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Firefighter Challenge Coins Honor Hometown Heroes

April 29th, 2011

If you know a firefighter, chances are they’re a hometown hero.  In small and significant ways, the men and women that make up your local fire department demonstrate their strength, desire to succeed, and commitment to serving others in their communities.

Challenge Coins Are Versatile Through and Through

Paying tribute to these exemplary human beings just seems natural.  That’s why it shouldn’t come as a surprise that custom challenge coins, which are rich in symbolic nature, are handed out frequently to firefighters.  Tokens of appreciation like these help boost morale, commend years of service, and honor those that lost their lives while serving the community.

Challenge Coins Are Honorable

Because they are similar in weight and appearance to a medal, they are highly regarded by the men and women that receive them.  In fact, you could say that they are one of the most honorable awards a firefighter can receive.  When presented to the individual in a velvet box or acrylic capsule, these items take on a whole new meaning.  It isn’t unusual to see incredible firefighters nationwide carrying and displaying their own custom challenge coins.

Features of Firefighter Challenge Coins

There are a number of ways that a fire department can customize their challenge coins.  Here are just a few to think about:

  • Size – Sometimes a design calls for a large coin. Over sized challenge coins are very noticeable because they are bold and different.
  • Shape – A cut out challenge coin gives designs depth and dimension.  This is yet one more feature that makes your product even more attractive.
  • Colors – A myriad of colors can accentuate certain areas of your coin which helps brings your designs to life.
  • Style – There are several different styles of challenge coins to choose from including offset printed, silkscreened, and dual plated.
  • Single or Double Sided – Your challenge coin can feature images and text on one or both sides.
    Custom Edges – Some edge options include Flat, Rope, Spur, Oblique, Flat Weave/Bevel, and Cross Cut.
  • Glow-in-the-Dark Enamel – A truly unique way to set your challenge coins apart, glow-in-the dark enamel makes a great first impression.
  • Sequential Numbering – Limited edition coins are highly collectible.  If you are only creating a limited number of these items, sequential numbering is for you.

They can also choose what images and text to feature on their coins.  This helps make an outstanding design that every firefighter can appreciate.

To learn more about how you can create custom challenge coins for everyone in your fire department, visit, email or call 1-800-953-3607 toll-free.

Attractive Presentation Options For Your Custom Challenge Coins

April 28th, 2011

It’s not enough to create attractive custom challenge coins if you don’t have an equally appealing way to display them.  That is why we offer a variety of presentation options to all of our customers because we know how important it is to show off the coins that they have collected throughout the years.

In addition to providing free PVC envelopes with every order, we also offer the following options:

Plastic Coin Capsules ($0.60 per capsule) – The fit-to-shape design of this vessel makes it easy to transport your challenge coins from one to location to the next with ease.  It also helps protect them from dust and dirt.

Velvet Bags ($0.60 per bag) – Soft and classic, velvet bags enhance the appearance of challenge coins handed out at awards ceremonies and banquets.  Because they are lightweight and compact, they are easy to store and pull out at any given time.

Acrylic Coin Cases ($1.00 per case) – Hinged lidded cases add another level of security for your treasured keepsakes.  Their compact design makes it easy for you to display several of them in even the tightest of spaces.

Velvet Coin Boxes ($4.00 per box) – Great for presentation ceremonies, velvet coins boxes are often used by the military because of their distinguished, regal appearance.

Plastic Stands ($0.25 per stand) – This affordable presentation option allows you to keep your challenge coins upright and in plain view.

If you are looking for additional ways to impress the people that you give challenge coins to, you might want to look into the different presentation options that we have listed here.  At awards ceremonies and banquets, you can change the atmosphere in an instant by simply putting your custom coins in a velvet box or acrylic case.

Visit to see photos of the different presentation options that we have for you to choose from.  You can also email or call 1-800-953-3607.

Creative Ways to Use Custom Holiday Challenge Coins to Add Fun and Games to Your Next Seasonal Event

April 27th, 2011

Using custom challenge coins for special events and celebrations has become a common practice among many. Some of the reasons for their increased demand are flexibility of design, small size and affordability.  With the past weekend marking yet another Easter holiday, we had the chance to see and learn about some of the many different ways in which individuals and organizations use their customized coins to add creativity, fun and excitement to their annual holiday activities.

Making Coins a Part of Your Egg-stravaganza

Easter is one of the most popular, vibrant and fun filled holidays of the year.  A traditional activity is the Easter egg hunt.  Children, and many adults, look forward seeking out the collecting colorfully and brightly decorated eggs concealed about the event area.  More and more often, rather than using real hard boiled eggs, hinged plastic eggs are being used. These eggs are usually shaped and sized the same as real eggs and open to fit candy or other offerings.  Challenge coins work great inside the toy eggs as well.  A 1.5 inch custom event coin will easily fit inside of the egg adding an element of surprise and anticipation.  The sound of the mysterious object combined with the weight of the coin is sure to get Easter egg hunters even more excited about their findings.

How Many Christmas Coins Can You Find?

Organizers and Emcees of formal Christmas parties and galas can hide their yuletide challenge coins in random or unexpected places throughout the event area and challenge guests to find as many as they can. The winner receives a cash prize equivalent to the number of Christmas coins collected. Their search can span over the duration of the event, giving attendees time to mingle, dine, dance and not take away from the gala’s festivities. Additionally, each player can be permitted to keep one coin as souvenir from the event.

It’s a Toss Up For Collectible Coins

Annual events, like a New Year’s celebrations mark the beginning of a new phase of life for many individuals and groups.  Creating a few collectible challenge coins, with a unique design that includes the New Year and a sequence number will be the all the craze at the party. However, this collectible coin should not simply be given away. Party guests that want this coin will have to work for it by engaging in a classic game of ring toss to win this collectible coin.  All other guests and non-victorious players can be given a keepsake coin designed similar to the collectible just without a sequence number.  Everyone will go home and start the New Year off happy.

There a many more ways, aside from the ones we listed here, in which challenge coins can be used at events and gatherings.  All you need is to use your imagination and have the perfect challenge coin design.  Visit our Create-a-Coin page to get started,

If you have any questions or would like to place an order, feel free to contact Signature Coins at or by calling 1-800-953-3607.

Knowing What to Put On Your Double Sided Challenge Coins

April 26th, 2011

Challenge coins are extremely versatile.  From their humble beginnings in World War I, they have come a long way in terms of quality and design.  In fact, custom challenge coins are so highly regarded that groups aside from the military opt to use them to award, educate, and promote.

With that being said, it is very important to know what types of items can be included in your custom design.  Opting to create double sided challenge coins gives you ample space to incorporate all of the important details you want included in your artwork.

Selecting the Size, Shape, and Style of Your Custom Coins

For example, in addition to being able to choose the size, shape, and style of your challenge coins, did you know that you can also select what type of artwork that is included on them? This can be as simple or elaborate as you would like.

You Don’t Have to Be an Artist

In fact, you don’t have to be a talented artist to create a design that commands attention.  Simply submit your ideas to us and our team of designers will do the work for you.  This allows you to have the challenge coin that meets your needs versus the one that will “just do for now”.

Decorative Edges and Sequential Numbering

You can also choose a decorative edge or sequential numbering as two more ways to set your challenge coins apart from others.  Details like these add to the attractiveness of your product’s design and make interesting conversation pieces.  Who doesn’t like a coin that is rich in detail as well as meaning?

3D Molds and Glow-in-the-Dark Enamel

A 3D mold is another way to make your images appear more realistic.  If you have a photograph with fine detail, you can capture every line with precision.  Photographs of people and wildlife are ideal for challenge coins.  That’s because they make great focal points.

Glow-in-the-Dark enamel is also very eye-catching.  Even with the lights off, challenge coins steal the show.  If you want your designs to be bold and noticeable, you should consider adding a feature that makes your coins pop.

To learn more about challenge coin design, visit  You can also email or call 1-800-953-3607 toll-free.

Using Custom Challenge Coins to Celebrate Martial Arts Achievements

April 25th, 2011

The popularity of martial arts fighting, especially mixed martial arts, has grown drastically all over the world. People of all ages have taken an interest in learning the not only the moves but also the principles and the many mental and physical health benefits of regular training. Martial arts offers its students an added bonus of the major boost in confidence and overall satisfaction that comes with advancing through their respective programs.

Many martial arts forms, like jujitsu, recognize apt students using a color system. Successful trainees are given special color coded belts once they have proven their development of key abilities and principle centered behavior. The belts act as an announcement of the students’ success and means of awarding their achievement. Using customized challenge coins in conjugation with traditional recognition methods is another great way to motivate students to stay on the track.

The Real Reward is in the Training

Recently, we were contacted by a customer who manages Kurisho-Do, a martial arts dojo. He requested a customized award coin to recognize students who have been inducted to the academy’s hall of fame. The challenge coin design, includes many eye catching and awe inspiring elements that both senseis and students will be happy to hand out as well as show off.

The recognition challenge coin, was fashioned in a traditional round shape and includes the dojo’s official logo and related Chinese character text on one side. The opposite side was proudly and artistically used to announce the success and entitlements of the award coin’s owner.

Understanding Key Design Elements

When creating your award challenge coin design, arriving at the perfect one is the ultimate goal. The image of the Kuroshi –Do challenge coin shown here, is what we call a digital proof. As you can see it displays an assortment information about the coin’s design in addition to the front and back images of the actual challenge coin.

Our digital proofing system is immeasurably valuable tool that Signature Coins award coin customers and recipients greatly appreciate. From a challenge coin manufacturing stand point, it allows us share our vision of the personalized coin with the customer and provides a clear starting point. For customers, it makes it easy to incorporate their ideas and oversee the development of a unique and valued item that they will be 100% satisfied with which is rewarding in and of itself.

If you are a teacher of any kind, the next time your students reach a milestone and are due advance and be recognized, you should consider the versatility and unlimited design potential of custom award challenge coins.

Custom challenge coins are easy to design and can be coordinated to complement an existing award program, like the one used in martial arts study. They are also affordable and simply a creative and fun idea.

Call Signature Coins at 1-800-953-3607 to start the custom challenge coin order for your next Hall of Fame or recognition ceremony. Our talented graphic artists are available now and look forward to creating a design your students are sure to love. Submit your ideas to them by emailing

Creating Customized Cause Related Challenge Coins to Raise Money For Non-Profit Events

April 21st, 2011

Many companies organize teams or groups to participate in non-profit cause related events like the March Of Dimes and the Alzheimer’s Memory Walk. Items like customized tee shirts, hats and mugs as well as a free lunch or VIP admission into special thank you galas are just a few ways in which participants are rewarded for their efforts.

Inspiring and Thanking Your Team’s Sponsors

Our question is, what about the sponsors who donate money, to research, development and treatment, on behalf of the event’s runners, bikers or walkers? For anyone and everyone who pledges their time a non-profit event to raise money, we suggest creating custom cause challenge coins.

If your company has a team or group that usually participates in a cause related event, offering and giving sponsors a customized challenge coin, to say thank you for their donations, will act as an added incentive to make a pledge. It will also give them a little something extra to look forward to about sponsoring next year’s event.

Designing Coins to Reach Full Fundraising Potential

To maximize your personalized coins fundraising potential, it is important to design coins in way that both the non-profit and your sponsors will appreciate. As a leader in the challenge coin industry, we have some design ideas that will help make your team’s coin unique and collectible.

For the best results, you should choose a double sided challenge coin and:

  • On one side, include the event name, date and, if allowed, the event’s or the non-profit organization’s official logo.
  • Your company, team name and logo on the opposite side.
  • Use a shape other than round,  like a star, heart, diamond or a combination  of two shapes
  • Include add-ons like glitter, danglers, cut-out or bobbles to give the coin character and flare
  • Most importantly, trust the creation of your challenge coin design to the professionals at Signature Coins.

For annual events, non-profits encourage participants to get sponsors and raise money by offering the individual members incentives, like customized memorabilia and admission to special events. Team members can boost their fundraising potential by applying this same principle to their sponsors using personalized challenge coins.

Contact Signature Coins today at to learn more about our coin design options and take advantage of our digital proofing system, with unlimited revisions, and fast shipping all free of charge.  You can also call our office at 1-800-953-3607 to speak with a one of our courteous coin experts.

Using Custom Challenge Coins For Branding Purposes

April 18th, 2011

In the past, challenge coins were predominantly used by the military.  These days,  groups, organizations, and businesses also create and exchange custom coins with their friends, family members, neighbors, employees, and customers.  In addition to being 100% unique, they tend to be valued by the people that receive them.  That is because of the amount of time and skill that goes into creating them.

One look at a custom challenge coin and you will see its fine craftsmanship.  Incredibly detailed and designed in a way that reflects the customer’s interests, these items are unique and distinctive.  People understand the value of the challenge coin by simply holding it in their hand.  They can feel the weight of the metal and trace the raised areas of the coin with their fingertip.

Feelings of Pride and Ownership

Much like a prize winner’s medal, custom challenge coins evoke feelings of pride and ownership.  The people that are awarded them tend to be exceptional in their thoughts and actions.  These tokens of appreciation remain an important part of military culture.    In fact, it isn’t unusual to see different branches being represented in the artwork that we create.

Groups and Organizations As Well As Military Units Use Coins

Different units of the Army, Navy, Coast Guard, Air Force, and Marines often contact us with their design ideas.  So do other types of groups and organizations.  Businesses of all size like to use custom challenge coins for branding purposes.  These memorable items take the place of traditional business cards.  That is because they are truly unique.

Custom challenge coins make a great impression on whomever they are given to.  As stated before, they are as unique as the customers that order them.  They can be single or double sided.  They can also feature a number of identifying marks including the company’s name, logo, email or web address as well as a motto or slogan in an attempt to be distinguishable.

If you want to make a bold statement, you should consider contacting Signature Coins with your design ideas.  We can come up with the type of challenge coin that makes the competition uneasy.  Call 1-800-953-3607 or email

The Benefit of Ordering a Pre-Production Sample of Your Custom Challenge Coin

April 12th, 2011

In most situations, once we have received a customer’s approval on the digital proof of a challenge coin design, we start production and fulfill the coin order immediately.  However, there are times when a customer would like get a hands on look and feel for the challenge coin before we manufacture the entire quantity.  In cases like these the customer receives at what we call a pre-production sample.

A Picture is Worth a 1,000 Words, but a Sample…

A pre-production sample is a physical custom challenge coin with the customer’s exact design. Having a physical sample not only helps customers know exactly how their coins will look and feel, but will also reveal aspects the customer might consider changing, but would not have otherwise noticed.

For example, a customer needs 500 customized challenge coins as keepsakes for an event and thinks that 2” is the good size.  As a safeguard, the customer requests a pre-production sample.  Upon receipt of the sample, the customer decides that 2” is too large of a coin and changes the coin size on the order.

Signature Coins charges a nominal fee for our pre-production samples.  The prices vary depending on the size of the coin. Some customers have 3D molds, etc., that would add to the pre-production sample’s cost. Our standard challenge coin pre-production sample costs are as follows:

  • A 1.5 inch pre-production sample is $186.00
  • A 1.75 inch pre-production sample is $200.00
  • A 2 inch pre-production sample is $236.00

You Can’t Put a Price on Satisfaction

The cost of the sample is non-refundable, but allows the customer to see the actual coin prior to going into to full production. The customer in the example above ends up saving himself a great amount of disappointment and money, even though pre-production sample come with a cost. Not to mention, you can’t put a price on satisfaction!

Signature Coins is committed to delivering high quality, fully customized and unique challenge coins for any and every occasion. Offering pre-production samples is just another way in which we ensure our customers are 100% satisfied.

For more information, to share your ideas and suggestions or place a custom challenge coin order, contact our office at 1-800-953-3607 or by emailing

How to Get Your Quality Custom Challenge Coins Faster

April 5th, 2011

It is not uncommon for customers to request that we complete a challenge coin order faster than our guaranteed delivery time of 14 days or less.  Signature Coins has no problem fulfilling requests like this because it is possible, on an occasion, to have coins manufactured in less time.

Quality Coins in Less Time

If your main goal is to have great looking high quality custom product on hand to distribute at meetings, ceremonies, or other functions, we have one industry trick that may help speed up your production time. Keep in mind, however, that certain sacrifices will have to be made in order to get your challenge coins that much faster.

To help speed up and simplify the production process, we often suggest eliminating the use of colors in your challenge coin design. What this means is your challenge coin will have a finish that consists entirely of the metal plating you choose.

All Metal Coins Are Quite Popular

Though this may seem to be a conservative and somewhat uninteresting design idea for your keepsake challenge coin, we can assure you that it is not. As a matter of fact, they have become very popular because of the following reasons:

  • Choosing no colors reduces production time
  • Coins without color fills cost less
  • The option of taking full advantage of antique plating
  • Coins are given a classic and traditional look
  • Due to the reduced production time, you may receive coins faster

Removing the color fills option from your challenge coin actually creates opportunities to use some of our other design options, like antique plating.

Our antique finishes are available in gold, silver and copper. These very classy and attention getting design choices are a great replacement to coloring your challenge coin. With the antiquing option, the overall background is stressed to make the coin appear older while the text and graphics stand out giving the coin a deeper appearance

Now that you know creating an all metal challenge coin is not an unreasonable compromise we hope you consider them the next time you need to put a rush on your customized coins.

Contact one of our knowledgeable representatives at to find out more ways to save time and money on your custom coin order. Or, call us at 1-800-953-3607 the next time you need challenge coins and need them fast.