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1. How  & where to obtain British India Coins ?

In India, copper and nickel coins are available in large quantities in metal utensil shops. Gold and silver coins can be purchased in jewelry shop. People in need of urgent cash will sell their antique coins to pawn shop owners or local jewelers at gold or silver market price. These shops are great source for coin collector to accumulate large collections at throw away prices. Coins can also be purchased from reputable coins dealers all over the world. Some may even drop by your doorsteps. The best way to meet a large number of coins dealers is to attend various numismatic exhibitions. In recent years one can procure these coins by bidding in auctions like E bay, Spink and son, Oswal antiques & Tody auctions.

2. What to collect in British India Coins ?

For an individual it is very difficult or almost impossible to collect every British India Coin from all three presidencies to 1947 AD. Hence to have a satisfaction of detailed collection in a limited availability of time and money, one can collect coins of anyone presidency, or collect only uniform coinage from 1835 AD to 1858 AD.  Similarly one can pursue to collect all rupee coins including 1862 dot varieties. Other types of collection include collecting gold, silver, and copper coins of a particular monarch from queen Victoria to king George VI.

 

3. To clean or not to clean the coins ?

Usually senior collectors advise not to clean the coins. It is true for ancient or medieval coins as inscriptions may get damaged. But for British India Coins one can clean gold or silver coin with caution. It is my personal opinion that a coin can be gently cleaned using a super soft toothbrush with tap water +/- mild soap solution. We strongly advice not to use harsh chemicals or acid or metal brush to clean these coins as they may cause more harm than good. For amateurs I strongly advice to refrain from cleaning of any sort until an expert opinion is sought. It should be kept in mind that it is my personal opinion based on 40 years of coin collecting & exhibiting experience. 

4. How should you store these coins ? 

Recent technology has brought innovative ways to store coins safely over a prolonged period. The best one in the market is solvent free vinyl folders or you can make your own folders using thin gauge OHP sheets. These folders can be brought in bulk on eBay or from your local coin dealer. It is also available in many hobby stores all over the country.



5. How do I participate in exhibitions or coin fares ?

I strongly feel one should always participate in exhibitions and coin fares as it lets other coin collectors evaluate and critique your collection. In this way you improve your knowledge base and collection. Also you get meet experts in the field who always have valuable input. You can also exhibit in local schools and chapters enhancing the knowledge of school kids and kindling their interest in this hobby. Additionally you get to meet numerous coin dealers at such gatherings.

 

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Dr. B Jinadatha, Email : jinadatha@hotmail.com