I have been an avid reader of Coin World for more than a half
century and I remain greatly inspired by the many columns written by
my fellow contributors to this great publication.
Gerald Tebben’s “Coin Lore” column published in the July 15 issue
of Coin World points out a relationship between cars and coins to
which I would like to make a few tiny additions.
In his excellent column, Tebben pointed out that a “Porsche 959
will go 200 mph — a lot faster than you can roll an 1893-CC Morgan dollar.”
While that may be true for a coin as large as a silver dollar, he
must never have seen me open a roll of cents in such a way that the
coins go flying through the air and rolling across the floor.
Not only do the coins approach the speed of sound as they scatter
in every direction, they also manage to find their ways under and
behind the largest and heaviest pieces of furniture in my home.
And they multiply too. Fifty cents in cents can seem like a
thousand coins when you try to find where they ultimately landed after
the kinetic energy of each coin has dissipated.
I actually ended up discovering this month’s find under the
refrigerator, from a roll of cents that scattered as I opened it up.
First, back to the car-coin connection for a moment.
The acronym RPM is used in both the automotive and numismatic worlds.
In the automotive industry the term RPM or revolutions per minute
is used when referring to a motor vehicle’s engine speed. RPMs
indicate the number of revolutions or rotations the crankshaft in an
engine experiences in one minute.
In numismatics, an RPM is a type of die variety known as a
repunched Mint mark.
Prior to about 1990, Mint marks were punched into working dies by
hand. A mallet and a Mint mark punch were used, and it usually took
more than one tap of the mallet in conjunction with the punch to
successfully add a Mint mark to a die.
Any movement of the punch between the taps of the mallet would
cause the resulting Mint mark to show doubling, tripling or even more strikes.
The fantastic repunched Mint mark on the 1960-D Lincoln cent shown
here reveals a clear separation between portions of the two D Mint
marks. I describe this as a D/D West since the secondary Mint mark
appears to the left or west of the primary D.
Always be sure to check the smaller details on each coin that you
examine and you might be able to find some neat RPMs too.
Bill O’Rourke is a collector who has spent the past several years
searching coin rolls in
pursuit of his hobby.