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Casting with Quarters


Hello everyone,

In an attempt to get a little differant look, a friend has
tried casting with quarters insted of sterling silver. You
know the sandwitch quarters. Problem: The castings have come
out of the investment with a dark finish. The finish is
difficult to remove, like fire scale. We are vacume casting.
Why aren’t the castings clean like with sterling?

I am sure the problem has something to do with the high copper
content or possibly other metals alloyed into the quarters.

Does anyone have any suggestions.



The quarters are not silver, non what so ever. They are
stainless and copper.

John Dach

John Dach and Cynthia Thomas-Dach
MidLife Crisis Enterprises


Hi John… i would not recommend casting with quarters…I
don’t think they were "designed for the Process"you could
vibratory them for a while… that might help clean them up. I
don’t know what alloys are involved and thereby cannot really
offer any advice other than “don’t use them” white bronze from
Oster metals in Providence RI might be a better alternative if
you want something white .

Daniel Grandi


The quarters are not silver, non what so ever. They are
stainless and copper.

  John, I did a little numismatic research on the net and
  came up with the following info from the coinworld online

  Up to 1964, U.S. quarters were 90% silver, 10% copper. 
  From 1965 to the present, except for the 1976 bicentennial
  commemerative coins, the quarter is a laminate with the
  core layer being pure copper, and the outside layer being
  75% copper and 25% nickel.    For '76, the proof sets and
  uncirculated sets sold for collectors had outer layers of
  80% silver and 20% copper, and a center core of 21.5%
  silver and 78.5% copper.   This source, unfortunatly,
  doesn't say what the relative thicknesses of the core and
  outer layers is, so we still don't know the alloy of a
  melted down quarter.  But it's probably fair to say it's
  mostly copper, with a bit of nickel... 

None had any stainless steel.

Hope this helps.

Peter Rowe