Metal Detectors & Coins: A Three-Step Guide To Cashing In On Treasured Finds

Posted on: 20 July 2016

The use of a metal detector is exciting and exhilarating for many treasure hunters. As areas are explored, one of the best finds that you can locate are antique coins with a high value. When you find these coins, you want to ensure that you are getting the most value from them. One wrong step along the way can dramatically decrease the value and result in wasted efforts. Before you head out to search for buried coins, follow this three-step guide. Each step will ensure that you receive the highest coin appraisals and can make a profit from your metal detecting ventures.

Coin Cleaning

When digging up old coins from dirt or sand, it seems natural to want to clean the coin and make it look new again. A cleaning process can actually lower the value of the coin significantly. Coins have special metal coatings and materials on them that keep them clean and eventually give them an aged look as they go through circulation. Using any type of cleaner or acidic product can lead to the deterioration of these metal coatings and change the way that the coin is supposed to look. A lot of collectors seek the natural and aged look of a coin that occurs over multiple decades.

As you lift coins out of the ground, the only type of cleaning that you should do is under lukewarm tap water. The water can help clear any dirt or particles that have been on the coin from being in the ground. Once rinsed off, you can leave the coin to air dry or pat down with a soft cloth. The coins that you find should never be rubbed because it can cause parts of the coins to come off.

Coin Guide Books

As you discover coins, it's important to be aware of what you've actually found. Instead of waiting for an appraisal and heading into the process blindly, you can sort out the coin studs from duds by using a guide book. Carrying a guide book with you on your travels can help you identify specific coins, the years the coins came from, and their estimated values. One of the best books to have in this situation is "A Guide Book of United States Coins." The book is released every year and is nicknamed the red book for its bold red cover. The book includes pictures and listings of United States coins so it's easy to match up with the coins that you have found. Many coin appraisers will use the same guidebook, so it's easy to reference items and learn about the possible coin values you can receive by selling them.

Along with the United States guide, there is an international guide you can purchase to help you track any foreign coins that you may find.

Coin Preparation

Heading into a coin dealer with a bag of random coins may make you look unprofessional and lead to less value paid for the items you have found. To make your coins more authentic and valuable, you should seek the help of a professional coin-grading companies. These companies will examine your coins, determine if they are real, and then put into a coin slab. A coin slab is a protective case that protects the coin from any damage or harm. When using this process for multiple coins, you can build up a pretty big collection to sell. Sometimes it's better to sell coins in bulk packages that are more appealing to appraisers. The appearance and validation of these coins can make a big difference on the final sale. The use of coin-grading companies should become a regular part of your metal detector collecting process.

Once you've followed these steps, you are read to visit a coin appraiser. Some appraisers can give you estimates online while others prefer to do it in person. Choose a process that you are most comfortable with. You can click here for more info about coin appraisals.