Monthly Archives: October 2011

Custom Coins – All You Need To Know

Liberty Manor Challenge CoinCustom coins originated from military challenge coins, which were used by various armed forces units to identify members when challenged by sentries. Today, custom challenge coins from the military, sports teams and organizations are prized by collectors and traders from all over the country. A healthy market has grown around these items, along with trading pins and cards. By knowing more about challenge coins and other custom coins, you can freely trade pieces from your own collection or have your own minted at the best possible prices.

Custom coins are usually made from enamels plated with metals or alloys, such as gold color, brass plating and similar substances. Using challenge coins for trading or collecting can be enhanced by knowledge about each set’s background, including the history of the unit, the details about the minting and the previous owners of the coin. Among challenge coins, custom military coins have the longest history and possess some of the most valuable pieces in the industry.

Trading Coins Emerges Into Popular Hobby

Custom challenge coins are mostly traded these days online in forums and other communities. Levels of participation and knowledge among these groups vary from novice to experts. Experienced custom coin traders know to trade only with reliable members of these communities, or when trading with a stranger, to research his background, particularly his reputation with other coin collectors. Trading is assisted with online payment and secure shipping services. Collectors can also trade using auction websites and classified ads, though the reliability of sellers through these channels is less reliable than existing communities. When trading online, always choose a clear, large image of your custom coin from both sides to allow other parties to evaluate it. The image should also be accompanied with a ruler to objectively determine its dimensions. Finally, collectors can show up during military-themed conventions or collector’s fair, where they can meet other enthusiasts. These places are also popular venues for community members who wish to transact face to face. Professional coin shops and armed forces stores also exhibit in these events to launch new custom coins or sell sets and pieces to attendees.

Designing Custom Coins

To make custom coins for your sports team or organization, you need to come up with a design first. The best custom coin designs respect the lack of space for reach tiny surface and will contain only a few elements that evoke the spirit of the team. The colors are commonly limited to three of four which identities the group, and the name, title and slogan of the team are indicated on the coin. Private minters have the ability to print and color in small surfaces using precise machinery, as well as presses and mold to form odd- or irregular-shaped coins. You can design coins with precious metals incorporated in the image, such as gold or silver, or simple metals such as copper and bronze. Unit crests, company logos and team mascots are common custom coin designs, although groups may release limited editions with specific designs to capture the spirit of a particular year or event. Designing unique elements, such as recessed areas, have added distinction in existing coins and may be used in future designs.

Minting A Coin

Military Challenge Coins

After designing a custom coin, you should contact several manufacturers in your area to create, or mint, a limited number of pieces with your design. These private mints have the equipment to create coins, medallions, medals and other metal pieces with fine precision and precious metals. Use online search engines to locate such mints and email them the image of your design as well as the specifications, including the type of metal, the number of pieces to produced and thickness. If in doubt with the reliability of the mints you find, do a background check based on reviews from other customers who have done business with them. These mints will then send quotes for minting and their other terms. Avail of discounts and promos if possible to make the most of your budget. Choose a mint that suits your budget and specifications. Challenge Coins Limited is known for their work on custom coins and are well worth approaching for minting possibilities. Finalize the agreement by settling on the price, payment method, shipping date and method. Ask for a return guarantee in case they send defective coins or an amount that is less than agreed upon. Always ask for more coins than you need, as there will always be a market for these items. You can also consider having other memorabilia to be minted with your design on it, such as medallions, gold coins and even knives.

Distributing and Selling

Once you receive your custom challenge coins, distribute them among the members of your group. The rest of the coins can be sold to collectors, traders and other interested parties. They may also be presented to special individuals as gifts for their contributions to the group. Bring some of the custom coins when attending special events or conventions and use them for collecting coins from other groups. You may either opt to mint only one standard design or different designs for every year or event, which can be also prized by collectors.

Storing Your Challenge Coins

Prized coins are rarely exposed for public perusal, as pollutants in the air and the risks of scratches from handling will inevitably affect the alloys and substances in the coin. Custom coins are usually kept in special storage boxes and stored away from light, heat and moisture, all of which can deteriorate the coin. You may also keep your coins in a special album that allows for viewing multiple items with every page. Some albums to consider are the Intercept Shield, which has a solid design that protects the contents, the Dansco, a popular album format, and the US Mint series, the official album format of the government agency. Cleaning is usually done with soft wipes and especially safe solutions that will not chemically interact with the metals. With careful handling and maintenance, your personalized coins will lose little of its value and may even appreciate as time passes by.

Custom Military Challenge Coin Bottle Openers

By now you probably know that custom challenge coins can be made in any form, shape, size or finish. Did you know that many of our custom coins are also minted as challenge coin bottle openers? As military challenge coins spread to more private applications – as giveaways, rewards, membership icons – our customers are looking for new and innovative ways to make their coins functional and unique. One way is to have a piece made that actually serves as a bottle opener. They are quite the conversation starter!

GTI Challenge Coin Bottle Opener

Our artists are highly trained – not only in design – but the actual mechanics of what makes a challenge coin bottle opener function. We have seen too many times companies attempt to manufacture a custom coin bottle opener using improper design specifications. A likeness would be making a tool which is flawed in design and doesn’t do the job its intended to do. Many factors come into play with such custom pieces, including bevel, thickness and opening width.

Military Challenge Coin Bottle Openers

With all this in mind, our customers know that Challenge Coins Limited is an industry leader in custom coins – to include special function items like bottle openers. We take your logo and form it into a coin that will open any bottle, any time, over and over again without fail. Some people don’t actually use their coins to crack open a beer, but simply as a display piece – and that’s fine too…but you can rest assured that it will do its intended job if called upon.

Custom Bottle Opener CoinAntique Silver Plated Bottle Opener Challenge Coin

We can produce as little as fifty (50) custom challenge coin bottle openers at your request. We offer completely free design work before you pay us a single penny. We want you to be ecstatic with your coins before you submit payment…it’s just how we do things. Our team of six expert artists collaborates on a regular basis to offer our customers the latest in design trends and techniques. What this all means to you is once your coins arrive, your smile will be as wide as the State of Texas.

Give us a call today at 1-800-818-3229 – we make ordering challenge coins of ANY type very easy.

Superior Military Challenge Coins Start With Great Artwork

Military Challenge Coin Discounts

What really makes a coin great starts long before you get them in your hands. When a good-looking custom coin catches your eye, it is the result of expert design work by artists with years of training in graphic arts. Using the latest computer programs and actually being creative, custom military challenge coins are designed around the capabilities of the actual manufacturing process.

411th Military Police Company Coins
Challenge Coin Bottle Opener
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Military Command Coins 2

3D Challenge Coins

Coin Designs US Army

Get Your Free Coin Design And Quote Today

Liberty Manor Challenge Coin

Top quality challenge coins are made by a process called “striking” – similar to that used to make currency coins. A base metal, which is normally brass, copper, or bronze, is “struck” by a die that is created from the artists rendering of your coin. It is this die that makes all the difference in the world when it comes to how good your coin looks.

Basically, our artists are not only showing you what your custom coins will look like once produced, but they are also constructing a template for the die to be created before your custom challenge coins go to mint. Without high quality artwork, you would never really know what your coins will turn out like! Despite what you may have heard elsewhere…artwork simply matters. A proof from one coin company that is very basic does nothing for the customer as far as confidence goes. At Challenge Coins Limited, our graphic designers have perfected their techniques to show you exactly what your coins will look like before you spend any money.

Would you order a car based on a half-hearted sketch of what it “may” turn out to look like once it hits the showroom? We didn’t think so.

Military Coins

We are often asked why we do so much work ahead of a customer placing an actual order with us. The answer is simple – customer satisfaction. There should be no surprises when that heavy box containing your challenge coins arrive. You have spent good money and trusted a company to produce something special for your military unit, sports team, club, or company presentation – and you want the best.


Hawaii US Custom CoinsWhen comparing one challenge coin company to another, take a good hard look at the artwork they provided you. Which one looks like a “real” coin? I can’t tell you how many calls we get from people who have inquired with us and received their coin proof asking, “Did you guys already make the coin?!?!” The fact of the matter is our artwork blows the competition away…and that, ladies and gentlemen, translates into a great challenge coin.

Before you get excited about seeing artwork of your custom designed challenge coins from various companies, you have to realize that not all of them offer you free artwork. That’s right…they charge you for it. In some cases upwards of $175.00 upfront. Well….what if you don’t like the way your artwork looks? Remember – it is crucial that your artwork look spectacular to produce a quality piece. While we respect the way any company decides to run their operation, we don’t believe that this is the best practice to take with a custom product. Each and every coin inquiry we get receives free artwork with unlimited changes to your design until you are happy.

Challenge Coins Limited has been recognized repeatedly for their superior design and manufacturing. We simply won’t design custom coins that we know can’t be produced at a high grade level on the factory end. Call us toll-free for a no-obligation consultation.

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