Google Answers Logo
View Question
Q: Looking For Uncleaned Roman Coins from European diggers. ( No Answer,   10 Comments )
Subject: Looking For Uncleaned Roman Coins from European diggers.
Category: Miscellaneous
Asked by: mith0-ga
List Price: $10.45
Posted: 14 Oct 2006 22:16 PDT
Expires: 13 Nov 2006 21:16 PST
Question ID: 773570
Im looking to buy in bulk uncleaned roman coins found by diggers in
europe. I want to buy them from the source the diggers themselves not
resellers ie ebay. To answer my questions provide at least 2-3(1 nice
one might work) Places/people who I can purchase bulk 50-1000
uncleaned roman coins.

No ebay references will be accepted. No digging clubs etc.

The more sources the bigger the tip. Also I prefer email/websites as
the form of contact for these people so I dont get a huge phone bill.

Clarification of Question by mith0-ga on 14 Oct 2006 22:17 PDT
Is there a way to make this question Private? I dont want this
information given to others for free :)

Request for Question Clarification by cynthia-ga on 15 Oct 2006 01:07 PDT
No, there is no way to hide information or correspond privately -- all
Answers and Comments posted here are publicly visible, permanently.

Clarification of Question by mith0-ga on 15 Oct 2006 13:43 PDT
Thats fine on the private information part. This question can be public.
There is no answer at this time.

Subject: Re: Looking For Uncleaned Roman Coins from European diggers.
From: myoarin-ga on 15 Oct 2006 02:06 PDT
Furthermore, virtually everywhere in Europe any antique finds are
protected by law, must be turned over to the government (with or
without compensation) or remain the property of the landowner.  It is
most unlikely that Roman coins found could be legally sold, and thus
more unlikely that a Researcher could find information about diggers
having some to sell.  Even if they could, they would be providing
information on an illegal activity, something they are not allowed to
Subject: Re: Looking For Uncleaned Roman Coins from European diggers.
From: mith0-ga on 15 Oct 2006 13:43 PDT
Very untrue. It is not illegal to dig for coins and sell them. It is
illegal to disturb historical dig sites and distroy
national/historical landmarks. There are thousands of coins scattered
all over just grab a metal detector and wala. There are dig clubs who
meet weekly and find a handful of coins each weekend. All this is very
legal. The bronze/copper and even silver coins are not considered
worth a museums time there are literally hundreds of thousands of
these already unearthed.
Subject: Re: Looking For Uncleaned Roman Coins from European diggers.
From: myoarin-ga on 15 Oct 2006 15:42 PDT
Mith0, If you say so.  
I rather believe that the authorities ignore something they can't
control, but maybe that is because I live in Germany, where everything
is controlled  - in theory.  ;-)

But something else occurred to me on rereading the question.  
It seems very unlikely that finders would sell uncleaned coins in bulk.  
How would they price them?  Would they forego the chance that there
was something of individual value among what they had found?
Subject: Re: Looking For Uncleaned Roman Coins from European diggers.
From: mith0-ga on 15 Oct 2006 22:37 PDT
Thats half the value of supposed unsearched dusty covered in crude
coins and the reason they can sell for a good amount because you dont
know whats underneath. But gold and silver are easy to filter out so
its just the bronzes/coppers that are resold in this fashion. Cleaning
the ancient coins is an very indepth process and it isnt cost
effective you clean the coin and 90% of the time get something worth
less then the uncleaned coin itself.

Many of the poorer countries have people who metal detect for
artifacts and coins as a job and sell them in bulk. You can buy bulk
bags of a 1000 uncleaned roman coins on ebay. But these have been
filtered over so many times. Ie digger to middle man to another middle
man to another etc till ebayer he goes through em etc. By the time the
person on ebay gets them you get the bottom of the barrel. I really
dont care about rarity as I dont plan on reselling these I want coins
that clean up nice.

What I want out of this answer is to cut out as many of those middle
men as I can. I want to find someone who does this for a
living/suplimental income and purchase straight from them. I know they
are out there but are buried in the depth of the world wide web(of

: P
Subject: Re: Looking For Uncleaned Roman Coins from European diggers.
From: frde-ga on 16 Oct 2006 04:49 PDT

If they are uncleaned then how can one be sure that they are Roman ?

Also, people with metal detectors tend to be pretty interested in their finds.

There are bound to be magazines about metal detectors, also about
'finds', I think I would look for those.

My guess is that you have found a way of cleaning copper based coins
that is a lot less destructive than traditional methods. I would go
for prolonged immersion in pressurized water followed by a dip in
liquid nitrogen.
Subject: Re: Looking For Uncleaned Roman Coins from European diggers.
From: mith0-ga on 16 Oct 2006 21:06 PDT
To date the most effective cleaning process is long term soak in
mineral oil(months to years) then using ultrasound to break up the
remaining dirt.

You can tell they are roman from the size of the coin mainly. Roman
coins were made in the same sizes for all the years of the empire.
Besides that you can normally see one or two details poking out of an
uncleaned coin that give a hint to its origin.

Yes many people who find coins via metal detecting are interested in
them. Others are interested in money. About 10-20,000 roman coins swap
hands each week on ebay.

There are diggers out there who use it as a second job/primary and
want to sell to the same someone all the time so they dont have to
deal with finding someone to sell them to over and over. Thats what I
want to find.. or at least get past as many middle men as I can.
Subject: Re: Looking For Uncleaned Roman Coins from European diggers.
From: frde-ga on 17 Oct 2006 01:15 PDT
Interesting method of cleaning.

When I meant that the diggers are interested in what they have found,
I really meant that my guess is that they would prefer to see the
coin, or most of it before they part with it.

I would look out specialist magazines and insert a small ad
- check out a large W H Smith
- also have a look in Exchange and Mart

I'm assuming that you are in the UK from your writing style and the
fact that there are not many Roman coins found in the USA or

I've found a number of forums and NGs with the following Google Search
  roman coins forum metal detector
Subject: Re: Looking For Uncleaned Roman Coins from European diggers.
From: mith0-ga on 17 Oct 2006 23:46 PDT
When I mentioned that the coin is worth less then the uncleaned coin
90% of the time I meant that 50% of the coins dont clean up worth a
poo.. 20% have some detail 20% have enough detail to identify the coin
1-10% are consider coins in some fine, very fine, or extra fine

Take into account that many folks take a hobby of cleaning uncleaned
coins and that amount of these coins is rapidly deminishing since the
invention of metal detector technology the uncleaned coins are often
worth more then the same coins cleaned. In the 1980's (first cheap
metal detectors) 10's of thousands of coins were found in a short time
and supply killed demand. Coins sold for 10 for $1 or less for the
large quarter or bigger size. Now people pay .50-1.00 U.S dollar per
coin smaller then a dime sometimes half the size of a dime. I came
late into the field and Im paying for it(literally my poor wallet!!)

In reference to your point about posting in coin collecting magazines
I dont want to contact those sorts of people. The kinds of people who
buy coin collecting magazines want to collect coins not sell them(at
least not for a crazy profit) : )

Since no researcher seems to have the stomach to step up to the plate
of my question then at least people searching can gain information on
the large amount of comments.
Subject: Re: Looking For Uncleaned Roman Coins from European diggers.
From: frde-ga on 18 Oct 2006 01:53 PDT
Interesting stuff

I did not mean coin collecting magazines
- I meant magazines about metal detectors and metal detecting

My understanding (from a friend and checking the net) is that people
are quite fanatical about their machines.

Actually the guy I knew used to hunt for old sixpences, clean them up
and put them on a chain - then sell them by mail order through
Exchange & Mart
- he did rather nicely out of it 
- it was a long time ago, he was an enterprizing kid

What you need is a way of getting at the real 'diggers' - ideally
those that are going for gold, and get copper as a by product.

I've a feeling that one needs to 'profile' the people who do that - my
guess is that the real diggers go to a first level dealer who they
know, like and trust ( I think I know of one in my area, a 70+ guy, ex
military, who gets around on a bicycle ).

I reckon that if you can find a person who is an avid digger, they
will put you onto their local contact. I've a hunch that the local
contact will buy anything, even if they don't want it, in order to
encourage the diggers.
Subject: Re: Looking For Uncleaned Roman Coins from European diggers.
From: aota-ga on 24 Oct 2006 12:30 PDT
Everyone into unclean roman coins would LOVE to find a source.
The odds of anyone answering your question here are a million to one.
If you want to find a source you?d almost certainly have to go to
Europe and find one your self.
Have any friends who live in Germany, the UK, or somewhere around the
Mediterranean? Someone who has their own property that can medal
detect there. (they?d have to have the rights to detect where ever
they do)
?If? and that?s a huge if, you did know someone there, you?d both
would have to be sure it was not illegal to export these coins. It is
illegal in many countries. Italy being one?.then across the
Mediterranean in Croatia it is illegal there as well?though there are
many, many medal detecting fanatics that are there. Only chance of
getting them out of the country is by going accross the boarder and
mailing them from there. This is risky biz for them and you?d be hard
pressed to find someone to do it for you.

Important Disclaimer: Answers and comments provided on Google Answers are general information, and are not intended to substitute for informed professional medical, psychiatric, psychological, tax, legal, investment, accounting, or other professional advice. Google does not endorse, and expressly disclaims liability for any product, manufacturer, distributor, service or service provider mentioned or any opinion expressed in answers or comments. Please read carefully the Google Answers Terms of Service.

If you feel that you have found inappropriate content, please let us know by emailing us at with the question ID listed above. Thank you.
Search Google Answers for
Google Answers  

Google Home - Answers FAQ - Terms of Service - Privacy Policy