NGC Launches New Metallurgic Analysis Service

Posted on 5/12/2010

Metallic composition and weight can now be reported on the certification label.

This pattern cent from the Simpson
Collection is struck in billion, an
alloy made predominantly of copper
and precious metal (in this case
silver). click image to enlarge

NGC is introducing a new service line to perform metal composition testing at the submitter’s request. Metallurgic analysis is available for pattern, essai, trial and mint error coins, as well as tokens and medals. The cost of this service is $75 in addition to the NGC grading fee. Coins already certified and encapsulated by NGC can be resubmitted to NGC for metal testing for the flat fee of $75.

NGC performs composite surface scans of coins using X-ray fluorescence. The tests are entirely non-invasive and leave no trace of examination whatsoever. To ensure the most accurate results, coins are examined un-encapsulated. If the analysis indicates that the coin has a non-standard metal composition, the three most abundant non-trace metals present on the coin's surface and the weight of the tested coin will appear on the NGC certification label.

Metallurgic analysis is performed at NGC’s facility by trained technicians. The turnaround time required for this service is approximately three days in addition to the standard turnaround time for the accompanying service request. After certification is completed, tested coins are encapsulated in the Scratch-Resistant EdgeView® holder.

"NGC has used metal composition analysis for authentication purposes routinely, but we always believed that there was also a role for it to play in more precise attribution. Certainly this service will be a boon to collectors of pattern coins," commented Rick Montgomery, NGC President.

This astonishing-quality coin from the
Simpson Collection is identical in
weight and composition to 5-cent
nickels struck in 1867. click image
to enlarge

NGC CEO Steve Eichenbaum added, "This service launch was really predicated on the availability of highly advanced and new technology. At NGC, we take innovation very seriously, and we continue to implement new services whenever we believe that they will meet the needs of collectors and numismatic professionals."

While the next version of the NGC submission form, coming this summer, will include this service option, NGC is accepting coins for metallurgic analysis immediately. To submit coins for this service, prominently write "METAL COMPOSITION TEST" on the submission form, and include the additional $75 per coin service charge in the fee calculation at the bottom of the form. Coins to be tested should be listed on a separate submission form from coins not receiving this service. Multiple submission forms can be shipped back from NGC together at the submitter's request.

Any questions about submission procedures or this new offering can be directed to NGC Customer Service at or by phone toll-free at 1-800-NGC-COIN (642-2646).

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