We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.
Materials

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

What is a Planchet?

Mary McMahon
By
Updated: May 17, 2024

A planchet is a disc of metal which has been prepared for stamping as a coin, but not yet stamped. Planchets are sometimes called “blank coins.” These little metal discs are produced in vast numbers either in mints or facilities which mints contract with to make blanks. Occasionally, an error happens during coin production and a blank planchet is mistakenly put into circulation; such blanks can be valuable, depending on the coin involved.

The terminology which surrounds planchets is a bit murky. Officially, a flat metal disc which has been machined is considered a blank. When the blank has been stamped to create a raised edge, it becomes a planchet, prepared for stamping with the imprint of a coin. Once stamped with the coin die, the disc becomes a coin. A blank or faint planchet is a planchet which was not struck by the die or was struck by a misregistered die which left only a faint impression.

When discussing ancient coins, the term “flan” is used to describe a blank. However, in practice, the term “planchet” is often used whether one is talking about a true planchet, a blank, or a flan, which can sometimes be a bit confusing. Flans were made by casting, rather than machining, and tend to have more irregularities as a result.

Planchets are made by rolling out a sheet of metal to a uniform thickness and stamping it with a cutting die which punches out a number of discs. The discs at this point have somewhat rough edges and usually have a cloudy color, as well. When the blank is stamped to turn it into a planchet, the creation of a raised rim also smooths the edges. The blank planchets are then fed into a die press which stamps the blanks with the impression of the coin and adds the distinctive reeded edges found on many coins.

Mints usually try to keep errors out of circulation, but they are occasionally released, and they may become hot objects for collectors. A planchet is visually interesting, but can be hard to verify, which is one reason why planchets are usually not very valuable. One could potentially counterfeit a coin blank with the right equipment. It is important to note that since most mints add reeded edges at the time that coins are struck in the die, it is not possible for the surface of a planchet to be blank and the edges to be reeded. This can only happen as a result of abnormal wear or deliberate manipulation of the coin.

About Mechanics is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a About Mechanics researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments
Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

Learn more
Share
About Mechanics, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

About Mechanics, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.