Mint condition"The mint is the sole supplier of Australia's circulating coinage, so it's quite a unique place to work"
As toll room manager at the Royal Australian Mint, Ashley Moffat plays an important role in ensuring that Australians have the coins they need for millions of daily transactions. He is working closely with Seco to boost productivity and raise the quality and attractiveness of the coin the mint produces.
The mint is the sole supplier of Australia’s circulating coinage, so it’s quite a unique place to work. We also produce coinage for a number of smaller nations, as well as commemorative coins and medals.
I head a 23-member team, most of whom are qualified toolmakers. The Mint produces coins by pressing metal blanks between two dies in a coin press, and one of our jobs is to produce the dies and the master tools from which all the dies are created. The master tools are created on CNC high-speed engraving machines and then require hours of hand polishing under a microscope to get just the right finish.
We are constantly striving to use the most modern technologies and methods, to increase output and consistency, and to produce finer design details while lowering costs and lead times.
We stepped up our cooperation with Seco about six years ago and four years ago they assumed responsibility for the production of our engraving tools, which was previously done in house. Over the past two years, we have been trialing a new generation of engraving tools that can run faster, last longer, and have an end radius of just 0.04 of a millimeter – something previously unattainable for us. The trials are going well and it is hoped they will replace the current generation, improving coin detail, tool durability and workshop safety.”