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Hawaiian coins


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Here's some info about the coins:

¼ Dala: Weight: 6 grams, Diameter: 23 cm

½ Dala: Weight: 13 grams, Diameter: 30 cm

Both edges are reeded.


Here are the dimensions and weights as they should be according to Walter Breen's Encyclopedia:

¼ Dala: Weight: 6.25 grams, Diameter: 24.3 mm

½ Dala: Weight: 12.5 grams, Diameter: 30.5 mm


The Krause-Mishler catalog gives 6.22 g for the 1/4 Dala and also 12.5 g for the 1/2 Dala. I suspect that you might just need more accurate scales for this kind of measurement, and that the actual weights are OK. Check the diameter of your 1/4 Dala again ... a difference of 1.3 mm is somewhat suspect.


As to deciding whether a coin is genuine or fake from pictures, it is sometimes possible to spot a fake coin because of variations in detail. But it is not possible to pronounce a coin as genuine just by looking at pictures. I have seen pictures of very clever fakes of the 1 Dala coin on eBay. The pictures were fairly high resolution, so the minor differences in detail were visible on close inspection. However, the pictures you show here are too small and maybe a little out of focus, so I can't really tell.


You might want to go to the Heritage auction site (http://www.ha.com) and look through the archived auctions, comparing your coins with known genuine specimens. They have wonderful images there. Look for any variations in the king's hair and beard. Count the denticles, look for anomalies in the date digits, compare the detail on the reverses.


To me, the quarter Dala looks OK, but possibly cleaned. As to the 1/2 Dala, I will reserve judgment for now. Hard to tell whether the rim dings are bumps or perhaps "bubbles" from casting. I would take a very close look at the shape and position of the letters, too.


Can you provide better pictures?

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Alright, cheers Bobh!

I weighed them again and got 7 vs. 12 grams. can't get any more specific than that on the scale I used, and the result varies by about 1gram.

The half dollar is about 30-30.5cm (I do it by hand so I can't be more exact than that) and the quarter is about 23-23.5, hard to see though due to the light.


I will try to get better pictures tomorrow and post them so you can see better.

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