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On 11th December 2019 onwards, I started to build on this thread. It aims to give you general information about the 2nd issue of the Hercules (ie., same country and same issuer and same face valued used). What a great surprise, the 12 tasks/labours of Hercules (2nd issue) (i.e., the theme) was suddenly presented in front of collectors without any marketing on the 25th of November 2019. The product release totally caused a chaos on the release days either the Pobjoy mint website or collectors. The Hercules theme was originally issued in 1990s under the Gibraltar government order by the British Pobjoy Mint maker with a face value of £2 bi-metallic coinage. Yes, it has been over 20 years since the 1st release in 1997, the new issues have nothing changed and nothing improved but instead with a so-called diamond finish standard. It is a bit ironic really here. After more than 20 years, there is no any good and innovative products showing off in the numismatic world in the 21 century.
This time, the 12-coin as a set is struck at a prooflike diamond finish standard. Each coin (or each task) has a issue limit of 1,750 coins along with a cert at a price of £12.95 (incl. VAT) posted and delivery charged, and later the final one £2 extra added up on top. You may feel this small increase is not too much, but actually it says that well done your marketing and you have got more followers. In this current climate world, people probably donot care how good numismatic product it is and what potential investment value it is, but do care that limit number (i.e., mintage).
On each release day, you are going to receive an email sent from their mailing list system that contains release information and purchase link. Using purchase link is the quick way to get on the refresh page game. This just remind me that high frequency trading in financial market. A little awkward situation is the Pobjoy Mint website not designed for this purpose, cannot handle such high volume of traffic. The 1st coin in series was sold out within 3 hours on the day without any limitation of how many you intend to buy. The 2nd and 3rd ones were sold in a problematic chaos ending and after the 3rd one, each labour was sold within a second. To collectors, they have got used that “the Pobjoy video games on”, meaning how efficiently refresh the page to load, and to the Mint, the hook has been established well at the heart of following customers and added values to their brand again.
The real value behind the 2nd issue, probably it is a prooflike Diamond Finish standard. But these re-issues will also boost the 1st issue price up inevitably. The technique of PLDF has never been implemented on £2 Gibraltar bi-metallic coin before. What is more, the government of Gibraltar and the Pobjoy Mint have both overseen re-issued coins’ advantages (ie., huge revenue), based on examples built by the Royal Mint, more specifically, like 2019 UK 50p Kew Gardens, 2009 UK 40 years of the 50p coin from 1973 to 2009 and 2019 UK the 50 years of 50p coin etc.. This way/situation can just simply be concluded that there is NO any good products or arts being made into this pool. Re-issued coins are simply promoting original coins price high over roof eventually, and more and more people get their hands on 1st issue.
The 1st issue of the 12 labours of Hercules was released on £2 face value in 1997 in bimetal and silver, and the 12-coin was completed in 2000. All coins were Brilliant Uncirculated (BUNC) coins with/out die mark AA. However, £2 silver proof coin version with gold-gilt were merely known by collectors. We have talked about this silver proof set, so you can click on here to read. Clearly, it has a gap between PF and BUNC. Therefore, the 2nd issue of the 12 tasks of Hercules was released with a PLDF standard in November 2019. If you are aware of some No Die mark (ND) coins in the 1st issue, the current PLDF coin and then ND coin has no a big difference in terms of a finish standard excluding H8 of the 2nd issue.
Below, it shows that what do we get for £12.95 at early stage and then £12.95 plus £2.95 delivery fee (note H12 sold at £14.95 plus 2.95 delivery fee)<#1>.
- No.1 to No. 12 (eg., the Nemean Lion), the 12 labours of Hercules, Gibraltar £2 Prooflike (PL) Diamond Finish (DF) coin
Now, let we have a close look at the very first task of Hercules 2020, £2 coin from Gibraltar.
- No.1, The Nemean Lion, Gibraltar £2 Prooflike coin
In terms of a Prooflike (PL) coin, it was defined by the Isle of Man government on the 2017 50p House of Keys “Proof” coin, an error letter saying a prooflike coin is to be struck at least ONCE upon a polished blank. Therefore, the mirror-liked field is visible (as high as better) and the reflectivity reaches a certain length like 4-7 centimeter or over. When you look at this coin, eye-appearing it shows very shiny to me, the mirror-liked field is visible, and has reflectivity on coin. However, based on the ability of minting coins by the Pobjoy mint, they still have room to get improved lately (see No. 8 frosted version this is what I am talking about).
From the market prospective, the theme of this kind of product, the 2nd issue of the 12 labours of Hercules, just perfectly fits in the gap of previously left between BUNC in base metal and PF in precious metal, and simultaneously blows away fakes on the market. One stone and more than 3 birds. However, this also is a chance to show what your disadvantages are. Firstly, it should go to website traffic width definitely.
2019 Gibraltar Father Christmas 50p DF coin is back on track in terms of coin grade and in a way of selling coins UNC, DF, AGPF, AGPDFT and AUPF, and the 12 labours of Hercules (2nd issue) is coming out. Wait, Gibraltar the world first black pearl 50p DF coin “Penny black” as well. It concludes that the Pobjoy mint have recovered from the bad divorce and are doing something to strike it back. This story is ironic and funny. It might be a story enough for tea time.
Hey, your little brother drives a super speedy boat behind you, the Royal Mint, how do you feel and how to react? With regard to the Tower mint, it is distance far behind the start line. All 3 government-hired mints are inland, 2 in England and 1 in Wales.
Each issue day story in relation to each labour after this line, it shows below.
on 21st December, 2019—H2
Here, let we have a look this 2nd coin in series. First of all, the outer packaging has no difference like 1st coin, therefore, we don’t spend more time on this. If you want to see what it looks like, you can scroll up to <#1>. In regard to certificate associated with each coin, it has no point to address its function further, indeed, it is a piece of paper and does stand for nothing. If this is true, only the issue limit number is a piece of information.
- No.2, The Lernean Hydra, Gibraltar £2 Prooflike coin
The coin you are looking at is nothing special in contrast to the 1st one, just a 2 coin from Gibraltar. However, how did you get this coin? I think most people definitely have different views on it. To be short, it was wasting time to obtain one, and joy became a nightmare. And, from the perspective of collector, the more coin you get, I mean the entire series, the nasty you get involved naturally. Please Please, don’t kill this hobby especially in a way that cashless will be the final destination in our society.
The most interesting thing was the release day which was 10/12/2019, not the coin itself. The first 2-coin release days were very close. 2nd/12 was sold within hours before launch time. Even they officially said they released the last batch around 1245 on the day, the question was arose. It was highly likely already all gone. Don’t forget they shut down the www.pobjoy.com at least twice, it is very abnormal for a business. Width was set up at 3 per household per transaction initially, and people in mailing system were at least 8,000 (unconfirmed), people, do the maths.
If you placed your order(s) with the www.pobjoy.com, you would have a confirmation email (ie., invoice#) generated by them and simultaneously your money was collected by their payment merchant (ie., transaction#). Later soon in this case (actually, you should have had an order# email from them simultaneously!), the order# email you received contained your actually order associated with the transaction# (with regard to transaction#, it was erased manually in this case). Did you notice 2 elements in confirmation letter, a) the invoice# and b). at the bottom, “This email does not constitute an order until payment has been processed.” The transaction# in their payment merchant was matched with a). Therefore, a confirmation email + cleared payment, a contract was formed between buyer and seller. Actually in this case, it was a contract to seller and buyer only when the seller sent out their order# manually. Once you clicked on the last line in confirmation email, you were redirected to a invalid page of Terms & Conditions. Wait, at this stage, how nasty it was behind the dark curtain. Obviously, the www.pobjoy.com did not have competence to host such coin release.
on 14th January, 2020—H3
They released information that they were going to put the 3rd coin in series on sale during the week. However, on the days of 15th & 16th, they cancelled the planned release, because people used auto-refresh technology which is illegal to take advantage on buying coins. Therefore, the release was abort. The mint website was down and up until the 17th which was the day of game on. In the following week, they threw in another batch. This is the story about the 3rd coin. In the meanwhile, they have totally changed the way of how to release information. A big lesson they learned at least so far.
- No.3, The Ceryneian Hind, Gibraltar £2 Prooflike coin
on 3rd, February, 2020—H4
they sent out notice that release of the Hercules in Feb afterwards is going to reduce the limit per person AND per household down to 2 now from the very first unlimited and then 3. It was good news to people who squeeze in the queue, and they tried the best to keep the business fair.
As usual, this one below still shows coin quality very bad, especially surface blemish on outer ring part. This fact makes me pondering the question: “What is REALLY a diamond finish standard on £2 the Hercules?” A batch of 1,750 coins per month is not a big batch of job lot, the quality of coin, however, is expected to very low unsurprisingly. What is more, it is no longer free-of-charge on delivery since 3rd coin release, meaning extra £2.95 on top of your bill. This comes down to £15.90 (=£12.95 + £2.95) per transaction. Most people donot care this sale price, because you could re-sell the coin at very high price once a coin lands in your hands. However, this move either the Mint or purchasers is damaging the sustainability of the modern numismatic market. Re-issue of the labours of Hercules, it probably follows the Royal Mint move in 2019 50 years of the 50p coin plus a gap between BU grade and PF grade among British £2 coins on the market. This move, indeed, to the Mint, creates a huge demand. Based on the fact of the Pobjoy mint reissuing the 2nd issue of the Hercules, it is most likely to say the rare GIB £2 coins made by the Pojboy Mint in the past (1988 to 2003) and now (2017 to present). How rare it is, remains unknown.
- No.4, The Erymanthian Boar, Gibraltar £2 Prooflike coin
on 27th, February—H5
This one was issued at 5 mins after 9 in the morning, and formed a sign that two coins in series issued at the same month but different date.
- No.5, The Augeias’ Stables, Gibraltar £2 Prooflike coin
on 17th, March—H6 & H7
The pair were issued during the Coronavirus outbreak and a national lockdown. It is really a surprise that 2 coins were issued at the same.
- No.6, The Stymphalian Birds, Gibraltar £2 Prooflike coin
- No.7 The Cretan Bull, Gibraltar £2 Prooflike coin
on 25th March, the Pobjoy Mint office was closed under government guidance until further notice, and resumed business on 17th April. A month later,
Back to business on 13th, May—H8 & H9
A pair again! A pair again!
- No.8, The Mares of Diomedes, Gibraltar £2 Prooflike coin
- [Type I, regular version in terms of PL]
- [Type II, frosted version]
on 25th, June—H10 & H11
Hooray, a pair.
- No.10, The Cattle of Geryon, Gibraltar £2 Prooflike coin
- No.11, The Apples of the Hesperides, Gibraltar £2 Prooflike coin
Finally, on 3rd of September–H12
Leave one choice of a single coin to be released on the day. It has been almost 2 months since last issue day.
In the afternoon, it was out around tea time. Finally, the 12-coin set has landed on earth. It was a tough job and experience while the Coronavirus was spreading among us.
- No.12, The Cerberus, Gibraltar £2 Prooflike coin
The coins showed above are randomly picked up.
2 thoughts on “Gibraltar £2 Two Pound Prooflike Diamond Finish Coin 2020 The Labours of Hercules (2nd issue)”
Firstly thanks for a very informative read. Are you planning on writing anything on the original non precious Hercules release? I’m trying to ascertain the total number of designs including die variants. So far I’m aware of 15 for certain as I have them, but would welcome any further insight.
Thank you for your comment. I am glad that it gives you some help from my blogs.
I know how hard to get through all variants, you must have a really big sample size. Also, it is a way to say how you like it. However, I am not going to discover this mine field. Because all variants are based on the need of daily demands (i.e., bi £2 coins from 1997-2000 were circulating commemorative.) This is the main reason (i.e., commemorative) you can see silver Hercules Labours here. But one thing, worth spending time on it, is to look at Die, some with but some without.
Die variants, back to old days, are an interesting way to look at coins, due to lack of technology, skills and extra. In a modern way, it is no longer carrying any great value contained but a great marketing value. Because cashless is getting closer and closer.