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Where to get good coins for magic?

Dec 22, 2019
169
68
Hello everyone! After some months of postponing, I finally decided to get started with coin magic. I’d like to get 4 or 5 walking liberty half dollars, but I don’t know where to buy them. Do you have any favourite websites?
Also, I would like to know your opinion on the best grade of condition for doing moves. Should I go for a smoother F (fine) or for a VF (Very Fine) or EF (Extremely Fine) with sharper edges that might aid palming? Or does it not matter?
Thanks In advance!
 

JoshL8

Elite Member
Aug 5, 2017
343
342
WA state USA
Coins! Neato. Basically the best coins are ones that for your hands well. Its easier for me with some routines to use a coin that’s in between a US half and Dollar size but such coins aren’t that common. Most magicians like US 50 cent pieces because of their size and many coins from other countries also have the same size.
Where to buy? I’ve bought silver coins from coin shops or pawn shops, but just to let you know silver prices jumped around March 2020 due to the pandemic. I used to get walking liberties for 7 or 8 dollars each, now people are asking near 10. The price has historically been as low as 12 bucks an ounce and up into the 30s. It’s in the mid 20s now, you can try to wait it out if you are buying bulk. 4 or 5 coins will be a few dollars less if you wait, not a huge deal…but if you are buying rolls…

Which coin grade is best? Lots of magicians like ‘soft’ coins that are smooth, they make less sound and stick together better which helps with some moves. You can often buy Barber Halves that are really smooth, usually 10 to 15 dollars a coin. You can get some walking liberties that are ‘cull’ coins that are smooth too. Some cull coins don’t have dates because they wore off, and those coins usually go cheaper because they are just sold for the silver content.
Nice edges certainly help palming, its not absolutely necessary but it does help. You can find some gaff makers who offer milled edges on the soft coins they sell, if given the choice I personally like it…but again it’s not a dealbreaker for me.
You can also buy coins from gaff makers like Roy Kueppers if you are wanting a matching set.

Also, while silver coins are cool and add a touch of professionalism to your appearance…learn to use regular US quarters! A decent coins across or matrix using quarters and you will always have an impromptu trick that can be done with other peoples money.
 

DavidL11229

Elite Member
Jul 25, 2015
522
276
Seattle
I just get coins off Ebay, though it can take some work to get ones that match for a good price. Get some pretty worn ones, they make less noise and are less expensive. You should try a Barber too, they are quite different and you might like them better.

If you want nice sharp edges you will have to get Kennedys (or have them milled as mentioned above), though worn silver coins seem to palm better than the worn modern ones so it's not as big a deal. I haven't tried the silver 64 Kennedys, just the newer ones. I got some that said uncirculated, but were not so I now only get the sealed ones. I like the Denver ones, they seem to have better edges.
 
Jul 26, 2016
573
796
Coins! Neato. Basically the best coins are ones that for your hands well. Its easier for me with some routines to use a coin that’s in between a US half and Dollar size but such coins aren’t that common. Most magicians like US 50 cent pieces because of their size and many coins from other countries also have the same size.
Where to buy? I’ve bought silver coins from coin shops or pawn shops, but just to let you know silver prices jumped around March 2020 due to the pandemic. I used to get walking liberties for 7 or 8 dollars each, now people are asking near 10. The price has historically been as low as 12 bucks an ounce and up into the 30s. It’s in the mid 20s now, you can try to wait it out if you are buying bulk. 4 or 5 coins will be a few dollars less if you wait, not a huge deal…but if you are buying rolls…

Which coin grade is best? Lots of magicians like ‘soft’ coins that are smooth, they make less sound and stick together better which helps with some moves. You can often buy Barber Halves that are really smooth, usually 10 to 15 dollars a coin. You can get some walking liberties that are ‘cull’ coins that are smooth too. Some cull coins don’t have dates because they wore off, and those coins usually go cheaper because they are just sold for the silver content.
Nice edges certainly help palming, its not absolutely necessary but it does help. You can find some gaff makers who offer milled edges on the soft coins they sell, if given the choice I personally like it…but again it’s not a dealbreaker for me.
You can also buy coins from gaff makers like Roy Kueppers if you are wanting a matching set.

Also, while silver coins are cool and add a touch of professionalism to your appearance…learn to use regular US quarters! A decent coins across or matrix using quarters and you will always have an impromptu trick that can be done with other peoples money.

This was very informative. Thank you! And excellent advice!
 
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