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nickels and pennies

Discussion in 'Preparedness & Survival' started by alexcassidy, May 8, 2011.

  1. alexcassidy

    alexcassidy WA New Member

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    does it seem worth while to be saving nickels, considering they are made of mostly silver? same thing with pennies pre-1982 aren't those mostly copper? or do you think they are so small it wouldn't make a difference?
     
  2. caden08

    caden08 washougal Member

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    Coinflation.com and you would need a sh*t ton of pennies to make it worth while since copper spot is below $4 a pound. As for nickels they are not minted with silver anymore. If you have pre 65 nickels then yes they are worth keeping...
     
  3. trainsktg

    trainsktg Portland OR Well-Known Member

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    All nickels, since their introduction in the 19th century, with the exception of a few years during WWII… are made up of NICKEL, not silver. Hense the name 'nickel'. There are no 'pre 1965' silver nickels per se (with the exception of the aforementioned WWIIs) as there are with dimes, quarters, half dollars and dollars.

    The melt value of pre 1982 pennies and all nickels is worth more than their face value. However it is currently ILLEGAL to melt US coinage that is in circulation, so the point is somewhat moot. Still, I save them when I run across them in change.

    To see what all US coinage, and some foreign, is worth in melt value, see Current Melt Value Of Coins - How Much Is Your Coin Worth?

    Keith
     
  4. alexcassidy

    alexcassidy WA New Member

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    coinflation.com says all nickels 1946-2011 have 75/25 copper/silver content, so just some silver, still maybe its not a bad idea to set em aside.. also nickels 1942-1945 have 35% silver
     
  5. jbett98

    jbett98 NW Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I had a roommate thirty five years ago that would buy bags of penny's, nickel's, dimes, quarters and half / whole dollars from his bank every payday and sift through them on Friday night looking for the silver and collectable coins.
    I thought it was a big waste of time.
    I, on the other hand, was spending my paycheck down at the local bar trying to pickup chicks.
    On Monday he would turn in the culled coins back in to the bank. He predicted that some day silver coins would be worth the effort.
     
  6. caden08

    caden08 washougal Member

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    Alex the ratio is 75/25 copper/nickel not silver. American coins in circulation are no longer minted with silver.

    and I was mistaken it is 1942-1945 nickels that have silver, not pre 65'
     
  7. trainsktg

    trainsktg Portland OR Well-Known Member

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    Yes, reread the percentages. (It can be confusing.) All nickels since the introduction of the 'Shield Nickel' in 1866 through those minted in 2011 (except WWII years '42 through '45) have maintained a 25% nickel, 75% copper ratio.

    The nickel is the only US coin that hasn't been debased by substituting zinc, etc.

    Keith
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2011
  8. Retread

    Retread Not to far from Salem, OR Member

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    I put my change in a jar at the end of every day, and take it to the bank every few months, usually $70 worth or so. Then I started putting all my nickels and pennies older than 1983 in different jars. Every six months or so my grandson and I put the pennies and nickels into rolls. I am astonished how quickly they add up. If SHTF it would be nice to have something of value worth less than a silver dime (today $2.73) for trade.
     
  9. kenno

    kenno eastern WA Active Member

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    Copper is now selling at $35 a pound
    weigh 10 pennys and do the math
     
  10. shooter

    shooter Ridgefield Member

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    Kitco has copper at $3.99/lb today.
     
  11. caden08

    caden08 washougal Member

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    Copper has been hovering around $4 a pound. It's about a 250% over face value of a penny. To bad it's illegal to melt a penny.
     
  12. kenno

    kenno eastern WA Active Member

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    Whoops! I missed a decimal point or two!
     
  13. kenno

    kenno eastern WA Active Member

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    The "Thing" about industralial metals,, there must be industry to drive the price. Even silver is an industrial metal. Gold transends industry, art, economys. Gold is hard to find, hard to refine,and needed: if only because everyone agrees it is good to have alot of gold,,,,,,
     
  14. Thebastidge

    Thebastidge 10411 NE Fourth Plain Blvd Vancouver WA 98662 Well-Known Member

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    Actually, that's not really the case. Gold, copper and silver (and lead, but it's toxic) were the first metals we learned how to use, because they all exist in relatively pure form in nature, they are soft and malleable at relatively low temperatures (think beaten into shape rather than cast) and because they are attractive: polished silver and copper are just as pretty as gold. The one advantage to gold is that it doesn't tarnish like the other two. Gold is also used in industrial processes these days, not as much as copper or silver, but only because it's much more expensive and people prefer it for other purposes. But go price out an audio/video cable from Monster cables....

    Copper, silver, and lead are often found mixed in the same mine. Refining them to very pure form can be expensive, yes.

    Even today, a lot of jewelry is made of silver or copper. Copper lost most of its precious metals value because it became pretty easy to manufacture things out of it. Aluminum was once (a blink in historical time) more precious than gold, because it's VERY difficult to refine without a great deal of electricity. Some gifts given to Napoleon Bonaparte included a baby spoon made of aluminim, much richer than a silver spoon at the time. It simply doesn't exist in nature in pure forms. At one point, lost in the mists of time before the knowledge of smelting, Iron would have been as valuable as gold because it was much more rare (iron in nature is rarely pure except from meteorites.)

    Coins have always been made of gold, copper, and silver, and often enough of diluted copper: brass (copper and zinc) or bronze (copper and tin). Sometimes even of iron or tin by itself.

    Gemstones have problems as a medium of exchange because grading them for quality is relatively subjective and fairly diffult, where metals can have a fairly precise purity and weight assigned to them by anybody with a scale and the ability to measure volume.

    If they start lopping zeroes off the greenback, copper pennies may come back into vogue when it all really crashes.
     
  15. Camtender

    Camtender SE Portland Member

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    Closed
     
  16. riverrat373

    riverrat373 Washington State Member

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    The only nickels that had silver in them were minted during WW2.