Notes: This coin is sometimes called a Silver Penny by those who aren't sure exactly what it is. While these coins may look like silver, the 1943 cent is actually 99% steel with a 1% zinc coating to make it look silverish. In the year 1943 the United States issued the steel penny because the copper was needed for World War II. The steel or silver look is actually the result of the mint using a Zinc coating. The composition of this coin is 99% steel with a thin layer of zinc. See photo above for actual example. The 1943 Steel Wheat Penny is much akin to the 1943 War Nickel in that both coins were issued with alternate metal compositions in order to save metal for the war.
1943 Steel Wheat Cent Errors
Double die strike errors are known to exist in the year 1943 for the steel wheat cent. Look closely at the lettering and or dates to find traces of this error.
Off Center Strike
When the die strikes the planchet off center it creates an off center strike. These can be off anywhere from 5-90% in any direction. Look for a blank crescent shape at the edge of the coin to spot this error. See image above as example.
Struck on Dime Planchet
Silver dime planchets somehow made their way into the hoppers for the 1943 steel pennies and were struck and released to the public by accident.
Example above is a struck through die cap, but in general struck through errors occur when a foreign object makes its way between the die and the planchet and remnants of this object are indented into the coin.
1943 Bronze Wheat Penny
The mother of all coin United States coin errors. The 1943 Bronze / Copper planchet wheat cent is one of the most valuable coin errors ever.
EBradley: Found this coin searching bank rolls. Not sure if coin is double error. Using magnifying glass and bright light but how can I be certain? Approved: 2022-12-09 08:48:03
Admin: Thanks for posting Bradley, I moved this comment to the general 1943 Steel Cent page to help others. When searching for and verifying double die errors look closely at the edge of lettering and or the date. If you can post a photo of the error I might be able to help you a little more. Basically as it states above you will want to look for trace amounts of a prestruck number or words. Here use this example of errors and look at the double die section to get a better look. Approved: 2022-12-09 08:56:05
This section is more for experienced collectors only, and rates refer only to professionally graded and slabbed coins. If you are new to collecting the prices below may not make much sense.
Breakdown of pricing per condition for 1943 Steel Wheat Penny as follows.
- Grade MS61 = $2-$3
- Grade MS62 = $5-$8
- Grade MS63 = $8-$13
- Grade MS64 = $15-$25
- Grade MS65 = $26-$44
- Grade MS66 = $41-$69
- Grade MS67 = $338-$563
- Grade MS68 = $3,000-$5,000
Is the list above a little overwhelming? If so, take 5 minutes to learn all about Coin Grading.
It's also important to note...Prices are subject to the same supply and demand laws as everything else. Coins sold at the same auction house 10x, would fetch drastically different bids each session. To raise your chances of receiving top dollar read How to Get the Most for your Coins.
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How much is a 1943 Steel Wheat Penny worth?
In Average Circulated (AC) condition it's worth around 45 cents, one in certified mint state (MS+) condition could bring as much as $12 at auction. This price does not reference any standard coin grading scale. So when we say Average Circulated, we mean in a similar condition to other coins circulated in 1943, and mint state meaning it is certified MS+ by one of the top coin grading companies. *** [?].
What are your coins really worth?
Use the handy-dandy calculator below to find the real value of any steel wheat penny in your collection.
The most valuable Steel Wheat Penny's. Prices listed are for MS-65 certified. Visit the link to learn more about each coin.
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***Price subject to standard supply and demand laws, dealer premiums, and other market variations. Prices represent past values fetched at online auctions, estate sales, certified coins being sold by dealers, and user submitted values. While we wholeheartedly try to give honest price estimates there are many factors besides appearance, metal content, and rarity that help make up the coins overall value. Call or visit your local coin dealer for more information.
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