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To Paint or not to paint

Finding a counterfeit coin is always interesting, especially as a numismatist! Your mind immediately starts filtering through a checklist of questions: “Who? What? When? How? Why… was this coin made?” Finding damaged coins can also inspire a series of similar thoughts: “How did this happen to the coin? Why do people do such mean things to nice coins? Railroad tracks? Why?” We already know that a coin’s journey through circulation is never boring. Damaged coins and counterfeits just add to the story.

During my time as a collector/dealer/hoarder of all things silver, I have laid eyes on some interesting counterfeits. With the large amount of modern fakes out there and today’s unique market - having a good eye for “what is good” vs. “what is bad” can really end up saving you money.

All this leads me to a time of “show and tell!” I have attached photos of three counterfeit coins and one damaged coin. These particular coins came into my possession over a span of seven years from various collections I’ve purchased.

It is a Federal offense to sell a counterfeit coin. Who would anyway? And even though damaged coins can be sold for base metal, I usually end up keeping them. So what do I end up doing with these problematic coins you ask? Well… I give them new life and create something pleasant!

For my personal enjoyment between spending time with my family, buying coin collections, and Vegas trips… I paint coins. Yes! I paint them. First three coins are early silver dollar fakes. 8 reales. Not even silver. Then you see the beloved Four Queen Silver Strike. Someone damaged this Strike with what looked like sand paper or a jewelers wheel. The last image is my next canvas. Unfortunately, the original design has lifted and chipped away. Not sure what will take the place of the gorgeous WWII Bomber girl but I’m confident I can make it sweet! Any suggestions

Take care


Dean Cugliotta

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