Once a coin is identified, I don’t want to have to do it again. It is time to put it into a system where it can be identified again.
I don’t even know how others store and catalog their coins, simply because I needed a system which works well for me and is easy to use.
When I want to find a coin, I don’t want to spend the time browsing pages and excel sheets. I want to know immediately where to find it. So, here is what it looks like.
Coins are stored in folders. All of the pages have 20 pockets, each 2×2. I use 2×2 flips to put the coins into, then I place the flip into the pocket.
I store the coins by country, each page has coins from one country only. Ok, it is not entirely accurate, but more about this later. For example, old German states are stored together with Germany.
The layout of a page is five rows and five columns.
Each page has a Braille label that I can read, which contains the abbreviation of the country, and the page number if I have more than 20 coins from one country.
Countries are stored in alphabetical order.
I have an Excel catalog on the computer which lists each coin. Each coin has a location, which consists of three numbers.
The first number is the page number of the particular country where it is stored. The second number is the row number, and the third number is the column number.
For faster identification, the folders are numbered, too.
Then I have a Braille list which I keep by the collection. It lists all the countries with their abbreviations, and the folder number where I can find the country.
It is a bit complex, but now comes the fun part. I can find any coin in about a half minute.
Let’s say I’m looking for a UK 1 Pound.
I go to the Excel sheet, which is by default sorted by country. I quickly apply a secondary filter and sort coins by value. I find “Great Britain” and scroll to the value I want, in this case it will be among the very first ones. Once I find 1 Pound, I check the record for location. Let’s say the location is: 2, 4, 1.
I check my Braille list for Great Britain and read the folder number. Now I exactly know which folder it is, I just flip through the folder, and since the countries are in alphabetical order and a folder doesn’t contain more than 20 pages, it is quick to find it.
I find UK2, because it is on the second page. I slide my hand down to the fourth row on the first column. Here we go, I found it. In reality it is a very fast process.
I have to stress the fact again that good record keeping is crucial. A coin never goes into the books before I have accurate notes on what it is and where I can find it.