Last updated on February 12th, 2021 at 05:03 am
Last Updated on February 12, 2021 Posted by Colonial Acres Coins
If you’re new to coin collecting, the different terminology used can be very confusing. You know that silver bullion Canada and proofs both refer to coins. They may even have the exact same designs. What is the difference between the two, and why does it matter? The main differences between bullion and proof coins are the purposes for which each is struck and the process used to produce each. Whether you should obtain bullion or proof coins depends upon your goal in collecting.
Bullion coins are stamped with special designs, just as proof coins are. This may make them objects of interest for collectors. However, bullion is not produced specifically as a collector’s item, as proof coins are. Bullion is intended to be an investment, an alternative to using ingots or bars to hold precious metal. For this reason, bullion coins are only struck in precious metals, such as silver, gold, and platinum.
Because the design of a bullion coin is secondary to the intrinsic value of the precious metal from which is it made, much less care is taken in producing bullion than proof coins. Only one strike of the die is required to produce a bullion coin, and as a result, they can be produced much more quickly and efficiently. The rate of coins struck depends on the material they are made of, but 3,000 silver bullion coins and 250 gold bullion coins can be produced in an hour. In 2020, the Royal Canadian Mint released a $10 silver bullion coin featuring the mythical Kraken to start off a new series of Creatures of the North.
Proof coins are commemorative coins of the highest quality. Like bullion, proof coins may be struck in precious metals, such as silver or gold. However, it is at least as much the design and quality of the coin as the metal used that determines its value. Therefore, proof coins may also be struck in base metals while bullion, which is intended as an investment, never are.
Proof coins are valued for the high levels of craftsmanship that goes into producing them. It takes much longer to produce a single proof coin than it does a bullion coin because each has to be struck by the die several times. This gives the coin an attractive, mirror-like finish and brings out the details of the design in exquisite sharpness.
To produce a flawless, unblemished proof coin, the dies themselves actually receive a lot more attention than they would when producing bullion. To ensure the coins bear no unintended marks or imperfections from striking, the dies are cleaned with air before producing another coin. The dies also have to be repolished after striking a few hundred coins to maintain the quality of the finish.
Every year, the Royal Canadian Mint releases several commemorative designs as collectable proof coins, and 2020 is no exception. For example, last year marked the 150th anniversary of the establishment of the Northwest Territories. The design of the RCM coin produced to celebrate the occasion is rich in symbolism, and the painstaking process of striking each proof brings out minute details, from the migratory birds in the sky to the stones beneath the young dancer’s feet.
Silver Bullion, Proof Coins, and More
Neither proof coins nor bullion are superior to one another. It depends on your purpose for purchasing. If you’re a collector, you’re probably more interested in proof coins, whereas if you’re an investor, bullion better serves your purpose. Fortunately, at Colonial Acres Coins, we have some of everything, from gold, copper, and silver bullion Canada to commemorative proof coins from the Royal Canadian Mint. Check out our unique deals today.