Extruding

Northwest Territorial Mint: The Extruding Process
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From Billet to Sheet

The solid metal forms referred to as "billets" are dislodged from the steel containers and transported to the billet oven (shown at right), where they are reheated for 15 minutes at approximately 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit in preparation for the next step in the process. Using specially designed channel locks to collect the heated billets from the oven, technicians load the billets into a massive machine called an extruder, which operates under extreme pressure to fashion the heated forms into thin strips of soft, annealed metal.

The extruded strips are then sent to the roller, where they are rolled to precise thicknesses.

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Northwest Territorial Mint: Insights & Ideas
Silver Bar
Hot Topic: Extruded Bars

When Pan American Silver wanted a solution for minting 100 Troy Ounce silver bullion bars, Northwest Territorial Mint proposed manufacturing these from extruded silver which is then sand blasted and pressed. The result is a highly acclaimed bar purchased as an investment but prized for its beauty.

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Northwest Territorial Mint: In The News

First Steam-Powered Coin Press

Northwest Territorial Mint: Did You Know?Devised and built in France in 1833, the first steam-powered coin press was operated at the U.S. Mint in Philadelphia on March 22, 1836. It quickly replaced the screw press in striking all copper coins and was gradually used to mint half dollars as well. In his report to President Andrew Jackson the following year, the Mint's Director, Robert Maskell Patterson, wrote: "As [other steam presses] are completed, the coining by human labor could be abandoned, and the work that can be executed. in the Mint will be greatly increased."