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October, 2005
Year 12, Issue 10

Award Winning Newsletter

Meeting 7:30pm, Wednesday, Sept 7
Talk and trading 7:00-7:30pm
VFW, 1601 Weld Road, Elgin, IL

Not a member? Come and join us anyway!
Give your spouse a break and bring your children to the club.

October Program

This month's program will be a video about the shipwreck and salvage of the USS Republic.


August Minutes

ECC Meeting 571
Opened:   7:30     Closed:   8:35
Members:   18     YNs:   0
Guests:   2         
Beginning balance:   $216.23     Income:   $158.00
Expenses:   $142.50     Current balance:   $231.73

Steve called the meeting to order at 7:30. The Secretary's and Treasurer's reports were accepted as published. Old and new business was discussed and show and tells were given. The program was the club member's auction. Thanks to all who submitted items and the bidders. After the program, we took a break to sell raffle tickets and the drawings were held. The meeting adjourned about 9:00 PM.

Secretary's Report

Accepted as printed in September's newsletter.

Treasurer's Report

Balance:   $216.23.
The Treasurer's report was accepted.

Old Business

Fantasy coin contest

  1. Marty 31,000
  2. Debra 30,525
  3. Jim D. 29,500
  4. Bob L 27,500

Anyone wishing to join the game see Jim D. at the meeting.

New Business

We discussed how to raise funds for the club. Suggestions included raising dues, charging for the Christmas dinner, holding a super raffle and raising fees for next years coin show.


We had our customary raffle and membership drawings. The winners were:

The meeting closed around 8:35 P.M.

Submitted by Jim D.

Board Meeting

On September 14, Doug, Don, Jim and Steve met at Don's house to discuss club business and select prizes for June.

Submitted by Jim D. secretary


Show and Tell


This year's show. This month on the 30th, the club will hold its annual coin show. As you may know this is the main fund raising event for the club this year. Therefore, the club needs the help from all members to make this years show a success. You can help many ways. First, the club has asked the members to sell raffle tickets for the shows raffle. Tickets come in bundles of 30 and sell for 1.00 each or 5 for 5.00. If you need ticks to sell or need to turn in tickets already sold see Steve h. Other ways to help are staffing the front table, donating some items for the yn auction or assisting Steve with the yn auction. Any way you can help the club is greatly appreciated.

The 1854-S quarter eagle. A few months ago, a family out west discovered in their possessions an 1854-S quarter eagle. This coin has an original mintage of only 246 pieces and this new piece brings the known population up to 12. A few weeks ago, the coin sold at auction for $253,000 including buyer's premium. Not bad for a family heirloom.

Halloween. This year Halloween falls on the day after the coin show. What I plan on doing this year is the same as I did last year. I purchased a bag of cheap foreign coins and will make small packets of 15 coins or so to give out to trick or treaters. I also will have some candy available but when given a choice the kids usually pick the coins. Who knows, this may inspire some of them to become coin collectors.

Coin of the Month

1982 Lincoln cent varieties

This month's coins of the month are the varieties of the Lincoln cent issued in 1982. Spurred on by the rising price of copper the mint changed the composition of the Lincoln cent from a solid copper alloy to a solid zinc planchet plated with copper. This makes the new cents numismatic m&m's. The weight of the cent was also reduced from 3.11 grams to 2.5 grams. Just changing the metal composition would make plenty of varieties but the mint upped the ante by also creating a large and small date variety for most of the possible combinations. In copper the Philly mint issued both large and small date coins while the Denver mint only issued one variety. In the zinc alloy both the Denver and Philly mints issued large and small date coins.

The best way to tell a copper from a zinc coin is to use a gram scale. Since I do not have the money to spend on a gram scale I made a device that works just as well. This is also a fun project for yn's to do with proper adult supervision. The device is like a teeter-totter for coins and is easy to make. You need some corrugated cardboard, a drinking straw, a stapler that can open up for tacking and some tape. Cut a piece of cardboard 1.5 by 6 inches. Next measure 2 lines one in the middle (3 inches from the end) and the other 2.75 inches from one end. Cut the straw 1.5 inches long and tape it on the line 2.75 inches from the end. Now flip the cardboard over and tack a staple on the short end .25 inch from the end parallel to the short end. On the other end, tack a staple 1 inch from the end parallel to the short end. Pull up each staple slightly to form what looks like a croquet wicket. Place a common cent you know is solid copper (1970's cents work best) on the short end so it rests in the staple. This will drop down the one side. On the upper end place the coin, you want to test. If the coin is copper the test coin will make the end its on go down, if the coin is zinc the tester will not move. If this doesn't work, you may have to fine-tune the balance by slightly moving the straw either towards the middle or away from the middle.

This month's quiz

A bag of 5000 Lincoln cents weighs 13.415 kg's. Roughly how many are copper alloy and how many are zinc alloy? Assume all are post 1959 coins and all are mint state. Hint: copper cents = 3.11grams and zinc cents = 2.5 grams.


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This Newsletter is the informal mouthpiece of the Elgin Coin Club. This Newsletter and its contents are copyrighted but you may use anything herein (accept as noted below) for non-commercial use as long as you give credit to the Elgin Coin Club Newsletter. This blanket permission does not extend to articles specifically marked as copyrighted (c) by the author of the article. In the latter case, you must get explicit written permission from the author either directly or through the Newsletter to use that material.

The ideas expressed in the Newsletter are those of the article authors and not necessarily those of the Elgin Coin Club or its officers.


1500 copper and 3500 zinc. Assume all zinc then the weight is 12.50 kgs. This bag is 915 grams over that weight. The difference in weight is .61 grams. 915 grams divided by .61 grams per coin equals 1500 coins. 5000 coins minus 1500 copper coins equals 3500 zinc coins.