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Thread: Challenge coin diameter

  1. #1
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    Challenge coin diameter

    A good friend asked me to make a display case for his daughters challenge coins. Is there a hard and fast standard size? What Im seeing seems to be around 1 1/4 but nothing is ever that easy for me.

    Ive seen the cases with little shelves but I really want to do the kind with tight fitting holes so the entire coin can be seen.

    thoughts?

  2. #2
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    With no idea of what a challenge coin might be, Google was employed.

    One dealer lists sizes of 1.25" to 2.5".

    You might have to get together with your friend and a micrometer, six pack optional.

    jtk
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  3. #3
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    Some might not even be round. And to make it more complicated, they can have different thicknesses.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stan Calow View Post
    Some might not even be round. And to make it more complicated, they can have different thicknesses.
    Another complication is if they have an inscription around the edge. U.S. coins used this feature until 1839. The U.S. Mint started using it again in 2007 on the Presidential Dollar coin series.

    This caused some controversy from people who didn't realize one of the required mottos was on the edge of the coin.

    jtk
    Last edited by Jim Koepke; 09-11-2021 at 2:28 PM.
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
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  5. #5
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    Im leaning towards a nice rosewood shadow box with a steel back in matte black. Ill make some little discs with a rare earth magnet to stick to the steel. Then use some double stick tape to hold the coin to the other side of the disc. This way, she can move the coins around any way she wants.

    question: is the back side of the coin important? My solution would limit access to the back of the coin unless she wants to replace the sticky tape.

  6. #6
    Among other things my BH collects shot glasses and small bells, my dad & I made some clear plex cubicles in different sizes to show them off-

    pcub.jpg
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Feeley View Post
    I’m leaning towards a nice rosewood shadow box with a steel back in matte black. I’ll make some little discs with a rare earth magnet to stick to the steel. Then use some double stick tape to hold the coin to the other side of the disc. This way, she can move the coins around any way she wants.

    question: is the back side of the coin important? My solution would limit access to the back of the coin unless she wants to replace the sticky tape.
    Tape on the coin surface can discolor the metal of which they are made. If there is any collector value, that is a no-no.

    One time while playing with a display idea for coins a narrow slot was made in which coins could nestle. The idea was to have a mirror as a backing so the reverse could be seen without having to handle the coin.

    Since these are not coins of monetary value they are likely what is known as medallion struck. This means the top and bottom are the same when the piece is rotated on its vertical axis. Monetary coins in the U.S. normally have their obverse and reverse rotated 180 on their vertical axis.

    The slot would need some way to keep the coins from rolling side to side if the case was tilted.

    Maybe add a door so the coins could be changed or handled as desired.

    jtk
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  8. #8
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    I have two public safety officer challenge coins. One from Beverly Hills, CA and one from Beverly Hills, MI. Both are exactly 1 3/4 across and 1/8 thickness. Both sides are engraved. They both came in a plastic sleeve.

    Here are pictures of both sides:

    1012B815-DDAE-409C-8978-A5468463D9B3.jpg

    76972074-B10E-44AB-B16A-9DC27DCF5D24.jpg

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Koepke View Post
    Tape on the coin surface can discolor the metal of which they are made. If there is any collector value, that is a no-no.

    jtk
    well shucks
    I really like the notion of making the coins appear to float over a black background. I need to find some invisible way to affix a magnet to the back.

  10. #10
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    [QUOTE=Roger Feeley;3142259]
    question: is the back side of the coin important? ...

    Most likely, yes. There is engraving on both sides and have different information. That's why most people mount them in slotted trays which can be picked up and both sides viewed. I have some I've been planning to mount for awhile but haven't done yet. My proposed solution is to mount them between two sheets of plexiglass, framed. The coins would sit in a wood panel in which the holes were made for the appropriate size, and then the plexiglass one both sides. I plan to use decorative brass bolts to hold the parts together so it can be re-opened if the coins come loose. A dab of hot glue to keep the coins from rattling or moving around. It would be finished so it could be picked up to look at both sides.
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  11. #11
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    [QUOTE=Stan Calow;3142341]
    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Feeley View Post
    question: is the back side of the coin important? ...

    Most likely, yes. There is engraving on both sides and have different information. That's why most people mount them in slotted trays which can be picked up and both sides viewed. I have some I've been planning to mount for awhile but haven't done yet. My proposed solution is to mount them between two sheets of plexiglass, framed. The coins would sit in a wood panel in which the holes were made for the appropriate size, and then the plexiglass one both sides. I plan to use decorative brass bolts to hold the parts together so it can be re-opened if the coins come loose. A dab of hot glue to keep the coins from rattling or moving around. It would be finished so it could be picked up to look at both sides.
    ok, my idea to use glue or any other adhesive is bad. But Im going to cling to floating coins as long as I can.
    what if I turn holders with a cavity custom made for each coin and make it a press fit. So the holder for a 1.75 coin would be 2?

  12. #12
    Found this thing on eBay and Amazon, it's an idea on how to float the coins, ads state a 'PET membrane' does the job, the frame/holder itself is just molded plastic. These are pretty cheap. I'm not much into woodworking so I'm not sure how to go about making something like this at home, but you guys are smarter than me

    ch1.jpgch2.jpgch3.jpg
    ========================================
    ELEVEN - rotary cutter tool machines
    FOUR - CO2 lasers
    THREE- make that FOUR now - fiber lasers
    ONE - vinyl cutter
    CASmate, Corel, Gravostyle


  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Feeley View Post
    well shucks…
    I really like the notion of making the coins appear to float over a black background. I need to find some invisible way to affix a magnet to the back.
    Do you have a lathe?

    If not there are other ways to make a pedistal that will mount on the back and hold the coins.

    If you do use wood, you may want to check on the reactivity of the woods used.

    Consult Dr. Google on > coin display ideas < for solutions others have found.

    jtk
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  14. #14
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    Noting another issue is that the thickness of the coins is also not standard.
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