Definition:  A cud is a die break that involves the rim and at least a little bit of the adjacent field or design.  The vast majority of sizable die breaks are cuds.  Cuds can assume a wide variety of shapes including ovoid, crescentic, and irregular.  Most cuds represent spontaneous brittle failure.  A small minority arise as the result of impacts. No part of a design element will show on a cud.

A large cud is seen on the reverse face of this 1988 cent.  The obverse face shows a featureless pucker where coin metal withdrew from the obverse die and bulged into the void in the reverse die face.

 Many cuds maintain a consistent size and shape through a production run.  Some cuds grow larger through a production run as additional pieces of die steel break off.


Shown above is a three-stage cud progression in a 1982 cent.  In Stage 1, the cud is ovoid.  In subsequent stages the cud grows larger and more irregular.

The images below shows an actual marginal die break that occurred on a 1998 Mardi Gras token called “A Moment in Time”. This die break will form a cud on each token that this die strikes. Images are courtesy of Ken Potter. 

AMomentInTimeDieCudTopView copyAMomentInTimeDieCuda copy

Another marginal die break is seen in the images below. This is a token believed to be from the Alcoholics Anonymous (no date) for 6 months being sober. This die will produce cuds on each token that it strikes. Images are courtesy of Ken Potter.

 AADieCudFace copyAADieCudSide copy

Irregular Cuds

Ovoid Cuds

Crescentric Cuds

Circumferential Cuds

Rim to Rim Cuds



In determining what a cud is and what is a retained cud, circulation wear must be factored in. In some cases, a retained cud may be listed as a cud because circulation wear has obliterated the telltale signs of a partial design element on the area inside the rim to rim die crack.

If a listed cud proves to be a retained cud, a new file number will be issued to that anomaly and noted.