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What metals are used in US coins?

Sure you understand metals when it comes to jewelry and custom design…but what about the metals residing in your change purse? [Crickets chirping.]

Don’t worry! We’re ready to help.

So what is a quarter made of? What about the quaint dime? The humble penny? Do they still make copper pennies? Did they ever make copper pennies?

According to AZO Materials:

Coins available from the United States mint are made from a variety of metals. Exotic metals such as silver and gold were used by the United States mint for making coins.

However, due to the increasing price of these metals, they are only used now for making bullion coins or collectors’ coins. Other metals such as copper, nickel and zinc are used to make ordinary coins. Initially, pennies were made from copper.

Coins that have a silver color should not be mistaken for silver. These silver-colored coins are the quarter, nickel and dime coins, made using copper-nickel combination. In the past, only the faces of the coins were plated, which caused the coins to rust.