Challenge coins are an important piece of military history, and if you’ve been collecting these for a while chances are challenge coins are important to you, too. As your collection grows, you may be wondering how to best organize, care for, and display your trophies. Here are 5 tips for maintaining your challenge coin collection:
1. Purchase the proper display materials
It can be tempting to go the do-it-yourself route, but by making a small investment in the best materials to preserve your collection, you’ll ensure your challenge coins are protected for years to come. Display cases, shadow boxes and stands are a few of the most popular options for challenge coin storage and showpieces.
2. Learn proper care for each coin
Certain cleaning materials can be damaging to your challenge coins. Be sure to consult with an expert on what the best method is cleaning and preserving your coins.
3. Keep a written inventory
This log can be in a physical notebook or a digital file. Keeping a record of which challenge coins are in your possession is important for a few reasons. First, as your collection grows, it may be difficult to track down which challenge coins you have. Another reason is for insurance purposes. If you have valuable challenge coins, you should include this on your home owner’s or renter’s insurance policy, to protect you from loss, theft, fire or natural disaster. And if your collection is particularly large or otherwise interesting, you may find yourself loaning out certain pieces for display at museums or shows. Your inventory log will help you keep track of where each on of your challenge coins is at any given time.
4. Have your challenge coins professionally detailed
While you may be very protective over your collection, and rightfully so, you may consider having a professional clean or restore your challenge coins. In some cases, this may increase the value of your challenge coins, and it will improve the look of your coins during display.
5. Get your challenge coins appraised
In addition to having an inventory of your challenge coins, many insurance companies will require an official appraisal value of your items. There are many reputable places that can evaluate your challenge coins and provide you with an official appraisal based on condition, rarity and other factors. Plus, many appraisers can provide you with additional historical information about your challenge coins.
If you take good care of your challenge coins, you may be one of the lucky few who gets to open your own museum. You’re one of the privileged few who gets to own a piece of world history. Enjoy the journey.