Q&A- Australian coin with punched letters?

July 5, 2009



I hope you don't mind me emailing you. I was at the shops the other day and in my change I got give a 1973 50c with a 'V' stamped on it, to the right of the queen's head. I was wondering if this was a real mark and its purpose. I thought maybe it had something to do with the Vietman war (being 1973), or maybe the state of Victoria, or maybe it's just someone with nothing better to do stamping the letter V onto it!

Any thoughts?



Hi, Thanks for the email and for reading our weblog. Sadly these sorts of marks are what is known as post mint damage. They are applied with punches and hammers and given that it doesn't destroy the coin they'll keep circulating without most people even noticing the mark. Well done on noticing it yourself! Someone mentioned to me once that people in metal working shops would do this sort of thing to help train new apprentices and so on. I've also heard one other theory that vending machine makers and service agents mark coins so they can test out the coin feeding mechanisms and hoppers of their vending machines.

Yours is the first 50 cent I have seen or heard of marked in such a manner, typically $1 coins are the most common. As to it's worth, I have seen marked coins like this go for a little above face value on eBay but with listing fees and final value fees I wouldn't list it any time soon. It might be worth keeping as a curiosity. I keep them and as I type this stuck to the edge of the monitor in front of me there's a $2 coin that someone has punched 'sunglasses' onto the aboriginal on the reverse of the coin.

Please have a nice day,

The Australian Threepence Blog Team

Please note that in the interest of anonymity we always remove names so that we can share our questions and answers with everyone.

Posted by harrisk at July 5, 2009 5:29 PM
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