What’s in your coin collecting toolkit?
You don’t need a lot of specialized equipment to get started as a coin collector, but there are a few key tools that can help you appreciate and protect your coins. Here are the top ones to have in your toolkit:
A magnifying glass
Coins are small and can be extremely detailed: a magnifying glass with at least 7x magnification will reveal all the intricacies of your favourite designs.
A record-keeping solution
Whether you use simple index cards or a purpose-built app, it’s important to have some way of tracking what’s in your collection, where you bought each coin, and where and how they’re stored—especially if you decide to sell your coins at any point or want to insure your collection.
A storage solution
Coins can be damaged by light, extreme temperatures, humidity, and even air. There are lots of ways to store coins safely: whatever you choose, make sure you’re using a product that’s designed specifically for coins.
Oil and dirt from hands can damage coins, so try as much as possible to avoid touching them. That said, sometimes you’ll need to handle them, which is why cotton gloves are indispensable. Use them only for your coins, and keep them clean and dry when you’re not using them.
A reference source
Chances are, you’ll want to learn more about the coins in your collection, the coins you might like to add to your collection and coin collecting in general. A good reference book or reputable website will keep you informed and deepen your knowledge.
More advanced tools
The tools described above should cover most of your coin collecting needs. For very serious collectors, there are a few other must-haves:
- Coin cleaning solutions to keep your coins free of dirt
- Coin tongs or finger cots for dipping coins into cleaning solutions
- Measuring tools such as calipers and a digital scale for assessing coins, especially older ones that may not come with detailed specifications
- More powerful magnifying devices such as loupes to bring you even closer to the details of the coins you love