Where are Custom Challenge Coins made? Nowadays, most of the Challenge Coins produced and sold worldwide are made overseas, such as in China, but many challenge coins are still manufactured in the USA by American craftsmen.
Coin Minting History in the USA
According to Britannica, the first state mint was presumably established by an Anatolian people, the Lydians, in the 7th century BC. The Greeks of the Aegean Islands soon followed their example, and the art spread into Italy and other Mediterranean countries, as well as to Persia and India. The Romans, who probably began coining in the 4th century BC, laid the foundations of modern minting.
Coining originated independently in China in the 7th century BC and spread into Japan and Korea. In medieval Europe, mints proliferated as commerce revived, and every feudal authority—kings, counts, bishops, and free cities—exercised the mint privilege; there were more than 50 mints in 13th-century France alone. The result was a wide variation in coinage that often handicapped commerce. In the 16th century, mints were set up by the Spaniards in South America and Mexico to coin the gold and silver mined there.
There have been eight coinage mints in operation at various times in the United States. Of these, only four were active in the late 20th century. The mint in Philadelphia, Pa., was founded in 1792 and still produces most of the coins used in daily circulation in the United States. The mint in Denver, Colo., founded in 1906, also produces general coinage. The mint in San Francisco, Calif., founded in 1854, discontinued making general coinage in 1955; but it was re-established in 1965 to make proof sets of coins for collectors. The mint at West Point, N.Y., is now used primarily for gold minting. These mints are under the direction of the U.S. Mint, a branch of the Department of the Treasury.
Traced back to the 1800s, there are many private coin-minting workshops and facilities established throughout the United States to produce personalized & custom coins. Many of them are still operating, while there are also new factories built over the years.
How is a Custom Challenge Coin made?
The big steps in the coin manufacturing process are:
- Creating a Custom Coin Mold
- Die (Coin Mold) Striking
- Cutting the Edge and Deburring the Coins
- Custom Metal Plating and Color Filling
- Laser Engraving and Quality Control
How are USA-made Challenge Coins different from Overseas-made ones?
In quality, challenge coins made in the USA and overseas don’t have much difference. It just comes down to the requirements, specifications, and budget of the customer. Typically, USA-made challenge coins take longer to produce and are more expensive than regular overseas coins because they are considered deluxe crafts and manufactured by a few American union laborers at some boutique metal fabricating establishments.
So, USA-made challenge coins may cost more than the regular ones, but you will be paying for the skill and expertise of the select few American artists and craftsmen who have spent thousands of hours honing their skills in the custom coin-making industry.
American-made coins may have different customization options than regular overseas ones and are subject to change based on the material and workshop availability. For example, US coin factories may not have a specific translucent finish or color. Still, they could craft coins from precious materials such as gold, silver, or even platinum, rather than just ordinary brass-plated metal.
Where are USA-made Challenge Coins manufactured?
Many US-based Custom & Challenge Coins mint facilities throughout the country can be found over the internet, with experiences ranging from years to decades. You can find them online since most of them have e-stores or also have collaborated with some custom coin online shops and producers. They usually have their address shown on their shops or websites if you would like to order your custom coin in person and check out the facility yourself.