Wednesday, May 29, 2013

CRH 5/29/2013 : Wheats and a Cud Error Penny!

Today I went to my local source bank, which has been getting weaker as the days go by. I used to go by and they'd have hundreds of dollars in coin rolls for me. Now, they're down to the bare bones when it comes to the rolls they have available. Occasionally they mention that some other people have been picking up larger amounts of coins, too. Another hunter may be about! I'll have to keep a closer watch over my coin roll hunting grounds.

I was only able to get $50 in dime rolls and $10 in penny rolls. How weak! I hoped something good was in them!

The dimes were unimpressive. No silver coins to be found today.

The penny rolls were considerably better. I pulled quite a few wheat cents, all from the 1940's and 1950's. Those are very common in CRH so pretty typical, yet better than average wheat results. An even cooler find was the incredibly shiny brilliant uncirculated 1955 wheat cent! It's easily the best condition wheat cent I've ever pulled from a penny roll. I imagine coins like this must have had a pretty cushy life to survive almost 60 years without any bad signs of circulation or corrosion. It sticks out like a sore thumb on my wheatie shot below:
Wheat Cents Found Coin Roll Hunting 1955 BU Wheat Cent 2013
CRH Wheat Results 5/29/2013 1955 BU Cent!

But the best part is still coming! I found this little gem in one of my rolls as well. He's a little worn, but he's easily the best find of the day.

1981 CUD Lincoln Cent Found Coin Roll Hunting 5/29/2013
1981 Cud Error Lincoln Cent Found Coin Roll Hunting in a Penny Roll!

It's a 1981 Cud Error Lincoln Cent! I'm not exactly an expert in error coins, but I did some quick research on how cud errors are made and it seems pretty straightforward. A cud error coin like this is caused when the die that is used to strike the obverse breaks under the many hours of use. The following coin strikes with the broken die are defective and a blob of extra metal is left in lieu of the die pattern. While a Cud can be faked or unintentionally replicated, the presence of weakness on the reverse in the same location indicates that this cud error is likely authentic!

My first obvious coin error found coin roll hunting! That totally made this hunt worthwhile since this is one of my best coin roll hunting finds!

By chance, does anyone know how much this cud error coin is worth?

Monday, May 27, 2013

Is Coin Roll Hunting Worth It?

When I tell people what I do or they catch me lugging around coins in my backpack, they often ask me questions like “Is Coin Roll Hunting Really Worth My Time?”, “Does Coin Roll Hunting Pay off?” or “Can you really make money Coin Roll Hunting?”. My answer to all of these questions is a very excited “Yes!”

First off, if you haven’t my mini-primer on coin roll hunting, I strongly recommend starting off with reading it here. It gives a very brief overview of the coin roll hunting process and what we’re all talking about.

Lincoln Cent Doubled Die Reverse
Doubled Die Lincoln Cent
 Remember that you’re only paying face value when buying coins for coin roll hunting. Assuming you find nothing valuable, you can simply return all of your coins and get back at least your investment.  There are many places that you can return your coins, but my favorite is to always use a bank with a coin sorting machine since it’s the quickest return method by far. Most banks also don’t charge their members a fee in order to use the coin counting machines, so there’s a little added bonus over some other options. One of the key parts of the “financial model” of coin roll hunting is that your coins are always worth at least what you paid for them. Would you buy a stock in a company that you knew could never go lower than what you paid for it? I think most people would.

Dime with a cud, cud coin reverse
Dime with a cud at 10:00
 Another key part of making money by coin roll hunting is how likely you are to find desirable or valuable coinage.  You would imagine that it’s not easy to find valuable coins, but that’s not exactly the case. Many valuable coins, like doubled dies or even some cuds, aren’t obvious to non-collectors but can easily be Ebay’ed for substantial percentage-based profit.  Silver coins aren’t incredibly common but can easily be found in any higher volume search.  These coin values vary with the silver price but are typically worth about 18-25x the face value of the coin in silver value alone. This is before factoring in any numismatic collector value. Dime roll hunting and quarter roll hunting have been particularly fruitful ways for me to find silver coins.

Roll of Silver Quarters
Rolls of Silver Quarters Are Out There!
There’s also the opportunity to get a collection windfall. About 2 years ago I was fortunate enough to buy some $10 quarter rolls from a credit union that turned out to be filled with 40 90% silver quarters. At the time, each roll was worth $250 in silver value even though I only paid $10 for them.  More recently, I hit a later year wheat cent collection. As older collectors pass their coins down to their next of kin, the value or importance of those coins is not always communicated or understood and they escape back into circulation to be found yet again!

You can see that it’s possible to get value from searching circulated coin rolls for valuable coins. They’re out there. Non-collectors are missing them and new collections are getting released back into circulation every single day. Sure, finding valuable coins isn’t going to be an immediate windfall, but you’ll accumulate value much quicker than you think, especially since finding silver in coin rolls isn't too hard. Worst case scenario, it’s very easy to dump all of your non-valuable coins right back for new rolls to start searching all over again.

Best of luck and happy hunting!

Sunday, May 26, 2013

CRH 5/25/2013 : Silver Continues!

Yesterday was an absolutely beautiful day so I decided to get out and hit a few banks for some coin rolls. I walk to all of my banks, so I tried to hit the path that would allow me to pick up and dump coins at various banks, with my ultimate destination being the single branch in my area that has an automatic coin counting machine. We coin roll hunters love the automatic coin counting machines!

 I don't remember all of the details of my various stops and searches, but I probably hunted something along the lines of $325 in coins, mostly dimes and quarters, because you never know when you might get lucky. None of the banks had any half dollars so that wasn't really an option.

 In all of my searching of the coin rolls, I was only able to find a single silver dime. That's a bit disappointing, but it's really my only "real" search in the last 2 weeks, so it's great to get the silver flowing yet again and finding silver in coin rolls is always tons of fun. The 1954 silver dime is neatly toned, but has a slight tinge of the yellow toning which I don't like as much as the black toning.

You can still find silver in those coin rolls, so keep looking and don't give up!
1954 silver dime found coin roll hunting in a dime coin roll finding silver in coin rolls
1954 Silver Dime found Coin Roll Hunting 5/25/2013

Thursday, May 23, 2013

What's a NIFC Coin?

If you've spent any time reading through the stories of coin roll hunters (as you're doing right now), you've undoubtedly come across people saying that they found some NIFC coins. This sort of language is particularly common among the half dollar coin roll hunters. NIFC stands for "Not Intended For Circulation" and includes many different types of coins that were not released as generic business strikes for everyday use including proofs and business strikes of coins from series that were essentially discontinued from "normal production", such as the Kennedy Half Dollar. Although new 50 cent coins have been being produced each year, they've been produced as NIFC since 2002 with the normal Philadelphia (P) and Denver (D) mintmarks. Collectors can purchase the newly minted half dollar coins in bags or rolls directly from mint at premium. However, they often make it into circulation and make semi-desirable coin roll hunting targets!

2012D Kennedy Half Dollar Coin NIFC Coin Roll Hunting CRH
2012 D  Kennedy Half Dollar NIFC coin

Sunday, May 12, 2013

CRH 5/12/2013 : Mediocre Results, but a Milestone!

Today I hunted a variety of coin rolls:
  • $15 in penny rolls
  • $50 in nickel rolls
  • $100 in dime rolls
  • $60 in half dollar rolls
Sadly, my only special finds were a handful of wheat pennies from the penny rolls. Two were from the 1930's, but they're not particularly valuable other than looking pretty cool and going in the wheat jar. I also got a handful of 2011 NIFC* Kennedy Half Dollars in the half dollar rolls.

Today I passed the milestone of $3,000 in coins searched since 4/10! It feels awesome to look back and think that I've touched and searched almost 26,000 coins since that day. That's 10% of my goal completed in about a month.
Wheat penny finds from coin roll hunting penny rolls wheatback wheaties cents
My wheat penny finds from searching penny coin rolls

* NIFC = Not Intended For Circulation

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

CRH 5/7/2013 : Steady Silver!

Today was a pretty straightforward search with some straightforward finds. I was able to search $200 of customer wrapped dime rolls and was lucky enough to grab 2 silvers for the silver stack! One looks to have a number of dings on the outer rim but the value is all in the silver anyway.

2 Silver Roosevelt Dimes found while searching coin rolls of dimes CRH coin roll hunting finds 2013
2 Silver Dimes Found While Coin Roll Hunting 5/7/2013

Saturday, May 4, 2013

CRH Dump Day 5/4/2013

A key part of coin roll hunting is finding a way to return all of those rejected, undesirable coins. I've been fortunate enough to find a dump bank with an automatic coin counting machine so I don't have to roll the bulk of what I have. Here's a photo of my coin machine receipt from earlier today. This doesn't even include the $200 in rolled coins that I dumped at another bank on the way over!

No questions asked by the teller - just a friendly smile. I love my dump bank!

Automatic Coin counting machine receipt coin roll hunting crh
Receipt from returning coins to my dump bank

Thursday, May 2, 2013

What is Coin Roll Hunting?

I know a lot of you who visit this blog are stone-cold coin roll hunters already, but one of my missions for this blog is to spread the word on this wonderful and fruitful hobby. I’m guessing that starts with introducing the hobby and talking a little bit about it.

1912 V Nickel
1912 V Liberty Nickel
Recently, there have been many ads on the radio claiming that they can sell you the secret to getting silver for free from any bank, many times without an account. The ad goes on to tell you that they are going to tell you the 5 magic or secret words that you need to know in order to do this. What these ads are talking about is a hobby or income source known as coin roll hunting and there really aren't any secret or magic words involved.

   Coin Roll Hunting (the hip, shorthand acronym is CRH), is the act of searching rolls of coins for desirable or collectible coins. Pretty much every searcher has their own pet coin type that they are looking for. Many hunters search for error coins, die varieties from the minting process, silver, valuble key dates, particularly old coins, foreigns, or even just a quest to fill one of those addictive little coin books. Personally, I’m a little bit of all of these, though at this point I don’t really have the patience to fully delve into the variety thing on everyday coinage. I’m sort of a silver stacker nut and I definitely love the older coins I find as well. I’d take finding a 1912 V nickel over a silver war nickel any day!  

Coin Rolls for Coin Roll Hunting
As a CRH'er -- get used to these!
      Typically, we coin roll hunters get our coins from banks or credit unions for face value, though there have been times in my obsession when I’ve asked stores to return my change in the form of coin rolls. Those were some dark times! Banks will usually oblige requests for coin rolls with no issues. I have many different banks that I stop at to pick up coins, affectionately referred to as Source Banks. I try to rotate through them so as not to become annoying.

Cummins Allison Coin Money Machine automatic coin counting machine
Coin Redemption Machine
     After getting the rolls, tear into them and keep the goodies! Remember that any coins you keep were purchased for the low price of face value.  Many coins are worth well more than that, even in circulated grades. All of the coins that are not simply end up getting returned back to another bank, referred to as the Dump Bank. It's generally wise to have a separate dump bank from your source banks since the last thing you want is to search the same coins repeatedly. When dumping coins, you can always re-roll the coins yourself, but I greatly prefer to select a bank with an automatic coin counter since it’s much easier to just dump the coins in and get all of your cash back. They’re generally pretty accurate and the time-savings is well worth any shortcomings from what I’ve been able to determine. I stay away from Coinstar machines, but there are (limited) cases where it may be a reasonable option for returning coins.

 Enjoy your new hobby and happy hunting!