Q&A- Double Headed 20 cent -is it genuine or a magicians coin?

July 2, 2009


I have a double headed 20c in fair condition. It has 1968 on one side and 1969 on the other. Is it of any particular value?


Hi, Thanks for reading our blog and thankyou for your question. The coin you speak of is almost certainly a forgery of 2 sides cut and joined. This is often done as a joke so you can win the coin flip "heads or tails?" Can you see any evidence of this on the rim?

If you can't see that it's been tampered with then the next step is to weigh the coin accurately, it should weigh 11.31g. If there is any difference there it is almost certainly a fake.

There are some genuinely head/head or tail/tail error coins out there. For these coins to be made there has to be some "fiddling" going on with the presses at the mint for the "special" coin to be struck. Often these coins are in top grade. A genuine coin will always be upset 180 degrees, this is how the press works with the wrong die on the opposing side. Is your coin upset 180 degrees? (Hold the head upright and spin the coin around. Is the other other head upright straight or uside down -hence the 180 deg?) If it is genuine then these coins may sell for up to a couple of thousand dollars each.

Your coin being of 2 different years also rings alarm bells as the reverse die for the previous year would have been well and truly put away at the Mint making it much more difficult for the press to be tampered with to produce this coin. It is most likely a backyard machining and gluing job.
Happy hunting,
The australian-threepence.com blog team

Posted by harrisk at July 2, 2009 1:02 PM
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