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Stan McDonald - author 's Blog

29 Nov 2021

Die Cuds

Coins | Stan McDonald - author

Die cuds are created when a piece of the die breaks away. The missing piece of the die no longer has the intended details, and subsequent coins are minted with a raised metal area where the piece of the die has broken away. A retained cud occurs when an area breaks away but is pushed back into the coin in a slightly different place.

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24 Nov 2021

Die Chips

| Stan McDonald - author

Die chips are material on the coin's surface created in the minting process with metal that is trapped between the dies. Die chips can fill letters and numbers and place small, raised bumps on the surface of the coin. The coin in the photo is also striped, most likely from imperfections in the planchet.

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16 Nov 2021

Die Cap

| Stan McDonald - author

There are various degrees of die caps. Some die-capped coins are deeply struck, while others are stuck less deeply.

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15 Nov 2021

Die Breaks

| Stan McDonald - author

The best definition of a die break is from PCGS. “An area of a coin that is the result of a broken die. This may be triangular or other geometric shape. Dies are made of steel and they crack from use and then, if not removed from service, eventually break. When the die totally breaks apart, the resultant break will result in a full, or retained, cud depending whether the broken piece falls from the die or not.”

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13 Nov 2021

Damaged Dies and Hubs

Coins | Stan McDonald - author

Damaged DieSome die errors may be confused as die cracks, but there is a difference. A raised, thin, jagged line is attributed to a crack in a die, while a thick raised line occurs with a damaged die.When debris enters the stamping process, the debris may make an impression on the die head. Subsequent coins minted will show a thick line of material raised on the surface of the coin. If a hub is damaged, a similar line of material will appear on the surface of coins minted with dies prepared from a damaged hub.The first coin will have an indent on the coin's surface as the dies are pressed together to crush the debris into the coin's surface. Many of these coins are passed up by collectors as manmade damage, but there is a difference. Most manmade damage on the surface of a coin is created by scratching or gouging the coin and is easily recognized.By Stan McDonald - Author and Numismatist

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