Numismatics is a term used for the study or collection of currency and this includes paper money, tokens, notes, coins and related objects. However, Numismatists are more commonly referred to as coin collectors. The term has been synonymous with the collecting of coins since then. Any self -respecting numismatist who hopes to broaden his collection and knowledge accurately has to arm himself with a basic yet indispensable set of tools for plying his trade. When talking about coins numismatic value, we are talking about a monetary value above the base metal value of the coin itself. Meaning they are valued for being rare, historic, condition, and being collectible. These coins literally had to go under a microscope! Here are the basic set of tools that you would need as a Numismatist.
Precision Digital weighing scale
As with most people, I imagine a coin collector to be a balding man with a huge lens perched on his head and a light. Apparently one of the easiest ways to eliminate a fake coin is to weigh it. Some experts have become so adept that they can immediately assess the probability of the coin being genuine just by holding it in their hands and testing the heft. Weight is so much harder to knock off.
Precision Digital Caliper
Like the weight, size is also key to identifying a coin. A deal breaker. This tool works by placing the coin inside the jaws of the caliper, then closed carefully until both ends of the “jaws” make contact with both sides of the coin. This handy tool has a digital display readout so you can easily see the results.
A Magnifying Lens
One of the most basic rules, when you are in this business, is to never inspect any coin JUST with the unaided eye. For an “unpowered” lens meaning a lens that is not powered electronically by any means, a 14x power glass lens is the sweet spot. This will reveal most flaws that will make or break the deal in this hobby. Obviously, a lens would allow you to see more because in this business, counterfeits and knockoffs abound. Tampering with a genuine coin is also rampant so a good numismatic collector should always be on his toes.
A coin grading app
Last but not least for the “basic” toolkit. You have to have a coin grading app installed on your mobile device. This is a recent development in the Numismatic field. brought on by high-speed communication and the advent of smartphones. Most of these apps have their own photo databases as a reference for grading a coin and is super useful for a collector.
There is a multitude of tools to add but they are more advanced than what is mentioned above. Those four, however, are those that you can carry with you on your person as a basic set and great for beginners.