Last week Bob Leonard shared an article describing problems with the "eco-friendly" medals for the 2016 Rio Olympics. -Editor
John Regitko of Toronto, Canada writes:
I ran into a problem with the 2006 Canadian Numismatic Association presentation medals when I was chairman of the Convention. Following is a draft of one of the pages of the new book I am writing
on the history of the late Jack Veffer (your readers will probably know him best as the head S.O.B. Numismatist). Actually, it will be under the section dealing with unusual happenings to either Jack
or me. I previously published this in 2006 in my Eh-Bulletin.
Thanks! Here is John's writeup. -Editor
HOW THE COST OF NICKEL AFFECTED
THE 2006 CNA CONVENTION MEDAL
We keep hearing about the price of precious medals (i.e. gold and silver) going up and up. But did you know what havoc is caused when the price of non-precious medals goes up?
The advantage of producing medals from copper or nickel or the variations such as cupro-nickel or German silver, is its low cost and, therefore, its attractive selling price. It enables coin clubs
to produce souvenirs at an affordable cost.
When the price of non-precious metals goes up, you know what happens?
In one word: Recycling!
Nickel is actually being recycled by some manufacturers of blanks. To the naked eye, there is no difference in appearance from the old stock of non-recycled blanks.
The blanks are fed into the minting press and struck. To the naked eye, there is no difference in appearance from the medals struck with non-recycled blanks. It, therefore, makes no difference to
Those of you that know about metallurgy know that when you recycle nickel, it becomes a bit harder than during the original go-round. That is not a problem for the minting presses, as the pressure
of striking can be adjusted accordingly.
The only time the final appearance of a medal is affected is if the following factors come into play together:
a) the nickel is recycled
b) it is a uniface medal
c) the design on the one die is in 3D (which the medals were)
This affected a few of the medals presented at the 2006 C.N.A. Convention - the nickel presentation medals that were supposed to be presented to the second place winners in the competitive
displays could not be presented. Neither could the nickel presentation medals to members of various committees that volunteered to make the convention the success it was.
The blank side has the appearance of having acid stain the center part of the medal as if it was caused by a thumbprint, as well as an outline on a portion of the outside of the
"thumbprint" in the shape of a partial horseshoe. When the medal is engraved with a person's name and reason for the award, you can readily see the "thumbprint" and
"partial horseshoe." This is known in the industry as "ghosting."
We are told that a solution should be forthcoming shortly, at which time medals will be mailed to the recipients.
The required quantity of the uniface medals in nickel were restruck and nobody would know the difference looking at them. The 2-sided saleable convention medals in copper and silver were not
affected. Neither were the uniface medals in silver (which were awarded to 1st place competitive exhibitors in each category and other presentations, as well as to key convention committee members)
or in copper (3rd place competitive exhibitors in each category).
Here is my wife's presentation medal. As you can see, no evidence of any ghosting on the presentation side of this replacement medal.
As an "error" collector, too bad I didn't keep one of the defective nickel medals!
To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
PROBLEMS WITH RIO OLYMPICS ECO-FRIENDLY MEDALS (http://www.coinbooks.org/v20/esylum_v20n22a25.html)
Wayne Homren, Editor
The Numismatic Bibliomania Society is a non-profit organization
promoting numismatic literature. See our web site at coinbooks.org.
To submit items for publication in The E-Sylum, write to the Editor
at this address: email@example.com
To subscribe go to: https://my.binhost.com/lists/listinfo/esylum
Copyright © 1998 - 2020 The Numismatic Bibliomania Society (NBS)
All Rights Reserved.
NBS Home Page
Contact the NBS webmaster