[Ansteorra] coinage

Synrik synrik at earthlink.net
Tue Nov 16 14:38:11 PST 2004

A little history . . . . . . . .

For a couple of hundred years (or more) coins were cast by pouring the hot metal
onto heated plates with an embossed design on it (single sided).  Then they
found that if you pressed another plate to the top side of the cooling metal,
that you could have two different designs on the coin.  But over all, the
resolution was low, the designs had to be very simple and there was a bit of
variation between coins.  It was fast but dirty.

Then there was an experimentation for a very short time with using two-part clay
molds.  Better resolution and more detailed artistry, but it was slow and molds
break easily.  This method was cleaner but slow.

Then  with the advent of hardened bronze and steal/iron, they found (late roman)
that they could make a very good impression by pressing a disk shaped piece of
metal between two carved plates under a massive amount of pressure.  This
produced good quality quickly, using relatively few mold plates.  And though the
process has changed a little bit from sledge hammers to 56 ton presses, the
process hasn't changed a whole lot from then to now.

As for the SCA . . .. . . .

There are people in the Known World that have done this and have gotten rather
good at it.  But in Ansteorra we've seen many cast coins/pendants (I've made
thousands), but not a really good pressed coin (sorry Dan), though there make be
some out there that I have yet to see.  Several attempts have been made to do
this, but it is a matter of being able to melt steel and cast it, making a good
40 ton press, hammer press or DiVici press, and then all the other stuff that
goes with it . . . . . . . Not cheap. . . . . . . . Not that it isn't on my list
of things to do either.

As for using it as money . . . . . . . I can see it running into such a pain the
the neck as to not even be reasonable.  In fact I thought there was a problem
sent to the BOD concerning that very issue not to long ago.

Hope this helps.
---------------- Gustave alf Blitzgarten, Jeweler in Elfsea

Jay Yeates wrote:

> previous item brings up something i've been wondering about for a while ....
> any practicing "coiners" in the region ????
> 'wolf
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