Coin Handling

If your coins are still in circulation, they probably aren’t extremely valuable, but that doesn’t mean you can handle them just any old way. You do, however, have to take special precautions in coin handling.

In general, collectible coins should be handled carefully to avoid the possibility of causing wear or introducing substances that may lead to spots or color changes. Many holders will provide adequate protection for ordinary handling. Before removing a coin from its holder, consider whether it's really necessary.

Never touch an un-circulated or Proof coin anywhere but the edge. Fingerprints alone may reduce the coin's grade and consequently its value. Handling on the edge only is mandatory when examining another person's coins, regardless of grade. Get in the habit of picking up collectible coins by their edges, and it will soon become routine.

Avoid holding numismatic items in front of your mouth. Small particles of moisture may eventually cause spots.

When setting a coin down outside of a holder is necessary, place it on a clean, soft surface. A velvet pad is an ideal surface and essential for regular handling of valuable material. A clean soft cloth or clean piece of blank paper may be sufficient for less valuable items. Do not drag coins across any surfaces.

If you will be handling very valuable coins or lots of uncirculated and/or higher grade circulated coins, wearing clean white cloth or surgical gloves and a mask may be advisable.