1951 Dime Value Guide (“P”, “D” , “S” & Error Coins)

Jenson Cambell

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The 1951 Dime might just be the best-kept secret in the hobby. As a member of the Roosevelt Dimes, it doesn’t get a lot of attention, yet it has some very valuable varieties. Plus, you can fish out some good examples from bank-issued coin rolls and flip them for a profit.

Faithful readers, this is the 1951 Dime value guide, where we tackle everything from the coin’s features to its common errors. But to highlight the value of the different varieties of the 1951 Dime, please consider our coin value chart.

Coin Valuation Chart

Coin Condition Estimated Value
1951-P Dime 1951-P Proof Dime 1951-D Dime 1951-S Dime
Heavily Circulated

(G4 – XF40)

$2.15 $2.15 $2.15
About Uncirculated (AU50 – AU58+) $2.15 – $2.65 $2.15 – $2.65 $2.15 – $2.65

(MS60 – MS64+)

$4.90 – $20 $15 – $70 $4.90 – $20 $6.75 – $25
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS65 or higher) $20 – $3,450 $40 – $28,000 $20 – $1,700 $25 – $2,000

1951 Dime: Historical Background

1951 Dime

The 1950s was a different era; most of the first world was recovering from the effects of the Second World War, and resources (human or otherwise) were in short supply. To make due, the U.S. Mint cut corners on its path toward meeting its mintage goals.

The 1951 Dime was one of the affected coins, with the majority emerging with poorly-struck reliefs. One detail that the U.S. Mint struggled to strike was the horizontal bands depicted on the torch that appears on the coin’s reverse. Only a few dimes were struck with well-defined bands. These Roosevelt Dimes are recognized as their own variety and are named Full Bands (FB) or Full Torch (FT).

However, most 1951 Dimes were struck with fuzzy bands that lacked distinction between the individual bands. To demonstrate the difference between the two, below is a pictorial comparison of what is considered a regular band (the regular strikes) and what qualifies as the Full Band.

The dime on the left is of the regular band variety, while its opposite is of the Full Bands variety. The lower bands on the left torch lack distinction. Among the Roosevelt Dimes, that is all it takes to disqualify a coin as a member of the Full Bands variety.

1951 Dime: Design and Features

The Roosevelt Dime has virtually remained unchanged since its inception in 1946. The responsibility of designing the Roosevelt Dime was entrusted to the then-chief engraver of the U.S. Mint, John Ray Sinnock. Those 1946 designs for both the obverse and the reverse are the same ones that were used on the 1951 Dime.

1951 Dime: Physical Characteristics

Physical Feature Notes
Color Silver
Shape Round
Metallic Composition 90% Silver

10% Copper

Weight 2.50 grams
Diameter 17.90 mm
Edge Reeded

The Obverse of the 1951 Dime

1951 Dime obverse feature

The 1951 Dime’s obverse features a very prominent portrait of the longest-serving president of the United States, Franklin D. Roosevelt. This depiction of the fallen president is partially surrounded by the legend “LIBERTY” and the inscription “IN GOD WE TRUST.” Under FDR’s cut-off neck are the sculptor’s initials “J.S” and the date “1951.”

The Reverse of the 1951 Dime

1951 Dime reverse feature

At the center of the 1951 Dime’s reverse are three prominent images: a blazing torch in the middle and olive and oak sprigs on either side of the burning torch. Between these items is the inscription “E PLURIBUS UNUM” and the mint mark, which is either “D,” “S,” or blank, depending on the mint of origin.

To round off the design (literarily) is the country of issue “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” and the denomination “ONE DIME.”

1951 Dime: Varieties

In 1951, the big three mints struck 191,096,602 dimes between them. Some mints like the Philadelphia and San Francisco Mints struck proof and prooflike 1951 Dimes in addition to regular coinage. Let’s break down the value of the varieties that emerged from all these facilities.

1951-P Dime Value

1951-P Dime Value
1951 10C (Regular Strike) Roosevelt Dime
  • U.S. Mint: Philadelphia
  • Mintage: 103,880,102
  • Mint Mark: None

Because of its high mintage, we believe that the 1951-P Dime has the most surviving members. These coins will be abundant through the grades up until MS67. The population of these grows thinner beyond this point.

A vast majority of 1951-P Dimes will be in circulated condition and lacking full bands. At this state, they are worth $2.15 between the G4 and AU55+ grades. Dimes in the AU58 and AU58+ condition are worth $2.65 regardless of their condition.

In mint state, examples with regular bands are fairly common until the MS67+ condition. Until that point, their values range between $4.90 in the MS60 grade and $175 in the MS67+ state. In the MS68 condition, their values soar due to their rarity. Examples in this state are worth $2,000.

1951-P Dimes with full bands are typically attainable between the MS64 and MS67 grades. In these states, they are worth between $20 and $140. If you’re willing to spend the money, you can find examples in MS67+ and MS68 conditions, which are worth $1,300 and $3,450, respectively.

Coin Condition Estimated Value
Regular Strike Full Bands
Good (G4) $2.15
Very Good (VG8) $2.15
Fine (F12) $2.15
Very Fine (VF20) $2.15
Extremely Fine (XF40) $2.15
About Uncirculated (AU50) $2.15
About Uncirculated (AU58) $2.65
Uncirculated (MS60) $4.90
Uncirculated (MS64) $10 $20
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS65) $20 $25
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS68) $2,000 $3,450

In the open market, only a few MS68 examples have sold for higher prices, which is an unfair assumption, considering there are only a few of these coins in existence. One 1951-P Dime sold in 2017 for $4,465, while another sold in 2009 for $4,600. Both 1951-P Dimes were graded MS68FB.

1951-P Proof Dime Value

1951-P Proof Dime Value
1951 10C, DCAM (Proof) Roosevelt Dime
  • U.S. Mint: Philadelphia
  • Mintage: 57,500
  • Mint Mark: None

The Philadelphia Mint made only 57,500 proof coins, making them the rarest and most valuable variety. And since these coins were only sold to collectors, they will be in mint condition up to the PR69 state.

Depending on the conditions it’s been subjected to, a 1951-P Proof Dime will show different levels of cameo contrast. Proof dimes with little to no cameo are the least valuable and are worth between $15 in PR60 and $500 in PR69.

Cameo 1951-P Proof Dimes typically exist from PR63 to PR69 grades. The value of these coins ranges between $36 and $1,850. The Deep Cameo dimes are the most spectacular, with values that range from $1,150 to $28,000.

Unfortunately, no 1951-P Proof Penny has sold for $28,000. The only 1951-P Proof Dime to come even remotely close was graded PR68DCAM, and it sold for $23,500.

1951 10C PR68 Deep Cameo
1951 10C PR68 Deep Cameo Sold for $23,500
Coin Condition Estimated Value
Proof Cameo Deep Cameo
Uncirculated (PR60) $15
Uncirculated (PR61) $17
Uncirculated (PR62) $19
Uncirculated (PR63) $24 $36
Uncirculated (PR64) $31 $60
Uncirculated (PR65) $40 $90 $1,150
Uncirculated (PR66) $55 $110 $3,700
Uncirculated (PR67) $90 $175 $5,000
Uncirculated (PR68) $275 $575 $17,500
Uncirculated (PR69) $500 $1,850 $28,000
Uncirculated (PR70)

1951-D Dime Value

1951-D Dime Value
1951-D/D 10C RPM FS-501, FB (Regular Strike) Roosevelt Dime
  • U.S. Mint: Denver
  • Mintage: 56,529,000
  • Mint Mark: D

1951-D Dimes are just as valuable as the 1951-D Dimes in the lower and mid grades. The circulated regular strikes are worth between $2.15 and $2.56. In circulated conditions, dimes with regular bands are worth $4.90 in the MS60 condition and $1,350 in the rare and elusive MS68 state.

The 1951-D Dimes with full bands are fairly common and start appearing in the MS64 state. They are worth between $15 in the MS64 state and $265 in the MS67+ grade. In MS68, these coins are pretty scarce and worth $1,700.

Many coins in the MS68 state have surpassed that $1,700 ceiling. It’s actually encouraging that the highest auction price ever realized is $8,337. And while the listing does not contain any images of the coin, we can confirm that it was graded MS68FB.

Coin Condition Estimated Value
Regular Strike Full Bands
Good (G4) $2.15
Very Good (VG8) $2.15
Fine (F12) $2.15
Very Fine (VF20) $2.15
Extremely Fine (XF40) $2.15
About Uncirculated (AU50) $2.15
About Uncirculated (AU58) $2.65
Uncirculated (MS60) $4.90
Uncirculated (MS64) $10 $15
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS65) $20 $25
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS68) $1,350 $1,700

1951-S Dime Value

1951-S Dime Value
1951-S 10C, FB (Regular Strike) Roosevelt Dime
  • U.S. Mint: San Francisco
  • Mintage: 31,630,000
  • Mint Mark: S

Among the 31 million dimes that the San Francisco Mint struck in 1951, an unknown number were prooflike. However, it doesn’t matter whether you have a prooflike 1951-S Dime or not because, grade for grade, these coins have equal values. You can tell a 1951-S Dime is prooflike by the “PL” designation at the end of its grade.

In circulated condition, 1951-S Dimes are worth between $2.15 and $2.65. In their mint state, their values range between $6.75 and $300, depending on their condition.

1951-S Dimes with full bands can be had between the MS64 and MS68 conditions. In these states, they are worth between $20 and $2,000. Examples in the MS68 condition are fewer but attainable.

Coin Condition Estimated Value
Regular Strike Full Bands
Good (G4) $2.15
Very Good (VG8) $2.15
Fine (F12) $2.15
Very Fine (VF20) $2.15
Extremely Fine (XF40) $2.15
About Uncirculated (AU50) $2.15
About Uncirculated (AU58) $2.65
Uncirculated (MS60) $6.75
Uncirculated (MS64) $15 $20
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS65) $25 $30
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS68) $300 $2,000

The most expensive 1951-S Dime sold nearly two decades ago for $6,037. And while its listing fails to specify whether it had Full Bands or not, we can confirm that it was graded MS68 by PCGS.

1951 Dime: Common Errors

In 1951, shortcuts were taken in order to meet mintage targets, and we got some interesting error coins. Below are the common errors that plagued the 1951 Dime:

1951-D/D Repunched Mint Marks (RPM)

1951-DD 10C RPM FS-501

Quite a few 1951-D Dimes left the Denver Mint with Repunched Mints Marks (RPM). This a practice where they punch a mint mark over an existing mint mark. And because a “D” mint mark was being struck over another “D” mint mark, we call the emerging coins “D over D,” or simply D/D.

In uncirculated condition, 1951-D/D Dimes are worth between $5 and $21. The regular strikes will be fairly common between the MS60 and MS67 conditions. They are worth between $26 and $250.

1951-D/D Dimes are more desirable with Full Bands, and they are worth more. Their values typically range from $28 to $450.

Coin Condition Estimated Value
Regular Strike Full Bands
Good (G4) $5
Very Good (VG8) $6
Fine (F12) $8
Very Fine (VF20) $10
Extremely Fine (XF40) $15
About Uncirculated (AU50) $20
About Uncirculated (AU58) $20
Uncirculated (MS60) $26 $28
Uncirculated (MS64) $50 $65
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS65) $70 $75
Brilliant Uncirculated (MS67) $250 $450

1951 Dime Wrong Planchet Errors

1951 dime Wrong Planchet Error

It’s not uncommon for coin planchets to get mixed up. Remember, these facilities make all sorts of coins. The coin in the image comes from an eBay seller, there’s a 1951-D Dime that was struck on a bronze penny planchet.

Since the penny’s planchet is slightly larger than the dime’s, this copper dime appears to have a thick rim around its edges. The owner of this coin is asking for $20,000, an unreasonable ask, in my opinion.

Another penny was struck on what ANACS describes as a thin planchet. The coin only weighs 2.23 grams and is in AU58 condition. This coin sold in 2004 for $9.

1951 Dime Off-Center Strike Error

1951 Dime Off-Center Strikes error

These errors usually arise from faulty collars, causing the planchet to be struck while out of alignment with the die. The value of a 1951 Dime Struck Off-Center depends on the severity of the error and the coin’s condition.

In 2007, an MS60-graded dime struck 80% Off-center sold for $69. Two years later, a better-graded (MS62) dime struck 50% off-center sold for $322. In recent times, a 1951 Dime struck 65% off-center sold for $372. This coin was graded MS63 by NGC.

Final Thoughts

A 1951 Dime can serve as a bullion as well as a collectible coin. The coin contains silver and can work as a storage for your wealth. As a collectible coin, you can acquire better-looking examples in uncirculated condition for as low as $4.90. It also has many valuable varieties and error coins. And since the secret is already out on proof coins, I would focus my attention on 1951-D/D Dimes.

1951 Dime Value chart

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