Coin of the Week

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Over this past weekend, the Tampa Bay area celebrated their annual Gasparilla parade. This is a huge parade featuring floats and regular land lubbers dressed up as pirates! It’s actually a pretty neat event that is lots of fun to attend, considering it features a large parade and a children’s parade.

In honor of this, I thought I’d talk about the Real Pirates of the Caribbean coins produced by the New Zealand Mint. These coins feature actual pirates from history in full color. They can be purchased in a neat treasure chest set.

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The four famous pirates featured are Blackbeard, Calico Jack Rackham, Henry Avery and Bartholomew Roberts. Each pirate is decorated in full color and has his name listed below the image. The box looks like a small wooden treasure chest and opens to reveal the four coins, plus a skull and cross bones necklace. There were only 8,000 sets minted, so that makes these coins pretty unique.

I like that these coins take advantage of the popularity of pirates that was in the media in 2011. On the tails of the hugely successful Disney Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, these coins were a smart move by the mint. I think these coins are great for historians or even little boys who love to be pirates!

Happy Monday!

“May the Force be with you”

–Katie

Gold (not love) is in the Air!

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A couple of weeks ago, my mom and I were shopping in one of the local malls and I saw something that caught my eye. There was a store for a company I had heard about while researching a piece regarding gold in makeup. I sort of chuckled to myself and then pointed it out to my mom. This company, Orogold, specializes in making cosmetics that contain gold flakes.

At the time of the research, I had figured that the company was probably just online based and had a small clientele. I was completely shocked to discover that they had a store. So, now anyone in my area looking for gold flaked moisturizer or a gold face mask can head to the mall to get some.

And the gold obsession doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon. Gold flakes can be found in nail polish and even clothes. Check out this article about an underwear set that is made of gold. It will only cost about 500,000 Pounds but it will go great with the gold dress that is mentioned in the article.

I’ve done a lot of research over the past few months on places that people can find gold and it all has lead me to one conclusion. Gold fever is real and lasting. Myself, I am not that interested in owning a bunch of gold things, but I guess if I was going to splurge on an off the wall gold experience, I’d get myself that chocolate ice cream sundae with the gold flake sprinkles. That way, I’d get my gold and eat it too. 🙂

“May the Force be with you!”

–Katie

 

Coin of the Week

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It’s another Happy Monday! I’ve mostly featured silver and gold coins in my posts up to this point. Today, I want to highlight a platinum coin. The Australian Platypus coin is minted by the Perth Mint in a limited mintage of 30,000. Each coin is struck in 99.95% pure platinum and feature a platypus.

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I really like the seaweed details and the air bubbles included in the design. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it now, the Perth Mint really focuses on artistic aspects of the images on the coins. This coin is another example of their priority on the details. There is even a beautiful matte blast finish on these coins.

I feel really drawn to a lot of the designs that the Perth Mint does. They like to highlight animals, places and generally interesting things. For me, as a budding coin collector, the coins I would want to focus on would be visually engaging and have a interesting subject.

“May the Force be with you!”

–Katie

Minting of Circulating Coins

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Minting of Circulating Coins

Wow! I just read an amazing article by CoinNews. They took a special tour at the United States Denver Mint and are doing a several article series about the mint. This article was all about how circulation coins are made. What a fascinating and fairly easy to understand process.

The article contains a lot of videos and photos of the machines inside the mint. It was pretty neat to realize how quickly our circulating coins are made. The article goes through receiving the metal coils all the way to the coins being bagged and put into a vault for short term storage.

I really recommend reading the article and watching the videos. I had previously read about all of the steps, but this gave me further clarification and insight into how our pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters get made. If you ever wanted to know, now’s your chance to learn!

TGIF!

“May the Force be with you!”

–Katie

A Dip into Coin Collecting

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The other day, I was talking with my supervisor about a page I am working and the subject of Early Release came up. This a special label that some coins have and it can effect the value of that coin. He asked me about coin grading and I told him what I thought Early Release meant. Turns out, I was wrong. So I got to thinking about some of the Coin Grading labels and their meanings.

I guess the first thing to do is talk about coin grading. Coins are sent to a third-party who evaluates each coin’s weight, purity and physical condition. The two major companies are Numismatic Guaranty Corporation (NGC) and Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS). The grading is done on a scale of 1-70, which is called the Sheldon Scale. These numbers have different meanings for the appearance of a coin. In addition, coins can have extra labels, designated by the coin grading company.

For example, First Strike from the PCGS is the same as an Early Release from the NGC. This means that the coin is graded within the first 30 days of its release from the mint. I thought this meant that the U.S. Mint, or whichever, shipped a bunch of coins to the grading service and then those were released to the public. That is wrong. A coin collector must receive their coin from the mint and then re-ship it to the coin service within the initial 30 days of release.

While this is by no means a thorough examination of coin grading, I think sometimes writing this stuff out can help to understand it better. There are lots of facts and processes that are involved in coin collecting and I am frequently being taught new concepts and ideas. I will do my best to impart some of my wisdom on you 🙂

“May the Force be with you!”

–Katie

Coin of the Week

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Hello Monday. Another weekend has passed and the toils of the work-week have begun. I don’t have any good stories about the coin show yet. For today’s Coin of the Week, I wanted to highlight a more popular coin, the Gold Britannia from Great Britain.

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These coins feature the regal Britannia, Britain’s version of a patron goddess. Essentially, she is the isle of Britain personified. These coins have a changing image of Britannia and the design in this picture is from 2012. She stands proud with a trident and shield.

This reminds me of Lady Liberty from U.S. coins. Both of the ladies have great importance to their respective nations and that comes across strongly in the images. This image makes me believe in the might and power that Great Britain once held. With Britannia standing tall, the British people should feel proud of their coins.

It has occurred to me that I only discuss my feelings on the designs of these coins. There is a great deal of history behind all of the coins I write about, some of which can be found if you go to Gainesville Coins, or do some internet searching. My goal with these posts is not to educate about the history, but more bring attention to the fact that coins can be beautiful.

Happy Monday!

“May the Force be with you!”

–Katie

2013 in Review

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2013 in Review

Curious as to how coins fared in the market for 2013? Well, so is everybody else. This article from CoinWorld gives a pretty decent breakdown of where the money in the bullion industry went. For me, with this as my first year looking at that stuff, the flow is pretty interesting. I was surprised to see that rare coins performed pretty well and that quality of the coins was the most important feature. Who knew?!

For more information, check out the link!

“May the Force be with you!”

–Katie