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Is this1977-D gold plated silver cent domestic or foreign?.

I had this LMC laying around for a couple yrs. I finally took a good look at it, and I could see it was plated heavy with gold. So I weighed it and it 3.19 gm. So I took it to my local PCGs authorized dealer and had it checked. It's silver underneath the gold. Well if it's domestic, it's got almost 7 tenths of a gm of gold on it, and if it's foreign then I'm not sure. Can anyone help me figure this out?.


  • If these pics aren't good enough I will try to make them better.

  • OldhoopsterOldhoopster Posts: 2,930 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited September 28, 2021 11:49AM

    It was gold plated by someone after it left the mint. The silver layer underneath may be a strike layer (nickel?) that is first plated to the copper cent and helps the gold stick better. Nice novelty piece but nothing more. Sorry

    BTW. The specified weight range for a copper cent is 2.98-3.24 grams. Your coin could have originally been anywhere in that range, so you can't assume it has 0.08 grams of gold.

    Member of the ANA since 1982
  • I'm not sure that the plating is that thin. I'm sure my pics aren't doing this coin any justice, but it is heavy heavy plated. It's not just a thin sprayed on coat.

  • lcutlerlcutler Posts: 465 ✭✭✭✭

    the coin is only 8 hundredths of a gram overweight. Some of that weight is surely the base coat under the gold, but even if all the extra weight is gold, that is only a little over 4 dollars worth. It would cost more to try to recover the gold than it is worth. Just a plated novelty coin, no real value.

  • No you got me wrong, im not trying to recover the gold from the coin, I'm trying to figure out if the silver planchet under the coin is domestic or foreign. See this is why people don't like coming on sites like this and C C. People come looking for real help and answers and all you guys have for us is to slam us down and look for everything negative instead of taking a real look at both possibilities and trying to come to a real answer. Later peace out.

  • lcutlerlcutler Posts: 465 ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 28, 2021 2:00PM

    Sorry, your question was not clear at all. I don't think anyone is slamming you down, just trying to answer your question as it was written. When coins are plated, they often have a layer of other metal applied first, that is what you are seeing under the gold. Silver is quite a lot heavier than copper, your coin is too light to be silver. It is exactly the right weight for a normal copper cent that has had a little extra weight added from plating. If you don't like the answers you received here, then by all means, send it in to PCGS for verification. Just make sure it is money you are willing to lose.

  • JBKJBK Posts: 14,233 ✭✭✭✭✭

    It is not silver underneath. If you see silver it is the underplate necessary for a good electroplate of the gold. If the dealer used a device then he was picking up that layer.

    The mint was not striking silver coins that size in the 1970s. It is not a wrong planchet error.

    And if for some reason it was struck in silver, why would it then have been gold plated?

    People here have seen these coins. They are gold-plated novelties. Just because you don't like the truth is no reason to criticize people here.

    It seems that you want people to confirm your unreasonable speculations. This is definitely not the place to go for that.

  • OldhoopsterOldhoopster Posts: 2,930 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I don't understand your question. Domestic or foreign silver??

    To repeat, you have a normal 1977D cent that an outside company gold plated. You used to find ads in the back of magazines offer sets of gold plated coins. Gold plating the State Quarters and selling over priced sets was also very popular.

    The silver layer you see is the nickel strike layer. A nickel layer is initially plated onto the copper surface, then the gold is plated onto the nickel. Here is some additional info on gold plating


    I'm sorry you feel that way about this group. You were given factual information. It's a normal cent that was plated. There really isn't another possibilty. Something like that can't occur during the minting process.

    I would recommend sticking around and continue to build your numismatic knowledge. There are lots of knowledgeable people who are willing help others.

    Member of the ANA since 1982
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