Perth Mint Base Metal Coins

In addition to gold and silver collector coins which usually capture the most attention, the Perth Mint also periodically releases series of base metal coins. Since I have not covered these in the past, I wanted to take a post to highlight two of the most recently released collections.

The 2012 Young Collectors Animal Athletes series will contain a total of six different coins. The first three coins featuring the Kangaroo, Monarch Butterfly, and Cheetah have already been released. According to the upcoming products page, the fourth release featuring the Sailfish will go on sale August 7. The final two releases will feature the Rhinoceros Beetle and Rocket Frog.

The theme of the series is to showcase animals that have amazing abilities, which may resemble sports that human athletes compete in. For example, kangaroos often brawl with one another similar to boxing, the Monarch Butterfly can fly over 425 kilometers per day, and the Cheetah can run at speeds of up to 113 kilometers per hour.

Each $1 coin is struck in aluminum bronze composition with a weight of 13.80 grams and diameter of 30.60 mm. Either the animal or the background is colored. Each coin comes in an illustrated display card with the first issue also available within a display album to house all six issues of the series. The mintage for each release is 7,500 pieces.

The product pages for the available coins can be found here.

The following video provides a glimpse of the future releases.

A new series of base metal coins released last month is the 2012 Celebrate Australia $1 Coin Collection. The five coins of the series portray Australian landscapes and marine environments inscribed in the World Heritage List.

Specifically, the coins feature:

  • Uluṟu-Kata Tjuṯa National Park’s skyline and the native Perentie Lizard
  • Lord Howe Island Group’s landscape and the Sooty Tern
  • Fraser Island’s shoreline and the Australian Dingo
  • Kakadu National Park’s primordial scenery and the Black Necked Stork
  • Willandra Lakes Region’s rugged landscape and the Wedge-Tailed Eagle

Each $1 coin is struck in aluminum bronze with an unlimited mintage. Packaging consists of an illustrated presentation card for individual coins or a presentation album with the purchase of a complete set.

All five coins were released on the same date and can be found on the Perth Mint’s website here.

My personal favorite Perth Mint base metal coin was the aluminum bronze Year of the Dragon coin included within a Stamp and Coin Cover released earlier this year. The coin featured the same design as the silver version of the coin and was mounted within an illustrated envelope containing official Australia Post 60c and $1.80 stamps.

I believe this product was the only format within which the aluminum bronze Year of the Dragon Coin was released. A total mintage was not specified, but the product is now listed as unavailable.

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  1. Schalk says

    Michael, I do like the Animal Athlete series and the kids really like them too. The duelling Kangaroo coin is certainly complimentary to it’s silver counterpart. However, the Cheetah is not an Australian animal and is only found in the wild in Africa.

  2. Michael Zielinski says

    You are of course correct. I changed one sentence from “Australian animals” to just “animals”.

  3. says


    Glad to see you giving attention to the coin & cover bronze dragon. I thought it was one of the nicer dragon products, and doesn’t get enough coverage. If I had a little more money I think I’d pick up that five coin set as well, I’ve been eying it on and off for a few days now.


    It’s still not available via New York Mint from what I can tell. Some people have suggested that one needs to call them to get a coin; however, I haven’t heard of anyone having actually called them to find out. I’m not sure what they’re doing with their stock, exactly. The coins should be graded by now. Perhaps they’re just trying to offload them onto other dealers.

    This is why I just bought via eBay. Given the huge supply restriction it’s possible the five ounce proof could end up being highly sought after. As of this posting it has STILL not sold out on Perth, either. I suspect there aren’t more than 1K-2K currently in collector hands at the moment.

  4. Shutter says

    I really like Animal Athletes series.

    It looks like CaptainOverkill will get his wish. HR Koala is coming in September. Better start saving your pennies. Unless it’s all going to that boiler room in Minneapolis.

  5. Samuel says

    i will give up the 5oz dragon. these days i have increasing interest in the 5oz panda.

  6. Louis says

    NY Mint is running ads in coin magazines for the 5 oz proof. It says the coins are graded and first strikes and says one has to call to order. It would be interesting to know the price.

  7. Frankie says

    I know it’s not the right forum, but there is one upcoming release worth considering for collectors:
    2012 Crux Southern Sky (
    Better pictures can be found here:
    It’s probably pushing the boundaries of what coins are for (similar to the map-shaped coin series from the Perth Mint), but it’s a very nice coin indeed!

  8. says


    Thanks for the heads-up on the koala! I’ve been largely away for the past week and hadn’t heard the good news. I just had a feeling a silver HR koala was probably in the works given the relatively enthusiastic response by fans to the dragon and kookaburra earlier in the year. Looking forward to buying this one.


    That Southern Sky coin is amazing! I don’t really have the money for it, but on the other hand, I’d love to own that piece.

  9. psychdr says

    Michael, it appears that the Sydney Cove High Relief and plate set @ the Perth Mint has been discontinued. Last I looked their were several hundred of these left. Can you verify this and get the final numbers if possible.

  10. Dan says

    Frankie and Capt.

    I ordered 2 of the Southern Crux coins last night. I have been watching and waiting for its release since it was first scheduled. The Australian mint has in the past shipped very quickly and I cant wait to have them in hand. I had ordered the kangaroo at sunset coins July first and had them in a week, and while a little disappointed in their size as compared to last years, they are still sharp and clean. I will let you guys know how the Southern Crux coins are when in hand.

  11. says


    One of my friends ordered a couple of these from the Royal Scandinavian Mint. Once he has them in hand, I might buy one assuming it looks as good as it does on the internet. This will be my first Royal Australian Mint coin.


    Good find. I am grateful I purchased mine when I did. It just arrived two weeks ago!

    I wonder why they suspended sales. I checked and their older coins, such as the 2010 Year of the Tiger gemstone is still available, as is the Marathon coin and the gilded rabbit from last year.

  12. Dan says


    They charge 35 dollars for shipping, but since I ordered multiples it averages lower per item. They ship Fed Ex overnight or 2 day so to me it is worth it. On top of that if there is a problem I can deal directly with them ( only had a single problem and they handle it very quickly with no grief). Last but not least, I know that what I am getting has not been cherry picked in any way.

  13. Frankie says

    Even though I haven’t had any experience with they do offer free shipping above a certain order value ($200 I think). I just added two of the Crux coins ($108 each) to my cart and shipping was free (one coin would cost $6.50 shipping). That’s cheaper than ordering from the RAM direct, bearing in mind the $35 shipping charge, the fact that AUD1 = US$1.05 and that most credit card companies charge between 2-3% foreign transaction fee.
    But I haven’t been able to find a valid coupon code for… 🙂

    One other coin worth mentioning is the 2012 Greenland Polar Bear (mintage of 950):
    A tad pricey considering it’s a recycled design from previous years (e.g., but not unpopular (Talisman sold 7 of these on Jul31 on fleabay).

    Last but not least, there will be another “Kangaroo in Outback” with privy mark coin coming late August. I’ve only seen it at a German dealer so far:
    Nice design…

  14. Samuel says

    Dan, thx for the info. $35 plus 3% CC fee is no good. probably will order from US local dealer.

  15. Dan says


    Glad to hear you jumped on the Southern Crux also. Thanks for the info on the Kangaroo in Outback, did not know about it. Is it Perth or Royal Australian Mint? The coin looks nice and clean just like the Kangaroo sunset coins.

    I am fortunate, I do not pay any additional transaction costs on my CC, so it saves me a little and I usally am buying more than one and try to coordinate with other purchases whenever I can.

    Hey Capt
    Glad to see you have an interest in Royal Australian Mint coins. I have added a few over the years and have been impressed with a few of the designs and their quality. They should be putting out their calendar for 2013 soon. Hope you enjoy the Crux

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