Common Mint Errors

Billions of coins are produced every year by the United States Mint and expecting no errors is impossible. However, error coins are commonly caught before entering circulation. There are many examples of mint error coins, but here are five common coin errors on record. Some collectors may be fortunate enough to own a mint error coin. If you come across an error coin, it might be worth more than you think. Because errors do not happen often, holding onto the coin may pay off in the future.

Examples of Common Mint Error Coins

  1. Off-Center Struck Coins. One of the most common of the error coins are the off-center struck coins. When the blank is fed into the press improperly, it strikes the coin improperly because the dies only strike the blank that are inserted in the press. Sometimes this causes an uneven strike of the coin, taking away from the round shape. 

  2. Wrong Planchet Errors or Denomination Errors. These errors occur when the wrong planchet from one coin is fed into a press designed for another denomination. Examples of this include a nickel struck on a planchet for dimes. The error coin that is struck on the wrong blank will bear the same weight as the coin that should have been struck correctly. 

  3. Double Struck Coins. After the planchet is struck by the die, the feeders eject the coin out of the collar. If the coin is not ejected, it can receive a second, or even more, strike. As a result, you will see multiple designs on the obverse and reverse. 

  4. Die Adjustment Strikes. These mint error coins occur when there is little pressure applied to the coin when it is struck. The result is a faded or sometimes unnoticeable design on the coin. Die adjustment strikes are one of the least-common error coins but they have been known to exist.  

  5. Strike-thru Error Coins. Strike-thru error coins occur when a foreign object like hair, grease, cloth or staples lie on top of the planchet before being struck. After striking, the object that was found in the planchet leaves an impression on the coin. (Jims Coin)

Many examples of mint error coins are available and there are more out there than we think. Minting coins by the billions is an imperfect process but the probability of errors is small. Mint error coins are in circulation but do not discard one if you come across it. It could be more valuable than you think. APMEX carries a wide variety of mint error coins at competitive prices.  


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