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Australian Fifty Cent Coins

1980 "Double Bar" 50c


A part of the reeding design behind the Emu's head was thought to cause weakness within the dies and create fractures. On most years the offending part of the design is removed. It would seem that the Coat of Arms 50c master punch still has the bars and the offending part of the design must be removed before finishing dies.
In 1979 and 1980 the bars can be quite prominent. In others years like 1966, 1969 and 1999 there can sometimes be seen the remains of where the bars were.

This is an early plaster model provided by Stuart Devlin for the selection panel for the decimal coin designs. The Double Bars are quite clearly a deliberate part of the reeding in the design. Alongside this model is another one also by Mr Devlin which is much closer to final design than this version. It also shows the reeding.
Both are on permanent display at the Royal Australian Mint, Canberra.

Finding good uncirculated 1980 coins seems to be quite Herculean. Most are from circulation.

Nominal Specifications

Denomination: 50 cents
Metal: 75% Copper
25% Nickel
Mass: 15.55 grams
Diameter: 31.50 mm
Reverse: Stuart Devlin
Obverse: Arnold Machin