Stamping coins? Pirate chest.


Sr Member
I have an old chest that I restored as well as hundreds of gold and silver hardware samples. Yes they've got holes in them but I'm just trying to create the illusion of a pirate chest with lots of stuff. I'd like to create a stamp that I can hammer and imprint into them. I'm thinking about just getting a piece of metal bar stock and using my Dremel to grind out a pattern; maybe pirates of the Caribbean. And then just smashing an imprint into them. Any ideas?


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Kinda' depends on what those blanks are make of.

Your die needs to be harder than the blank material.
If the blanks are aluminum, copper or soft brass, they should be easy to stamp.
If they are steel, good luck getting much of an image before your die flattens out.
Look up medieval coin striking on YouTube.
Based on the one photo of your samples, it does not look promising, they look plated, and when you strike them the plating will be cracked or blown off completely. As said above, you will need to harden the steel striking die, and soften the blanks, otherwise your die will not last more than a couple of strikes, and the impressions will be very shallow. Unless you have matching dies for both sides, you can only strike one side. If you strike one side, then the other, you will destroy your first strike when doing the opposite side.
You also need a considerable amount of force, like small to large sledgehammer level of striking force, and this is difficult if the dies are not lined up and you do not strike them square and even. Typically the dies fit together with some type of "nesting" overlap, or the striking weight is fixed on a set of shafts to keep the force of the strike even and parallel to the die.
Might I suggest etching them instead? It would be more involved, but I had great success with etching steel awhile back with muriatic acid. You can use just about anything as a resist. I used a combo of nail polish and electrical tape. In the case of dozens of coins, I would personally go with a vinyl design cut out on a Cricut or Silhouette for the faces and then maybe a swipe of nail polish around the edges. But if you wanted to sit there and do each one by hand I wouldn't stop you.

The caveat would be that you would need to test if the plating on those will respond well to simple acid etching.
I smashed a couple with a sledge on my RR Rail anvil. Good news, they seem solid, Bad news, I need much flatter surfaces. I think I am going to cut a basic shape into the Sledge and use it to hammer in a simple shape. I will draw the shape and dremmel it.


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That'll be a big chest to fill. Putting a false bottom is the only way to go. I bought a small chest and filled with pre-made replica pirate coins (in metal) And it still took a lot of coins to fill a SMALL chest. I look forward to seeing where this project goes.

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