Article by:

Bill Snyder
News

World Mints Deface Coins With “Waffle Designs”

Mints around the world have been cancelling (defacing) coins for many years with a “waffle design.” They have defaced coins that have been withdrawn from circulation for their metal content.

They have done it when they are revaluing the coinage and also to create scrap from damaged and obsolete coins.









The usual method has been to convey and crush the unwanted coins through heavy steel rollers. The rollers emboss a deep design into the coins. The intent is to let everyone know that these pieces have no value. That they are not “Coins of the Realm.”

Usually, the impressed designs have taken the shape of straight, parallel lines; sometimes as close as 1mm apart. In one case, rather than parallel lines, a concentric circle pattern was used.



No matter how hard they try (press) though, official World Mints haven’t been able to totally keep these interesting pieces away from the public.

Many countries including those in the European Monetary Union are using equipment that is manufactured in the Netherlands to cancel and deface coins. The machinery crushes obsolete coins with various “waffle designs” that circulated in Europe before the introduction of the Euro. Damaged and mis-struck coins are also being destroyed.

The two Romanian coins featured below had all the ear-marks of being mint errors (partial brockages). Obviously the coins had been defaced. My assumption was that the heavy lines were the result of the Mint destruction of mis-struck coins.

One of these Romanian coins had been put through the crushing rollers twice. Upon closer examination, I realized that these were not mint error coins that the Mint “caught”. The Partial Brockage effect came about when these pieces were being defaced. Simulated partial brockages were produced on those coins which lay partly over another coin in the crushing machine. I had it backwards. These are not errors made at the time the coins were being made, but oddities made as the coins were being destroyed!






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