The Royal Canadian Mint has started accepting pre-orders for the 2013 Year of the Snake Fine Silver $20 Coin. This coin features a different design than the previous Year of the Snake coin releases, which can be found in previous posts here and here. At this time, the new coin can only be ordered by Master’s Club members, with availability to the general public starting on October 30.
The reverse design of the coin features a snake coiling on a tree perch. An inscription above reads “Canada 20 Dollars”. The field to the left of the snake contains the Chinese symbols for the snake and “2013 Fine Silver Argent Pur 9999”. The obverse features the portrait of Queen Elizabeth II designed by Susanna Blunt.
Each coin is struck in .9999 fine silver with a weight of 7.96 grams and diameter of 27 mm. The coins are priced at $31.95 CAD. The total mintage is 128,888 pieces, although only 28,000 are indicated to be available in North America.
The coins feature a three fold combination of finishes. This consists of a matte finish for the background created using laser etching and both brilliant and mirrored surfaces used for the raised design elements.
The combination of finishes sounds similar to the one used for the 25th Anniversary Loonie Silver Dollar. When I received this coin I was much more impressed with the appearance in hand compared to the product pictures.