What is Junk Silver

Junk Silver is used to describe pre-1965 silver U.S. dimes, quarters, halves and dollar coins. These coins contain a whopping 90% pure silver and can be found in your pocket change.
With silver trading at record highs, now is the time to get into junk silver!


Junk Silver Blog: Easy Ways To Get Junk Silver Below Spot!

Receiving or finding a junk silver U.S. coin is far more fun than going to the coin or jewelry store and buying them, isn't it? It is for me, so I have my secret ways of finding junk silver that I want to share with you. Some may already be known, but it's fun to discuss this with other junk silver fans like me.

Coinstar - I have promoted this for years and I can't get to every Coinstar machine so check this tip out. Coinstar rejects junk silver coins. Not only have a found silver in the return slot, I gambled not once, but twice(!) with a 1952 silver Roosevelt dime to prove it. Coinstar machines are found in most grocery stores and from personal observation, weekends seem to be the time when more people dump their change off at Coinstar. With over 12,000 Coinstar locations, there are probably ten or more machines near you right now. Next Sunday or Saturday afternoon, make an excuse to visit a few locations and see what turns up. (If you are smart, bring a small kid with you who does not mind getting on the floor and looking under the machine!)

Bank or Credit Union - I ask every time I visit the credit union if they have any halves in the drawer I could purchase. While most banks are savvy enough to know that the old coins have silver, many over look the 1964 Kennedy (because that version of the half is still in circulation) and 1965-1969 versions which contain 40% silver. I have purchased, at face value, one 1964 and seven 40% halves over the past year this way.

Take change, please - Spend cash on all small purchases. When receiving your change, ask the cashier for 2-3 dollars in quarters or dimes. Tell them you have to do laundry if you want to be sneaky. Do this a few times a week and silver will turn up.

Put an ad in the local shopper paper - Greensheet, Thrify Nickle, etc are cheap places to put ads like this "Need cash? I buy coin collections. Call 555-1234". Sure, you will get some calls from people wanting to sell state quarter collections, but there will be some good deals out there. (Hint: Never buy anything for more than face value). Please, don't rip off some old, naive person if you do this. However, many coin collections are sold by bum relatives who received them in inheritances, as gifts or divorce settlements and could care less about their real value.

There are ways to get junk silver for less than spot, but it takes some work, creativity and a little shoe leather. Good hunting!


Junk Silver: Roll Searching

These days, most silver investors who are banking on junk silver, build their investment portfolio through purchases at coin stores, eBay or other online, reputable coin and precious metal dealers. Very few will tell you that searching for coins at stores or in pocket change is a reliable way to get pre-1964 junk silver coins.

A number of silver enthusiasts continue to do the old standby of  "roll hunting" and are slowly,  but steadily increasing their junk silver holdings at face value.

It works like this; go to your local bank or credit union and ask a box of halves. Typically, a coin roll hunter will order $100 - 500.00 in halves which the bank will have to order as well and have shipped in to the bank. The buyer picks up the halves and the fun begins.

Coin roll hunters will sit down and unroll each roll searching for silver coins. First they hold up the unwrapped roll and identify those coins with silver rims - those are easy. After going through all the rolls, they start checking the individual dates and pull halves dated between 1965 and 1970. These coins have 40% silver content and are worth collecting as well.

Afterward, the coin hunter rolls the halves back up, returns them to the bank and deposits them into their account. Sometimes, coin rollers will use the leftover coins to order and pay for more halves. Rinse and repeat.

Roll hunters will tell you to focus on halves and not quarters or dimes as those rolls were "mined" long ago - quarters and dimes are circulated more often than halves so the silver gets picked out sooner. Halves on the other hand have a low circulation rate so the rolls can pay off.

Some roll hunters are complaining that the returns on roll hunting are dropping each year as silver increases in value. Others say that the economy has more people dumping their coin jars and collections into the bank and that has the silver coin supply experiencing a "bump" in old coins returning to circulation.

Remember, if coin roll hunting, you can't lose any money on this pursuit as you are paying face value for the halves. Also, you can always use the leftover coins for small purchases. Good luck!
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