Worldwide Bi-Metallic Collectors Club

WBCC Newsmail 176, Volume 4, December25, 1999
Composed with help from members of the
Worldwide Bi-metallic Collectors Club (WBCC)
and weekly published by Martin Peeters, Netherlands,
Focal Point of the WBCC, martinp@westbrabant.net

Dear WBCC members and non WBCC members,

This is the last WBCC Newsmail in this Millunnium.
I hope you enjoy reading it!!

1. My favorite Bi-(or Tri-)metallic contest..by Martin Peeters, Netherlands

The contest for the most beautiful Bi- or Tri-metallic 1999 is still open.
So, what is your favorite? The contest is open till December 31th 1999 and
the result will be published in WBCC Newsmail 177, January 1, 2000

2. Bi-metallic token from the Netherlands (1)..by Frans Dubois, Netherlands

The Dutch city of Nijmegen issued a Bi-metallic milleniumtoken. I am only
informed about the issue and the image will be as soon as possible in the
homepage. If  you are interested in this bimetallic city token (price is
$5,-), please contact me on dubois.f@wxs.nl

3. Bi-metallic token from the Netherlands (2)..by Frans Dubois, Netherlands

Two other Bi-metallic tokens are issued by a cooperation in Rotterdam, PWS.
There are 2 different sizes: 26,5 mm and 30 mm. These tokens are available
after January 10, 2000. If you are interested in these tokens, please let me
know because there are only a few available for collectors. The price of
these tokens is $10, and $12,-

4. Bi-metallic from Latvia (1)............by Wladek Gebczyk, Poland
*Latvia 1999 2 Lati
Latvia has struck a new 2 Lats 1999 Bi-metallic coin. 2 lats (Ls 2 in short)
Measurements: diameter 26.30 mm (diameter of the central circle - 18.21 mm),
weight 9.50 g (weight of the central circle - 4.50 g, weight of the outer
ring - 5.00 g). Material of the central circle - cupro-zinc-nickel, material
of the outer ring - cupro-nickel.
The large coat of arms of the Republic of Latvia is placed in the central
circle. The inscriptions LATVIJAS REPUBLIKA and 1999, each arranged in a
semicircle and separated by two dots, are in the outer ring respectively
above and beneath the central motif.
The upper part of the central circle features a cow, with the figure 2
directly beneath. The inscription LATI is arranged in the bottom part of the
outer ring. The background motif (clouds and grass) links the central circle
with the outer ring.
Edge Corrugated; two inscriptions LATVIJAS BANKA (Bank of Latvia), separated
by dots.

5. Bi-metallic from Latvia (2)............by Martin Peeters, Netherlands

The following can be read in the Latvia Bank Homepage

Press Release of December 8, 1999
On Issuing of a 2-lats Bimetal Coin

The Bank of Latvia has issued a new 2-lats coin. This coin was produced
applying a modern technological solution, i.e., bimetal mintage. From nowon,
we will encounter three types of 2-lats circulation coins.

What makes this coin different?
The coin consists as if of two parts, each struck from a different alloy.
Yellow metal has been used for the central circle, whereas the outer ring is
made of a silvery grey metal, just like the previously issued 2-lats coins.
The new coins are slightly larger than the old ones. While the basic design
of the coin is borrowed from the 2-lats coin struck in 1992, there are a few
differences. To safeguard against forgeries, you should look at the edge of
the coin - it must be corrugated and contain two inscriptions LATVIJAS BANKA
(Bank of Latvia) separated by dots. On the old coins the inscription was
placed on a smooth edge.

Why do we need new 2-lats coins?
In March 1993 the lats was put back into circulation, and since then
inflation in Latvia has gradually decreased to reach the 3% level
characteristic of developed economies. During the past six years the lats
has held its own: since February 1994, the exchange rate of the lats against
the SDR basket of major world has remained unaltered. This makes lats coins
a valuable currency, and every effort should be made to protect them against
forgery. To this end, it was decided to apply the latest minting
technologies to produce a bimetal coin of two different alloys.
It should be noted, however, that Latvian currency is generally well
protected against forgeries, and the amount of counterfeit Latvian banknotes
and coins is so small that it has no effect on the country's. For instance,
the number of forgeries discovered during the first ten months of 1999
account for only 0.002% of the currency in circulation at November 1, 1999.
Moreover, counterfeit banknotes are practically non-existent. 2-lats coins
are quite popular as a means of payment: they account for about 6 million
lats or one third of the total amount of coins in circulation.
Unfortunately, they have also proven popular with forgers: two-lats
imitations account for three quarters of all counterfeits, worth 45 thousand
lats, discovered over the past six years. Issuance of the new bimetal coin
will contribute to the security of settlements while making life more
difficult for criminals.

Do I need to exchange my 2-lats coins for the new ones?
No. The old 2-lats coins will remain in circulation alongside the new. Both
the new bimetal coin and the two types of earlier coins, respectively
featuring a cow and an ethnographic motif, are legal tender in the Republic
of Latvia.

When will the new coins appear in circulation?
The resolution on putting these coins into circulation has already been
adopted, so you may receive them at your bank as early as tomorrow. The Bank
of Latvia issues currency through commercial banks. Commercial banks choose
the banknotes or coins in denominations preferred by their customers -
depositors, companies and state institutions (for salaries etc.). As a
result, when withdrawing cash at your commercial bank or getting change at a
store, post office or elsewhere you may get both the old and new 2-lats

Where were the new 2-lats coins struck?
The new 2-lats coins were struck by the British Royal Mint, which placed the
winning bid at an international competition. It is at this mint that 2-lats
and other silver coins were produced for pre-war Latvia. In the nineties,
the British Royal Mint also struck several silver commemorative coins for
Latvia, including the series of eight commemorative coins dedicated to the
800th anniversary of the City of Riga and the button-shaped coin
commemorating the millennium.

6. Bi-metallics from Uruguay once planned..by Paul Baker, UK

Sometime ago in the "Weltmunzkatalog 1996/97" (Schon) I found two
interesting pieces listed in the Uruguay section. Listed straight after the
normal circulation coins of 1994 I found mention of Bi-metallic 5 and 10
Pesos coins. Values are not shown for the pieces - this suggested that the
pieces are perhaps patterns or essays and as such have not yet been offered
for sale or perhaps even do not exist. The listing gave dates as being just
three digit "199". (Presumably meaning that the fourth digit would be added
later dependent upon any later official issue of coins with these designs.).
The alloys used for the coins were detailed as Nickel-Aluminium-Bronze and
Copper-Nickel-Zinc with the colours of one pieces being the other way around
to the other.

With the "arrival" of a Uruguayan numismatist to the WBCC I thought my best
way of getting further details on these Bi-metallic pieces would be to ask
him what he knew. Carlos Suarez has now managed to find out some further
information of these two coins. Carlos has found out that the same
legislation that authorised the Central Bank of Uruguay to issue the
circulating 1994 series i.e. 10, 20 and 50 Centesimos, 1 and 2 Pesos
(KM-102, 105, 106, 103 and 104 respectively) also authorised the issue of
Bi-metallic 5 and 10 Pesos coins

The legislation allowed for the issue of up to 40 million pieces of each of
these two denominations. The 5 Pesos coins were planned to be of 25 mm
diameter and a mass of up to 7.5 grams. Furthermore the outer-ring would be
made of 65% Cu, 25% Zn and 10% Ni (silvery colour), and the inner-core of
92% Cu, 6% Al and 2% Ni (yellow colour). The 10 Pesos coins were planned to
be of 28.5 mm diameter and a mass of up to 10.0 grams. Furthermore the
outer-ring would be made of 92% Cu, 6% Al and 2% Ni, and the inner-core of
65% Cu, 25% Zn and 10% Ni.

These two coins however were never issued. The legislation did however
stipulate what the general designs on these two coins would comprise of. The
design requirements were such that these two denominations would look rather
similar to the 1 and 2 Pesos coins (KM-103 and 104) i.e. obverse:- bust of
Jose Artigas (taken from a painting by Juan Manuel Blanes, known in Uruguay
as "the painter of the nation") surrounded by the text "República Oriental
del Uruguay" and reverse:- a large "5" or "10" (as applicable) with the "$"
symbol (for Pesos) to the left, then below this the full denomination in
words and under this the date. The coins were to be round with plain edges.

If these two coins had been issued then the mass of each denomination would
have been set by the Central Bank of Uruguay, within the limits stated in
the legislation. This legislation also allowed for a tolerance of 3% for
each metal component in the final alloy. This particular law is still valid,
so it is quite possible that in the future this specification will be used
for new coins. So we had all better keep an eye out !

7. Encased coin........Yossi Barzelay, Israel

I found in a small coin shop in Israel an encased 1 cent from the USA.
Encased coin: 1 cent 1937
Size: 36 mm
Outer ring: Aluminum
Obverse: Keep me and you will have good luck
Reverse: Triangle Realty Co.
Lofts - Stores - Factories
LA 4-3200-LO 5-8193
202 West 40 St. N.Y.C.
Condition: VF a small rim bent

8. New Bi-metallic images......by Rod Sell, WBCC Homepage Provider

This weeks new pictures in the WBCC Homepage:

*Switzerland 1 Sablier with error VII
Close Up of Error

*Gibraltar 1996 75 Ecus

*Switzerland 2000 5 Franc Basler

*Latvia 1999 2 Lati

* China 10 Yuan Commemoratives for Return of Macau obv
* Reverse

9. WBCC and PR........by Martin Peeters, WBCC Focal Point

Next year, January 21 till 23, the International Coin Convention is hold as
every year in Basel, Zwitserland. This leading International event also
called The World Money Fair, attended by exhibotors from 30 countries of all
fice coninentals, is the very first numismatic world event of the year 2000
and its result will signyficanty influence the upcomming numismatic
activities of the year. The following National Mints, Banks and others will
be there:

* Andorra Mint, British Royal Mint, Bulgarian Mint, Mexico Mint, Japanese
Mint, Lithuania Mint, Finland Mint, French Mint, Austria Mint, Poland Mint,
Royal Austrialia Mint, Royal Belgium Mint, Royal Canadian Mint, Royal Dutch
Mint, San Marino Mint, Spanish Mint, German Mint, Swiss Mint, Perth Mint,
Portuguese Mint, San Marino Mint, Singapore Mint, Turkish Mint, United
States Mint, South Africa Mint, Vatican Mint.

The following Privat Mint:
* Huguenin and Kramer Medaillieurs, Mastercoin, MDM, Munz-Pragstatt Munchen,
Vereinigte Deutsche Nickel, Valcambi Mint.

The Following National Banks:
* Mexico Bank, Latvia Bank, Lithuania Bank, Russia Bank

The Following International coin dealers:
* Coin Invest Trust Vaduz, Downie's, Emporium Hamburg,

Further: Cambarra Coin World, Collectors Universe, Cronica Numismatica,
e-Bay, Krause Publication, Munzen-Revue,

And many more. The Worldwide Bi-metallic Collectors will be represented by
Frans Dubois, Jack Hepler and Martin Peeters. You will find the WBCC at
table 384.

10. Collectors Universe article...by Martin Peeters, Netherlands

The following article can be read in Collectors Universe pages,
http://www.collectors.com/worldcoins/ , and it is written by WBCC member
Richard Giedroyc, USA.

*Guernsey 1999 5 Pounds

Y2K Solution: Guernsey Says Two Heads Are Better Than One
Richard Giedroyc - December 17, 1999

There are a lot of fears regarding the potential Y2K millennium computer
programs and how the computerized world may come to an end as we know it
Jan. 1, 2000. Fear not. The Bailiwick of Guernsey has found the solution,
deciding that perhaps two heads are better than one. What better way is
there to demonstrate this but with a circulation commemorative ringed
bimetal 5-pound coin marking the millennium on which Queen Elizabeth II is
portrayed not once, but twice on the obverse. This is not an error coin. Her
portrait isn't double struck. Her portrait does not appear in jugate, or by
depicting her in two different poses, or by depicting her two different
stages of her life.

The obverse of this rather unusual coin depicts the current portrait of the
queen facing right at center with a second, smaller version of the same bust
at the 6:00 position. The center of the coin on which the larger portrait
appears is composed of what appears to be aureate-nickel or bronze. The ring
appears to be composed of nickel-steel. The smaller portrait on the ring is
included with the legend "Elizabeth II Bailiwick of Guernsey."

The reverse of the 1999 Millennium 5-pound coin is also unusual. The design
at the center depicts a globe held by hands from behind (only the fingers
are visible) with "The year 2000 millennium" at the center. The outer ring
contains the date and denomination accompanied by what appears to be a
sunburst and horizontal lines on the bottom half of the coin.

What also makes this coin so unusual is the extremely high relief on the
Globe, which presents the impression the coin may be difficult to stack. In
fact what has been done is that the background is recessed more than usual
for a typical coin, allowing the relief to be higher without creating
problems with high points of wear or for stacking the coins in quantities.

While this may not be a two-headed coin, the same queen's portrait appearing
twice on the obverse of the same coin is something of an anomaly. This puts
the coin in a class with such unusual coins as the U.S. Lincoln cent on
which Lincoln is portrayed on both sides (His statue can be seen within the
Lincoln Memorial on the reverse.), the 1990 Eisenhower dollar commemorative
on which the general is seen simultaneously on the obverse at two stages of
his life and the Series 1976 U.S. $2 Federal Reserve bank note on which a
vignette of Thomas Jefferson appears on the front and Jefferson once again
appears within the reverse vignette showing the signing of the Declaration
of Independence on the back.

The reason for depicting the queen's portrait twice on the obverse of the
same Guernsey coin was not immediately available. Perhaps it is meant to be
a fail-safe against losing her depiction should there be a Y2K problem.

The Guernsey 1999 5-pound coin is enormous. It has a diameter of about 38.1
millimeters and a reeded edge. Although Guernsey 1-pound bank notes are
rarely seen in circulation, the 5-pound note depicting a vignette of the
queen on the front and Fort Grey and the Hanois Lighthouse on the back is
still generally in use. The queen does not appear twice on the 5-pound bank
note. The States of Guernsey are in an unusual situation almost unique to
states closely associated with the United Kingdom. Guernsey issues its own
legal tender coins and bank notes, yet English bank notes and any major
foreign currency is accepted as legal tender. Guernsey is part of the
Channel Islands, all of which have a similar currency situation.

Richard Giedroyc is a numismatic writer, researcher, auction cataloger and
coin dealer. He has been in the hobby and business most of his life, now
having more than three decades experience in this fascinating hobby field.
During this time Giedroyc has been the owner of Paris Bergman Galleries,
owner of Classical Coin Newsletter, international editor of Coin World and
owner of Giedroyc-Anderson Interesting World Coins. He is currently a
numismatic consultant. He has written more than 2,000 byline numismatic
stories and contributed to several coin catalogs.

--Remark WBCC Focal Point: A picture of the Bi-metallic 5 Pound of Guernsey
can be seen in the WBCC Homepage, at the end of section:

"See" you next Millunnium,
Martin Peeters, Focal Point of the
Worldwide Bi-metallic Collectors Club
The Worldwide Bi-metallic Collectors Club
was established September 14, 1996 and is the very first Worldwide
Collectors Club using the Internet. Goal of the WBCC is exchange
Bi-metallics and exchange knowledge about Bi-metallics
WBCC Organisation:
WBCC Homepage Provider: Rod Sell, Australia, Rod.Sell@hlos.com.au
WBCC DoCu-Centre: Frans Dubois, Netherlands, dubois.f@wxs.nl
WBCC Public Relations: Cliff Anderson, USA, chander@mciworld.com
WBCC Research Centre: Paul Baker, UK, 113076.167@compuserve.com
WBCC Focal Point: Martin Peeters, Netherlands, martinp@westbrabant.net