Polyester vs. Vinyl coin pages

Discussion in 'Coin Chat' started by CamaroDMD, Mar 31, 2012.

  1. CamaroDMD

    CamaroDMD Supporter! Supporter

    I know that the one thing to avoid when it comes to plastic coin storage is PVC. I also have learned that often times, PVC containing products are very pliable and have a "shower curtain" small. A while back, I purchased some 2x2 holding coin pages from a dealer. The company was "Supersafe" and they had two different types. One was vinyl and the other was archival polyester. Someone told me the polyester was a better choice so I went with that (it was slightly more expensive too). The material is very rigid and thus does not have the characteristics one looks to avoid in PVC. Does anyone here have any knowledge about the difference and safety of vinyl verse polyester coin page?
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  3. silverfool

    silverfool Active Member

    the polyester ones are kinda stiff and don't like a lot of folding and handling, tend to crack, so most dealers don't use them but for long term storege for yourself they are the way to go at least for MS coins.

    GDJMSP Numismatist Moderator

    If they are vinyl you don't want them - period.
  5. CamaroDMD

    CamaroDMD Supporter! Supporter

    Good to know...so it sounds like I have the right pages. Does vinyl contain PVC or some other undesirable compound?

    GDJMSP Numismatist Moderator

  7. CamaroDMD

    CamaroDMD Supporter! Supporter

    OK Doug...thanks for the info. It sounds like I have the better choice then.

    Do the vinyl pages specifically contain PVC or is it something else? Also, are the polyester pages actually safe or just safer than the vinyl?
  8. icerain

    icerain Mastir spellyr Supporter

    Polyester is safe for long term storage. All the products you see that are labeled Mylar are really polyester.

    PVC and Vinyl are the same thing. Some companies like to play with the words by not saying vinyl instead of PVC. Either way once you see either word you should stay away from said product.
  9. CamaroDMD

    CamaroDMD Supporter! Supporter

    OK, good to know. Thanks for the info, that makes me feel a little better. One other concern I have is when you insert a 2x2 into one of these polyester pages, it takes a little force because the material is so rigid. Is there any risk in causing wear to the coin while doing that? I have heard people say that you can get little rubs on coins when you put them in albums because of the sliding plastic covers. I know the coins are in a 2x2, but this seems like it could still be hard on them.
  10. icerain

    icerain Mastir spellyr Supporter

    It should be fine, just be careful that the coin itself doesn't hit the edge of the opening.
  11. desertgem

    desertgem MODERATOR Senior Errer Collecktor Moderator

    Polyester and polypropylene are safer for pages, but read the wiki pages on PVC. You have had enough chemistry in dental school to follow it. The aspect of plasticized ( with phthalates --> possible acidic outgassing) PVC is well accepted by the coin world. As a flip, the outgassed components of the plasticizers can react with moisture and the acid products "eats" corrodes your coin. Regular rigid PVC pipe ( no plasticizers ) is quite safe ( as much as anything can be today's world), and production techniques can produce flexible transparent PVC without the acidic plasticizers. I do not use plastic storage pages, as it isn't my form. When in doubt go the safest route.

  12. rlm's cents

    rlm's cents Numismatist

    I am glad to see someone else agrees with me. You are absolutely correct. The only problem with you correct answer is how do you know which PVC has plasticizer used in it. Unless you have specifics on the plastic being used, the only truly safe answer I know of is not to use PVC.
  13. medoraman

    medoraman Supporter! Supporter

    For those who maybe don't know which their sheets are, (and the smell of PVC goes away with time), feel your pages. If they are soft and pliable, that is a bad sign. The good type are stiff and susceptible to cracking. Compared side by side everyone would prefer pvc pages and flips, unfortunately they can destroy your coins over time. :(
  14. CamaroDMD

    CamaroDMD Supporter! Supporter

    These polyester pages are very rigid and not a lot of fun to us as they are brittle and tend to crack or split. They have none of the characteristics of a plasticizer in them. I believe they are safe to use.
  15. dannic113

    dannic113 Member

    Actually that quote is only part right. Here is the total break down. 1) vinyl IS PVC HOWEVER... 2) non plasticizer is safer that the alternative but only somewhat safe it can still do some damage to coins (most say never use these for proof coins as it causes hazing and hairlines) by being rigid they can scratch coins even MS coins and when exposed to actual moisture/water and high desert (120 degrees F.) heat they can begin to soften and breaking down. Now most won't store their coins in this manner but floods and things do happen. 3) most cardboard 2X2 flips now a days are made with polyester (PET) or mylar (BoPET). Again both are the same only diffence is the poly is just a clear safe film plain and simple. Mylar in addition to being trademarked by the DuPont Company is polyester film that had been biaxially oriented or tempered and stretched and can then be doubled over itself to give thicker protective film yet still be able to see through it. It is also a bit more protective from sunlight and heat than anything else. The absolute best thing to store coins in is #5 plastic polypropylene as these plastics take something like a century to even start to break down (even then they don't emit gases or chemicals that would harm coins), are impervious to water (execpt at any seams hense why airtites aren't waterproof), sunlight, heat lower than 200 degrees F., some airtites also use a coin safe plastic called triacetate. NGC/PCGS type holders and capital plastics holders are made from lucite brand acrylic plastic also totally safe but again not completely air or water proof.

    As for questions about which flips are low plasticizer pvc the only ones that I know of are International plastics of california, frame-a-coin or madison flips from new jersey (they will usually say #28UN for unplasticized) and Kointain's Saflips. Guardhouse and Cowens brands pay dupont to use mylar polyester, SuperSafe Saf-T-Flips use polyester. Any others you have to research who makes them and with what.
    As for personaly use I use the frame a coin flips from madison, new jersey ONLY to store coins for a week TOPS. I use them to house coins that people purchase or when I need to ship or transport coins say to or from a dealer or to someone else. They are thicker and more protective from a transit standpoint. As for cardboard flips I use guardhouse only because they usually cheaper than cowens or supersafe ones. Airtites I use acrylic only and never any direct fit ones as they let in too much air around the seams again only as personal choice. All albums and even the airtites and PCGS/NGC acrylic slabs are put in plastic cases and then are stored in plastic storage bins using polypropylene #5 with desiccants for summer humidity.
  16. zekeguzz

    zekeguzz lmc freak

    BCW makes polypropylene 20-pocket and 9-pocket pages. They are not rigid and will stand a lot of abuse. I use them for
    temporary and archival storage.
  17. Anthorn

    Anthorn New Member

    I think that we coin collectors, myself included, are a little paranoid about PVC products while not keeping up with new developments. As previously stated, safe acid-free PVC can be produced. If we look at major, well-respected European sources such as Prinz and Hartberger (in the Lindner brochure) we find flexible album pages for flip coin holders and the binders made from PVC. Further, in the Lindner brochure the material used in its "Karat" pages is described as "hard-PVC-foil".

    Personally, I use Littleton albums which are (I think) mostly paper based and I only use self-adhesive flips for very short-term pre-collection sorting which are stored in a Lighthouse box. But I think I would not be too worried about PVC products from major, well-respected companies which have built their reputation over many years.

    I think that more attention should be given to the staples used to secure non-adhesive flips: If normal, office-type staples are used they could in time go rusty. Zinc-plated staples are a better option.
  18. zekeguzz

    zekeguzz lmc freak

    I use Cowen's 2" x 2" flips. After stapling I inspect for air gaps. I always find one or more slits that will allow air and moisture to hit the coin. Therefore I tape each edge side with regular 'magic tape'. I've done this since 2009 and see no
    damage yet. I agree that I need to use a lot of desicant.
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