Worldwide Bi-Metallic Collectors Club

WBCC Newsmail 198, Volume 5, May 27, 2000
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,

Much news to report this week about Bi-metallics.
I hope you enjoy reading it !!

1. Bi-metallic Swiss 5 Franken 2000...by Martin Peeters, Netherlands

From Hanspeter Koch of the Swiss Mint I received a message about a the new
Bi-metallic 5 Franken 2000. It commemorates the 150 anniversary
of the Swiss Franc. It is made in Unc (150,000 pieces) and in Proof
(15,000 pieces) quality. The ring is made of Copru-Nickel and the centre of
Nordic Gold (CuAlZnSn). A picture can be seen in the WBCC Homepage:

2. Bi-metallic Algeria 50 dinar 1999....by Frans Dubois, Netherlands

The Bi-metallic series of Algeria is rather scarce to find especialy the
different years of issue. Some of these coins, dated 1997 (and the 100 dinar
1994) are only issued in the proof set. Last week I found a 50 dinars of the
year 1999. This is the first bi-metallic coin of Algeria of that year. If
somebody finds the other coins of that year, please let us know.

3. Bi-metallic Transit Tokens...by Cliff Anderson, USA

There are three Canadian Bi-metallic transit tokens showing the WBCC website
for this week. The first one is designated by the Atwood-Coffee catalog as
PQ 150D. It was issued by Drummondville, Quebec, in 1962, though it is
marked "1957". It is now obsolete. Like several others from Quebec, note how
the inscriptions are in both French and English: "Bon Pour Un Passage" and
"One Fare". The second one, designated at PQ 825B, was issued by Shawinigan
Falls, Quebec, in 1960, as a school token. It is now obsolete. Again, see
how the inscriptions are in both French and English: "C. F. L. Urbain" and
C. F. L. Urban Service". And the third token, PQ 745O, was issued by the
City of Quebec in 1960 as a children's token. It is the same design as the
PQ 745I, except that the metals have been reversed.  It is now obsolete. The
design is the same on both sides.

4. Bi-metallic from Bosnia.........by  Joel Larouche, Canada

This week I wrote to Bosnia Central bank and I ask them if they have
released the Bi-metallic 1and 2 KMHere is the reply :

In answer to your questions, some technical problems have delayed the
release into circulation of the 1 and 2 KM until the first week of July
tentatively. At the same time we plan to introduce a Brilliant uncirculated
set of Millennium coins all minted in 2000 including the three coins in the
fening series, for a total of five coins in a souvenir bubble wrap album. As
for the 5 KM, we plan on doing something before 2002 however nothing
definitive as of yet.

5. Bi-metallic MTT from Friesland, The Netherlands..by Frans Dubois

In a week or two there will be two new Bi-metallic MTT's from the city of
Bolsward in Friesland. This city issued two different Bi-metallics before in
1994. One is a 'proof' token and the other is a circulation token. Further
details are unknown now but as soon as I have more info you can read it in
the WBCC Newsmail.

6. Bi-metallic 3 Dollar MTT from Canada...by Martin Peeters, Netherlands

The following press release I received from serge Pelletier, Canada:

World's Bathtub Racing Capital Strikes High-Tech token
Nanaimo, BC – The Loyal Nanaimo Bathtub Society (LNBS) is pleased to
announce that their 2000 municipal trade token will salute the Tubbers of
the 20th Century by issuing its first circulating Bi-metallic 3-Dollar
token. Issued in June, the token will have currency value, at participating
merchants, until September 30. The LNBS has been issuing such tokens as a
means to raise funds for their community projects since 1969 but this is its
first 3-Dollar token and its first circulating Bi-metallic token. “We taught
it would be appropriate to start a new Millennium with a token that looked a
bit more High-Tech” said Margaret Jonhson, the program coordinator. Produced
by  Eligi Consultants Inc., a company specialized in municipal trade tokens,
the 32-millimetre token has a heart of silver-coloured cupro-nickel (20mm in
diameter) surrounded by a ring of gold-coloured aluminium-bronze and is a
whopping 3 millimetre thick. “It looks absolutely fabulous and is bound to
be very popular with tourist as well as the local population” commented
Serge Pelletier, President of Eligi Consultants Inc. A very limited edition
three-token Collector Set (only 75) will also be available. The set,
presented in a CD like jewel box, will contain three metal varieties:
Bi-metallic, argentan and gold plated.
Those interested in getting some of these tokens should contact the
exclusive distributor: Bonavita Ltd, Box 11447, Station H, Nepean, ON K2H
7V1, Canada (Tel: +1-613-823-3844 / Fax: +1-613-825-3092).
Technical Data
Obverse:  “Bathtub” boat.  Legend:  LOYAL NANAIMO BATHTUB SOCIETY / 2000 /
Reverse: Loyal Nanaimo Bathtub Society logo consisting of “Little People” in
a bathtub boat crowned by the British Columbia flag. Legend: (maple leaf)
Issuing Agency:  Loyal Nanaimo Bathtub Society
Designer:  Serge Pelletier
Mint:  Eligi Consultants Inc.
Diameter:  32mm
Edge:  Plain
Composition / Mintage / Price
Bi-metallic* / 2,075 / $4.00
Nickel-Silver / 75 / $13.00
Gold Plated / 75 / $16.00

* The Bi-metallic piece has a heart of cupro-nickel (silver coloured) and a
ring of aluminium-bronze (gold coloured)
For more information:
Serge Pelletier
Tel: +1-613-542-1669
E-Mail:  info@eligi.ca

7. Bi-metallic inlays from the UK........by Paul Baker, UK

In the British magazine "Skyview" - the magazine sent free to all Sky T.V.
subscribers - there was an advert a few weeks ago about a set of four
bi-metallic (inlay) medallions made for the soccer club Manchester United.
Each is a apparently "crown-sized", 0.999 Silver and 1 Troy Ounce. All
obverses feature designs which are selectively Gold-plated with 24 carat
On the first piece in the series the portrait is gold-plated on the other
three a cup/trophy is gold-plated. Each medallion is apparently "stamped"
with the set number (issue limit is 5000). The theme of the set is
Manchester United Football Club and in particular their manager and the
three big trophies they won last season. The pieces can be bought from
Franklin Mint Ltd. of London (related to the Franklin Mint, U.S.A.). However
the Franklin Mint Ltd. seem only to be the marketers for this and not the
actual makers. A small mention is made in the advert of Liberty Mint (a
private American mint which it seems has recently ceased trading), it would
seem that this is the mint that will have made the pieces. A look on the
website of the rather famous Manchester United Football Club allowed me to
find a few non-inlay pieces with rather similar designs to these four. A
picture of these inlays can be seen in the WBCC Homepage. The set (in a box)
costs 290 Pound and is available at: Franklin Mint Limited, Freepost (Lon
6197), London E14 9BR, England, U.K.

8. Bi-metallic unique project...by Martin Peeters, Netherlands

A message which I received from WBCC member Jose Luis Ramirez Monleon about
an unique project from the British Royal Mint. If you see the website of the
Royal Mint ( http://www.royalmint.com/ , go to: UK and Latest News) you can
choose the design for a new Bi-metallic two pounds coin.

9. New Bi- or Tri-metallic images....by Rod Sell, WBCC Homepage Provider

This weeks new pictures in the WBCC Homepage:

* China 1990 Gold Panda, 1/2oz Gold & 1/5oz Silver
* China 1991 Gold Panda, 1/4oz Gold & 1/8oz Silver
* China 1992 1/10oz Gold Panda. 1/10oz Gold & 1/20oz Silver
* China 1993 1/4oz Gold Panda. 1/4oz Gold & 1/8oz Silver
* China 1994 1/4oz gold panda, 1/4oz Gold & 1/8oz Silver
* China 1994 Gold 1/4oz unicorn, 1/4oz Gold & 1/8oz Silver
* China 1995 Gold Panda:
- 1/2oz Gold & 1/5oz Silver, mintage: 2,000pcs
- 1/4oz Gold & 1/8oz Silver, mintage: 2,000pcs
- 1/10oz Gold & 1/28oz Silver, mintage: 2,000pcs
* China 1995 gold unicorn. 1/4oz Gold & 1/8oz Silver
* China 1996 1oz Silver
* China 1997 1oz Silver Panda.
* China 1998 1oz Silver Panda.
* China 1999 1oz silver panda.
* Hong Kong 1994 Gold 10 Dollars.
* N.Z. 1997 1oz Silver
* Franklin Mint  Manchester United Soccer Club inlay medals
* Swiss, 1999 Vevey 5 Francs
* Swiss, 1999 Precious Metal 5 Francs Essai
* Swiss, 2000 Basler 5 Francs
* Swiss, 2000 150th Anniversary of the Franc Monetary system.
* Canada  Shawinigan Falls, Quebec, in 1960, as a school token PQ825B
* Canada Transit Token Drummondville, Quebec, in 1962
* Canada, City of Quebec, 1960 children's token PQ745O

10. The World Of Bi-metallic Catalog...by Martin Peeters, WBCC Focal Point

The 33th issue of The World Of Bi-metallics catalog (issue date June 1st.)
is ready for distribution. TWOB covers all known ringed Bi- or Tri-metallics
from all over the world. It will be send to WBCC members  by snail mail or
send as an attached Excel file.

11. Coin World article...........by Martin Peeters, Netherlands

Copyright story reprinted by permission of Amos Press Inc. from the May 22,
2000 issue of Coin World, Sidney, OH.

Two metals better than one
Bimetallic coins showcase innovation, beauty
By Victoria Stone Moledor
Coin World Staff
The depth and breath of the world's offerings Bi-metallic coins increases
every year.
Of course, just about every coin struck today is technivally Bi-metallic,
since they are usualkly struck from alloys of two or more metals and
soimetimes layers of three alloys at once. Bi-metallic collectors don't
consider such coins for their collections, they focus specifically on ringed
Bi-metallic coins, which feature two visible fifferent metals - one in the
center and one in the form of a ring that circles the core
Ancient, Medieval
Bi-metallic currency was likely first conceived in 27 B.C. Bi-metallic
cowrie shell-shaped castings with one gilded side have been found in
Egyptian burial sites dating from 2700 to 2200 B.C. and China from the 12th
to third centuries B.C. Researchers believe these early forms of money were
intended for the dead to use to pay their way into afterlife; the shells are
not known to have served as circulating currency.
Most researchers believe the first true ringed Bi-metallic items were a
serie of Roman medallions that features various second century emperors such
as Trajan 9A.D. 98-117), Hadrian (A.D. 117-138) and Commodus 9A.D. 180-193).
Most look like a sestertius coins and features a thin ring of copper about 8
to 10 millimeters thick around a silver core. The medals, which commemorated
various events, were used as centerpieces in military standards, as many
today bare the marks of mounting or still have the standard attached. More
ringed Bi-metallic coins were produced during medieval times in China,
Africa and the Middle East.
Modern ringed Bi-metallic coins are made of an outer ring of one metal the a
center or "heart"of another distinctly different colored metal. In 1982,
Italy introduced the first modern ringed Bi-metallic coin intended for
general circulation - the 500-Lira coin. The individual segments of these
cois were struck separately and the center was later inserted into the ring.
Italy added Braille to its 500 Lira ringed Bi-metallicx coin to asist the
sight-impared. Several other countries have since added this feature to
coins. France later improved on the technology, producing a coin in one
strike where small holes in the outer ring allowed the metal from the
center, when struck, to flow and lock the two pieces of the coin together.
France also introduced the first commemorative ringed Bi-metallic coin
compressed od precious metals - a silver center and gold ring.
In 1992, the French struck a 20-Franc coin compressed of three separate
metals in both a circulating version and noncirculating legal tender Proof
version of the coin meant for collectors. Both are similar in structure to
the circulating 10-franc coin first introduced in 1988.
The circulating 2-franc coin is composed of a yellow color copper-nickel
brass ring, white color aluminum-nickel heart and yellow color copper-nickel
center plug. The 10-franc coin intoduced in 1988 has a copper-nickel outher
ring and aliminum-nickel heart. A Proof collector version of that coin was
issued with gold ring and silver center.
In 1996 Canada released ots $2 Polar Bear coin, a Bi-metallic circulating
coin. The coin is composed of a nickel outer ring and an aluminum bronze
center. The Canadian gorvernment determined it could save more than $250
million over 20 years bacause the coin's 20-year life span would in the long
run dwarf production costs of the $2 note, which offered a life span of only
1 year. The $2 note costs about six cents to manufacture, while the coin
cost about 16 cents each. The $2 coin was immediately accepted by vending
machines and prublic transportation. The $2 note was withdrawn from
circulation to encourage use of the coin. Perhaps one of the most exciting
innovations in circulating Bi-metallic coins will be the introduction of the
Euro - the currency unit of the European Union - in January 2002. The
participating EU countries - Belgium, Germany, Greece, Spain, France,
Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, The Netherlands, Austria, Protugal, Finland and
Sweden - will each issue euro coinage with a common obverse and a reverse
designated by the issuing country. The 1- and 2-euro coins will be struck in
ringed Bi-metallic style.
Many, many countries or localities - from Andorra to Zimbabwe - feature
either a Bi-metallic curculating or commemorative coin. Some commemorative
coins are very attrachtive and may give the collector a choise of a
combination nonprecious metals and precious metals such as gold and
platinum, which would obviously be reflected in the coin's value. Some
feature additional devices such as holograms or inlay.
U.S. Bi-metallics
The first actual record of "coins"struck in the U.S. Mint can be found in
Chief Coiner Henry Voigt's account book on Dec. 17, 1792. The coins were
patterns and Bi-metallic, too; 1792-dated cents made by placing a silver
plug worth three-fourths of a cent into a copper blanc worth one-fourth of a
cent. Voigt believed this tiny coin might be preferable to the cumbersome
large cents composed of pure copper. The Silver Center cent patterns
represent an attempt to produce a small coin with intrinsic value at one
The obverse depicts a female bust with flowing hair and the inscription
around LIBERTY PARENT OF SCIENCE & INDUSTRY and the date 1792. The reverse
has UNITED STATES OF AMERICA around a laurel wreath, ONE CENT in the center
and the fraction 1/100 below.
Onle a handful of genuine specimens excist, with numerous counterfeits
known. The cost making the blanks revealed the project's impractical side.
Voigt's notes state making pieces "mixed by fusion"that is, alloying the
silver plug in with the correct amount of copper without any silver content
by plating a small area of the obverse and reverse; onle chemical analysis
could prove authenticity.
So, small copper cents weighting not more than half a Birmingham copper
proved unsuitable. Congress ordered the Mint strike a large copper cents we
know today.
Simetimes silver plugs were used to increase the weight od an underweight
plancjet. Several 1795 Flowing Hair dollars with silver plugs in the center
are known. In 1997, Kentucky coin dealer Jonathan Kern discouvered a 1795
half dollar with a plug, the first known od tis kind. Many, many privately
issued tokens feature a Bi-metallic composition - especially mass transit
tokens for trains or subways.
The U.S. Mint just began to srell its first modern Bi-metallic coin - the
Library of Congress Bicentennial $10 commemorative coin. The coin features a
platinum core surrounded by a golg ring. It's uncertain how many collectors
will add the coin to their collection given the issue price od $425 for the
Proof and #405 for the Uncirculated version. The Mint did not choose to make
the coin available in less expensive allouys to preserve the Bi-metallic
look. A Library of Congress Bicentennial silver dollar is available for $32
or $27, in Proof and Uncircilated version, respectively.
For more information about Bi-metallic coins and tokens, visit the Web site
of the Worldwide Bi-metallic Collectors Club at
http://www.geocities.com/RodeoDrive/7513/wbcc/wbcc.html. CW

"See" you next weeks,
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@elderwyn.com
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 Developement Centre, Jack Hepler, USA, leslie.j.hepler@saic.com
WBCC Focal Point: Martin Peeters, Netherlands, martinp@westbrabant.net