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Buyers look fast and happy

Superman is apparently a super theme for Royal Canadian Mint coins.

When I checked yesterday at its website, only one of the seven coins was still available to order online. That is amazing considering I blogged about the new coins’ availability just last Wednesday.

However six of the seven pieces were still available in at least two of the three stores that the RCM runs.

The stores are in Ottawa, Winnipeg and Vancouver.

Does this mean some collectors will be making mad dashes to these three locations to scoop up the remaining pieces?

The single gold coin is no longer available anywhere, but that is probably not surprising considering that the maximum mintage is 2,000.

None of the coins has a high mintage if measured by an American yardstick. 15,000 is tops.

The lenticular base metal piece also is not available for ordering online even as there is no indicated maximum mintage for this particular coin.

I also looked at some happy reviews left by buyers on the website.

Sellouts are not unknown at the Royal Canadian Mint. They are to be congratulated for achieving this one.

However, as an American looking at the happy scene, I cannot help but think about the all-too common American reaction to sellouts of U.S. coins in recent years.

American collectors who were unable to make their intended purchases of coins with pre-announced maximum mintages then vent their frustrations and write their congressman, because they could not obtain them.

Perhaps the new U.S. method of taking orders for a specified period of time and then striking coins to meet that number has permanently put an end to this bad habit. I hope so.

We still have the race to get new U.S. coin issues certified by third-party grading services as either first strikes or top grades and the disappointment when hoped-for grades and designations are not obtained.

Sometimes I think American collectors have become too serious and too grim.

What can cure that?

The U.S. Mint offering graded coins directly to collectors?

The U.S. Mint certifying each coin as to date of manufacture?

Who knows?

What I do know is I feel better about being a collector when I see enthusiasm expressed for any new coin.

Thanks, Royal Canadian Mint, for making this happen with Superman.

Buzz blogger Dave Harper is winner of the 2013 Numismatic Literary Guild Award for Best Blog and is editor of the weekly newspaper “Numismatic News.”

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