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Smoothing out banknotes

Can a banknote be smoothed of wrinkles and crimps without damaging?

A world without coins "Chaos"


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    Steve_in_TampaSteve_in_Tampa Posts: 1,819 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Sometimes, yes. I’ve had some success using a humidity chamber and pressure. Never use heat.

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    jackpine20jackpine20 Posts: 139 ✭✭✭✭

    A few years ago I bought a 1914 Federal Reserve Note on eBay. I'm a coin guy who dabbles in currency, but I could tell, something wasn't quite right. It was the flattest, smoothest, midgrade currency I had ever seen. Months later, I took it to my local coin shop to get a professional opinion. The first thing he did was smell it. "Yep, this has been ironed." He offered to buy it for what seemed to be a generous offer, given the circumstances. I accepted.

    Matt Snebold

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    StaircoinsStaircoins Posts: 2,565 ✭✭✭

    @Serial_no_8 said:

    Don't be so quick on the draw. As with so many things in life, the answer is 'it depends.'

    Here's one that I thought was awful ...


    That actually turned out not to be too bad ...


    It's a CSA Interim Deposit Receipt issued in San Antonio. This was deep in the Trans-Mississippi district, far from the center of Confederate finance. These receipts were issued by CSA Depositaries to folks who bought CSA bonds when there were no actual bond instruments available for issue. The receipt holder could bring this IDR back later and exchange it for the actual bond.

    The IDRs themselves were also sometimes negotiated at times when bonds were not available for extended periods.

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    StaircoinsStaircoins Posts: 2,565 ✭✭✭

    Heck, looks like I need a refresher on posting photos. :|

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    Steve_in_TampaSteve_in_Tampa Posts: 1,819 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Before and After photos from the above post by @Staircoins .
    Quite a transformation.

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    StaircoinsStaircoins Posts: 2,565 ✭✭✭
    edited January 29, 2022 12:19PM

    Thank you Steve!

    First pic is from the seller. Second scan is mine and is the true color.

    I used only a bone folder - no heat or moisture - and worked very slowly. Fortunately the paper was not brittle, only folded.

    It was a nice save.

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    gsalexgsalex Posts: 213 ✭✭✭
    edited February 5, 2022 9:09PM

    I'll offer up another illustration, although this is not apples-to-apples because the paper here is thicker than the example posted above. I picked up a pretty wrinkled bank check and decided to experiment. Since this was caused by water damage, all I did was dampen it using a spritzer bottle of water, then compress it in a heavy book overnight. I was happy with the results. But I would never iron a note as it flattens the raised ink of the engravings.

    Intrigued by all things intaglio.
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    StaircoinsStaircoins Posts: 2,565 ✭✭✭

    Nice results @gsalex.

    It's not often we get to see both before and after pics of an ethical restoration. Usually we only see the after effects of a botched job and have to guess what the piece looked like before, or could have been if handled properly.

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    Namvet69Namvet69 Posts: 8,670 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Nice job, I use a really thick unabridged dictionary just for this purpose. Peace Roy

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