Gold: $2049.40  Silver: $23.16  Platinum: $918.60  90% Junk $1 FV: $16.56  Gold/Silver Ratio: 88.49

Junk Silver Coins

90% Silver Coins and other junk silver coin, 40% Kennedy Half Dollars, Canadian 80% junk silver and more

The US Government issued 90% silver, 10% copper for most circulated coins through 1964. To save money, the US Mint was ordered to reduce the content to 40% silver for half dollar coins through 1971, while others were minted in clad alloys.


Learn More About Junk Silver Coins

Up until 1964, all of the dimes, quarters, half-dollar and dollar coins in circulation were minted from an alloy that was 90% silver. During the early 1960s, the use of silver in manufacturing things like photographic film and other consumer goods caused the price of silver to increase. In 1965, the Mint introduced the cupronickel clad coins that were are most familiar with today. Junk silver coins were once used as regular everyday coinage until people began to hoard the 90% silver coins for due to their intrinsic value.

In 1971, the US Mint shifted the half-dollars to the nickel-clad alloy coins that are now so well known, saving the 90% silver for special commemorative coins.

Ever since, 90% junk silver has been a favorite among investors, preppers and collectors. This is still recognized as US coinage, though the intrinsic value is worth far beyond the face value. These naturally fractional denominations range from Morgan Silver Dollars to Washington Quarters to Mercury Dimes. Sometimes referred to as Junk Silver because it has little to no numismatic value and is purchased mainly for the silver content.

There is roughly .715 troy ounces or 22.23 grams of silver per $1 face value when it comes to dimes, quarters and half dollars. Morgan and Peace dollars were minted with .7734 troy ounces, slightly more.

90% Silver Investment

Utilizing 90% silver as a store of wealth is one of the most practical investments anyone can make. It is easy to stack and can be easily stored in paper bank rolls or canvas bags. Junk Silver is an informal term used for any silver coin which has been circulated and has little to no numismatic or collectible value. The intrinsic value of the silver is the major appeal of these coin.

Franklin half-dollar coins were minted from 1948 until 1963. The Franklin half-dollar coin was replaced by the Kennedy half-dollar coin. The Kennedy half-dollar coin was minted in 90% silver only in 1964. From 1965-1969 Kennedy half-dollar coins were minted with 40% silver content.

The Washington silver quarter was introduced in 1932 and were minted with 90% silver until 1964. Since 1965, Washington Quarters have been minted as a copper/nickel alloy, with the exception of silver proof quarters and other special issues.

All Mercury dimes were minted with silver. As did Roosevelt dimes minted before 1965.

For investors looking to add weight to their holdings, mixed junk silver in standard face value denominations can often be the cheapest option.

Making bulk purchases of circulated silver coins is the most effective way to get the lowest premium and pay the cheapest price. Junk silver is widely recognized and very simple to authenticate without any special tools or chemicals. The silver coins have a slightly different appearance than modern clad coins and can usually be identified with visual examination of certain characteristics that help them stand out.

The first and most obvious thing to look for is the date. The minting of silver in everyday coins ended in 1964. Quarters and dimes minted in 1965 and after are modern copper clad coins.

In addition to the date, the reeded edge on Pre-1965 coins is entirely silver. With modern clad coins, the copper core is visible through the coin edge.

Another way to identify junk silver coins is by the sound the coin makes when it's dropped onto a solid surface. Silver is a dense material. The "Ping Test" is easily recognizable for experienced stackers and preppers alike. Apps are also available for mobile phones and devices that can help new investors to help distinguish genuine 90% silver.

Canadian Junk Silver

Collectors and investors often seek out Canadian 80% junk silver as a means of owning physical silver in smaller denominations. These coins can be purchased at a relatively low premium over the current spot price of silver, making them an accessible way to invest in precious metals.

Junk Silver continues to be one of the cheapest and most accessible ways to begin buying and holding silver as a store of value and wealth.

Silver half-dollars, quarters and dimes comprise the majority of junk silver and it is easy to buy from online bullion dealers and marketplaces like eBay.

Additionally, there are a variety of well established "buy/sell" communities and groups on Facebook, Reddit, Instagram and other social media and community forums.

Locally, you can usually find junk silver at pawn shops, We Buy Gold stores, local coin shops and some antique stores.

In some areas of the country it's possible to find easy opportunities to buy, sell and trade using silver gold for both products and services.

Online bullion dealers typically sell junk silver in lots based on the total face value of all denomination.

Each $1 face value of junk silver in any combination dimes, quarters or half-dollars contains roughly .715 troy ounces of pure silver.

Coin Years Minted Silver Content Total Weight Silver Weight
90% Silver Dimes
Roosevelt Dime 1946-1964 .90 2.5 2.25 grams (.072 troy ounces)
Winged Liberty "Mercury Dime" 1916-1945 .90 2.5 2.25 grams (.072 troy ounces)
Liberty Head "Barber Dime" 1892-1916 .90 2.5 2.25 grams (.072 troy ounces)
90% Silver Quarters
Washington Quarter 1932-1964 .90 6.25 5.625 grams (.181 troy ounces)
Standing Liberty Quarter 1916-1930 .90 6.25 5.625 grams (.181 troy ounces)
Liberty Head "Barber Quarter" 1892-1916 .90 6.25 5.625 grams (.181 troy ounces)
90% Silver Half Dollars
Kennedy 1964 .90 12.5 11.25 grams (.362 troy ounces)
Franklin 1948-1963 .90 12.5 11.25 grams (.362 troy ounces)
Walking Liberty 1916-1947 .90 12.5 11.25 grams (.362 troy ounces)
Kennedy 1964-1969 .40 12.5 5 grams (.148 troy ounces)
90% Silver Dollars
Peace Dollar 1921-1935 .90 26.73 24.06 grams (.773 troy ounces)
Morgan Dollar 1878-1921 .90 26.73 24.06 grams (.773 troy ounces)
35% Silver Nickels
Jefferson "War Nickels" 1942-1945 35% 5 grams 1.75 grams (0.0563 troy ounces)

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Where to buy the cheapest Junk Silver Coins

We help find the best prices for the cheapest Junk Silver Coins when you're ready to buy.

FindBullionPrices.com compares precious metals prices from trusted and reputable online bullion dealers to help you find the lowest prices on Junk Silver Coins. The prices on our site are updated hourly and adjusted for silver spot price. This gives you the tools to compare silver prices.