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Polished Dies

Polished Dies.  Striking dies which have worn and been reworked or refurbished to lengthen their life by polishing. Dies can sometimes be refurbished once they have clashed or developed minor diebreaks. However, polishing the die sometimes obliterates detail, thus any pieces struck from such a polished die bear evidence of missing detail or indistinct lettering, figures or relief. The polishing is sometimes done while the dies are still locked in a press, as with long-handled lapping stick (hand lapper); or by grinding wheels at a workbench after the dies have been removed from the press. See also proof-like 2.

excerpted with permission from

An Encyclopedia of Coin and Medal Technology

For Artists, Makers, Collectors and Curators


Roger W. Burdette, Editor

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