The Friday Fun Blog: The Making of a Coin Ring

by Mike Unser on December 28, 2007 · 5 comments

I’ve never been a fan of coin jewelry. If I’m going to carry coins around, they’re going to be in my pocket …

In times past, I’ve gone so far as to keep a "lucky" American Silver Eagle handy. It was a phase I went through as a younger collector. I enjoyed pulling the coin out, showing it or simply flipping it around and playing with it. Then there was the "testing aspect" of handling the coin to see how much wear it would undergo over time …

In that sense of my experience, I could understand those who like to wear a coin within a ring, necklace or whatever. But the thought of punching a whole into a coin so it’ll fit through a chain or otherwise purposely damaging a fine coin for jewelry didn’t make much sense to me. I’m not some purist when it comes to common coins. I’ve always been tempted and still have the urge to place a penny on the railroad track and see the results after a train has passed by. Yet, that’s my inner child speaking and the voice hasn’t gone away.

I then came across the below video where a Kennedy half-dollar is converted into a ring. My main viewpoint hasn’t changed after watching the video and I had to cringe somewhat in first seeing a hammer strike the Kennedy. Yet, there’s a certain innovative thinking I respected in coming up with the idea and then actually seeing it through to completion.

I also have to admit there is a small part of me that wouldn’t mind the idea of having a ring that had history, more meaning and was made from something I had once carried around.

After watching the video, what are your thoughts?

Have a safe and enjoyable New Year,


(What is the Friday Fun Blog? It’s where we let loose and write our one and only "blog" for the week.)

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Tom December 31, 2007 at 12:34 pm

I have made more rings from coins than I can count.

If you decide to make one, please do not follow the instructions in this video. It’s good entertainment at best.

Unless you are going to make them to sell at a profit, a spoon is the only tool that should be used to hammer the edges of the coin. You will note that many sites that recommend using a hammer will be followed by instructions on how to sand, polish and buff the ring. This is not necessary if you use a spoon.

·Make a template of your desired ring size. If you’re lucky, you will find a washer or a coin that fits snuggly into a ring that fits you. If not, trace the inside of the ring onto a piece of thick craft paper or the back of a notebook. Cut it out. This will be used so that you know when to stop tapping.

·Drill the hole before you start tapping. The hole should be only big enough for a rattail (round) file. I use a chain saw sharpening file. When you drill the hole first, you will avoid marring the finished surface of the coin. Any whiteness marks from the vice grips will disappear during the tapping process.

·Using a center punch, make a mark in the center of the coin. (Hitting the punch too hard will distort the coin.) This will keep the drill bit from drifting. Drill all the way through the coin. Remove any burs with the file and/or emery cloth.

·Hold the ring in you hand while tapping. Do not place it on a hard surface.

·You will note in the video how the spoon was held to show it doesn’t work. Hold the spoon at the very end of the handle. Strike the edge of the coin with the “sweet spot” of the spoon (the area the spoon rests on when set at the dinner table). I also use this technique to crack ice for drinks. It’s much safer than an ice pick.

·Do not use glancing blows to hit the edge of the coin. Hit it in the center and try to avoid hitting the edge of the coin. You do not want the edges turned down. Every time you strike the coin, rotate it. It is random, so occasionally check for roundness and tap as required to maintain roundness.

·When your template fits snuggly into the coin, stop tapping. Use the file to remove the excess metal, leaving a very little that will be removed with a piece of emery paper wrapped around the file. (Note: Always keep the file and emery paper perpendicular to the inside of the ring.) If the ring is too snug and there is no more metal to remove without removing the lettering. Place the ring on a smooth metal rod and use the same “tap and turn” technique. This will “stretch” the ring.

Making a ring is not a weekend project. It depends on how much free time you have to tap. Take your time and be patient. They are very rewarding when complete.

Just a side note: I had an admin that was getting married. I knew they were not well off and suggested coin rings for each. After I showed them an example, the enthusiastically began making each other’s rings. He made her ring using a coin from his birth year. She made his ring with a coin from her birth year. They proudly showed me the rings when they were complete. You couldn’t tell they didn’t come from store bought rings. The sentimental value could not be bought.

ilikecats June 11, 2008 at 1:34 pm

I found a website that has different type of rings. I bought a few and you dont have to pay the price on the screen, it seems you can make offers. Here is the site

Paul December 18, 2008 at 4:40 pm

I’ve made about thirty rings in the last month using a hammer, anvil, dremel tool, and hobby sandpaper. I’ve made them in the past using a spoon but it really does take a long time. I find that the time spent sanding and polishing is well worth the time saved by using a hammer instead of a spoon. Also, if one of my rings was as warped as that junk he made in the video, i’d throw it away.

Ringsbyruss March 16, 2009 at 9:19 pm

I have made lots of these and started making them as a side job/ hobby.

Yunior Aguirre August 2, 2014 at 2:17 pm

Making coin rings this is very challenging but the process is enjoyable. I sell silver coin rings on Ebay and put pictures on Facebook ( I sell them for less than $30.00.

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