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Gold Plated Coins - Gold Plated Quarters

January 9th, 2012 Coins

A Great Gift for Quarter Collectors

There are many coin collectors out there who love U.S. quarters. The Statehood Quarters have proven their popularity since they were first issued in 1999. Now there are a variety of sets and gift items created from gold plated quarters from this series.

One such gift is a collection of 24k gold plated quarters from the 2000 Statehood issues, paired with an attractive 4.12 inch State Quarter trapper knife. The knife’s blade has gold plated state symbols etched into it. The handle is imitation bone with nickel silver bolsters, and “ 2000 State Quarters” is embossed into the handle. The gift set, which runs between $40 and $100, depending on where you find it, includes the five coins minted that year:

  • South Carolina
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Virginia
  • New Hampshire

Another popular quarter gift is a set of a year’s five issued coins, dipped in 24k gold, and set in a black display case. Many people collect every set! These make great gifts, and are affordable at around $20 per set (some dealers may offer discounts if you commit to buying all ten sets). A variation of this set is one with gold plating only on the coin’s images, displayed in a hand-carved wooden case. These are even more affordable at approximately $9, including the five coins and the wooden case.

Buying Gold Plated Coins

Check the book value of the original coin, and don’t pay too much more for the gold coating. If you are skeptical about a dealer trying to sell you a coin, trust your instincts. Decline the offer, go home and do your homework, and if you were wrong and the coin was a good deal, go back and bargain.

While gold plated coins are more affordable than solid gold coins, they have strong value that appeals to many collectors. In fact, many of the top mints worldwide issue 24k gold plated coins:

  • Royal Australian Mint
  • British Royal Mint
  • Royal Australian Mint

Gold plated coins typically are struck in silver, and have a 24 karat gold plating applied to their surface. Sometimes other less precious metals are used. Here are some helpful hints to aid you in your first foray into buying gold plated coins:

  • Always buy from a reputable dealer.
  • Ask questions about the coin.
  • What is the base metal?
  • What karat is the plating?
  • If the base is silver, what is the quality?

Gold plated coins should be sold as proofs, since they are essentially uncirculated coins. They should be housed in a sealed container, and should be accompanied by a Certificate of Authenticity that states what mint the coin was initially a part of.

Commemorative Gold Plated Coins

If you’re into commemorative coins, commemorative gold plated coins are right up your alley. Throughout the years, mints like the U.S. Mint have issued special coins that commemorate certain events or key figures. These coins are uncirculated and serve as collectibles for coin aficionados.

Military Commemorative Coins Various branches of the U.S. military have issued special commemorative 24kt gold plated coins to honor the brave men and women who fight in that branch. One example is the Marine Corps. There is a coin that is designed to present to members of the USMC who have achieved special feats.

World Trade Center Another noteworthy collectible is the 9/11 World Trade Center Commemorative coin. This gold plated coin was issued at the five year anniversary of one of our nation’s most tragic events.

Saint Edward's Crown 24 Carat Gold Plated Coin The U.S. isn’t the only country hopping on the gold plated bandwagon. England, too, has its own commemorative coins, including this Saint Edward's Crown 24 Carat Gold Plated Coin, which celebrates Queen Elizabeth II and the Crown Jewels, noted for their role in the important Coronation ceremony among England’s royalty. It even has an emerald housed in the crown on the reverse side!

How to Spot a Fourrée

A fourrée is coin plated to hide its true metal identity, commonly found in Ancient Rome and Greek cultures. Here are some tips on how to spot a fourrée:

  • Weight. The weight of a fourrée will not match up to the correlating coin. For example, a gold plated coins that are copper inside will weigh less than a true gold coin, since the density of copper is lower than that of gold.
  • Sound. A fourrée, if dropped, will not sound the way a pure coin will. While this was a commonplace test for authentic coins in ancient times, it is not recommended today, since it could damage your precious coin.
  • Appearance. If an ancient Greek or Roman coin (or other) shows wear and tear that reveals a different color for the core, the coin is likely a fourrée. Merchants used to chisel a mark on a coin to determine if it was pure through and through (similar to more modern merchants biting a gold piece to determine its validity).
If you find a fourrée, should you avoid purchasing it? Not necessarily. Fourrées in and of themselves are interesting pieces of numismatic history, and there’s nothing wrong with deliberately adding some to your collection. Just make sure the price reflects its lack of authenticity.

Improve Your Game

Golfers are as superstitious as any other sports players, if not more so! Each player has his own unique habits that he believes helps his game. Some strange ceremonies include:

  • Wearing a particular color shirt for every game
  • Using a particular club
  • Wearing underwear a player has won wearing previously
But the most popular superstitious activity has to do with coins. Some, like Jack Niklaus, keep lucky coins in their pockets. Others use them as markers on the course. John Cook only uses the new state quarters if they represent a state he has won games in.

If you don’t already have your lucky coin marker, why not do it up right and select from among many 24k gold plated coins designed just for that purpose? Yes, companies are taking advantage of this superstition and creating custom gold plated coin markers for golfers. The Morgan Mint offers a “lucky” gold plated Irish penny and Indian Head penny. The gold plating keeps the coin protected against the harsh weather conditions some players are exposed to. It even features a snap on the back, if you would rather wear the lucky coin on your glove!

While you can’t guarantee the luck of these coins, it sure can’t hurt your game!

Kennedy Lives on in Gold Plated Splendor

The Kennedy Half Dollar was originally released on March 24, 1964, less than one year after John F. Kennedy was shot. Since then, it has taken its place in the coin Hall of Fame, and has been used as a springboard for many unique coin products.

While the half dollar in and of itself is an attractive coin, many companies have decided to transform it into other collectible items. One is a money clip. The coin on the clip is a gold plated half dollar (with the 24k gold plating accenting only the eagle) nestled in a gold plated money clip. It’s a great gift to give your favorite coin collector!

Another use of the Kennedy half dollar is the transformation of the coins into “Baseball Golden Legends” colorized coins. The coins are first plated in 24k gold, then a special colorizing process is performed to cover the coin surface with the image of a baseball legend, his name, nickname and number.

Other uses of the Kennedy half dollar are creative too: the fixture of a bolo tie, a series of gold plated, colorized and hologram coins that enhance the image of Kennedy, and a Support Our Troops colorized half dollar. Your gift possibilities are virtually limitless!

The History of Plated Coins

As long as coins have been minted, there have been plated coins. Early Greek and Roman coins were called “fourrées,” and they were designed to deceive the recipient. (Today, of course, plated coins are more for aesthetics, though there are some plating scams you should beware of). Gold plated coins were not the only type of fourrées. Others were silver plated over copper coins, gold over copper and gold over silver.

The first production of fourrées can be traced even further back, to the 7th century BC in Asia Minor. The goal, obviously, was to create a coin that seemed to be worth more than it actually was.

Counterfeiters have always been around! The difficulty for coin collectors is determining which of the above minted a fourrée. While these coins may have been worthless as currency in ancient Greek and Roman history, they prove to be valuable to collectors today.

Some examples of early fourrées are:

Roman

  • Under the rule of Augustus: Fourrée denarius – circa 27 BC
  • Under the rule of Augustus and Tiberius: Fourrée denarius - 13-14 AD
  • Under the rule of Brutus: Fourrée denarius circa 54 BC
Greek
  • Larissa: Fourrée drachm - 400-344 BC
  • Persian Empire: Fourrée siglos 450-330 BC

The Indian Head Penny is Back in Style

The Indian Head penny has always had a special place in the hearts of Americans. Originally minted from 1859 to 1909 at the Philadelphia Mint, the coin featured a Native American wearing a feather bonnet. His bonnet had the word “Liberty” engraved in the band. The reverse initially had a laurel wreath in the center, but in 1860 the design was modified to host an oak wreath bound together with a ribbon. In the ribbon were three arrows, and in the background the shield of the U.S. peeked out from behind the wreath.

One hundred years later, this penny is all but extinct. However, there are some gold plated pennies on the market that are attractive keepsakes that serve as a memento of this important piece of numismatic history.

These gold plated pennies, originally struck in copper, with some nickel mixed in, have been dipped in 24k gold to create appealing gift items, such as lucky golf markers, pendant necklaces, cufflinks, money clips and more. Fans of this Indian Head penny have found unlimited possibilities in their creations! You can find many of these gift items on eBay or dealer websites, or possibly at craft fairs and coin shows.

The Only Gold Silver Eagle

If the Silver Eagle coin is silver, how can it be gold? Seems like a conundrum, doesn’t it? Think of it as a “dipped” coin. A coin issued early in the life of the 2006 Silver Eagle dollar coin mintage is dipped in 7 ml of 24k gold, creating a new look altogether that is definitely a thing of beauty!

The carefully applied gold plating enhances the crisp features of this silver dollar coin, which features Liberty as portrayed by coin designer Adolph Weinman. The gold plated Silver Eagle is one of several enhanced Silver Eagle coins. Others include:

  • Gold Hologram Eagle
  • Silver Hologram Eagle
  • Colorized and Holographic Silver Eagle
  • 20th Anniversary Colorized Silver Eagle
If you’re a big fan of the Silver Eagle, you can buy a set that contains all five coins, displayed in an attractive display case. Currently the entire set costs approximately $150, while the gold plated Silver Eagle coin by itself costs around $30.

Please note that these enhanced coins are not issued by the U.S. Mint, nor are they endorsed by it. Don’t let any dealer tell you otherwise. The Silver Eagle on its own is guaranteed in its weight, purity and content by the U.S. Mint. The Morgan Mint alters the faces of coins using colorizing, hologram technology, and gold plating.

When is a Dollar Worth More than a Dollar?

Coin collectors know that very often a dollar is worth much more than a dollar, especially when it is a gold plated silver dollar! Throughout time, numismatists have celebrated the beauty of certain silver dollars, and have enhanced them by applying a delicate gold plate to the surface of the coins.

Gold Plated Morgan Silver Dollar One such example is the Morgan Silver Dollar, originally released in the late 19th century, when so much silver was mined in Nevada that the U.S. Government tried to “soak up” the metal by issuing silver coins. While many of the coins were melted down in 1921 when the coin ceased to be minted, some smart collectors have been able to obtain them, and some companies have enhanced these rare coins with gold plating.

Gold Plated Silver Eagle Dollars A coin a little more modern is the Silver Eagle, considered by many collectors to be the most popular silver bullion coin in the market today. The “Walking Liberty” coin was first minted in 1986, although the Liberty design was featured on half dollars between 1916 and 1947. The beautiful coin has an added accessory: 24k gold plating! This makes it the heaviest pure silver coin (also has the most silver) in U.S. coinage history!