Worldwide Bi-Metallic Collectors Club
Newsmail #500

WBCC Newsmail 500 Volume 11, March 11, 2006

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

this week assisted by Cliff Anderson


Dear WBCC members and non WBCC members,
Welcome into the World Of Bi-metallics. I hope you find this week's WBCC Newsmail informative and interesting.

1. March 11th a Big Day for the Martin Peeters, WBCC Focal Point
Since September 14th. 1996 and 500 weeks in a row news about Bi- and Tri-metallics. It is never shown in the Internet. With this WBCC Newsmail 500 it is a milestone for the WBCC and it's members. 500 WBCC Newsmails was only possible with help of the WBCC members, and I want to thank you all you make it happen !! A very usufull help was the WBCC webpages. A special thanks goes to Rod Sell in Australia who maintains the WBCC pages !!
 Please notice: The next Big Day this year will be September 14th. The 10th Anniversary of the Worldwide Bi-metallic Collectors Club.
2. A new WBCC Martin Peeters, WBCC Focal Point
Name: Jean-Yves Ecalle (WBCC member #395), France
Age: 49
Profession: head pediatric nurse
Hobby: Circulating Bi- and/or Tri-metallic coins of the world
Goal: Begginning a bi metallic collecting
Against: Mercantile promotions
How did I know about the WBCC: searching on the web

3. WBCC Newsmail 500 (1) Rod Sell, Australia
WBCC Newsmail 500 is indeed a landmark occasion for our Club.
You may not realise that we have an archive of all our WBCC Newsmails at:
That is correct, you can read every WBCC Newsmail from the start. The very first WBCC Newsmail, numbered 0 on the14th September 1996 can be read at:
Our earlier newsmails are only available in text format. From WBCC Newsmail 150 they are listed in html format.
The early WBCC Newsmails make very interesting reading. You can see how the WBCC was formed and the criterior that was proposed. We have kept very true to our early objectives.
Newsmail is a word that I believe was created by Martin Peeters, as I had not heard it used before. It is now part of our language and I believe also used by others.
I now appeal to all our members to assist with future WBCC Newsmails by sending Martin emails relating to Bi- and Tri-metallics. The more information received the better the WBCC Newsmail.
4. WBCC Newsmail 500 (2)...Frans Dubois, Netherlands
Since the start of the WBCC in September 1996 there are a few things that started to grow.
In the first place the number of connections I have all over the world growed very fast. I have got friends all over the world with the same interest, bimetallics.
In the second place, my collection growed from a few coins to a few thousand bimetallic coins and tokens. Common coins and tokens but some real rare.
And all of this was possible because of the third item that growed spectaculair. That is the knowledge and information about bimetallics. And it was  the continuing stream of knowledge of the last 500 Newsmails that made it possible that the The WBCC and the Newsmail is well-known today by a lot of coincollectors and magazines.
I know that Martin does not want to hear his name because his words are always: "The members make the Newsmail" and for a small part that is true, but he was the one who "streamed" it to what the Newsmail is what it is, a permanent stream of information. I realy hope that there will be a lot of new Newsmails in the next years!!! Congratulations with this number 500!!!
5. WBCC Newsmail 500 (3)...Zdravko Bosnjak, Croatia
I want to thanks Bi-metallic team, especialy Martin, Frans and Rod (and other WBCC members) on so hard job they did. Thanks to they I got great coins. Thank you very much again.
6. WBCC Newsmail 500 (4)...Otto Komornik, Irael
Q & A; New Issues; New Members; Missing Shipments; Expectations; Webmaster; Auction Provider and Auctions; DoCu Center; TWOB-s; Public Relation; Research and Development: Image Library; News Mail; New Releases; Links; Money Fairs; Congratulation to all members, shearing, makes it possible as to arrive to 500
7. WBCC Newsmail 500 (5)... by Tiesheng Li, China
Congratulations to the 500th issue WBCC Newsmail and the coming 10th anniversary of the WBCC. Though we only have 3 members of WBCC in mainland China, waiting to meet you this June in Beijing!
8. Bi-metallics by theme (1) Michael Ayrapetov, USA
Especialy for WBCC Newsmail 500 a list of Bi-metallics by theme: Sport by year and County:
28 world Bi-metallic Sport Theme coins of base metals was issued by 15 countries and territories (by year of issue):
a. Andorra, 2 Diners, 1985, Winter Olympic Games in Calgary, Canada, 1988.
b. Andorra, 2 Diners, 1985, 24th Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea, 1988.
c. France, 20 Francs, 1993, Mediterranean Games.
d. France, 20 Francs, 1994, Pierre De Coubertin, Founder of Modern Olympic Games.
e. Portugal, 200 Escudos, 1996, 26th Olympic Games in Atlanta, USA.
f. Australia, 5 Dollars, 1996, Sir Donald Bradman, Cricket Player.
g, h Isle Of Man, 2 Pounds, 1997 and 1998, Racer Cars (2 different images of   Queen).
i. Thailand, 10 Baht, 1998, 13th Asian Games.
j. Great Britain, 2 Pounds, 1999,  Rugby Championship
k. Portugal, 200 Escudos, 2000, 27th Olympic Games in Sidney, Australia.
l. Malaysia, 1 Ringgit, 2000, Thomas Cup, Badminton.
m. Australia, 5 Dollars, 2000, Phar Lap, Racer Horse.
n. Finland, 25 Markkaa, 2001, Ski Championship.
o,p,q, r. Great Britain, 2 Pounds, 2002, 17th Commonwealth Games (4 different Flags).
s. Slovenia, 500 Tolars, 2002, World Soccer Championship.
t. Finland, 5 Euro, 2003, Ice Hockey Championship.
u. Greece, 2 Euro, 2004, 28th Olympic Games in Athens, Greece.
v. Bahrain, 100 Fils, 2004, First Bahrain Grand Prix.
w.  North Korea, 1 Won, 2004, Stadium.
x. Slovenia, 500 Tolars, 2005, Gymnastic Club “Sokol” (Falcon).
y. Finland, 5 Euro, 2005, Athletic Championship.
z, aa, bb Turkey, 5 New Lira, 2005, Universiade Games (2 different coins).
cc. Italy, 2 Euro, 2006, Winter Olympic Games in Turin, Italy.
8. Bi-metallics by theme (2) Joakim Wiklander, Sweden
Niobium is one of the up-and-coming metals of the 21th century used for coining combining several important minting qualities together with the ability to create a range of lustrous colors that give the coins a high aesthetic value. Like silver, niobium is very soft, providing a good striking surface for minting. For applications in which wear is a critical factor, such as tokens for the gaming industry, the metal can be super-hardened using special processes. Niobium is non-magnetic, fairly dense, and has high electrical conductivity when compared to copper-important factors in minting currency. Niobium coins are also nearly impossible to counterfeit, since the rare metal is produced by very few companies in the world (mainly in Brazil and Canada) and requires special production equipment, such as electron beam furnaces.
Niobium is named after Niobe, the Greek Goddess of Tears, daughter of Tantalus (after whom tantalum is named). Niobium was discovered in 1801 by English chemist Charles Hatchett who found niobium in columbite ore that was sent to England in the 1750’s by John Winthrop, the first governor of Connecticut. Hatchett called the element columbium (Cb) but in 1950 the name niobium (Nb) was officially adopted by the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC). The original name columbium is still used occasionally in the US.
Niobium is a shiny, soft, grayish and ductile metal that takes on a bluish tinge when exposed to air at room temperatures for extended periods of time. Niobium’s chemical properties are almost identical to the chemical properties of tantalum. Since they are so similar chemically, it is very difficult to separate them.
Niobium has a number of uses, mostly as an alloying element in stainless steels but also in superalloys for such applications as jet engine components, rocket subassemblies, heat-resisting and combustion equipment. The airframes used in the Gemini space program used this metal and an alloy called C-103 formed some of the critical parts of the Apollo 11 lunar spacecraft. Niobium is also used in the production of superconducting accelerating structures for particle accelerators. Along with titanium and tantalum, niobium can also be electric-ally and heat anodized to a wide array of colors. This makes it very attractive for use in jewelry and body piercings.
Patterns in niobium (then called columbium) were made in 1964 & 1965 by the US Mint and the International Nickel Company to test its suitability as coinage material and to possibly replace the 90% silver used at the time in US coins. The metal was eventually rejected as a possible alternative due to cost considerations, its limited supply, and because production of niobium required equipment and techniques not available to the Mint at that time. Sherritt Mint made trial strikes in 1978 of medals for the XI Commonwealth Games in Edmonton, Canada. Production reportedly ceased after only a few pieces were struck when the dies failed due to the hardness of the metal (in its pure form it’s soft and malleable, but even low contents of impurities makes it brittle and hard). In 1990 coin designer Fred Zinkann made a fantasy pattern in niobium with a mintage of only one piece. Specialty metals refiner ATI Wah Chang made 4 commemorative medals between 1994-2004 to show their ability to work with this metal.
One of the most fascinating things about niobium is its ability to change color. Multi-coloured coins, produced by coating the metal with enamel or dye, have been known to the numismatic circles for quite some time, but for niobium coins another process is used called anodization, or as Austrian Mint explains it; "…with special treatment the surface layers of niobium can be made to change color". This is achieved by making the coin the anode in an electrolyte building up a thin oxide film that is colored by interference effects. The color depends on the oxide thickness which in turn depends on the voltage used. Niobium shares this ability to change color with titanium and tantalum. Anodization has been used by jewelry makers for 20 years and has now found its way into coin design resulting in coins made in a wide spectrum of colors; blue, green, purple, brown and gray.
Four countries has minted legal tender coins in niobium so far. Austria was the first country to in 2003, Latvia followed in 2004 and Mongolia and Sierra Leone both in 2005. The coins minted are all bi-metallic with a centre made of niobium and the outer ring of silver except for the Sierra Leone issue which is struck in gold and niobium. The coins are not regular issues aimed for circulation but commemorative coins mainly made for collectors.

This Austrian commemorative coin from 2003 displays several special features for the first time. It is the first coin to bear a face value of 25 Euro. It is the first time the metal niobium has been used in coinage, and it is the first Austrian coin coloured blue. The new 25 Euro coin is a bi-metal coin with a silver ring and a centre made of niobium. The obverse shows a satellite (a reference to the use of niobium in astronautics) mapping the town of Hall from outer space. The reverse side shows the Guldiner silver coin of 1486. The design is negative and represents a coining die, a reference to Hall’s history as an important centre for minting coins. This is the first time a coin die has been reproduced on a coin, adding to the unique character of this most unusual issue.
Year: 2003
Type: Bi-metallic
Finish: Uncirculated
Diameter: 34.00 mm
Mintage: 50,000
Face Value: 25 €
Mint: Münze Österreich (Austrian Mint)

The 2004 issue celebrates the 150th anniversary of the establishment of the Alpine railway, the Semmering. The coin depicts an historical and a modern locomotive on the obverse and a typical Semmering panorama on the reverse. The green color of the niobium core reflects the land through which the train travels.
Year: 2004
Type: Bi-metallic
Finish: Proof/Special Uncirculated
Diameter: 34.00 mm
Weight: 9.0g silver; 7.15g niobium
Purity: 0.900
Mintage: 50,000
Face Value: 25 €
Mint: Münze Österreich (Austrian Mint)

An issue celebrating the 50th anniversary of television in Austria. The purple niobium field of the obverse depicts the original "test" pattern that was used in the 1950’s for calibration and focusing a television. On the reverse one can see a portion of the globe in the background on the purple niobium core and in the foreground small television antennas. In the outer silver ring, several milestones from the history of television are depicted.
Year: 2005
Type: Bi-metallic
Finish: Brilliant Uncirculated
Diameter: 34.00 mm
Weight: 9.0g silver; 7.15g niobium
Purity: 0.900
Mintage: 65,000
Face Value: 25 €
Mint: Münze Österreich (Austrian Mint)

This coin is issued to commemorate european use of satellite navigation. The obverse of the coin depicts a compass rose and its four main directions, North, South, East and West. Overlaid on the compass rose are the precise latitude and longitude coordinates of the Austrian Mint’s building in Vienna, Austria. The reverse of the coin indicates the orbits that a satellite tracks around the globe. In the silver ring are depictions of various modes of transportation making use of the navigational information provided by these satellites. The coin is struck with a 900 fine outer silver and a golden brown colored niobium core.
Year: 2006
Type: Bi-metallic
Finish: Proof
Diameter: 34.00 mm
Weight: 9.0g silver; 7.15g niobium
Purity: 0.900
Mintage: 65,000
Face Value: 25 €
Mint: Münze Österreich (Austrian Mint)
The Bank of Latvia issued this bimetallic coin in 2004 whose central part is struck in blue niobium and surrounded by an outer silver ring. The reverse of the coin features an astronomical clock. The niobium field of the obverse features a heraldic rose, symbol of love and reverence. Artists: Laimonis Senbergs (graphic design), Janis Strupulis (plaster model).
Year: 2004
Type: Bi-metallic
Finish: Uncirculated
Diameter: 34.00 mm
(niobium core - 23 mm).
Weight: 9.0g silver; 7.15g niobium
Purity: 0.900
Edge: Plain
Face Value: 1 Lats
Mint: Münze Österreich (Austrian Mint)

This issue from the Central Bank of Mongolia commemorates one of the country's most endangered wildlife, the Mongolian Snow Leopard. The oval-shaped coin features a niobium core in the shape of the Snow Leopard. The rich gray-colored niobium can be seen on both the coin's reverse and the coin's obverse. The low mintage of 5,000 coins matches approximately the estimated number of Snow Leopards remaining in the wild.
Year: 2005
Type: Bi-metallic
Finish: Proof
Diameter: 30.00 mm
Weight: 25.00 g
Purity: 0.9250
Mintage: 5,000
Face Value: 500 Togrog

The Bank of Sierra Leone issued this legal tender coin in 2005 to commemorate the life of Pope John Paul II. The bi-metal coin has a gold inner centre bearing a portrait of the late Pope on the reverse while the outer ring of purple niobium is adorned by the Fourteen Stations of the Cross. This is the first coin minted in gold and niobium and also the first where the niobium forms the outer ring and not the centre.
Year: 2005
Type: Bi-metallic
Finish: Proof
Purity: 0.9999
Face Value: 75 Dollar
Mint: Pobjoy Mint

Austrian Mint and Pobjoy Mint were the first to embrace titanium as a metal for coinage and they also became the first mints regarding niobium. As popular as titanium has become among collectors and mints it’s possible that niobium with its fine qualities can become just as popular. In fact several of the niobium issues are now sold out at the mints. Austria remains however the only country to have minted more than one coin in niobium, having minted one every year since 2003. What other issues can we expect in the future? An industrial alloy of niobium and titanium exists already, will we ever see such an alloy in a coin? No one knows, but a safe prediction is that at least the Austrian Mint will continue with their annual issues of commemorative coins struck in niobium, the metal the Austrian Mint call "…the most modern of metals"…
Euro Collections International Inc. (Distributor for the Austrian Mint in USA and Canada)
Münze Österreich (Austrian Mint)
Pobjoy Mint
The Bank of Latvia
ATI Wah Chang
"Just 24 chemical elements" by Jay & Marieli Roe (World Coin News Vol.19, No.5 March 2, 1992)
"United States Patterns and Related Issues" by Andrew W. Pollock III, ©1994 by Bowers and Merena Galleries.© 2006 Joakim Wiklander. Member of the WBCC (Worldwide Bi-metallic Collectors Club).

9. Bi-metallic 10 Zloty 2006 from Jacek Stacel, Poland
The Poland Mint will issue in April a Bi-metallic 10 Zloty commemorate the World Football Championship in Germany 2006
Official message in:
10. Bi-metallic 2 Zloty from Jacek Stacel, Poland
There is a new Bi-metallic 2 zloty of Polend circulating dated 2006
11. Bi-metallic medal from Jacek Stacel, Poland
There is a scan of a Bi-metallic 500 Lei 1999 from Romania
12. Bi-metallic medal about a Dutch Martin Peeters, Netherlands
In The Netherlands we have many soccer teams. One of them is "Willem II" from the Dutch city Tilburg (excists since 1896 !!). Since March 6, they have available a Bi-metallic "Mister Willem II" for sale, The John Feskens coin and is struck at The Royal Dutch Mint in Utrecht. John Feskens played 483 games for Willem II. The medal costs 7 Euro at the Willem II fanshop and it is good course: "Stichting KiKa" (Children Cancerfree). More about the soccerteam "Willem II" look at: , sorry only in Dutch Language.
13. Bi-metallic 50 Qapik 2006 from Fabio Iorio, Italy
Refering to WBCC Newsmail 499 item 4 about the 50 Qapik 2006 from Azerbaijan...they are offered in Ebay is about Fantasy Euros.
14. The WBCC Bi-metallic Quiz Game Jack Hepler, USA
There are at least 18 countries that have issued a Bi-metallic coin valued at 500.  Dram, Schillings, Fils, Riels, Pesos, Yuan, Sucres, Rial, Lire, Lei, Pesetas, Leones, Tolar and Francs are the denominations used for these coins. Which country issued a Bi-metallic coin valued at 500 Francs?
a. Belgium
b. Cambodia
c. France
d. West African States
Please send your answer to:
Note: See this coin and many others by visiting the WBCC website;
Answer to Bi-metallic Quiz Game question #499.
The twentieth (XX) World Youth Day was celebrated in 2005 and commemorated on the Liberian Five Dollar Bi-metallic coin of that year. The coin features the Liberian coat of arms with a ship, palm tree and bird with a scroll in its beak. The other side of the coin shows a picture of the Pope and a cathedral. In which city was this celebration held?
a. Rome, Italy
b. Cologne, Germany
c. Vatican City.
d. Warsaw, Poland.
The answer to Question #499 is "b"; Cologne, Germany.
Note: The original question mistakenly identified the Pope as John Paul II. It was actually Pope Benedict XVI shown on the coin.

15. WBCC Quiz Game Jack Hepler, USA
A Bi-metallic prize will be awarded to a member who correctly answers the WBCC Quiz Game this week. If more than one member gets the correct answer, a random drawing will be conducted to select a winner. There were nine players in game #498 and the winner was Meir Sapir WBCC member #296.
16. New Bi- or Tri-metallic Rod Sell, WBCC Webmaster
The new Bi- and Tri-metallic images shown at:
* Bi-metallics from Mauquoy Token Co. Belgium.
* Romania 500 Lei 1999
* Poland 2006 10 Zloty
17. WBCC Auction 77 is open Rod Sell, WBCC Auction Provider
WBCC Auction 77 is now opened. The 118 very interesting lots can be seen at:
Please email your bids to me at I will not accept NEW bids in the last hour of the auction, so please make sure you bid earlier. I will accept rebids if have have been out bid.
18.Special offer in the Auction Martin Peeters, Netherlands
Especially for celebrating WBCC Newsmail 500 I did put in the Auction 77, 5 Vatican City Euro UNC sets issued till now. The reserve per set is 26$. (Because of this offer the WBCC membership is closed till March 19th. 2006) Please notice in the WBCC Auction 77 are more interesting offers of Bi-metallics from WBCC member. Lot 118 also includes a Vatican Set.
19. My Bi-metallic Wolfgang Schuster, Austria
The Austrian 2 Euro is the first denomination of 2006, which has been released to circulation recently. I hold some sspecimens, if someone is interested, please write to me at:
20. My Bi-metallic Kazim Aghapour, Iran
I have Azerbaijan new Bi-metallic 50 Qepik "kopek" for sell. if you need  this coin in 10 - 25 - 50 - 100 set I can offer you in good prices.
* 1-5 set = 2 Euro each + 2 $ postal service
* 5-10 set = 1. 5 Euro + 5 $ postal service
* 10-25 set = 1 Euro + 5 Euro for registred letter service.
E-mail me at:

"See you" next week,
Martin Peeters, Focal Point of the Worldwide Bi-metallic Collectors

The Worldwide Bi-metallic Collectors Club (WBCC) 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 Webmaster & Auction Provider, Rod Sell, Australia.
WBCC DoCu-Centre: Frans Dubois, Netherlands.
WBCC Public Relations: Cliff Anderson,USA.
WBCC Research Centre: Paul Baker, UK.
WBCC Developement Centre: Jack Hepler, USA.
WBCC ANA Focal Point: Ray Lockwood, USA.
WBCC Focal Point: Martin Peeters, Netherlands
WBCC Website
Bi-metallic Forum Page
The WBCC was sponsored at the World Money Fair 2006, , by:
Schuler Presses, Germany, and
The Portuguese Mint (INCM),


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