Dome Shaped 2012 Crux Southern Sky $5 Silver Proof Coin

The Royal Australian Mint has released the 2012 Crux Southern Sky $5 Silver Proof Coin. This new release is dome shaped, representing a first for the RAM.

The Crux constellation, also known as the “Southern Cross,” is one of the smallest of the 88 modern constellations, but one of the most distinctive. It is easily visible in the southern hemisphere night sky at practically any time of year and made up of five stars. The four main stars form a cross, from which it takes its name.

The reverse design of the coin is color printed on a concave surface, which should provide a dramatic display of the constellation framed within a compass border. The obverse is convex and includes a portrait of Queen Elizabeth II.

Each coin is struck in 99.9% silver with a weight of 1 oz and diameter of 39.62 mm. The coins are packaged in a presentation tin with an insert that allows the coin to be displayed upright.

The product page can be found here. The price for international orders is AUD$100.00.

While this is a first for the Royal Australian Mint, the format of a dome shaped coin has been used before. The Monnaie de Paris issued the 2009 International Year of Astronomy Coin, which I believe won a Coin of the Year Award.

The United States Mint may issue a dome shaped commemorative coins for the baseball hall of fame. A bill passed by both the Senate and House of Representatives calls for the reverse of the silver dollar and $5 gold coins to be convex to closely resemble a baseball and for the obverse to be concave for dramatic display of the design. This format is not required, but recommended as sense of the Congress and “to the extent possible without significantly adding to the purchase price of the coins.”

Facebook Twitter Email


  1. says

    Glad to see a post on this one, Michael. I’m probably going to pick one of these up from my friend who bought some from the RS Mint yesterday after I showed him the coin. They’re lovely pieces.

    Frankie in the last thread recommended RS Mint over a direct buy from the Royal Australian Mint, and I must second him. You get free shipping with purchases over $200.

    I also had forgotten the Baseball HoF coin was going to be dome shaped. Too bad we have to wait until 2014. I am definitely looking forward to that one.

  2. Shutter says

    these 2 coins look so similar. any patent issue?

    There would only be a patent issue if Monnaie de Paris applied for one, was granted a patent, and no one else had ever created anything remotely similar (prior art) before. After all that there would be a small matter of trying to enforce it in a foreign country. The French mint doesn’t have unlimited funds like the greedy bastards in Cupertino and the potential payoff may be pretty small. O, and RAS, as part of a sovereign government, may be immune to any such suits anyhow.

  3. Dan says

    ,Its hard to see how much the coin is actually cuped to form the dome but I cant wait to see it. It will be interesting to see how the mint handles their chance with the Baseball Hall of Fame coin in 14. Hopefully they will not drop the ball, no pun intended , but produce a great design with the dome. I think that it might be quite a hit and not an error.

  4. Dan says

    Thanks Capt

    I had seen these pictures but I have a hard time appreciating or seeing the true depth of the coin. The pictures of the two coins above that Michael has displayed, make the Australian coin look even better than the French coin. Could even be that the coin just looks better with the silver and deep blue as opposed to the other finish.

    I think this ” dome ” is great for a sky backdrop, but I wonder if the US Mint could try to push it a bit further for the curvature of the baseball without destroying the other side of the coin..

  5. Anon says

    dumb question; whats the difference between the royal asutralian mint and the perth mint?

  6. Michael Zielinski says

    Here is the answer from an interview with the CEO of the Royal Australian Mint (

    “As I mentioned previously the Perth Mint existed as one of the branches of the Royal Mint in the UK. It was built to refine the gold that was mined in Western Australia and mint sovereigns. Once decimal coinage was introduced and the Royal Australian Mint became sole supplier of Australia’s circulating coinage, the Perth Mint was sold to the Western Australian Government and became the Gold Corporation, dealing in precious metal investment and related collectibles. Whilst it can be a little confusing to the general public, each Mint has its own characteristics and branding and to those valued collectors, they can easily tell the difference between the two Mints’ products.”

  7. says

    For what it is worth, I just received the tax and customs paperwork on my order which usually means that the order is in transit. With a little luck I may have it before monday. I should have mentioned it earlier, but if you were looking at this coin, take a look at the Kangaroo at sunset coin. It is a little smaller this year but it still has that sharp, clean and clear strike. Everybody have a great weekend..

  8. VABEACHBUM says

    @ Dan – I’ll also be giving this unique Crux Coin a serious look. I saw the advanced listing on the RAM website. Based on the newer, detailed pics, it should have some great eye appeal.

    I took delivery of my 2012 Sunset coins earlier this week. They arrived 6-7 calendar days after the RAM issued the tax docs. I’m hopeful that they still are planning to issue the 1 oz silver Sunset coins like they have from 2009 to 2011. Definitely will be a shame if they don’t. This is the third year for the 6 gram silver version; ’10, ’11, and ’12.

  9. Dan says


    I received the kangaroo at sunset coins the third week in July and they were stunning. If you are intrested in this design, Michael had pointed out the Kangaroo in the outback which is very similar, alomost a reverse of the sunset coins. I would have missed it since the RAM is not selling any of them direct. Below is Michaels comment, I hope he does not mind my copying it. It was from the comment secrtion of his Perth Mint article.

    Michael Zielinski says:
    August 1, 2012 at 4:23 pm
    Re: the Kangaroo in Outback coin, I found the following:

    According to the page, the RAM won’t have any for direct sale. I have not seen any mention of the product from the Mint, so can’t confirm this for sure. Just wanted to pass along now for anyone interested

  10. VABEACHBUM says

    @ Dan – Thanks for the info. I had previously seen that Outback Coin listed at Downies for approx $110 US.–1-Outback-Kangaroo-F15-Privy-1oz-Silver-Proof/3032/productview.aspx

    Looks like Euro Collections is a subsidiary of Downies, so their availability makes sense. Definitely an intriguing design; very similar to the Sunset coins as well as this year’s HR Kangaroo. I’ve been watching for it on the Bay and other sources, but will probably grab one from Downies real soon.

    Enjoy your Sunset coins. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend you add the previous 1 oz and 1/5 oz issues to your collection.

  11. Louis says

    Great minds think alike! I am currently weighing whether to get the exact same two coins! The dome coin and the outback Kangaroo.

    One thing to keep in mind about the French coin is it is an expensive piece. It is gold and low mintage and is hard to find. I think they run around $1K or more.

  12. Hidalgo says

    Does anyone know what the Perth Mint and the Royal Canadian Mint will offer for August 2012?

  13. VABEACHBUM says

    @ Hildalgo – The Perth Mint has a “Next Release” link on their main page; directly above the scrolling product links. As a matter of fact, their new products will be come available on Monday Aug 6th, at 12:01 EDT and will include the next Dragons of Legend, St George, and the next Opal coin. Both should sell relatively quickly. Sadly, I have not looked at the RCM site in quite some time.

    Other items of note: I think we can expect a high relief Koala in the very near future; September, I think. Additionally, and over the next 2-3 weeks, the Perth Mint might be offering the Philly ANA (white) and the Sydney ANDA (blue) Dragon Coins as they become available at their respective shows. Realistically, they are re-packaged, colorized Lunar Dragon Coins that already are available in other sets, but they should see some increased interest as individual releases.

  14. VABEACHBUM says

    To clarify, the Perth Mint items become available at 12:01 PM EDT on Monday the 6th. We’re currently 12 hours behind the Perth Mint time zone, where the sales will begin at 12:01 AM on Tuesday the 7th.

  15. Hidalgo says

    Before you buy direct from the Perth Mint, you may want to check out some of the secondary market dealers — which offer slightly better prices and lower shipping rates that the Perth Mint.

    I believe these dealers offer lower prices because they deduct the value added tax normally charged to residents of Australia. Same is true with Gateway and Canadian coins — the prices are lower than ordering direct from the Royal Canadian Mint.

  16. Hidalgo says

    @G – usually the first coin in a series has the greatest appreciation. Personally, I think that the appreciation of the next opal coin will be less than the first one.

  17. VABEACHBUM says

    Hidalgo – I agree, to an extent. Often times, the use of an alternate source will depend upon the primary source, total mintage, market demand, secondary pricing, etc. As we have seen – and been victims of – previously, some of those high demand items will sell out during the initial offering, leaving collectors and secondary sources alike to suffer the fates.

    Speaking of alternate sources, earlier today I pulled the trigger on the Outback Kangaroo and the subject Crux Coin. I ended up going through Eurocollections, the Downies subsidiary. Similar pricing w/ only $10 shipping. In researching the EC website, it looks like they have facilities in and directs North American shipments from SoCal.

  18. says

    I’ll probably buy the Dol St. George and the opal coin tomorrow. I missed out on the first opal, and I’d like to see what one looks like in hand. Will the opal have a “one per household” limit?

  19. Dan says


    Do you know how many coins are supposed to be in the map shaped series or is it going to continue to people just lose interest?

  20. says

    I’ll probably be picking up St. George today. Due to a relative paucity of cash, though, I think I’ll probably have to skip the emu unfortunately.

    I don’t know if anyone’s noticed, but free shipping from Perth has been quietly increased to $400 AUD now.

  21. Louis says

    FYI- RSM has the coin in stock again for delivery later this month. Best price you can find and lowest shipping.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *