Coin Roll Hunting

We thought we hit the coin roll hunting jackpot.

A cursory Google search revealed that our buffalo nickel was worth $6,300. Our hands stung from high-fives. A living room dance was underway.

When we arrived at the jeweler for pay day, his response: “Keep it. It’s worth about 20 cents.”

I learned a few things about coin roll hunting after sorting through some coins this past weekend.

For one, the condition of the coin matters. Perhaps if our buffalo nickel had been uncirculated or AU, it might have brought in a few dollars.

Next, mint location cannot be overlooked. For example, the 1776-1976 “S” half-dollar pieces are 40% silver; the others (“D” or unmarked) are only worth face value.

Finally, coin roll hunting is a real hobby. There are sites devoted to its best practices. Hobbyists often buy rolls of coins at face value from Bank A and then sell them back to Bank B, selling the valuables to jewelers or keeping them for their collection. They also scope out the rejects from Coinstar machines. Apparently, the machines won’t accept anything made with silver, so unsuspecting folks will often leave their machine rejects in the “reject” tray.

Coin roll hunting is a good hobby. I’m thinking of trying it out. I like the idea of searching for treasure — especially while watching for boats out my window.

Thanks for reading! If you liked this post, you might like this one about watching for boats with MarineTraffic.

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