Titanium. Multiple coins from Pobjoy and MCI indicate popularity for the tough and light metal rising

As tough as high grade steel but a fraction of the weight, titanium is a metal with a simply phenomenal range of industrial uses that has only grown wider as production technology has made it cheaper to extract. Its use in numismatics is less widespread and for the same reasons that it is so sought after elsewhere. It’s strength means it’s very difficult to strike cleanly as it’s generally tougher than the metal used to make the coin dies, and it doesn’t carry a depth of shine like gold and silver. Basically, it’s a novelty item in the coin world.

That hasn’t stopped a couple of producers putting out some coins. The British Pobjoy Mint have issued scores of them over the last two decades, usually with an imparted colour, but German company MCI-Mint are relatively new to the use of the metal. Despite the drawbacks of production difficulties and a less impressive finish, titanium has maintained a regular presence on the market and actually seems to be picking up a little steam as far as release numbers go.

Pobjoy’s first three coins of 2018 can be seen further down, but MCI have surprised with a huge 120mm half-kilo titanium coin – a format that we haven’t seen before. It isn’t something we’ll cover regularly, but despite its lack of precious metal status we will feature the more unusual releases moving forward. Very much a niche item, especially given they’re not particularly cheap, they do occupy the same space and deserve recognition. Let us know what you think of them in the comments.

JULES VERNE 500g

Our first issue from MCI-Mint is an exceptionally rare example of a coin. There aren’t a huge number of titanium coins on the market at all, but ones that are 120mm in diameter, weigh half a kilo and have colour on them are as rare as a competent politician. In fact, this one is unique, so it’s fortunate that MCI have done a good job with the design.

Depicting the much loved author Jules Verne, it also carries an image of an airship, something that featured greatly in the work that made him famous, Around the World in Eighty Days. The relatively dull finish that is typical of titanium coins seems to work well here in helping to impart an aged look that suits the subject matter.

This one is presented in an acrylic frame and is one of the biggest coins we’ve seen so displayed. A half kilo titanium coin is quite an achievement given how much harder this metal is to work with than the more traditional silver and gold. How much value you place on the unusual format will determine if you think almost €400 is a fair price for what is not a precious metal at the end of the day.

TITANIUM NATURE SERIES

Apart from being struck in titanium, these are fairly standard coins. An image of an animal picked out in colour is a common theme in modern numismatics, but the 60mm diameter is impressive for something that weighs around an ounce – all courtesy of the lower density of this amazing element. Again however, at €69.00 in price and with CIT’s proprietary SmartMinting technology making similar diameters available in silver coins of similar weight,  the value here is dependent on how much you want a titanium coin. These do come with a box and a certificate of authenticity.

SPECIFICATION
COIN JULES VERNE KANGAROO PANDA
DENOMINATION 1,000 Francs CFA 100 Francs CFA 100 Francs CFA
COMPOSITION Titanium Titanium Titanium
WEIGHT 500.0 grams 30.0 grams 30.0 grams
DIAMETER 120.00 mm 60.00 mm 60.00 mm
FINISH Brilliant uncirculated Brilliant uncirculated Brilliant uncirculated
MODIFICATIONS Colour Colour Colour
MINTAGE 1,000 1,999 1,999
BOX / COA Yes / Yes Yes / Yes Yes / Yes
MCI MINT

POBJOY MARINE SERIES

The effective originators of the modern titanium coin, Pobjoy have been producing colouredissues for years now, with their first titanium coin (for Gibraltar) appearing way back in 1999 and a coloured one a year later. Pobjoy’s coins are close to standard crown size at 36.1 mm, but titaniums low density means that only ten grams of metal are required to do so.

Without trying to sound like a broken record, we do need to mention value again. These go for almost £40 plus taxes and that’s a price well into comparable silver territory, so we’re expecting these to have an appeal more to those that collect titanium coins specifically, rather than to the notoriously price concious silver coin collector. The sheer number of these issued by Pobjoy, a number that’s increasing in speed, combined with the length of time they’ve been issuing them does suggest that the market is a relatively healthy one regardless.

MINTS DESCRIPTION: Manta Rays are incredibly majestic creatures of the blue and as a tribute to their immense size yet graceful nature Pobjoy Mint is proud to release this awesome coin in both Titanium and Cupro Nickel. The design shows a Manta Ray skimming above the coral covered ocean floor followed by a group of Remoras. The denomination shown is £2.

he reverse of this new Titanium coin features the much loved Clownfish; made popular by the Disney film “Finding Nemo” this little fish has a big character both in the film and on the reef! We have tried to capture this personality by producing this coin in orange Titanium in order to match the beautiful colour of the fish. The design shows the Clownfish surrounded by its host Anemone.

The Coconut Crab is the world’s largest Land Arthropod and an incredibly impressive looking crab. These Crabs are widely found in the British Indian Ocean Territory so we found it more than appropriate to issue this coin on their behalf. The design shows two large coconut crabs, one on the floor feasting on the flesh of a coconut and the other climbing a coconut palm. The denomination shown is £2, available in Titanium and Unc. Cupro Nickel.

The obverse features the Pobjoy exclusive effigy design of HM Queen Elizabeth II in exceptional detail. As Titanium reacts differently with every strike each of the 7,500 Titanium coins are technically different and vary slightly in colour. There is also a lined effect that is present on the coins which is unique to this metal.

SPECIFICATION
DENOMINATION $5 BVI or £2 UKP
COMPOSITION 0.990 Titanium
WEIGHT 10.00 grams
DIAMETER 36.10 mm
FINISH Brilliant uncirculated
MODIFICATIONS None
MINTAGE 7,500 per design
BOX / COA Yes / Yes
POBJOY MINT