Royal Australian Mint keeping coins relevant
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Royal Australian Mint keeping coins relevant

Some of Australia's early convicts may well have found themselves shipped across the globe for stealing coins, now they have a special line of coins dedicated to them.

The Royal Australian Mint kicked off its national Rascals and Ratbags Roadshow Reveal on a dreary Saturday in the capital.

Nhan Nguyen from Sydney with legends and events co-ordinator, Claire Wiscombe, using the mobile press at the Ratbags and Rascals Roadshow Reveal at the Royal Australian Mint.

Nhan Nguyen from Sydney with legends and events co-ordinator, Claire Wiscombe, using the mobile press at the Ratbags and Rascals Roadshow Reveal at the Royal Australian Mint.Credit:Elesa Kurtz

The Mint's roadshow is in its third year but for the first time the journey began in Canberra to accommodate a local audience that had previously missed out.

The Rascals and Ratbags theme celebrates 150 years since the last convict ship arrived in Australia and acknowledges the place of convicts in the country's history.

On the roadshow Mint staff travel around Australia with a portable press that stamps a special suite of uncirculated coins only available at the event.

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Royal Australian Mint sales manager Andrew McCallum said it was important for the Mint to have a presence

in smaller regional centres along with the major cities, particularly in an age where eftpos and card payments are continuously growing.

"What we try to do with the roadshow is keep coins relevant," Mr McCallum said.

"We want to keep coins in front of people and they appreciate having something tangible they can hold onto."

The roadshow presents an exciting prospect for coin collectors all over the country that can get their hands on one of the uncirculated coins and also participate in the coin swap where they can get freshly minted and commemorative coins.

A Counter stamped coin with unique coloured coins at the Ratbags and Rascals Roadshow Reveal at the Royal Australian Mint.

A Counter stamped coin with unique coloured coins at the Ratbags and Rascals Roadshow Reveal at the Royal Australian Mint.Credit:Elesa Kurtz

Locals Kyre Chartorisky and Steve McLaren have spent a lifetime collecting coins and appreciate any opportunity to get their hands on additions to their collections.

Being introduced to coins at a young age by his grandfather, Mr Chartorisky has a particular interest in coins that have been minted incorrectly.

He estimates he has sifted through about $1.8 million in one dollar coins searching for potentially valuable ones, some he says can sell for thousands of dollars.

Mr Chartorisky said he particularly enjoys hunting for rare or unique coins where Mr McLaren likes to have "one of everything" in his collection. Both men said they enjoy getting to know other collectors and the community that exists within coin collecting.

The roadshow continues throughout the year visiting Victoria, Tasmania, New South Wales, Queensland and Western Australia.