Rings and Things
Want something cool to have of give while COVID19 keeps everyone at home? Why not rummage through your couches and closets for some cool coins. From between the cushions to that box or bag of strange coins from a trip abroad. If it is round’ish I can turn it into a ring for you or someone special. Ideally the best one are in good, uncirculated or near uncirculated condition. A higher silver content is also a plus but not a requirement.
From a historical standpoint, coin rings have likely been around as long as coins. For a more fathomable historical perspective they came into “fashion” in World War One and WW2 as soldiers would make them into makeshift wedding bands to give to women while on furlough. Today the art has evolved into a rather precise set of methods involving starter cones, stabilizing cones, reduction dies rings stretchers, arbor presses and hydraulic presses. The gear I have accumulated has taken me over a year to afford. Hey… the good stuff ain’t cheap and the cheap stuff just leads to frustration and epiphany through hindsight. DOH!!!
So… start digging through those couch cushions and storage boxes. Send me your special coin… or 2. You can contact me for info through the CONTACT INFO page here. That’s why I named it that. Seemed brilliant at the time I suppose.
While trotting about the globe in a virtual pursuit of cool high-silver coins I discovered that pre-1945 Australian Florins are 92.5% Sterling Silver.
This is in contrast to the British Florins that were 92.5% Sterling Silver in coins dated 1845-1919. Big deal? Yes, actually. The high silver British Florin is older and therefore more difficult to find in a fine, uncirculated form. They are out there, just harder to fine in great condition.
Enter the Australian Florin. Pre-1945 makes them much easier to find in fine shape. Below is a 1944 Australian Florin that came in yesterday. I was so excited that I folded it into my own personal ring within a few hours of it arriving.
High 92.5% Sterling Silver is about as high as any circulated coming gets. FYI…. the 1914 British Florin in available. Just send along your ring size. I am hoping to find more Australian Florins soon. My secret agent Thomas lives in Melbourne and is on the hunt for me.
As you can well imagine, my life is spent spanning the globe on a private jet, looking for rare and finely designed coins to use in my rings. To those who see me this way, thank you for your vivid imaginations.
While looking for (fill in the blank), I happened upon a pill bottle thingy that I keep many of my coins in. It was labeled “High Silver Quarters”. While it DID contain an un-circulated, 90% silver proof of the America The Beautiful National Park quarters (White Mountains… BTW), it also had a strange British Two Shilling coin from 1944. The “Googler” tells me it’s 50% Silver. This means it will shine up nice but might present issues with the 1 out of 10 people with nickle/copper allergies.
Further investigating had me wondering if the two shilling ever came in higher silver content. BOOM. Yes it did. 1910-1945 Australian two shillings where nice 92.5% Sterling Silver. This is the same of the 1914 British Florin that I wear myself, but have also enjoyed making for many of my UK friends.
So…. now I’m contemplating making some of these Australian two shillings (pre-1945 in 92.5% Sterling) for anyone interested.
Here is what they look like before I punch a 1/2-3/8″ hole in the middle.
So, chime in. Who wants one? The only thing that would be lost is the shield in the middle of the reverse side.
The Rings Of Change just found a new source for these beautiful coin rings. New gear purchased siting COVID boredom enables these things to get shined up and now sealed with a protective layer of clear powder coating.
One of my favorite coins to work with are these Canadian large cents. They are still fairly attainable which is surprising given their age (1858 to 1920). Just because they are attainable does not mean they lack value to a collector. One uncirculated Canadian Large Cent from 1882, comes sold for $1400 US dollars during a 2016 auction.
When I go out hunting for coins, I check their current market value to make sure I’m not getting ripped off. Then I start poking around the interwebs looking for the coins with the least amount of wear for the best price. That’s one issue I have with buying bulk. You can get a deal on 10-50 coins, but 20% of them may be too worn down. So I buy then in small lots of 3-5-10 and only when I can easily determine their minimal circulation wear.
The Canadian Large Cent coin rings are available for just $45 HERE!
Over the last few months I’ve been blessed, bequeathed and been the beneficiary of coins from around the globe. These some to me from friends and family who have traveled about and come home with coins they did not spend. Hope chests, sock drawers, couch cushions and shoe boxes have rendered a great and confusing array of coins. Some of them have not a single word of English on them, so it makes their lineage difficult at best and impossible in other cases. Nonetheless I select a few based on their likelihood of folding into an attractive ring and go for it. The not knowing what they are made of can be a foolish quest. Really cheap alloys don’t always cooperate when annealing and stretching.
This week produced some surprising results. Most of all the East Indian Rupee. As far as I can tell it is made of Ferritic Stainless Steel (17% Chromium and 83% Iron). It does shine up to a nice silver or stainless steel luster.
Next on our list of surprises are several heavily patina’d Rhode Island bridge and highway tokens. Generally “Tokens” are often made of cheaper metals: copper, pewter, aluminium, brass and tin. sadly the stunning patina is lost during the annealing process. The result is an attractive gold “looking” ring. I have heard that a patina can be induced using ammonia. More to come on that front. Here you can see the patina’d coin and the first ring.
Finally we have a 1979 French 5 Franc. Nickel-clad copper-nickel. It shines up nice. Not for anyone with a copper/nickel allergy, though pretty just the same.
New York City Subway Token Coin Rings.
I grew up outside of NYC. When I was 13 through 16 I commuted into the city to my school at 50th and 3rd. While that did not require subways, I quickly made friends that would show me (after classes were done by noon) around the city on the subway system. Even though the coins were just tokens, they represented a certain amount of freedom that is not normally experienced by a young teen kid.
These coin rings are a chance to wear those memories and a coin that will never be minted again.
This is a post about rings from coins that may or may not have high silver content, but offer some of the very nice art of the mint artisans. Being of low precious metal content they are super cheap, but still contribute to the 30% toward suicide prevention as any other ring.
Personally I spent many years commuting to NYC and the memories of having had a pocket full of NYC Subway Tokens at the end of a day is still one of the things I loved about the NYC City vibe from those years.
If you or someone you know shares this love of NYC, these coin rings are a great and affordable gift idea. After all… I’m wearing one.
Aside from being a 3 act comedy play written in the late 1800’s. the Silver Shield is also a collection of “rounds” minted by Golden State Mint. There are currently 600 variation. They are .999 fine silver, .999 fine copper, and .9999 gold. Each piece in this collection aims to express sentiment towards some of the most controversial issues of the times.
This particular coin ring takes on the issue of legalizing cannabis. The outside of the ring is the stunning and intricate Silver Shield art and reads, “SILVER SHIELD 1 TROY OUNCE 2018 .999 PURE AG” The inside of the ring reads “CANNABIS .999 FINE SILVER 1 OZ LEGALISER NATURE”. What remains of the middle after punching is the outer edges of the Canadian maple leaf with a marijuana leaf layered on top.
Also note that this ring has not yet been sized, cleaned, antiqued and polished. Since it is .999 fine silver there is no need to seal it.
You can order this beautiful and meaningful treasure in US ring sizes 10-12.5 HERE.
The craft of making coin rings does have it’s fair share of perils. In fact I have two mason jars that are slowly filling up with my mistakes. The Jars Of Shame are just a embarrassing part of the process. Also… there are a lot of pinchy parts that, if you’re not careful, will do what pinchy things do to you fingers and skin. A painful part of the process.
After destroying two rings I’d spent almost 2 hours on, I needed to redeem myself. I listened the the ancient ancestors of coin ring making as they whispered to me, “Go back to the beginning. Fetch yourself a cold IPA… and go back to the beginning”. So I listened and fetched a fresh Founders All Day IPA from our seasonal walk-in fridge (The garage). With it’s low 4.6 ABV it’s practically health food.
Lately my friends and family have started unloading a great deal of cool looking State and State Park quarters on me. It is the U.S. Quarters that are the gateway coin to coin ring crafting. These were the result. GET YOURS HERE!
*All ring images are representative of the ring(s) you will receive. Example images will change as needed.