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Congrats on your decision to buy custom challenge coins. Since you’ve made your decision the next logical question is, what kind of challenge coins are you wanting to make? Are you simply looking to increase your private collection or are you wanting to explore another revenue stream by selling challenge coins or are you looking for a unique way to share your passion or cause?

If you are intending to purchase previously made challenge coins then you should probably consider adding more exact terms to your search query or perhaps consider a different search engine.

For the purpose of this post we will assume that you want to create your own custom challenge coins. There are many features available for those wanting to create custom coins but to simplify things what we’re going to focus on is coin type, size, quantity, plating choice, paint color or no paint color. All desired features should be disclosed to insure you're getting an accurate price estimate.

Let's start by discussing something important. I think most people look at a coin and think oh that’s cool. It’s a custom challenge coin with your personalization, that’s cool! However not all custom challenge coins are the same and this detail may be overlooked by someone who has never made their own custom challenge coins.

Coin type in my experienced opinion defines the process used to create your coin, this process determines base material. In an attempt to be completely transparent, there are two manufacturing processes used in coin making. Those processes are die struck and die-cast.

There are a few standard base materials to select from such as zinc alloy, pewter, iron, brass and copper. However not every base material can be used with both manufacturing processes.

Brass, iron and copper are strictly reserved for die struck custom challenge coins but zinc alloy and pewter are die cast only base materials. Depending on the shape of your coin you may not be given the choice of which process to use.

A good example of this are custom challenge coins with holes or cut outs in them. These coins are typically created as die-cast medallions so the cut-outs are built into the coin mold. This saves time in the manufacturing process and avoids the time and expense of excessive labor that is involved when the cut outs are done manually.

This information is noteworthy when comparing costs. Your manufacturer of choice may purposefully charge you for cut outs that they themselves are not having to pay for. While you may not be able to visually see a difference when comparing these 2 specific coin variations you will feel a difference.

So if making a substantial feeling coin is your intent then you need to select die struck copper or brass.

Custom challenge coin measurements vary from one and one half inches to as large as five inches. Price plays an important role here for most individuals. I would recommend fitting your coin size to your design instead of trying to fit my design onto a smaller sized coin.

My reasoning here is simple, coin proportion is important because it relates to important detail, or to put it another way how small or large the individual artwork pieces that comprise your overall coin design can be.

This can sometimes be an issue for some individuals because they get used to the idea of looking at their design at a large scale and then seem shocked when they receive a coin that's reduced significantly in dimension.

Pro tip here, you should always examine your coin design at exact proportion so you are certain of what you’re getting.

The final issue I will discuss here has the ability to make or break your finished product and that is metal finish selection. More often than not folks choose a plating option that is contrasting to their design concept instead of choosing one that adds to or goes perfectly with their design.

If you asked me what the most vital choice about a coin design is, I would say plating.

If you made it this far you deserve a hearty thank you. You're now more capable to make an intelligent buying decision when it comes to custom challenge coins.



Last modified: October 4, 2018

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