Didn't know for sure. Thanks for the info.
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