JUN 03, 2017 09:27 AM PDT

Here's Why Some U.S. Coins Have Ridges on the Side


Some, but not all, U.S. coins have ridges on their side, but have you ever wondered why?

Back in the 1700's, coins were made out of precious metals like gold and silver much more often than they are today. When ridges weren't a part of the coin's build, some people filed down excess metal from the edge of the coin and collected it to sell it for a lump sum profit.

When the government started catching onto this behavior, they not only began changing the metallic composition of our coins to put a stop to this devious behavior, but they also added ridges, which make it far easier to tell whether or not a coin has been tampered with.

In addition to keeping people from filing off excess metal when they're not supposed to, these ridges help prevent coin duplication by making them more difficult to reproduce.

Today, since precious metals are barely used in coins, the ridges can help visually-impaired individuals to more easily distinguish between coins of similar size.

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
OCT 22, 2019
Cardiology
OCT 22, 2019
Avoiding Sugar In Unexpected Places
Most people are under the false impression that what they eat is healthy. There is such a disconnect between the processed, prepackaged foods we eat today ...
OCT 22, 2019
Earth & The Environment
OCT 22, 2019
July 2019 is the Hottest Month on Record
Headlines of record-breaking heat have become more common this summer. Just a few weeks ago, cities throughout Europe suffered through an intense heatwave....
OCT 22, 2019
Space & Astronomy
OCT 22, 2019
When Can We Expect Another Nearby Supernova?
Once most stars reach the end of their life cycle, they’ll explode with a gleaming white-hot intensity, an event that’s often referred to by as...
OCT 22, 2019
Space & Astronomy
OCT 22, 2019
ESA's Upcoming Euclid Space Telescope Could Teach Us About Dark Energy
The European Space Agency is currently developing a new visible to near-infrared space telescope dubbed Euclid, which is expected to tell us more about the...
OCT 22, 2019
Chemistry & Physics
OCT 22, 2019
Artificial "Bug Eyes" Made of Nanoparticles and Liquid Marbles
The term compound eye refers to the unique visual organs that can be found in many insects (hence the nickname "bug eyes"), as well as certain sp...
OCT 22, 2019
Space & Astronomy
OCT 22, 2019
Here's Why NASA Wants to Crash a Spacecraft Into an Asteroid
Yes, you read that right; NASA would like to slam a purposefully built spacecraft into the surface of an asteroid. While this idea might seem like a substa...
Loading Comments...