Instructables
Picture of Make Your Own: Pure Copper Golden Dollar!
It all started as I was just cleaning my golden dollars (from varnish) and the amazing happened. I accidently left on in the vinegar too long! And to my surprise, I started seeing changes in the dollar. I decided to leave it in the vinegar for a few weeks, and the whole manganese gold cover acidic-ally came off, but I couldn't find the cover because it had melted. And to my awareness, I had a copper golden dollar!

All of this instructable is pretty easy, and very cheap!
 
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Step 1: What You Will Need

Picture of What You Will Need
1. Golden dollar
2. Vinegar
3. Paper towels
4. A glass container

Step 2: Put Golden Dollar in Vinegar

Picture of Put Golden Dollar in Vinegar
Exactly that. Fill your glass container with vinegar, and drop in your golden dollar. Leave it for, say, two to three weeks, stirring each day.

Step 3: Take Out and Finish

Picture of Take Out and Finish
Take out your golden dollar when it is not so shiny, and has a 'used' look. You have taken off the shiny manganese cover! You are left with a pure copper golden dollar!
 Where did the gold go?  According to the US Mint, the Sakagawea dollar has a coating of copper-zinc-manganese-nickel.  Vinegar is acetic acid.  It reacts with the metal coating forming a metal acetate (copper acetate, zinc acetate, etc.)  Metal acetates tend to be soluble in water.  When you threw out the vinegar water, the acetates went with it.  

If you stick two wires from a battery (like 9v), the metals should coat out on the wire from the negative pole of the battery.  Also, the metals will come out of the solution as a white, crumbly metal oxide if you make the solution alkaline.  Oven cleaner and ammonia are alkaline.
007dna (author)  cyberpageman5 years ago
 Yeah.....I couldn't find it!

007dna
Oroka5 years ago
Did this process dissolve the lettering? Could you buff the dollar to a shiny finish or is it rough and potted?
007dna (author)  Oroka5 years ago
No, it's still shiny.
Arbitror5 years ago
Why would you want to take the gold off!?
its not gold. It has a goldish look to it but its just a protective coating of maganesse.
007dna (author)  sageserver5 years ago
THANK YOU!! Someone understands!!!
V-Man7375 years ago
This is a numismatist's nightmare!
BTW, where does the gold go? Is there some way we could extract it out of the vinegar solution?
Apparently the "gold" is just a protective coating of maganesse.
007dna (author) 5 years ago
Who knows! I just though it kinda cool.